Revelation – Chapter 18

Babylon the Great is Destroyed

Verse 1 – After these things I saw another angel coming down from heaven, having great authority, and the earth was illuminated with his glory.

Verse 2 – And he cried mightily with a loud voice, saying, “Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and has become a habitation of demons, a prison for every foul spirit, and a cage for every unclean and hated bird!

After witnessing the coming destruction of the one-world prostitute religious system, John receives a new revelation. Another angel comes down from heaven and takes the power and wealth of the political and economic system. Babylon has become the home for every demon and unclean spirit.

Verse 3 – “For all the nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth have become rich through the abundance of her luxury.”

Some may think that a one-world government will be hard to achieve. Unless you are not paying attention to the politics in the US and around the globe, you would see that is exactly what the “progressive left” are striving to achieve. They, meaning the government, is trying to tell people how much money they can earn and what to spend it on. They mostly want everyone equal, except for themselves.

By the time the Tribulation Period gets here, the people will be so use to those in government telling them what they can have, there won’t be much of a revolt. Corruption breeds corruption! By the time the Tribulation arrives these nations will be intoxicated with controlling all the wealth of all the people.

Verse 4 – And I heard another voice from heaven saying, “Come out of her, My people, lest you share in her sins, and lest you receive of her plagues.

The powerful and wealthy people at this time have a certain attitude of, “I have wealth, so I don’t need God!” But just as it will be then as it is now, those belonging to God need to come out of this world of greed and stay committed to helping those less fortunate.

Verse 5 – “For the sins have reached to heaven, and God has remembered her iniquities.

In the Old Testament when the people were building the Tower of Babel, God stopped its construction by making them speak different languages and scattering the people. This time Babylon’s destruction will be in one day and He will burn it to the ground.

Verse 6 – “Render to her just as she rendered to you, and repay her double according to her works; in the cup which she has mixed, mix for her double.

Verse 7 – In the measure that she glorified herself and lived luxuriously, in the same measure give her torment and sorrow; for she says in her heart, ‘I sit as queen, and am no widow, and will not see sorrow.’

History shows that once a nation becomes wealthy and prosperous, they become independent of their need for God. Are not most people like that? With the same measure of mercy shown, mercy will be given. Meaning, Babylon showed no mercy, so in return they will receive no mercy!

In 1929 the stock market crashed, which obliterated 40% of value of common paper stock. This brought on the “Great Depression” and lasted 12 years. People committed suicide because all their wealth was gone. When Babylon falls, which contains and controls the world’s wealth, what do you think the people will do? They will weep deeply because money has become their god and in one hour it is all gone!

Verse 8 – “Therefore her plagues will come in one day – death and mourning and famine. And she will be utterly burned with fire, for strong is the Lord God who judges her.

What no earthly army can do, God will accomplish in one day.

The Earth Mourns Babylon’s Destruction

Verse 9 – “And the kings of the earth who committed fornication and lived luxuriously with her will weep and lament for her, when they see the smoke of her burning,

Verse 10 –  “standing at a distance for fear of her torment, saying, ‘Alas, alas, that great city Babylon, that mighty city! For in one hour your judgment has come.’

Panic and terror will grip the kings and dictators of the world. They never thought this great city which held so much power and wealth could be destroyed in an instant.

Verse 11 – “And the merchants of the earth will weep and mourn over her, for no one buys their merchandise anymore:

This weeping will not be because of the loss of life or even over their sin, but over the loss of customers.

Verse 12 – “merchandise of gold and silver, precious stones and pearls, fine linen and purple, silk and scarlet, every kind of citron wood, every kind of object of ivory, every kind of object of most precious wood, bronze, iron, and marble;

These are the goods of an affluent society. The global traders will pile them up in Babylon.

The Apostle James warned about such things when he said, “Now listen, you rich people, weep and wail because of the misery that is coming upon you. Your wealth has rotted, and moths have eaten your clothes. Your gold and silver are corroded. Their corrosion will testify against you and eat your flesh like fire. You have hoarded wealth in the last days (James 5:1-3). God is the One that gives wealth and it is meant to benefit others as well as ourselves.

Verse 13 – and cinnamon and incense, fragrant oil and frankincense, wine and oil, fine flour and wheat, cattle and sheep, horses and chariots, and bodies and souls of men.

And we thought that slavery would have ended by now. Nope! Among the items lost will be the souls of men being sold as merchandise. This world system championed by the beast will dehumanize mankind, as any system without God will do.

Verse 14 – “And the fruit that your soul longed for has gone from you, and all things which are rich and splendor have gone from you, and you shall find them no more at all.

Verse 15 – “The merchants of these things, who became rich by her, will stand at a distance for fear of her torment, weeping and wailing,

Verse 16 – “and saying, ‘Alas, alas, that great city that was clothed in fine linen, purple, and scarlet, and adorned with gold and precious stones and pearls!

The weeping and wailing will be 100 times worse than that of 1929! This will be global!

Verse 17 – ‘For in one hour such great riches came to nothing.’ And every ship-master, all who travel by ship, sailors, and as many as trade on the sea, stood at a distance

Verse 18 – “and cried out when they saw the smoke of her burning, saying, ‘What is like this great city!’

This aspect of globalism is already upon us. No developed nation of any kind can survive today without networking with the global economy. Even now, there is no such things as American made that is not dependent on parts, trade, or investment from foreign countries.

Verse 19 – “And they threw dust on their heads and cried out, weeping and wailing, and saying, ‘Alas, alas, that great city, in which all who had ships on the sea became rich by her wealth! For in one hour she is made desolate.

This is a perfect example of what “the love of money” does to people when money is their god and God is gone. The only things left is godless grief.

Verse 20 – “Rejoice over her, O heaven, and you holy apostles and prophets, for God has avenged you on her!”

Verse 21 – Then a mighty angel took up a stone like a great millstone and threw it into the sea saying, “Thus with violence the great city Babylon shall be thrown down, and shall not be found anymore.

When that stone is thrown, the water from the sea will rise up and then come down on this great city and completely immerse it, and will be seen no more.

Verse 22 – “The sound of harpist, musicians, flutist, and trumpeters shall not be heard in you anymore. And no craftsman of any craft shall be found in you anymore. And the sound of a millstone shall not be heard in you anymore.

Verse 23 – “And the light of the lamp shall not shine in you in anymore. And the voice of bridegroom and bride shall not be heard in you anymore. For your merchants were great men of the earth, for by your sorcery all the nations were deceived.

Black magic and sorcery will be fluent in this city and probably all over the world by this time.  These practices lead people astray until God puts their lights out!

Verse 24 – “And in her was found the blood of prophets and saints, and all who were slain on the earth.”

The system of Babylon is held responsible for all prophets and saint’s death that were slaughtered on earth. Jesus warned that false prophets will deceive many in the last days. Beware of any religious leader who leaves Jesus out and opposes Scripture the way it is written. Any message that contradicts the Bible no matter how sweet-sounding, is not from God!

Money can be a blessing or a curse in a person’s life. Make sure it’s put to good use according to God’s will, or it can destroy, even to the very soul of man.

 

 

 

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Revelation – Chapter 17

Chapter 17, tells about a Babylonian woman who has a double identity: she is a woman and a city. This is one of the keys to understanding Chapters 17 and 18 – recognizing that Babylon the Great is both a woman and a city at the same time.

As a mother, Babylon the Great is a failure. She is a prostitute and a mother of prostitutes. The Bible tells us that a prostitute is more than just a woman who physically commits sexual sins. A prostitute is also a person who spiritually has stopped following the true God and has turned to idol worship.

Babylon the Great abandoned the true God and has raised her daughters (false religions) to do the same. She is the mother of false religions who wants all her daughters to grow up in her one-world prostitute religion.

The names of some of her daughters are “New Age”, “Satan Worship,” “Mother Earth Worship,” “Globalism,” “Hinduism,” and “Islamism.” They talk about love and peace, but none of these love Jesus, and none of them talk about peace with God through Jesus.

Babylon, the city, will open her doors to one-world government, one-world religion, and global trade.

Babylon will be filled with adulterous kings or heads of nations. Obviously kings cannot marry a religion, so think spiritually. Just as we, the Church, is the “Bride of Christ,” adulterous kings will marry false religions in the sense that they accept these false doctrines of the false religions.

The Great Harlot is Described

Verse 1 – Then one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls came and talked with me saying to me, “Come, I will show you the judgment of the great harlot who sits on many waters,

Verse 2 – with whom the kings of the earth committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth were made drunk with wine of her fornication.”

In the Bible, seas and waters represent great masses of people. They represent people, nations, and tongues. The fact is that she is supported by these masses and she controls them during the Tribulation Period.

There will come a time when there is no more separation of “Church” and “State.” This harlot religious system will conspire with world leaders to produce a merger of religion and government. A religious system united with a political system to manipulate the people of the earth into a false government – approved religion.

The wine of her adulteries is a reference to demonic possession. The people will be lead away by deceiving spirits.

A false prophet of international fame will suddenly emerge to gain control of the world religious system and use it to reinforce the worship of the Antichrist.

Verse 3 – So he carried me away in the Spirit into the wilderness. And I saw a woman sitting on a scarlet beast which was full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns.

We already know that the beast with seven heads and ten horns is the Antichrist. Since the woman is sitting on the beast, we must assume that her prostitute religion and the Antichrist will exist on earth at the same time.

At first the Antichrist will support her one-world religion and support her authority, but things will eventually turn sour between the two.

Verse 4 – The woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet, and adorned with gold and precious stones and pearls, having in her hand a golden cup full of abominations and the filthiness of her fornication.

She will be clothed in purple, signifying a royal stature. She will appear enticing and appealing to the world. This golden cup will be full of all things vile. The more false a religion is, usually the more wealth it has. And the more sure religion is, usually the less material things it has. A church can become wealthy by becoming spiritually bankrupt.

Verse 5 – And on her forehead a name was written: MYSTERY BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOT’S AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.

A false religious system was born on the plains of Shinar in ancient Babylon, where the first dictator, Nimrod, defying God, built a tower that would reach heaven. The tower was used for studying the stars and establishing the basis for astrology. From the very beginning Babylon was associated with sorcery and astrology.

The prostitute, which is the one-world religious system, originated at the Tower of Babel.

Verse 6 – And I saw the woman, drunk with the blood of the saints and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus. and when I saw her, I marveled with great amazement.

This system will be overflowing with the blood of the Tribulation Saints. She will be active in putting to death those who give their lives to Christ.

Obviously, Mystery Babylon, the apostate pagan church of the last days, will not develop overnight. This will take place over a period of years with conferences leading up to the seven-year Tribulation Period.

I see this taking place now in church organizations today, where there is no call for repentance and any life-style is welcome. Everything is all “nicy-nice” and all about loving everybody and everything. The true gospel of Jesus Christ is so watered down you might as well go to a football game were shouting and praising a team is more exciting. I don’t think the church has far to go before it becomes an abomination of God in heaven!

The Great Harlot is Destroyed

Verse 7 – But the angel said to me, “Why did you marvel? I will tell you a mystery of the woman and of the beast that carries her, which has seven heads and the ten horns.

Verse 8 – “The beast that you saw was, and is not, and will ascend out of the bottomless pit and go to perdition. And those who dwell on the earth will marvel, whose names are not written in the Book of Life from the foundation of the world, when they see the beast that was, and is not, and yet is.

The beast “was,” existed before John’s lifetime. The beast is “not,” died with a mortal wound. The best “yet is,” came back to life by satanic power.

Verse 9 – “Here is the mind which has wisdom: The seven heads are seven mountains on which the woman sits.

Verse 10 – There are also seven kings. Five have fallen, one is, and the other has not yet come. And when he comes, he must continue a short time.

Interpreting these two verse requires the spiritual understanding of Scripture, not of world geography.

The woman, according to verse 10, sits on not seven hills, but seven kings, kingdoms of the world governments. The seven mountains or hills is a symbol of kingdoms. The seven heads are attached to the beast, not the woman. The woman sits on the whole beast, not just the seven heads. Therefore she has control over the seven mountains instead of pointing to her physical location.

“Five have fallen” are the five Gentile world kingdoms, Assyrian, Medo-Persian, existed before John’s lifetime. “One is”, refers to the sixth kingdom, Roman, that existed during John’s lifetime, and “The other has not yet come,” refers to a seventh future kingdom, the Revived Roman Empire, which will exist after John’s lifetime. This kingdom will remain during the seven-year Tribulation Period.

Verse 11 – “And the beast that was, and is not, is himself also the eighth, and is of the seven, and is going to perdition.

The beast who once was, and now is not, is the Antichrist. “He is of the seven” means he will be one of the seven already mentioned. Since he is yet to come, he must come out of the seventh Gentile world kingdom which will be the Revived Roman Empire.

As an eighth king he will take over the seventh Gentile world kingdom and establish his own brand of world government – a New World Order. The Antichrist will rise to power in the government, a Satanic State. Such a government would operate through a world headquarters, a world court, and even a world military.

Verse 12 – “And the ten horns which you saw are ten kings who have received no kingdom as yet, but they receive authority for one hour as kings with the beast.

The Antichrist will rule the world which will be divided into ten divisions. In charge of these divisions will be a separate leader who will answer to the Antichrist. One hour is a Bible term that means a short time.

Verse 13 – “These are of one mind and they will give their power and authority to the beast.

Dictators usually come into power by using violence, force, or political trickery. The Antichrist will be much worse that anything the world has ever seen. He will outlaw basic freedoms such as; freedom of assembly, freedom of speech, and freedom of worship.

Verse 14 – “These will make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb will overcome them, for He is Lord of lords and King of kings, and those who are with Him are called chosen, and faithful.”

Verse 15 – And he said to me, “The waters which you saw where the harlot sits, are peoples, multitudes, nations, and tongues.

This false religion, the harlot, will deceive multitudes of people and it will be worldwide.

As we read this, we Christians wonder how can people ever be so deceived? But aren’t multitudes deceived now in today’s world? The lust of the flesh and the pleasures of this world are powerful and binding. If people can’t resist today’s temptations, what makes them think they will survive this Tribulation Period for seven years? Christ will be and always has been our only hope!

Verse 16 – “And the ten horns which you saw on the beast, these will hate the harlot, make her desolate and naked, eat her flesh and burn her with fire.

At the half way point in the Tribulation Period, three and one-half years, the Antichrist and his allies will destroy the prostitutes religious system. Obviously there is no more room for Babylon and her one-world religion and one-world government.

The Antichrist cannot be God and subject to those who worship God at the same time. Someone has to go. They will confiscate all her wealth and kill the deceived people. The Antichrist will enter the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem and declare himself to be God.

Verse 17 – “For God has put it into their hearts to fulfill His purpose, to be of one mind, and to give their kingdom to the beast, until the words of God are fulfilled.

Isn’t it funny, not “ha ha” funny, that evil people can be used by God to accomplish His purpose, don’t know it?

Verse 18 – “And the woman whom you saw is that great city which reigns over the kings of the earth.”

Some like to speculate or spiritualize everything in the Book of Revelation. However, I believe this woman is the actual ancient city of Babylon and that her reconstruction will be complete in the “End Times.” The Bible prophecies will be fulfilled when someone announces that Babylon will become their capital. Babylon will once again become the capital of an empire in the Middle East.

There already exists an establishment to bring all religions together. One is called Parliament of World Religion. The first was in 1893, which was an attempt to create a global dialog of faiths.

In 1993 a convening of the Parliament of World Religions was held and 150 religions from Buddhism to Catholicism were represented in this meeting. The outcome of this meeting was “The Declaration of a Global Ethic” which sought to outline the core values and beliefs common to all faiths.

This organizations vision is; to live in harmony and contribute to a better world; cultures and fears and hatred are replaced with understanding and respect. The world’s most powerful institutions move beyond self-interest to the common good; all people commit to living out their values and aspirations to the common good.

In other words, their goal is not unity, but to bring inter-religion harmony. I say, it all sounds good, but where is Jesus? Hidden in their agenda is, to remove that there is only one way to the true God of heaven, which is through Jesus Christ!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Revelation – Chapter 16

First Bowl

Verse 1 – Then I heard a loud voice from the temple saying to the seven angels, “Go and pour out the bowls of the wrath of God on the earth.”

Some people may wonder why God didn’t just wipe out all the unbelievers at the beginning when the Church was raptured.  Why all the warnings by sending witnesses, plagues, wars, famines and even an Antichrist? Because of His great love and mercy. These judgments gave even more people time to repent, rather than spend an eternity without Him. and yet, some still refuse.

Verse 2 – So the first went and poured out his bowl upon the earth and a foul and loathsome sore came upon men who had the mark of the beast and those who worshiped his image.

This plague will be similar to the sixth plague in Egypt when Moses was trying to get the Hebrews set free. At that time, God afflicted the Egyptian people with tumors, festering sores, and itching skin. The whole land , all the Egyptians, and even the animals were affected.

Second Bowl

Verse 3 – Then the second angel poured out his bowl on the sea, and it became blood as of a dead man; and every living creature in the sea died.

Third Bowl

Verse 4 – Then the third angel poured out his bowl on the rivers and spring waters, and they became blood.

Verse 5 – And I heard the angel of the waters saying: “You are righteous, O Lord, the One who is and who was and who is to be, because You have judged these things.

Verse 6 – For they have shed the blood of saints and prophets, and You have given them blood to drink. For it is their due.”

I don’t think we realize the important role angels have in managing God’s creation. Look how many times angels are given a command in this entire book. We have four angels holding back the wind and now we have a “water” angel.

The bloody waters will be God’s response to the shedding of the blood of the Tribulation Saints and the Old Testament prophets.

The Ten Commandments plainly says, “Thou shall not murder!” (It does not say “kill,” or everyone who fought in a war would be guilty, see Exodus 20:13.)

Verse 7 – And I heard another from the altar saying, “Even so, Lord God Almighty true and righteous are Your judgments.”

Fourth Bowl

Verse 8 – Then the fourth angel poured out his bowl on the sun, and power was given to him to scorch men with fire.

Verse 9 – And men were scorched with great heat, and they blasphemed the name of God who has power over these plagues; and they did not repent and give Him glory.

According to Malachi, a day is coming when the earth will burn like a furnace. Many evildoers will be reduced to stubble.

The sun will scorch many and they will not have any clean drinking water nor will they be able to jump in any body of water to cool off. They will be burning from the sun’s intense heat on top of the sores they already have. But instead of pleading for God to save them and repenting of their sin, they will curse God.

Fifth Bowl

Verse 10 – Then the fifth angel poured out his bowl on the throne of the beast, and his kingdom became full of darkness; and they gnawed their tongues because of the pain.

The prophet Joel says the Tribulation Period’s darkness will be unlike anything the world has ever experienced.

These people who have taken the mark of the beast have no idea that this was going to happen because they spent their lives not caring one second to find out what the True God was really like. However, they will realize when it’s too late whom is controlling it all, and still not repent.

Verse 11 – And they blasphemed the God of heaven because of their pain and their sores, and did not repent of their deeds.

Sixth Bowl

Verse 12 – Then the sixth angel poured out his bowl on the great river Euphrates, and its water was dried up, so that the way of the kings from the east might be prepared.

What is the purpose of drying up the Euphrates River? Because it serves as a barrier that divides the East from the West. It prevents the kings of the East from moving their great army into the West (the Middle East).

When the sixth angel pours out his bowl, the river will dry up and the barrier will be gone! The kings of the East will be able to move their 200 million man army against Israel in the Battle of Armageddon. This will likely be an alliance of Eastern nations.

The Battle of Armageddon will be a worldwide attempted genocide of the Jew. Today a 200 million man army is not hard to imagine with billions of people in China and India.

Verse 13 – And I saw three unclean spirits like frogs coming out of the mouth of the dragon, out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet.

John tells us that three unclean spirits will come forward; one from the dragon, Satan; one from the beast, the Antichrist; and one from the False Prophet.

We can only speculate about these demonic spirits. We do know though, the Egyptians worshiped “Heka”, a frog-headed goddess. Witches are often portrayed with frogs and use them in their spells. Frogs breed in mire and muck and are a symbol of uncleanness.

Verse 14 – For they are spirits of demons, performing signs, which go out to the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to battle of that great day of God Almighty.

Those who do not have the One and Only True Spirit of God living on the inside, will be deceived by these signs. The same goes for today when we see miracles, or people telling us it was a sign from God. The Bible says to “test the spirits!” Don’t be fooled! Only those who carry God’s Holy Spirit can tell the difference.

Verse 15 – “Behold, I am coming as a thief. Blessed is he who watches and keeps his garments, lest he walk naked and they see his shame.”

This verse is a reference to the coming of Jesus at the end of the Tribulation Period. Jesus’ return will catch them by surprise. This garment is the righteousness of Christ that the believer is clothed in. He’s not talking about the Church, because the Church has already been raptured. He’s talking to the believers that are watching, waiting, and in hiding during this time. They are to keep their faith!

Verse 16 – And they gathered them together to the place called in Hebrew, Armageddon.

Seventh Bowl

Verse 17 – Then the seventh angel poured out his bowl into the air and a loud voice came out of the temple of heaven, from the throne, saying, “It is done!”

Verse 18 – And there were noises and thunderings and lightnings, and there was a great earthquake, such a mighty and great earthquake as had not occurred since men were on the earth.

When this angel pours this last judgment into the air, something will happen to the atmosphere. Great flashes of lightning will break out, a  tremendous earthquake will shatter the land. God has spoken and people’s chances are over!

Verse 19 – Now the great city was divided into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell. And great Babylon was remembered before God, to give her the cup of the wine of the fierceness of His wrath.

Babylon will be divided into three parts, but the other nations will be leveled. One of the three angels (Revelation 14:8), predicted Babylon’s doom a short time before this happens. The Old Testament prophets predicted her doom long before that. It will be time for all those prophecies to be fulfilled.

Verse 20 – Then every island fled away, and the mountains were not found.

Verse 21 – And great hail from heaven fell upon men, every hailstone about the weight of a talent. and men blasphemed God because of the plague of the hail, since that plague was exceedingly great.

The surface of the whole earth will change. Every mountain will be leveled and islands will be moved out-of-place.

The hailstones will weigh more than 100 pounds and yet people will still curse God.

My question is this: If so many pastors and preachers know this day is coming, then why in the world are so few telling their congregations? Most of their messages is so full of self-interest. It’s all about what affects the individual – themselves.

I believe there are thousands sitting in the pews every week that have never even read one chapter of the Book of Revelation and  that’s a shame!

 

 

 

Revelation – Chapter 15

Preparation for the Bowl Judgments

Verse 1 – Then I saw another sign in heaven, great and marvelous: seven angels having the seven last plagues, for in them the wrath of is God complete.

The seven last plagues are also called the seven bowl judgments. These actually begin in Chapter 16. Unlike the previous plagues, these are universal.

Verse 2 – And I saw something like a sea of glass mingled with fire, and those who have the victory over the beast, over his image and over his mark and over the number of his name, standing on the sea of glass, having harps of God.

This will be the second glassy sea to appear in heaven. The first glassy sea will be clear as crystal. This one will be mixed with fire. The sea symbolizes the masses of humanity, and the fire represents judgment.

These saints standing on this glassy sea will be those who were victorious over the beast and were killed for their faith to God. People on earth, during this time think that Satan has overcome the saints, but he actually just sent them into eternity to be with the Lord. The kind of triumph these martyrs of the Tribulation will experience will be deliverance through fire, not out of it.

Verse 3 – And they sing the song of Moses, the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb saying: “Great and marvelous are Your works, Lord God Almighty! Just and true are Your ways, O King of the Saints!

Just prior to the seven bowl judgments, the saints in heaven will sing the song of Moses, which is found in Exodus 15:1-9. They sang because of their deliverance.

The song of the Lamb is in this verse. It celebrates God’s reign and victory over all nations.

Verse 4 – Who shall not fear You, O Lord, and glorify Your name? For You alone are holy. For all nations shall come and worship before You, for Your judgments have been manifested.”

Verse 5 – After these things I looked, and behold, the temple of the tabernacle of the testimony in heaven was opened.

This “temple of the tabernacle of the testimony” is where the “Holy of Holies and the Ark of the Covenant is. Most people, including Jews, don’t realize that rejecting Christ is rejecting God. Those who reject the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, will be judged according to the Law. And let’s not forget, no one could keep the law perfectly, only Jesus.

Verse 6 – And out of the temple came the seven angels having seven plagues, clothed in pure bright linen, and having their chests girded with golden bans.

The “pure brightness” signifies their righteousness and the “golden bans” signify their royal priesthood.

Verse 7 – Then one of the four living creatures gave to the seven angels seven golden bowls full of the wrath of God who lives forever and ever.

Some Bible versions say these are “vials” instead of bowls. However, when a liquid bubbles out of a vial, it bubbles out slowly, but when a bowl is upset the liquid is suddenly dumped out. and that is exactly what happens here. God’s wrath is suddenly dumped out on the inhabitants on the earth.

Verse 8 – The temple was filled with smoke from the glory of God and from His power, and no one was able to enter the temple till the seven plagues of the seven angels were completed.

There will be no more mercy, no more delays, and no more opportunities to repent until the seven plagues have passed. At some point in the Tribulation Period, God will say, “It’s over. The destiny of those who keep rejecting My Son is sealed forever.”

 

 

Revelation – Chapter 14

The 144,000

Verse 1 – Then I looked, and behold, a Lamb standing on Mount Zion, and with Him one hundred and forty-four thousand, having His Father’s name written on their foreheads.

The 144,000 will have the name of Jesus and the Father on their foreheads. The followers of the Antichrist will have the name of their father on their right hand or forehead.

Mount Zion of old, was captured by King David. He then built a city called the city of David, also called Jerusalem.

Verse 2 – And I heard a voice from heaven, like the voice of many waters, and like the voice of loud thunder. And I heard the sound of harpist playing their harps.

Verse 3 – And they sang as it were a new song before the throne before the four living creatures, and the elders; and no one could learn that song except the hundred and forty-four thousand who were redeemed from the earth.

Notice what takes place between verse 1 and verse 3. These 144,000 have been on the earth since the “Sixth Seal.” They have gone unharmed from the Antichrist or the False Prophet. Then they are gathered with Jesus on Mount Zion and suddenly John hears a roaring voice from heaven. These 144,000 are then in haven before the throne of God singing a song only they know. They survived the trials and testings of the Tribulation Period.

Verse 4 – These are the ones who were not defiled with women, for they are virgins. These are the ones who follow the Lamb wherever He goes. These were redeemed form among men, being firstfruits to God and to the Lamb.

These men did not stray from Christ’s will or teachings. They were purchased among men, bought with the blood of Jesus. Offered as firstfruits, were the first Jews saved during the Tribulation. Being virgins, both physically and spiritually makes sense.

Verse 5 – And in their mouths was found no guile, for they are without fault before the throne of God.

They will have nothing to do with the lies of the Antichrist, or the counterfeit doctrine of the False Prophet. They remain faithful and true to the  righteousness of Christ.

The Three Angels’ Announcements

Verse 6 – Then I saw another angel flying in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach to those who dwell on the earth – to every nation, tribe, tongue, and people –

Verse 7 – saying with a loud voice, “Fear God and give glory to Him, for the hour of His judgment has come, and worship Him who made heaven and earth, the sea and springs of water.”

This is the first time an angel is commissioned to preach the Gospel. But it will not be the Gospel of the “Grace of God,” nor the “Gospel of the Kingdom,” but a new Gospel, called “Everlasting Gospel.” The burden is “Judgment” not “Salvation,” and it will be “Good News’ to all those passing through the “fiery trials” of those days, for it will be the announcement that the “Hour of Judgment” is come for all those who do wickedly.

“Fear God;” Satan would have us believe that we are to be afraid of God, but this is incorrect to believers. To fear God means to have a holy respect for Him, believe He exists, and believe He reigns and will judge all mankind. This kind of fear is the beginning of wisdom and it pleases God.

Verse 8 – And another angel followed, saying, “Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she has made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication.”

Babylon is known as the city of Satan because of its long history of idolatry, astrology, witchcraft, and other occult practices. It is the very place of false doctrines and religions.

Wine in the book of Acts is referred to as a symbol of the Holy Spirit. In this verse “the wine of wrath” is a reference to demonic possession.

This ancient city died out centuries ago., but during the Tribulation Period, this city will be rebuilt. The False Prophet will locate the headquarters of his false religion there. (Exactly where it will be located is not known.)

The word fallen is repeated twice to mean two separate falls or judgments. The false religious system will fall first when the Antichrist turns on it just after the mid-point of the Tribulation. The rebuilt city of Babylon will fall when it is burned to the ground in one hour near the end of the Tribulation Period.

Verse 9 – Then a third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, “If anyone worships the beast and his image, and receives his mark on his forehead or on his hand,

Verse 10 – “he himself shall also drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out full strength into the cup of His indignation. And he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb.

So many people mock the belief of an eternal hell. Are they going to believe what the “world” says or are they going to believe the Word of God. Following the Antichrist and receiving his mark, will condemn all those who do, to an eternal fire and brimstone.

Verse 11 – “And the smoke of their torment ascends forever and ever; and they have no rest day or night, who worship the beast and his image, and whoever receives the mark of his name.”

God’s love, mercy, and forgiveness become totally meaningless if there is no retribution for rebellion and sin. If there is eternal life for the believer then there is also eternal punishment for the unbeliever.

Verse 12 – Here is the patience of the saints; here are those who keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus.

Verse 13 – Then I heard a voice from heaven saying to me, “Write: ‘Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on.’ ” “Yes,” says the Spirit, “that they may rest from their labors, and their works follow them.”

A time will come during the Tribulation Period when it will be better for the saved to die than to live. They will leave their pain and grief and rest in the presence of God and their works will follow them!

The Harvest Judgment

Verse 14 – And I looked, and behold, a white cloud, and on the cloud sat One like the Son of Man, having on His head a golden crown, and in His hand a sharp sickle.

Don’t get confused, this is not he “harvest of the Church.” This is the Harvest of the Gentile Nations. It begins with the pouring out of “Vials” and ends with the battle of Armageddon.

Jesus is seated on a cloud. He has a gold crown on His head, signifying He is King of Kings! But there is a sickle in His hand which is never a good thing for harvesting good grain.

Verse 15 – And another angel came out of the temple, crying with a loud voice to Him who sat on the cloud, “Thrust in Your sickle and reap, for the time has come for You to reap, for the harvest of the earth is ripe.”

Verse 16 – So He who sat on the cloud thrust in His sickle on the earth, and the earth was reaped.

Verse 17 – Then another angel came out of the temple which is in heaven, he also having a sharp sickle.

Verse 18 – And another angel came out from the altar, who had power over fire, and he cried with a loud cry to him who had the sharp sickle, saying, “Thrust in your sharp sickle and gather the clusters of the vine of the earth, for her grapes are fully ripe.”

And yet another angel comes forth – from the altar in the heavenly temple. In Revelation 8:3, we read that this is where the martyred saints were crying out, asking God when they would be avenged.

Since Jesus is the True Vine, it is likely the “earth’s vine” is reference to the Antichrist. This cluster of grapes is the fruit of those nations that followed the Antichrist.

Verse 19 – So the angel thrust his sickle into the earth and gathered the vine of the earth, and threw it into the great winepress of the wrath of God.

Verse 20 – And the winepress was trampled outside the city, and blood came out of the winepress, up to the horses bridles, for one thousand six hundred furlongs.

When farmers go into their vineyards to harvest the grapes, they cast them into a winepress and squeeze the juice out of them. The same thing will happen to the wicked when this angel harvests the earth. They will be like grapes being squashed in a winepress.

This is really a war, a gathering of armies, bringing the whole world together to do battle. They will be assembled on the battlefield of Megiddo. This is called the battle of Armageddon.

Since the blood will rise to the horse bridles, we know that millions will be killed. This blood will expand 180 miles.

What is it that stops people from believing? The Bible says they loved darkness more than light. By the time this all takes place, the inhabitants will be so corrupt, that it will bring out the most ferocious wrath of God that the earth has ever seen.

We all have to ask ourselves; “Wouldn’t we rather avoid this Tribulation Period altogether and believe now before it’s too late?

 

 

 

 

Revelation – Chapter 13

At the close of Chapter 10, John was told to eat a little book and to prophesy about many peoples, nations, languages, and kings. In Chapter 11, John wrote about the rebuilding of the Temple, the two witnesses, and the impact they will have on the world. In Chapter 12, he wrote about Satan being cast out of heaven, and how it will affect Israel and other believers in the world.

Now in Chapter 13, John will tell us about the two powerhouses of the Tribulation Period – the Antichrist which is the political powerhouse, and the False Prophet, which is the religious powerhouse. These two end-time dictators will merge church and state. The results will be disastrous for those left on earth.

Verse 1 – Then I stood on the sand of the sea. And I saw a beast rising up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and on his horns ten crowns, and on his heads a blasphemous name.

This sea that the beast rises from, will be the sea of wickedness after the Church is gone. He will be the “Antichrist.”

The ten horns are ten rulers who will reign with the Antichrist. The seven heads have a double meaning: (1) they are seven world governments, and (2) they are seven hills where the world religion will be located for a short time. The ten crowns are the ten divisions of the last world government. It will be divided into ten divisions with each division having its own ruler and set of false religions.

Verse 2 – Now the beast which I saw was like a leopard, his feet were like the feet of a bear, and his mouth like the mouth of a lion. And the dragon gave him power, his throne, and great authority.

The Antichrist is not Satan. This beast is a world power which has been swift to shed blood: like a leopard leaping on it prey, tenacious and relentless as a bear, and all-devouring as a lion.

This beast, the Antichrist will be the incarnation of Satan. Whoever he is and whatever he does, his power comes from the pits of hell. He will form a “One World Government.”

Verse 3 – I saw one of his heads as if it had been mortally wounded, and his deadly wound was healed. And all the world marveled and followed the beast.

One of his heads, seemed to be fatally wounded, is the Antichrist. He is not actually dead because he doesn’t have that power to be raised from the dead, only Jesus Christ has that power and the few He chooses to give it to. This beast will exhibit a counterfeit and imitation resurrection. This will be the great delusion, the big lie of the Great Tribulation Period.

We are told in 2 Thessalonians 2:11 that: “And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they shall believe the lie.”

Verse 4 – So they worshiped the dragon who gave authority to the beast; and they worshiped the beast, saying, “Who is like the beast? Who is able to make war with him?”

Satan has always wanted to be worshiped. His pride is at the root of being cast out of heaven. The occult will be in charge of this blind and corrupt world. The Antichrist will also desire to be worshiped. That will be fine with Satan because he’s the one giving the power to the Antichrist.

Matthew 15:14 – “If a blind man leads a blind man, both will fall into a pit.”

Verse 5 – And he was given a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies, and he was given authority for forty-two months.

Everything that the Antichrist has or does is given to him. He has no power of his own. This boasting and blasphemy will continue the rest of the three and one-half years that are left of the seven-year Tribulation.

Verse 6 – Then he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme His name, His tabernacle, and those who dwell in heaven.

This antichrist slanders God, at the Church which is in heaven, and believers still on earth. Anything or anybody that has anything to do with God will send him into a rage!

Verse 7 – And it was granted him to make war with the saints and to overcome them. And authority was given him over every tribe, tongue, and nation.

This will be a worldwide hunt to destroy every believer. He will slaughter thousands so his Satanic religion can be established. Everyone must submit to him or be killed. Those that are killed for their faith in Christ will spend eternity with Him. Those who worship this beast are condemned to hell for all eternity.

Verse 8 – And all who dwell on the earth will worship him, whose names have not been written in the Book of Life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.

This is the “Lamb’s Book of Life” that John was referring to. All those who have been born-again and believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, have their names in this book.

Secularism is giving way to New Age mysticism as the do-it-yourself religion of our time. The gospel has been so watered down that now we have homosexuals, lesbians, and pedophiles running congregations. How sick is that? Well in end times it will be even worse!

Verse 9 – If anyone has an ear, let him hear.

Verse 10 – He who leads into captivity shall go into captivity, he who kills with the sword must be killed with the sword. Here is the patience and the faith of the saints.

Here is what I think this verse means: In the Old Testament, it was an “eye for an eye.” In the New Testament, Galatians 6:7, it says a man reaps what he sows. During the Tribulation Period, if you kill, you will be killed. In other words” for the saints of this period, leave revenge to the Almighty. And that is where faith and patience comes in.

In today’s society, our murder laws have become too lenient. Not all murders are put to death. However, in the end-times, if a person kills another, God is going to do what society will not.

The Beast Out of the Earth

Verse 11 – Then I saw another beast coming up out of the earth, and he had two horns like a lamb and spoke like a dragon.

While the first beast (the Antichrist) emerged from the sea (unrest of the troubled nations) the second beast emerges from the earth – land symbolically, it usually refers to the land that belongs to Israel. So, this second beast just might very well be a Jew.

Verse 12 – And he exercises all the authority of the first beast in his presence, and causes the earth and those who dwell in it to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed.

This beast is described as gentle as a lamb but speaks like a dragon. He will hold as much authority as the first beast. He also is the third member that makes up the un-holy trinity. He will use his authority to exalt the first beast, the Antichrist.

His deeds will betray his sweet sounding words. Instead of bringing unity, he will try to change everyone’s beliefs. He will attempt to merge religion and politics by promoting a one world religion and world government. Everyone will be ordered to worship the Antichrist and he will not hesitate to use force.

This man is the “False Prophet” who will perform great signs and miracles to deceive even the elect (read Matthew 24:24).

Verse 13 – He performs great signs, so that he even makes fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men.

Verse 14 – And he deceives those who dwell on the earth by those signs which he was granted to do in the sight of the beast, telling those who dwell on the earth to make an image to the beast who was wounded by the sword and lived.

The Apostle Paul tells us, “The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with the work of Satan displayed in all kinds of counterfeit miracles, signs and wonders, and in every sort of evil that deceives those who are perishing (II Thessalonians 2:9, 10).

The image of the antichrist will be built in the Temple at the mid-point of the Tribulation. Jesus said, “So when you see standing in the holy place ‘the abomination that causes desolation,’ spoken of through the prophet Daniel – let the reader understand – then those who are in Judea flee to the mountains” (Matthew 24:15, 16).

Verse 15 – He was granted power to give breath to the image of the beast, that the image of the beast, should both speak and cause as many as would not worship the image of the beast to be killed.

This is going to be worse than any horror movie! When the image begins to breathe, it will be a reminder that the Antichrist was once dead, but now alive.

This image will proclaim that all who do not worship it will die.

Everything that is spoken or done by someone who calls themselves a prophet, teacher of the gospel, or pastor, should be tested by the Scripture, and then you won’t be deceived.

Verse 16 – And he causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads,

Verse 17 – and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.

Verse 18 – Here is wisdom. Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man: His number is 666.

People will be allowed to select one of two different places for the mark. No one will be exempt. Those who have the mark can buy food and medicine, but those who don’t wont’ be able to buy anything. Merchants will need this mark to sell their goods also. Control over the necessities of life amounts to control over the people.

This will be a “cashless society,” having the ability to track all buying and selling.

This False Prophet will devise a perfect way to identify all the followers of Christ.

To calculate the number 666, we must realize many things have changed since John wrote Revelation. Our modern world has two sets of symbols – the alphabet and numbers. We have two systems. A letter is a letter and a number is a number. But the ancient world did not do this; they used a single set of symbols to represent both letters and numbers. Such a system is called an “alphanumeric system.” Every number is a letter, and every letter is a number.

Concerning why the Antichrist’s name will equal 666 is another matter of speculation. However, if you are born-again and are raptured with the Church, you won’t put too much thought into trying to figure out who the Antichrist will be.

This cryptic puzzle is not intended to point a finger at some unknown person.

 

 

 

 

 

Revelation – Chapter 12

At the close of Chapter 10, John was told to prophesy about many peoples, nations, languages, and kings. Chapter 11 began this prophecy which now continues into Chapter 12. Now we will learn more about Israel, Jesus, Satan, the archangel Michael, and the inhabitants of the earth.

The Woman

Verse 1 – Now a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a garland of twelve stars.

The symbol in this first sign takes us back to the Old Testament to one of the dreams of Joseph (Genesis 37:9-11). Joseph’s father Jacob interpreted the dream like this: the sun represented himself (Jacob, whose name was later changed to Israel), the moon represented his wife (Rachel), and the crown of twelve stars represented their twelve children (the 12 tribes of Israel). This family was the beginning of the nation of Israel.

The sun, moon, and the twelve stars are all associated with this woman in this chapter. She is clothed with the sun, symbol of Israel; the moon under her feet, Rachael; and a crown of garland of twelve stars, the 12 tribes  of Israel. This woman represents Israel, not the Church.

Verse 2 – Then being with child, she cried out in labor and in pain gave birth.

Before Christ’s birth, Israel was a captive nation to the Roman Empire. She had to submit to Roman leaders, pay Roman taxes, and obey Roman laws. She was a nation in travail. Before the Messiah was born, Israel had to go through many afflictions and judgments, birth pains.

The woman, then has to symbolize Israel because Christ was born of the seed of Israel.

Verse 3 – And another sign appeared in heaven: behold, a great, fiery red dragon having seven heads and ten horns, and seven diamonds on his head.

The word “dragon” in classical Greek means “serpent.” This second sign in heaven is an enormous red dragon which is Satan (explained more in 12:9). He is great because of his great power, red, since he has killed multitudes; and a dragon due to his fierce nature.

He has seven heads, symbols of world governments; ten horns, powerful kings; and seven diamonds or crowns on his head representing seven divisions controlled by the ten powerful kings.

These seven heads will symbolize the seven Gentile world governments that Satan has led since the beginning of creation. He will also have ten horns, symbolizing the ten kings that will reign with him during the entire Tribulation Period.

These ten kings will rise to power. The Antichrist will come on the scene in a unified European Community.

The Antichrist will subdue three of those ten kings so that their power will ultimately be concentrated into seven crowns (or seven divisions) of the last world government.

A one world government controlled by Satan, will make what Adolf Hitler did during WWII look like a Sunday picnic.

Verse 4 – His tail drew a third of the stars of heaven and threw them to earth. And the dragon stood before the woman who was ready to give birth, to devour her Child as soon as it was born.

These stars are angels that fell to earth. Satan’s mutiny was a tremendous rebellion against God, which involved millions of angels. Satan tried to stop the “seed of the woman” by Herod massacring innocent babies.

Verse 5 – And she bore a male Child who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron. and her Child was caught up to God and to His throne.

No doubt that the Child born is Jesus, the Anointed One. Her Child was caught up, the ascension of Christ following His death and resurrection.

Notice that Jesus will not rule the nations with love but with a “rod of iron.” When Christ returns, those whom rebelled will be crushed with an iron scepter.

Verse 6 – Then the woman fled into the wilderness where she had a place prepared by God that they should feed her there one thousand two hundred and sixty days.

Here is the gap between the “Sixty-ninth” and “Seventieth Weeks” of Daniel’s “Seventy Weeks.” John jumps over this “gap:” from the Ascension of Christ to the casting out of Satan because he is not dealing in these Tribulation chapters with the Church, but with Israel, and wishes to continue without a break.

Here is further evidence that the “Woman” is not the virgin Mary, for she does not flee into Egypt , but into the wilderness, neither does she flee with her child, for He was caught up to the Throne of God; neither does she flee for her child’s protection, but her own.

Now, we are at the midpoint of the seven-year Tribulation Period. 1,260 days (three and one half years) have past. Now there are 1,260 more days before Christ’s Second Coming.

In Matthew 24:15, 16, Jesus taught that the Temple would be defiled by an image of the Antichrist. He told those who live in Judea to flee into the mountains when that happens.

The woman, Israel, will flee into the wilderness to a place that has already been prepared for her by God.

Most prophecy experts believe the area in the Jordan desert is called Petra. Petra is an abandon city that was carved into the rocks of the mountains centuries ago. It only has one entrance, so this will be a perfect place for the Jews to hide and barricade themselves in. They will hide there 1, 260 days, the last half of the Tribulation Period.

The War in Heaven

Verse 7 – And war broke out in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon and his angels fought,

Verse 8 – but they did not prevail, nor was a place found for them in heaven any longer.

Most Christians think this took place a long time ago, not so. Because this is mentioned immediately after the woman fleeing into the wilderness, this  is still referring to the mid-point of the Tribulation Period. We know this because of the following verses.

As soon as Israel flees, a great war will erupt in heaven. The archangel will fight against Satan and his angels, but Satan will lose. They will all be cast out of heaven.

At mid-point of the Tribulation is when the Antichrist makes his move to control the earth Simultaneously, Satan makes his move to control heaven.

Verse 9 – So the great dragon was cast out, that serpent of old, called the Devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world; he was cast to the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.

When Satan and his angels are cast out of heaven and can no longer accuse the brethren, his concentration will be totally focused on the “woman”, Israel.

Verse 10 – Then I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, “Now salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren, who accused them before our God day and night, has been cast down.

Today, Satan is the accuser of believers. He parades before the throne of God day and night pointing out the sins of God’s people. However, Christ is there too, defending us. Once Satan is cast out of heaven he will never be allowed in again, but woe to the inhabitants of the earth.

Verse 11 – “And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to death.

Believers will have the power to overcome Satan during the Tribulation Period by: (1) trusting in the blood of the Lamb, because through the blood, atonement was made for our sins; (2) testifying to our faith, because if we acknowledge Jesus before men, he will acknowledge us before God; and (3) not fearing death, because a physical death is far better than an eternity in hell.

Verse 12 – “Therefore rejoice, O heavens, and you who dwell in them! Woe to the inhabitants of the earth and the sea! For the devil has come down to you, having great wrath, because he knows that he has a short time.”

For those of you with a little age on you, can you ever remember a time when people were so blatant with their sin, even in the house of God? There is no shame anymore of the disgusting things people do. Well, during this Tribulation Period, for those who choose to live through it, it will be 100 times worse.

Verse 13 – Now when the dragon saw that he had been cast to the earth, he persecuted the woman who gave birth to the male child.

Verse 14 – But the woman was given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness to her place, where she is nourished for a time and times and half a time, from the presence of the serpent.

Just as the Woman and the Dragon are symbols, Israel and Satan, so are the “Eagle’s Wings.” This pertains to a rapid and safe flight of Israel into the wilderness, where she will be nourished and kept safe for three and one half years.

This provision and protection of Israel during this time, will be supernatural as in the days of Moses when they were in the wilderness. God fed them with manna, a quail, provided water, and did not allow their clothes or sandals to wear out!

Verse 15 – So the serpent spewed water out of his mouth like a flood after the woman, that  he might cause her to be carried away by the flood.

Some do not take this verse literally and mean it to refer to a great army that goes after Israel when she flees. However, I see no reason to not take it at face value for what is says. John knows what an army was and is, so if he wanted to say “army” he would have. “Water” is water!

Verse 16 – But the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened its mouth and swallowed up the flood which the dragon had spewed out of his mouth.

Creation is ultimately a witness for righteousness and truth. God is in full control of the earth and its fullness there of, so the earth opens and the flood disappears before it can reach God’s people. God swallowed the armies of Egypt when they were pursuing the Israelites after leaving Egypt, so why can’t He do it again?

Verse 17 – And the dragon was enraged with the woman, and he went to make war with the rest of her offspring, who keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.

Unable to get to he woman (Israel), the devil (the dragon) turns aside to wage war against the Gentile saints. The Gentiles are called the rest of her offspring because they are Christs’ other sheep that are not in the Jewish fold.