Summary: So now the 7th trumpet blasts forth its judgments. And the judgments come fast and furious. Why? Because they are the very last judgments. God has decided to end human history.
We are going to start tonight with a little review to bring us up to date. The number seven continues to pop up throughout this book. There were the seven churches. Then we studied the seven seals. Then the seven trumpet judgments. But when the seventh trumpet blasted, an amazing thing happened. There was no blast of judgment, not immediately. Instead an over-all picture of the end time was blown forth.
- There was a picture of Israel being chosen as the nation through which God would send His Son into the world, the picture of Jesus Christ coming to the earth as the Savior of the world. (REV. 12:10-12)
- There was the picture of the dragon, that ancient serpent, who we call the devil or Satan. He is working to get men to be ungodly and evil all because he wants to cut and hurt the heart of God. ( First part of REV. 13)
- There was the picture of the antichrist and of his right hand man coming on the earth, the picture of how they will gain power over the whole earth and launch the worst holocaust the world has ever seen. (Latter part of Rev. 13)
- There was the glorious picture of the very end of the world when Jesus Christ triumphs over all the ungodly and evil of this world, the picture of Jesus harvesting the earth, of His taking believers to heaven with Him and judging unbelievers. (REV. 14)
So now the 7th trumpet blasts forth its judgments. And the judgments come fast and furious. Why? Because they are the very last judgments. God has decided to end human history.
Jesus Christ will destroy all the ungodly and evil of this world and do it quickly. Remember, the whole tribulation period will last seven years. It will be divided into two periods: the first period will be three and ½ years and is called the beginning of birth pains or the beginning of sorrows. The last period will also be 3 ½ years and is called the great tribulation.
- When the tribulation begins, during the first 3 ½ years, there will be 7 seal judgments that will take place upon earth.
- When the great tribulation itself begins, the final 3 ½ years, there will be 7 trumpet judgments that will take place upon earth.
- Then, at the very end of the tribulation period, there will be 7 more judgments, the 7 bowl judgments. The bowl judgments will end human history as we know it.
So tonight’s passage deals with the heavenly preparation for judgment. This is the preparation that will be made for the launch of the judgments that will end all the ungodliness and evil of man upon earth. PRAYER
Read verse 1. We see the sign of God’s judgment in heaven. This sign is said to be great and awesome, a sign of 7 mighty angels prepared to go forth for God, a sign of 7 plagues that are said to be the last plagues, a sign of God’s wrath.
This sign is intended to stir people to bow before God who is just. God is ready to clean up the earth so man must prepare, repent and get ready before it’s too late. READ 2-4.
In these verses we see the reason for the judgment. Believers will be slaughtered by the beast or antichrist. This explains why the wrath of God is going to fall upon the earth in the last days. The antichrist launches the worst holocaust the world has ever seen. Millions of believers will be slaughtered during his rule on earth. These verses show these believers in heaven. Note four things about them:
1. The martyred believers will be on the sea of glass that stretches out before the throne of God itself. You might remember talking about this glassy sea in Rev. 4:6. The glass is mingled with fire. This symbolizes
- the fire of persecution these believers went through.
- The first judgment that is about to fall on the ungodly and evil of the earth.
2. The martyred believers will be victorious over the antichrist. They
- Won’t worship his image
- Won’t receive his mark.
- Won’t receive the number of his name, the number of 666.
True believers in the end time will not follow the antichrist. They will refuse to worship the state and its leader. So the leader and his government will prosecute and kill the believers. Remember, too, that this holocaust will not be localized. It will be world-wide.
3. The martyred believers will have harps. The harps are symbols of being soothed and given rest and of praising and worshiping God. God will soothe the hurt and pain of the martyred believers and give them rest, and they will praise and worship Him.