Verse 16 says that Christís great enemy, the antichrist, will destroy the greatest city in the world. The 10 kings, or rulers, that support him will join him in that terrible attack. They will all act together in order to carry out their evil plan in the cruellest possible manner.
Now, in verse 17, we read that God has brought this about. He has caused these kings to join together. He has caused them to give their power to the antichrist. They are carrying out Godís judgement against that city. Everything that God has spoken against that city must happen.
God is completely good, and he never does any evil thing (James 1:17). So it may surprise us to read that these evil people are carrying out Godís judgement by their wicked act. However, we must not imagine that God has done anything wrong here. God never does any wrong thing.
It is not wrong for a judge to issue a judgement against guilty people. It is completely right, and good, and proper for evil people to suffer the punishment that they deserve. That is what God is doing here. Because God never does any evil thing, he is allowing evil people to carry out his judgement against other evil people.
God has often warned the people in that city of his judgement against them (Isaiah chapters 13, 14, 21, 46 and 47; Jeremiah chapters 50 and 51; Habakkuk chapter 2). He has given them many opportunities to turn to him (2 Peter 3:9), but they have refused. In the end, his judgement against them will be sudden.
The evil people who carry out that attack will not escape their own punishment. It will happen very soon afterwards. Christ will come to act in judgement against the antichrist (19:20), and against everyone who supports him (14:9-11).
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© 2016, Keith Simons.