Tuesday: Drying Up the Euphrates River
Read Revelation 16:12 along with Revelation 17:1 and Revelation 17:15. What does the symbol of the Euphrates stand for? What is the significance of the drying up of the Euphrates in the context of the seven last plagues?
In the Old Testament, the Euphrates was a critical means of support for Israel’s enemies, Assyria and Babylon. The river flowed through Babylon and was important to the city because it nourished crops and provided water for people. Babylon could not survive without the Euphrates.
Revelation 17:1 describes end-time Babylon as sitting upon many waters, perhaps a reference to the Euphrates (Jer. 51:13). Revelation 17:15 explains that the waters upon which end-time Babylon sits represent the people who support it: the worldwide civil, secular, and political powers behind the system. However, these powers eventually will retract their support.
The scene of the sixth plague reflects the capture of ancient Babylon by Cyrus the Persian (see Daniel 5). According to the ancient historian Herodotus, on the night that King Belshazzar and his officials had a feast, the Persians diverted the Euphrates and entered Babylon along the riverbed, taking the city by surprise.
The symbolic drying up of the Euphrates in Revelation 16:12 results in the collapse of Babylon in the end time. Because the Euphrates in Revelation represents the world’s civil, secular, and political powers giving their support to Babylon, the drying up of the Euphrates symbolizes the withdrawal of their support and their subsequent attack against Babylon, thereby causing its downfall.
As the people of the world witness the upheaval in nature (Rev. 16:3-9), they turn to Babylon for protection. However, as the fifth plague strikes the seat of Babylon’s authority (Rev. 16:10-11), they see the futility of seeking help there. Feeling deceived, they turn against Babylon, causing her downfall (Rev. 17:16). Yet, as we have seen, their hearts remain hard against God and His people. As such, they become fertile soil for the final deception by which Satan will draw the world to unite against God’s people to wipe them off the face of the earth.
|In what ways have you learned how risky it is to place your trust in humans and in human institutions?|
Babylon, the ancient city, was dependent on the network of rivers known as the Euphrates, and consequently, any drying up of the Euphrates spelled the end of Babylon. Daniel 5 records the events surrounding the last days of Babylon. Perhaps, significant to this discussion, we read of Belshazzar's debauched feast where he made fun of his Jewish captives by taking the temple vessels and drinking from them. This is where the writing:
It is rather ironic that Belshazzar has to swallow his sardonic pride and get Daniel, a Jew to translate for him:
Daniel records that Belshazzar was killed that night and that Babylon fell soon after.
Significantly, the fall of Babylon was associated with an event making fun of God.
I have often thought about the many non-religious people and wondered how they fit into the end-time scenario. Adventists have traditionally seen a two-sided battle; those who worship the true God, and those who follow the beast and its image. Perhaps that is too simplistic a picture and maybe those who are non-religious and mock those who worship God are included in this picture of the drying up of the Euphrates River. Could it represent the time when they recognize that there is a God after all and their mockery has been in vain? Just a thought to add to the mix.
(Just to make sure that we don't misquote history: Herodotus, an ancient historian, is often quoted with a story about how Cyrus diverted the irrigation waters from a channel that went through Babylon and entered the city underneath the gates on the channel. Nowadays it is generally accepted that this was not the case and that the fall of Babylon was a bit more spread out than that. It is thought that Belshazzar was killed by his own guards.)
If the waters represent people, as I believe Revelation does indicate. Thus, all who have rejected God are part of this drying up. That is, due to the sufferings of the first four plagues, and then finding darkness in the authority of the Babylon system, they withdraw support. It seems the most natural meaning of the passage. I think the mocking ones are part of those that follow the beast and the image. At least that is how I understand it. Good "thought to add to the mix." Thank you for prodding us to think.
In an attempt to think about your thought concerning non-believers in the drying of the Euphrates, I have thought of them as being a part of those marshaled against God's law and His people before the close of probation. They are in the class gathered by the unclean spirit from the mouth of the dragon (Rev. 16:13). Do they support the papacy in any way at the moment, I believe yes. Accordingly, all roads against God lead to the Vatican - whether in the secular, political or religious world.
When a person at last discovers how he has been deceived by someone he trusted!
God wiĺl dry up the powers of Babylon defences. The city built on lies Will collapse.
Just as Cyrus turned the waters out of the channel, men and nations Will turn in fierce anger against Babylon for being lost.
But it Will be too late to be saved. The Euphrates this time Will be dried up for someone more superior than the anointed Cyrus to pass. Isaiah 45:1.
Somebody greater than Cyrus is coming. Be ready.
Remember you and I Will stand on one side or the other in that final battle.
Finally the civil authorities, and the people in general will discover that Roman Catholic papacy through its intrigues of electing and deposing world leaders has been deceiving them all this time!
Rev 17:12 tells us that they now HATE the harlot, and make her desolate and naked. But it is too late. Great controversy chapter 39, 40.
By this realization ensures that Papacy (syncretism of church and state) loses support completely, and sets the stage for the final battle of Armageddon, whose climax will be fought on the 7th plague.
The same angel who pours the plague on River Euphrates comes back in Rev 17:1 to give more details on what the drying up means,and goes into deep details in this chapter.
Did you notice that this was not the first time Euphrates dried up? Other incidences are in Rev 12 and 13. But it sure is the last time!
I am to present lesson 12 next week and was surfing the net looking for resources. I found that the Euphrates is in the process of drying up right now! And that there has been a massive fish kill as seen in Australia recently! Godbless today, Mrs A Stolz. Source –
Uow! Tanx Mrs Stolz! That's crazy but true! Sometimes we are far from news like that which are literally connected to what we've been studied. Masses of people can change quickly when terror stickes. Mankind has been destroying nature's perfect balance without any restraint and soon has its payback! Evil just piles up to more evil! And its natural course is chaos! On the orther side, God has the answer to the chosen downfall of human trash! He loves us so much that gave us His only Son so we could have the chance to follow a different course! Thank you again for your search! I'll certainly share that in Class!
I see the wicked in this plague showing a withdrawal of support. It is true, though, that the authorities among the people do turn on Babylon and burn her with fire. So there is the turning on Babylon as well as a withdrawal of support.
Those who follow tradition those who say I was born into it so I am not leaving will see the truth and wish they had made a different choice only to find it is too late will withdraw their support.
I would love to learn more about this.
What an awesome study about the Euphrates River. God's word is TRUE...I love him so much!