1. Last week we saw how Satan tries to establish his kingdom on earth through the two beasts. And how these represent political powers and false religions throughout the present period between Christ’s two comings. We saw how their power will intensify so greatly near the end time that the saints will not even be able to buy or sell goods. The picture was not a hopeful one. It is a picture we often see when we look at the world. The wicked seem to reign and Satan seems to be getting his own way.
2. But today we see a different, more hopeful scene. After John sees the visions of chapter 13, he sees the Lamb standing on Mount Zion.
3. John sees this scene after he sees the scenes of ch. 13. But we are not told that this scene takes place after the ones we just read about. It does not say "then the Lamb appeared." The Lamb has been standing on Mount Zion all this time. In fact He has been standing there throughout the same period as the beasts have seemed to rule. From an earthly point of view, Satan often seems to rule. Is that not why evil abounds and we ourselves at times fall into sin? Is that not why God’s name is denied? It may seem so, but there is a truth that we can only see from a heavenly point of view.
4. The psalmist knew this truth in Psalm 2:
Psa 2:1 Why do the nations conspire and the peoples plot in vain? 2 The kings of the earth take their stand and the rulers gather together against the LORD and against his Anointed One. 3 "Let us break their chains," they say, "and throw off their fetters." 4 The One enthroned in heaven laughs; the Lord scoffs at them. 5 Then he rebukes them in his anger and terrifies them in his wrath, saying, 6 "I have installed my King on Zion, my holy hill." 7 I will proclaim the decree of the LORD: He said to me, "You are my Son ; today I have become your Father. 8 Ask of me, and I will make the nations your inheritance, the ends of the earth your possession. 9 You will rule them with an iron scepter ; you will dash them to pieces like pottery."
5. The one in heaven laughs at them for thinking they rule the earth. For in reality the Lamb rules from Mt Zion. Not a physical location but heaven itself. The Lamb is Christ Himself who attained His rule through His death and resurrection and ascension.
6. And He is not alone. He is with the 144,000, which as we have seen before represents all the saints of all time.
7. His stance and the roar of the waters and the thunder display majesty and power and authority. He is the protector of His children.
8. And John heard anew song. This song came from heaven. The song of the church triumphant. Celebrating that salvation was already their’s. And this song is only learned by those who have been redeemed.
9. Does this mean that the rapture has already taken place? Probably not, but that as the 144,000 are redeemed, they know the joy of victory.
10. Rev. 14:4 describes the 144,000 further:
Rev 14:4 These are those who did not defile themselves with women, for they kept themselves pure.
What does this mean? Does this mean that the 144,00 are just men and that they are all virgins? No, for we must remember that adultery in scripture is often used to describe spiritual unfaithfulness. That is why Israel was compared to an adulterer. She had not remained faithful to God. This simply means those who had not defiled themselves with the worship of the beast. They remained true to God.
11. After this John sees three angels.
12. The first angel proclaims the eternal gospel. What this means is debatable. Some think it is not the gospel of Christ, some not. I’m not sure which it is, no one is. But what is important is the message he gives to every nation tribe, language and people.
Rev 14:7 He said in a loud voice, "Fear God and give him glory, because the hour of his judgment has come. Worship him who made the heavens, the earth, the sea and the springs of water."
This is a demand or command to all people. And also an announcement of judgement. This is bad news for the wicked but good news for the people of God.
13. A second angel is heard:
"Fallen! Fallen is Babylon the Great, which made all the nations drink the maddening wine of her adulteries."
Babylon refers to the entire power of the antichrist. We know how wicked Babylon was in the Old Testament. Babylon is at the heart of the antichristian kingdom as Jerusalem was the heart of Israel. Through its false prophet this kingdom enticed the nations to drink the wine of her adulteries. To sin and follow its worship of the beast. But Babylon is about to fall. This is good news for the people of God who had been persecuted by her.