Revelation Lectures(71)

Revelation 16:15-21

[15] (“Behold, I am coming like a thief Blessed is the one who stays awake and keeps his clothes, so that he will not walk about naked and men will not see his shame.”)
[16] And they gathered them together to the place which in Hebrew is called Har-Magedon.
[17] Then the seventh angel poured out his bowl upon the air, and a loud voice came out of the temple from the throne, saying, “It is done.”
[18] And there were flashes of lightning and sounds and peals of thunder; and there was a great earthquake, such as there had not been since man came to be upon the earth, so great an earthquake was it, and so mighty.
[19] The great city was split into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell Babylon the great was remembered before God, to give her the cup of the wine of His fierce wrath.
[20] And every island fled away, and the mountains were not found.
[21] And huge hailstones, about one hundred pounds each, came down from heaven upon men; and men blasphemed God because of the plague of the hail, because its plague was extremely severe.

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ.

From the beginning of the 7 Year Great Tribulation, there will be endless plagues.

As the angels break the seven seals, blow the seven trumpets, and pour out the seven bowls, the plagues become more and more serious.

Wars and natural disasters continue and they result in various diseases and pollution of the natural environment.

The plagues that come upon the earth during the 7 Year Great Tribulation become too miserable to find a proper word to describe them as the Tribulation comes close to the end.

However, the people who live during the 7 Year Great Tribulation don’t realize that they are living in the final stage of human history.

They are surprised at the extreme plagues before their eyes, but they have a vague hope that it will be fine in the future.

If you think about the current world situation, people have hope for a better future.

However, all the situations in politics, economy, society, and the conditions of the natural environment are not getting better.

They all become worse and worse setting up the circumstances to make the 7 Year Great Tribulation possible.

Just what are the conditions going to be like when it’s close to the end of the 7 Year Great Tribulation?

The situation never becomes better, but instead it becomes hopeless.

When the angel finally pours out the seventh bowl, the plague reaches its peak.

The diseases due to the destruction and pollution of the natural environment, the disorder and disputes due to the drain of oil resources; all these aggravate into serious crisis.

And there are indications of another great war.

Revelation 16:16 says, “And they gathered them together to the place which in Hebrew is called Har-Magedon.” The gathering is for this war.

I explained to you about the 3 spirits in the last lecture. Let’s take a close look at them.

The scripture says that the 3 spirits are unclean spirits like frogs, and that they come out of the mouth of the dragon, of the mouth of the beast, and of mouth of the false prophet.

First, the unclean spirit that comes out of the mouth of the dragon works through the head of Israel.

The unclean spirit that comes out of the mouth of the beast works through the head of the unified government.

And the unclean spirit that comes out of the mouth of the false prophet works through the head of the religion that conspires with the unified government.

Now, the scripture says these unclean spirits are like frogs.

A frog has a repulsively creepy look, and the croaking sound it makes from the mouth is noisy and disturbing.

There are some that look less repulsive, but many of them are really ugly.

There was the plague of frogs among the ten plagues that came upon Egypt.

It was because the pharaoh, the king of Egypt, was detestable like a frog before God.

Some women hate frogs; they are disgusted just looking at a frog.

How disgusting and terrible it would be if your house were full of frogs; if they were found in your dishes and beds?

This creepy frog refers to something that is spiritually an abomination.

Therefore, the use the image of frogs in some places is not appropriate.

Revelation 16:14 says, “They – the unclean spirits like frogs – are spirits of demons, performing signs, which go out to the kings of the whole world, to gather them together for the war of the great day of God, the Almighty.”

Here, ‘performing signs’ doesn’t refer to the signs that are the works of God that you frequently witness.

It refers to sweet talk and tricks that tempts the hearts of people.

They tempt people to make a great war that could involve the whole world.

Apparently, this war seems to break out because of people.

On the one hand, it appears that people gather together to make war to seek for their benefits with evil hearts.

On the other hand, however, it is eventually in the providence of God.

As the time that God has set comes, conditions are met for a war to break out, and thus each nation starts to move.

The conditions, as I explained in the last lecture, start from the drain of the oil resources.

So far, the unified government controls the whole world under the pretext of keeping the world order.

Various resources are distributed under the control of the unified government.

Now, news that the oil resource is running out is wide-spread.

Then, the world becomes chaotic, and each nation looks for their own path of survival.

Especially, the big countries that had been silenced become agitated all the more.

They had strong power, but they chose to cooperate with the unified government to seek for their national benefit.

However, they decide that they should not depend on the unified government any longer, and that they should make separate moves to seize the remaining oil resource.

And they also desire to take the initiative in the world that had been given to the unified government.

These moves are detected by the unified government.

In order to stop them, the Unified Government tries to gain the support of the countries of the Middle East, Israel, and other neighboring countries.

To do it the head of the unified government, the head of the religion that conspires with the unified government, and the head of Israel are moved by the three unclean spirits and they deceive the neighboring countries.

They persuade them with flattery and smooth talk.

“Some big countries are discontented with the current system, and try to take the power over the oil in the Middle East. But what they can give you is little. It is the unified government that can make your life rich and protected from the other big countries.” They persuade them like this.

And it is described in the scripture in Revelation 16:16, “they gathered them together to the place which in Hebrew is called Har-Magedon.”

People generally think that ‘Har-Magedon’ is Megiddo in Israel.

Megiddo is located in the southern Galilee; it is a well-known fortressed city and battle field from the ancient days.

However, ‘Har-Magedon’ in this scripture contains spiritual meaning, instead of referring to a certain place.

It has the meaning of ‘the gathering of the destroyers.’

The gathering of those who destroy the world is arranged, and another great war breaks out.

When the situation becomes critical like this, the 7th bowl is poured out.

Before I explain the last plague, you can find a warning message from God again in Revelation 16:15.

It says, “Behold, I am coming like a thief. Blessed is the one who stays awake and keeps his clothes, so that he will not walk about naked and men will not see his shame.”

It means that you should live an awakened Christian life in order to have nothing to do with these miserable plagues.

It is to urge those who profess that they believe in the Lord to check themselves once again.

In Matthew Chapter 22, there was a man who was not dressed in wedding clothes (formal attire) even though he was invited to the dinner of a king.

It was not an ordinary dinner; it was the dinner that the king held.

There should be no one that would attend without preparation; if there were such a person, it would be terribly rude.

All the invited guests were dressed in their best clothes, but there was one who was not suitably dressed, and thus he was easily spotted.

The king said to him, “Friend, how did you come in here without wedding clothes?’ but the man was speechless.

He was so sorry that he could not speak a word. Later he was kicked out of the place.

Matthew 22:13-14 says, “Then the king said to the servants, ‘Bind him hand and foot, and throw him into the outer darkness; in that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ For many are called, but few are chosen.”

In a spiritual sense, being invited to the dinner means that he professed that he believed in the Lord and managed his own Christian life.

Even though people are invited, not all of them can enter the wedding feast.

He thought he could participate in the wedding feast since he was invited, but as a result of not being dressed he was eventually kicked out.

‘Not being dressed’ means that he didn’t circumcise his heart, but lived in sin like the worldly people do.

Even though they say they believe and they do go to church, there are many spiritually slumbering people.

They come to worship services and prayer meetings, and they are also given duties in their church; but it doesn’t mean that they are all awake.

If you are awake, you should circumcise your heart.

And you should prepare the clean wedding clothes of a bride to come to the wedding feast.

Those who don’t prepare the wedding clothes will feel ashamed as if they were naked before the eyes of people.

Since they are thrown into the outer darkness, it means they will not be attending the 7 Year Wedding banquet, and that they have nothing to do with salvation.

There isn’t much time left before the saved children of God will enter the wedding banquet of the Lord.

However, the worldly people don’t pay attention when they are told the Lord is coming quickly.

Even God-believing people don’t pay attention to it.

When there are great plagues as the signs of the end time, they, too, are shocked and alarmed.

But, when the plagues become frequent, they become accustomed to them.

Therefore, even though the afflictions and plagues are getting more and more serious as the 7 Year Great Tribulation approaches, those who are spiritually asleep consider them to be normal occurrences.

Let’s take an example of the price of the oil.

A couple of years ago, people worried that it would be terrible if the price of the oil went over 100 dollars.

But now, even the price is well over 100 dollars, people have become dulled toward it.

The price jumped up and then went down a little. When it is repeated like this, people become dulled toward the price of the oil.

They fall into shock and confusion for a moment, but soon they go back to their normal way of life.

Likewise, even though there are terrible plagues and many people die, when such plagues are common, people come to get used to them.

They don’t realize that these plagues are the signs of the end time of the world.

That’s why the Lord says in Luke 17:27, “They were eating, they were drinking, they were marrying, they were being given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all.”

As the Lord says, people concentrate on the perishable things of this world until the last moment of the Judgment, and then they face the Last Day.

The same applies to those who believe in the Lord if they are not awake.

Even if they are told that it is the end time of the world, they don’t realize it.

They may even say, “It may be the last days, but surely the Lord can’t come this quickly , so I’m sure there is still some time left.”

To them, the Day of the Lord ‘comes like a thief’.

Therefore, you should awaken and be able to read the flow of the times.

You must not, so to speak, ‘take off your clothes and walk around naked’.

Clothes refer to the heart in a spiritual sense.

‘Keeping the clothes’ means keeping the heart.

In this world where sin and evil are rampant, you can spot dirty things wherever you may go.

In order to live in such a place, the children of God should be awakened, and not give their hearts over to the perishable things.

They should long for the Day of the Lord, and diligently work to be sanctified.

Only then can they preserve their whole spirit, soul, and body without spot or blame.

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ.

Let’s take a closer look at the clothes of the saints.

In its many parts, the Bible tells us what kind of clothes the children of God should put on.

For example, Romans 13:14 says, “But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh in regard to its lusts.”

Also, Galatians 3:27 says, “For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ.”

‘Being baptized into Christ’ means accepting the Lord and being baptized in the Holy Spirit.

When you are baptized in the Holy Spirit, and accomplish the holy heart like that of the Lord, you can be said to cloth yourself with Christ.

Colossians 3:12 says, “So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.”

You should put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience like the Lord.

By the way, the clothes don’t simply refer to the heart.

To the extent you accomplish the Truth, you will be dressed with such a proper set of clothes.

For example, those who pray in the fullness and inspiration of the Holy Spirit, and communicate with God are dressed with the ‘clothes of communication’.

In other words, they are spiritually dressed in the grace of God even thought it cannot be seen.

And in heaven, what they have accomplished and practiced on the earth is actually given in the form of clothes.

The most basic thing is the white fine linen.

It’s not just ordinary white linen; it is the linen of the light; the light that that the linen gives out is different to the extent that people have accomplished sanctification.

However, people who will live forever in heaven are not always clothed just with the fine linen.

The clothes of sanctification, holiness, praise, faithfulness, gentleness, prayers, righteousness, truth, and so on. It is in this way that the number of the clothes given can be increased.

The color and pattern of the clothes also vary.

Basically, they are all white clothes; in cases, they may have other brilliant colors on them.

However, the clothes in heaven are different from the red, yellow, or pink clothes of this world.

For example, the red clothes in heaven are not ordinary red of this world.

It is the clothes with a reverberating light of red.

To help you understand better, if you wrap a bright light bulb with thin red fabric, dim and reverberating red light comes out.

When the clothes of heaven are shining brightly, there is a profundity of color in the light that is in them.

In this way there is not only the white, but also various colors of clothing can be given in heaven.

Moreover, if you have done something that pleased God, a special pattern is put on the clothes.

If you give praise that pleases God, your clothes in heaven will have a pattern of praise.

If you pile up countless prayers for the kingdom of God, your clothes will have a beautiful pattern of prayer.

These patterns also move the heart of the people and give joy to them.

In addition, there are various ornamentations.

For example, a brooch is given as a reward for evangelization.

So you see that there are not only white fine linens, but also various colors, patterns, and ornamentations.

Just how many beautiful dresses are here on the earth?

But, no clothing at any time and anywhere on earth can be compared with the clothes in heaven.

Please believe this; as much as you accomplish sanctification, and as much as you work hard for the kingdom of God and pile up rewards in heaven, indescribably beautiful clothes will be given to you.

Now, Revelation 16:17-18 says, “Then the seventh angel poured out his bowl upon the air, and a loud voice came out of the temple from the throne, saying, “It is done.” And there were flashes of lightning and sounds and peals of thunder; and there was a great earthquake, such as there had not been since man came to be upon the earth, so great an earthquake was it, and so mighty.”

The 7th angel pours out his bowl upon the air.

So far, six angels have poured out their bowls.

The first angel poured the bowl on the earth, the second into the sea, and the third into the rivers and the springs of waters.

The 4th angel poured the bowl upon the sun, the 5th on the throne of the beast, and the 6th on the Great River, the Euphrates.

Now finally, the 7th angel pours his bowl upon the air.

It means that the plague is much more huge and terrible than the previous ones.

The air is not in a particular limited place.

It is in the first heaven. It is over all the places where human beings exist.

Therefore, the fact that the 7th angel pours his bowl upon the air means that the judgment of God’s wrath is upon the whole world.

The scripture says, “A loud voice came out of the temple from the throne, saying, “It is done.””

This voice is the voice from God.

“It is done” is the proclamation that everything is over as the 7th bowl is poured.

It is the word spoken to proclaim again that the history of all human beings is ultimately under the control of God.

People live their lives as they fit, but all the processes will see the end result in the providence of God.

The scripture continues; “there were flashes of lightning and sounds and peals of thunder; and there was a great earthquake, such as there had not been since man came to be upon the earth, so great an earthquake was it, and so mighty.”

When God says, “It’s done,” there come flashes of lightning and sounds and peals of thunder and a great earthquake.

‘Lightning’ refers to the authority of God.

It is the authority of God that accomplishes the predestined things in the will of God and the promised things without the slightest error.

Next, the ‘sounds’ refer to the power of God.

This strong and resounding sound indicates the power of God the Almighty who can do everything.

The fact that there are flashes of lightning and sounds means that what God says in His authority and power that it is accomplished as said.

In other words, just as God says, “It’s done,” all things are guaranteed to come to an end.

Now, ‘peals of thunder’ refer to the wrath of God.

It indicates all the wrath that God has endured with while cultivating human beings.

In order to get true children, God has endured thousands of years as if it were a day for the days of human cultivation.

Nevertheless, sin and evil is rampant in this world.

At the moment the cultivation is over, the wrath of God comes upon all according to the justice.

And it is revealed in the form of flashes of lightning and sounds and peals of thunder and a great earthquake.

There have been great earthquakes in the history of human beings, and there are still earthquakes of great magnitude occurring in many corners of the world.

During the 7 Year great Tribulation, such huge earthquakes occur.

But at this last moment, there comes the earthquake that is much more terrible than the earthquakes during the 7 Year Great Tribulation and that is much greater than any other of the plagues that have occurred since the creation of the earth.

The whole earth is shook when the authority, power and wrath of God burst out.

By the way, there is a fundamental reason that these lightning and sounds and thunder and a great earthquake take place in this earth.

That is the nuclear war they like of which was never seen before.

In other words, at the moment of concluding the 7 Year Great Tribulation, there is another huge nuclear war that will break out.

We will look into this in the next lecture.

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ.

What kind of clothes would you like to put on in heaven?

What kind of patterns and ornamentation would you like to have?

Please, be diligent in sanctifying yourself with such a hope.

And pile up rewards in heaven.

Only those who awaken with such a hope can pray.

Only those who awaken can be faithful as well.

Only those who awaken can live in the righteousness and truth.

Those who awaken will circumcise their hearts and run toward sanctification.

Please check yourself whether you are awake or asleep in your Christian life.

Do you pray? Are you faithful? Do you keep marching on toward sanctification?

I hope all of you will awaken while managing a Christian life.

I urge you to put on a beautiful dress of heaven and join the Feast of Heaven.

May all of you be in the feast in heaven, in the name of the Lord, Jesus Christ, I pray!

[Amen]

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