Summary: Today's message is from Revelation chapter 10 about God's message being both sweet and sour. We'll look at the prophecy in Ezekiel 3 as well.
The Book of Revelation
“God’s Sweet and Sour Message”
As I look back over this last century, I’ve seen a horrible plague sweeping across the land, but it isn’t really a new plague, rather it’s one that’s been around for a long time. It’s unreliable and false messengers with unreliable and false messages.
It stared with Satan’s message to Eve. In essence he said, “You don’t have to be yourself, you don’t have to be what God has made you to be. You can be someone else. In fact, you can be just like God. You can be your own bosses, determining for yourself what is right and wrong for you own life.”
And so you had a false messenger given to humanity, a message they wanted to hear, in that while God said ‘no,’ Satan gave them permission to do what they’ve always wanted. And this false message brought not only physical death, but spiritual death as well.
Unfortunately this same message is still being propagated today. It’s the message of new age humanism taught by the celebrity and political cult of our day, and that is you don’t have to listen to the Bible nor follow its dictates, instead you can believe whatever is right and true for you.
During the days of the kings, Ahab, the most wicked of all the kings, listened to false prophets who told him whatever he wanted to hear, that he would be successful, but then Micah, a true prophet, came with a hard message, and he was mocked and imprisoned.
We see a similar story with the prophet Jeremiah who continued to give warnings about the coming of God’s judgments, and he was imprisoned for his words.
And our leaders no different today when men and women of God come against the message of peace and tolerance they perpetrate. These men and women of God are mocked, lose their jobs and businesses, and are even dragged into court.
But these false and unreliable messengers are also found within the church, preaching messages of social relevance, messages of health and wealth, messages of how to have happy lives and families. They’re messengers with nothing but happy, happy talk.
What’s really sad is that these are just the sorts of messages most Christians want to hear, just like the people in Jeremiah’s time. They didn’t want to hear the hard messages, but rather those that spoke of victory and happy times ahead.
The Apostle Paul seems to nail this on the head. He said,
“For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables.” (2 Timothy 4:3-4 NKJV)
But here in the next two chapters of Revelation we have great messengers with great messages. The question is whether or not the people will listen, or better yet, will we?
Today we’re going to look at a mighty angel and the heart of his message, and then at the Lord’s re-commissioning of the Apostle John.
Read Revelation 10
Turn to Ezekiel 3
Some say this angel is Jesus Christ because of the many similarities to the appearance found in Revelation 1; clothed in a cloud, his face is like the sun and feet like pillars of fire, a rainbow is about his head, and he roars like a lion.
The difficulty, however, is that Jesus is never referred to as an angel in the book of Revelation. Further John describes him as ‘another’ mighty angel. The Greek word for ‘another’ means someone of the same kind, hence this angel is not unique, and can’t be Jesus. Further the oath the angel swears is to the Creator God, which would likewise negate this being Jesus, because He is the Creator, so He would be swearing to Himself.
It’s probably best to think of him as being another really big and powerful angel. But when we get so tied up as to whom the messenger is we miss the point, because it’s not about the messenger but the message, a message so great that only the mightiest messenger can deliver it.
In the messenger’s hand was a ‘little book.’ The contents of this book have been greatly disputed. Some point to it as none other than the seven-sealed scroll, God’s last will and testament concerning His creation, but the only way this can be the seven-sealed scroll is that if the angel is none other than Jesus.
But to give John this scroll isn’t likely, because John eating the seven-sealed scroll is improbable, and that’s because it’s last seal hasn’t yet been opened, which contains the seven bowl or vial judgments. Further, there’s nothing small about the seven-sealed scroll.