Rev 18 details God’s judgment on commercial Babylon. She will be burned with fire and all her wealth will be laid waste. Plagues of mourning, famine and death will follow.
When the kings of the earth who committed adultery with her and shared her luxury see the smoke of her burning, they will weep and mourn over her.
Not all the kings of the earth commit adultery with Babylon and share her LUXURY. Only those who do so will weep when Babylon burns for they have lived in luxury with her. We can clearly see which are the present western capitalism states that are taking the bidding from Babylon today. I call them the Babylonian Alliance.
The merchants of the earth will weep and mourn over her because no one buys their cargoes anymore-cargoes of gold, silver, precious stones and pearls; fine linen, purple, silk and scarlet cloth; every sort of citron wood, and articles of every kind made of ivory, costly wood, bronze, iron and marble; cargoes of cinnamon and spice, of incense, myrrh and frankincense, of wine and olive oil, of fine flour and wheat; cattle and sheep; horses and carriages; and human beings sold as slaves.
I read an interesting article in the web that summarized the above products into 7 categories of LUXURIES in the ancient world.
- Precious metals and gems.
- Animals and implements.
(In modern times, the above categories are still considered luxuries, even people. We see the buying and selling of football players in the soccer leagues around the world for an example.)
The next group to weep when Babylon burns are the merchants who are selling all the above-mentioned categories of luxuries and have grown rich from the power of her luxurious living. Rev 18:3.
Every sea captain, and all who travel by ship, the sailors, and all who earn their living from the sea, will stand far off. 1When they see the smoke of her burning, they will exclaim, ‘Was there ever a city like this great city?’ They will throw dust on their heads, and with weeping and mourning cry out…
The final group to weep are the major seaports cum financial centres supporting the globalized trade orchestrated by Babylon and have also grown rich by her wealth.
Give her as much torment and grief as the glory and luxury she gave herself. In her heart she boasts, ‘I sit enthroned as queen. I am not a widow; I will never mourn.
This Babylonian Alliance, comprising all the western capitalism states, has been flaunting their wealth and luxurious living for far too long at the expense of the relative poorer nations in the rest of the world . It is an affront to the Lord and He has declared judgment on all these wealth for the sake of the saints and the labourers and harvesters who have been exploited and defrauded by being in the lowest rung of the supply chain. James 5:1-5.
It is a judgment on wealth and luxurious living and it is not mentioned in the seal, trumpet or bowl judgments during the Great Tribulation. Each of these judgments is an unprecedented disaster such as great earthquake (Rev 6:12-14), great warfare (Rev 6:5-6), hail and fire (Rev 8:7), plague of demonic locusts (Rev 9:1-11) and the killing of a third of humanity (Rev 9:12-21). The bowl judgments are even much worse in destruction. All such disasters will disrupt the global economy terribly during the Great Tribulation anyway. As such, I believe the Rev 18 judgment will happen before the Great Tribulation and set the stage for the emergence of the Antichrist to be seen as the savior of the world in resolving this global financial crisis. In Rev 17, we read as well that the beast and the ten kings will arise to destroy the religious system of Babylon. Rev 17:16.
Postscript : It is wonderful to know that Dr Steven Collins in the US also shared the same insight that the Rev 18 judgment has to happen before the Lord returns. (https://stevenmcollins.com/articles/babylon-the-great-falling/)