Today, I will introduce you to Revelation 14:1-13. I say "introduce" because the 14th chapter of Revelation is filled with fascinating information about the end-times. Our text begins with a vision of the victorious Christ and ends with the eternal blessedness of the believers who align with Him. In between the final gospel call goes forth, and the city of Babylon falls, and evil people are judged. I will summarize the story in this message.
One, the vision of the victorious Lamb gives us great comfort!
In 14:1-5 John sees a vision of the victorious Lamb of God on Mount Zion. Mount Zion at Jerusalem will be the capital of Christ's millennial kingdom. Given the testing of the times, this is a wonderfully comforting passage. We can rejoice in the fact that we serve the conquering King as well as the suffering Servant. Christ died for our salvation. He was raised in glory. And He will return to reign over the universe. Moreover, we will reign with Him!
Two, an angel gives the final call to turn to God. Let everyone turn to Him now!
After seeing the vision of the victorious Lamb, John is brought back to the preaching of the gospel on earth. An angel will fly in midheaven proclaiming the gospel to every tribe, tongue, nation, and people. Even during the Tribulation, God will be seeking out those who will respond to His call. Through this global proclamation, the world appears to receive its final call to repent and e saved. There is no record of any additional proclamation.
Other than speaking about the angel flying, John does not say how the angel makes the proclamation. Could it be that the angel will use radio, television, or the Internet to deliver the message? Perhaps he will use all of these methods and more. We do not know, but we do know that the message will be delivered. As for right now, let us all turn to God. No one should wait for the Tribulation to repent and turn to God. The hour of opportunity is right now! Now is the hour of salvation.
Three, Bablylon will be judged! We can rejoice in the defeat of all evil.
Now, the second angel appears and announces the fall of Babylon the Great. Very likely, this second angel was flying in mid-heaven like the first angel. This city is described as a great whore.
Christ will judge Babylon and conquer all evil. The destruction of Babylon makes room for the rule and reign of Christ during the 1000 years of the Millennium. He will reign throughout eternity as well! Let us rejoice! Let us live with confidence!
Four, an angel preaches judgment. We must believe in Christ and avoid judgment.
The third angel pronounces judgment upon those who worship the beast. These comments are directed both to those who have not ever repented and to apostate Christians who have turned away from God. All of us must heed the angel's pronouncement. We serve God because we love Him, but we also avoid eternal death and damnation.
Five, the Spirit proclaims the blessedness of the saints! Along with all other saints, we will be blessed!
Three angels have spoken. This time, the Holy Spirit speaks about the suffering saints. John writes: "Yes," says the Spirit, "so that they may rest from their labors, for their deeds follow with them." The saints who die in the Lord will rest from their labors. They will be rewarded for their great deeds. Some will face martyrdom; others will need to go into hiding; many will suffer. But God will reward all who do not worship the beast.
Our text is a riveting portrayal of the victory of Christ, the final global call to salvation, the defeat of Babylon, the judgment of those who worship the beast, and the blessedness of all who remain faithful to Christ. Today, as we serve Christ, we can rejoice that all things are in His hands, that victory is on the way, and that even now we enjoy a great measure of that victory.