For 23 years Jeremiah spoke the word of Jehovah to the leaders of the Jewish nation. Over and over again, Jeremiah as well as other prophets such as Zephaniah and Habakkuk spoke God’s words of warning. The Jews refused to listen. Consequently, Jehovah’s patience came to an end. Here it is in God’s own words: “‘But you would not listen to me,’ declares Jehovah. ‘Instead you offended me with the work of your hands, to your own calamity.’” — Jeremiah 25:7
Jeremiah then delivered God’s chilling message of doom: “Because you would not obey my words, I am sending for all the families of the north,” declares Jehovah, “sending for King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon, my servant, and I will bring them against this land and against its inhabitants and against all these surrounding nations. I will devote them to destruction and make them an object of horror and something to whistle at and a perpetual ruin.” — Jeremiah 25:8-9
It may seem strange that Jehovah referred to Nebuchadnezzar, the King of Babylon, as “my servant.” The reason is because the King of Babylon had been forced to recognize Jehovah’s supremacy on more than one occasion. And because Nebuchadnezzar was doing God’s destructive work—as if he had been hired to perform a specific task—Jehovah referred to him as “my servant.”
Does the destruction wrought by King Nebuchadnezzar have any significance for people living in this modern world? Indeed it does. Jehovah went on to say: “A noise will resound to the ends of the earth, for Jehovah has a controversy with the nations. He will personally pass judgment on all humans. And he will put the wicked to the sword,” declares Jehovah. This is what Jehovah of armies says: “Look! A calamity is spreading from nation to nation, and a great tempest will be unleashed from the remotest parts of the earth. And those slain by Jehovah in that day will be from one end of the earth clear to the other end of the earth. They will not be mourned, nor will they be gathered up or buried. They will become like manure on the surface of the ground.” — Jeremiah 25:31-33
Just as Jesus’ prophecy concerning the destruction of Jerusalem has far-reaching implications, since Christ linked it to a great tribulation that will come upon the entire inhabited earth, so too, the prophecy of Jeremiah is not limited to the ancient nations of what is now called the Middle East.
Jeremiah was commanded to pass the cup of Jehovah’s judgments among all the nations starting with Jerusalem. This was obviously symbolic, indicating the inevitability of Jehovah’s judgments being carried out. It is important to note, though, that the judgment wrought by Babylon would begin with Jerusalem. Jehovah goes on to say to Jeremiah: “And if they refuse to take the cup out of your hand to drink, say to them, ‘This is what Jehovah of armies says: “You must drink it! For look! if I am bringing calamity first on the city that bears my name, should you go unpunished?”’
Jehovah’s Witnesses, especially the leadership, should take note that Jehovah’s adverse judgment first came upon the city that bore His name. Jerusalem was where Jehovah had caused His name to reside because that is where the temple was located. The temple in Jerusalem was the only place where God figuratively resided. Of course, in the Christian era, God’s temple is spiritual. Nevertheless, the principle is well established, even as the apostle revealed: “For it is the appointed time for the judgment to start with the house of God. Now if it starts first with us, what will the outcome be for those who are not obedient to the good news of God?” — 1 Peter 4:17
Among those nations required to drink from Jehovah’s cup of wrath was Egypt, along with Moab, Edom, and Amon. Those four nations are listed in Daniel’s long-running prophecy of the kings of the north and south. It is during the time of the end when the king of the north will “also enter into the land of the Decoration, and many lands will be made to stumble. But these are the ones that will escape out of his hand: Edom and Moab and the main part of the Ammonites. And he will keep thrusting out his hand against the lands; and as regards the land of Egypt, she will not escape. And he will rule over the hidden treasures of gold and silver and over all the desirable things of Egypt. And the Libyans and the Ethiopians will be at his steps.” — Daniel 11:41-43
One of the first things Jehovah brought to my attention back in 1996 is that Egypt in the prophecies of Ezekiel, Isaiah, and in the instance of the conquest of the king of the north, represents the United States of America. Also listed among the entities required to drink the cup from Jehovah’s hand was the famed city of Tyre. Although Tyre and Egypt were not allied in ancient times in the 3D patterns of prophecy they represent the modern Anglo-American dual-world power.
The sudden, catastrophic downfall of the presently-teetering Anglo Empire is what is symbolized in the 13th chapter of Revelation as one of the heads of the seven-headed wild beast suffering a fatal wound. Contrary to the Watchtower’s untenable myth that the victorious Allies fulfilled Revelation when they supposedly suffered a fatal head wound as a result of the First World War, the death blow will occur in the immediate future. These matters have been presented in numerous essays and in the book Jehovah Himself Has Become King.
And, of course, the land of the Decoration is a reference to Christ’s congregation which was founded upon the covenants God had concluded with Abraham and Israel, the original decorated land. So, Babylon, whose armies swept down from the north and figuratively conquered all nations, represents the king of the north in his world conquest, which parallels the ascension of the eighth king in the post-crash world.
Most sobering, lastly Babylon (king of the north) itself was ordered to drink the cup of destruction from Jehovah’s hand: “and all the kings of the north near and far, one after the other, and all the other kingdoms of the earth that are on the surface of the ground; and the king of Sheshach will drink after them.” (Vs 26)
According to the Insight encyclopedia, Sheshach is a cryptographic term to denote Babylon. Thus, the judgment that begins with the city where Jehovah’s name was placed culminates with global destruction—otherwise known as the battle of Armageddon.
Imagine how offended Jehovah must be because of the arrogance of those who bear his name, who imagine they are faithful and discreet. They fit exactly the prophetic profile of those Jewish leaders who were so cocksure that no calamity would ever come upon them. After all, Jehovah had already destroyed the mighty Assyrian army when they invaded Judea. Jerusalem was the charmed city. That is why God said to the shepherds: “Wail, you shepherds, and cry out! Wallow about, you majestic ones of the flock, because the time of your slaughter and your dispersion has come, and you will fall like a precious vessel! The shepherds have no place to flee, and there is no escape for the majestic ones of the flock. Listen! The outcry of the shepherds and the wailing of the majestic ones of the flock, for Jehovah is devastating their pasture.” — Jeremiah 25:34-36