Revelation 18:23 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Revelation 18:23, NIV: "The light of a lamp will never shine in you again. The voice of bridegroom and bride will never be heard in you again. Your merchants were the world's important people. By your magic spell all the nations were led astray."

Revelation 18:23, ESV: "and the light of a lamp will shine in you no more, and the voice of bridegroom and bride will be heard in you no more, for your merchants were the great ones of the earth, and all nations were deceived by your sorcery."

Revelation 18:23, KJV: "And the light of a candle shall shine no more at all in thee; and the voice of the bridegroom and of the bride shall be heard no more at all in thee: for thy merchants were the great men of the earth; for by thy sorceries were all nations deceived."

Revelation 18:23, NASB: "and the light of a lamp will not shine in you any longer; and the voice of the bridegroom and bride will not be heard in you any longer; for your merchants were the great men of the earth, because all the nations were deceived by your sorcery."

Revelation 18:23, NLT: "The light of a lamp will never shine in you again. The happy voices of brides and grooms will never be heard in you again. For your merchants were the greatest in the world, and you deceived the nations with your sorceries."

Revelation 18:23, CSB: "the light of a lamp will never shine in you again; and the voice of a groom and bride will never be heard in you again. All this will happen because your merchants were the nobility of the earth, because all the nations were deceived by your sorcery."

What does Revelation 18:23 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Earlier verses depicted the doom of Babylon as a giant millstone being thrown into the ocean (Revelation 18:21). Its ruin in the end times will be total, sudden, and inescapable. These verses continue to emphasize the total destruction of this city by noting all of the activities which will cease.

By the time of the tribulation, the city—and possibly the associated government—of Babylon is seen worldwide as a bright, shining city. After its fall, the lights will go out. The lights will never come on again in Babylon.

Also, there will never be another wedding in Babylon. Although the city's merchants were known throughout the world for their successful enterprises, they will never again produce any goods or strike a deal. They will never swindle buyers again. Their "cash registers" will go silent and stay silent when God rains judgment upon their wicked city.

This verse implies that Babylon was a city of sorcery. The Greek word for "sorcery" is pharmakeia, from which we derive the word "pharmacy." Most likely, the "sorcery" of end-times Babylon will include drug production and trafficking. Substances such as illicit drugs control and enslave people, making them easier to manipulate. The beast's city of Babylon will likely be a bastion of drug addicts and dealers. All versions of "sorcery" will be ended when God destroys Babylon.