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The Empires of the Bible from the Confusion of Tongues to the Babylonian Captivity

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    INTRODUCTION

    Then began the second phase of history. The ambition for empire had now triumphed; and now it was to be demonstrated just what empire in full and undisputed sway would do. What Babylon did in undisputed sway of empire was, through luxury and vice, to sink herself in everlasting ruin, in only twenty-three years from the death of Nebuchadnezzar.EB xx.1

    Then worldly power in undisputed sway fell to media and Persia. In one hundred and ninety-six years, this empire from exemplary temperance and sobriety, fell to such luxury and vice that she too must sink forever: to be succeeded by the world-empire of Grecia in undisputed sway. She, too, pursued the same course to the same end; to be in turn succeeded by the world-empire of Rome in undisputed sway; and this, in turn, to pursue the same course in the same way and to the same end—annihilating ruin.EB xx.2

    Thus world-empire in undisputed sway had demonstrated in the fullest possible measure and in intense degree precisely what it would do, and only what it could do, when exercised in fullest and absolutely undisputed measure.EB xx.3

    Then came the third phase of history: and it is still apostasy and empire. No lesson was learned by men, of the essential vanity of empire; so that, in the presence of the best opportunity ever offered since the peopling of the earth after the flood, no attempt was made to recognize the individuality of man, and to cultivate this, in recognition of God, and to the true glory of God and man. But the apostate church, which professed to be in the world for this very purpose, and which still remained amidst the ruins of the vanished Roman empire, instead of taking this position in the world, and appealing to and building upon this principle in men, simply exalted herself in the same old sinful ambition of imperial world power.EB xx.4

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