Saturday, 1 December 2012

YHWH & The Failed Prophecy Of Babylon !!!

Famous Firdos Square In Iraq
                                                         


        “Babylon…shall be as when God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah. It shall never be inhabited, neither shall it be dwelt in from generation to generation: neither shall the Arabian pitch tent there; neither shall the shepherds make a fold there. But wild beasts of the desert shall lie there;…and satyrs shall dance there…and her time is near to come, and her days shall not be prolonged.”   - Isaiah 13:19-22, Jeremiah 50:39-40.
         Obviously, there has never been a time since Isaiah that Babylon (modern Iraq) was uninhabited. People lived there during New Testament times according to Matthew 1:11-12, 17, Acts 7:43, and I Peter 5:13; and it is still inhabited today. Arabians still visit there, shepherds still make their folds there, and Iraq has never been known for its dancing satyrs.

1.Isaiah noted that Babylon would be destroyed by God. He would cause the Medes to lead a coalition of nations against the city, destroying it in bloody warfare. This event would secure the release of God's people from their oppressors (Isa 13:1-22; 14:22).

2. Isaiah's staement, "Its time is close at hand and its days will not be prolonged," suggests that he was not envisioning a slow economic decline of Babylon beginning ca. 305 BCE under the Seleucids and extending to the 1st century CE, when the last cuneiform clay tablets were composed honoring the city's gods.

3. Isaiah understood that upon Babylon's destruction by God, that his people would be freed from their Babylonian oppressor and that Israel would would "take captive their captors." Israel/Judah NEVER took "captive" the Babylonians, even after their release from the Babylonian Captivity by Cyrus in 539 BCE.

4. Isa 21: 2, 9
Go up, O Elam, and lay siege O Media...Fallen, fallen is Babylon; and all the images of her gods he has shattered to the ground."
Babylon's gods were not destroyed and tumbled to the ground and shattered by battle-crazed enemy warriors. Babylon peacefully surrendered in 539 BCE to Cyrus the Persian (not to a Median lead coalition, Cyrus having defeated and absorbed the Median empire ca. 560 BCE).

According to a clay cylinder narrating the fall of the city (called the Cyrus Cylinder), Cyrus made a great show of respecting and honoring Babylon's gods, even asking for their blessing on him and his son as the new rulers of Babylon. Marduk's hand was held by Cyrus and later his son as part of the swearing in ceremonies for Babylonian kings !

Isa 43:14, 47:1-15

"
For your sake I will send to Babylon and break down all the bars, and the shouting of the Chaldeans will be turned into lamentations."
No gate bars were broken down by Cyrus. The gates were opened in peace, welcoming him as a saviour. There were no lamentations over dead Babylonian warriors within the city or widows and slain children.

"The Nabonidus Chronicle confirms that Ugbaru (Gubaru) and his troops entered Babylon without a battle on October 12th. Cyrus himself did not enter the city until October 29th. The inhabitants of Babylon greeted Cyrus not as a conqueror but as a liberator, and spread green branches before him." (p.87, Yamauchi)

Isa 47:1-11
"Come down and sit in the dust, O virgin daughter of Babylon; sit on the ground without a throne, O daughter of the Chaldeans !...I will take vengenace, and I will spare no man. Our Redeemer -the Lord of Hosts is his name-...you shall no more be called mistress of kingdoms...These two things shall come to you in a moment, in one day; the loss of children and widowhood shall come upon you in full measure...disaster shall fall upon you...and ruin shall come on you suddenly..."


Isaiah appears to be saying that IN ONE DAY -in a moment- disaster will strike the city, she shall be in ruin. This prophecy was unfulfilled. Babylon did not experience "disaster," i.e., slain residents, breached walls, broken-in gates, houses on fire by looting enemy warriors. 


Robert Mascharan !!!

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