Section 7

Three Revelations of Who God Is

Three Revelations of Who God Is

TEXT: Revelation 19

Introduction

That I May Know Him

Philippians 3:10—That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death;

From behind the veil of the human condition, it is difficult to get a clear picture of God. We describe with limited vocabulary and understand him through limited experiences.

Man often weighs in one hand, what the Bible says about God and then in the other hand weighs what we have experienced in this life. This method of "getting to know God" is faulty at best and has resulted in multitudes of skewed impressions of Who God is and what He is like.

It is not God's fault humanity does not truly KNOW Him. It is the fault of our limited perspective. It will not be until "by-and-by" that even the most faithful of God's people will see and understand Him in His fullness. But, until then, it is a journey of faith that brings us closer and closer to God.

Will I believe God is Who He says He is? Will I take Him at His Word? Will I pattern my life on the foundation of a faith that says, "God is True and Faithful?"

Today that faith is developed and tested, but one day it will be rewarded!

Blinded very young, hymn-writer Francis Jane Crosby (1820-1915) began writing poetry as young girl. At the age of eight she wrote these words:

Oh, what a happy soul am I! Although I cannot see,
I am resolved that in this world, contented I will be.
How many blessings I enjoy that other people don't;
To weep and sigh because I am blind, I cannot, and I won't.

Once a well-intentioned Scottish minister remarked to her: "I think it is a great pity that the master, when He showed so many gifts upon you, did not give you sight." She responded, "Do you know that if at birth I had been able to make one petition to my Creator, it would have been that I should be born blind?" "Why?" asked the surprised minister. "Because, when I get to heaven, the first face that shall ever gladden my sight will be that of my Savior."

In her hymn "My Savior First of All", she wrote…

When my lifework is ended and I cross the swelling tide, When the bright and glorious morning I shall see; I shall know my Redeemer when I reach the other side, And His smile will be the first to welcome me.
I shall know Him, I shall know Him, And redeemed by His side I shall stand; I shall know Him, I shall know Him By the print of the nails in His hand.

2 Timothy 4:7-8—I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing. [manifestation, (especially) the second coming of Christ]

The Preface of Revelation 19

Revelation 19:1mdash;And after these things…

We are at the end of the third and final division of the book of Revelation. In 19:1, "after these things" is the same phrase in 1:19 "things which shall be hereafter". In review, Revelation has three main divisions:

3 Main Divisions

The Things Seen (Ch.1)

The Things Which Are (Ch. 2-3)

The Things Which Shall be Hereafter (Ch. 4-22)

Revelation 1:19 Write the things which thou hast seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter;

God is infinite and our understanding of him is constantly developing all the while He never changes. In Revelation chapter 19 we are given three different scenes that illuminate different aspects of God's nature. Herein are three revelations of Who God is:

Three Revelations of Who God Is

The Lord Our God Omnipotent who Reigns (vs. 1-6)

The Bridegroom Who Will be Wed (vs. 7-10)

The Lion Who will Return in Judgment (vs. 11-21)

## The Lord Our God Omnipotent who Reigns (vs. 1-6)

He Gave Us a Voice for Singing

I heard a great voice of much people in heaven

And the four and twenty elders and the four beasts fell down and worshipped God that sat on the throne

Revelation 19:4 is the last reference in the Bible to the twenty-four elders and the four living creatures (by those titles).

v.6 the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings,

He is the Words of the Song

…saying, Alleluia; Salvation, and glory, and honour, and power, unto the Lord our God:

Alleluia/Hallelujah

The Hebrew word "halal" [STRONG's 01984] in relation to God means to be clear of sound or color or to shine. Therefore, it means to make a show, to boast or to celebrate. 'Halal' can be found in 140 verses in the O.T.

"Halal" [Hallelujah] is common in the Psalms where it is mostly translated "Praise Ye the LORD" (Psalm 105:45; 106:1; 106:48; 111:1; 112:1; 113:1; 146:1; 148:1; 149:1; 150:1).

Psalm 150:1—Praise ye the LORD. Praise God in his sanctuary: praise him in the firmament of his power.

Interestingly, in the N.T., Alleluia/Hallelujah can only be found here in Revelation 19. The Greek word "allelouia" is imperative just as the Hebrew word "halal". Alleluia is a command to Praise the Lord (Jah)! It is an adoring exclamation—HALLELUJAH!

Salvation

Glory

Honour

Power

He is the Reason Why We Sing

His Judgments are True

2 For true and righteous are his judgments: for he hath judged the great whore, which did corrupt the earth with her fornication,

He Keeps His Promises

and hath avenged the blood of his servants at her hand. 3 And again they said, Alleluia. And her smoke rose up for ever and ever.

He Reigns

saying, Alleluia: for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth.

##The Bridegroom Who Will be Wed (vs. 7-10)

The Lamb will be Wed

7 Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. 8 And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints. 9 And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God. 10 And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See thou do it not: I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus: worship God: for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.

## The Lion Who will Return in Judgment (vs. 11-21) > 11 And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war.

The Mystery of His Name

12 His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself.

(to his enemies: you don't even know me! (contrast on the cross, the sign written over His head! Mt 27:29 And when they had platted a crown of thorns, they put it upon his head, and a reed in his right hand: and they bowed the knee before him, and mocked him, saying, Hail, King of the Jews! Mt 27:37 And set up over his head his accusation written, THIS IS JESUS THE KING OF THE JEWS.)

13 And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God. 14 And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean. 15 And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. 16 And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.

An Invitation to another 'supper' is given: 17 And I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the fowls that fly in the midst of heaven, Come and gather yourselves together unto the supper of the great God; 18 That ye may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses, and of them that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great.

19 And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against him that sat on the horse, and against his army. 20 And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone. 21 And the remnant were slain with the sword of him that sat upon the horse, which sword proceeded out of his mouth: and all the fowls were filled with their flesh.

##Conclusion

The Bridegroom Who Will be Wed (vs. 7-10)

Revelation 19:7-10

A Joyous Marriage and Marriage Supper

The Marriage Supper

Revelation 19:7—Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come,…

Now that the harlot has fallen, the faithful woman comes to her rightful honors. The bethrothed, now becomes a bride. The time of her marriage has come, and grand banquet that follows, will begin.

Revelation 19:9—And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God.

The Wedding

There is no question who the Bridegroom is, but who is the Bride?

Some say, that ALL who are born again make up the Bride. Let's consider Psalm 45 in light of this. Here is a brief outline of Psalm 45:8,9,14.

vs. 8 First, the King Comes Forth Out of the Ivory Palaces (Alone) vs. 9 Second, the King with the Queen vs. 14 Third, we see the virgins who are the companions, associates or bosom friends of the Queen

These virgins do not go with the Queen when she is taken, but they follow after her.

Psalm 45:14—She shall be brought unto the king in raiment of needlework: the virgins her companions that follow her shall be brought unto thee

We also see this truth in the parable of the ten virgins of Matthew 25. Implied in this parable is that not all those who finally get to heaven are of that class which makes up the Bride.

To understand who the Bride is, we need to observe the different classes of persons given in the text.

  1. The Voice of the one who says "Let us be glad", vs. 10
  2. Those who are to rejoice with him ("us") vs. 9

These are considered blessed to a) witness the marriage and to b) participate in the banquet.

The Bride is not merely going to witness a marriage or eat a celebratory feast, but she is one of the two reasons for the grand day! She is the Bridegroom's heart's desire and the one He has chosen to unite with as one. (Amos 3:3; 2 Corinthians 6:14)

The Preparation of the Lamb's Wife

Revelation 19:7,8—…and his wife hath made herself ready. 8 And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.

The Making of the Bride

How does this bride so capture the eye and heart of the groom? What has led her to this grand wedding day? Three things catch our notice in her preparation:

Her Self Activity - "made herself read"

The Bridegroom does not prepare her directly, but she will ready herself by applying what He has provided.

The Action of Bestowing of the Gifts of Grace- "to her was granted"
The Action of Faith and Obedience - "arrayed in fine linen"

The garments reveal the nature of preparation. The outstanding characteristics of her garments are: clean (free from impurity) and white (shining and brilliant). The fine lines she wears is the "righteous acts" or "equitable deeds" of the saints.

There is righteousness that is imputed by faith which is the free gift of God in Christ. There is also righteousness that is imparted which is the fruit or works of faith. Consider Philippians 3:8-14. In Psalm 45:13-14, her clothing is of wrought gold (divine righteousness) and her raiment is also of needlework (righteous acts or works of faith).

The Marks of the Bride

She Will have a Lamb's Nature
She Will be Meek and Lowly
Humble
Obedient
Overcomer

The Marriage of the Lamb

What is the marriage of the Lamb? John did not see it, but he did hear the heavens rejoicing!

We can assume a few things about this "wedding" based on the terms used. Any marriage being a union, the Bride will be united with the Bridegroom. Being with Him, she will reign with him and share with Him in all His glorious inheritance.

We are not told what the ceremony will hold. It is still a grand and glorious mystery!

John's Response

Revelation 19:10—And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See thou do it not: I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus: worship God: for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.

The Lion Who Will Return in Judgment

Review:

# Three Revelations of Who God Is TEXT: Revelation 19

Introduction - You can Know Who God Is and What He is Like (Phil. 3:10)

The Lord Our God Omnipotent who Reigns (Rev. 19:1-6)

The Bridegroom Who Will be Wed (Rev. 19:7-10)

The Lion Who will Return in Judgment (vs. 11-21)

Theme: Revelation 19:11-21

Revelation 19:11-21 is about the battle of the Great Day of the Lord. (Zephaniah 1:14; Revelation 16:14) This battle will be of great and yet righteous violence and vengeance.

Violence

Words of Battle: … white horse … judge and make war … vesture dipped in blood… armies … sharp sword, …smite … rule … rod of iron … treadeth … fierceness and wrath .. eat the flesh … make war…beast was taken, and with him the false prophet…These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone…slain with the sword

Vengeance

A search for "vengeance" in the Bible will result in at least 40 verses. And the context is almost always in reference to God taking vengeance on His enemies.

Read: Deut. 32:35; Psalm 94:1; Romans 12:19; Romans 3:5

Deuteronomy 32:35 To me belongeth vengeance, and recompence; their foot shall slide in due time: for the day of their calamity is at hand, and the things that shall come upon them make haste.

Psalms 94:1 O LORD God, to whom vengeance belongeth; O God, to whom vengeance belongeth, shew thyself.

Romans 12:19 Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord. (Leviticus 19:18)

The best revenge is to be unlike him who performed the injury. —Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

God alone is God. We are never to usurp the AUTHORITY of God -- vengeance for spiritual wrong belongs exclusively to God.

On 17 June, Michel Servetus was convicted of heresy, "thanks to the 17 letters sent by John Calvin (Calvin agreed that those whom the ruling religious authorities determined to be heretics should be punished:), and sentenced to be burned with his books. Historians record his last words as: "**Jesus, Son of the Eternal God, have mercy on me**."

Is God unrighteous in His vengeance? {"Do as I say and not as I do"?}

Romans 3:5 But if our unrighteousness commend the righteousness of God, what shall we say? Is God unrighteous who taketh vengeance? (I speak as a man)

Dictionary definition of Avenge: inflict hurt or harm on someone for an injury or wrong suffered at their hands. (to carry out a grudge)

Even deeper than the sense of carrying out a "grudge" is the sense that Scripture gives to revenge. In the scripture, in reference to God, revenge/avenge/vengeance has at its root meaning PUNISHMENT. God is not petty, he is righteous. We see God in our text not passionately out of control because of a vandetta, but we see Christ in His Divine glory*.

The Lion is a Mighty Conqueror (vs 11-16)

Verse 11 He is Righteous and Glorious

Revelation 19:11—And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war.

Verse 12 His Eyes, Crowns and Name

12 His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself.

His Eyes were a Flame of Fire

Two things to consider: His omniscent perception and his omnipotent wrath.

On His Head Many Crowns

He is not just Judge and General, but He is also King. In 2 Samuel 12:30 when David defeated the Ammonites he put the crown of the vanquished king on his head. The Dragon has seven diadems as "possesor of the seven great world powers". (Rev. 12:3) The beast has ten crowns combining 10 soveriegn powers. (Rev. 13:1) The accumulation of crowns relates to the accumulation of victories and dominion.

He has an Unknowable Name

John saw that the name was written, but did not and could not record it as he was awed with its splendor making it too much for him to understand or know. (Matthew 11:27 the depth of God)

Verse 13 Reputation, Purpose and Position of Christ

His Reputation

…And he was clothed with a vesture.

His moral character or reputation is seen. He is not naked. He and all those in Heavenly places are clothed. Those who serve the devil are naked. (Mark 5:15 "legion"; Acts 19:16 "Sons of Sceva")

He is clothed with a long inner garment (Rev. 1:13) and an outer garment ("vesture").

His Purpose

… dipped in blood:…

The blood in this context is not His own, but are the bloodstains of His enemies. We see here the marks of a veteran mighty in battle. This is He who fought for Israel as He fought from Heaven against Egyptians, Canaanites, Philistines and many others. Remember what happened to Dagon? (1 Samuel 5:1-7)

Isaiah 63:1-4—Who is this that cometh from Edom, with dyed garments from Bozrah? this that is glorious in his apparel, travelling in the greatness of his strength? I that speak in righteousness, mighty to save. 2 Wherefore art thou red in thine apparel, and thy garments like him that treadeth in the winefat? 3 I have trodden the winepress alone; and of the people there was none with me: for I will tread them in mine anger, and trample them in my fury; and their blood shall be sprinkled upon my garments, and I will stain all my raiment. 4 For the day of vengeance is in mine heart, and the year of my redeemed is come.

He is in our text wearing the "same garments" as then! He is coming in the same capacity for the same purpose and with the same invincible power.

His Position

…and his name is called The Word of God. (John 1:1)

In our text, He is not coming at this time as a lamb to save, but as "the Word of God" / Judge. He will judge the world by His Word. Three names are given here indicating his position:

  1. An Unknowable Name vs. 12
  2. The Word of God vs. 13, 15

Revelation 19:15—And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.

  1. King of Kings and Lord of Lords vs. 16

Revelation 19:16—And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.

vs. 14 The Armies of Heaven

The Lion of Judah is Not Alone

When the Lord Jesus is revealed from Heaven in flaming fire taking vengeance upon them that know not God and that obey not the Gospel, He does not come alone.

Revelation 19:14—And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean.

2 Thessalonians 1:7,8—And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, 8 In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ:

Compare with 2 Kings 6:17 and Psalm 68:17;

Jude 1:14,15—And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints, 15 To execute judgment upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed, and of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spoken against him.

Saints from all ages of time, make up the armies of the sky. Notice that the Bride goes to Heaven in a Battle (Revelation 12:7) and then comes again in a battle (Revelation 19:14).

They Followed Him

He is the commander who gives the orders. They do His bidding. In Matthew 26:53 He could have called 12 legions of angels, but He died alone. (A Roman legion consisted of about six thousand soldiers, or upwards.)

Upon White Horses

Clothed in Fine Linen, white and clean

They Wear no Armor

The Lion's Last Battle (vs. 17-21)

Some Background on this Battle

The Demise of Satan throughout Scripture

Christ is always the victor. Lucifer rebelled and fell to the condemnation of the devil. Satan deceived Eve, but out of a woman came the seed of the Redeemer! Jesus Christ was betrayed or forsaken by those closest to Him through the wiles of the devil, but three days later Up from the Grave Christ Arose! In the last days, the devil will deceive many, but God will still have his faithful and holy remnant.

We are in a time, when evil appears to advance his cause without much opposition. No matter the appearances, satan is a defeated foe. We are commanded to resist, defend against and oppose the devil in daily battles. But Christ will have the final say-so and a final "battle" will END the Wicked One and his servants.

2 Thessalonians 2:8—And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming:

The Gathering and Wine Press in Revelation 14:14-20

Revelation 14 describes Christ coming as one like unto the Son of man sitting on a white cloud. Having in His hand a sharp sickle, the following judgment is described as both a "gathering of harvest" and a "wine press of wrath".

Revelation 14:19-20— And the angel thrust in his sickle into the earth, and gathered the vine of the earth, and cast it into the great winepress of the wrath of God. 20 And the winepress was trodden without the city, and blood came out of the winepress, even unto the horse bridles, by the space of a thousand and six hundred furlongs.

Revelation 19:15—…he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.

The 6th vial in Revelation 16:12-16

Revelation 16 told us that the location of this great battle would be in Armageddon. On the human side, the kings of the earth are inspired to gather together against God by evil spirits.

Revelation 16:14 For they are the spirits of devils, working miracles, which go forth unto the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty.

Revelation 16:16 And he gathered them together into a place called in the Hebrew tongue Armageddon.

Making War with the Lamb in Revelation 17:14

Revelation 17:14 describes the kings of the earth as making war with the lamb, but the Lamb and those that are with Him overcome them.

Revelation 17:14 These [the ten kings of the earth] shall make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome them: for he is Lord of lords, and King of kings: and they that are with him are called, and chosen, and faithful.

An Invitation to this Battle

An Invitation to another 'supper' is given: 17 And I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the fowls that fly in the midst of heaven, Come and gather yourselves together unto the supper of the great God; 18 That ye may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses, and of them that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great.

19 And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against him that sat on the horse, and against his army. 20 And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone. 21 And the remnant were slain with the sword of him that sat upon the horse, which sword proceeded out of his mouth: and all the fowls were filled with their flesh.

Conclusion

Binding and Loosing of Satan

Binding for 1000 Years and Loosing of Satan

text: Revelation 20:1-3, 7-10

##Satan Sealed in a Bottomless Pit (vs. 1-3)

Re 20:1 And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. 2 And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years, 3 And cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season.

##Souls Living and Reigning with Christ 1000 Years (vs. 4-6)

(covered in future lesson)

##Following the 1000 Years (vs. 7-10)

After the 1000 year reign, the devil be released, deceive the nations and finally face his doom.

Satan will be released for a season (vs. 7)

Satan is loose, will then be bound, but released again and then punished. It seems like a great pity after 1,000 year of peace for the devil to be released, but it will be necessary. Verse 3 says that he "MUST BE LOOSED". There are three perspectives to consider when tackling this mystery.

####The Perspective of the Devil

It will prove that no matter how much time goes by and opportunity given him, he will always be the devil. He doesn't improve. It will be righteous to judge him eternally.

####The Perspective of Humanity

The nations during this 1,000 years need the grace and help of God, just as much as anyone. The loosing of the devil will prove that man's hasn't changed. The devil will still be deceiving and humanity that does not lean hard on God will still be deceived.

####The Perspective of God

God will have exhausted every measure of grace throughout the dispensations of time. An eternal hell would not be justified for a loving God, unless He first extended every possible invitation. (He tried everything and gave His best.) There will be no regrets or "what if God had done something differently" in eternity.

Satan will deceive the nations (vs. 8)

He deceives the nations and terrible disaster ensues. It is the devil who has opened "Pandora's Box".

Satan will face his doom (vs. 9-10)

Hell was specially prepared for the devil. Mathew 25:41

##Great White Throne Judgment (vs. 11-15)

(covered in future lesson)

1000 Year Reign

1000 Year Reign

text: Revelation 20:4-6

Revelation 20:4-6—And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. 5 But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection. 6 Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years.

What is so confusing about a Millennial Reign?

Our text tells us some will live and reign with Christ 1,000 years. Millennnial simply means relating to a a period of 1,000 years. It is a fairly universal Christian doctrine that this "Millenial Reign" will take place, but there is also much debate concerning the details of this doctrine.

Let us categorize and consider some of the points made in this debate. For brevity we will refer to the period of time of the Millenial Reign as "the Reign".

Premillennialism

The Reign begins with the Second Coming of Christ and will last exactly 1,000 literal years. The Reign will be a physical one located on the earth. The Reign will be preceded by a literal 7 years of tribulation that concludes with the literal return of Christ on earth. There is great diversity of thought among Premillenialists concerning the timing of the Rapture. Premillenialism can present the timing of the Rapture in at least four ways:

  1. It takes place before the tribulation.
  2. It takes place mid-way through the tribulation.
  3. It takes place after the tribulation.
  4. It takes place before the Wrath of God is poured out on the earth.

Simply said, Premillennialists can be either Pre-tribulation, Mid-tribulation, Post Tribulation, Pre-Wrath or even "we don't know when" Rapturists. One thing is agreed upon, the Rapture will take place.

Many premillennialists believe that God will fulfill many unfilled promises to Israel during the Reign.

[Chuck Swindoll, John Walvoord, the Left Behind Series, Dallas Theological Seminary ]

Amillennialism

Amillennism (Greek a- "no" + "millennialism) is the rejection of the belief that Christ will have a 1000 year long physical reign on the earth. The Reign began in Heaven with Christ's resurrection and will last an undetermined number of years, but does end at the Second Coming of Christ. The Reign is characterized as strictly spiritual and accomplished through conversion of the lost. The Tribulation will be a brief period of suffering at the end of the Reign and before Christ's Second Coming. The Tribulation does not last any definite number of years, but it is definitely brief in relation to the time-line of all history. The rapture takes place as part of Christ's Second Coming at the conclusion of the Tribulation period.

[Covenant theologians, Lutherans, a minority of Baptists, Catholics, most Presbyterian and Reformed churches, Hank Hanegraff, and R.C. Sproul. Even as early as Justin Martyr's time (138-165 A.D.) he said genuine Christians disagreed on the literal millennium. Even in the early church both groups accepted each other in Christ. ]

Postmillennialism

Postmillenialism views Second Coming of Christ as happening after a golden age of Christian prosperity. The Reign begins when a majority of the of the population is converted (reference: Matthew 24:14). The Reign lasts for an indefinite time until Christ's Second Coming and not a literal 1000 years (1000 years is interpreted simply as "a long period of time"). Like in Amillennialism the Reign is a spiritual and not physical one. The Tribulation will be a brief period that takes place before Jesus' Second Coming. The Rapture takes place as part of the Second Coming of Christ.

As similar as Amillennialism and Postmillenialism are, its difficult to tell them apart. Both emphasize a non-literal interpretation and deny the Reign taking place literally on earth. One major difference is that Postmillenialism holds that the Reign is happening right now and that the world will increasingly get better as we approach Christ's return. Christ will return after Christians and not Christ have well established God's Kingdom on the earth.

Who will take Part in this Administration? (vs. 4,5)

At least three groups of people are mentioned in our text or elsewhere in Scripture in connection with judging the world.

The Overcomers

"And I Saw Thrones"

These are seats of authority.

Revelation 3:21—To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.

Revelation 12:5—And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throne.

"And They Sat Upon Them"

The seats are occupied.

"And Judgment was Given Unto Them"

These have been trusted with discretionary power to act.

Matthew 24:46-47—Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing. 47 Verily I say unto you, That he shall make him ruler over all his goods.

We can compare this scene with that in Acts 26:6. In Acts 26, Paul is the one being judged, but in our text, it is the saints who are administrating the judgment.

1 Corinthians 6:2—2 Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? …

The Martyrs

"And I Saw the Souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus"

Why Were They Beheaded?

These martyrs had been beheaded for their witness of Jesus and the Word of God. They had resisted worship of the beast and the receiving of his mark.

  1. Witness of Jesus
  2. Stood for Truth
  3. Refused False Worship
  4. Refused the mark of the Beast.

Their resistance meant an end to natural life, but they had eternal life.

How Do They Live Again?

Those Christian martyrs are to be resurrected and will LIVE and REIGN with Christ 1,000 years.

vs. 4…they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years

John clarifies that this resurrection is partial and that not all the dead are resurrected at this time. The remaining dead will not be resurrected until AFTER the 1,000 Year Reign.

What is the Meaning of this Special Blessing? (v. 6)

There are some who will enjoy the special blessing of taking part in the first resurrection, overcoming the second death, being priests of God and Christ and reigning with Jesus 1,000 years on the earth.

What do some of these terms mean?

  1. First Resurrection
  2. Second Death
  3. Priests of God and of Christ
  4. 1000 Year Reign

Great White Throne Judgment

Great White Throne Judgment

text: Revelation 20:11-15

The Judge of this Court (vs. 11)

A Great White Throne and Him that Sat on It

11 And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them.

Compare this Throne with details given in Revelation 4 (vs. 11).

  1. chapter Four described the throne of God just as the judgments of God on the earth were to begin. That throne was set in Heaven, but in Revelation 20 we are not told where this is set.

  2. The first has a rainbow around it signifying God's covenant and promises. This was the revelation of grace and mercy. This throne is naked for it has no hopes, no covenant of good in Hell.

  3. The firsth had lightnings, thunders and voices which are indicators of warning. To this throne is nothing like that ascribed but greatness and whiteness. Immeasurable power and pure justice. No more warning, probation. This is the "third strike".

  4. The first had 7 burning torches and seven spirits of God. The fulness of Redemption. This is accompanied with nothing gracious.

5.the first had beforre it a glassy sea. Here nothing celestial is visible.

  1. The first had singing and joyful exultation, the giving of praises to God and the lamb and rewards for righteousness. Here is no song or voice of gladness.

The Standard of Proof of this Court (vs. 12)

The amount of evidence which a plaintiff or prosecuting attorney must present in a trial in order to win is called the standard of proof. Different cases require different standards of proof depending on what is at stake.

There at least 3 common standards of proof in courts of law:

  1. "beyond a reasonable doubt"
  2. "clear and convincing evidence"

This standard is often applied to civil cases. According to this standard a person has to prove that it is "more likely than not" that the defendant committed the crime. This standard is not as strict as "beyond a reasonable doubt".

  1. "preponderance of evidence"

This Court's Standard of Proof

  1. "beyond all doubt"

The Judge will require no third-hand testimony. He is the "Faithful and True Witness". Jesus Christ is the incriminating witness against all who reject God's plan of salvation.

Revelation 3:14—And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God;

Proverbs 15:3—The eyes of the LORD are in every place, beholding the evil and the good.

In this court, the standard of proof will be "beyond all doubt". God does not make mistakes.

  1. Judged Out of the Books

12 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.

Judged out of the book according to God's law and not the law of man. Each biography will be opened.

  1. Demas - The backslider, I preached and sang and lost it
  2. Agrippa - Almost I became a Christian
  3. Ananias and Sapphira - I love God, I just want to have the world at the same time. (Professed it, but didn't live it)
  4. Judas Iscariot - Lived, walked, called by Jesus and even obtained part of the ministry, yet he traded his soul for 30 pieces of silver. (Matthew 26:15)
  5. Herod - Why didn't you give up your unlawful wife? I loved her too much.
  6. King Ahab - My wife is to blame.
  7. King Saul - I wanted to please the people.
  8. Cain - I thought my offering was just as good as my brothers.

When placed in the context of eternal judgment our excuses for sin are so trivial!

The Jurisdiction of this Court (vs. 13)

13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.

The Severity of this Court (vs. 14)

14 And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.

God is not soft on sin!

The Failure to Appear Rate of this Court (vs. 15)

The State of Maine's Maine Pretrial Services claims a "failure to appear rate" of less than 1% of its clients. That is pretty good, but not as good a rate as the Great White Throne Judgment. There will be a judgment and all will be there (Rev. 6:15). There will be no place to escape this appointment. There will be no jumping bail—failure to appear rate: 0%.

This will require a resurrection

Roll Call for a Hell Bound Train

Revelation 20:15 And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.

1 Corinthians 6:9-10—Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, 10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.

fearful, unbelieving, fornicators effeminate, abominable, murderers, whoremongers, sorcerers, idolatars, liars

Psalm 9:17 The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God.

James Reynolds -- They say Hell is a place without the presence of God, but that is not altogether true. Hell is a place filled with God's wrath— no love, no mercy, no grace. Hell will never experience joy or peace.

Hell is a terrible place and it was not made for man (Matthew 25:41). God does not want anyone to go to hell (2 Peter 3:9). God does not send anyone to hell so much as each one there chose it for themselves (Hebrews 10:29): 1) They refused the remedy , 2) insulted the Grace of God, 3) pushed aside the prayers of the righteous and 4) rejected the Love of God.

New Heaven and New Earth

New Heaven and New Earth

TEXT: Revelation 21

Revelation 21:1—And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.

Introduction

John sees that there will be a new heaven and a new earth and then he describes in awesome detail, "New Jerusalem".

John applies the descriptions of walls, gates, a tabernacle and foundations and even calls what he sees in a lot of places a "city". But, John also compares what he sees with "a bride adorned" and names it in one place "the lamb's wife".

John describes what he sees coming out of heaven from God as a "holy city", "new Jerusalem", "as a bride adorned", "tabernacle of God", "great city", "holy Jerusalem", "the Bride" and "the Lamb's Wife".

Who or what is this "city" like? Is it a place or a person? (vs. 9) In order to understand this "great city", we must carefully consider the details as John laid them out for us.

The End and The Beginning (vs. 1-8)

The "end" John sees is not an "extinction" but a transition— made new!

First Glimpse (vs. 1,2)

Heaven and Earth. John's first impression is that he is seeing something somewhat familiar, and yet it is altogether different. He says he sees a "new earth" and yet it is an earth with no sea. He says he sees a "new heaven" and yet it is a heaven where the veil between it and earth is removed.

Then John sees another "new" thing. It is New Jerusalem coming down from God out of heaven like as if it were a "young married or betrothed woman" who is ready for her husband as she has put everything in proper order and is beautifully decorated.

A Proclamation (vs. 3-8)

The great voice (THE Voice!) proclaims what God is going to do.

Dwell with Men (vs. 3)

Notice that New Jerusalem comes "down from God" and from "out of heaven" in verse 2. This is not a description of God's people finally going to heaven to be with God or "men with God". What John sees is more accurately understood as "God with men".

Revelation 21:3—Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.

Bring an End to Former Things (vs. 4-8)

Revelation 21:6—And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end…

There are many awesome advantages to this new arrangement:

  1. No More Tears
  2. No More Death
  3. No More Sorrow or Crying
  4. No More Pain
  5. No More Thirst
  6. No More Battles
  7. No More Unbelief

A Tour of New Jerusalem (vs. 9-27)

9 And there came unto me one of the seven angels which had the seven vials full of the seven last plagues, and talked with me, saying, Come hither,

I will shew thee the bride, the Lamb's wife.

The Vantage Point (vs. 10)

In the Spirit

And he carried me away in the spirit

A Great and High Mountain

to a great and high mountain,

The Descriptions (vs. 10-

  1. A City (vs. 10)

and shewed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem,

  1. Comes out of Heaven from God (vs. 10) descending out of heaven from God,

  2. Having the Glory of God (vs. 11) 11 Having the glory of God: and her light was like unto a stone most precious, even like a jasper stone, clear as crystal;

  3. 12 Gates, 12 Angels and 12 Names (vs 12,13,21, 25-27)

and had twelve gates, and at the gates twelve angels, and names written thereon, which are the names of the twelve tribes of the children of Israel: 13 On the east three gates; on the north three gates; on the south three gates; and on the west three gates.

21 And the twelve gates were twelve pearls; every several gate was of one pearl: and the street of the city was pure gold, as it were transparent glass.

ALL MAY BE SAVED

25 And the gates of it shall not be shut at all by day: for there shall be no night there. 26 And they shall bring the glory and honour of the nations into it. 27 And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb's book of life.

  1. A Wall with 12 Foundations (vs. 12,14-20) 12 And had a wall great and high,

14 And the wall of the city had twelve foundations, and in them the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.

15 And he that talked with me had a golden reed to measure the city, and the gates thereof, and the wall thereof. 16 And the city lieth foursquare, and the length is as large as the breadth: and he measured the city with the reed, twelve thousand furlongs. The length and the breadth and the height of it are equal. 17 And he measured the wall thereof, an hundred and forty and four cubits, according to the measure of a man, that is, of the angel.

18 And the building of the wall of it was of jasper: and the city was pure gold, like unto clear glass. 19 And the foundations of the wall of the city were garnished with all manner of precious stones.

In the heavenly city we have harmony, not monotony; variety, not sameness; unity, not uniformity. The stones are not arranged in the order of the high priest's breastplate, but according to their various shades of colour, beginning from the foundation.—Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

NOTE: The following are merely educated guesses as to the actual gems referred to in Revelation 21.

1.Jasper, dark opaque green.

2.Sapphire, Lapis-lazuli, opaque blue.

3.Chalcedony, an Emerald of a greenish hue.

4.Emerald/Smaragdus, bright transparent green.

5.Sardonyx, white and red.

6.Sardius, bright red.

7.Chrysolite, our Topaz, bright yellow.

8.Beryl, bluish green.

9.Topaz, or Peridot, yellowish green.

10.Chrysoprasus, a darker shade of the same colour.

11.Jacinth/Hyacinthus, Sapphire, sky blue.

12.Amethyst, violet.

  1. The Lamb of God

The Lamb is the Temple

22 And I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it.

The Lamb is the Light

23 And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof. 24 And the nations of them which are saved shall walk in the light of it: and the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honour into it.

Heaven

Heaven

Text: Revelation 22:1-5

Revelation 22:1 And he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb. 2 In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. 3 And there shall be no more curse: but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and his servants shall serve him: 4 And they shall see his face; and his name shall be in their foreheads. 5 And there shall be no night there; and they need no candle, neither light of the sun; for the Lord God giveth them light: and they shall reign for ever and ever.

John 14:1-3—Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. 2 In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.

What is Heaven?

Heaven is a Real Place. God created it as a place of His own beauty and perfect design.

Genesis 1:1—In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.

Heaven is not a state or condition of mind, heaven is not a myth or fairy tale, heaven is not imagination heaven is not fiction. Heaven is Real!

Jesus said it is is a "place" in John 14:2.

Where is Heaven?

Genesis 1:1 -- HEBREW: meaning to be lofty; the sky (as aloft; the dual perhaps alluding to the visible arch in which the clouds move, as well as to the higher ether where the celestial bodies revolve

Psalm 103:11—Ps 103:11 For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is his mercy toward them that fear him.

Heaven is high above the earth. Job 26:7

Heaven is in the north place. Isaiah 14:13

Heaven is where God is. 1 Kings 8:30, Isiah 66:1

What is Heaven Like?

Heaven belongs to God. (Genesis 14:19,22)

Romans 14:17

Revelation 21:4 And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.

Isaiah 66:1—Thus saith the LORD, The heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool: where is the house that ye build unto me? and where is the place of my rest?

Job 3:17 There the wicked cease from troubling; and there the weary be at rest.

no wicked, no sin, weary at rest Rev. 7:16-17; 21:4; 22:3

Heaven is a happy place. Psalm 16:11 Luke 15:7 Joy in heaven 1 Cor. 2:9

Heaven is a place of rewards. Matthew 5:12

Heaven is a beautiful place (notice our text).

Who Will Go to Heaven?

Matthew 5:3 the poor in spirit Romans 8:17 Revelation 22:14

Not Everyone is Going to Heaven Matthew 7:21; John 3:3; 1 Corinthians 6:9-10

1Co 15:50 Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.

Phil. 3:21

Will We Know Anyone in Heaven?

1 Corinthians 13:12 (different but yes)

Heaven wouldn't be home if we didn't know anyone. &mdashJames Reynolds, Sr.

Heaven is a mystery now, but not then!

How do we Get to Heaven?

Matthew 18:3—And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.

Matthew 19:23 hardly a rich man

John 14:6—Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

Hymn: THERE's NO DISAPPOINTMENT IN HEAVEN

Words: Frederick M. Lehman, 1914; he wrote these words in Chicago, Illinois, while suffering financial reverses.

Music: Frederick Lehman, harmony by his daughter Claudia L. Mays

"There's no disappointment in heaven, No weariness, sorrow or pain; No hearts that are bleeding and broken, No song with a minor refrain. The clouds of our earthly horizon Will appear in the sky, For all will be sunshine and gladness, With never a tear nor a sigh. We'll never pay rent for our mansion, The taxes will never come due; Our garments will never grow threadbare, But always be fadeless and new. We'll never be hungry nor thirsty, Nor languish in poverty there, For all the rich bounties of heaven His sanctified children will share. There'll never be crepe on the door-knob, No funeral train in the sky; No graves on the hillside of glory, For there we shall never more die. The old will be young there forever, Transformed in a moment of time; Immortal we'll stand in his likeness The stars and the sun to outshine. I'm bound for the beautiful city My Lord has prepared for His own; Where all the redeemed of all ages Sing "Glory" around the white throne; Sometimes I grow homesick for heaven, And the glories I there shall behold, What a joy it will be when My Savior I see, In that beautiful city of gold!"

Epilogue

Epilogue (22:6-21)

Revelation 22:6-21 can be considered the epilogue or the last and concluding statements.

The Truthfulness of These Writings (v. 6)

Revelation 22:6—And he said unto me, These sayings are faithful and true: and the Lord God of the holy prophets sent his angel to shew unto his servants the things which must shortly be done.

Truth is Refreshing

READ: Philippians 4:8-9;

No One Ever Spoke it Like Jesus!

Said of the Lord Himself "Never a man spake like this man."

This Sayings are True

Three times it is repeated that the sayings of the book are true (19:9; 21:5; 22:6).

Three times it is affirmed that the sayings come directly from God (1:1; 22:6; 22:16).

Romains 3:4—God forbid: yea, let God be true, but every man a liar;…

Either this book is nothing but forgery, or it is the most authoritative writing of all time—James R. Reynolds, Sr.

These Are Gods Own Words ("Faithful And True") and we must take them, build our faith on them, and testify of them. ( 2 Peter 1:19; Matthew 7:24-27; Isaiah 43:10)

The Repetition of a Special Blessing (v. 7)

The special blessing promised to those who hear and keep the sayings of Revelation that was given in the first chapter is now repeated.

Revelation 1:3—Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand.

Revelation 22:7—Behold, I come quickly: blessed is he that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy of this book.

Is there another Book that is so intense, emphatic, constant or having so much good in it to be gained and ill to be avoided?

The Effect Upon The Apostle (vs. 8-9)

Revelation 22:8,9—And I John saw these things, and heard them. And when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which shewed me these things. 9 Then saith he unto me, See thou do it not: for I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren the prophets, and of them which keep the sayings of this book: worship God.

Direct Orders Concerning This Revelation (v. 10)

Revelation 22:10—And he saith unto me, Seal not the sayings of the prophecy of this book: for the time is at hand.

"Seal not the sayings of The Prophecy of this book."

Dan 8:26 12:4,9 Daniel was told to seal up the book. John is told not to seal the book.

From the beginning John was directed to write what he saw and heard, and to make it known to the Churches. Rev 1:11, 19 Prophetical messages to each church. Rev 2:1, 8, 12, 18, 3:1, 7, 14.

"Seal up."

In Chapter 10 he was about to write. The Seven Thunders He was to seal this up -- But the rest he was not to Seal. He was to record them. He was to make them known. He was to publish them to the Churches. These things where written both by Command and Revelation of God.

See the stress, Urgency, Importance. This Book is very important to us.

The Effects of This Revelation (v. 11)

Revelation 22:11 He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still.

There are two schools of thought here --

One -- The idea of eternal fixedness of character. When these Revelations scenes have been fulfilled.

The other idea -- is the Effect of these Words -- or this Revelation.

The meaning of the text has immediate reference to the context -- to the now -- sealing- writing and publishing. For a better understanding read it --

Let the unjust one do injustice more and more and the filthy one defile more and more, and the righteous one do righteousness more and more."

II Tim 3:13 Heb 6:7-9

The same light of the Sun breeds pestilence in the marshland. Breeds life to all. It is an ill to the ill. Good to the Good.

The Rewards To All (vs. 12-19)

All Will be Rewarded

12 And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be. 13 I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last.

Without exception, all will receive their just reward.

The Reward of Entering God's City

Revelation 22:14 Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city. 15 For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.

Rewards of Blessing

16 I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star. 17 And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely. 18 For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: 19 And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.

To the wicked -

Degrees of Reward -- More tolerable for Sodom and Gomorrah

To the Righteous --

Degrees of Reward - Not Salvation but for works.

Wood -- hay -- stubble Gold- Silver -- Precious Stones.

The Benediction (vs. 20-21)

Revelation 22:20,21—He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly. Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus. 21 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.