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UPDATE: The Babylonian coincidence?


Babylonian Mosaic, Museum of Istanbul

Maybe it’s all just a coincidence, but one of the favorite Old Testament stories may have a strange link to the Book of Revelation and a case being brought before the US Supreme Court.

The Bible story involves Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego being thrown into a fiery furnace because they refused to bow and worship a giant idol.

The Jews had been taken in captivity by the Babylonians and an edict was passed requiring people of all nations to bow and worship a massive idol set up in the city. Refusal to worship would result in death by burning (Daniel 3:4-6).

Because of their faith in Jehovah, three Jewish boys Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego refused and were immediately sentenced to death. They stood for their faith and were thrown into a fiery furnace where their lives were miraculously spared.

Babylon was one of the great enemies of Israel and was eventually destroyed. But as we look to the New Testament, Babylon makes a second appearance in the Book of Revelation, a written record of the Apostle’s John vision of what would take place in the end times.

And similar to the Old Testament, Revelation’s Babylon will be a harbinger of evil behind the horrific persecution of Christians (Revelation 17).

So what was the Apostle John describing?

Was he talking about a recreation of the nation of Babylon or a manifestation of the same evil spirit that once controlled the ancient nation?

And is there any similarity to a court case being brought before the US Supreme Court by the Thomas More Law Center (TMLC) that is representing Caleigh Wood in her case against La Plata High School in La Plata, Maryland.

In 2015, one of Caleigh’s classes included a section on Islam and TMLC alleges that as part of an assignment the students were required to write out the Islamic conversion statement (also referred to as the Shahada): “There is no god but Allah, and Muhammad is the messenger of Allah.”

But as a believer in Christ, Caleigh refused for basically the same reason as Shadrach, Meshach and Abendego would not bow before the Babylonian idol. She believed there is only one God, Jehovah, and to confess Allah in such a fashion would be a form of blasphemy.

When Caleigh asked the teacher for an exemption, the teacher refused and then gave Caleigh a lower score when she did not complete the assignment.

Even though, it ultimately did not impact her overall grade, Caleigh’s family was shocked that the school would demand students do this with a threat of punishment (lower grade). Though it was nowhere near as severe as what was put on three Jewish boys in Babylon, nevertheless the parallels are there.

TMLC took Caleigh’s case to court arguing the school violated her First Amendment right of freedom of religion. Though they lost their first two cases, when lower courts supported the school’s position, TMLC appealed the case to the US Supreme Court. The case is apparently on the Court’s online docket and it will have a conference about the case on October 11, 2019.

Speaking on behalf of TMLC, Richard Thompson who is serving as Caleigh’s legal representation said;

“Under the guise of teaching history or social studies, public schools across America are promoting the religion of Islam in ways that would never be tolerated for Christianity or any other religion.

“I’m not aware of any school which has forced a Muslim student to write the Lord’s prayer or John 3:16: ‘For God so loved the world that He gave His only-begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.‘”

Richard Thompson, Thomas Moore Law Center

Though what happened to Caleigh is nowhere close to what is being described in the Book of Revelation, some would suggest there are some similarities.

Sources:

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