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The Revelation Of Jesus Christ: “they are virgins”

SIH TOTT ICONRev 14:4 KJV – “These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb.”

 

The purity of God’s people is described using the symbolic phrase “for they are virgins”.  This is a wonderful description of the people of God  who are now in heaven.  These believers who have gone on before us, are pure in the sight of the Lord in two different ways…

  1. First, they are pure (sinless) based upon the blood of Christ which has cleansed them from all their sins that they have committed….

1Jn 1:7 KJV – “…and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.”

Based upon Christ’s shedding of blood in His death on the cross that God the Father no longer sees us as sinners but we are now looked upon as reconciled in Christ.

Col 1:21-22 KJV – “And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath he reconciled in the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and unblameable and unreproveable in his sight:”

 

  1. But secondly, based upon their physical death, these beloved of the Lord have left their sinful flesh behind (in the grave) and now their spirits stand in sinless perfection before the Lord.

Both Paul and Peter affirm that at death we leave our bodies behind as we enter into the presence of God…

2Co 5:6 KJV – “Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord:”

2Pe 1:14-15 KJV – “Knowing that shortly I must put off this my tabernacle, even as our Lord Jesus Christ hath shewed me.  Moreover I will endeavour that ye may be able after my decease to have these things always in remembrance.”

This is why our spiritual brethren, who have gone to heaven are said to be “virgins” (pure, sinless) as they stand before the throne.  This stands in direct opposition to those who are looked upon as spiritual “adulterers” which symbolically describes those who are unfaithful to the Lord by turning our affections from Him to the fallen world and all its sinful pleasures..…

Jas 4:4 KJV – “Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.”

 

May we all be pure virgins in the sight of our Lord and Savior, having His blood covering our sins and remaining faithful to Him while on earth as we wait to be with Him at our death!

For an in depth look at these sections of the Revelation:

http://wp.me/pU88A-47o

Do We Worship The Lord Based Upon Our Experiences With Him?

SIHs HALTAL ICON RevChristRev 14:3 KJV – “And they sung as it were a new song before the throne, and before the four beasts, and the elders: and no man could learn that song but the hundred and forty and four thousand, which were redeemed from the earth.”

 

 

For the SIH devotional on this subject:

http://wp.me/pU88A-47E

 

The Revelation Of Jesus Christ: “No Man Could Learn That Song ”

SIH TOTT ICONRev 14:3 KJV – “And they sung as it were a new song before the throne, and before the four beasts, and the elders: and no man could learn that song but the hundred and forty and four thousand, which were redeemed from the earth.”

 

 

In John’s vision, he hears a song of praise being sung by the 144,000 (the saints in heaven).  As they sing this song, John tells us that “no man could learn this song” with the exception of the people of God.

To better understand this passage, we need to remember the true nature of praise and worship.  Folks, when each of us praise and honor our Lord, much of it is based upon our personal experiences with Him.   Moses understood this truth when he linked the Israelites praise to the Lord with His wondrous works on their behalf…

Deu 10:21 KJV – “He is thy praise, and he is thy God, that hath done for thee these great and terrible things, which thine eyes have seen.”

 

Although we can learn about the Lord from His Word, we gain a much greater understanding of Him when we experience Him in our personal lives.   This is why we are told that… 

Psa 25:14 KJV – “The secret of the LORD is with them that fear him; and he will shew them his covenant.”

Through life experiences, we have learned to reverence the person and workings of the Lord.  During this process, we have come to an understanding of many truths about the Lord that remain a secret to others.   Also, as He keeps His promises that He has given to us, He is revealing to us His covenant.  This, in turn, results in our greater experiential knowledge of His gracious workings on our behalf.

This experiential knowledge of the Lord and His workings results in the enriched praise and worship of Him.

 

This is why only those who have been saved by His grace, and now in heaven with Him, can learn this wonderful song of the redeemed that is sung in John’s vision.  Unless we experience both His salvation, and his gracious acceptance of us into His sinless presence in heaven, we can never really experience this level of worship and praise of Christ.   This song will be a secret to us until we enter into heaven with Him at our death.

Based upon our differing personal experiences in our walk with Christ, each one of us has a very unique song of praise that we can offer to our Lord.  May we all live our lives seeking to sing this song of praise to Him who has done so very much for us!  If we do not sing our song, it will go unheard by those around us…  remember no one can sing our sing for us!

For an in depth look at these sections of the Revelation:

http://wp.me/pU88A-47o

The Glorious Mt Zion… Home Of The King Of Kings!

SIH TOTT ICONRev 14:1 KJV – “And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Sion, and with him an hundred forty and four thousand, having his Father’s name written in their foreheads.”

 

 

 

For the SIH devotional on this subject:

http://wp.me/pU88A-47w

The Revelation Of Jesus Christ: “Lamb Stood On Mt Sion”

SIH TOTT ICONRev 14:1 KJV – “And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Sion, and with him an hundred forty and four thousand, having his Father’s name written in their foreheads.”

 

 

What a glorious site that John is seeing in this vision…. Christ standing in heaven (symbolized by Mt Zion) in the midst of His people. How can we know that Mt Zion is this vision is a symbol of heaven, the dwelling place of God Himself?

 

There are two main uses of this title in the Bible…

First of all, Zion is a description of the earthly city of Jerusalem. This is the capital of Israel, the seat of the kingdoms of David and Solomon, and most importantly the home of the temple where the true worship of Jehovah took place. Zion is the place where God met with man and man worshipped God.

 

 

Secondly, Zion is a title given to the spiritual city of the Heavenly, New Jerusalem…

Heb 12:22 KJV – “But ye are come unto mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels”

What a wonderful thought. Our heavenly home, Mt Zion or New Jerusalem is where our Lord will meet with us (in perfect communion) and we will worship Him (in sinless perfection)! What a blessing that will be to live with Christ in the New Jerusalem on the New Earth for an eternity! This is what John sees in his vision… Christ standing in heaven among His chosen people!

 

When we understand these truths about Mt Zion, we begin to see the relationship between the communion and worship of the temporal and eternal Mt Zions. The Mt Zion on earth is simply a faint reminder to us of the wondrous, eternal, relationship that we will enjoy with our Lord upon the future Mt Zion on the New Earth.

But how can this take place? How can we be so blessed that, although we are sinful, fallen beings we can look forward to a perfect eternity with Christ? We have that answer given to us in 1 Peter 2:6…

“Wherefore also it is contained in the scripture, Behold, I lay in Sion a chief corner stone, elect, precious: and he that believeth on him shall not be confounded.”

The wonderful eternal blessing of Mt Zion (heaven) is brought to us through Christ and His work on the cross. This is why Christ is described in this verse as the “cornerstone” of Zion. In other words, all the blessings that heaven holds for the people of God are built upon the person and work of Christ. Without Christ, the blessings of heaven cannot exist because He is the basis of them all.

May we all serve Him with renewed strength and love, as we remember His great work on our behalf which gives us access to a glorious, eternal future with Him in the New Jerusalem, Mt Zion, Heaven come down to earth!

 

For an in depth look at these sections of the Revelation:
http://wp.me/pU88A-47o

What Is “666”… A Computer Chip? A Tatoo? A Bar Code? Or Something Else?

SIHs HALTAL ICON RevChristRev 13:18 KJV – Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six.

 

 

For the SIH devotional on this subject:

http://wp.me/pU88A-47i

The Revelation Of Jesus Christ: “it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six.”

SIH TOTT ICONRev 13:18 KJV

Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six.

 

The mark of the beast consists of the number 666 and is described as the number of a man.  These two descriptions are simply teaching us the same truth in two differing ways.  This is because the number 666 is the number that represents mankind:

  1. Man was made on the sixth day
  2. Man falls short of perfection (7 is the number of perfection)
  3. Man was consigned to 6 days of labor (day 7 was the day assigned to rest and worship)
  4. Man, due to their fallen nature, stands opposed to the Lord and His people (Goliath is the perfect illustration of this principle – notice the repeated usage of “6” in the description of Goliath the enemy of God and His people in 1 Sam 17:1-7)

Alongside this principle of 6 being a number that is associated with the sinfulness and opposition of lost mankind to the Lord and His people, please notice that “666” stands in stark contrast to “777”.    777 is the perfect number listed three times which denotes a perfect Triune God (The Father, The Son and The Spirit).   Therefore 666 seems to indicate an imperfect, rebellious false triune god… (Satan, the beast of the sea, the beast of the earth)

666, as the number of man, teaches us that humanism is the core philosophy of Satan, the beasts and lost mankind.  What is humanism?  It is the exaltation of man.  It is saying that man should be the center of our attention, interest and devotion.  Basically, it is giving to man the honor that is due to God alone.  In that sense, humanism is making man equal to, or surpassing God Himself.

 

Humanism seeks followers by exalting man, using man’s pride and arrogance to appeal to the lusts of lost mankind attracting them to become followers.  Within the lost community humanism runs rampant affecting every aspect of life…

  1. Beliefs that mankind can somehow remove the guilt, shame and punishment of sin through a religious reformation, human psychological methods, censoring of the truths Of God’s Word, or even religious genocide can be seen all around us.
  2. The literal worship of other men can easily be seen in the cult following of political, entertainment, and even religious figures of our day.
  3. The praising of men works and achievements with absolutely no acknowledgement to the God that has given these men their abilities. Without God they could never have begun to achieve such great accomplishments.
  4. Looking to men to solve all of the problems of this world is lost mankind’s replacement to looking to their God as the only One truly able to resolve these issues.

These are just a few of the ways humanism can be seen in our society today.

 

As we see all of these attitudes in the world around us, may we always, as Christians, be on guard to not allow the humanist influences of the world enter our lives.  May we always remember that “…For in him we live, and move, and have our being…” (Act 17:27-29), and ALWAYS give to the Lord the honor and glory that he deserves!

For an in depth look at these sections of the Revelation:

http://wp.me/pU88A-46S

Revelation 14:1-5 “The Song Of The 144,000”

SIH STSTA ICONTHE TEXT:

Rev 14:1-5 KJV

(1)  And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Sion, and with him an hundred forty and four thousand, having his Father’s name written in their foreheads.

(2)  And I heard a voice from heaven, as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of a great thunder: and I heard the voice of harpers harping with their harps:

(3)  And they sung as it were a new song before the throne, and before the four beasts, and the elders: and no man could learn that song but the hundred and forty and four thousand, which were redeemed from the earth.

(4)  These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb.

(5)  And in their mouth was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God.

 

THE INTRODUCTION:

After looking at Satan and his earthly kingdoms and their opposition to Christ and His spiritual kingdom (Rev 12: & 13:), we now begin a new vision.  Our review of Satan’s kingdoms on earth has been brought to completion now we look at the very next event that will take place in time… the second coming of Christ.

In this look at His second coming, we will see Christ being praised for the redemption of His people; the protection of His people; and His wrath that will destroy the kingdoms of Satan…

  1. The Redeemed of God singing a song of praise to their Redeemer, the Lamb (14:1-5)
  2. The Messages Of The Three Angels (14:6-13)
  3. The Two Reapings Of The Earth (14:14-20)

 

 

 

THE EXPOSITORY STUDY: 

Rev 14:1-5 KJV 

(1)  And I looked, and, lo,

Following a review of Satan’s kingdoms on earth, John now begins to see a new vision.   This vision shows us events that take place at the final hours of Satan’s kingdoms on earth.  The first part of this vision takes place immediately prior to Christ’s second coming…

 

a Lamb stood on the mount Sion,

John sees Christ standing on “Mount Sion”.  This Mount Sion is located in heaven, the dwelling place of God and the angels (Hebs 12:22).

The symbolism for this part of John’s vision comes from Psa 48:1-3, Joel 2:32.  In these passages Mt Sion is presented as the dwelling place of God and the place of refuge for His people.  Likewise, Mt Sion (heaven) in this vision is the dwelling place of God and the refuge of God’s people for an eternity.

Here, Christ is seen standing in heaven (symbolized by Mt Sion) waiting to descend and deliver His people at His second coming.

 

and with him an hundred forty and four thousand, having his Father’s name written in their foreheads.

John sees the 144,000 symbolizing the people of God who have died prior to His second coming, whose spirits are now in heaven.  Their presence in heaven is the mark of their ownership by God and their membership in the eternal kingdom of God.  Their sin’s punishment has been paid by Christ’s shed blood and they are eternally secure in Him.  They are His redeemed whose spirits are in heaven, eagerly awaiting the resurrection of their body and living an eternity with Him beginning with His second coming.

What a comparison to the “The mark of the beast” from chapter 13 is the identifying mark of the people of Satan and his kingdom. What a contrast we see in these two marks.  “The mark of the beast” is the mark of Satanic ownership and influence, membership in the kingdoms of Satan and the coming judgment that awaits them.

 

(2)  And I heard a voice from heaven, as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of a great thunder: 

The 144,000 (saints of God from both OT and NT) now sing with one voice signifying their absolute unity in Christ.  Without their sin natures to now hinder them they are perfectly unified in motive, goal, and love for their Lord and Redeemer.  Their voice I loud, attracting all the attention of John.  Their voice is much like great waters flowing over a falls or the great pealing of thunder announcing a coming storm. 

 

and I heard the voice of harpers harping with their harps:

He also hears harps being played in honor of their Lord.  These harps symbolize: joyous celebration, praise, worship of their Lord.

Why this great time of worship?  He is about to being His second coming to the earth.  In doing so, He will be resurrecting their dead bodies and untiing them with it, He will be judging the lost and fully defeating the Satan and his kingdoms.  This will all be done in preparation for their living with Him eternally. 

 

(3)  And they sung as it were a new song

The redeemed of the Lord are now heard singing a “new song” of praise to the Lamb.   Just like the song sung by the 4 beasts and elders in 5:9, this song is a song that the 144,000 is not accustomed to singing.  Why?  Because this song will only be sung immediately prior to the Lord’s second coming.

The two songs are related in 5:9 the Lord is being praised for the salvation of His people based upon His work on the cross.  Here, the song is being done immediately prior to the taking of His people at His second coming… this is the physical salvation of His people from His wrath that is about to fall.

Both Psalm 98:1-9 and Psalm 144:9-10 speak of a new song that was sung by God’s people in the Old Testament.  It is interesting to note the similarities between these songs and the Revelation “new songs”…

Psalm 98:1-9 is very similar to the “new song” spoken of in Rev 5:9, both speak of God’s redemptive for His people.

On the other hand, Psalm 144:9-10 is more similar to the “new song” found in Rev 14:3, in both of these songs, we can see God’s physical rescuing of His people in view. 

 

before the throne, and before the four beasts, and the elders:

This new song sung by the 144,000 is sung in the presence of God (throne) and His people (the four beasts, the elders, the 144,000).

Keep in mind, the people of God are symbolized in three ways in the book of Revelation:

  1. the beasts represent God’s people as the recipients of spiritual life
  2. the elders represent God’s people as the recipients of divine authority to judge and rule in eternity
  3. the 144,000 represent God’s people formed into His mighty nation by His sovereign intervention in their lives

Literally, the song is sung by the redeemed in the presence of God alone.  The sing being sung by the 144,000 and not the elders nor the beasts helps to remind us that the subject of this song (His deliverance from wrath at His second coming) is a sovereign act of God that will manifest His spiritual kingdom by separating them from the fallen world and uniting them with Him throughout eternity. 

 

and no man could learn that song but the hundred and forty and four thousand, which were redeemed from the earth.

Only those who are sovereignly delivered from the wrath of God could learn and sing this new song immediately prior to His second coming.  The angels could not learn this song nor could any other created being.  Those who had already been redeemed and separated from this fallen earth could learn this song (from their personal experiences).

 

(4)  These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins.   These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth.   These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb.   (5)  And in their mouth was found no guile:  for they are without fault before the throne of God. 

God’s people who are in heaven are described as:

  1. “These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins.”

They are not dirtied with illicit unions of unfaithfulness (Hebs 13:4).  They are totally devoted to the Lord and spiritually pure.  (James 4:4, 2 Cor 11:2)

 

  1. “These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth.”

They are in union with and followers of the Lamb wherever He leads His people.  Dedicated obedience to Christ is shown (John 10:26-27, John 8:47, 1 John 4:5-6).

 

  1. “These were redeemed from among men,”

They were bought with a price… the shed blood of Christ on the cross (1 Peter 1:18-19)

 

  1. “being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb.”

They were separated from other of mankind for God’s use (James 1:18).  This is much like the OT first fruits that were separated from the remaining portion of the crops and then given for God’s use (Deut 18:4-5, Lev 23:17).

 

  1. “And in their mouth was found no guile:”

They speak honest, sincere words that are not touched by deceit.  Here we see their sincerity in service to Him (Mat 6:1-6, John 4:23-24).

 

  1. “for they are without fault before the throne of God.”

In God’s eyes they are looked upon as sinless based upon Christ’s work (Heb 9:14, Jude 24, 1 Thess 5:23, Phil 3:10-14)

 

The above description of God’s people can be also seen in Zephaniah 3:9-13. 

 

CHRIST REVEALED:

Christ, in this section of Scripture, is shown to us as the ultimate Savior of His people.

Not only does He redeem us through His death on the cross (Col 1:14) but, as a result, He saves us our spirit from the grave at our death (2 Cor 5:8) and later delivers our body at our resurrection (1 Cor 15:52).  As His redeemed people we are welcomed into His presence and forever with Him (1 Thess 4:17).

He truly is the ULTIMATE Saviour of His people, saving them from the penalty, bondage and presence of their sins, and the final wrath to come at His second coming!       

 

THE PRACTICAL APPLICATION (SUMMARY)

As we experience the Lord at work in our lives, we learn new things about His person and workings among us.  We see His grace, mercy, and sovereignty on display in our lives as He intervenes in the affairs of our life, actively bringing about His will.   Based upon these new experiences in our walk with Christ, may we all sing “new songs” of praise as we tell others of His wondrous works.

 

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SYMBOLS EMPLOYED IN THIS TEXT:

  1. a Lamb
  2. the mount Sion,
  3. an hundred forty and four thousand
  4. having his Father’s name written in their foreheads.
  5. a voice from heaven
  6. the voice of many waters
  7. the voice of a great thunder
  8. the voice of harpers harping with their harps:
  9. a new song
  10. the throne
  11. the four beasts
  12. the elders
  13. not defiled with women; for they are virgins.
  14. the firstfruits

 

THE RELATED SCRIPTURES:

 

SUPPLEMENTAL STUDIES/NOTES:

Is Your Life Marked By The Beast Or By The Living And True God Over All?

SIHs HALTAL ICON RevChristRev 13:17 KJV – And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.

 

 

 

For the SIH devotional on this subject:

http://wp.me/pU88A-47d

The Revelation Of Jesus Christ: “the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.”

SIH TOTT ICONRev 13:17 KJV

(17)  And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.

In this section of John’s vision, we can see that the mark of the beast can be described in two other ways… “the name of the beast” and “the number of his name”.

Please keep in mind, the symbolic “the mark of the beast” refers to the different inward and outward characteristics of lost mankind.  The inward characteristics include the mind, desires, and conscience that are corrupted due to mankind’s fallen nature.  The outward characteristics of lost mankind involve living an habitual lifestyle of sin based upon selfishness and moral corruption.

However, according to our text this morning there are two other aspects to this mark of the beast that is placed upon all lost mankind…

  1. First of all it is described as “the name of the beast”.

Wearing the name of someone implies ownership and usage.  For example, if I write my name in a book I am saying I own the book and the book is being used by myself.  This is the same basic principle of saying that the mark of the beast involves wearing his name.

In prior verses of this vision, we have seen that “blasphemy” is one of the names that is worn by the beast from the sea (Rev 13:1).   And it is a perfect characterization of how the lost are used by Satan and his kingdom to blaspheme the most Holy God. (2 Timothy 3:2).

  1. Secondly, it is described as “the number of his name.”

Later in this vision, we see that the number referred to is the number 666 (Rev 13:18).  This is is a number that symbolizes humanism (more on this in our next devotional).   What is humanism?  It is the exaltation of man.  It is saying that man should be the center of our attention, interest and devotion.  Basically, it is giving to man the honor that is due to God alone.  In that sense, humanism is making man equal to, or surpassing God Himself.

These are the aspects of the mark of the beast that is seen placed upon all lost mankind.  The prefect text that describes this mark of the beast is found in Rom 1:21-32…

“Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.  Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools,  And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and   fourfooted beasts, and creeping things.   

Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves:  Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.

For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:  And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.  And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;  Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,  Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful:  Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.”

These characteristics make up the “mark of the beast” clearly displaying the lost man’s influence by and submission to Satan and His worldly kingdoms.

May we as Christians understand their spiritual blindness and show Christ to them in a very kind and gentle manner, knowing that we were in the same spiritually blind condition before Christ opened our eyes to the truth!

For an in depth look at these sections of the Revelation:

http://wp.me/pU88A-46S

Have You Ever Been Excluded By Others Due To Your Stand For Christ?

SIHs HALTAL ICON RevChristRev 13:17 KJV – And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.

 

 

 

For the SIH devotional on this subject:

http://wp.me/pU88A-479

The Revelation Of Jesus Christ: “no man might buy or sell”

SIHs HALTAL ICON RevChristRev 13:17 KJV

(17)  And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.

 

 

Those who do not bear the mark of the beast are unable to buy or sell.  In other words, those who are the servants of Christ cannot fully participate in the world’s systems, for to do so would mean great compromise in our stand for Christ.

So, because of our stand for our Lord, we are excluded, mistreated, rejected and taken advantage of by this fallen world’s economic, political and religious systems.   We can see this taking place all around us, the degree of mistreatment varies based upon each particular situation the Christian is facing.

For some, it may mean simply being mocked or judged falsely; for others it may mean loss of a promotion, or even a job; there are those who may face ostracization from their circle of friends or even their families; or perhaps, losses in the legal, political, or economic systems may take place.  For many Christians, especially in foreign lands, they may face physical abuse, torture and even death.

 

Paul described the types of mistreatment that he faced from the lost world…

1Co 4:12-13 KJV – “…being reviled, we bless; being persecuted, we suffer it:  Being defamed, we intreat: we are made as the filth of the world, and are the offscouring of all things unto this day.”

 

Some of the types of mistreatment he mentioned include:

  1. Being “reviled” (vilified)           2.  Being “persecuted” (hunted down)
  2. Being “defamed” (spoken against)      4.  “made as the filth” (garbage, waste)
  3. “made as the … offscouring” (scum).

 

Wow! Have you ever felt like Paul?

Has the world ever lied about you, and mocked you as they mischaracterized your act of honesty which looked like foolishness and naiveté to them?

Have you ever felt as though the lost world treated you like waste or scum because you choose to abstain from sinful pleasures to remain faithful to Christ?

Do you remember how “small” you felt when you were made fun of at school for carrying a Bible?

What about the feeling you had when your family turned their back on you because you had left their false religion in order to be a follower of Christ?

Our list could go one and on.

Probably, to a certain extent, we have all felt that way at one time or another.  We all have been called upon to suffer abuse at the hands of the fallen world.  Some of us have been greatly abused, others not so much.  But in each and every case, it hurt us within and brought some type of loss into our life.

 

But if you notice, back in our 1 Corinthians 4: passage, we can see that Paul recognized this abuse was a tremendous opportunity to be faithful to His Lord.

Paul:

  1. “blessed” (spoke kindly about and to his abusers)
  2. “suffered” (held remained firm through God’s intervention in his life)
  3. “intreated” (he prayed for his abusers and their spiritual needs)

By handling his abuse in this way, he was being faithful to the Lord in four ways…

  1. He was continuously pleasing to the Lord, before, during and after the abuse
  2. He was setting a wonderful example for other believers to follow
  3. He was showing Christ to his abusers through his acts of kindness and love towards them
  4. He was laying up for himself eternal rewards

May we all follow Paul’s wonderful example of faithfulness in the abusive situations we face.

 

For an in depth look at these sections of the Revelation:

http://wp.me/pU88A-46S

Being Without Christ Is Primarily A Problem Of The Heart/Mind Not The Actions

SIHs HALTAL ICON RevChristRev 13:16 KJV – “And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads:”

 

 

 

For the SIH devotional on this subject:

http://wp.me/pU88A-474

The Revelation Of Jesus Christ: “to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads:”

SIH TOTT ICONRev 13:16 KJV

And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads:

 

 

The mark of the beast can be seen in both the head and hand of his followers.  What can we learn from this truth?

Please keep in mind that the mark of the beast is simply the characteristics of those who are under the influence and Satan and His worldly powers.  When the Word says that the mark of the beast is found on the forehead and/or hand it is saying that these characteristics can be found in both the thoughts, choices and actions of those who are a part of Satan’s kingdoms.   The Bible clearly supports these principles:

 

The mind of the lost:

Tit 1:15 KJV – “Unto the pure all things are pure: but unto them that are defiled and unbelieving is nothing pure; but even their mind and conscience is defiled.”

Here, those who are lost are described as being “defiled” (contaminated) and  “unbelieving” (destitute of faith).  Both their mind and conscience are contaminated by sin and the worldly carnal influences.

 

2Co 11:3 KJV – “But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.”

Here, the lost person’s mind is described as being “corrupted” (spoiled, brought to ruin).  In other words, its contamination and unbelief results in the mind being useless in the pursuit and application of spiritual truth.

 

 

The actions of the lost:

Gal 5:19-21 KJV – “Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness,   Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,   Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.”

Here we find a listing of many outward characteristics that can be found in the life of those who are a part of the kingdom of Satan:

  1. Adultery – transferring our affections from spouse to another
  2. fornication – intimate relations outside the marriage union
  3. uncleanness – impurities
  4. lasciviousness – loss of control or restraint
  5. Idolatry – worship of other gods
  6. witchcraft – use of drugs, potions, spells
  7. hatred – hostility, enmity
  8. variance – quarrelling
  9. emulations – long-term malice
  10. wrath – burning, eplosive hatred
  11. strife – divisions
  12. seditions – arguing, disturbance
  13. heresies – false teachings
  14. Envyings – jealousy
  15. murders – to slay
  16. drunkenness – intoxication
  17. revellings – rioting

 

 

The relationship between the corrupt mind and the sinful actions of the lost…

Jas 1:15 KJV “Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.”

Here, the lost person’s defiled desires (lusts) will lead them to willfully choose to commit acts of sin.  Their outward actions are only indicators of their corrupted inward condition

 

May we all remember that a lost person’s visible lifestyle is only half the story when it comes to their membership in the kingdom of Satan.  It is not enough for a lost individual to simply “clean up his act” and outwardly reform his actions to remove himself from Satan’s influence.

Because their inward being is also corrupt, they need more than outward reformation.  They need to receive an inward change of heart which only can come through the gracious salvation that is found in Christ alone…

Eze 36:26 KJV – “A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.”

This is the only change that can remove a lost person from Satan’s rule to live a new life in service to Christ as a child of God.

 

For an in depth look at these sections of the Revelation:

http://wp.me/pU88A-46S

Jesus, Only Jesus!

 

“Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.”  (Acts 4:12)

“Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”  (John 14:6)

“That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of [things] in heaven, and [things] in earth, and [things] under the earth;  And [that] every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ [is] Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”  (Philippians 2:10-11)

 

 

Revelation 13: Summary

SIH STSTA ICON

 

SUMMARY OF THE CHAPTER:

In Revelation chapter 13, we looked at the two great earthly kingdoms used by Satan in his war against Christ and His people.  These kingdoms are the political kingdoms of this world and the religious kingdoms of this world.  Satan uses both of these to oppose the work of Christ by directly persecuting the people of God.

This chapter can be outlined as follows:

  1. The Beast of the Sea – The Political Kingdoms of This World (13:1-10)
  2. The Beast of the Earth – The False Religions of This World (13:11-15)
  3. The Mark of the Beast – The Number of Man (13:16-18)

 

SUMMARY OF EACH DIVISION OF CHAPTER:

 

  1. Revelation 13:1-10 – The Beast From The Sea (The Political Kingdoms of This World)

In this section of John’s vision, we see a Satanic, wild, dangerous beast arising from the sea (the unsettled mass of fallen humanity).

The beast’s seven heads symbolize the seven world empires that will control the world until Christ comes again (Egypt, Assyria, Babylon, Medo/Persia, Greece, Rome, Various World Powers).  The physical description of its body, feet and mouth all refer to the previous empires that have existed in history.  The names appearing on the beast’s heads (blasphemy) teach us one of the core roles of the political empires is to speak against God.

The ten horns on the seventh head picture the various countries that will attempt to control the world coming after the dividing of the Roman Empire.

The deadly wound received by the sixth head (the Roman Empire) represents Christ’s death on the cross which won the ultimate victory over this beast.    The appearance of the healing of this wound, speaks of the timeframe following the crucifixion when the beast continues to be active.  At the second coming of Christ, the true deadly nature of this wound is revealed with the beast being cast into the Lake of Fire for an eternity.

This beast receives its power and position from Satan, himself, under the Sovereign will of allowance of God.  Finally in the last portion of this section we read the Lord’s assurance that Divine retribution will be sent against this beast for it’s great acts of rebellion, blasphemy and abuse against the Lord and His people.

 

  1. Revelation 13:11-15 – The Beast From The Earth (The Religious Kingdoms Of This World)

John is now introduced to the second beast, the beast that comes from the earth.  This beast represents the religious kingdoms of this world (false religions, prophets, teachers and antichrists in the world).

This beast is said to resemble a lamb with two horns but speaking like a dragon.  This reveals to us the deceitful nature of this beast that appears to be a gentle, humble, spiritual kingdom but is, in actually, the mouthpiece of Satan, himself.  Although this beast look very different from the first beast, and possesses a different set of roles to fulfill, these beasts still share the same authority, message and leader.  Throughout history the false religions of this world speak great words of comfort and hope while leading lost mankind down a path that leads to their ultimate destruction.

Along with possessing deceitful speech, this beast performs great miracles hoping to attract followers.  These miracles are counterfeit divine miracles that are affective in misleading lost mankind to follow them unquestioningly.

This beast causes their followers to create an idolatrous image as a part of their service to the beast.  This image is symbolic of the fruits of ministry that are born by these lost indivduals.   By creating an image lost mankind is declaring through their works of false righteousness that they have turned their backs on the true God and now are accepting of false worship which is idolatry.  Also they are declaring that they are adherents to a humanistic philosophy that states that men are able, in and of themselves, to create their own gods and worship them as if they were the true God over all.

By presenting these images to the political kingdoms in charge, they are proving beyond doubt that they have been misled by the religious powers of the world and are now followers of the doctrines of Satan himself.  The image receives life in the sense that the outward ancient practices of the heathen are constantly being reintroduced to mankind in a new way appealing to their senses and deceiving them into making them lifestyle choices. 

 

  1. Revelation 13: 16-18– The Mark Of The Beast

Finally, it is revealed to John that these beasts work in harmony to have their followers receive “the mark of the beast” which is also dewscribed as “666” and “the number of a man”.   When these titles are examined closely we can see this mark is a symbolic way of saying that the followers of the beast have taken upon themselves the teachings of humanism, unsuccessful attempts to become perfect in God’s sight through their own works, and sinful rebellion against God.

This mark was to be placed upon their forehead and/or right hand.  This was indicative of the mark of ownership and servitude placed upon slaves in the Roman Empire.  This helps us to understand that anyone who takes part in the ministry of these two beasts are the property of Satan, serving him as a lifestyle.

 

WHAT’S COMING NEXT IN THIS SERIES?:

In Revelation chapter 14, we will begin to look in greater detail at the second coming of Christ.  This will mark the end of the activities of Satan and his political and religious kingdoms of this world.  Not only do we see the end of the powers of the darkness of this world, but also the protection and safety of the people of God.

A short outline of chapter 14 includes:

1.  The New Song Of The 144,000 (14:1-5)
2.  The Three Angels (14:6-13)
3.  The Reaping Of The Earth(14:14-20)

 

 

May the Lord bless us as we seek to see Jesus in the pages of the book of Revelation.

 

Homepage:             http://www.settledinheaven.org

Text Blog:               http://www.settledinheaven.wordpress.com

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Does Your Life Contain The Marks Of Satan’s Influence… or Christ’s ?

SIHs HALTAL ICON RevChristRev 13:16 KJV – And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads:

 

 

 

For the SIH devotional  on this subject:

http://wp.me/pU88A-46Y

The Revelation Of Jesus Christ: “both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond”

SIH TOTT ICONRev 13:16 KJV

And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads:

 

 

So who will possess “the mark of the beast” (ie the characteristics of those who are submissive to Satan and his worldly kingdoms)?   Individuals that are a part of every possible social, economic, and religious parts of mankind can be in submission to Satan and his kingdoms.

It doesn’t matter how much or little respect we may possess;  it does not matter how much of the world’s wealth we may own;  nor what positions of authority or servitude we may hold; men from throughout all areas of society are under the influence of Satan and the bondage of sin.

 

Rom 3:23 KJV – “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” 

This verse helps us to understand that men of all social, economic, and political status are capable of being under the influence of sin and under Satan’s influence.

As a matter of fact, please notice this verse tells us that ALL men are fallen sinful creatures due to the influence of Satan in this world.  That means that even those who are now in willful submission to Christ, were at one point in their lives under the bondage of sin and influenced by Satan.   Yes, even Christians were under Satan’s rule prior to their deliverance from sin.

 

 

This basic principle holds great importance for both lost and saved alike…

For those who have never come to know Christ as Lord and Savior, you should never feel “safe” in your social, financial, or political status.  There is no amount of fame, fortune or political power that can deliver you from Satan’s influence, nor the judgment that awaits all who are a part of his worldly kingdoms.

So what can you do?

Mar 1:15 KJV – “And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.”

The Lord clearly explains in His Word that you are called to simply:

  1. repent (agree with God about your sins and your sinful condition, turn from your sins, and turn to Christ)
  2. believe the gospel, in other words, place your faith in Christ believing that He died on the cross to pay your sin debt and was resurrected proving to all that He had successfully secured the salvation of His people. He was then seen by many witnesses proving His death and resurrection were not simple a fable or a legend.

 

 

For those who are saved, we should see the need of Christ by ALL mankind and be motivated to minister to all that may cross our path.  No matter how rich and famous, or poor and infamous a person may be, they all need Christ.

As the opportunity opens to us, we should always be willing to minister to anyone in need of Christ, whether a king or a slave, a mega-millionaire or someone who is homeless…

“For ALL have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

 

 

 

For an in depth look at these sections of the Revelation:

http://wp.me/pU88A-46S

Satan Gives Life To That Which Brings Death To Mankind…

SIHs HALTAL ICON RevChristRev 13:15 – “And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed.”

 

 

For the SIH devotional on this subject:

http://wp.me/pU88A-46L

Revelation 13:16-18 “The Mark Of The Beast: 666”

SIH STSTA ICON

 

THE TEXT:

 

 

Rev 13:16-18 KJV

(16)  And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads:
(17)  And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.
(18)  Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six.

 

THE INTRODUCTION:

In chapter 12, we saw a defeated Satan’s continuing opposition against the Lord and His people.  Throughout the ages, Satan has used the political kingdoms of this fallen world as tools in an attempt to abuse, persecute and even martyr the people of God.

We have looked at the POLITICAL and RELIGIOUS powers of the world and how Satan has used them throughout history to afflict the people of God.  We saw these aspects of Satan’s kingdom in vs 1-15.

In the middle portion of chapter 13 (vs 11-15), we will learn more about the SPIRITUAL kingdoms of this world as they afflict the people of God.  Then, in the following portion of chapter 13, we will be introduced the “mark” (major characteristic) of those who join the beast in its stand against the people of God.

  1. The Beast of the Sea – The Political Kingdoms of This World (13:1-10)
  2. The Beast of the Earth – The False Religious Kingdoms of This World (13:11-15)
  3. The Mark of the Beast – The Number of Humanism (13:16-18)

 

 

THE EXPOSITORY STUDY:

Rev 13:16-18 KJV

(16)  And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark

The false religions of the world cause men of all social and economic status to receive their mark (an outward indication of their relationship with that religion.

It includes men that:

  1. “small and great” – those that hold little or much authority, fear and respect of others.
  2. “rich or poor” – those that are wealthy or poverty stricken
  3. “free or bond” – those who are freemen and those who are slaves

They are to receive a “mark” (ie an impress or scratch or etching).  In other words, the mark is an outward declaration of the man’s affiliation with this false religion (Rev 13:16, 14:9, 17:15, 20:4).  Much like baptism in water is a public declaration of the Christian’s faith in Christ and membership in a local assembly.

What is this mark that the lost of the world will receive?  It will not be a literal mark but it is their outward testimony of allegiance to these kingdoms (Matt 7:15-20).   It shows forth in what they live for, what they are committed to, what their actions proclaim and what their mouths testify.  It is very much like the Christian’s testimony (their baptism, lifestyle, and speech) that reveal to others that they are one of Christ’s.    Lost mankind “receives” this mark but submitting to the teachings and commands of these kingdoms.  In doing so, their life begins to testify to their allegiance to the beasts.

 

in their right hand, or in their foreheads:

This mark is said to be placed on their right hand or their forehead.  Keep in mind, in the days of the Roman empire, Servants were given marks on their hand or forehead that would show their ownership.

Also the forehead and hand represent the two great areas of a servants dedication to their master.  The forehead represents their inward parts being dedicated to their master (their love, desires and thoughts).  The right hand represents their outward acts of service (their labor and works) done in obedience to their master.

Keep in mind, this mark of the beast ( was to mimic the people of God who are said to be marked by God for protection and declaration of ownership (Exo 28:36-38, Ezek 9:4-6, 16:8-13, Rev 9:4, 14:1, 22:4) 

 

(17)  And that no man might buy or sell,

Throughout history, the areas of worldly power and wealth are found in the political and religious arenas of this world.   If men are a part of these kingdoms they can receive the favor, wealth and power of this world.  Those who have kept themselves separate from these are in danger of ostracism, persecution, or even martyrdom.  These very acts are predicted to take place in the lives of Christians throughout the ages (2 Tim 3:12, Matt 10:22-25, John 16:2, 1 Thess 3:3-4 etc).

 

save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.

The identifying characteristics of those dedicated to the kingdoms of Satan are described in three ways:

  1. The mark – the graven mark… an outward identifying mark. This mark reveals to others to whom there is allegiance
  2. The name of the beast – The identifying title of the beast. This mark shows us who the beast is.  Just like a Christians’ testimony reveals Christ to the world.
  3. The number of his name – The identifying number of the beast…. “666” 

 

(18)  Here is wisdom.

Here is the wise way to understand these things.  Here is a revealing of the true nature of this mark.  This is the way to understand this mark when you apply God’s Word to the explanation of the mark.  This is how a wise man will come to understand this mark.

 

Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast:

To come to an proper identity of the mark you must “count” the number of the beast.  To “count” is translated form a word that means carries with it the idea of “counting stones”, “examining stones”, “touching stones”.

In those days, stones were used as: a ballot to vote, as a ticket to gain entrance, or as stones used to count up sums.

In all three of these examples you have stones being examined (or counted) to come to a conclusion….

  1. count the stones used as a ballot to understand the verdict that has been rendered
  2. examine the existence of a stone to allow admission to an event
  3. count up stones to find a sum

To “count the number of the beast” – means to examine the number of the beast to come to a proper understanding of it.  Much like “counting the cost” (examine by adding up the costs involved – Lk 14:28), you would count individual stones to find a verdict or prove possession of a stone to all admission.  In other words, by examining the number that is associated with this mark, will reveal the true nature and identity of the beasts and the person that is marked.

 

for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six.

The mark is described in two complimentary ways…

  1. it is the number of a man (as compared to the number of a God or an angel or another part of creation)
  2. it is the number 666 – six throughout the bible is the number of man, imperfection and labor
  3. man made on sixth day
  4. man falls short of perfection (7 number of perfection)
  5. man consigned to 6 days of labor (day 7 is day set aside for God and rest)
  6. Goliath is symbolic of sinful rebellious mankind (6 linked closely to Goliath – (see 1 Sam 17:1-7)
  7. 666 as “The Imperfect Trinity” (Satan, The Beast from the Sea, The Beast from the Earth) stands in stark contrast to 777 “The Perfect Trinity” (God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit).

This mark is the number 666.  This is the mark of a man (mankind). “a” is used here not to speak of a specific man, but to speak of a man in comparison to other parts of God’s creation.  It is not the number of an animal, a planet, or a sun…. it is the number of “a man”.  This is the true interpretation of this mark.

Here are some of the truths about Satan, the two beasts, and lost mankind can learn from this number:

  1. as the number of man, we can learn that humanism is the core philosophy of Satan, the beasts and lost man. They all seek to exalt man, using man’s pride and arrogance to appeal to them attracting them to become followers.  Although they claim perfection, they always fail as a part of fallen creation.  None are perfect, nor can become perfect based upon their own efforts and works.
  2. as the number of imperfection, we can learn that all of these fall far short of pleasing the Lord and securing peace with God.
  3. as the number of labor, we can see that their labor is fruitless, their attempts to overthrow God are wasted, they have already been defeated and sentenced to the Lake of Fire.
  4. as the number of sinful rebellion against God, we can see that all of these (Satan, his kingdoms and lost mankind) exhibit a rebellious attitude towards the Lord.
  5. as the “Imperfect Trinity” (666) Satan and the two beasts, although they claim perfection, fall far short of the perfection of the Lord Most High. Mankind is also an imperfect trinity (body, soul, and spirit), all mankind have been touched by sin and alienated from God.

Truly, the mark 666 has fallen upon all who have become a part of the powers of darkness in the spiritual warfare about us.  Whether it be fallen mankind, the political and religious powers of the world or Satan himself, they all wear the name of blasphemy and carry with them the mark of imperfect, prideful, fallen mankind and the powers of darkness… 666. 

 

CHRIST REVEALED:

In this lesson about the mark of the beast, we find a very valuable lesson about Christ.  In the simple mark of 666, we can see that everything that Satan, his beasts, and lost mankind are not… Christ IS!

As we looked at this mark and saw the imperfection, sinfulness and separation from God that is experienced by them, we find Christ standing in great contrast as the Perfect, Sinless, One who enjoyed perfect unity with His Father in heaven…

Php 2:5-11 KJV –

“Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:   Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:   But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:   And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.

Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:   That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth;   And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” 

 

May we all praise the Lord for being who we are not.  If he were simply another man, we all would be faced with eternal doom, however, because He was far greater than fallen man, He could be our perfect sacrifice for sin and become our Lord and Savior.

 

THE PRACTICAL APPLICATION (SUMMARY)

Folks, the exaltation of man and the debasement of Christ are two hallmarks of Satan and his kingdoms.  Anytime, we find man given praise or honor at the expense of Christ’s greatness is certain to be rooted in humanism and the kingdoms of Satan.  May we always be on guard against giving man credit for things that only God deserves all the praise.   May we always remember that Christ alone is the One to be glorified and honored with our lives.

 

Homepage:             http://www.settledinheaven.org

Text Blog:               http://www.settledinheaven.wordpress.com

Video Blog:              http://www.youtube.com/settledinheaven

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SYMBOLS EMPLOYED IN THIS TEXT:

 

1,  a mark

  1. in their right hand
  2. in their foreheads:
  3. might buy or sell,
  4. the name of the beast
  5. the number of his name.
  6. Six hundred threescore and six.

 

 

 

 

THE RELATED SCRIPTURES:

 

 

SUPPLEMENTAL STUDIES/NOTES: