Take a fresh glance at Revelation 18. Keep in mind that I teach Revelation is mostly a matter of how God does things on this earth, and not so much a precise prediction of what is going to happen. It’s an extended parable revealing God’s wrath on sin. My point in referencing this chapter is the symbolism of Babylon: It’s a false religion of world domination.
I can tell you that it isn’t news, but it seems very few people are aware of it: There has long been a merchant culture that functions as a cult of Mammon. You see it condemned in that chapter of Revelation as the merchants leeching off the enforced “free trade” you would expect from a world government. This merchant cult of Mammon rose to prominence with the birth of the middle class at the end of the Middle Ages. It has been sold to us as the sensible objections of merchants to all the regulations, and the taxes and tolls, hindering the free movement of their goods to all the markets they could find, and bringing back goods not available at home. If you worship material comfort, it’s perfectly sensible to resent restraints on trade like that.
Now go back and look at some of the early Genesis narratives (chapters 1-11). Stop and consider how most of the world disputes those early narratives. That’s because the world presumes the necessity of legalistic literal reading instead of seeing the bigger picture. By no means does the Bible attempt to present the history of the human race. The narrative strives to paint an image of moral truth, and pulls from what was in ancient times a common pool of mythology aimed at that very task. Much of it is symbolism and parable, so literalism is simply stupid. If you take the time to understand the ancient narrative style and how it was supposed to work, you would come up with a different picture than the one that garners so many objections.
Fundamental concept: We were created immortal. But immortality requires a specific moral orientation. If you depart from that orientation, you sacrifice immortality. The core nature of the Fall is departure from that orientation. Thus, our obvious task is recovering that orientation so we can recover immortality. Everything else that occupies our time in this fallen realm is just means and method on the way to restoring that moral orientation. If you get lost in the means and methods, you’ll never get home again.
The whole business of worshiping Mammon means getting lost and staying lost from that original moral orientation of immortality. All it does is confirm the first mistake we made in departing from that orientation God gave us in the Garden. This false orientation on this world is the Forbidden Fruit. It’s an obsession with subjecting all things to human reason versus trusting revelation.
The Tower of Babel symbolizes the human aspiration to take control of our human situation by human reason. It is all about eating that Forbidden Fruit. As long as we try to build a tower into the heavens by our human capabilities, we can’t even understand where “Heaven” is. It’s another case of taking literally the symbolism of the sky as “Heaven”. It ain’t up there; it’s over in another realm of existence. The Garden of Eden was never in this world; this whole realm of existence is outside the Garden. Getting back into the Garden, our true Home, requires leaving this world.
And it requires a moral orientation that doesn’t take this world seriously. It requires ditching our reliance on human reason and all those great and sensible things we think we understand, so that we can align ourselves with the immortal moral orientation.
Our modern globalism is a false religion. It is eating the Forbidden Fruit. It is the worship of Mammon with all the obsession with human physical comfort. This body in which we live is not the Eden body; it’s a prison that keeps us from Eden. And the notion that we should then just end this life voluntarily is still thinking like a mortal. We have been cast out of the Garden until we pass through the Flaming Sword of revelation; we are required to restore that immortal moral vision first. Once you do that, you understand the necessity of patiently slogging through this prison existence until God is ready to let us back into the Garden.
You should hardly be surprised that a major portion of humanity insists with all earnestness that we really must have open borders and open trade and a world government to enforce that openness. That is building the Tower of Babel all over again. It’s also the objective behind communism, socialism, and a whole range of so-called progressive or leftist ideals. But it’s also the whole objective behind capitalism, conservatism, and everything on the right end of the political spectrum, because those things add up to just a different kind of world government.
The whole point behind the Tower of Babel narrative is that God really does want us humans divided into a million tiny tribal nations. If you can’t accept that idea, then you have rejected revelation, you have rejected the Flaming Sword, and you have rejected Eden.
Notice that I’m not saying Eden is a million tiny tribes, but that as long as we live in a world outside of Eden, we cannot hope to get back into Eden until we understand that human government cannot be trusted to do anything right. So it has to be restricted to the absolute minimum. It has to be confined to tiny tribal nations with barely any authority at all, and tightly constrained at that. Only God is capable of ruling the human race, and by rejecting His revealed moral orientation, we lose the blessing of His government.
Every time we try to build the Tower of Babel, God is going to destroy it again by destroying the unity we imagine is possible. And the means of destruction is simply exposing the lie. God’s wrath on sin is merely the case of reasserting His revelation as truth and exposing how everything else is false. God is currently ripping the globalist cult to shreds — Babylon is fallen, is fallen. And the imperialist cult is next.
Meanwhile, the means and methods we employ in confronting that Flaming Sword at the gate of Eden is all about changing you, not the world around you. We will leave this world behind; Christ’s return will destroy it. What we do not leave behind is the moral changes in our souls. So the whole mission is defeating the Devil in your own soul. He will retain a certain level of mastery over this world, but he doesn’t rightly own your soul. The door to the prison is open; you have to follow Christ to walk out of it.