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The Dragon and the Sea (Week 4)

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Faithfulness, Victory, Hope
Revelation 19:5–16 KJV 1900
And a voice came out of the throne, saying, Praise our God, all ye his servants, and ye that fear him, both small and great. And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying, Alleluia: for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth. 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. 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. 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. 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. 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. 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. And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God. And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean. 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. And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.
Jesus will be victorious as the One who is faithful and true.
Our ultimate hope can rest in the promise that God reigns and will reign.
This passage describes a great celebration of God’s victory, first by the songs of praise (vv. 5–8), then by depicting the wedding of the Lamb to his bride (vv. 7–9). The bride of Christ is the church, and a wedding represents the final joyous union of intimate relationship that Christ will have with his people, never to be separated again.
Alleluia
Allel: Praise
Uia: Jehovah
Praise ye Jehovah or Praise the Lord 19:7 marriage of the Lamb. Hebrew weddings consisted of 3 phases: 1) betrothal (often when the couple were children); 2) presentation (the festivities, often lasting several days, that preceded the ceremony); and 3) the ceremony (the exchanging of vows). The church was betrothed to Christ by His sovereign choice in eternity past
Ephesians 1:4 KJV 1900
According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:
Hebrews 13:20 KJV 1900
Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant,
) and will be presented to Him at the Rapture (; ). The final supper will signify the end of the ceremony. This symbolic meal will take place at the establishment of the millennial kingdom and last throughout that 1,000 year period (cf. 21:2). While the term “bride” often refers to the church, and does so here (; ), it ultimately expands to include all the redeemed of all ages, which becomes clear in the remainder of the book.
and will be presented to Him at the Rapture (; ). The final supper will signify the end of the ceremony. This symbolic meal will take place at the establishment of the millennial kingdom and last throughout that 1,000 year period (cf. 21:2). While the term “bride” often refers to the church, and does so here (; ), it ultimately expands to include all the redeemed of all ages, which becomes clear in the remainder of the book.
and will be presented to Him at the Rapture (; ). The final supper will signify the end of the ceremony. This symbolic meal will take place at the establishment of the millennial kingdom and last throughout that 1,000 year period (cf. 21:2). While the term “bride” often refers to the church, and does so here (; ), it ultimately expands to include all the redeemed of all ages, which becomes clear in the remainder of the book.
Weddings are preceded by a lot of preparation and anticipation by the bride and groom. No matter how stressful all the details of preparation might have been, when the wedding day comes, it is all worth it. In the same way, we can remain faithful through the pain of living in a broken world when we set our sight on that wonderful day when we will be united with Christ without separation or sin.
In verse 10 the angel tells John to worship God rather than place his focus on God’s messengers. Worship has a way of stirring up hope in our hearts. As we sing, we are declaring that God’s Word is true, God’s character is trustworthy, and God’s victory is coming.
19:10 fell at his feet. Overwhelmed by the grandeur of the vision, John collapsed in worship before the angel (cf. 1:17; 22:8). do not do that. Cf. 22:8, 9. The Bible forbids the worship of angels (, ). the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy. The central theme of both OT prophecy and NT preaching is the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Ivan Moiseyev was a teenager who entered into the USSR military in 1970 only to be severely persecuted for his Christian faith. He was forced by his officers to stand, barely clothed in the winter weather at night, for hours at a time: “For the next twelve nights, Ivan continued to stand in the street outside his barracks. Miraculously, he did not freeze, nor did he beg for mercy. Ivan continued to speak about his faith to his comrades and officers. He sang about the glory of Jesus Christ in his barracks, though this was strictly prohibited. To those who threatened him, he replied, ‘A lark threatened with death for singing would still continue to sing. She cannot renounce her nature. Neither can we Christians.’ Soldiers around him were converted, impressed by his ardent faith. His commanders continued to interrogate him, trying to get him to deny Jesus. They put him in refrigerated cells. They clothed him in a special rubber suit, into which they pumped air until his chest was so compressed he scarcely could breathe. At the age of 20, Ivan knew that the Communists would kill him. On July 11, 1972, he wrote to his parents, ‘You will not see me anymore.’ He then described a vision of angels and heaven which God had sent to strengthen him for the last trial. A few days later, his body was returned to his family”. Just as Ivan’s worship strengthened his faithful resolve to trust God and serve him only, so also our worship will please God and strengthen not only our own hearts but the hearts of those around us.
John’s description of Jesus coming in victorious procession on his white horse is both endearing and frightening. He is finally recognized by all the earth as the One called “Faithful and True,” the Son of God (v. 11), and he has not just one but “many crowns” indicating his favor and rule (v. 12). Yet, his eyes are like fire and his robe is drenched in the blood of his enemies (vv. 12–13). His strength is both awe inspiring and sobering as his armies follow him (v. 14), with his weapon of war being the sword out of his mouth (v. 15). His name is written on his thigh: “KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS” (v. 16).
19:11 heaven opened. The One who ascended to heaven () and had been seated at the Father’s right hand (; ; ) will return to take back the earth from the usurper and establish His kingdom (5:1–10). The nature of this event shows how it differs from the Rapture. At the Rapture, Christ meets His own in the air—in this event He comes with them to earth. At the Rapture, there is no judgment, in this event it is all judgment. This event is preceded by blackness—the darkened sun, moon gone out, stars fallen, smoke—then lightning and blinding glory as Jesus comes. Such details are not included in Rapture passages (; ). white horse.In the Roman triumphal processions, the victorious general rode his white war horse up the Via Sacra to the temple of Jupiter on the Capitoline Hill. Jesus’ first coming was in humiliation on a colt (). John’s vision portrays Him as the conqueror on His war horse, coming to destroy the wicked, to overthrow the Antichrist, to defeat Satan, and to take control of the earth (cf. ). Faithful and True. True to His word, Jesus will return to earth (; see note on 3:14). in righteousness He judges. See 20:11–15; cf. .; ; . makes war. This startling statement, appearing only here and 2:16, vividly portrays the holy wrath of God against sinners (cf. ). God’s patience will be exhausted with sinful, rebellious mankind.
19:12 His eyes were like a flame of fire. Nothing escapes His penetrating vision, so His judgments are always just and accurate (see note on 1:14). a name…no one knew. John could see the name, but was unable to comprehend it (cf. ). There are unfathomable mysteries in the Godhead that even glorified saints will be unable to grasp.
The Word. Only John uses this title for the Lord (see Introduction: Author and Date). As the Word of God, Jesus is the image of the invisible God (); the express image of His person (); and the final, full revelation from God (, ).
19:14 armies in heaven. Composed of the church (v. 8), tribulation saints (7:13), OT believers (; cf. , ), and even angels (). They return not to help Jesus in the battle (they are unarmed), but to reign with Him after He defeats His enemies (20:4; ; ). Cf. .
19:15 sharp sword. This symbolizes Christ’s power to kill His enemies (1:16; cf. ; , ). That the sword comes out of His mouth indicates that He wins the battle with the power of His word. Though the saints return with Christ to reign and rule, they are not the executioners. That is His task, and that of His angels (). rod of iron. Swift, righteous judgment will mark Christ’s rule in the kingdom. Believers will share His authority (2:26; ; see notes on 2:27; 12:5; ). winepress. A vivid symbol of judgment (see note on 14:19). Cf. ; .
19:16 on His thigh. Jesus will wear a banner across His robe and down His thigh with a title emblazoned on it that emphasizes His absolute sovereignty over all human rulers (see note on 17:14).
As believers, we look forward to heaven and to the end, when God finally gets his victory over all evil. Yet we must remain faithful until that end is realized. Revelation encourages us that a crown of life is a reward for being faithful until the very end
). This crown is a reward and should not be confused with salvation itself. Salvation depends on an authentic belief in Christ as God’s Son who died for our sins and rose again. “Heaven and the receiving of a reward are not the same thing. All who are saved will have a home in heaven, but the reward is separate—in addition to the promise of heaven. This reward, sometimes called ‘prize,’ ‘crown,’ or ‘inheritance,’ is promised to every believer, but the promise is conditional. This is why not all who are saved automatically receive a reward. Paul posed the sad possibility of a person truly saved, but who would ‘suffer loss,’ namely, the loss of reward that he or she might have received (),”
Revelation 2:10 KJV 1900
Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.
This crown is a reward and should not be confused with salvation itself. Salvation depends on an authentic belief in Christ as God’s Son who died for our sins and rose again. “Heaven and the receiving of a reward are not the same thing. All who are saved will have a home in heaven, but the reward is separate—in addition to the promise of heaven. This reward, sometimes called ‘prize,’ ‘crown,’ or ‘inheritance,’ is promised to every believer, but the promise is conditional. This is why not all who are saved automatically receive a reward. Paul posed the sad possibility of a person truly saved, but who would ‘suffer loss,’ namely, the loss of reward that he or she might have received
1 Corinthians 3:15 KJV 1900
If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.
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