Useful Bible Studies > Revelation Commentary > chapter 18

God measures the punishment that is right and proper

Revelation 18:6

When God is the judge, the punishment matches the crime (Exodus 21:23-25; Mark 4:24). God has measured Babylonís evil deeds, and now he measures the proper punishment. Babylon destroyed whole nations with great force - but the power of God is much greater than any human power. As Babylon destroyed other nations, so other nations will destroy Babylon, in order to carry out Godís judgement (17:16-17).

God measured Israelís troubles (Isaiah 40:2), but afterwards he gave a double share of joy to Israelís people (Isaiah 61:7).

So, the joy of Israelís people who returned to God was complete. However, the punishment of Babylonís people, the people who selfishly choose to follow their own desires, is similarly double. It is a double punishment, or a complete punishment.

Godís law says that a murderer cannot pay to avoid his punishment (Numbers 35:31). In the Bible, the punishment for murder was death. God can forgive a murderer, but only if that person turns to him. Babylonís people were responsible for the murders of many of Godís people (see the Book of Lamentations). Since then, many other nations have behaved as Babylon did. They have not turned to God; they continued their crimes (18:24).

In Revelation 6:9-10, John saw Godís people who had died because of their relationship with God. They urged God, as their master, to carry out his judgement against those who were responsible for their deaths. It is God who has the right to carry out this judgement.

God will not disappoint his loyal people (Romans 12:19). He will carry out the judgement that is right and proper. That judgement will end the power by which people have controlled this world for their own selfish benefit. Then it will at last be possible for Christís rule on earth to begin.

Next part: Babylon as queen and as widow (Revelation 18:7-8)


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© 2016, Keith Simons.