National Ruin
Revelation 18:1-8
And after these things I saw another angel come down from heaven, having great power; and the earth was lightened with his glory.…

Our scientific friends find yellow bricks still impressed with the name of Nebuchadnezzar, and they go back to the sarcophagus of a monarchy buried more than two thousand years ago. But is it possible that that is all that remains of Babylon? a city once five times larger than London and twelve times larger than New York? Wall three hundred and seventy-three feet high and ninety-three feet thick. Twenty-five burnished gates on each side, with streets running clear through to corresponding gates on the other side. Six hundred and twenty-five squares. More pomp and wealth and splendour and sins than could be found in any five modern cities combined. A city of palaces and temples. Great capital of the ages! But one night, while honest citizens were asleep, but all the saloons of saturnalia were in full blast, and at the king's castle they had filled the tankards for the tenth time, and reeling and guffawing and hiccoughing around the state table were the rulers of the land. General Cyrus ordered his besieging army to take shovels and spades, and they diverted the river from its usual channel into another direction, so that the forsaken bed of the river became the path on which the besieging party entered. When the morning dawned the conquerors were inside the city walls. Babylon had fallen. But do nations die? Oh, yes, there is great mortality among monarchies and republics. They are like individuals in the fact that they are born, they have a middle life, they have a decease, they have a cradle and a grave. Some of them are assassinated, some destroyed by their own hand.

1. One evil threatening the destruction of American institutions is the solidifying of the sections against each other. This country cannot exist unless it exists as one body — the national capital, the heart, sending out through all the arteries of communication warmth and life to the very extremities.

2. Another evil threatening the destruction of our American institutions is the low state of public morals. What killed Babylon of my text? What killed Phoenicia? What killed Rome? Their own depravity; and the fraud and the drunkenness, and the immorality which have destroyed other nations will destroy ours, unless a merciful God prevent.

(T. De Witt Talmage.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: And after these things I saw another angel come down from heaven, having great power; and the earth was lightened with his glory.

WEB: After these things, I saw another angel coming down out of the sky, having great authority. The earth was illuminated with his glory.

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