Once again it must be emphasised that the woman and the beast are a composite power, made up of many moving parts. The last moving part to complete the whole of Babylon the Great is, that she is ‘sitting on’ the financial institutions of the nations and she controls the economy of the world. This is self-evident from what is said about her in chapter 18 of Revelation.
The control of the money and the control of the world economy, is the foundation of Babylon’s power. This is because financial and economic power, translates into political, religious, cultural and military power. But even though this control is the foundation of its power, it is also one of its greatest weaknesses. It is a great weakness because, the manner in which Babylon’s finance and economy is structured, leads to great financial and economic instability. One source of inspiration provides insight into the fickle world of finance, business and economic:
They are struggling in vain to place business operations on a more secure basis. Ellen White, Testimonies for the Church, vol. 9, p. 13.
There are not many, even among educators and statesmen, who comprehend the causes that underlie the present state of society. Those who hold the reins of government are not able to solve the problem of moral corruption, poverty, pauperism, and increasing crime. Ellen White, Testimonies for the Church, vol. 9, p. 13.
In the future, strange things will happen. I tell you this so that you may not be surprised at what takes place… Under the leadership of Satan there are men who today are doing all in their power to plunge the world into commercial strife. Thus Satan is trying to bring about a condition of things that will make the world uncivilized. Ellen White Manuscript Release 19, p. 395.
In addition, there are many who have studied the Babylonian system and many who have worked in it, including many of its top leaders, who have observed the iniquitous and unstable nature of the system and they are well qualified to comment along the same lines as Ellen White:
Progress is cumulative in science and engineering, but cyclical in finance. James Grant, author of Money of the Mind.
If all the bank loans were paid, no one could have a bank deposit, and there would not be a dollar of coin or currency in circulation. This is a staggering thought. We are completely dependent on the commercial Banks. Someone has to borrow every dollar we have in circulation, cash or credit. If the Banks create ample synthetic money we are prosperous; if not, we starve. We are absolutely without a permanent money system. When one gets a complete grasp of the picture, the tragic absurdity of our hopeless position is almost incredible, but there it is. It is the most important subject intelligent persons can investigate and reflect upon. It is so important that our present civilization may collapse unless it becomes widely understood and the defects remedied very soon. Robert H. Hemphill, Credit Manager of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
It is well enough that the people of the nation do not understand our banking and monetary system for, if they did, I believe there would be a revolution before tomorrow morning. Henry Ford, quoted by, William Grieder, Secrets of the Temple, (Simon and Schuster, New York, 1987), p. 54.
The few who do understand the system, will either be so interested in its profits, or so dependent on its favours that there will be no opposition from that class, while on the other hand, the great body of people, mentally incapable of comprehending the tremendous advantages… will bear its burden without complaint, and perhaps without suspecting that the system is inimical to their best interests. John Sherman, protégé of the Rothschild banking family, June 25, 1863, in a letter sent to New York bankers, Morton, and Gould, in support of the then proposed National Banking Act.
I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies. Already they have raised up a moneyed aristocracy that has set the Government at defiance. The issuing power should be taken from the banks and restored to the people to whom it properly belongs. Thomas Jefferson, US President, 1801-1809.
The money power preys upon the nation in times of peace and conspires against it in times of adversity. It is more despotic than monarchy, more insolent than autocracy, more selfish than bureaucracy. I see in the near future a crisis approaching that unnerves me and causes me to tremble for the safety of my country. Corporations have been enthroned, an era of corruption in high places will follow, and the money power of the country will endeavor to prolong its REIGN by working upon the prejudices of the people until the wealth is aggregated in a few hands and the Republic is destroyed. President Abraham Lincoln after the National Banking Act of 1863 was passed.
The Fall of Babylon
One of the most self-evident proofs, of the instability of the Babylonian system, is the constant cycle of economic booms and busts. All throughout human history there have been periods of economic progress followed by periods of economic depression. In stock market te these different periods are called ‘bull’ and ‘bear’ markets. In modern times, attempts have been made to recreate the lexicon, and to minimise the obvious nature of this economic cycle, by re-defining economic terms. Thus, ‘usury’ becomes ‘interest’ – ‘depression’ becomes ‘recession’ – ‘money printing’ becomes ‘quantitative easing’ etc. etc.
As history progresses these cycles tend to become more frequent, expansive and destructive. There will be a final global, complete and devastating collapse, heralding the final fall of Babylon. This world-wide collapse is so calamitous that it enters into Bible prophecy and is the main focus of chapter 18 of Revelation. When Babylon falls, one of the classes of people who mourn her the most are the ‘merchants of the earth’ because they lose their power, their wealth and their livelihoods:
For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies. Rev. 18:3
And the merchants of the earth shall weep and mourn over her; for no man buyeth their merchandise any more… Rev. 18:11.
And the fruits that thy soul lusted after are departed from thee, and all things which were dainty and goodly are departed from thee, and thou shalt find them no more at all. The merchants of these things, which were made rich by her, shall stand afar off for the fear of her torment, weeping and wailing, and saying, Alas, alas that great city, that was clothed in fine linen, and purple, and scarlet, and decked with gold, and precious stones, and pearls! For in one hour so great riches is come to nought. And every shipmaster, and all the company in ships, and sailors, and as many as trade by sea, stood afar off, and cried when they saw the smoke of her burning, saying, What city is like unto this great city! And they cast dust on their heads, and cried, weeping and wailing, saying, Alas, alas that great city, wherein were made rich all that had ships in the sea by reason of her costliness! for in one hour is she made desolate. Rev. 18:14-19.
One of the reasons why these ‘merchants’ are so besides themselves with grief, is not just because they have lost everything, it is because they are an integral part of the composition of Babylon. They do not exist and operate as sovereign independent individuals, owning their own businesses and operating under their own supervision. No! they are integrated into Babylon, like an arm is integrated into a body. They are a part of the composite beast, they are owned by Babylon. Bible prophecy is short and concise, but it is so revealing:
Rejoice over her, thou heaven, and ye holy apostles and prophets; for God hath avenged you on her. And a mighty angel took up a stone like a great millstone, and cast it into the sea, saying, Thus, with violence shall that great city Babylon be thrown down, and shall be found no more at all. And the voice of harpers, and musicians, and of pipers, and trumpeters, shall be heard no more at all in thee; and no craftsman, of whatsoever craft he be, shall be found any more in thee; and the sound of a millstone shall be heard no more at all in thee; and the light of a candle shall shine no more at all in thee; and the voice of the bridegroom and of the bride shall be heard no more at all in thee: for thy merchants were the great men of the earth; for by thy sorceries were all nations deceived. Rev. 18:20-23.
The financial and economic powers of the earth are called ‘thy merchants.’ In other words, prophecy tells us that these corporations, institutions and individuals belong to Babylon. They are part of Babylon. This is partly why John ‘wondered’ with amazement at what he saw. He saw what was constructed and arrayed against the church, that he had helped established. He saw the many component parts and he saw how it was all integrated into one gigantic edifice, dedicated to the destruction of God’s people.
The Root of all Evil
God does not condemn wealth. Scripture even tells us that God gives us the ‘power’ to create wealth (see Deut. 8:17, 18). And there are many verses, in Scripture, promising wealth to the righteous people of God. Abraham and Job, are two examples of God’s righteous, who were wealthy. God does not condemn wealth, but He does have concerns about how wealth is used. Jesus said, “Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and all these things will be added unto you.” In other words, righteousness is more important than wealth. God can only trust those who are righteous with wealth.
Conversely, there is he, who claims to have control over the earth and he promises to give control and wealth to whoever will worship him (see Lu. 4:6). Many take up his offer, because they love money. Therefore, the love of money becomes the root of all evil:
But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness. 1 Tim. 6:9-11.
The ‘great merchants of the earth’ join forces with Babylon, because they love money and they participate in all the evil that is perpetrated upon the earth. And that evil is very great:
And after these things I saw another angel come down from heaven, having great power; and the earth was lightened with his glory. And he cried mightily with a strong voice, saying, Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird. And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues. For her sins have reached unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities. Rev. 18:1-5.
And in her was found the blood of prophets, and of saints, and of all that were slain upon the earth. Rev. 18:24.
The Bible tells the same stories in different ways. The apostle James was also shown the fate of all those who love money more than righteousness. He saw what John saw, that because of their evil and injustice, they would lose everything, that they had criminally gained:
Go to now, ye rich men, weep and howl for your miseries that shall come upon you. Your riches are corrupted, and your garments are motheaten. Your gold and silver is cankered; and the rust of them shall be a witness against you, and shall eat your flesh as it were fire. Ye have heaped treasure together for the last days. Behold, the hire of the labourers who have reaped down your fields, which is of you kept back by fraud, crieth: and the cries of them which have reaped are entered into the ears of the Lord of sabaoth. Ye have lived in pleasure on the earth, and been wanton; ye have nourished your hearts, as in a day of slaughter. Ye have condemned and killed the just; and he doth not resist you. James 5:1-6.
Revelation 18, is about the ‘day of slaughter’ all those who succumb to the alluring ‘wine of her fornication’ and her ‘sorcery,’ all those who pursued the love of money, all those who refused to come out of Babylon, share in the plagues that come upon Babylon, and they suffer the wrath of the people of the world, because in the day of her judgement, the scales fall from their eyes.
The enemy works by compartmentalisation. It is the same system that is used by military and intelligence agencies. The beast is a composite beast. This means that Babylon is divided up into components. Each component works upon its assignments, oblivious to the fact that there are other components working on other assignments, that eventually dovetail together. Only the top echelons in each component understand the plans and purpose. It is because of this compartmentalizing that the vast majority of people cannot ‘see’ Babylon for what it is. However, Bible prophecy exposes the huge edifice that it is, for those who have ‘ears to hear.’’