What Does “Upside Down” Look Like?

Revelation 18:11-13

(All Scripture is from the New King James Version unless otherwise indicated)

It is a photo of a creepy statue! But maybe this is what Upside Downlooks like! Because one thing that an upside down view of life does, it distorts what is actually real! Let’s look at Revelation 18:11 through 13. But first we have to identify the cataclysmic event that brought forth the total fear and despair that those involved, in this case, “…the merchants of the earth….” It was, according to Revelation 18:2, “Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen….

  • Babylon the great is not just a magnificent Asian city that was the capital of the Babylonian kingdom, but now an archeological ruin in the desert. Here it represents the entire economic, political, legal, and social structure of all the nations of the earth!
  • And Babylon the great has totally collapsed under God’s judgment! So sure is this total and final collapse, that the angel who announces human society’s destruction, repeats Babylon’s ruined condition:Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen….
     ➔   “...is fallen...” – The entire economic, political, 
          legal, and social structure of all the nations of 
          the earth lies in ruins!

     ➔   “...is fallen...” – The entire economic, political, 
          legal, and social structure of all the nations of 
          the earth lies in ruins!

But let’s focus on just one segment of the destruction caused by God’s judgment – The entire economic structure of all the nations of the earth lies in ruins! Here is Revelation 18:11 through 13, our featured Scripture:

     And the merchants of the earth will weep and mourn over her, 
     for no one buys their merchandise anymore: merchandise of gold, 
     and silver, precious stones and pearls, fine linen and purple, 
     silk and scarlet, every kind of citron wood [fragrant citrus], 
     every kind of object of ivory, every kind of object of most 
     precious wood, bronze, iron, and marble; and cinnamon and in-
     cense, wine and oil, fine flour and wheat, cattle and sheep, 
     horses and chariots, and bodies and souls of men.

I have highlighted this featured Scripture before, in a Gem entitled Convoluted Concern, published on June 24, 2013.

  • Bring it up in ‘Search’ and read it. You will learn some important Biblical information.
  • But I think Revelation 18:11 through 13 is so important, I am featuring this again in this Gem!

Twenty-eight commodities are listed, and there were many more items of merchandise that were sold and bought almost two thousand years ago, when the Apostle John wrote the book of Revelation. But this list is very telling! In Greek thinking, when a number of items comprised a list, it was usually presented in the order of the most important to the least, from the viewpoint of who was making the list!

  • …the merchants of the earth…are the ones who are weeping and wailing over the lost source of their riches!
What are the two most important and valuable com-
          modities on the merchant’s list? Gold is first, and 
          silver is second!What are the two commodities that are least impor-
          tant and valuable to them? ...bodies and souls of 

Now let’s consider the gods: well, two of them, god and God! You see, Satan is called a god in II Corinthians 4:4 – “…the god of this age…” or world (King James Version).

  • In Luke 4:5 and 6, the devil showed Jesus “…all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time….” And he said, “…all this…I will give You…for it has been delivered to me, and I give it to whomever I wish.” How did he come to own “…all the kingdoms of the world…?
     ✡   God gave Adam “...dominion over...the earth...” and 
         everything in it. (see Genesis 1:26-28).

     ✡   But Adam gave that dominion to Satan when he obeyed 
         the devil rather than God! (see Genesis 3:1-6).

     ✡   So it is no surprise that “...the merchants of the 
         earth...value gold and silver first, and bodies 
         and souls of people last! As far as the world is 

         ➔   “People are expendable!” 

         ➔   “It is the bottom line that counts!
  • But God puts the greatest premium on people, His highest creation, souls (salvation and growth in godliness) first; then bodies (physical needs) next!
     Jesus confirmed this order when He said, 

         ➔   “The Son of Man came to seek and to save 
              those who were lost.” (Luke 19:10).

         ➔   “...this is eternal life, that they may know 
              You [Father], the only true God, and Jesus 
              Christ whom You have sent.” (John 17:3).

     ✞   God is also interested in all our bodily needs in this 
         life! (see Matthew 6:24-34; I John 3:16-18).

     Gold and silver? He owns it all anyway! (see Psalm 
  • So if you want God’s viewpoint on the commodities in Revelation 18:12 and 13, just turn that list Upside Down! …or is it, turn it Rightside Up? – where it belongs in the first place! (see also Isaiah 24:1, 6 – and the explanation of that Scripture in the last Gem)!

If people, their soul needs and their bodily needs, are so important to God, should not they be important to you and me?

What are you doing about it?