Summary: This sermon shows the awful but necessary judgment upon the wicked, when the seven vials are poured out.
POURING OUT OF THE SEVEN VIALS
The climatic ending of the Revelation is taking place with God quickly dispensing His judgment and wrath on the Godless portion of a fallen creation. All wickedness and those who have been involved in sin are being punished. Notice that I said, “punished”. There will be no further opportunity for repentance. God is dealing now with His enemy, not as the Lord Jesus Christ, as He was referred to in the grace and church age, but as the Lord God Almighty. The swift judgment of God will be immediately poured out by the angels, one vial at a time. The commission to do such will come from the Lord God Almighty.
We will carefully analyze the way that each of these vials were dispensed and with the results of each being given. The pouring out of these vials also corresponds to the third woe as described in 11:14.
I. THE POURING OF THE FIRST VIAL RESULTED IN SORES. (Vv. 1, 2)
There is a comparison to be made while these plagues are taking place, to the plagues that happened in Egypt when Moses was asking Pharaoh to release the Israelites. During this time, God also inflicted plagues of boils (Exodus 9:8-12), waters turning to blood (Exodus 7:14-25), and darkness (Exodus 10:21-29).
Notice how the judgment of the boils fell upon the Israelites in Exodus 9:8-12:
And the LORD said unto Moses and unto Aaron, Take to you handfuls of ashes of the furnace, and let Moses sprinkle it toward the heaven in the sight of Pharaoh. And it shall become small dust in all the land of Egypt, and shall be a boil breaking forth [with] blains upon man, and upon beast, throughout all the land of Egypt. And they took ashes of the furnace, and stood before Pharaoh; and Moses sprinkled it up toward heaven; and it became a boil breaking forth [with] blains upon man, and upon beast. And the magicians could not stand before Moses because of the boils; for the boil was upon the magicians, and upon all the Egyptians. And the LORD hardened the heart of Pharaoh, and he hearkened not unto them; as the LORD had spoken unto Moses.
This was certainly a very grievous time in Egypt, but it was a time that eventually brought about a release of the Israelites. These plagues in Revelation, resulting from the pouring out of the seven vials, will not serve a similar purpose of bringing forth repentance as it did in Egypt, but will be only for the purpose of punishment.
A. The Judgment Came Suddenly Upon the Beast Worshipers. (Vv. 1-2a)
The Scriptures tell us that the angel “poured out his vial upon the earth; and there fell…” It does not take much imagination to realize how quickly this must have taken place. The very description of the vial being flattened out like a saucer indicates how quickly the wrath of God will be poured out.
Just as the Lord has the reputation of being patient and longsuffering in regards to providing us with grace, He will have the reputation of suddenly releasing His judgment upon His enemy. The world has the delusion of fabricating its own god as being a feminine, weak, and emaciated seventy pound creature. Such is not the case and will not be the case when He judges the earth during the Great Tribulation. This is also the way that many artists portray Christ on the cross. When Christ was on the earth during His incarnation, inside an earthly body, He undoubtedly was a fine specimen of the human frame. I believe that His body was very manly developed while growing up as a carpenter. As He carried His own cross, He demonstrated the stamina that He had to endure the cross. The Lord God Almighty will be a “consuming fire”.
B. The Judgment Caused Suffering to the Beast Worshipers. (V. 2b).
Had man not sinned there would be no suffering upon the earth or a need for hell. Sin changed all of that. The excruciating pain that we feel today when facing some serious physical malady had its awful beginnings in the Garden of Eden when Adam and Eve sinned. The pouring out of the first vial will result in terrible suffering. We must not forget that this suffering is deserved because of man refusing God’s grace. I must call attention to this, because there is the likelihood that someone will either hear or read what is being said in regards to tribulation and needs to be saved.
This vial that affects its victims with painful sores comes upon all of the followers of the beast. This parallels to the boils that were involved in the sixth plague on Egypt (Exodus 9:9-11).