Monday, July 11, 2011

Is Dubai the Babylon of Revelation?

Burj Dubai by Joi Ito
Babylon's Tower of Babel?
Ancient Babylon existed in what is now modern Iraq, on the banks of the Euphrates River. The future city of Babylon described in the biblical book of Revelation will be a resurrected version of her, but there is debate over where this fantastical metropolis will be.

Revelation 17:3-5 (NIV) pictures the city figuratively as a woman sitting on a beast in the sea, but verse nine's reference to her location on seven hills indicates she will be a literal place. Some theorize this biblical city could be the grand metropolis of Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates.

Babylon in the Last Days

Revelation 17:1 (NIV) says Babylon will "sit on many waters," and Revelation 18:19 (NIV) states that "all who have ships on the sea will become rich through her wealth." Clearly, Babylon will have access to sea ports. Dubai is perched on "many waters," including the Persian Gulf, the Strait of Hormuz and the Indian Ocean. The Euphrates River of old Babylon is 500 miles away, accessible through Gulf waters. Dubai is also extending its real estate by creating residential islands in the Persian Gulf, more evidence of existing "on many waters." Hazel Wong, an architect for Dubai, said, “Local property firms are constructing man-made islands and canals which will double Dubai’s coastline and further assure its big-bucks allure bringing water into the desert while building the land into the ocean.”

Revelation 17:3-5 (NIV) depicts Babylon as a richly and royally dressed woman, glittering with gold, precious stones and pearls. She wears purple and scarlet, like that worn by royalty and the wealthy in Bible times.

After her destruction, the Bible says that people will say, "Was there ever a city like this great city?" (Revelation 18:18, NIV) Many cities in the world are rich, but Dubai’s burgeoning extravagance is unparalleled. Luxury Travel, an exclusive travel agency for the very wealthy, promotes Dubai City because of its "numerous opulent hotels, towering attractions, peerless shopping, stunning entertainment and commercial opportunities." Luxury Travel also says "vast investment in luxury golf and entertainment resorts - such as Dubailand and Dubai Golf City - means the city is set for even more dramatic growth as a prestige destination."

Dubai, Revelation and Babylon

The worldwide trade of Babylon is demonstrated in Revelation 18:11 (NIV) by the phrase "merchants of the earth" and verse seventeen says that those affected by her are "every sea captain, and all who travel by ship, the sailors, and all who earn their living from the sea." All kinds of things are sold in Babylon's markets, including precious metals and gems, silk and scarlet cloth, ivory, costly wood, iron and marble, spices, wine, olive oil, grains, animals, cars and even people. At her destruction, all the merchants of the earth will weep and mourn. They will watch her burn, even as the world’s great men, merchants from across the globe, despair. (Revelation 18:15-19, NIV)

Dubai’s far-reaching trade is already legendary. “There is presently no city [on earth] that could compel all the kings and merchants of the earth to do business with it… and whose kings and merchants will weep and mourn at her destruction," says Pastor Walter James Taylor, Founding Pastor of Livermore Valley Worship Center. "I strongly suggest that there is one under construction across the gulf from the land of Shinar, which by far and away will become (at least physically) the finest city on the earth, bar none, and one who I also strongly suggest that Satan is constructing for his man – the Antichrist. This city is Dubai.”

Last Days and Babylon

The future Babylon will have international influence, as Revelation 17:2 (NIV) mentions Babylon's alliance with "the kings of the earth" and verse fifteen says she will sit among "peoples, multitudes, nations and languages." Revelation 18:3 (NIV) indicates that "all the nations will drink the maddening wine of her adulteries" and "the kings of the earth will commit adultery with her," along with "the merchants of the earth" who will grow rich from her "excessive luxuries." Dubai is already recognized as an international Emirate, with 81% of its residents expatriates, according to UAE Interact. A total of 300 islands in the shape of a world map are being developed off the coast at a cost of 14 billion, with individual island price tags averaging 15-50 million for the world’s tycoons to purchase.

Revelation 17:6 (NIV) shows the disciple John, the author of the book of Revelation, astonished at the disturbing vision of Babylon represented by the prostitute and the beast. An angel then proceeds to explain to him in the next six verses who she was. He said the seven heads on the beast are seven hills on which the city will sit, and they are also seven kings. The United Arab Emirates is composed of seven sheikdoms or kingdoms: Abu Dhabi (the federal capital), Sharjah, Ajman, Umm Al Quwain, Ras Al Khaimah, Fujairah and of course, Dubai. Is this number seven only a coincidence? Perhaps, but there is no denying that beyond the number, Dubai has uncanny similarities to the extravagant city of Babylon in the Bible's last book of Revelation.

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  1. Was given this thought about 2 years ago and have had so many people reject it. I'm glad to have a little lift today as I read this. If this is true we are not far from His return.

  2. It is fun to speculate.

    The most obvious city to be Babylon would be Rome, as John describes it as "that great city, which reigneth over the kings of the earth." During the first century, this was certainly true of Rome. Also, Rome is known for having seven hills. In Early Rome, they were called Cermalus, Cispius, Fagutal, Oppius, Palatium, Sucusa and Velia.

    Later Rome named them Aventinus (Aventine), Caelius (Caelian), Capitolium (Capitoline), Esquiliae (Esquiline), Palatium (Palatine), Quirinalis (Quirinal) and Viminalis (Viminal).

  3. Las 7 colinas es una traduccion incorrecta de 7 montes.Monte en la biblia significa reino por ejemplo en Daniel capitulo:2.DUBAI esta sentada sobre 7 emiratos o reinos.Esta en el desierto:apocalipsis 17:3.

  4. Not only is the entire premise of your entire article absurd, it is simply factually wrong. I think you just enjoy embracing your Islamophobic tendencies.

    A) Dubai is not on many waters, it is simply on the Persian Gulf

    B) The pastor your quote is an idiot, Dubai is not the capital of the UAE

    C) Dubai actually has fairly limited trade, certainly not "already legendary trade", and it has very limited international influence

  5. My readers are welcome to disagree with me.

  6. I disagree but I don't feel the need to bash you. As a Muslim I didn't really catch any hint of Islamphobia in what you said, so I don't know what that person is talking about.

  7. Islam was created by the Roman Catholic Church. The Roman Catholic Church and the Jesuits are behind everything. UAE could very well be the new Babylon... the riches of the rich have property there and the most expensive structures in the world are there including the tallest building by far in the world. Also, it fits the seven kings... Rome does not have seven kings of the seven hills, but UAE has seven kings of the seven kingdoms... also, Dubai does sit in many waters. They are actually creating islands hahaha. Again.... ISLAM was created by the Roman Catholic Church... The RCC (which Islam follows ignorantly) is the whore and Babylon could very well be Dubai... sounds very possible to me.

  8. I agree, it's obvious where all the money is shifting to, the elites will spend their last days in Dubai.