All through sacred history, the Lord constantly had to deal with those who fell into idolatry and other forms of false worship (see Matt. 4:8-10). In the final crisis as depicted in Revelation chapter 13, the issue of worship will again arise. Here, too, God’s people will have to make a choice about whom they will worship and serve (see Josh. 24:15).
In week 2, in the lesson titled “Daniel and the End Time”, we studied the story of three Hebrew boys who were ordered to “worship the golden image” (Dan. 3:5). We saw, too, how Revelation chapter 13 uses language from that chapter in depicting the persecution that God’s people will face in the end times. That is, we may see what happened in Daniel chapter 3 as a precursor to what will happen in the last days, as depicted in the immediate context of the beast powers in Revelation chapter 13. All were commanded to worship the golden image, or they would be put to death in a fiery furnace. Similarly, in Revelation chapter 13, whoever “would not worship the image of the beast [is] to be killed” (Rev. 13:15, NKJV) .
Babylon has always been the capital of false worship. The Tower of Babel testified to its builders’ desire, like Lucifer, to “ascend above the heights of the clouds” (Isa. 14:14) as well as to efforts to save themselves in case of another global deluge. Thus, they refused to believe God’s promise never to bring another flood upon the earth (Gen. 9:8-11) .
The neo-Babylonian Empire likewise exalted the work of human hands. Nebuchadnezzar extolled “this great Babylon, that I have built” (Dan. 4:30) . Later, King Belshazzar took the golden cups of Solomon’s temple for a feast, and “they drank wine, and praised the gods of gold and silver, bronze and iron, wood and stone” (Dan. 5:3-4, NKJV) . Notice that the true vessels of the temple were filled with intoxicating wine and deadened the sensibility of all who drank from them. As a result, many in the city perished when Babylon fell. An outward appearance of truth can deceive us by disguising the deadly “wine of Babylon”. False worship and false ideas are the currency of Satan’s kingdom.
|How can we make sure we aren’t involved in any false worship now?|