In today’s YouTube video, Rudy Ross explains that the various images of God’s judgment cover the same period leading up to the end.
It is best to avoid trying to concoct a precise chronology of the end, but see these events as end-time truths that motivate us to faithful service of the Savoir.
Preparation for the Bowl-Plagues
The seriousness of what we read about in the bowl-plagues calls for words of assurance that God’s ways are just.
Then I saw another portent in heaven, great and amazing: seven angels with seven plagues, which are the last, for with them the wrath of God is ended.
And I saw what appeared to be a sea of glass mixed with fire and those who had conquered the beast and its image and the number of its name standing beside the sea of glass with harps of God in their hands (Revelation 15.1-2).
“Seven” angels speak of the certainty and completeness of divine wrath against all unrighteousness. These complete God’s warnings for people who continue to reject his rule.
The struggle against the beast is a struggle against worshiping his image or being marked with the number of his name.
Each message to the seven churches in Revelation 2-3 ends with a promise to those who remain faithful under persecution. They have not abandoned their faith in the face of threats from the Antichrist and they join in heavenly praise and worship.
First-century readers of Revelation were persecuted, some with horrific deaths, because they refused to worship the Roman emperor.
Readers of Revelation in the 21st century need to identify what aspects of our culture resemble issues of Revelation’s first readers.
We need to consider the temptation to place our trust in substitutes for God, rather than our Lord and Savior.
The Song of the Faithful
Does God love me? Is God powerful enough to help me? Would a loving God execute judgment on people in the way we read in Revelation?
The redeemed of God, who have conquered the beast, answer these honest questions with words of praise for God.
And they sing the song of Moses, the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb:
“Great and amazing are your deeds,
Lord God the Almighty!
Just and true are your ways,
King of the nations!
“Lord, who will not fear
and glorify your name?
For you alone are holy.
All nations will come
and worship before you,
for your judgments have been revealed.” (Revelation 15.3-4)
(1) Does God love me? They sing “the song of the Lamb.”
Let’s not forget John the Baptist’s description of Jesus, “Look, here is the Lamb of God!” (John 1.35).
Isaiah gives a full picture of the Lamb of God, who loves us.
All we like sheep have gone astray;
we have all turned to our own way,
and the Lord has laid on him
the iniquity of us all.
He was oppressed, and he was afflicted,
yet he did not open his mouth;
like a lamb that is led to the slaughter
and like a sheep that before its shearers is silent,
so he did not open his mouth.
By a perversion of justice he was taken away.
Who could have imagined his future?
For he was cut off from the land of the living,
stricken for the transgression of my people. (Isaiah 53.6-8)
(2) Is God powerful enough to help me?
The singers declare, “Great and amazing are your deeds, Lord God the Almighty!”
God is the All-Mighty One. He demonstrates his power during Hebrew and Christian history by the way he cares for his followers.
(3) Would a loving God execute judgment on people in the way we read in Revelation?
Several times in Revelation the redeemed praise God with words similar to these: “Just and true are your ways.”
There are two facts about God’s nature. First, he is holy. Whatever judgment humans receive, it comes from the absolute perfect justice of our holy God.
Second, God is loving. John declared, “Whoever does not love does not know God, for God is love” (1 John 4.8).
Whatever wrath comes to humans originates in the heart of the purest loving Being of All.
Without a doubt, his ways are just and true.
Think About It
Let’s always remember that God’s ways are just and true, rooted in His perfect justice and boundless love.
We can trust in God’s sovereignty, acknowledge His power, and find assurance in His character as we navigate the challenges of our lives in light of these truths.
Rudy Ross and I discuss this passage on YouTube today. It is on the Bob Spradling channel.