A SNARE FOR BABYLON
God sets a snare for Babylon and Babylon is caught. "I have laid a snare for thee, and thou art also
taken, O Babylon, and thou wast not aware: thou art found, and also caught, because thou hast striven
against the Lord." (Jer. 50:24).

Babylon has both a historic and an end time fulfillment. Historic Babylon was a city on the plain of Shinar
which was built on both banks of the Euphrates river. God set a snare for historic Babylon. The
Babylonians took the children of Israel to Babylon to be slaves and servants. They also took all the gold
and brass from the temple.

"And he carried out thence all the treasures of the house of the Lord, and the treasures of the king’s
house, and cut in pieces all the vessels of gold which Solomon king of Israel had made in the temple of
the Lord, as the Lord had said.  And he carried away all Jerusalem, and all the princes, and all the mighty
men of valour, even ten thousand captives, and all the craftsmen and smiths: none remained, save the
poorest sort of the people of the land." (2 Kings 24:13,14). Babylon invaded Jerusalem again and this
time they took the replacement vessels of gold. "And the firepans, and the bowls, and such things as
were of gold, in gold, and of silver, in silver, the captain of the guard took away." (2 Kings 25:15).

The prophet Daniel was a child when he was taken to Babylon, but the grace of God caused Daniel to
become a prophet to the king of Babylon. (See Dan. 2.) The Jews were to be released after 70 years, but
a new ruler had arisen who ignored Daniel. This king, Belshazzar, brought the temple vessels from the
storehouse and profaned them.

"Belshazzar the king made a great feast to a thousand of his lords, and drank wine before the thousand.
Belshazzar, whiles he tasted the wine, commanded to bring the golden and silver vessels which his
father Nebuchadnezzar had taken out of the temple which was in Jerusalem; that the king, and his
princes, his wives, and his concubines, might drink therein. Then they brought the golden vessels that
were taken out of the temple of the house of God which was at Jerusalem; and the king, and his princes,
his wives, and his concubines, drank in them. They drank wine, and praised the gods of gold, and of
silver, of brass, of iron, of wood, and of stone. In the same hour came forth fingers of a man’s hand, and
wrote over against the candlestick upon the plaister of the wall of the king’s palace: and the king saw
the part of the hand that wrote." (Dan. 5:1-5).

Belshazzar was very distressed by the handwriting on the wall, but none of his wise men could explain
the words. Finally, his queen suggested Daniel and Daniel explained the message. "O thou king, the
most high God gave Nebuchadnezzar thy father a kingdom, and majesty, and glory, and honour: but when
his heart was lifted up, and his mind hardened in pride, he was deposed from his kingly throne, and they
took his glory from him: and thou his son, O Belshazzar, hast not humbled thine heart, though thou
knewest all this; but hast lifted up thyself against the Lord of heaven; and they have brought the vessels
of His house before thee, and thou, and thy lords, thy wives, and thy concubines, have drunk wine in
them; and thou hast praised the gods of silver, and gold, of brass, iron, wood, and stone, which see not,
nor hear, nor know: and the God in whose hand thy breath is, and whose are all thy ways, hast thou not
glorified: then was the part of the hand sent from Him; and this writing was written. And this is the writing
that was written, MENE, MENE, TEKEL, UPHARSIN. This is the interpretation of the thing: MENE; God hath
numbered thy kingdom, and finished it. TEKEL; Thou art weighed in the balances, and art found wanting.  
PERES; Thy kingdom is divided, and given to the Medes and Persians. In that night was Belshazzar the
king of the Chaldeans (the people of the country surrounding Babylon) slain. And Darius the Median took
the kingdom, being about threescore and two years old." (Dan. 5:18,20,22-28,30,31).

The Babylonians stole from God and blasphemed God. They were snared and taken, overthrown by the
Medes and the Persians. When the 70 years ended, Cyrus, the king of Persia, returned the captives of
Jerusalem to the Holy Land to rebuild the temple. (See Ezra 1.)

But Babylon falls twice, once in history, once in the end-time. "And after these things I saw another angel
come down from heaven, having great power; and the earth was lightened with his glory. And he cried
mightily with a strong voice, saying,
Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of
devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird. For all nations
have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed
fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her
delicacies. And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not
partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues." (Rev. 18:1-4).

Historic Babylon no longer exists. The next question, who or what is end time Babylon? My answer is the
answer given by V. T. Houteff. First,""Babylon personifies the forthcoming
ecclesiastical-political-
economic system of the nations
, not some institution or organization; second, that the beast she drives
is a figure of her dominion; and third, that it is about to pass from prophecy into history -- indeed, is
already beginning to loom up out of the haze as did the shores of America to Christopher Columbus and
his companions as they approached the great Western Continent."

""The beast's being driven by the woman, Babylon clearly reveals three important truths: first, that the
call of God's people to come out of Babylon (Rev. 18:4), is a call for them to come out from among the
nations that are symbolized by the beast which she is driving (ruling); second, that the called ones are to
come out from her sin-filled dominion because it is to be ruined by the plagues; and third, their coming
out necessitates their going into a place where sin does not exist and where there is no danger of the
plagues' falling.  Thus their coming out of her dominion must be their going into God's kingdom."" (V. T.
Houteff, "The World Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow," 1941, p. 36).

End time Babylon is an
ecclesiastical-political-economic system of the nations. Its ecclesiastical arm is an
international conspiracy of Satan's clergy to hide the ceremonies God prescribed in the Bible behind a
false Sabbath and false Feast Days, to hide the Kingdom of God prophecies and to hide the prophecies
of the Second Coming of Christ. (This keeps the saints mingled with the sinners and is a protection to
the wicked.) The conspiracy's political arm is the United Nations, an ineffectual body that puts a band-aid
on the continuing strife of the nations, genocide and starvation. (Does anyone actually believe that
things are getting better?) The conspiracy's economic arm is a system that destroys markets and is
designed to make the few obscenely rich while impoverishing the many. Every time a job is shipped
overseas, a consumer is lost as well. (Does it matter how cheap goods are if no one can afford to buy
them?) This whole ecclesiastical-political-economic system of the nations flies under the flag of
stabilizing and unifying the world. President Bush called it the New World Order. Its opponents call it the
One World Government.

What Houteff saw "beginning to loom up out of the haze" during his ministry (which ended over 50 years
ago), is an actuality NOW. I say that because Babylon has been snared again. "I have laid a snare for
thee, and thou art also taken, O Babylon, and thou wast not aware: thou art found, and also caught,
because thou hast striven against the Lord." (Jer. 50:24). Now end-time Babylon has striven against the
Lord.

The fall of ancient Babylon is the type of the fall of end time Babylon. That means that the fall of ancient
Babylon set the pattern (the type) for the fall of end time Babylon (the antitype). Because the two falls are
type and antitype, there will be marked similarities in both series of events. "Now all these things
happened unto them for ensamples (examples): and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the
ends of the world are come." (1 Cor. 10:11). This is the scripture on which the concept of type and
antitype rests. The similarities between type events and antitype events allow us to verify that prophecy
has been fulfilled. The series of events need not be perfectly identical, simply they should be markedly
similar.

Ancient Babylon robbed God twice. This scripture gives details of the first robbery. "And
Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came against the city, and his servants did besiege it. And Jehoiachin
the king of Judah went out to the king of Babylon, he, and his mother, and his servants, and his princes,
and his officers: and the king of Babylon took him in the eighth year of his reign. And he (the king of
Babylon) carried out thence all the treasures of the house of the Lord, and the treasures of the king’s
house, and cut in pieces all the vessels of gold which Solomon king of Israel had made in the temple of
the Lord, as the Lord had said. And he carried away all Jerusalem, and all the princes, and all the mighty
men of valour, even ten thousand captives, and all the craftsmen and smiths: none remained, save the
poorest sort of the people of the land." (2 Kings 24:11-14).   

This parallels the land ripoff and tithe theft from the Davidian church in the 1960s. In the antitype, the
leadership of the One World Government sought to rob the church, "Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon
came against the city." It has been thought that the conspiracy to steal the wealth of the church started
with Florence Houteff Eakin, but the type says it started outside the church. However she and her
executive council and their followers soon joined the conspiracy, "and Jehoiachin the king of Judah
went out to the king of Babylon, he, and his mother, and his servants, and his princes, and his officers."

The wealth of the church was stripped by the conspiracy, "he (the king of Babylon) carried out thence all
the treasures of the house of the Lord, and the treasures of the king’s house, and cut in pieces all the
vessels of gold which Solomon king of Israel had made in the temple of the Lord." Initially, in 1962, the
conspiracy sold 92% of the property (864 acres) and took the tithe (over $170,000) which was in the hands
of Florence Houteff Eakin and her executive council, "all the treasures of the house of the Lord, and the
treasures of the king’s house." (Also see Ben Roden's tract "The Flying Roll," page 5 and following.)

The last 77 acres was put in receivership because some church members still lived on the property. All
the members who accepted the conspiracy split the money and went to California, "and he carried away
all Jerusalem, and all the princes, and all the mighty men of valour, even ten thousand captives, and all
the craftsmen and smiths: none remained, save the poorest sort of the people of the land." Those
dissolving the church wanted to sell the last 77 acres, those continuing the church wanted the 864 acres
that had been sold and church's money back. The case went to trial in 1966, but there was no redress for
those continuing the church, the court confirmed the loss of tithe and land and ruled that the last 77
acres must be sold. It hardly needs to be said that the poor people left in Jerusalem had no redress
against the king of Babylon either. In 1973, Ben, Lois and George Roden repurchased the 77 acres for
the Branch Davidian church.

The second time ancient Babylon robbed God, they destroyed Jerusalem. These scriptures give the
details. "And the king of Babylon made Mattaniah his father’s brother king in his stead, and changed his
name to Zedekiah. For through the anger of the Lord it came to pass in Jerusalem and Judah, until he
had cast them out from his presence, that Zedekiah rebelled against the king of Babylon." (2 Kings 24:
17,24). The One World Government raised up Vernon Howell to be the leader of the Branch Davidian
church, and he changed his name to David Koresh with the help of the courts, "the king of Babylon made
Mattaniah his father’s brother king in his stead, and changed his name to Zedekiah." David Koresh took
underage girls to be his polygamous wives, embarrassing and outraging his fellow conspirators,
"Zedekiah rebelled against the king of Babylon."

In consequence, the One World Government moved against Koresh. "And it came to pass in the ninth
year of his reign, in the tenth month, in the tenth day of the month, that Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon
came, he, and all his host, against Jerusalem, and pitched against it: and they built forts against it round
about. And the city was broken up, and all the men of war fled by night by the way of the gate between
two walls, which is by the king’s garden: (now the Chaldees were against the city round about:) and the
king went the way toward the plain. And he burnt the house of the Lord, and the king’s house, and all the
houses of Jerusalem, and every great man’s house burnt he with fire. Now the rest of the people that
were left in the city, and the fugitives that fell away to the king of Babylon, with the remnant of the
multitude, did Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard carry away." (2 Kings 25:1,4,9,11).

First the ATF, then the FBI came against Koresh, they surrounded his church with sandbagged sniper
posts and patrolled the property in tanks, "Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came, he, and all his host,
against Jerusalem, and pitched against it: and they built forts against it round about." On the last day,
tanks smashed holes into the building, "the city was broken up." There were unverifiable reports that
Koresh and several of his mighty men escaped through tunnels which led from under the building, "the
men of war fled by night by the way of the gate between two walls." Koresh was reportedly spotted at
some distance from the church, wearing a yellow tee-shirt and walking away from the fire, going east
across the fields, "the king went the way toward the plain." It has been speculated that Koresh got away
from the immediate vicinity of the church through a tunnel.

The FBI set the place afire, "every great man’s house burnt he with fire." Those who did not die in the
fire were arrested. The children who left during the Standoff were eventually placed with relatives. The
people who came out before the fire left the property, and have not returned. All were "carried away" to
antitypical Babylon.

End time Babylon was not content with burning the building, they also looted the site. "And the pillars of
brass that were in the house of the Lord, and the bases, and the brasen sea that was in the house of the
Lord, did the Chaldees break in pieces, and carried the brass of them to Babylon. And the pots, and the
shovels, and the snuffers, and the spoons, and all the vessels of brass wherewith they ministered, took
they away. And the firepans, and the bowls, and such things as were of gold, in gold, and of silver, in
silver, the captain of the guard took away." (2 KIngs 25:13-15). The lead bullets were bulldozed around
the site, creating lead contamination. During the cleanup of the lead contamination, all the metal objects
were removed from the site. Five buckets of silverware, and other metal scraps were given to Clive
Doyle and immediately stolen from him. Literally, end time Babylon took all the metal from the site.

And so, just as before, Babylon has stolen from God. But the final judgment on Babylon was delayed until
they had also committed blasphemy. Remember, they "brought the golden vessels that were taken out of
the temple of the house of God which was at Jerusalem; and the king, and his princes, his wives, and his
concubines, drank in them. They drank wine, and praised the gods of gold, and of silver, of brass, of
iron, of wood, and of stone." (Dan. 5:3,4).

Has end time Babylon committed blasphemy? My answer would be yes. They have lifted up false
messengers in the church to obscure the true messenger. Some of them are: David Koresh, Charlie
Pace, Renos Avramm, Clive Doyle and Doug Mitchell. The real wealth of the church, the reason the tithe
is paid, is the spiritual message. It is the Word of God. To defile the Word of God with deliberate
misrepresentation, to add confusion to it, or to obscure it with trivia, is blasphemy.

The whole chapter, Jeremiah 51, is about God's vengeance on Babylon. Here is a sample. "And I will
render unto Babylon and to all the inhabitants of Chaldea all their evil that they have done in Zion (God's
Kingdom) in your sight, saith the Lord. Behold, I am against thee, O destroying mountain, saith the Lord,
which destroyest all the earth: and I will stretch out Mine hand upon thee, and roll thee down from the
rocks, and will make thee a burnt mountain." (Jer. 51:24,25).

I quoted these verses because of what God made me do when I traveled doing literature evangelism
(2000 to 2004). As I passed through five coastal cities, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Boston, New York,
and Washington, D.C., God told me to damn and curse them in His Name. Then He said that He would
have them bulldozed and have their remains pushed into the sea. "The sea is come up upon Babylon:
she is covered with the multitude of the waves thereof." (Jer. 51:42).

These five coastal cities are as Sodom and Gomorrah to God, and He will destroy them. "And that the
whole land thereof is brimstone, and salt, and burning, that it is not sown, nor beareth, nor any grass
groweth therein, like the overthrow of Sodom, and Gomorrah, Admah, and Zeboim, which the Lord
overthrew in His anger, and in His wrath." (Deut. 29:23). There was actually a fifth corrupted city, Zoar,
which was to be destroyed, but God spared it because Lot, Abraham's nephew, fled there. "The sun was
risen upon the earth when Lot entered into Zoar. Then the Lord rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah
brimstone and fire from the Lord out of heaven." (Gen. 19:23,24). The Holy Ghost has told me to tell you
that many more cities will be destroyed.

The last message is this: "Flee out of the midst of Babylon, and deliver every man his soul: be not cut off
in her iniquity; for this is the time of the Lord’s vengeance; he will render unto her a recompence." (Jer.
51:6). It is best that you go at once. "My people, go ye out of the midst of her, and deliver ye every man
his soul from the fierce anger of the Lord. And lest your heart faint, and ye fear for the rumour that shall
be heard in the land; a rumour shall both come one year, and after that in another year shall come a
rumour, and violence in the land, ruler against ruler. As Babylon hath caused the slain of Israel to fall, so
at Babylon shall fall the slain of all the earth. Ye that have escaped the sword, go away, stand not still:
remember the Lord afar off, and let Jerusalem come into your mind." (Jer. 51:45,46,49,50). If you survive
God's vengeance on the cities, flee away
at once (even if you have to walk), "ye that have escaped the
sword, go away,
stand not still." (Fire and brimstone is nuclear destruction, the fallout can kill you if you
have much exposure to it.) Remember that God loves His people and go seek His Kingdom, "remember
the Lord afar off, and let Jerusalem come into your mind."

This message is a continuation of the call to leave Babylon's cities which began with Ellen White. "And
after these things I saw another angel come down from heaven, having great power; and the earth was
lightened with his glory. And he cried mightily with a strong voice, saying, Babylon the great is fallen, is
fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every
unclean and hateful bird. (The cities stink of moral corruption and over 3% of Americans are behind
bars.) For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth
have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the
abundance of her delicacies. (The great religion of the One World Government serves men instead of
God, and the great men of earth bow to it. The merchants of the earth thrive on the business of the rich,
while squeezing pennies from the poor.) And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of
her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues. For her sins
have reached unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities." (Rev. 18:1-5). Rather than wait to
see how much blasphemy God will tolerate, I suggest that you make provision to leave the cities now.

Amo Paul Bishop Roden