Talk:Babylonian Empire

From New World Encyclopedia
Unification Aspects: Babylon was used by God in the Old Testament to punish the children of Israel. Its conqueror, Cyrus the Great, was used by God to allow the Hebrews to return to their promised land. Babylon was an ancient center of civilization that developed an ethical outlook on life that influenced surrounding cultures. It helped to bridge cultures, being geographically located at the crossroads of travel north from Africa and west from Asia. It is one of the oldest continually inhabited regions, corresponding to modern-day Iraq. As the place to which many Jews were exiled, it contributed to the development of a book-centered expression of Judaism and to the idea that improving the social conditions in which all people live is fundamental to the mission that God wants his people to fulfill. Babylon can thus be said to have played a positive role in providential history, although it was also used as a means of chastisement. The Divine Principle explains the period of Babylonian Exile as a time of indemnity for Jacob's exile in Haran (297). The period of the Papacy's exile in Avignon, France, subject to the French kings, is also described as the Babylonian captivity, a "substantial parallel to the 210-year period of Israel's exile and return" (309). Babylon as a symbol of yearning for restoration, too, played an important role in slave spirituality in the United States before emancipation.
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