Revelation #31 Revelation 19:1-10 End Times: Let the Hallelujahs Ring


Revelation #31 Revelation 19:1-10 End Times: Let the Hallelujahs Ring


Babylon is fallen and there is a hallelujah chorus of praise. The Marriage supper of the Lamb is about to begin. Heaven will open wide, “the clouds rolled back as a scroll;” and the King of Kings and Lord of Lords, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, enters the scene. The Beast has assembled its armies in Megiddo and is going to go face-to-face with Jesus. But first the response to the fall of Babylon. Chapter 19 is a chapter of victory.


Rev 19:1-2 (MSG)

I heard a sound like massed choirs in Heaven singing,  Hallelujah! The salvation and glory and power are God's—his judgments true, his judgments just. He judged the great Whore who corrupted the earth with her lust. He avenged on her the blood of his servants.


Hallelujah, time to praise God.  The Hebrew “halelu” means joyous praise and boasting, “Yah” is a shortened form of “YHWH” a prominent name for the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.  The Great Whore is Babylon who seduced humanity from living aligned with God’s will, His commands, and the teachings of Jesus. Babylon was found drunk with the blood of those who had bent their knee to the Lordship of Christ, Babylon who corrupted every culture is destroyed.  So, the mass choir sings of God’s judgment to rid His creation of anything that would hinder or block a positive response to His overtures of love to redeem people from a dead-end way of life (Philippians 3:19, Colossians 1:13-29) and set them free to live life to the full.


Revelation 19:3-4 (MSG)

Then, more singing:  Hallelujah! The smoke from her burning billows up to high Heaven forever and ever and ever. The Twenty-four Elders and the Four Animals fell to their knees and worship God on his Throne, praising, Amen! Yes! Hallelujah!


Babylon’s destruction is final and forever.


Isaiah 34:9-11 (MSG)

 “The whole country a smoking, stinking garbage dump—The fires burning day and night, the skies black with endless smoke. Generation after generation of wasteland—no more travelers through this country! Vultures and skunks will police the streets; owls and crows will feel at home there.”


Amid your rough times, your intense times, your catastrophic times, get your Hallelujah on, “knowing that your present sufferings are not work comparing with the glory this will be revealed” (Romans 8:18 (NIV).  Sing in faith, knowing that God will bring about righteousness.  In faith sing, knowing that there is no “comparison between the present hard times and the coming good times” (Romans 8:18 (MAG).  Right now, use the good smarts and wisdom God has given and make the right choices, determine God’s direction, knowing God works all things together for the good. Rejoice that every enemy will be defeated.


Another of God’s servants comes bursting into the scene.


Revelation 19:5 (MSG)

From the Throne came a shout, a command: Praise our God, all you his servants, All you who fear him, small and great!


Let the praises ring (Psalm 66:8), for salvation, glory, and power belong to God and now is the time for all creation to recognize it. For salvation a praise of gratitude that we have been saved from the clutches of the Dragon. For glory a praise of reverence, how awesome is our God in the beauty of His holiness (Psalm 96:9). For power a praise of trust for God has made true on all His promises. Look beyond the immediate, the circumstance, and the situation, and in hope see that you will successfully walk through the valley of the shadow of death because God loves you and has called you according to His purposes (Romans 8:28). The burden can be crushingly heavy, no good option to deal with the challenge but know that there is a reward for your fidelity.  Jesus said: to “count yourselves blessed every time people put you down or throw you out or speak lies about you to discredit me. What it means is that the truth is too close for comfort and they are uncomfortable. You can be glad when that happens—give a cheer, even!—for though they don't like it, I do! And all heaven applauds. And know that you are in good company” (Matthew 5:11-12 (MSG).


Revelation 19:6-8 (MSG)

Then I heard the sound of massed choirs, the sound of a mighty cataract, the sound of strong thunder: Hallelujah! The Master reigns, our God, the Sovereign-Strong! Let us celebrate, let us rejoice, let us give him the glory! The Marriage of the Lamb has come; his Wife has made herself ready. She was given a bridal gown of bright and shining linen. The linen is the righteousness of the saints.


Let the party begin.  Another Hallelujah this time for the reward of being loyal. Fidelity, integrity, perseverance, and endurance are now rewarded not only by being surrounded by good company but being part of the marriage of the Lamb to His Bride. The Old Testament uses the image of marriage to address God’s relationship to his people. The prophet Hosea hears God say “Then I’ll marry you for good—forever! I’ll marry you true and proper, in love and tenderness.  Yes. I’ll marry you and neither leave you nor let you go” (Hosea 2:19-20).  Isaiah proclaimed to the people: “For your Maker is your bridegroom, his name is God of the Angel Armies” (Isaiah 54:5). This is why idolatry is considered adultery. You are betrothed awaiting the celebration. This is also why apostasy is a horrible sin. You deliberately leave the betrothal.


Revelation 19:9-10 (MSG)

The Angel said to me, "Write this: 'Blessed are those invited to the Wedding Supper of the Lamb.' " He added, "These are the true words of God!"

I fell at his feet to worship him, but he wouldn't let me. "Don't do that," he said. "I'm a servant just like you, and like your brothers and sisters who hold to the witness of Jesus. The witness of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy."


Here is the fourth of the 7 beatitudes in Revelation.  The purpose of the Beatitudes is to remind the followers of Jesus of the reward awaiting them for their faithful endurance of the rough, intense, and catastrophic times. Recall the blessings, you are blessed by reading and doing, dying in the Lord is a blessing, being awake and living out your discipleship is a blessing and here getting that invite to the wedding celebration is a blessing.


We can think of the wedding supper of the Lamb as a victory feast. Isaiah prophesied: “God-of-the-Angel-Armies will throw a feast for all the people of the world, A feast of the finest foods, a feast with vintage wines, a feast of seven courses, a feast lavish with gourmet desserts” (Isaiah 25:6 (MSG).


Jesus mentions this celebration feast when the Roman centurion asks that Jesus heal his servant.  Jesus said he would accompany the man back to his home.  That by the way was a sign that God’s message through Jesus was for everybody. 


Oh, no," said the captain. "I don't want to put you to all that trouble. Just give the order and my servant will be fine. I'm a man who takes orders and gives orders. I tell one soldier, 'Go,' and he goes; to another, 'Come,' and he comes; to my slave, 'Do this,' and he does it."


10 Taken aback, Jesus said, "I've yet to come across this kind of simple trust in Israel, the very people who are supposed to know all about God and how he works. This man is the vanguard of many outsiders who will soon be coming from all directions—streaming in from the east, pouring in from the west, sitting down at God's kingdom banquet alongside Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Then those who grew up 'in the faith' but had no faith will find themselves out in the cold, outsiders to grace and wondering what happened."  (Matt 8:8-12 (MSG)


God’s kingdom banquet is the same event as the marriage supper of the Lamb. Are you in possession of the invitation? Only those who have bent their knee to the Lordship of Christ are given an invitation.  Bending the knee means you heard the message of the gospel, that all have sinned, fallen short, but Jesus by his execution made atonement for sin, and you believe in your heart and confess with your mouth this gospel, that atoning redemption is freely given to you. Bending the knee is an act of commitment, you are forsaking the old ego-driven way of life and you are embracing the teachings of Jesus, dedicating yourself to being His disciple. To those who maintain that commitment, they are sealed with the invitation.  So, do you possess an invitation? As we will read there are two feasts you can attend.  One is the wedding supper of the lamb, and the other you’re on the menu, it is called the Great Supper of God.  Friends, you don’t want to be bird food.  Bend that knee to Jesus today. Today is the day of salvation, don’t put it off, you don’t know when the door of grace will be closed, and no more invitations extended.


This entire chapter has been about worship.  John in his vision is so overwhelmed by the news of this Angel that he prostrates himself before this servant of God and immediately rebuked.  “Don’t do that,” the Angel tells John.  All servants, whether they are a Cherubim, an Arch Angel, or somebody like you and me are all just slaves of God.


The Angel tells John that it is also just a slave to God, one who like all believers holds to the witness of Jesus. The witness of Jesus is what He said and did, by his life and death, his commitment to the mission that the One He called Father sent Him on. Jesus’ testimony is that God is love, a love that seeks and saves the lost. To hold to the witness of Jesus is to believe everything that Jesus revealed. To hold to the witness of Jesus is what we mean by bending the knee to Christ. The Angel concludes his rebuke of John saying “The witness of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.” It might be best to understand that John is telling us that behind all the prophecies in the Old Testament, you will find that it is inspired by what Jesus accomplished. 


It is God, revealed to us as Father, Son, and Spirit that is to be worshiped.  Nothing else.


The demonic frogs have gathered those who will support the Beast.  The Beast and the False Prophet are ready to wage war. Are you ready for the great battle of Armageddon?  That’s what comes next, and that’s where we will start next time.


Can you take comfort in knowing that in the End, you will be praising God? We all go through rough, intense, and catastrophic times. They can cause doubts, definitely fears, and suffering. We can be assaulted by that question that has no answer—Why? Why didn’t God intervene? Why isn’t God intervening? Those are all legitimate questions, all part of a lament.  Faith tends to quiet those questions.  It has helped me in those times of difficulty to contemplate these first 10 verses of chapter 19, hallelujah.  They assure me that if I endure there will be a celebration of joy that will supersede every tear, heartbreak, and pain I am experiencing.  It doesn’t make the suffering stop, nor does it deny the reality of the situation, but just a drop of hope, that there in the End, things will be OK, that I will in all sincerity, be OK, is enough fuel to continue to trust.  Knowing that you have an invitation to the celebration helps you to maintain your commitment and continue to make the right choices.


Right now is the time to sing.  Sing your praise to the Lord. You’ve won.


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