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Let's Study The Revelation
by Dr. Jack Hyles
For a year and a half I taught the Book of Revelation to the midweek crowds of the Miller Road Baptist Church in Garland, Texas. This study was begun in 1953. Hundreds of the people asked that the notes of this study be published. After some deliberation and prayer, we felt led to publish them. For years these notes have been sold under the title of RICHES FROM REVELATION. Now re-edited, re-named, and re-bound, we prayerfully submit them again for your study.
During this study the crowd at the Miller Road
Baptist Church midweek service grew from 21 to an average of 625. This is
not by any means a scholarly study; it is simply a compilation of the actual
notes that were used in the aforementioned series. It is for the layman and
not the theologian.
First Baptist Church
REASONS SOME OPPOSE THE STUDY OF REVELATION:
SOME SAY THAT REVELATION CANNOT BE UNDERSTOOD.
If this be true, then the Holy Spirit is falling down
on His job to reveal the truth of the Scripture.
OTHERS SAY THAT THEY WILL LEAVE OFF REVELATION AND SIMPLY PREACH THE GOSPEL.
God has charged us to preach the Word. Revelation is
part of that Word.
SOME HAVE SAID JOHN WAS AN OLD MAN WHEN HE WROTE REVELATION AND WAS MENTALLY WEAK.
Anyone who will say this denies the inspiration of a
portion of the Bible and is of his father, the Devil.
SOME SAY THAT SINCE REVELATION WAS WRITTEN IN A TIME OF DANGER FOR CHRISTIANS
JOHN HAD TO WRITE COMPLETELY IN SYMBOLS SO AS NOT TO BE PERSECUTED.
Revelation was written in the same decade and by the same man as First, Second, and Third John.
Why, then, were they not also written in symbols?
STILL OTHERS SAY THAT IT IS TOO DEEP FOR THEM.
The only reason for the Bible being too deep for anybody is found in I Corinthians 2:14.
DATE OF THE BOOK....96 A.D.
Author (writer)...THE APOSTLE JOHN, who was alone on
the Island of Patmos.
INTRODUCTION: Revelation 1:1-3.
"THE REVELATION" The word means: unveiling,
uncovering, presentation, appearing, coming (as in a great performance when
the curtain is pulled and the star is unveiled). The same word was used when
Paul saw Jesus on the Damascus Road. This Book, above all, shows the Lord
Jesus Christ and reveals Him to us. Hence, one who does not know Revelation
cannot know Jesus as he should. What a shame that so many are so ignorant
concerning this wonderful Book.
"WHICH GOD GAVE UNTO HIM." This probably means that
God has given His Son the glory of the coming Revelation because of the
suffering that He endured. He shall avenge His death on the cross when He
comes in His glory.
The word "servants" means literally, "bondservants." A
bondservant was one who had completed his time as a slave, but out of love
for his master had volunteered to continue to be a servant. This is the kind
of servant God wants.
"Shortly" in this verse means "speedily" or "surely."
In other words there is no doubt that the things written in this Book will
come to pass.
You will note that this message was given to John by
an angel. Read Revelation 22:9. Some think that this teaches that this
particular heavenly messenger was one of the Old Testament prophets. This
may be true.
We find the writer in this verse. It was John, the
apostle. We will find in verse 2 which John it was speaking of in verse 1.
This verse says that the John verse 1 mentions is the
one who bore record that Jesus was the WORD, and wrote that Jesus was the
Son of God. Read John 1:1 and John 20:31 and you will see that it was the
same John who wrote both books.
Notice that God promises a blessing to those who study
Revelation. Let us notice whom He promises to bless:
Those who read.
Those who hear.
Those who keep. ("Keep" means "to guard with care." So
you can see that God will bless anyone who will observe or study
You will notice also we are to study these things
because "the time is at hand." It is always at hand. In other words, it
could happen any minute. We are to WATCH at all times because it could be
The word "blessed" in this verse means happy, contented, etc. The reason is that those who are looking for Jesus to come are the happiest people in all the world. Communism, atomic bombs, wars, etc., cannot keep the person from being happy who is looking up every day for the return of the King.
God also seems to abundantly bless the churches who
believe and study Revelation.
Note: Let us notice again the meaning of the word,
"Revelation." It is called in the Greek the "Apocalypse." This word means to
manifest or reveal. Its twin word "Apocrypha" means to conceal or hide. From
these two words we have the true meaning of the Book: "TO REVEAL THAT WHICH
HAD BEEN HIDDEN."
SALUTATION: Revelation 1:4-8.
In these verses John is greeting the churches to whom
he is writing. There were many things wrong with the churches and yet John
takes time to greet them in a courteous way. There is a lesson here, real
Christianity is courteous. To be unfriendly and curt is not Christian.
Notice that John was writing to seven churches. Seven is God?s number of completion. So He is writing it to all churches. It isn?t nice not to read your mail, so for a church to leave off Revelation is a breach of good manner.
(Numbers have significant meaning in the Bible. For
example, one is the number of beginnings; two is the number of separation;
three is the number of the Trinity; four is the earth?s number; six is man?s
number; seven is God?s number of completion; eight is the number of new
beginning; ten is the number of testing, etc.)
It was written to churches. These were young churches.
Nowadays, people say that Revelation is too hard for us to understand, yet
the Book was written to young churches.
Note that he says, "GRACE BE UNTO YOU AND PEACE" It
was the custom of the Jews to greet each other with the phrase, "Peace be
unto you." John went a step further and added grace to that because there
can be no real peace unless there has been grace for our sins first. In
other words, a person who has never been saved cannot know true peace.
AND FROM THE SEVEN SPIRITS. Remember that seven is
God?s perfect number of completeness. To find the real meaning of the seven
spirits, read Isaiah 11:2.
"AND FROM JESUS CHRIST." Think of it. A letter from
One so important as Jesus Christ.
"WHO IS THE FAITHFUL WITNESS." I believe that this
means that Jesus is our legal witness before God. In a trial there is always
the " key witness." When we stand before God, Jesus will say that He
witnessed our conversion experience, and will be our witness.
Notice the word " prince." It should be " ruler." He
is the King of kings and is going to reign someday on the earth for one
thousand blessed years.
" UNTO HIM THAT LOVED US" should be " Unto him that
loves us." Not only did He love us enough to die for us, but He loves us now
as much as ever. His love never grows stale.
" AND WASHED US" can also be rendered " And freed us."
He untied our chains, and has freed us from the bondage of sin.
" AND HATH MADE US KINGS" is better translated, " And
hath made us a kingdom of priests." We are to be a kingdom when Jesus comes.
John here is looking forward to the one thousand years of peace that Christ
will bring with Him when He comes.
" TO HIM BE GLORY." The thought of the coming King
thrilled John, so he says, " Glory to God."
" AMEN." The word means," Let it be done." John says
that he likes what he sees and is anxious for it to happen. Are you anxious
for the King to come?
" BEHOLD, HE COMETH WITH CLOUDS." Verse 6 can only
take place when verse 7 takes place. Jesus must come before the Kingdom can
come. Some believe that we can bring in a kingdom of peace and then Jesus
will come. There will be no kingdom until the King comes.
" BEHOLD" means " look." John was probably carried
away and shouted, " Look, He cometh."
" WITH CLOUDS." His throne shall be the clouds. Have
you ever been above the clouds and looked down? What a beautiful picture
that shall be when Jesus comes with the clouds.
" ALL KINDRED OF THE EARTH SHALL WAIL." Why? Because
when He comes here, we will be with Him, and the people who will be on the
earth for the most part will be the lost who have been in the Great
Tribulation. They are Christ rejectors and have a right to mourn.
" EVEN SO, AMEN." This means " Yes, let it happen."
John had to say " Amen" every once in a while. He couldn?t wait. He was
looking for Jesus to come at any moment.
"I AM THE ALPHA AND OMEGA." These are the first and
the last letters of the Greek alphabet. It is like saying, "I am the A to
Z." Jesus is everything. He meets every need. A little boy said,"The Lord is
my Shepherd and that?s all I want."
"THE ALMIGHTY." Read Isaiah 9:6. Note: In concluding
the salutation, let us go back to verse 7 and the "Even so, amen." It
teaches at least two important things:
An affirmation of the fact that these things shall take place.
An expression of joy by John because of the thought that Jesus is coming.
JOHN?S VISION OF JESUS: Revelation 1:9-20.
"JOHN." Notice the simple title, "John." He used no
high sounding titles to impress.
"WHO ALSO AM YOUR BROTHER. " John would rather be
called "brother. " To be called "brother "is the highest title that one
Christian can give another.
"AND COMPANION. " "Companion "really means
"co-laborer. " John put himself on the plain level. He did not want to be
high and above the layman. God does not intend in this age for the preacher
to dress higher or think of himself higher than the laymen.
"IN TRIBULATION, AND IN THE KINGDOM. " John could not
get his mind off the Kingdom that Jesus was going to establish. He was
exiled on a lonely, barren island, but he did not complain. He found joy in
thinking of the coming Kingdom.
"AND PATIENCE OF JESUS CHRIST. " The literal
translation is, "The patient waiting for Jesus Christ. " The Bible teaches
that often the saints in Heaven say, "How much longer, Lord? " We should be
praying the prayer, "Even so, come, Lord Jesus. "
"WAS IN THE ISLE THAT IS CALLED PATMOS, FOR THE WORD
OF GOD AND FOR THE TESTIMONY OF JESUS CHRIST. " John tells here why he was
on the Isle: 1. For the Word of the Lord (because he dared preach the Word).
2. Because he testified for Jesus. Many preachers are almost exiled today
who preach the Word as it is.
"I WAS IN THE SPIRIT ON THE LORD?S DAY. " The word
"was "is translated "became. "
"AND HEARD BEHIND ME A GREAT VOICE, AS OF A TRUMPET. "
When God speaks of the last days, He often makes mention of a trumpet. When
Jesus comes, He will come with the sound of a trumpet. Oh, to be in the
Spirit at the sound of the trumpet.
The next thing on God?s timetable is the trumpet. The
blowing of the trumpet means two things:
Get up in the morning (resurrection)
This verse deals with the letters being sent to the
seven churches. John sent them their orders. Notice that they were orders
from God. Let us be careful that we take our orders only from Him.
"AND I TURNED TO SEE THE VOICE. " This is Jesus. Note John 1:1 and Genesis 3:8.
"I SAW SEVEN GOLDEN CANDLESTICKS. " Read verse 20 for
the key to this.
Notice who is in the middle of the churches. It was
the job of the high priest to keep the candlestick of the Tabernacle in
order. So it is the job of our High Priest to keep His churches in order.
LOOK AT JESUS.
Hair like snow (purest thing in all the world).
Eyes as a flame of fire.
Feet like fine brass.
Countenance as the sun.
WHAT A PICTURE!! John saw Jesus. Someday we shall see
In verse 16 read, ?AND HE HAD IN HIS RIGHT HAND SEVEN
STARS. " For the key to this read verse 20. Angel means messenger. It
probably referred to the pastors. What a joy to know that Jesus holds His
preachers in His right hand.
Tells us what John did when he saw Jesus. Jesus
answered "FEAR NOT. " To those of us who know Jesus we need not fear His
coming, as He is coming to reward us.
"FOR EVERMORE "means "Into the ages upon ages, "not
"through, "but "into. "
This is the outline verse of the Book.
Things which thou has seen. (Chapter 1)
Things which are. (Chapters 2 and 3)
Things which shall be hereafter. (Chapters 4 through
THE LETTER TO THE CHURCH AT EPHESUS:
"UNTO THE ANGEL. " The word "angel "means "messenger.
" Probably this pertained to the pastor of the church. Why do you suppose
that Jesus was writing to the pastor? It was probably because no church can
rise any higher than its pastor. The same is true with a Sunday School class
or any organization. The class will rise no higher than its leaders.
"OF THE CHURCH OF EPHESUS. " "Ephesus "means "love. "
This is the greatest need of every church. How would you like for Jesus to
come back and find you and a fellow church member at variance? "I don?t like
her, " "She did it first, "and "I just can?t stand him "are not words of the
true child of God.
"THESE THINGS SAITH HE THAT HOLDETH THE SEVEN STARS IN
HIS RIGHT HAND. " Read verse 20 of chapter one for the explanation. The
stars are the messengers or pastors. Thank God He holds us in His right
hand. Read John 10:27-30.
"WHO WALKETH IN THE MIDST OF THE SEVEN GOLDEN
CANDLESTICKS. " In 1:20 you find that the candlesticks are the churches. So
you see that Jesus walks in the midst of the churches. Imagine Him walking
in may of our present-day churches.
"I KNOW THY WORKS, AND THEY LABOUR. " It was a working
church. Thank God for churches that work. On the other hand there are many
churches that are working who are not yet satisfying the Lord Jesus. This
church could get many men to come to help work on the building; they could
get ladies to cook and sew for the needy; they could get a large crowd at
the Worker?s Conference, and yet they were not working for Jesus. There is a
difference in church work and Jesus work.
"AND HOW THOU CANST NOT BEAR THEM WHICH ARE EVIL. "
This church hated sin. How we need churches today who hate sin and fight it.
Sam Jones used to say that when he first started preaching he was afraid
that he would make somebody man, and that later on he was afraid that he
wouldn?t make anybody mad.
"AND THOU HAST TRIED THEM WHICH SAY THEY ARE APOSTLES, AND ARE NOT, AND HAST FOUND THEM LIARS. " This church was sound in the faith. Yet God was not pleased with it.
Lots of folks are sound on baptism but are not
Lots of folks are sound on soul winning but are not
Let?s get our doctrine on fire for God.
This verse probably means that they had borne reproach
for Jesus? Name. His name has never been popular in this world. To be a real
church means bearing His reproach. When a church really gets down to
business for God, there is going to be a certain stigma about it. Thank God
for the privilege of bearing reproach for Jesus.
In this verse Jesus says the bad things that He has to say about the church. Notice that He says everything good first before he mentions a single bad thing. Wouldn?t this be a wonderful world if we would do the same thing?
"THOU HAST LEFT THY FIRST LOVE. " Much like newlyweds
whose love lessens with the years, often churches lose their first love. Let
us always keep the sweet, pure love of our honeymoon with Jesus!
"REMEMBER THEREFORE FROM WHENCE THOU ART FALLEN, AND
REPENT. " Repent means "to turn around. " What Jesus is saying is to get
back on your honeymoon. Suppose a married couple could regain the sweet love
they had when they first married, wouldn?t it be wonderful?
"AND DO THE FIRST WORKS. " What are the first works of
a new Christian? Telling somebody else about Jesus, of course. Let us get
back to it.
"OR ELSE I WILL COME UNTO THEE QUICKLY. " Jesus tells
them that He wants to find them winning souls when He comes again. Oh, to be
pleasing Him when He comes.
"AND WILL REMOVE THY CANDLESTICK. " The candlestick in
1:20 is the church. Some churches have ceased to be real churches because
they left soul winning and Jesus removed their power. Let us guard the power
that we have lest we find ourselves without our candlestick.
Note the word "Nicolaitanes. " It means to "rule the
people. " God does not expect a church to be ruled by anyone. It is a
spiritual democracy. A true New Testament church has no place for bishops,
popes, etc. We take our orders only from God.
"HE THAT HATH AN EAR, LET HIM HEAR WHAT THE SPIRIT
SAITH UNTO THE CHURCHES. " It means a spiritual ear. In other words, "you
who are spiritual, hear these things. "
THE TREE OF LIFE is for the healing of the nation as
mentioned in Revelation 22:2. Thank God for the provisions He has made for
THE LETTER TO THE CHURCH AT SMYRNA:
"AND UNTO THE ANGEL OF THE CHURCH IN SMYRNA WRITE. "
The word "Smyrna "is the same word for "myrrh, " which was a sweet smelling
perfume. This church was a fragrance to the Lord. They were willing to
suffer for Jesus.
"THESE THINGS SAITH THE FIRST. " That forever settles
the possibility of evolution. Jesus was first and made man from dust.
"AND THE LAST. " That settles what is going to happen
in the future. When all else is gone, Jesus will be here. This is a day when
everyone seems to be worrying about the future. I do not know what the
future hold, but I know that Jesus holds the future.
"WHICH WAS DEAD, AND IS ALIVE. " This is a
encouragement to the suffering people at Smyrna. They were facing death for
Jesus. He reminds them that He rose from the grave and that they will too.
Jesus was saying, "They killed me too, Smyrna, but I got up again. "
"I KNOW THY WORKS, AND TRIBULATION, AND POVERTY. "
They did not have a lovely building to draw folks. They had no carpets, no
stained glass windows, no rich members, no prestige in the community, but
they had the approval of God.
"(BUT THOU ART RICH). " They were rich in things that
money cannot buy. You cannot buy the power of God or spirit of unity among
the church members. I know many churches who would gladly trade big
buildings for a sweet spirit.
"WHICH SAY THEY ARE JEWS, AND ARE NOT. " Could this
apply to the folks who say that all Anglo-Saxons are Jews (or the real
"BUT ARE THE SYNAGOGUE OF SATAN. " "Synagogue "means
"gathering together. " The word "church "means "called out. " We have too
many gatherings today where the people have never been called out. The Devil
has his churches. A church that does not teach salvation by grace, the blood
of Jesus, etc., is a church of the Devil.
"BE THOU FAITHFUL. " What a command. The one thing God
wants from His churches is faithfulness.
"FAITHFUL UNTO DEATH, AND I WILL GIVE THEE A CROWN OF
LIFE. " This has nothing to do with salvation. It simply refers to rewards.
God is going to give a special crown to the faithful. Will you get one?
"SHALL NOT BE HURT OF THE SECOND DEATH "can be
translated to this: "is not about to go to the lake of fire. " Read
THE LETTER TO THE CHURCH AT PERGAMOS:
The word "Pergamos "means "marriage. "
"THESE THINGS SAITH HE WHICH HATH THE SHARP SWORD WITH
TWO EDGES. " This sword is the Word of God, as taught in Ephesians 6:17.
This shows us that Jesus is bringing judgment upon the church at Pergamos.
When a person is cut he cries. The same is true with a church that is cold
and indifferent. When someone preaches the Gospel to them, they cry like
"I KNOW...WHERE THOU DWELLEST, EVEN WHERE SATAN?S SEAT
IS. " The word "seat "should be translated "throne. " This church was living
where Satan?s throne was. Where is Satan?s throne? Read II Corinthians 4:4
and John 12:31. Satan?s throne is in the world. Occasionally someone says,
"God is on the throne of this world. " THAT IS NOT SO. The god of this world
is Satan himself.
From this, we find that this was a worldly church.
Isn?t that a picture of the churches in many places today? Many have gone
out of the soul-saving business into a recreation business. We have brought
dances, card games, movies, pool tables, etc., right into the church house.
God take us back to the business of winning souls to Jesus and get us out of
the world. The drawing card of church is Jesus. That?s enough.
"AND THOU HOLDEST FAST MY NAME. " They believed that
Jesus was God?s son. There are some among us who deny that Jesus is the Son
of God. There are preachers who do not believe that Jesus is God?s Son. Yet
this is not our greatest danger. Our greatest danger lies in the same place
as that of Pergamos. Though we are fundamentally sound, we are getting more
worldly by the day.
"AND HAST NOT DENIED MY FAITH. " They were straight on
the plan of salvation. They did not believe that works were essential to
being saved. They were straight on that and yet they were worldly. Brother,
what you believe will not do you a big of good if it does not change your
"EVEN IN THOSE DAYS WHEREIN ANTIPAS WAS MY FAITHFUL
MARTYR, WHO WAS SLAIN AMONG YOU, WHERE SATAN DWELLETH. " The word "martyr
"means "witness. " Thank God for those who are willing to witness for Jesus.
BUT I HAVE A FEW THINGS AGAINST THEE, BECAUSE THOU HAST THERE THEM THAT HOLD THE DOCTRINE OF BALAAM. " Read Numbers 22 and Numbers 31:36 for the story of Balaam:
Note these facts about Balaam:
He would not go to wicked King Balak in order to gain
money for himself, but to please him he did go to him when God had forbidden
him. He was a popularity seeker.
He caused the Israelites to intermarry and to tolerate
idolatry. Since "Pergamos "means marriage, then could we not say that this
doctrine was tied in with the fact that the members of this church were
married to the world, where Satan dwelleth?
What God says in this verse could be translated
thusly: "Get out of the world before I come. I don?t want to find you in the
world when I come again. "
"TO HIM THAT OVERCOMETH WILL I GIVE TO EAT OF THE
HIDDEN MANNA. " The spiritual interpretation is this: God has hidden truths
to teach us, but he will not let us understand them if we are living in the
world. When we come out of the world, God lets us understand the hidden
truths of His Word.
"AND WILL GIVE HIM A WHITE STONE, AND IN THE STONE A
NEW NAME WRITTEN. " Praise God, He will engrave my name in Heaven. My name
is in the Book of Life right now. Is yours?
"WHICH NO MAN KNOWETH SAVING HE THAT RECEIVETH IT. "
No man knows your condition before God right now save you. Would you search
your heart and find if you are right with God?
THE LETTER TO THE CHURCH AT THYATIRA:
"THESE THINGS SAITH THE SON OF GOD. " If man had said
these things, he would certainly have been criticized, so God reminds us
that these things were said by Jesus. Bible preaching is hard preaching.
When we preach the truth of Jesus, we must say some hard things and yet we
must always say them in a tender spirit of love, as a parent who finds it
necessary to punish a child.
"WHO HATH HIS EYES LIKE UNTO A FLAME OF FIRE, AND HIS
FEET ARE LIKE FINE BRASS. " Brass is a symbol of judgment. God may be
reminding Thyatira that certain judgment will come because of their sins.
"I KNOW THEY WORKS, AND CHARITY [LOVE], AND SERVICE,
AND FAITH, AND THY PATIENCE. " Notice that all of the good things that God
said about this church are positive things. They stood for some things but
did not stand against anything. Here was a church that did many good things,
but did not take a strong stand against evil. Our Gospel is both positive
You will also notice that this church was rich in
social service. God did not commend them for soul winning. His commendations
were for social service. That is good, but social service is not the main
service of the New Testament church. To build hospitals, schools, etc., is
good, but they are second to the reaching of men for Jesus. If we spent as
much time doing soul service as we do social service, God would be pleased.
"AND THY WORKS; AND THE LAST TO BE MORE THAN THE
FIRST. " Note that it was a growing church. Its last works were more than
the first ones. Growth is not the only sign of a true church. In fact, it
may not be a sign at all. Big reports and added membership are good, but not
the sign of a real New Testament church.
"NOTWITHSTANDING I HAVE A FEW THINGS AGAINST THEE,
BECAUSE THOU SUFFEREST THAT WOMAN JEZEBEL. " Notice the word, "sufferest. "
It means "to allow. " This church allowed sin to creep in. It did not judge
sin and condemn it. It tolerated sin. A person can live like he wants to in
many churches and never get his sins condemned.
Notice the woman, Jezebel. There was a wife of a wicked king in the Old Testament named Jezebel. She dominated her husband. Obviously, Jesus was calling some woman in this church "a Jezebel. " Note these things about this Jezebel:
She was worldly.
She was out of her place
Probably tried to run the church.
Led in the church when she should have taken the place of a woman which the Bible says is to follow.
It is believed that she may have been the preacher?s
wife. Women preacher and bossy women are an abomination to God.
"TO TEACH AND TO SEDUCE MY SERVANTS TO COMMIT
FORNICATION. " "Seduce "means to "mislead. " She shouldn?t have been allowed
to teach in this church. This church was just too sweet to make the Devil
"AND TO EAT THINGS SACRIFICED UNTO IDOLS. " This was
the eating of the lambs, etc., that had been offered as a sacrifice to
idols. It was not wrong in itself, but was doubtful and not to be eaten
(Romans 14). Churches need to be taught to abstain from doubtful things.
Verse 21, 22:
The rapture will not eve affect a church like this
unless she repents. It will be left here during the Great Tribulation that
is to come upon the earth after the true saints have gone up to meet Jesus
in the air. The tribulation will last for seven years and will be a period
of terrible wars and events. Thank God! I?ll be with Jesus. Will you?
In this verse Jesus reminds us that He will judge
every church. We must stand the test before the judgment of God, so we need
to watch our churches that they stay pure. Let us keep our program one of
simply preaching, praying, and teaching the Word of God.
Verse 24, 25:
Jesus tells the real believers in this church to "Hold
Fast "until He comes. In these days of darkness and apostasy, let us hold to
the truth and look up for Jesus to come.
Look at those promises. God says that we will rule the
nations. This refers to the one thousand years reign of peace upon the earth
when we shall rule the earth with Jesus. Read Revelation 20:1-6. I makes the
load lighter now when we realize that one day we will be kings and priests
and shall rule and reign with Jesus.
Notice that the morning is coming. It is spiritual
night now. It is hard to stand up for Jesus and live the kind of life that
God wants us to live, but morning is coming when Jesus is on the throne.
Let us hear what the Spirit says to the churches and
apply these teaching to our own church.
THE LETTER TO THE CHURCH AT SARDIS:
"AND UNTO THE ANGEL OF THE CHURCH IN SARDIS WRITE;
THESE THINGS SAITH HE THAT HATH THE SEVEN SPIRITS OF GOD, AND THE SEVEN
STARS. " You will notice in chapter 1, verse 20, that the seven stars are
the angels, and the angels are the messengers or probably pastors. Hence you
will notice the close association here of the Spirit and the pastors. We
desperately need Spirit-filled pastors today. When churches call a pastor,
they ask about his education, manners, personality, etc., but the main thing
is to be filled with the spirit.
"THOU HAST A NAME THAT THOU LIVEST, AND ART DEAD. "
What a pity. This church had a good name. They turned in good reports. They
had a fine reputation. They baptized people. They grew, but they were dead.
"BE WATCHFUL. " One of the fastest ways to wake up a
dead church is to get the members to be watching for Jesus to come. I do not
know of a single dead church that is looking for Jesus to come. The two just
do not go together. By the way, you cannot be very watchful if you believe
that the world must be converted before Jesus can come.
"AND STRENGTHEN THE THINGS WHICH REMAIN, THAT ARE
READY TO DIE. " In other words, God is saying, "Save the remains. " The
remains of many a church could be set on fire, and the church could be
revived. If this doesn?t happen, you might as well have a funeral for the
church and bury the remains.
"FOR I HAVE NOT FOUND THY WORKS PERFECT BEFORE GOD. "
The word "perfect " means "mature. " In other words, the folks at this
church were not doing mature work for Jesus. mature works are: soul winning,
praying, preaching, and studying the Bible. Why do we need to have so many
new things for the folks to do today when we haven?t done the ones God gave
us to do yet?
"REMEMBER THEREFORE HOW THOU HAST RECEIVED AND HEARD,
AND HOLD FAST, AND REPENT. " This church received the truth and had left it.
God tells them to hold on to what they had.
"IF THEREFORE THOU SHALT NOT WATCH, I WILL COME ON
THEE AS A THIEF, AND THOU SHALT NOT KNOW WHAT HOUR I WILL COME UPON THEE. "
What does a thief do? He steals. The greatest "steal " will be when Jesus
steals us away and carries us into the skies. Let us keep looking for Jesus
every day lest He find us not ready for His coming.
"THOU HAST A FEW NAMES. ": There were just a few left
who loved God, who won souls, who came to prayer meeting, and who loved the
Word of God. I believe that their greatest sin was staying in Sardis. I do
not believe that God would want one of His children to freeze to death in a
dead church, even if Grandma did go there.
"EVEN IN SARDIS. " What a statement. Even in Sardis
there were some who loved God.
"AND THEY SHALL WALK WITH ME IN WHITE: FOR THEY ARE
WORTHY. " These are those who are going to be stolen by Jesus. While the
"dead " ones are going through the tribulation, we will be walking in white
"AND I WILL NOT BLOT HIS NAME OUT OF THE BOOK OF LIFE.
" God has a book of the names of every man. Those who fail to trust Him as
Saviour are blotted out of His book, but those of us who have been born
again are listed in His book.
"BUT I WILL CONFESS HIS NAME BEFORE MY FATHER, AND
BEFORE HIS ANGELS. " Thank God, Jesus is confessing my name here tonight. He
will confess you, too, if you will confess Him before men.
THE LETTER TO THE CHURCH AT PHILADELPHIA:
"AND TO THE ANGEL OF THE CHURCH IN PHILADELPHIA WRITE.
" The word "Philadelphia " means "brotherly love. " This was a church of
believers who loved each other. How refreshing in a day when so many
churches are splitting in two for lack of love. Let?s keep loving each
other. People who love God can tell when they walk into a church if the
people love each other or not.
"HE THAT OPENTH, AND NO MAN SHUTTETH. " God reminds
them that if the door is to be left open, he is the One who will do it. If
souls constantly walk the aisles, it is God who keeps the door open. Note
also that when God opens a door, no man can shut it. Praise God! No human
enemy can bother a church when God keeps the door open.
"AND SHUTTETH, AND NO MAN OPENETH. " When God so
desires, He can withdraw His power from a church and close the door. A man
told me recently that his church was growing and the folks were visiting,
but no one was walking the aisles. Brother, it is God alone who can open and
shut the door. Many a church has had its doors shut and could not reopen
them. The same is true with denominations and individual Christians.
"BEHOLD, I HAVE SET BEFORE THEE AN OPEN DOOR. " This
church had an open door. let us notice three reasons why God had kept their
They had a little strength.
They had kept the Word of God
They had not denied the name of Jesus.
The reason that the doors of a spiritual power have
been closed to many churches is that they have ceased to believe that the
Bible is the Word of God. They do not preach the Word anymore. They do not
believe that Jesus is the Son of God, that the blood is essential for
salvation, and other fundamental Bible truths. God have mercy on this
generation of so-called churches.
Judging from verse 8, this church was a small church.
In this verse, Jesus promises that there shall be a day when the false
churches will have to fall down and worship the true church and admit their
The key word in this verse is "FROM. " It means "out
of. " We are to be kept out of the hour of temptation that is going to come.
What is the hour of temptation? It is the Great Tribulation that is going to
last seven years, when Satan is turned loose and the greatest of all wars,
famines, etc., shall take place. This verse teaches that all real churches
will be taken out of this period. We will be with Jesus during this time.
Praise God! Just as Noah was taken out before the flood, we shall be taken
out before the Great Tribulation.
Note also the word "KEEP. " It means "guard. " Jesus
is guarding us from the coming tribulation.
"BEHOLD, I COME QUICKLY. " Why is He coming quickly?
To take them out of the tribulation.
?THAT NO MAN TAKE THY CROWN. " "Take " could be
translated "receive. " What crown? There is a crown to be given for loving
the appearing of Jesus. This church was to get that crown. Will you get this
one? Are you loving the appearing of Jesus?
"PILLAR. " We may not have much strength here, but we
shall be pillars there. My, what bodies we shall have, as strong as the
pillars of the Temple of God.
"AND HE SHALL GO NO MORE OUT. " Vacations end, week
ends end, honeymoons end, but there will be no leaving in Heaven. No
"AND I WILL WRITE UPON HIM THE NAME OF MY GOD. " Read
Revelation 22:4. We will be branded for Jesus. Imagine. God?s name, Jesus?
name, the name of the city of Heaven all written on us. Just as cattlemen
brand their cattle, so Jesus will have us branded for Him.
Let us hear what the Lord says and make our church
like the church at Philadelphia. Thank God for the true churches left today
even though they be few in number.
THE LETTER TO THE CHURCH AT LAODICEA:
"AND UNTO THE ANGEL OF THE CHURCH OF THE LAODICEANS
WRITE. " The word "Laodicea " means "please the people. " Galatians 1:10
says that you cannot please the people and God at the same time.
"THESE THINGS SAITH THE AMEN. " The word "amen " means
"So let it be " or "it will be so. " Jesus is reminding the people that His
prophesies will transpire just as He had said they would.
"THE FAITHFUL AND TRUE WITNESS. " A witness tells what
he has seen. Jesus sees all that goes on in our churches, and one day He
will witness concerning what He has seen.
"COLD " is the same word that is used for ice water.
Isn?t that a pretty good description of many churches?
The word "HOT " means "burning " or "fervent. "
Wouldn?t it be wonderful if our churches were really on fire for God.
This sums up most of us - NEITHER COLD NOR HOT. In
other words, as spoken in the next verse, they were lukewarm. Have you ever
drunk coffee or a hot drink that was nearly cool. Have you ever drunk iced
tea when it was nearly warm? How awful it tastes. How awful for a child of
God who is supposed to be on fire for God to be lukewarm.
Did you know that lukewarmness sends more folks to
Hell than just about anything else? The world has more respect for a
drunkard in the gutter than for a Christian who is half and half and
lukewarm. How many times have I heard a lost person hide behind a lukewarm
Christian and say "I am as good as he is. "
"SPUE " means "vomit. " God says that a lukewarm
Christian makes Him want to vomit. "Well...I?m not so bad "... "I?m sort of
lukewarm " are the comments of many that I visit. God says they are vomit.
What does the doctor give someone when he wants him to
vomit? Lukewarm water is the answer.
Notice in the first part of the verse what the church
said about itself. They had beautiful furnishings, prestige, and were
Note what God says about them:
Poor. They were just the opposite of Smyrna.
Naked. Laodicea was one of the most fashionable cities of that day. Yet God said they were naked.
Blind. (Nearsighted.) They were blind to souls,
missions, etc. Imagine (if you can) this letter being read at the Sunday
morning worship hour at Laodicea. Can?t you just see the anger on faces of
Notice that there was hope for this church. Many a
cold, dead church has been set on fire for God. Many a preacher has been set
on fire for God, such as Wesley, William Booth, Luther, and others.
Note the prescription that God gave them: Eyesalve.
Eyesalve first hurts, then blinds, then heals.
"AS MANY AS I LOVE, I REBUKE AND CHASTEN. " The parent
who doesn?t spank his child doesn?t love him. A preacher who will not stand
against the sins of his people doesn?t love them. God shows us His love by
"BE ZEALOUS THEREFORE, AND REPENT. " In other words,
get on fire for God.
"BEHOLD, I STAND AT THE DOOR, AND KNOCK. " This really
should be interpreted "Behold, I am taking My stand at the door. " Jesus
stands outside the door of cold, lukewarm churches. He is always there
asking for admission. What a pity.
"IF ANY MAN HEAR MY VOICE. " Just one person can turn
the tide sometimes. If just one person would get on fire, many churches
would get on fire.
Notice He will "SUP " with us. Supper is the evening
meal. When the church is so worldly as this it is a sign that the morning
when Christ is coming is near. Supper is at night. What a joy in a world of
night to sup with Jesus.
He is speaking about the Millennium here when we shall
reign with Jesus upon the earth. We shall have the same relationship to Him
then as He has to the Father now.
We are now through with the study of the churches.
What have we gained? Is it going to make our a better church for Jesus? Go
over the seven churches and pick out one good thing that we should have from
all and one bad thing that we should avoid. God help our churches to be one
hundred per cent New Testament churches.
Of course, as you will recall, "rapture " means
"caught away. " It refers to the event when Jesus comes in the air and calls
away His own from this world. It is the next event on God?s prophetic
"AFTER THIS. " This is better interpreted, "After
these things. " What things? It means after the church age. When Jesus comes
to call us out of this world, the church age ceases, as the church will be
with Jesus. So then we will not be caught out until the church age is
completed. The rapture will mark the end of the church age.
"I LOOKED, AND BEHOLD. " The word "behold " means
"look. " So John said, "Look, " when he saw what God had prepared for us.
John was like a child in a circus as he saw all that was ahead for himself.
"A DOOR WAS OPENED IN HEAVEN. " That door is Jesus
(John 10:9). He is the only door to Heaven. Our job is to tell people to
look to the door that is open to Heaven, or to the Lord Jesus Christ.
"AND THE FIRST VOICE WHICH I HEARD WAS AS IT WERE OF A
TRUMPET. " This proves that this verse speaks of the rapture as it fits in
perfectly with I Thessalonians 4:16 and I Corinthians 15:52. We who are
looking for Jesus are simply awaiting the sound of the trumpet now.
"WHICH SAID, COME UP HITHER. " Here is the even that
we call the rapture. Here the church is caught out of the world and we do
not find the word church mentioned again in Revelation until all has been
fulfilled. Some day Jesus will open up Heaven and say, "Come up hither. "
The time of the Great Tribulation is going to come upon the earth. The Lord
seems to be saying to His own that He does not want them to have to go
through such an hour, so He calls them out of that period.
"AND IMMEDIATELY [in the twinkling of an eye] I WAS IN
THE SPIRIT. " It is the Holy Spirit who will call us out. He alone has the
power to rapture us. Those who do not have Him in their hearts by being born
again will not be caught away at the rapture.
Notice in the remainder of this verse whom we shall see at once. We will see a great throne and Jesus on the throne. He is the first one the real Christian wants to see.
"AND HE THAT SAT WAS TO LOOK UPON LIKE A JASPER AND A
SARDINE STONE. "
Jasper is a symbol of wisdom. Could it mean that it is
wise to be ready for His coming? How foolish for a person to be lost as we
see the time approaching.
Sardine is a symbol of marital happiness. That is
exactly why He is coming. We are going to be married and live with our
"AND THERE WAS A RAINBOW ROUND ABOUT THE THRONE, IN
SIGHT LIKE UNTO AN EMERALD. "
The rainbow is a symbol of Calvary. It is a promise by
God not to judge again that which has already been judged. The rainbow in
Heaven will remind us that we will never have to suffer the sorrow and pains
of this world again. It will be a constant reminder that we are in heavenly
bodies to stay.
Emerald is a symbol of discovering false friends. You can rest assured that all of the false friends of Jesus will be discovered at the rapture. When the saints are gone, those who are left can?t fool anybody any more about their salvation.
"AND ROUND ABOUT THE THRONE WERE FOUR AND TWENTY
SEATS. " The word "seats " is better translated "throne. "
"AND UPON THE SEATS I SAW FOUR AND TWENTY ELDERS. "
These elders represent every New Testament Christian. In Old Testament days
there were 24 priests on duty at a time, but they represented all of the
priests. Hence, these 24 probably represent all of the priests. The Bible
teaches that every New Testament Christian is his own priest, so these 24
represent all of us who are saved. Praise God, all of His children are
"CLOTHED IN WHITE RAIMENT. " We will be wearing white
raiment. You remember in the Garden of Eden God made a coat of skins to
clothe naked man. In order to get a coat of skins, an animal had to die and
shed its blood before the skins could be obtained. So our Lamb of God shed
His blood in order that we might have white raiment picturing our
righteousness before God.
"AND THEY AHD ON THEIR HEADS CROWNS OF GOLD. " God is
going to reward us for our faithfulness, etc., with crowns at the Judgment
Seat of Christ. Crowns for faithfulness, clean living, suffering, soul
winning, and loving the appearing of Jesus are all mentioned in the Bible as
crowns that will be given. How many will you get?
This verse shows the clouds with lightning and
thunder. Above the clouds all may be peaceful when a storm is raging under
them. When we are above the clouds with Jesus at the marriage of the Lamb,
under the clouds shall be a time of Great Tribulation on the earth. Thank
God, those of us who belong to Him shall be above the storm.
Four new creatures are introduced in this verse. They
are called "beasts, " but the best translators call them "living creatures.
" Really they are "full of life creatures. " They constantly are praising
God as you see in verses 7 and 8. Their sole purpose is to sing praises unto
God around the throne.
Notice now what will happen. We hear the creatures
praising God, so we join in the song and sing with the living creatures and
praise our wonderful Saviour.
Note also what else we do. We take off our rewards
that God has given us as crowns and hurl them at Jesus? feet, and say He
alone is worthy to receive them. Perhaps we shall sing,
All hail the power of Jesus? name, Let angels prostate
fall. Bring forth the royal diadem, And crown Him Lord of all.
THE REDEMPTION OF THE PURCHASED POSSESSION
There are those who say that Revelation is not a book
of prophecy, but rather of the history of the church. This theory seems even
more absurd than ever when you study carefully the fifth chapter of this
wonderful Book. No history of the church has ever recorded any such event as
you find in this marvelous chapter.
When one had to forfeit his property because of need,
there were certain conditions when a kinsman could redeem it from the one
who had bought it from his kinsman. When such a deal was made a sealed book
contained the title deed to the property and was held by the purchaser. This
is the book mentioned by the Lord here. It was the title deed to that which
Jesus had redeemed on Calvary that His kinsman, Adam, had lost in the Garden
of Eden. Thank God, Jesus has redeemed us as well as the earth.
Notice it was sealed with seven seals. We are the
purchased possession and the Bible says that we are sealed with seven seals.
We are sealed by the Holy Spirit. Hence, we are secure until the day when
Jesus breaks the seals.
Notice that no man could open the seals and the book
and redeem the earth. Man has tried to do it and thinks he can do it, but
peace will only come on the earth when Jesus comes and opens the seals to
His purchased possession. Leagues of Nations, Security Councils, United
Nations, and all the rest will fail, but Jesus will bring peace when He
John was weeping when he was told that there was One
who could open the book. Jesus had prevailed. "Prevailed " means "conquered.
" Jesus had conquered on Calvary and could open the book.
Notice who it was. It was the Lamb. Jesus is the Lamb
of God. The reason He is pictured as a Lamb here is that it was as a Lamb
that He purchased our redemption.
Also note that He is standing even though He had been
slain. This pictures our risen Lamb. All of the Old Testament lambs died and
that was it, but our Lamb died and got up from death. Praise His name!
Here is one of the greatest days in all time past and
to come, Jesus steps up to receive what He has purchased.
Verses 8, 9, 10:
Notice the pomp of the occasion. At the moment Jesus
received the deed:
The harps start playing.
We all sing redemption?s song.
We shall reign on the earth with Jesus.
In the preceding chapter, we had the acceptance of the
sealed book by the Lamb. Remember that the book is the Title Deed to the
purchased possession bought by Jesus on Calvary. In this chapter we have the
opening of the seals. In this verse, the Lamb (Jesus) starts to open the
Notice the words, "COME AND SEE. " Probably this
should have been simply "Come. "
THE FIRST SEAL IS OPENED and lo, one comes forth on a
white horse. Comparing other Scriptures with this, it undoubtedly speaks of
the coming of the Man of Sin, the Antichrist. The Bible teaches that
immediately after the church is caught out a terrible world dictator will
come who will be Satan incarnate (Satan in a human form). He is the Devil?s
key figure in the Great Tribulation. Read II Thessalonians 2.
You will notice that he comes on a horse. He is
imitating Jesus. Other Scripture passages seem to teach that he comes as a
false messiah. At any rate, he comes as Jesus will eventually come--on a
Verses 3, 4:
THE SECOND SEAL IS OPENED. What is it? It is war.
Remember now that the church has already been taken out and the Antichrist
is revealed. Now comes bloody war.
Verses 5, 6:
THE THIRD SEAL IS OPENED. What is it? It is a famine.
A measure of wheat is approximately one quart. A
"penny " was the normal day?s wage for a laborer. Imagine a day?s wage only
buying a quart of wheat. The depression of the 1920?s and 30?s was nothing
compared to the one that is coming to the world after the church is caught
out. Thank God, I?ll be with Jesus at the marriage of the Lamb.
"SEE THOU HURT NOT THE OIL AND THE WINE. " Oil and
wine in the Bible seem to symbolize luxury. There will be none in that day.
The world shall be cast into a terrible time of hunger.
Verses 7, 8:
THE FOURTH SEAL IS OPENED. What is it? It is death.
"ONE FOURTH PART OF THE EARTH " seems to imply that
one fourth of the people of the earth will be killed. Imagine it. The
world?s population is approximately three billion. One fourth of that would
be 750 million people. Can you imagine that many killed in such a short
period of time?
All of these events will take place after the
Christians are gone.
How foolish for one to be here when he could be with
Jesus by trusting Him as Saviour and Lord.
Verses 9, 10, 11:
The next three verses deal with the souls of martyrs.
The question comes immediately as to what martyrs they are. They could not
be the souls of martyrs who were slain before the rapture because they were
raptured and received their glorified bodies in chapter 4. Hence these must
be the ones who are to be killed for the Gospel during the tribulation up to
this time. In verse 8, one fourth of the world?s population was killed, and
probably many of these were martyrs.
Notice why these are to be killed. "FOR THE WORD OF
GOD, AND FOR THE TESTIMONY WHICH THEY HELD. "
Notice that they are under the altar. Why an altar?
The answer is simple. The brazen altar was the place of sacrifice. Every
person who dies for Jesus gives the supreme sacrifice.
There are several things that are taught here about
souls that should be brought out in this study:
The dead in Christ are still alive.
They can be seen. John said that he saw them.
They are with Jesus.
NOTICE THEIR CRY, "HOW LONG? " They are so anxious to gain their glorified bodies. "Even so, come, Lord Jesus "
THE SINNER?S PRAYER MEETING...Revelation 6:12-17.
HERE WE HAVE THE OPENING OF THE SIXTH SEAL:
"THERE WAS A GREAT EARTHQUAKE. " The word here for
"earthquake " means "quaking in general. " In other words, there shall be
quaking all over the earth. It also means to "shake, toss, or jolt. " It
involves the entire world and planetary system in a time of commotion.
"AND THE SUN BECAME BLACK. " Imagine sleeping until
noon and it still being dark. Imagine it with the sun completely darkened.
Such a day took place in the northeastern section of this country in May,
1780. People were in a state of panic as the day became dark for seemingly
no reason at all.
You can easily imagine this verse transpiring after
reading verse 12. On November 13, 1833, a night like this happened and the
people were scared to death. On that night, for nearly three hours, fiery
balls filled the sky and people were horrified.
You have seen a scroll unroll and roll up. That is
what is meant here.
The reason for the mountains moving is simple. Several
times in California there has been a quake so bad that rivers have dried up
and mountains have been leveled. That is exactly what will take place except
that all the mountains will be moved. Imagine how morbid everything will
NOW LET US LOOK AT THE PRAYER MEETING ITSELF:
Look at the "PRAY-ERS. "
Kings-who thought they were too powerful for Jesus.
Great men- who thought they were too great for God.
Rich men-who thought they were too wealthy for God.
Soldiers-who thought they were too strong for God.
All Christ rejectors.
Look at the object of their prayers: The rocks. They
rejected the Rock of Ages and now they are praying to the rocks.
Now notice their PRAYER: "HIDE US. " They were asking
to be hidden from Jesus, when they could have been hidden in Jesus. And well
they might cry for a hiding place from Jesus, for He will pour out His wrath
THOSE SAVED DURING THE TRIBULATION
There will be some people saved after the rapture of
the saints. Some teacher?s believe that II Thessalonians 2:10-12 teach that
if anyone has heard the plan of salvation and rejected it, they will not
have a chance to be saved after the rapture of the saints. This chapter
deals with the group that will be saved during the Great Tribulation.
THE FOUR WINDS in this verse can be explained by
Ephesians 2:2 and Daniel 7:2. These winds are the wrath that is going to be
unloosed by Satan who is the prince of the power of air.
Verses 2, 3:
Just before the trumpets of judgment are turned loose,
an angel comes from the sun rising and delays them for a while in order for
the servants of God to be sealed.
Once again, God protects His own.
WHO ARE THOSE TO BE SEALED? They are 144,000 Jews, GOD
IS NOT THROUGH WITH HIS CHOSEN RACE, THE JEWS. They are returning every day
to their land. Some are to be there to make a covenant with the Antichrist,
we believe from Daniel 9:27.
HOW WILL THEY GET THE GOSPEL? After the rapture, there
will still be Bibles here, as well as tracts, etc. These will probably be
used by the Lord to reach the House of Israel.
WHAT IS THEIR WORK? Probably they will be the ones who
spread the Gospel to all the world during the tribulation. These 144,000
preachers preach that Jesus is the Messiah.
The meanings of the names of the twelve tribes are
interesting. Notice the following:
Judah................................PRAISERS OF GOD
Reuben.....................LOOKING TO THE SON
Gad......................................A COMPANY (of)
Simeon..................HEARING AND OBEYING
Zabulon...A HOME AND DWELLING PLACE
Benjamin......SONS AT GOD?S RIGHT HAND
Read down the list of meaning and you?ll find the
purpose of these Jews. They are praisers of God looking to the Son, a
company of blessed ones wrestling with forgetfulness, hearing and obeying
and cleaving to a reward of a home and a dwelling place, adding sons at
God?s right hand.
THOSE SAVED DURING THE TRIBULATION: Not only will
there be 144,000 Jews saved during the tribulation, but there will be people
of every nation under the sun. Verses 9-17 deal with these converts.
Verses 9, 10:
Imagine the beauty of this occasion-people from every
nation under the heavens singing together.
Notice that they had palms in their hands. This came
from the Old Testament Feast of the Trumpets when the people, after harvest,
carried palm leaves in their hands and worshipped God in booths as a time of
rejoicing, hence, these saints are rejoicing because of their salvation.
Verses 11, 12:
At such an impressive scene as this, the angels join
in singing in a time of real rejoicing. This is in accord with Luke 15:10.
The angels always rejoice when a soul comes to Jesus.
Verses 13, 14:
Notice that these verses tell who these are who are
saved. They came out of great tribulation. Actually, it should be the Great
PREPARATION FOR THE TRUMPETS
Thus far, we have seen the opening of the six of the
seven seals. The seals contain punishments man shall bring upon himself. The
trumpets begin the judgments God will inflict upon man. The seventh seal
contains the seven trumpets. Sketching it out, it would look like this:
In other words, the seven trumpets are in the seventh
For several chapters now we have been hearing choirs
rejoice. As we come to chapter 8, these choirs suddenly stop. Have you ever
heard a large choir come to an abrupt halt? That is what happens here. The
four living creatures, the hundreds of millions of angels, the saints of all
the ages, suddenly stop their singing. Imagine it!
WHY DOES THE SINGING AND REJOICING STOP? Simply
because the most horrible things that have ever happened are about to happen
as the trumpets are about to sound. The silence is like a breathless gasp in
horror. For about thirty minutes, all of the choirs of Heaven gasp in horror
as they stop the music for a breathless moment of silence.
In the midst of this silence, we see seven angels who
are about to blow seven trumpets. If you will read Numbers 10:1-9 you will
see several things for which trumpets were blown.
For a gathering for a Feast. When Jesus comes to rapture His church, the trumpet will gather us to the wedding feast at the marriage of the Lamb.
For a gathering for War. The same trumpet that gathers us to the Great Feast hurls the remaining people into terrible war. What will the trumpet sound mean to you? War or a Feast?
For the anointing of a King. Jesus is going to come
back to the earth as King of kings to establish His reign of peace for one
thousand years. We shall be His subjects. The sounding of the trumpets mean
that the King is coming soon.
What could the prayers of the saints have to do with
this great event? Simply this: This even has been the heart throb of all
praying saints through the years as they have prayed, "THY KINGDOM COME. "
Far too many pray that prayer and do not realize what they are praying. When
you pray this prayer, you are asking God to hasten the day when Jesus will
reign as King over the earth in His Kingdom. These trumpets are the
beginning of the answer to that prayer.
An interesting thing taught here is that God is
recording the prayers of the saints. This should make us resolve to pray
more than ever. You are making a recording, not on Decca or Columbia, but on
God?s machine as you pray.
Verses 4, 5:
You will remember that the altar was the place of the
substitute, a type of the cross. The fire consumed the substitute, but since
those upon the earth at this time are those who have failed to accept the
Substitute, the angel throws the fire to the earth. Either man accepts the
fire upon the substitution or he must suffer the fires of Hell himself.
"CAST " means to throw or hurl.
Now hear the noise start again. Just as the sudden
stopping of noises was awesome, even shall the sudden lightning and
thundering earthquake be awesome.
The voices in this verse are probably voices of horror
and crying over the soon coming of the awful trumpets.
Now we prepare ourselves to see what could be so
horrible as to cause so much concern. In the next verse we shall see what
the trumpets are and why they caused millions to gasp in horror.
Before us stand seven angels with seven trumpets.
Heaven?s rejoicing has been silenced because of the awfulness that the
blowing of the trumpets was going to bring immediately. The angels are ready
to sound the trumpets. The first one is sounded.
Please note the word, "PREPARED." It means "prepared
by appointment." In other words, God has appointed these things to happen
and they will happen. God?s train runs according to schedule.
The first trumpet brought hail and fire mingled with
blood and burned up the third part of trees and all green grass. Some
teachers symbolize the entire thing. They say the trees are great men, or
teachers or doctors. They say that the grass means people in general. They
say that the earth is the church. Brother, as far as I?m concerned the trees
mean trees, the grass means grass, and the earth means earth.
Others say that all of the hail and fire, etc., are
symbolic and that such as that could not really happen. Well, it has
happened before. The plagues that God sent upon Egypt brought a similar
thing. Read Exodus 9:23, 24. God has said that this would happen again in
Jeremiah 23:7, 8.
Verse 8, 9:
The second trumpet will bring an object that will be
like a great mountain that will be cast into the sea and turn one third of
the sea to blood. Some try to symbolize and say that the mountain is this
thing or another and the blood stand for something and that the sea will
never actually turn to blood.
This also happened before. You will find it recorded
in Exodus 7:19, 20.
I believe that one reason that the word "blood " is
mentioned here is that God is going to constantly remind them that they
could have escaped this awful time had they accepted the blood of Jesus.
Note also that one third part of sea life will die and
one third of the ships will be destroyed. When one ship is destroyed, it
gets headlines and disaster help. Imagine one third of the ships being
Verses 10, 11:
One third of the waters will be like wormwood.
Wormwood is a bitter, intoxicating, poisonous thing. It paralyzes and kills.
Imagine one third of the water supply turned this way. it is the bitterest
herb known to man.
WHY WILL GOD DO THIS? Could it be that it is because
of the bitter gall they gave Jesus to drink on Calvary? The world has always
been bitter towards Jesus. They will receive their deserts.
This brings the blowing of the fourth trumpet that
brings a partial darkness over all the earth.
The word "ANGEL " here should be "eagle. " Now in the
Scriptures many times when God speaks of the rapture. He calls the raptured
saints eagles. Though this is probably a real eagle, it is interesting to
note that God does speak of the saints as eagles. Why?
Eagles are great watchers. They are hard to fool and
are alert. We are to watch all the time for the coming of our King.
Eagles like to go higher than most birds. The farther
they fly from the earth the better they like it. We too should live high and
separated lives from the world.
We are going to mount wings as eagles and fly up to
meet the Lord when He comes at the rapture.
This eagle that comes is warning the earthdwellers of
the three remaining plagues that are to come.
We have seen the first four trumpets and the horrors
that accompanied their blowing, and also the eagle flying through the air
announcing the three WOES as the last three trumpets prepare to blow. Let us
look at the trumpet number five.
The fifth trumpet is sounded. Immediately John saw a
star. "FALLING " is better translated "fallen. " So this star was fallen
from Heaven. Notice that the star is called him, so it must be a
personality. Angelic being are often called stars. Adding all of this
together, we find that this star is an angelic being, fallen from Heaven.
You will note that this creature has the key to the
bottomless pit, or Hell. Have you ever thought of Hell as a bottomless pit?
You fall and fall and fall and fall and never reach the bottom, for there is
If anyone doubted the literal fires of a burning Hell,
this verse should dispel any of those doubts. It is a furnace from which
comes terrible smoke that darkens the earth.
When this person opens the pit, locusts come out. Some
say this could not be. It happened in Exodus and it will happen again. If
these are not literal locusts, then no man could ever tell us what they
In the Reader?s Digest in 1953 there appeared an
article describing the critical problem caused by locusts. Many crops have
been entirely eaten up by the locusts in the East.
The normal food of the locust is green food. However,
God does not let them eat on green food in this time, but rather they shall
feed upon the flesh of men.
What men? Those who have not the seal of God. God
always cares for His own. We shall be with Jesus, and the others who have
been saved in the tribulation will be protected. The locusts will feed only
upon the bodies of the unredeemed.
These will be deadly locusts. They will not kill men,
but they will only torture them for five months. Think of it!
They will sting like a scorpion. Men have foamed at
the mouth and gone into convulsions many times over the sting of one
scorpion. What a horrible time when the entire world does this.
The torment of the locusts will be so great that men
shall try to commit suicide, but cannot. God will not let them die. They may
take poison, but it will not kill them. They may shoot themselves, but
cannot die. They may try to die, but cannot. (No wonder the seeing of this
scene silenced Heaven.)
These verses give a description of these locusts:
THE SHAPE -like that of a horse.
CROWNS ON THEIR HEADS -like gold.
FACES -like that of a man.
HAIR -like that of a woman.
TEETH -like those of a lion.
SOUND -like many horses and chariots preparing for
Notice that this shall last five months. Imagine the
terribleness of this.
Let us thank our God over and over again that we will
not have to endure this awful time. We will till be enjoying the marriage of
the Lamb with Jesus in Heaven.
The sixth angel sounds the sixth trumpet. Let us see
what it contains.
The angels which are bound are no doubt four of
Satan?s angels that have been prepared for this specific time of
Notice also where they have been bound-near the River
Euphrates (the word "in " also means near or around). It is interesting to
note that the place where they have been bound is in the locality of the
place where the Garden of Eden was located. This is where Satan first made
his attack on the human race, where sin first came into the earth, and where
death first came to man.
This verse tells us that these angels are to be used
to slay the third part of men. You will remember that in chapter four, one
fourth of the people have been killed and that leaves three fourths. Now one
third of that three fourths is killed leaving only half of the previous
population of the world. The population of the world now is in excess of two
billion. If it were exactly two billion, that means 500 million would be
killed in chapter four and another 500 million would be killed here in the
sixth trumpet. That would leave only one billion people left.
HOW MUCH TIME SHALL THESE ANGELS USE IN PERFORMING
THEIR JOBS? This verse tells us one year, one month, one day, and one hour.
Think of it!
What will the four angels use to carry out their march
of death? It will be the Devil?s calvary-two hundred million horses from
Hell. We have seen Hell?s locusts. Now we see Hell?s horses. The locusts
tormented for five months. Now the horses kill for over thirteen months.
Verse 17, 18:
Notice that the horses have heads of lions. What a
They have Hell in their mouth. Fire, brimstone
(sulfur), and the smoke that blows out of their mouths is used to kill.
Brother, the smell of burning sulphur is enough to kill, let alone the
They have tails like serpents. In other words, they
have whiplike tails that could lash a person to death.
The tails also had heads of serpents. Probably many shall die from the bite of these serpent tails on the horses. (Think of the horror: People will call the police department, but they cannot be of help. Newspapers will be swamped. Highways will be blocked. People will try to hide in the mountains. There will be one horsemen for every ten people or two families. Imagine your boy, girl, mother, or father being tortured by these hideous monsters. People will die of heart failure. How horrible!)
Let us thank God for the blessed truth that we are
under the blood and safe in Jesus. If you are not His child, you had better
come into the ark of safety while there is yet time.
Verses 20, 21:
A lost person might say, "Well, after all that, if I
am still alive I will call upon the name of the Lord and be saved. " That is
not so. This verse teaches that you will not repent then. Men do not get
saved on their own terms, but on God?s. God?s terms are now.
Note that they will still be worshipping wooden gods,
etc., that cannot see, hear or walk. Thank God, our Saviour is alive. We
have a living God!
Notice the things that men shall do in this period:
Sorceries (fortune-telling, narcotics, etc.).
Fornication (adultery, marriage laxity, etc.).
>From these things, it sounds like we must be near the
time now, doesn?t it?
Remember that we are still in the sixth trumpet
awaiting the blowing of the seventh trumpet. As we begin this chapter, and
angel comes down from Heaven with a proclamation. Let us look at the events
of this great chapter:
Some say that this angel is Jesus (and there are some
good arguments). Others say that it is just another angel. I believe that at
least if this is not Jesus that it is His special angel. You will notice
that the following things will remind you of Jesus:
"CLOTHED WITH A CLOUD. " Jesus is to come in the clouds.
"AND A RAINBOW. " Remember Revelation 4:3, the rainbow about the throne.
"AND HIS FACE WAS AS IT WERE THE SUN. " Revelation 1:16.
Verse 3 speaks of him roaring as a lion. Jesus is the
Lion of the Tribe of Judah.
This could easily be Jesus, for He is spoken of in the
Old Testament as and Angel.
"AND HE HAD IN HIS HAND A LITTLE BOOK. " Read in
Revelation 5:1. No doubt this is the same book mentioned in chapter 5 as the
title deed to the redeemed possession bought by Jesus on Calvary. He has the
deed with Him.
"AND HE SET HIS RIGHT FOOT UPON THE SEA, AND HIS LEFT
FOOT ON THE EARTH. " Notice two facts about this act:
This was the Roman custom of triumph. We are more than conquerers through Jesus. We will win through Jesus.
This also signifies possession. He is taking
possession of the purchased property. It is a sign that Jesus will reign
upon the earth and it shall be under His dominion for one thousand years.
We have had the seven seals. In the seventh seal were
the seven trumpets. Now we have the seven thunders. Let us see them.
1. John says when he saw them, he got ready to write.
2. Suddenly God told John to seal up the seven
thunders and not write them. Perhaps it was too horrible to be written. You
have heard soldiers say that certain battles were too horrible to describe.
Perhaps this is the case here.
3. Please note that this is the only place in
Revelation where God says it cannot be understood. The rest of it is
revealed to us and we can understand its teaching.
1. The angels declares that time (better translated
"delay ") should be no longer. God gives plenty of time, but sooner or
later, He cannot delay any more and time runs out.
2. What a solemn occasion! The end is coming. The
world has about run its course. We should not be too much in love with this
old world for it is going to pass away. It is foolish to try to whitewash
this world that is headed for destruction.
1. We are supposed to feed upon the Word of God and
make this prophecy a part of us. We have no right to neglect it.
2. It was both sweet and bitter. (Read the call of
Ezekiel.) It is sweet to serve Jesus, yet there is bitterness with it. This
world is not a friend of Jesus.
3. There are two sides in the Gospel-the sweet and the
bitter. To those who receive Jesus, it is sweet; to those who refuse it, it
is bitter. Perhaps that is why the Bible is called a two-edged sword in
Let us thank God that our Lord has the title deed to
this earth and that we will someday rule with Him for one thousand glorious
1. You will notice that God speaks of the coming of
two witnesses to prophesy. Bear in mind that the period that we are now
studying is the Great Tribulation, which takes place after the saints have
been called up to meet the Lord in the air. Some think that these witnesses
are the Old and New Testaments, and many other speculations are given.
It seems to me that these men are men who have left
the earth and have come from heaven to witness. One of these men undoubtedly
is Elijah. You recall that Elijah did not die, but that he was caught up to
meet the Lord in the air. The Bible says many times that Elijah is going to
come and preach again. He will be one of the two witnesses.
Well, who is the other one? Who else in the Bible did
not die. Enoch is the answer, so it seems logical that the witnesses are
Elijah and Enoch. A few think they will be Elijah and Moses. At any rate,
these will preach during the Great Tribulation.
2. This verse speaks of the length of their
ministry-1,260 days, which is exactly three and one half years.
For a clear explanation of this verse simply read
Zechariah 4:2, 3.
Notice how these witnesses will be protected. When
people try to hurt them, they spit fire on them and kill them. God always
has a way to care for His own, doesn?t He?
Notice another power that they will have. They can
stop the rain or send plagues on the earth. They can send the plagues of
lice, frogs, hail, etc., that God sent in Moses? day, if they so desire.
many take this verse to prove that one of these men will be Moses, and they
have a strong argument.
After they finish their course, the Antichrist will
come and destroy them, but he will not and cannot until God is through with
Verses 8, 9:
For three and one-half days their bodies will lie in
the street of Jerusalem for the people to view.
When these two witnesses are dead, the people shall
rejoice and even send gifts to each other celebrating the death of these two
The celebration is broken up , however, by the men
coming back to life again right in the middle of the party. "He who laughs
last laughs loudest. "
All of a sudden, the men are caught up in Heaven as
their enemies watched them. So closes a wonderful episode in the events of
Verses 13, 14:
These verses show the response of the people of the
earth when these two witnesses are caught away in the clouds. It says that
they give glory to God. This means very little for two reasons:
They were only giving Him the glory because they were
in trouble. Many people think that they can live a life away from the Lord
and when death comes they can just turn to the Lord and go to Heaven. There
are three reasons why you had better not take that chance.
Jesus may come at any moment, and you would not be ready.
You may die a sudden death and not have any time to repent.
You had better come while the Spirit draws you else He
may not convict you at death.
They were giving glory only to God. The Devil doesn?t
mind you talking about God or the Creator or Deity, but he hates for you to
talk about Jesus.
Two things are taught in this verse:
The kingdoms of this world are headed for doom. We are
not going to build a kingdom ourselves on the earth. All of this talk about
"kingdom building " and "bringing in the kingdom " is unscriptural.
Jesus is going to come and bring His own Kingdom upon
Remember that the four and twenty elders represent all
new Testament priests (all believers). We will reign with Him.
This verse teaches that we shall be a part of a
kingdom that will never die. Stalins die. Hitlers die. Roosevelts die. Our
Lord shall never die.
Four things are spoken of as pertaining to the reign
of our Lord.
It will make the Devil?s crowd man. When God is
working, the Devil?s crowd always gets stirred up.
The lost dead will be judged. This will take place
after the 1,000-year reign (Rev. 20).
Rewards shall be given. Our place in the Kingdom will
be determined by what we have done for Jesus. Some will rule ten cities;
other, one city.
Those that destroy the earth will be destroyed. All of
the liquor dealers, robbers, gamblers, etc., will be destroyed. Won?t it be
wonderful to live in a world ruled by Jesus, in perfect peace, with all of
the earth destroyers gone. Praise the Lord for the hope of the Millennium
when we shall reign with Jesus for one thousand glorious years!
"WONDER " means "signs " or "symbol. " So we see that
this chapter deals largely with symbols. Isn?t it wonderful that when God is
going to speak in symbols He tells us so. Hence we can follow our rule of
taking the Revelation literally unless God tells us otherwise as He does
here in this chapter.
The "WOMAN " mentioned in this verse is Israel. Israel
is often called a woman in the Scriptures. You will also notice that she has
on her head a crown of twelve stars. Probably these stars represent the
twelve tribes of Israel, so the woman is Israel.
God promised Israel a Child to become the Messiah. All
through the years of Jewish history the Jews looked for the coming of that
Child. She was in travail looking for the birth of the promised Child. In
Isaiah 9:6 the prophet says, "Unto us [Israel} a child is born.... "
As soon as the promise of the Child was given there
appeared a dragon to try to destroy the Child. The dragon is Satan. Notice
he is powerful and has crowns and horns upon his head. Horns in the
Scriptures always symbolize kingdoms. So Satan has his kingdoms in this
Notice that the dragon is standing to try to destroy
the Child as soon as the Child is born. You will remember how Herod was used
of the Devil to try to destroy Jesus by killing all of the male infants. God
marveously protected the Child Jesus by sending Joseph into Egypt to stay
until Herod?s death.
The first words of this verse almost fit exactly the
words spoken in the Gospels concerning the birth of Jesus. Israel gave us
our Saviour. We should eternally be grateful to the Jews for the One they
have given to us.
The second truth in this verse is the fact that Jesus
will rule the nations with a rod of iron. This prophesies the one thousand
years that Jesus will rule the earth with the saints.
Another statement, "AND HER CHILD WAS CAUGHT UP UNTO
GOD, AND TO HIS THRONE, " deal with the resurrection and ascension of Jesus
Notice that when the Child was taken into Heaven the
woman fled. The Jews have been scattered ever since Jesus went back into
Heaven to be with the Father.
Notice also in this verse the mention of the 1,260
days again which divides the seven years of tribulation. My, it is wonderful
how God knows what He is talking about, isn?t it?
This war takes place at the end of the first three and
one half years of the tribulation period. The Devil is thrown out of Heaven
with his angels. The reason that the Devil has access to Heaven now is found
in verse 10-he is accusing the saints.
The word "FOUGHT " means "declared war. "
The word "PREVAILED NOT " mean "conquered not. " Satan
will lose this war, will be conquered, and will not accuse us any more.
The word "CAST " means "throw. " He is literally
thrown out of Heaven.
He is thrown into earth.
He is called in this verse the accuser. As previously
stated, his job now is to accuse us before God. He would love to get every
child of God unsaved, but, thank God, he cannot touch a one of us.
You will notice that he accuses us both day and night.
You will notice this verse gives us the only way we
can defeat the Devil in our Christian lives:
We overcome by the blood of the Lamb. The Devil does
not mind when we preach good works, live a good life, or help the poor; but
he hates the blood and those who preach the blood. Our only hope at judgment
will be to plead the blood of Jesus.
The word of our testimony also defeats the Devil. If
he ever gives you any trouble, just give your testimony-he hates that.
Love not your own life. When we love God?s work more
than our own lives, the Devil become defeated in our lives.
As the Devil is thrown out of Heaven, Heaven swells
into a great joyful song. What a happy day when the Devil can no longer
accuse the saints.
Notice the words, "WOE TO THE INHABITERS OF THE EARTH.
" The reason is simple. As the Devil no longer appears in Heaven, he will
put all of his efforts and wicked devices into action on the earth. Hence,
the last three and one half years of the tribulation will be even more
horrible than the first.
The Devil will be more vicious than ever because he is
living his last years as the prince of the power of the air. He is beginning
to sweat because he knows his end is near. A dying animal is the most
vicious animal. The Devil will become more vicious when he is cast out of
Heaven at the beginning of the last half of the seven years of tribulation.
Immediately when he comes to earth he begins to
persecute the Jews. The Devil hates the Jews. They gave us the Bible. They
gave us Jesus. We will dwell in their land in the millennium. Hence, he
hates and persecutes Israel. One of the sure signs of the coming of our Lord
is the growing persecution of God?s race.
These verses show the marvelous protection that God
will give Israel in these days. Just as He protected Noah and his family
through the flood, He will protect His people once again through the
tribulation. God cares for His own. He fights for His people.
Seeing that he could not touch God?s people, he goes
out to make war against the other saved people in the world at that time.
You can rest assured that wherever people love and serve God, the Devil is
going to fight them. The churches that are doing the most for God receive
the most criticism from the Devil?s crowd. Christians who win the most souls
and look for the Lord?s return will be fought at every turn by the Devil.
Thank God, victory is coming when the Devil is defeated.
CONCLUSION: There are four times in the Bible when
Satan is cast out:
He was cast out of his exalted position as an angel in
Heaven before the foundation of the world.
He will be cast out of Heaven as our accuser during
At the beginning of the millennium he will be cast
into the bottomless pit for a thousand years.
Before the great white throne judgment he will be cast
into the lake of fire forever.
We are beginning now the last three and one half years
of the tribulation period. This verse shows the coming in fierceness of the
Antichrist, the final world dictator who will try to rule the world. He is
According to the teaching of Daniel, these ten horns
will be ten kingdoms that will be under this Antichrist.
This man is the Devil incarnate. In other words, he is
to the Devil what Jesus is to God. He is the Devil in a human body. Just as
God has His Trinity, even so, Satan has his trinity. This Beast is the
opposite to Jesus in the Devil?s trinity.
Notice that he gets power over the Devil?s throne.
This word "SEAT " means "throne. " Since the world is the Devil?s throne,
this Antichrist will be on the throne of the world.
He is in the process of taking over now as you will
find in I John 2. Those who deny the Deity of Jesus have the spirit of the
Antichrist now. That spirit is prevalent.
Probably the teaching here is that Rome will have a
king over her kingdom again. There has been no head of the Roman Empire for
centuries. This head will be healed, and this man will be the emperor. Many
think that this man will be Judas resurrected, and they have some pretty
Note that this Beast will be a great religious leader.
In fact, Daniel teaches us that he will pose as the Messiah to the Jews and
shall be accepted as such. Then in the middle of the seven years of
tribulation, he will exalt himself as God. You find this in I Thessalonians
The Scriptures teach also that he will attempt to unite all religious bodies and form a religious federation. The World Council of Churches and the National Council of Churches are playing right into his hands. many of the leaders of the National Council are men who have leaned toward Communism for years. Others do not believe the Bible is the Word of God. Following is a chart of what has happened and will happen in religious circles:
NOTE: The Catholic church split and many denominations
came from her. They are going now into one Protestant body and will very
likely join the old Mother herself one of these days. Then the stage will be
set for the Antichrist to take over.
Let us summarize the studies on the Antichrist before
beginning a new study on the False Prophet:
He is the Devil in a human body.
He is the world dictator who will revive the Roman Empire.
He is the second person of the Devil?s trinity.
He will be revealed just after the rapture of the church.
An interesting study on this Man of Sin is found in Daniel 11. Vs. 21. He will seem to be peaceful and will offer himself as the Messiah to Israel, making promises unlimited. Vs. 23. He will enter into a league of federation with the Jews and break it at the middle of the seven years of tribulation. Vs. 36, 37. He will want to be worshipped as God and will reject the real God.
NOW LET US LOOK AT THE THIRD PERSON OF SATAN?S
TRINITY, THE FALSE PROPHET:
Note that this man comes like a lamb. Read John 1:29.
He is simply imitating Jesus, who is the Lamb of God.
Just as the first Beast was the political head of a federation, this False Prophet is the ecclesiastical head of a church federation. Since the political kingdom is the Roman Empire, it seems likely that this man could be a Pope since he resides in Rome himself. At any rate, this man is the leader of the great World Council of Churches that will be in existence then.
When the church was organized, the pastor was the
highest office. The crave for power came and bishops were appointed over
several churches. Then they chose one bishop to oversee the others and
called him the archbishop. Then they put someone over all of the archbishop.
Then they put someone over all of the churches and called him the Pope.
Here you see also a union of church and state. This
fits in very nicely with the Roman Catholic Church which has always tried to
make theirs the state church.
Notice that this Beast points to the first one and
makes the people worship him. This is proof that he is the opposite of the
Holy Spirit, who points people to Jesus.
Notice that he has supernatural powers. Some people
think that just because a miracle is performed, that proves that it is of
God. That is not so. Satan has power to perform miracles. A good example of
this is fortune-tellers. Do not believe that a movement is of God just
because it has miracles attached to it.
Here is another evidence that this has something to do
with the Catholic Church. Here is an image made of the Beast. God deliver us
from anything that resembles idolatry.
"AND HE HAD POWER " is better translated, "And to him
was given power. " Satan has no power but that which is given to him by God.
God has a governor on him.
Notice that death is the penalty for not worshipping
the Beast?s image. It reminds us of the three Hebrew children in Daniel when
they were cast into the fiery furnace.
This image will be the image of the federation of
churches. When the Federal Council of Churches are in control you almost
have to bow down now. God keep us fighting the World Council, National
Verses 16, 17:
This certainly sounds like Communism, doesn?t it?
The mark of the Beast is 666. Seven is God?s number.
Six is man?s number. Six is the best the Devil can do. Each one of these
sixes represents one of the Devil?s trinity.
"A LAMB " should be "the Lamb. "
You will remember that the 144,000 were spoken of in
chapter seven. They are twelve thousand from each of the twelve tribes of
Israel who are going to preach the Gospel of Jesus during the tribulation.
Here we find them mentioned again. This chapter shows them at the end of the
tribulation as they are rewarded for their works.
Even though the world is to be at its worst period in
history, there will still be 144,000 who are true to the Lord. Always there
is a remnant for Jesus. Even in these dark hours, there are some who love
the Lord and His work and preach the truth. Let us thank God for those who
stand for the truth and hold them high in prayer.
Notice that they wear the name of God on their heads. The translation should be, "HIS NAME AND HIS FATHER?S. " In other words, they will wear Jesus? name and the Father?s name on their foreheads. They are not ashamed. God help us to wear His name so men might know that we are His.
These will have a new name. When a woman marries, she
adopts the name of her husband. So it is with us. When we see Jesus we will
wear His name.
Notice that John said that he heard the voice of
harpers; Heaven?s harps will play for these who have been faithful.
These 144,000 will sing a new song together. What a
choir that will be! They will not be able to sing the old songs because they
all pertained to events that will already have happened at that time. For
example, they cannot sing, "When the Roll Is Called Up Yonder, " because the
roll will have already been called when this happens.
Verses 4, 5:
Several things that should be noted about these are:
They are chaste. The word "VIRGIN " means "chaste " or "pure. "
They follow the Lamb wherever He goes. This is exactly what every Christian should do. Many say that they take Jesus with them wherever they go. You cannot do this unless you follow Him wherever He goes. Our job is to follow Jesus and not to take Him anywhere. The most wonderful place in the world is to be in the center of the will of God.
Their mouths were pure. How wonderful to see a person who sins not with him mouth.
They are without fault before God. This means
blameless. God saw them as blameless in His sight.
Some say that this is one of several different
gospels. I believe that there is only one Gospel and that the only one is
salvation by grace through faith.
Notice the words, "LOUD VOICE, " repeated over and
over again, denoting the urgency of the occasion.
Notice the words, "THE HOUR OF HIS JUDGMENT IS COME. "
God?s judgment has come before, and yet this is the greatest hour of
judgment when God?s wrath is completely poured out upon the earth. What we
are about to see is God?s wrath without any mercy.
This verse no doubt points to chapters 17 and 18 when
political and ecclesiastical Babylon shall be destroyed. Notice, "FALLEN, "
mentioned twice, means that both Babylons shall fall.
Now comes the punishment upon the unbelievers who have
worshiped the Beast. Notice the different statements about the punishment.
It is without mixture. This means it is unmixed. It is
pure wrath not mixed with mercy, love or grace. It is God?s power given
completely in anger.
"THE CUP OF HIS INDIGNATION " means the cup of His
anger. God has been holding His anger in check, but at this final day God
will be an angry God with no mercy upon the unbeliever.
They will be tormented with fire and brimstone (sulphur).
There is no fire as painful, nauseating, and hot as burning sulphur or
Notice in whose presence the punishment will be-in the
presence of the holy angels and the Son of God. What humiliation!
The punishment of the unbeliever will last forever.
Hell is eternal fire punishing Christ-rejecters forever and ever. Verse 11.
The unbelievers will have no rest again. This means no
relief from suffering. There will be no anesthetic to deaden the pain.
Verse 12, 13:
You will notice in verse 13 that at this time in the
latter days of the tribulation period even the Christians will be better off
if they die. The reasons are:
They can rest from their labors. (This is in direct contrast to verse 11 prohibiting rest.)
Their works do follow them, and they shall be rewarded for their labors for God.
"THE BATTLE OF ARMAGEDDON "
The following verses deal with the coming Battle of
Armageddon. This battle gets its name from Revelation 16:16. A study of this
is in order because of the widespread ignorance about the battle. Some
thought World War I might be Armageddon; still others thought World War II
might be it; others were concerned about the Korean War. Let us note several
things concerning this battle:
It is a literal battle.
It is not a battle between nations.
It cannot be fought as long as we Christians are here.
It will happen after the rapture.
It is between Jesus and the Antichrist and his forces.
It closes the seven years of tribulation.
It ushers in the millennium.
The word "CLOUD " means "a special, prepared cloud. "
Acts 1:11 says Jesus will come again as He went away. He went away in the
clouds. He will come again in the clouds.
The Son of Man spoken of in this verse is undoubtedly
You will notice that He has a golden crown upon His
He left this world with a crown of thorns as the
suffering Saviour...He will return with a golden crown as the conquering
The word "THRUST " means "to throw. "
Notice that this sickle is to be thrust in the earth
in order to reap the harvest. The only harvest one can reap is the product
of that which has been sown. Galatians 6:7 certainly proves this; hence, the
earth will reap what she has sown. For two thousand years she has sown sin
and rebellion against God; therefore, she will reap the wrath of God.
"RIPE " means "rotten. " That will be the condition of
the world. Once again we find that this world is not going to get better;
rather, at the time of reaping it will be rotten.
This is a climactic verse. It is the thrusting in of
God?s sickle of judgment. The word "ON " means "against. " God?s judgment is
going to be against this earth.
Verses 17, 18:
Here we find another sickle and another thrusting.
This one is not the harvest of the earth, but the harvest of the vine of the
earth. Just as Christ is the True Vine, the Antichrist is the vine of the
earth. Just as we Christians are on the True Vine, even so, unbelievers will
be on the false vine (Antichrist). In verse 18 it says that her grapes are
The grapes on the vine will be cast into the great
winepress. A winepress is a big trough or vat for the treading and smashing
of grapes in order for the juice to be made into wine. The wicked shall be
put in God?s winepress and trampled upon.
When the wicked have been trampled upon in God?s
winepress, this verse says the blood will come out and form a river two
hundred miles long, that will come up to the horses? bridles. Men scoff at
such a prophesy. Let us be reminded that when Titus destroyed Jerusalem,
Josephus tells us that the blood ran along the streets and into the houses,
even putting out some of the fires!
When Cylla destroyed Athens, the blood was in the
streets and yards and ran through the gates like a river. Let us thank God
that through the shedding of the blood of His Son, we will avoid this
terrible shedding of man?s blood.
INTRODUCTION: In order that we might understand better
the preparation for the Battle of Armageddon, we need to understand the par
Russia is going to play in the end-time. To understand this, turn to Ezekiel
chapters 38 and 39. Some say this has already been fulfilled; however, since
chapter 37 deals with the final millennium, chapters 38 and 39 must take
place between two preceding events. The only period between these two events
is the seven years tribulation. That these chapters could be fulfilled soon
is proved by the recent recognition of Israel as a State and their
acceptance into the United Nations. Let us look at these two chapters:
EZEKIEL 38:1, 2:
"GOG " means the "chief prince of Rosh. " The word
"Rosh " is the root word for Russia.
"MAGOG " means the "land of the prince " (the word "Gog
" meaning "prince, " and the word "Ma " meaning "land "). Historians say
that this land is located around the Black Sea. All of us know that this is
the location of Russia.
The words "MESHECH " and "TUBAL " represent tribes which settled in the vicinity of Magog. They settled in the places now known as the Russian cities of Moscow and Tobolsk.
This verse teaches that when Russia does attack
Palestine she will come (1) Like a storm (Russia is now planning a standing
army of sixty million men), and (2) Like a cloud. Perhaps this refers to
Russia?s tremendous emphasis on paratroopers. On September 16, 1935, the
Russian papers told of a Russian paratrooper experiment that "obscured the
sky like a cloud. " Little did they know that they were quoting Scripture.
Contrary to the past, the new villages in Palestine
are all unwalled as the Scripture predicts.
EZEKIEL 38:12, 13:
These verses show why Russia will come into
Palestine-to get riches. There is more wealth in the bottom of the Dead Sea
than in all of the United States of America. There are chemicals worth one
and one fourth trillion dollars in the Dead Sea. Russia wants that wealth.
You will notice that one of the main arms of Russia?s
army will be a calvary. Many people say this proves the fallacy of this
Scripture. Notice two things:
Russia has been buying up the world?s horses for
years, and now owns almost three-fourths of all the horses in the world.
For years Russia has been breeding a new super-horse.
EZEKIEL 38: 5, 6:
Notice the allies who will come with Russia:
PERSIA-In 1936 Russia and Persia signed a treaty
strengthening their friendship. Persia is now called Iran, and is now
antagonistic toward the British and the Americans. Several years ago Iran
asked the American troops to leave the country. The reason that Russia will
ally with Iran is that one-fourth of the world?s oil is in this little
ETHIOPIA-Some say this is ancient Ethiopia and perhaps
this is true. However, it is interesting to notice that the little country
of Ethiopia is extremely friendly with Russia and has been since the
Italian-Ethiopian War in the late 1930?s.
LYBIA-This is located in the general vicinity of Egypt
that has been a hotbed of international strife for the last decade.
GOMER-Gomer was the originator of a tribe named after
Japheth?s son, which migrated into what became Eastern Germany and Poland.
Russia has both today. So you can see the division of Germany was not news
TOGARMAH-This was a tribe which settled in Armenia.
Armenia is now Turkey. Russia has always wanted Turkey and will have her
>From Turkey to Haifa to Megiddo (the valley of the
Battle of Armageddon) is a straight run.
As Russia comes on Palestine the fury of God will be
He will send an earthquake.
He will defeat Russia.
Five-sixths of Russia will be destroyed.
It will take seven months for Israel to bury all the
CONCLUSION: Jesus wins the victory at Armageddon. The
nations of this earth are overturned. The Battle of Armageddon is over, and
the Millennium is begun. Praise God, He will be the Victor.
DANIEL 2-THE TIMES OF THE GENTILES
INTRODUCTION: In order to understand the true
significance of the Battle of Armageddon we must understand the second
chapter of Daniel. Nebuchadnezzar was the king of the world empire of
Babylon. He is the chief character of this chapter.
Nebuchadnezzar was lying upon his bed thinking about
what would come to pass after his death. He was interested in the future!
Would to God that all Christians were interested in the future. If one is
willing to pay the price in Bible study, he will find that the course of
events is outlined completely in the Word of God. It is a sin for a
Christian not to know prophecy.
While laying on his bed Nebuchadnezzar saw an image
described in these verses. Daniel revealed to him the image, and in verse 36
prepares to give the interpretation of the image. The image had a head of
fine gold, breast and arms of silver, belly and thighs of brass, legs of
iron, and feet of iron and clay.
Verses 37, 38:
In these verses we find that Babylon, the world
empire, was the head of gold. In following verses we will find that this
image represents the entire Gentile dominion over the world. All of the
Gentile kingdoms that will ever rule the world are mentioned in this image.
This verse teaches that another world kingdom will
conquer Babylon. This kingdom is mentioned in Daniel 5:31 as the Median
Kingdom, which united with Persia and ruled the world. Still another kingdom
is mentioned in this verse that would conquer the Median-Persian Kingdom and
rule the world. This was fulfilled when Alexander the Great conquered the
world for Greece.
Another kingdom was to conquer Greece. History tells
us that Rome conquered Greece and was the next world empire. You will recall
when Jesus was born-all the world was taxed by the Roman Empire.
Another interesting fact is that we are down to the
legs of the image, denoting the split in the Roman Empire that took place
four or five hundred years after the birth of Christ.
This is the only part of the image that has not yet
been fulfilled. No kingdom has conquered the world since Rome. This chapter
and other chapters of the Bible (Daniel 7) teach that these toes represent
ten kingdoms that will form a revised Roman Empire. This has not happened
yet, but is in the making. It will be simply a United States of Europe and
will be headed, according to Daniel 7, by the Antichrist himself. When this
federation is complete, and the religious federation previously studied
about in Revelation 13 is complete, the stage will be set for the Battle of
Verses 44, 45:
The vision showed a stone smiting the image and
becoming a great mountain, filling the whole earth. Verse 44 shows that this
stone is the kingdom that will break down the kingdoms of this world and
will cover the whole earth. This is the millennium.
This kingdom shall never be destroyed.
It is set up by the God of Heaven.
It will consume all other kingdoms.
It shall stand forever.
It will not be a man-made kingdom. It is cut out
"without hands. "
The King will be Jesus, the Stone rejected by the builders, the Rock of Ages.
CONCLUSION: Per chance there be some who would doubt
the authenticity of this interpretation, God has an answer for this verse
45b- "The dream is certain, and the interpretation thereof sure. "
Chapter 15 and 16
INTRODUCTION: These two chapters should be one, so we
are going to treat them as such.
The words "FILLED UP " mean "completed. " In other
words, God?s wrath will be completed with these seven last plagues found in
chapter 16. As horrible as the previous plagues have been, they cannot
compare to these last seven plagues which complete the wrath of God.
These verses are stated parenthetically, showing the
joys of God?s people at the sight of the completion of God?s wrath and the
nearness of the coming Kingdom.
A door opens to the Temple in Heaven.
Seven angels having seven last plagues come out of the
One of the four beasts (living creatures) gives to
each angel a vial from which to pour the seven last plagues.
Revelation 16, Verse 1:
"VIALS " means "bowls, " implying that God?s wrath is
going to be poured out on the earth, with no mercy whatsoever. Let us look
at these seven plagues.
PLAGUE 1- "NOISOME " means "terribly destructive. "
The word "SORE " means "boils or ulcers. " Imagine running boils and bloody
ulcers upon the men who worship the Beast. Some say this cannot happen and
cannot be literal. Proof that this can happen is that it did happen to the
Egyptians in the Book of Exodus.
PLAGUE 2-The second plague is the death of every
living soul in the sea. Imagine the dead carcasses of all of the fish, etc.,
in the sea floating on top of the water. In the second trumpet mentioned in
chapter 8 one-third of the life in the sea died. Now all of it dies. Imagine
the diseases that could come from such a catastrophe.
PLAGUE 3-In this plague all water becomes blood. Verse
6 tells the reason. They have shed the blood of God?s people and refused the
blood of God?s Son, so they are reaping what they have sown. The word
"worthy " in verse 6 means "deserving. "
The question arises immediately- "How could a
righteous God do such a thing? " This verse explains that a righteous God
must do such things. Justice and righteousness demand punishment for sin.
That is what God is giving in these plagues.
PLAGUE 4-This plague gives power for the sun to scorch
men with great heat. Many will die with heat strokes, many will burn to
People often say that when these days come, then they
will repent. This verse says they will not repent. Repentance can only come
by conviction of the Holy Spirit, and He will not convict those who have
continually rebelled against Him when this day comes. They will curse God
and repent not. That is exactly what is happening today.
PLAGUE 5-This plague is darkness and the kingdom of
the beast. This darkness will be so great that the men of the earth will
chew their tongues for pain. Will this cause them to repent? They will curse
God more and repent not.
PLAGUE 6-This is a very interesting verse. You will
notice that the Euphrates River is going to be dried up in order that the
kings of the East might cross it and have a way to Palestine. "East " means
"sun-rising. " The land of the rising sun is Japan and the East (China,
This verse definitely teaches, along with other verses
in the bible, that the kings from the East will also march on Israel. In our
two previous studies we have found that the Battle of Armageddon will see
the armies from the North (Russia, Turkey, etc.) invading Israel and the
armies from the West (the revived Roman Empire, or the United States of
Europe) invading Israel.
Now then, we find that the countries from the East
will invade Israel, but something hinders them. The Euphrates River has long
been a dividing force and a natural protection for countries east and west
of it, so God will simply dry up this river to let the kings of the
sun-rising march through. If that sounds foolish to you, you may study the
history of Israel as God dried up the Red Sea and the River Jordan. The
Euphrates River is 1,800 miles long, 300-1,200 yards wide, and 20 to 60 feet
deep. God will dry it up to make ready for the great Battle of Armageddon.
SUMMARY THUS FAR: In our study of the Revelation we
are now prepared for the Battle of Armageddon. We have studied how that
Russia and her allies will come from the north, the revived Roman Empire
under the Antichrist will come from the west, and China, Japan etc., will
come from the eat upon the land of Palestine. Now, let us notice some
concluding things about this battle.
The word "SPIRITS " means "demons. " These demons come
out of the mouth of the Devil?s trinity.
You will notice the dragon, the beast, and the false
prophet, which compose the Devil?s trinity. The dragon is the opposite to
God the Father, the beast (Antichrist) to God the Son, and the false prophet
to God the Holy Spirit.
You will notice that the spirits are like frogs,
denoting that these three personalities, like a frog, come from quagmire and
dark, evil places.
1. These demons will enable the Devil?s trinity to
work miracles. Satan, you know, does have the power to perform miracles.
2. These miracles will be used to deceive the nations
in order to gather them together for the Battle of Armageddon.
This verse tells the place where they will be
gathered. They will be marching upon Armageddon, which means the "Mount of
Slaughter. " Little does Russia realize today that as she plans her
conquest, she is simply a tool in God?s hand to meet the appointment that
she has with Christ at Armageddon. Little does Western Europe and the
countries of the East realize that they are only preparing now for the
appointment with Jesus at Armageddon.
We are placing verse 15 after verse 16 because we
believe that it has an entirely different thought. It is inserted to warn us
who read that Jesus will come as a thief.
A "THIEF " comes to steal and carry something away.
Jesus is coming to carry us away.
The word "BLESSED " means "happy. " Happy is he who
watches for the Lord?s return.
Those who are not ready will be exposed shamefully as
naked, because they have not been covered by the blood of Jesus.
Verses 17, 18:
PLAGUE 7-The word "INTO " means "upon. " Hence, this
vial is poured out upon the air.
This plague concludes God?s judgment upon the earth.
Notice the words, "It is done, "-the same words that Christ uttered on the
When this vial is poured out upon the earth it caused
thunders, lightnings, and earthquakes worse than have ever been in history.
This verse explains the fall of Babylon which we will
discuss in chapters 17 and 18. This verse summarizes the events of
Revelation 17 and 18.
The earthquakes will be so bad that islands shall be
moved, valleys shall become mountains, and mountains shall become valleys.
The whole form of the earth will be changed. This fits in perfectly with
Zechariah 14, which tells of the Mount of Olives being torn in two pieces at
the final day of our Lord.
To conclude the plagues, great hail falls out of the
Heaven. Every hailstone weighs a talent. (A talent is over approximately 114
lbs.) Imagine hailstones weighing over 100 pounds each. In Constantinople in
1831, the report came that hailstones the size of a man?s shoe fell killing
animals and people, splintering houses, and causing havoc in general. These
hailstones weighed around two pounds. Imagine the destruction of hailstones
weighing fifty times that much.
INTRODUCTION: We have read several times thus far
about the coming destruction of Babylon. Chapter 17 is that destruction. We
will find that the Babylon mentioned in chapter 17 represents all forms of
A bad woman in the Bible is invariably a symbol of
false religion. This woman is the anti-bride of Christ. Those who claim
salvation in a man-made religion compose this harlot, the anti-bride. She is
called a whore because she is guilty of spiritual adultery.
The word "WHORE" in this verse means harlot or
prostitute. It is associated with the selling of one?s purity. Two things
could be implied-first, those who teach salvation by works, and second,
those who charge for spiritual service.
You will notice she is sitting on many waters. Verse
15 explains that these waters are nations and peoples and tongues. In other
words, she is universal. Whoever she is, she covers the earth.
There is nothing better than a good woman, and nothing
worse than a bad woman. Applied spiritually, there is nothing better than
being a part of the bride of Christ, but there is nothing worse than being
of a false religion.
She is guilty of fornication with the kings of the
earth. This religion, hence, is a state of religion, not believing in
separation of church and state. Do you know of any religion today who would
love for their school children to ride on state school buses, and who has an
ambassador to their headquarters, and who, when in power in a country, has
always tried to control the government?
You will notice that this religion is a religion of
loose morals. Need I say more?
This woman is sitting on a Beast. You will find the
explanation of this Beast in Revelation 13:1. It is the Antichrist and the
revived Roman Empire. You will remember that there was to come one following
the Antichrist and pointing to him called the false prophet. Could it be
that the false prophet is the leader of this religion which rides on the
This woman is wealthy. This religion can afford purple and scarlet, gold, precious stones, and pearls. Hence, she can have the prettiest building, more elaborate furnishings, etc. She reminds us of the church at Laodicea.
Dear friends, you can search the Bible and find
invariably that God?s people are simple, humble people who do not have,
usually, much of this world?s goods.
There is a cup in her hand. Even though outwardly she
is beautiful, this cup is full of abomination and filthiness. This religion
is an abomination in the sight of the Lord.
Let us see her name. First, it was called "BABYLON THE
GREAT." Babylon has, since Genesis 11, been a symbol of the world?s false
religions. "BABYLON" means "confusion." In Genesis 10 and 11 Nimrod led in
the building of a tower and a city in order to unify a false religion. It
was called the Tower of Babel. From that day until this God has associated
false religion with the terms Babylon or Babel. Even today the National
Council of Churches, the Federal Council of Churches, and the World Council
of Churches are trying to build a Tower of Babel. Four things about the
Tower of Babel.
It was a man-made religion.
It was made of a false unity.
It had an earthly city as its center.
It had an earthly representative from Heaven. In other
words, one man was over it.
The MOTHER OF HARLOTS-The Roman Catholic Church is the
mother of most great denominations. A child is one who comes from the body
of its mother. Most of the great denominations came out of the body of Roman
Catholicism. A child usually favors its mother; hence, the children of
Catholicism, even thought they are the lady herself...such as sprinkling,
having centralized denominational leaders, baptizing babies, etc. These all
came from Roman Catholicism.
There was a day when the two great bodies were
Catholics and the true believers. many children have come out from their
mother, making other groups, and are now in the process, it seems, of
returning to their mother. Hence, someday there will simply be, once again,
the federation all in one body (Babylon) and Bible believers.
You will notice that this religion is also guilty of
murder-cold-blooded murder. She kills the saints. Through the centuries
Roman Catholicism has been killing true believers when she could get by with
it. First, she takes over a state or government. Then she forces herself as
the state religion and persecutes others.
The "BEAST" in this verse is the "Antichrist"
mentioned in Revelation 13. You will notice that he was and is not, and yet
shall be. Consequently, the Antichrist must be one who has lived, but was
dead at John?s time, but would be resurrected later on.
You will notice that some were not written in the book
of life from the foundation of the world. This would indicate that some have
been in the book of life before the foundation of the world. What a blessing
to think that before the world?s foundation was laid, our names were written
in God?s book.
Some would say that ecclesiastical Babylon in this
chapter has nothing to do with the religion of Rome. You will notice,
however, that the seven heads represent seven mountains on which the woman
sits. Bear in mind that a bad woman is a sign of false religion. Hence, this
false religion sits on a city of seven mountains. The City of Rome has long
been known as the City of Seven Hills. Some say these represent the seven
kingdoms which the seven kings in verse 10 rule.
There are seven kings.
Five are already fallen.
One was living in John?s time.
Another was to come after John?s time.
The Beast in verse 11 is the same Antichrist mentioned
in verse 8.
You will notice that he WAS, meaning that he had
You will notice that he IS NOT, meaning that he did
not live in John?s time.
He is the eighth king.
He is OF THE SEVEN, meaning that he is one of the
previous seven kings, leading us to believe that the Antichrist is one of
the historical kings resurrected again.
The ten horns on the beast represent ten kingdoms.
These kingdoms are composing the revived Roman Empire and parallel the
teachings of Daniel, chapters 2 and 7.
These kings will make war with the Lamb-the Lamb being
The Lamb will win the war because He is the King of
kings. Thank God, we are on the winning side.
You will notice that some are with Him, that is, with
the Lamb. Those are the believers. When Jesus returns to the earth, He will
conquer the Antichrist and his armies and set up a Kingdom of Righteousness,
and we will be with Him as He comes.
An interesting thing happens here. You will remember
that the false religion was riding on the Antichrist in verse 3. In this
verse the Antichrist and his ten kings turn upon the Mother of Harlots, hate
her, and destroy her. Here is the destruction of false religion.
Hence, the Antichrist will run his course only until
God?s words be fulfilled. In other words, the kingdoms of this world today
are only fitting into God?s master plan. Rulers, nations, congresses and
peace pacts do not change the course of human history. They only fit into
God?s plan for the world.
Chapter 18 deals with the destruction of political
Babylon. Remember that political Babylon is the union of nations of the
earth under the Antichrist to march on Palestine. Also remember that
religious Babylon, which is a union of the religions of the world, was
destroyed in Chapter 17 by political Babylon.
You will notice that Babylon had become the habitation
of devils, and the hold of foul spirits and unclean things. Let shoe who say
the world is going to get better and better read these verses. This world
system is going to get more corrupt until the coming of our Lord.
Verses 4, 5:
Notice God?s command to His people to come out of
Babylon. This means that we are to come out of the world and be separate.
Also, we are to come out of churches that are worldly and teach false
Verses 9, 10:
Politicians shall weep with the fall of political
Babylon. They have invested their lives in politics and government, and now
Babylon is destroyed.
Businessmen shall weep over Babylon. Those who have
wrapped their lives around business will find their business gone. Stores
will close. Business will fail in this great hour.
Commerce and travel shall fail.
Pleasure and amusement shall cease. In other words,
Jesus will destroy the political unions of this world and establish a rule
of righteousness. Let those beware who invest their lives in this world. A
life invested in this world shall be wasted. A life invested in Jesus will
some day rule this world.
"THE MARRIAGE OF THE LAMB"
The scene is in Heaven after the destruction of
political and ecclesiastical Babylon. Heaven is rejoicing in verse 1 because
of the destruction of the great whore symbolizing all false religion.
Imagine the joy of the redeemed when all religions contrary to the Bible are
The first reason that they rejoiced was that the false
religions had corrupted the earth and could do so no more.
The second reason is that the blood of the martyred
saints has been avenged.
Notice the continued rejoicing. Also notice the number
of times Alleluia is mentioned in these few verses.
Verses 4, 5:
Notice who does the rejoicing. First, the four and
twenty elders who represent all those who have been redeemed. In other
words, we shall rejoice after the battle has been won. A small idea of the
great rejoicing was found when World War II was over. You perhaps remember
the great rejoicing on the city streets when the war was over.
Also rejoicing are the four beasts, or living
creatures. We will join in with the living creatures and say "Amen" and
"Alleluia." Also a voice will come out of the throne shouting, "Praise God."
The multitudes join in the shouting.
For the fourth time the word "ALLELUIA" is used.
Our Lord is called "OMNIPOTENT," which means He is
all-powerful. Even the united forces of the kings of this world could not
Notice that He reigneth. He is going to be King over
the whole world.
Notice the words, "LET US BE GLAD AND REJOICE." A
wedding is a time of rejoicing. certainly there shall be tears of joy also.
You will notice who is going to marry. The Bridegroom
will be the Lamb, the bride will be His wife, or all the redeemed. Some seem
to think that just one denomination will be the bride. This is not
consistent with the teaching of the Bible. We are all members of His body
and will be one with Him as His bride. Many have even gone so far as to say
that only Baptists will be the bride. This is not so. Every saved Baptist,
Presbyterian, Methodist, every saved Church of Christ, every saved Catholic,
and those saved from every other denomination or no denomination will be a
part of the bride.
Notice that the bride has made herself ready. She has prepared herself for the wedding. Two things a bride does in preparation.
First, she accepts the invitation of the bridegroom.
Second, she makes herself as lovely as she can for the
"GRANTED" in this verse means "given," picturing again
that salvation and all that accompanies it is by the grace of God.
You will notice the wedding gown of the bride. We will
be arrayed in fine linen.
The word, "RIGHTEOUSNESS," means "righteous acts." The
fine linen, according to this verse, is the righteous acts of the saints. In
other words your wedding gown at the marriage of the Lamb will be made of
the good things that you have done for God here. I fear many people will
have a pretty skimpy wedding gown.
The word "BLESSED" in this verse means "happy and
contented." The happy people in this world are those who are going to be at
the marriage of the Lamb.
You will notice that John says that these are the true
sayings of God. Many try to disprove the literalness of the Book of
Revelation. John says here that these are the true sayings, meaning they are
the literal sayings of God.
Let us summarize briefly the marriage of the Lamb:
The false suitors are eliminated-19:2.
The place of the wedding is Heaven-19:1.
Every formal wedding is characterized by the wedding music-19:1, 4-6.
Every marriage must have a bridegroom. Jesus is the Bridegroom-19:7.
Then we must have the bride-19:7b. The bride in this wedding is composed of all the saints.
After each wedding there is a reception. This is found in verse 9 in the marriage supper.
After the reception the bride and groom go on a honeymoon. The honeymoon is found in Revelation 20:6. We shall have a thousand years of honeymoon on earth with Jesus.
After the honeymoon, the bridegroom takes the bride to their home. Read Revelation 21:2. Jesus will take us to the place He has prepared.
...And they lived happily ever after.
John was so carried away with what the angel showed
him that he fell at the angel?s feet to worship him. Immediately the angel
rebuked John explaining that Jesus alone was worthy of worship.
Notice the last few words in this verse. We find that
the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy. In other words, prophecy
is what Jesus loves to testify about. Many so-called Christians make fun of
prophetic preaching and prophetic study. From this verse, however, we find
that if we are to be like Jesus, prophecy must be close to our hearts.
THE SECOND COMING OF JESUS TO THE EARTH
Many times we call the rapture of the church the
second coming of Jesus. That is not so. The second coming of Jesus to earth
will take place after the seven years of tribulation on earth and the
marriage supper in Heaven. Verses 11-16 deal with the true second coming of
Jesus to the earth.
He comes on a white horse. He presented Himself in
Jerusalem on a white colt. The next time He comes to Jerusalem He will come
on a horse.
He is called "FAITHFUL" and "TRUE." The most wonderful
thing about Jesus is that He is faithful...meaning that you can count on Him
to come and to be on time. The greatest thing that can be said about a
Christian is that he is faithful.
Notice the words, "MAKE WAR." The modernist says that
God is not a God of war. Here it says that the purpose of His coming is
partially to make war.
He has many crowns on His head. The word "CROWNS"
means "diadems." In history many kings after conquering many countries wore
the crown of each country. The reason Jesus will have many crowns is that He
will be King of every nation of the earth.
He had another name that we do not know of. Here is
something in Revelation that we cannot understand. God is always faithful to
tell us what He does not want us to understand. When He does not make such
instructions, we are accountable to learn.
His clothing is dipped in blood, not in His blood, but
the blood of those that He conquers.
He is called the Word of God. This proves that this is
Jesus. John 1:1.
Notice that someone is following Jesus. To distinguish
who these armies are is simple. As it says, they are clothed in fine linen.
In verse 8 we have already found that the bride is clothed in fine linen.
Hence, we will come back with Him.
We will be on white horses also. If one would doubt
these horses to be literal, he might remember that Elijah was carried into
Heaven by a horse and chariot.
The sharp sword coming out of His mouth is the Word.
He will simply speak and smite the nations.
He will rule the nations.
He will tread the winepress of the people of the
earth. A winepress is the making of juice by trampling of the fruit under
the feet. Hence, Jesus is going to trample this earth until the blood will
be to the horses? bridles, according to Revelation 14:20.
Written on His clothing will be "KING OF KINGS, AND
LORD OF LORDS." On the cross His enemies wrote Him a title of mockery. At
His return He will be King of kings, and Lord of lords!
"THE GREAT SUPPER OF GOD"
Chapter 19 is a chapter of suppers. There are two
suppers mentioned. You may take your choice of the one you want to attend.
The first is the Marriage Supper of the Lamb discussed earlier. The second
is the Great Supper of God discussed in Revelation 19:17-21.
The angel announces the supper.
Those that eat are the fowls that fly in the air.
In this verse these fowls are summoned to the great
In this verse we have the menu for the supper. Kings
who forget God, military leaders and mighty men, and all those who forget
God are on the menu for this supper. Those who attend the marriage supper of
the Lamb will eat. Those who attend this great supper of God will be eaten.
Here is the closing battle of the age, the Battle of
Armageddon. The Antichrist and the kings march against God.
Here is the result of the battle. The Antichrist and
the false prophet will be taken and cast into the lake of fire.
The armies of the Antichrist and false prophet, after
their leaders have been cast into the lake of fire, will be killed at the
coming of Jesus.
Their bodies shall lie in the Valley of Megiddo.
Then the fowls will come to supper. They will eat the
dead carcasses of those killed in this battle. In other words, just as you
see the buzzard on the highway carrying off a dead carcass of an animal,
even so will the ungodly be eaten by the fowls in the air. This is the great
supper of God.
In our last study we came back with Jesus to the
earth. Now, in chapter 20 we are going to help Him establish a kingdom upon
the earth that will last one thousand years.
In order to have this kingdom, an angel comes and
binds the Devil with a chain. Some make light of this fact, but that does
not change it. The Devil will be bound by a chain for one thousand years.
This will be during the millennium. The idea that Satan is bound no wise
ridiculous and unscriptural. As someone has said, "If he is chained now, he
is on a rubber chain."
Now let us look at a little of the history of Satan:
He was originally an angel in Heaven.
He rebelled against God and was cast out of Heaven to the earth, bringing other angels with him.
Though he is now the prince of the power of the air and the god of this age, he still has access to God to accuse us day and night (Rev. 12:10).
In the middle of the tribulation period he will be cast completed from the presence of God and will pour all of his wrath upon the earth for three and one-half years.
At the end of the three and one-half year period, he
will be bound for one thousand years.
There are many thrones and many sitting upon them.
Jesus, of course, will have the main preeminence, but we, too, shall sit on
thrones with Him.
Notice the words, "AND JUDGMENT WAS GIVEN UNTO THEM."
During this one thousand years we shall judge the world.
This period will be characterized by many wonderful
things. For example, wild animals will b tamed, and serpents will lose their
poison. There will be no wars. We shall hold places of leadership. Won?t it
be wonderful to live in a city where all the city officials are children of
This period, as stated before, is the millennium. The
premillennialist believes that Jesus will come back and establish a
millennium. The postmillennialist believes that we will have the millennium
and then Jesus will come back. The amillennialist believes that there is not
going to be a millennium. Those who believe the simple words of the Bible
You will recall that already at the rapture the saved
dead have been resurrected. This verse teaches that the lost dead will not
live again until the thousand years are finished. Some teach a general
resurrection where both saved and lost will be resurrected. This is not in
line with the teachings of the Word of God.
This verse teaches that all will not be resurrected in
the FIRST resurrection. If that were not the case, then drunkards, harlots,
murderers, and all lost people are blessed and holy, since the Lord says
that those taking part in the first resurrection are blessed and holy.
We shall be priests of God. Every believer is a
We shall reign with Him a thousand years. The word "REIGN" means "to govern." We shall govern this world with Jesus for one thousand years.
THE MILLENNIUM "SATAN?S LAST WAR"
At the end of the millennium Satan will be loosed for
a season to wage his last war against Jesus. You can always look out for the
Devil when things are going smoothly. When a church or home or a Christian?s
life is going too smoothly, the Devil will try to interfere, so after one
thousand years of perfect peace, Satan once again wages war.
The question always arises in this study as to where
Satan gets his people for his battle. AT the beginning of the millennium we
will be in our glorified bodies, having come back with Jesus to start the
thousand years of peace; however, those who have been saved during the
tribulation will enter into the millennium in the natural bodies. They will
have children during the millennium, and some of those children will never
accept Jesus. After a thousand years of this, many will be unsaved and will
be willing to follow the Devil in a war against Jesus.
After one thousand years of being bound in prison,
Satan is still the same Satan. He has not reformed a bit. The same is true
with all the unregenerated people.
Verses 9, 10:
Here we find the final destruction of Satan. Two
things of note about these verses are as follows:
The Beast and the false prophet are still in the lake
of fire. You will recall that they were cast in the lake of fire as the
thousand years started. Now, at the end of one thousand years, they are
still there. This eliminates the false teaching that Hell is not eternal
This is the end of the Devil and one of the greatest days in the history of man. No more will Satan deceive the nations of the world.
"THE GREAT WHITE THRONE JUDGMENT"
The great white throne judgment is the last judgment
that will transpire. There will not be a single saved person judged. It will
only be for lost people and will determine how hot their Hell will be. Let
us look at verses 11-15 carefully.
Notice the words, "AND HIM THAT SAT ON IT." Who is it
that will be on the throne? John 5:22 teaches that all judgment has been
give to Jesus.
Notice the words, "FROM WHOSE FACE THE EARTH AND THE
HEAVEN FLED AWAY." The Bible says that some day the earth shall dissolve and
melt away. It will be at the presence of Jesus at the great white throne.
The earth will naturally flee away because it has been cursed by sin, and
sin cannot stand in the presence of God?s judgment. This question
immediately comes: then why will Heaven flee away? The only logical answer
is the fact that Satan was once an angel in Heaven. He sinned and was
immediately cast out of Heaven. Perhaps because Satan sinned in Heaven,
Heaven would flee away.
"...AND I SAW THE DEAD...." These dead are only those
who are lost. The saved dead were resurrected at the beginning of the
millennium, but Revelation 20:5 teaches that the lost dead remain in their
graves until after the thousand years; hence, those at the great white
throne are those who died unsaved.
"...SMALL AND GREAT." The lost people must face Jesus
regardless of how wealthy or how poor, how great or how small.
"...AND THE BOOKS WERE OPENED." What books will be
opened? There will be a book of deeds. There will be a book of words that
lost people have said. There may be a book of sermons that lost people have
heard. No doubt there will be a songbook containing the gospel songs that
lost people have heard. In other words, all the events that transpired in
the lives of the unsaved are recorded in God?s books.
"...ACCORDING TO THEIR WORKS." This does not mean that
they will go to Heaven if they have done good works, and to Hell if they
have done bad works. All of these people are going to Hell, but some will
suffer more than others because of their evil lives. It is only to determine
the degree of suffering.
"...AND DEATH AND HELL DELIVERED UP THE DEAD WHICH
WERE IN THEM." Death is the place where the body goes. The word "HELL"
really means "Hades," which is the place where the souls of the unsaved
people burn. At the great white throne judgment the body will come out of
the grave, and the soul will come out of Hades and be reunited. Then both
body and soul will be cast into the final lake of fire to burn forever.
This verse teaches that when both body and soul are
cast into the lake of fire; this is the second death. This is the death that
Jesus died for us on the cross. Hence, one who trusts Jesus will never die
the second death. Someone has said, "If you are born once, you die twice; if
you are born twice, you die once."
Notice the determining question of the great white
throne: IS YOUR NAME IN THE BOOK OF LIFE? If it is, you will not appear
before the great white throne. If it is not, no matter how many good deeds
you have done, how many churches you have joined, how many baptistries you
have waded through, or sacraments you have taken, you will be cast into the
lake of fire!
"THE NEW JERUSALEM"
Immediately after the great white throne judgment
takes place and the lost dead have been cast into eternal fire, John sees a
city coming down from Heaven. Several things are going to be absent from
There shall be no sea.
There will be no tears.
There shall be no death.
There will be no sorrow.
There will be no pain.
There will be no murderers.
There will be no adulterers.
There will be no idolaters.
There will be no liars.
There will be no sin.
Now let us look at the description of the city.
It has a wall.
It has twelve gates, guarded by twelve angels. The names of the twelve tribes are on the gates.
There are three gates facing in each direction.
There are twelve foundations to the City. These must be literal, as nothing figurative is mentioned here.
A reed is a measuring stick of about ten feet. With this reed the City is measured.
The City is foursquare. The length, the height, and the breadth are equal. The size is listed as 12,000 furlongs. There are approximately eight furlongs in a mile, making the size 1,500 miles.
The wall is 144 cubics high. A cubic is the distance
between the elbow and the fingertip, which is approximately eighteen inches.
This would make the wall 216 feet high.
Verses 19, 20:
Now, let us look at the foundations of the City.
Jasper-wisdom. The people who accept God?s gift are
wise. How foolish it would be to turn down such a wonderful city.
Chalcedony-drives away sadness. There will be no
broken hearts in Glory.
Emerald-discovers false friends. There are no
counterfeits in Heaven.
Sardonyx-married happiness. The bride and the Groom
shall live happily forever.
Chrysolite-frees from evil passions and melancholy.
Beryl-everlasting youth and happiness.
Topaz-fidelity and friendship. Imagine, we?ll have friendship with all the saved! Won?t it be glorious to meet Abraham, Noah, Paul, David, Joseph, the apostles, and best of all, Jesus!
No wonder somebody wrote:
Do not let your heart be troubles, neither let it be
afraid; Lean upon the precious promise that the blessed Master made, "In my
Father?s house are many mansions, if it were not so I would have told, In my
Father?s house are many mansions, and the streets are paved with God."
Out of the throne in heaven proceeds a river of the
water of life. When Ponce de Leon looked for the fountain of youth, he was
looking in the wrong places. As the old country preacher has said, "When you
get old in Heaven, just take a drink and you will be young again; when you
see a grey hair, just take a drink of water. When you see a wrinkle in your
face, just get a drink, and it will be smoothed out again."
Notice that there will be a street in Heaven.
Notice the tree of life and the fruit. Someone has
asked if there will be any eating in Heaven. Well, the only thing I know to
do with fruit is to eat it. Someone has suggested that it wouldn?t be Heaven
to them if we couldn?t eat. One thing certain is that if we do eat, we won?t
have to watch our calories and our waistlines.
Notice the purpose of the leaves. They are for the
healing of the nations. There will be no sickness, for the leaves on the
tree of life are healing agents. There will be no more polio, cancer, heart
trouble, or any other sickness. Thank God for the tree of life.
"AND THERE SHALL BE NO MORE CURSE." You will recall
that in the Garden of Eden a curse was put upon man. This curse included
suffering, death, etc. This curse will someday be lifted.
"AND HIS SERVANTS SHALL SERVE HIM." This teaches that
there shall be occupations in Heaven. We shall serve the Lord Jesus. Many
have the idea that Heaven will be a place where we shall sit around all the
time. That is not the case. We will have occupations. I believe, and yet we
shall never tire as we do here because the curse will have been lifted. I?m
looking forward to preaching in Heaven.
"AND THEY SHALL SEE HIS FACE." This is the big moment
of them all. We shall gaze upon our blessed Lord and see His face.
Notice again that we shall be branded for Jesus. We
shall wear His mark on our foreheads. That is a sign of ownership. We shall
be His forever.
The brightness of His presence will be so great that
we will have no need of any other light.
Notice again that God reminds us that these sayings
are "FAITHFUL AND TRUE." You can depend on these writings as being true. Woe
be to the man who denies them.
"SHORTLY" means "surely." These things will surely be
"BEHOLD, I COME QUICKLY." Again God is reminding us
that He is going to come quickly some day.
The word "BLESSED" also means "happy and contented."
The happiest people in the world are those who are looking for the glorious
appearing of the Lord Jesus in the air. If you ant to be a happy and
contented Christian, then look up for the coming of the Lord Jesus.
The word "KEEPETH" means "to guard as a treasure." We
are to guard as a treasure the things in the Book of Revelation. What a pity
when so few even take time to read and study this marvelous Book.
Verses 8, 9:
There is a real danger here. John began to worship the
angel which brought the message to him. The angel reminds him that God is
the one whom he should worship. Dear friend, the One to worship is not the
teachers of the truth, but the one who is the Truth. Don?t ever be guilty of
preacher worship. yes, we preachers want you to love us, but our main desire
is that you love and worship the Lord Jesus.
Notice the words, "SEAL NOT." It is the command of God
that we seal not the things written in this Book.
Notice the words, "THE TIME IS AT HAND." The reason
that we are to seal not is that the time is at hand. We are to let people
know about the prophetic truths because His coming is near.
This verse teaches that what you are here determines
what you will be when He comes. If you have been filthy here, you will be
filthy in eternity. If you have been holy here, you will be holy in
When He comes, His rewards will be with Him. We are to
work here in order that we may receive rewards from Him at the judgment seat
Verse 13, 14:
"DO HIS COMMANDMENTS" should be translated, "wash
their robes." The only way that you may have a right to the tree of life is
to wash you robes. The only way to have your robes washed is to be born of
the Spirit by faith in Jesus.
Also, we find that the only way a person can enter the
gates of the City is to wash his robes.
In this verse we find some of the ones who will NOT be
in the City. They are:
DOGS...meaning "unclean ones."
SORCERERS...those who deal in witchcraft, fortune-telling, spiritism, etc.
WHOREMONGERS...those guilty of sexual sins so prevalent in our day.
IDOLATORS..those who worship anything or anyone but the real God, our Lord Jesus Christ.
How would you like to spend eternity with this crowd?
In this verse we find the place where Jesus wants
Revelation taught...IN THE CHURCHES. So many neglect it and say that we
cannot understand it. Many churches never study this wonderful Book. God
says that He wants this Book taught in the churches.
Note the words, "ROOT AND OFFSPRING OF DAVID." How
could Jesus be both? First, He is the root of David in that all things were
made by Him as God, the Creator. Then as a man, He is a descendant of David
and will someday claim the throne of David as His own.
Note the words, "THE BRIGHT AND MORNING STAR." Have
you ever noticed the Morning Star? It is the brightest one of all just
before daybreak pointing to the coming of the day. Jesus is the Star,
pointing to the coming of day as He comes for His own.
There are two pleas in this verse:
One meaning is for the lost to come to Jesus.
I believe that the main meaning of this verse is the
plea for Jesus to come. When the personalities mentioned in this verse say,
"Come," I believe that they are beckoning for Jesus to hurry and come back
for His own.
"THE SPIRIT SAYS, COME."...He has been calling people
to Jesus and He is anxious for the marriage of the Lamb.
"THE BRIDE SAYS, COME."...In Revelation 21:2 we find
the Holy City is prepared as a bride. Not only does the Holy Spirit cry out
for Jesus to come but all Heaven is crying, "Come."
"LET HIM THAT HEARETH SAY COME."...We, too, are to
join in the chorus with the Holy Spirit and say, "Come." Think of it...all
of the believers are to join in one big chorus saying, "Come, Lord Jesus."
You have probably been to a football game when the entire crowd cried,
"Go...Go...Go...Go...Go..." So it should be as all of the redeemed cry to
Jesus day by day,...."Come...Come...Come..."
"FREELY" in this verse means "undeservingly." Even
though we are saved we do not deserve salvation. Thank God for His grace.
Verses 18, 19:
These verses warn anyone about tampering with this
Book. You had better be careful what you say about this Book, for God will
punish those who add or take away from it.
The word "SURELY" means "for a fact." Jesus is coming
quickly "for a fact." We know that He is coming.
John says, "AMEN." He just couldn?t wait for Jesus to
"EVEN SO, COME, LORD JESUS." John had seen the whole
prophetic future. He had seen the rapture, the marriage of the Lamb, the
millennium, the New Jerusalem, and the many other wonderful things that God
has prepared for those who love Jesus. He cried out, "Hurry up, Lord, and
"THE GRACE OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST BE WITH YOU ALL.
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