Summary: This sermon is about worship. It describes judgment of God; the song of Moses; and the song of the Lamb in Revelation 15:1-3.
Scripture Text: Revelation 15
One of the greatest facts of worship; is that we congregate together here to come into te presence of God. As Christians, we know that God is with us continually through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. But, we come here so that we can not only edify each other; but so that we can dedicate a set aside time to God. Tyndale’s Concise Bible Commentary says that, “Being in the very presence of God is the goal for the exhortations to be “victorious” throughout the book.” In other words, the very reason we worship is to experience God’s presence. I am reminded of Moses; who pleaded with God to show him His glory. It was more than Moses could have ever expected. “The Hebrew word for glory, kabowd, denotes that which surrounds the throne of God the King, plus everything that makes up the Almighty-- his Majesty, his integrity-- indeed, the very power of God. It's more than any human can take (Vernon Whaley, Called to Worship).” But because God's desire is to reveal himself to those who love and worship Him,” God said, “I Myself will make all My goodness pass before you, and will proclaim the name of the Lord before you; and I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show compassion on whom I will show compassion.” But He also said, “You cannot see My face, for no man can see Me and live!” Then the Lord said, “Behold, there is a place by Me, and you shall stand there on the rock; and it will come about, while My glory is passing by, that I will put you in the cleft of the rock and cover you with My hand until I have passed by. “Then I will take My hand away and you shall see My back, but My face shall not be seen.”" (Exodus 33:19-23, NASB95)
How much do you desire to worship Him? Do you plead for His presence in your life?
(Briefly exposite verse 2). In verse 2, of Revelation 15; we find that the victorious ones that stand up for Jesus are worshiping and singing. The earthly tabernacle that the Israelites worshiped in was only a pattern of “God’s Tabernacle” in heaven.
Revelation 1 says, “Then I saw another sign in heaven, great and marvelous, seven angels who had seven plagues, which are the last, because in them the wrath of God is finished.” Here we find the remaining judgments of God upon the earth. In Revelation 15:5–8 the temple is opened, the four living creatures again appear (cf. 4:6), and the temple becomes unapproachable in God’s judgment glory (cf. Isa. 66:6). Did you know that “Judgment is an expression of God’s righteous character (15:4; 16:7; 19:2).”
How many feel good about God's judgment? Southern Baptist preachers are known to preach ‘fire and brimstone,’ condemning their congregations by the very words of God. But are our feelings about being judged enough reason not to talk about the stark contrasts that we find between ourselves and a holy God?
Revelation 15:4 shows that judgment is an expression of God’s character when it says, “Who will not fear, O Lord, and glorify Your name? For You alone are holy (NASB).” So if God is the only Holy One, would it not stand to reason that everything or everyone is in stark contrast to that holiness?
“God’s anger was seen to be not a passion, but a principle—the eternal hatred of wrong, which corresponds with the eternal love of right, and which is only another aspect of love. The magnetic needle swings on its delicate axis; it attracts at one end; it repels at the other.—A. T. Pierson* ”
Whenever we even approach God in worship, we are confronted with the stark reality of His holiness; and our utter helplessness to overcome our sinfulness! In Revelation 16:7, we are reminded that God’s judgments are “true and righteous” Why do we find God's judgment in Revelation? One of the reasons is simply, the existence of his character. But as we shall soon understand; that is to the advantage of the one who worships Him.
When we contemplate the Revelation; it includes not only the consummation of all things; but an understanding of judgment and ultimate victory. The first thing that we find in Revelation 15 is a hint of final judgment. In fact, Revelation 15 “evokes images from the Exodus: the plagues, the sea, the song of Moses, the tabernacle of testimony, and smoke (Tyndale’s Concise Commentary).” Secondly, we find victory in the past experiences of God’s people through the ‘song of Moses.’ And thirdly, we find the ultimate victory realized in Jesus. This whole revelation is about Jesus; the worthy lamb, the roaring lion... God Almighty!