I read in the Bible about a vision Zechariah had. Although it’s nothing to laugh about, I have to admit that I chuckled when I read it. My imagination had fun with this one. I pictured a naughty woman sitting in a huge wicker basket. She tries to climb out of it. She reaches the top and you can only see her hands holding on and her eyes peeking above the rim. She pulls herself up and swings her leg over the side. Just as she does this, a big hand reaches down and pushes her back in the basket and slams the lid down.
I’m not sure what this story is about. I’ll let you read it for yourself and maybe you’ll have a few ideas for me. I’ll let you know what I think, but I’ve come to no definite conclusions yet.
Zechariah 5:5-11 Then the angel who was speaking to me came forward and said to me, “Look up and see what is appearing.”
I asked, “What is it?”
He replied, “It is a basket.” And he added. “This is the iniquity of the people throughout the land.”
Then the cover of lead was raised, and there in the basket sat a woman! He said, “This is wickedness,” and he pushed her back into the basket and pushed its lead cover down on it.
Then I looked up – and there before me were two women, with the wind in their wings! They had wings like those of a stork, and they lifted up the basket between heaven and earth.
“Where are they taking the basket?” I asked the angel who was speaking to me.
He replied, “To the country of Babylonia to build a house for it. When the house is ready, the basket will be set there in its place.”
Okay. To try to figure this out we first have to look at Babylonia. It’s mentioned quite often in the Bible. In the Old Testament, Babylonia was a powerful empire that lasted a long time. The city of Babylon was its’ capital. It was an evil city known for indulging in idolatry and sexual sins. They also held the Israelites in captivity. All this didn’t please God and eventually Babylon was destroyed. In spite of efforts in the 1970’s to revive it, it’s still in ruins.
The next time period I would like to take you to is the first century when the early Christians were being persecuted. They were afraid of the Roman officials and didn’t want to use the name “Rome” in their letters in case they were intercepted by the Roman soldiers. They would refer to Rome as Babylon.
Another prominent place Babylon is mentioned is in Revelation, Chapter 17, 18 and 19. It talks about a woman sitting on a beast and on her forehead is written, “Babylon the Great. The Mother of Prostitutes and of the Abominations of the Earth.” A voice from heaven says “Come out of her, my people.” This prophecy lets us know that in the future, this Babylon will be destroyed. This hasn’t happened yet.
So, which Babylon is this referring to? Some think that the old city of Babylon will be rebuilt and it will be destroyed. (Babylon was located in the country that we now call Iraq).
Some think Babylon is referring to Rome or the Vatican.
I’ve even heard some people claim it’s New York City. When you start to read the description of Babylon in Revelation 18: 21-24, it does sound like it could be New York City, but it’s not. Verse 24 says that in her was found the blood of the prophets and of God’s holy people. The United States has always had religious freedom. The future Babylon will be a city or group of people who have persecuted the prophets and God’s holy people.
Revelation 18 vs. 4 says “Come out of her, my people.” This kind of haunts me. It’s a warning to God’s people, but since I’m not positive what or where Babylon is, how can we warn them?
The angel replied that they were taking the basket to Babylon to build a house for it. Hmmm. Is the house already built? It could be. Is Babylon already set up? Or is the old city of Babylon going to be rebuilt? I don’t know.
When the house is ready, the basket will be set there. The next question would be “why?”
Is the woman (wickedness) going to be released there? I hope not!
There’s another section in the bible that could be connected to the above, but I’m not sure. Let me know what you think.
2 Thessalonians 2: 7-8 For the secret power of lawlessness is already at work; but the one who now holds it back will continue to do so till he is taken out of the way.
The bible mentions “it” being held back. Is this “wickedness” or the Antichrist or something else that’s being held back?
Is “the hand” that shoved wickedness back into the basket representing the one who is holding lawlessness (wickedness) back? Chapter 2 in 2 Thessalonians makes it sound like things are being restrained until the Man of Lawlessness (the Antichrist) is to be revealed.
Is this woman, wickedness, what’s being restrained?
Questions, questions, questions.
What do you think?