Revelation 14:8
Parallel Verses
New American Standard Bible
And another angel, a second one, followed, saying, "Fallen, fallen is Babylon the great, she who has made all the nations drink of the wine of the passion of her immorality."

King James Bible
And there followed another angel, saying, Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication.

Darby Bible Translation
And another, a second, angel followed, saying, Great Babylon has fallen, has fallen, which of the wine of the fury of her fornication has made all nations drink.

World English Bible
Another, a second angel, followed, saying, "Babylon the great has fallen, which has made all the nations to drink of the wine of the wrath of her sexual immorality."

Young's Literal Translation
And another messenger did follow, saying, 'Fall, fall, did Babylon, the great city, because of the wine of the wrath of her whoredom she hath given to all nations to drink.'

Revelation 14:8 Parallel
Commentary
Barnes' Notes on the Bible

And there followed another angel - That is, in the vision. It is not necessary to suppose that this would, in the fulfillment, succeed the other in time. The chapter is made up of a number of representations, all designed to illustrate the same general thing, and to produce the same general effect on the mind - that the gospel would be finally triumphant, and that, therefore, the hearts of the troubled and the afflicted should be comforted. The representation in this verse, bearing on this point, is, that Babylon, the great enemy, would fall to rise no more.

Babylon - This is the first time that the word "Babylon" occurs in this book, though it is repeatedly mentioned afterward, Revelation 16:19; Revelation 17:5; Revelation 18:2, Revelation 18:10, Revelation 18:21. In reference to the literal Babylon, the word is used, in the New Testament, in Matthew 1:11-13; Acts 7:43; 1 Peter 5:13. See Intro. to 1 Peter, section 2. Babylon was a well-known city on the Euphrates (for a full description of which see the notes on Isaiah, analysis of chapters 13 and 14), and was, in the days of its pride and glory, the head of the pagan world. In reference to the meaning of the word in this place, it may be remarked:

(1) That the general characteristics of Babylon were, that it was proud, haughty, insolent, oppressive. It was chiefly known and remembered by the Hebrew people as a power that had invaded the Holy Land; that had reduced its capital and temple to ruins; that had destroyed the independence of their country, subjecting it to the condition of a province, and that had carried away the inhabitants into a long and painful captivity. It became, therefore, the emblem of all that was haughty and oppressive, and especially of all that persecuted the church of God.

(2) the word must be used here to denote some power that resembled the ancient and literal Babylon in these characteristics. The literal Babylon was no more; but the name might be properly used to denote a similar power. We are to seek, therefore, in the application of this, for some power that had the same general characteristics which the literal Babylon had.

(3) in inquiring, then, what is referred to here by the word "Babylon," we may remark:

(a) that it could not be the literal Babylon on the Euphrates, for the whole representation here is of something future, and the literal Babylon had long since disappeared, never, according to the prophecies, to be rebuilt. See the notes on Isaiah 13:20-22.

(b) All the circumstances require us to understand this of Rome, at some period of its history: for Rome, like Babylon, was the seat of empire, and the head of the pagan world; Rome was characterized by many of the same attributes as Babylon, being arrogant, proud, oppressive; Rome, like Babylon, was distinguished for its conquests, and for the fact that it made all other nations subject to its control; Rome had been, like Babylon, a desolating power, having destroyed the capital of the Holy Land, and burnt its beautiful temple, and reduced the country to a province. Rome, like Babylon of old, was the most formidable power with which the church had to contend. Yet.

(c) it is not, I suppose, Rome considered as pagan that is here meant, but Rome considered as the prolongation of the ancient power in the papal form. Alike in this book and in Daniel, Rome, pagan and papal, is regarded as one power, standing in direct opposition to the gospel of Christ, resisting its progress in the world, and preventing its final prevalence. See the notes on Daniel 7. When that falls, the last enemy of the church will be destroyed, and the final triumph of the true religion will be speedy and complete. See Daniel 7:26-27.

(d) So it was understood among the early Christians. Mr. Gibbon, speaking of the expectations of the early Christians about the end of the world, and the glory of the literal reign of the Messiah, says, "While the happiness and glory of a temporal reign were promised to the disciples of Christ, the most dreadful calamities were denounced against an unbelieving world. The edification of the New Jerusalem was to advance by equal steps with the destruction of the mystic Babylon; and as long as the emperors who reigned before Constantine persisted in the profession of idolatry, the epithet of Babylon was applied to the city and to the empire of Rome," vol. i. p. 263.

Is fallen - That is, an event appeared in vision as if a mighty city fell to rise no more.

Is fallen - This is repeated to give emphasis to the declaration, and to express the joyousness of that event.

That great city - Babylon in its glory was the largest city of the world. Rome, in its turn, also became the largest; and the expression used here denotes that the power here referred to would be properly represented by cities of their magnitude.

Because she made all nations drink of the wine - This language is probably taken from Jeremiah 51:7; "Babylon hath been a golden cup in the Lord's hand, that made all the earth drunken: the nations have drunk of the wine, therefore the nations are mad." Babylon here, in accordance with the usual custom of the sacred writers when speaking of cities (see the notes on Isaiah 1:8), is represented as a female - here a female of abandoned character, holding in her hand a cup of wine to attract her lovers; that is, she allures and intoxicates them. This is a beautiful image to denote the influence of a great and corrupt city, and especially a city corrupt in its religion and devoted to idolatry and superstition, and may well be applied either to Babylon or Rome, literal or mystical.

Of the wrath - There seems an incongruity in the use of this word here, and Prof. Stuart proposes to render it "the inflammatory wine of her fornication"; that is, inebriating wine - wine that excited the passions and that led to uncleanness. He supposes that the word here used - θυμός thumos - means "heat, inflammation," corresponding to the Hebrew חמה chēmaah There are no instances, however, in the New Testament in which the word is used in this sense. The common and proper meaning is mind, soul, then mind agitated with passion or under the influence of desire - a violent commotion of mind, as wrath, anger, indignation (Robinson, Lexicon). The ground of the representation here seems to be that Yahweh is often described as giving to the nations in his wrath an intoxicating cup so that they should reel and stagger to their destruction. Compare Jeremiah 25:15; Jeremiah 51:7. The meaning here is, that the nations had drunk of that cup which brought on the wrath of God on account of her "fornication." Babylon is represented as a harlot, with a cup of wine in her hand, and the effect of drinking that cup was to expose them to the wrath of God, hence, called "the wine of the wrath of her fornication" - the alluring cup that was followed by wrath on account of her fornication.

continued...

Revelation 14:8 Parallel Commentaries

Library
Heavenly Worship
"Up to her courts, with joys unknown, The sacred tribes repaired." Between the wings of the cherubim Jehovah dwelt; on the one altar there all the sacrifices were offered to high heaven. They loved Mount Sion, and often did they sing, when they drew nigh to her, in their annual pilgrimages, "How amiable are thy tabernacles O Lord God of hosts, my King and my God!" Sion is now desolate; she hath been ravished by the enemy; she hath been utterly destroyed; her vail hath been rent asunder, and the virgin
Charles Haddon Spurgeon—Spurgeon's Sermons Volume 3: 1857

Let the Inner Ear of the virgin Also...
24. Let the inner ear of the virgin also, thy holy child, hear these things. I shall see [2284] how far she goes before you in the Kingdom of That King: it is another question. Yet ye have found, mother and daughter, Him, Whom by beauty of chastity ye ought to please together, having despised, she all, you second, marriage. Certainly if there were husbands whom ye had to please, by this time, perhaps, you would feel ashamed to adorn yourself together with your daughter; now let it not shame you,
St. Augustine—On the Good of Widowhood.

Ripe for Gathering
'Thus hath the Lord God shewed unto me: and behold a basket of summer fruit. 2. And He said, Amos, what seest thou? And I said, A basket of summer fruit. Then said the Lord unto me, The end is come upon My people of Israel; I will not again pass by them any more. 3. And the songs of the temple shall be howlings in that day, saith the Lord God: there shall be many dead bodies in every place; they shall cast them forth with silence. 4. Hear this, O ye that swallow up the needy, even to make the poor
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

Which Sentence Dishonoreth the Holy Martyrs, Nay Rather Taketh Away Holy Martyrdoms Altogether. ...
3. Which sentence dishonoreth the holy Martyrs, nay rather taketh away holy martyrdoms altogether. For they would do more justly and wisely, according to these men, not to confess to their persecutors that they were Christians, and by confessing make them murderers: but rather by telling a lie, and denying what they were, should both themselves keep safe the convenience of the flesh and purpose of the heart, and not allow those to accomplish the wickedness which they had conceived in their mind.
St. Augustine—Against Lying

Cross References
Isaiah 13:1
The oracle concerning Babylon which Isaiah the son of Amoz saw.

Isaiah 21:9
"Now behold, here comes a troop of riders, horsemen in pairs." And one said, "Fallen, fallen is Babylon; And all the images of her gods are shattered on the ground."

Jeremiah 50:1
The word which the LORD spoke concerning Babylon, the land of the Chaldeans, through Jeremiah the prophet:

Jeremiah 51:7
Babylon has been a golden cup in the hand of the LORD, Intoxicating all the earth. The nations have drunk of her wine; Therefore the nations are going mad.

Jeremiah 51:8
Suddenly Babylon has fallen and been broken; Wail over her! Bring balm for her pain; Perhaps she may be healed.

Daniel 4:30
"The king reflected and said, 'Is this not Babylon the great, which I myself have built as a royal residence by the might of my power and for the glory of my majesty?'

Revelation 11:8
And their dead bodies will lie in the street of the great city which mystically is called Sodom and Egypt, where also their Lord was crucified.

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