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Revelation chp 15 - Hell the Unexpected Consequence of Holiness - JS Gillespie  

 

Although set in a future time of judgment and tribulation, chapter 15 of Revelation contains truths and insights too good to be left till the future. This is a chapter which shows us afresh of God's power to turn victims into victors and which demonstrates God's sovereign power over the wickedness of men. Men may plot and persecute to have God's people put out of this world but an exit from this world quickly becomes an entrance into the Glory of heaven under teh hand of a sovereign God!

We glimpse the Glory of the Divine character in chapter 15. Judgment emerges from an unexpected source here! Out of the sanctuary and the Divine Glory and presence the vials of God's wrath are carried and consecrated by angel's hands! Divine wrath and justice is displayed before the world as the awful and awsome consequence of Divine holiness.

Revelation chapter 15 vs 1 to 4 - The Sign The Sea The Song - JS Gillespie  

 

Revelation chapter 15 vs 1 to 4 traces the destiny of those who trusted the God of their strength, never flinching and refusing to let go until He became their salvation. As they stand upon the the crystal sea now mixed with the fires of affliction, they stand perpetual testimony to the God who is able to turn the victim into a victor. Here is the great secret of Christian trial and affliction that we have a God who is able to empower us to emerge butterfly like from the catastrophe of persecution and turmoil. The enemy in his hatred and cruelty may well have chased them to the brink of extinction at the edge of the sea but this was merely God's preamble to opening up the path before them for an eternal entrance to the habitation of God. They were like the Covenanter Martyrs of 1685, Corson and Hair; "Unknown till persecution dragged them into fame and chased them up to heaven"

What a God! What a Saviour! What a Lamb!

A message preached as part of our systematic study series on the book of Revelation by Dr J Stewart Gillespie

Revelation chp 14 vs 14 to 20 - How Long - To be Faithful Fearful and Fruitful - JS Gillespie  

Bible teaching from Revelation chapter 14 verses 14 to 20; the two judgments of Revelation chapter 14 of the world and of Israel. Man may be impatient for judgement, God is not! He has appointed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness. God does not merely react to sin! God is sovereign over man and works purpose through even a world in rebellion. We ought not to underestemate the sovereign power of a God who is able to bring good from the slavery and betrayal of Joseph, the murder by Moses and the rebellion of Jonah. After cries which echoe through the Psalms of David, the service of the disciples, the sanctuary of Daniel and the sousl of the saints of Revelation chapter 6; cries of "how long?" finally the answer is "now". Here is God's perfect judgment in God's time. From a systematic exposition of Revelation by Dr J Stewart Gillespie.

Revelation chapter 14 vs 6 to 13 - The Everlasting Gospel of the Mid Heavens - JS Gillespie  

 

Take a step down from the mid heaven of the lamb and the 144,000 gives a completely different view of the future, not for the redeemed but for those marked for judgement. The middle section of chapter 14 is a story of missed opportunities, misstaken allegiences and men marked for judgement. The everlasting gospel is declared, but symbolically out of reach of those upon the earth. This is a gospel declared in the mid heaven, a gospel of conviction but with no conversion of fear but no faith. Dissolving before the eyes of men is the delusion of safety in the crowd. There is no longer comfort and security in the demonically inspired Babylon, the world and it's systems have fallen, fallen and with it all who took shelter in it. A bible teaching message preached as part of our systematic series of studies in the book of Revelation - Dr J Stewart Gillespie, Bridgend Gospel Hall, New Cumnock. Graceinchrist.org

Revelation chapter 14 - A Letter Written A Song Sung - JS Gillespie  

Christian hymns, Old Testament Psalms (Psalm 2) and Biblical prophecies all look forward to Christ reigning in Zion; the Holy and royal mountain of Jerusalem. Well here He is; Christ in Zion, in Revelation chapter 14. John paints the picture, gives us a snapshot of Christ on mount Zion! It’s here He has finally arrived, but it's not what I would expect of:

  • The Son of God
  • The King of Kings
  • The Lord of Lords
  • Creator
  • Redeemer
  • Judge of all things
  • Miracle worker

It’s the picture I might anticipate of one who is:

  • Omnipotent
  • Omniscient
  • Omnipresent

“Yet have I set my King upon my Holy hill of Zion” (Psalm 2:6)

I wasn’t expecting to see a lamb there! Maybe a lion!

Yet the path from earth to heaven and glory, the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords has taken as a lamb.

That’s interesting that we should find the lamb on Mt Zion

We find the lamb in all sorts of places:

  • On the altar (Gen 22) – sacrifice
  • In the fire and flame (Ex 12) – suffering
  • In the mouth of the lion (1 Sam 17) – Satanic attack
  • Led to the slaughter (Isaiah 53)
  • Bearing away the sin of the world - As the Substitute

Finally we find the lamb here; on the throne (Revelation 4); in heaven (Revelation 14)

This path of the lamb by way of:

  • Sacrifice
  • Suffering
  • Satanic attack

Is the path followed by those whom we find here in heaven. The route to the destination is the same.

They have followed the lamb all the way to Zion.

Some claim that we ought not to be ‘prisoners to our past, it’s a lesson, not a life sentence.’ There is some truth in that, but not much!

The biblical view of our past is far higher than being ‘free from the prison’ of the past and the past is certainly no lesson, it is the real thing!

If the past is but a lesson for today and today is but a lesson for the future. Where is it that we put into practice these so called lessons? When do we actually graduate from school into the real world! This of course is the real world!

No doubt lessons should be learned but regarding our life as merely a lesson is way short of the profound depths which God attaches to our life here and now.

Our past is not a prison from which we ought to regard ourselves as liberated from, our past is

  • what in part moulds and shapes us and produces character in us (Romans 5:1ff).
  • Theatre in which is worked out our service for God, the race is run, and as such reward can follow on.
  • The arena of sin and error; a place where ripples extend out into eternity, to the judgment seat and to others

Our past is way more serious than a prison from which we might seek freedom.

Our past does indeed teach lessons, but it has eternal consequences for us and consequences for others, which we cannot ignore nor erase. Consequences not only of:

  • Education
  • Retribution
  • Reward

Once we face up to the reality of this, once we grasp the truth of this, this will lead us to:

  • Repentance
  • Redemption
  • Reward

As well as

  • Education

There is by far the greater path of:

  • Salvation

We are far more than prisoners of our past

We are products of our past

A past that is not merely a lesson in life but a past that is life itself, real life with ripples running off into eternity.

The 144,000 arrive in heaven, sounding like the lamb (14:2) with a “voice of many waters” and with a “new song” that no man could learn.

Anyone could read the lyrics but they could not learn the song

Anyone could learn words but they could not learn the song!

Anyone could follow a tune but they could not learn this song!

Many could play the music but they could not learn the song.

This was a song played on the heart, not only upon the harp (v2)

Like Christ who ‘learned obedience by the things which He suffered’

Learning is a change brought about from experience

At times in life we complain, we are resentful, become bitter, get discouraged.

At times we desire an:

  • Easier life
  • Smoother path
  • To take it a little easier
  • Put our feet up
  • A bit less hassle

This path is the path to mount Sinai

This is the path which brought the Son of God to Glory

This song was and is the product of their lives.

This is the song that makes us sound like Christ!

  • Bass notes of suffering
  • The treble clef of lifes melody
  • The sharps of excitement
  • The flats of disappointment
  • The rests of recuperation
  • The repeats of routine
  • The majors of life’s dominant themes
  • The minors of less significant

 

We may be an epistle written and read as Paul reminds us but our life also produces a song that is sung and nothing need be wasted.

From a systematic bible teaching series from the letter of Revelation by Dr J Stewart Gillespie, preached at the Bridgend Gospel Hall, New Cumnock. Free to download messages and free to view online. 

 

Revelation chapter 14 - The Heart - The Hymn book of Heaven - Faskally 2022 - M6 - JS Gillespie   

Great songs are born of deep experience. Some of the richest treasures of human expression arise from our deepest emotions of love, both fulfilled and frustrated. From lessons learned in deep anguish arise the expressions of heart uniquely tuned in the life and experience of every believer. To heaven these 144 000 bring a song so unique that only their life and their experience is able to give expression to it. 

Dr J Stewart Gillespie at Faskally House Families Week 2022 - Tell me There's a Heaven. 

Revelation chp 7 - Heaven - Better than we Hoped, Closer than we Realised - Faskally 2022 - M5 - JS Gillespie  

Heaven is the expected conclusion to the life of faith. The path to heaven is fragranced with the presence and provision of the God of heaven. As pilgrims heavenward, the one to whom we go is the one who goes with us. We drink of the well of the living waters of Christ, as he promised to the Samaritan woman in John chapter 4. We hear His word of revelation and enjoy an ongoing relationship with the Saviour day by day. When heaven finally comes the summit is to the believer no surprise. With every step upward we feel the strain in our muscles, the tension in our tendons, the cool dew condensing on our hair, the air becoming thinner and the sun a little brighter. Heaven is the conclusion to a life of faith. We know the way because we know the person.  
 

From a series of messages on the theme of "Tell me There's a Heaven" given at Faskally Families Week in 2022 by Dr J Stewart Gillespie

The Book with 7 Seals - Revelation 5 - Faskally 2002 - M4 - JS Gillespie  

 

Trace back the fuse wire to the detonator that triggered the pouring out of the 7 vials of judgment, the fall of Babylon the Great, the battle of Armageddon, the sounding of the 7 trumpets, and the opening of the 7 seals, will lead you to this book in the hand of God in Revelation chapter 5. Whatever this book is, it contains the secret of all subsequent judgments and catastrophes in the book of Revelation which are to befall the world. Whatever it is, this book is important. Despite the fact that loosening the seals to open the book leads to global environmental, economic and spiritual melt down following in the wake of war, famine, disease and demonic attack, this is a risk worth taking.   

The 4th message in a series of studies in the book of Revelation given at Faskally Family week 2022 on the theme of "Tell me There's a Heaven" by Dr J Stewart Gillespie.

The Lion of the Tribe of Judah - Revelation chapter 5 - M3 - 17th October Faskally 2022  

 

The lion of the tribe of Judah reigns sovereign and supreme from the throne of the Universe in Revelation chapter 5. His sovereignty has suffered and sacrificed through time and humanity. To the throne of heaven He brings Divine right and appointment fused with moral right and authority. He is the King who wore the crown of thorns ever before He bore the royal diadem. His reign in Righteousness is above fault and criticism, He was both given this right to reign, and He died for this right to reign. As the Lamb He concludes His retribution with redemption, His purpose in time for the universe collectively and for us individually will not be revealed in the raw power of destruction but rather every pain, each sorrow, every disappointment, all trials and affliction ultimately work together for good and Glory. 


The 3rd message given at Faskally House Family Week in 2022, by Dr J Stewart Gillespie on the theme of

"Tell me there's a Heaven" - studies in the book of Revelation. 

Revelation chapter 4 - Glory beyond the Sea of Glass - M2 - JS Gillespie - Faskally 16th October 2022  

The anticipated ecstasy of hymns, the crystal sea pictures the absolute, transparent holiness of God. Solomon was commissioned to reflect the pattern in the sea of his temple, provided for the cleansing of the priesthood. In this solid sea of glass, washing from sin and defilement is eternally out of the question. Nothing that defiles can enter into the dwelling place of God. Access to God's Heaven has as it's requirement holiness. It is a condition of entry and not a consequence. Absolute purity, the kind of righteousness that only Jesus Christ can provide, purchased by His blood and freely given to those willing to receive salvation by faith alone.  

This crystal sea marks the boundary conditions of heaven. It is both heaven's floor and earth's ceiling. It is the extent of man's experience of the Divine when sought without Christ; a barrier of solid holiness.  
Revelation chapter 5 paints a picture of the character and nature of the God of heaven: 

 

  1. Lion like in His Sovereignty 
  2. Calf like in His salvation 
  3. Man like in His incarnation 
  4. Eagle like in the transcendence of His Spirit 


Get a glimpse of Glory 
Get a glimpse of God

From a series of messages presented at Faskally House Family Week 2022 by Dr J Stewart Gillespie on the theme:

"Tell me There's a Heaven" 

Heaven - A Place of no Surprises - Faskally 2022 - M1 - JS Gillespie - 15102022  

It has taken 4000 years for the Spirit of God to introduce us to heaven. Heaven is a place of many surprises, but perhaps the greatest of all surprises is that there are so few surprises! Heaven has a door; a door we know of well from John's gospel. Heaven opens with a voice familiar; that of Jesus Christ. Heaven is the throne room of God. Upon the throne of heaven we see one like a Jasper and Sardine stone; one who is the Son of God's right hand and the Son of His mother's sorrow. The throne is surrounded by a rainbow of covenant keeping glory; echoing the one who is life and light.

Here is heaven.

Here is the God of heaven.

This is the God we know.

This is Jesus Christ.

The first of 6 studies in the book of Revelation presented at Faskally House, families week in 2022, by Dr J Stewart Gillespie.

The Mark of the Beast the Tech behind the Lie - Revelation chp 13 vs 11 to 18 - JS Gillespie - 11102022  

Revelation chapter 13 is set in a day not too distant!

This second beast arises out of the earth as opposed to the sea (13:1). 

The first beast we have categorised / identified as the AntiChrist on the basis of: 

  1. Wild beast description (13:1) by way of contrast with the description of the Lord Jesus as the lamb. 
  2. His incarnation in arising up out of the depths of the sea (13:1) in contrast to the one who came down from God (John 6:33,38) 
  3. 7 fold names of blasphemy (13:1) in marked contrast to those names associated with the 7 fold spirit of God, described of the Lord Jesus in Isaiah 11: 2 and ascribed to the Lord Jesus in Revelation 5:6. 
  4. His mouth “speaking great things” (13:5) that also quite strikingly contrasts with the “gracious words which proceeded out of His mouth” (Luke 4:22) 
  5. The duration of his reign of 3 ½ years which compares to the 3 ½ of public service of the Lord Jesus as a humble servant. 
  6. AntiSermon on the mount of 13:6, as the beast opens his mouth in blasphemy against God, His place on earth and His place in heaven. The complete opposite of what we find from the lips of Christ in Matthew 5:2; 6:9. 

The first beast then we characterised as the AntiChrist. He had the object of distracting us from Christ, providing us with an alternative, a Satanic alternative opposite to the Christ of God.That of course has always been the object and purpose of Satan, to provide an alternative Christ, an antichrist, anti in: 

  • Character 
  • Message 
  • Purpose 

The second beast is intimately tied into the mission of the Antichrist (13:12). His purpose is not so much to provide the lie; that has already been done, but to get us believing the lie, subscribing to the lie and under the power of the lie. 

This second beast is referred to as the false prophet in Revelation 19:20. 

He is not only false of course but in verse 11 he is DANGEROUS; dangerously deceptive. The second beast looks superficially, to the passing glance, like a lamb, although intriguingly he looks like a lamb in rather peculiar way. That feature of the beast which connects him to, that echoes of the lamb, is perhaps the least lamb like feature of the lamb, the horns! You won't find any reference to that feature of the lamb in the OT. The closest perhaps, is the reference to God providing Himself a lamb in Genesis 22. When Abraham turns there is the provision for the sacrifice, caught by it’s horns in the thicket, but the language is changed from lamb to ram. The horn is symbolic of strength and power in the Old Testament. The power of this beast however is unassuming, maybe even strangely attractive. His power is disguised lamb like as non-threatening, benign and perhaps even kindly. This is the power behind deception. This beast, whilst we appreciate his power, can be trusted because, well quite clearly he is acting in our best interests! We can trust him! He is the master propagandist. He is powerful and dangerous. His power seems to be benign, beneficent. He has managed to convince a lost world that they can trust him! Trust me, I’m a devil. 

You don’t need to look too far to get a flavour of that today, religious leaders who project themselves as warm, friendly, with your best interest at heart and in the process get you to swallow a lie hook line and sinker. 

There is currently circulating on Facebook and You Tube a video with 3 million views, fronted by a benign and friendly looking Buddhist monk advising us of 3 things we need to know, one of which was ‘don’t be a prisoner to your past, the past is just a lesson not a life sentence.’ 

That seems to be, on the surface quite a warm and helpful statement, encouraging people not to be hindered by burdens in the past they cannot alter. But of course it contains the seed of a most profound lie and it fails to stand up to logical scrutiny. 

It’s illogical – if the past is but a lesson for the present, then logically the present is a lesson for the future, which begs the question a lesson for what? For life? When does the living come if this is but a lesson. The reality is that the past and present and future are no mere lessons to be learned and moved on from. By all means we must learn lessons from our mistakes in the past. The subtle twist brings in the most profound lie. We learn lessons from the past and in the past but the past itself is not a lesson. The past is our life. The past has consequences for us, what we sow we reap. Consequences for others in time and for us in eternity, ultimately, we receive the ‘due reward of our deeds.’ 

We are accountable for our past and our past will be judged by God. It is no simple matter to learn the lesson, dismiss the past as a mere lesson and move on. That denies 

  • accountability for and 
  • judgement of and 
  • salvation from sin. 

This second beast is dangerous and deceptive. 

What is the nature of this apparent miracle? 

On surface he produces an image / a statue like perhaps that of Nebuchadnezzar and then make it live – that would be a miracle. It would indeed be a miracle! Comparable to the miracle of creation. This is very unlikely. 

To God uniquely is imputed the power to give life. We have that truth in Creation.

  • “in Him we live and move and have our being” (Acts 17:28) 
  • “in Him is life and that life is the light of men” 
  • So much so, come John’s Gospel, it is the fact that Christ is able to make alive that John uses as a proof of the Deity of Christ. 

Come the replication of the miracles of Moses, the magicians of Pharaoh seemed to have a real problem in turning dust into lice, in producing life from the dust (Exodus 8:18). How come Satan can do it now but not then? 


The word here for life is a bit unusual in verse 15. It is not the word for a living organism, animate with motion and activity ‘zoe’ but rather “pneuma”. This false prophet, manages to take a man made object and impute a spirit to it. By analogy to God’s creation of Adam we recall that God breathed into Adam the breath of lifes and Adam became a living soul then perhaps what we have here is a man made artificial entity empowered by the spirit of the false prophet. As strange as that may sound that is not out with the realms of possibility. 

Man cannot create life but he can transfer his life force or spirit to a previously inanimate object. 

The story begins back around 1999 with a Prof Miguel Nicolelis creating a Brain Computer Interface. Probes were inserted into the brain, which measured brain action potentials and electrical activity. Some very clever computer analysis was able to anticipate which muscles and movements these electrical activities triggered. He then got a monkey to play a computer game with a joy stick whilst that brain computer interface was reading the monkey's brain.  He then disconnected the joystick and the monkey was able to control the screen and computer with mere thought read by the brain computer interface. 

Professor Kevin Warwick, professor of Cybernetics at the university of Reading, used an implant into his nervous system in 2002 to control a robotic arm. What was interesting was that he added a further dimension to this by making use of the internet, so that he moved the robotic arm in a different continent. His spirit in a sense animated the inanimate object. 

Currently an Elon Musk funded company in California – Neuralink is experimenting with a neural brain implant, about the size of a £1 coin, inserted into a hole hollowed out of the skull, to which is attached 1024 fine electrically conducting channels. The neuralink has inductive, wireless charging and megabyte wireless transfer speeds. These channels pick up the action potentials, the electrical activity of the brain. Complex and clever computer decoding is able to tie those patterns of electrical signals to the physical movements which they cause. Musk’s neuralink group were able to use the brain signals from a monkey to play ping pong! 

We are also the first generation to live in the era when we no longer need to doubt the possibility of the fulfilment of verses 16 and 17, nor need we greatly speculate as to how this could be possible. 

You can order one over the internet today. 

British Polish company Walletmor has now gone into commercial production of these devices just a few months ago. It uses the same technology as is in your contactless NFC payment system in your mobile phone. 

“The microchip implants that let you pay with your hand” BBC Website 2022 

Cost euros: 249.00 

The technology referenced in Revelation chapter 13 is already with us. 

How long before the antichrist and false prophet are likewise with us?

The Secrets of the AntiChrist Revealed - Revelation chapter 13 vs 1 to 10 - JS Gillespie  

 

As the king of counterfeit and the master mimic, Satan parallels and contorts the work and ministry of Jesus Christ, into his own fake imitation; a Satanic image to worship, the ultimate deflection away from genuine devotion and affection. The roots of this supreme distraction spread deep, drawing their caustic sap to the final shoots of one supreme manifestation in the AntiChrist. Amusement has fulfilled it's unthinking purpose for generations, lives have been successfully sapped of all success, years frittered unfruitful, time wasted and human lifespans discarded into the dustbins of purposeless unproductivity. A wasted and worthless life is a worthwhile goal for this antichrist infused world over which Satan as prince presides. 

In the end, all of these roots will finally feed one shoot, the AntiChrist, the beast from the sea of Revelation chapter 13, Satan's man of Sin on earth. His worship will be volitional, devotion by deception! In the character catalogue of Revelation chapter 13 he attempts to emulate by inversion the character of Christ. The lamb becomes the beast (Revelation 13:1); his incarnation ascends from the depths in stark contrast to Jesus who descends from above, an anointing with the 7 fold Spirit of God in Isaiah 11:2 is parodied by 7 heads of blasphemy in the beast (13:1). The 3 and a half year ministry of Christ is mocked by a 3 and a half year reign of the beast (13:5) and the Sermon on the Mount is parodied by a mouth opening in blasphemy (13:6) rather than blessing (Matthew 5:2ff). 

Here is Satan's Antichrist, here is the destiny to which the compass of this world is pointing, passive distraction and distracted devotion to a delusion, 180 degrees from Jesus Christ, our only source of hope and peace. 

A message preached by Dr J Stewart Gillespie as part of a systematic series of bible studies in the book of Revelation, free to listen or view online. 

Graceinchrist.org

Revelation chp 13 vs 1 to 10 - Who is the AntiChrist? Where will we find the Antichrist?  

 

Revelation chapter 13 details for us the rise of the Satan inspired Beast from the sea. He arises against the same background given to us in Daniel's prophecy of chapter 7. From the area of the Mediterranean emerges a monstrous beast like leader; autocratic and powerful, absolute in his authority, comparable to the lion like Babylon of old (Revelation 13:2). Geographically his origins appear skewed towards that of the footprint of the bear (Revelation 13:2); a territory more similar to that of the Medo-Persian empire; that of Turkey, Greece, Iran, Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan and Egypt. Taking his inspiration from the Greek Leopard, 4 wings and super charged in speed, his Kingdom rises rapidly and spreads quickly. 

It is this same individual whom Daniel refers to as the little horn in Daniel chapter 7. Point for point the 2 individuals are identical:

 

 

Revelation – The 1st Beast Chapter 13 

Daniel – The little horn  Chapter 7 

1

Referred to as “a beast” (v1) 

Referred to as “a beast” V10 

2

Given power by the dragon (v2) 

(Daniel 8:24) - Given power by another

3

Given “a mouth speaking great things” (v5) 

“a mouth speaking great things” (7:8) 

4

Reign ran for 42 mouths (v5) 

“time, times and a dividing of time” (7:25) 

5

Blasphemed name of God (v6) 

“speak great words against the most High” (7:25) 

Made war with the saints (v7) 

“made war with the saints” (7:21)

 

The importance of this identification of the first beast of Revelation chapter 13 and Daniel's little horn of chapter 7, lies in the additional details which Daniel's prophecy furnish us regarding the origin of the little horn or beast. It is Daniel who reveals to us that the little horn or beast will arise from the fourth of Daniel's beasts: that beast representing the Roman Empire. This of course poses something of a problem for us today as this is an empire long gone. The western part of the Roman Empire fell into obscurity in the 6th century AD with the Eastern part of the Byzantine Empire persisting until the 15th century. It is perhaps from this eastern portion of the empire we can look to find the beast arising; from the footprint of the Medo Persian bear. 

How can the beast arise from an empire long gone? Revelation chapter 13 points us to a head once wounded to death but now revived (13:3). It is from the revived, probably eastern portion of the Roman empire that we can look to find the beast arising. 

An excerpt taken from systematic bible teaching given on chapter 13 of the book of Revelation by Dr J Stewart Gillespie: "Revelation chp 13 vs 1 to 10 - Who is the AntiChrist? Where will we find the Antichrist?"

 

Revelation chapter 13 vs 1 to 2 - The Rise of the AntiChrist - JS Gillespie  

 

From the lands of the Mediterranean Sea there will arise a Beast, the AntiChrist, the Man of Sin. Echoing features of empires past he will move quickly like the armies and empire of Alexander the Great, as pictured in the Leopard. His geographical domain is likely to be that of the Medo-Persian Empire of centuries ago, standing bear like, with his feet gripping the lands of Turkey, Iran and Iraq. This is Satan's one world dictator, a man with universal political (Revelation 13:2) and spiritual authority (Revelation 13:8) over the worlds. It is interesting to speculate how such a universal dictatorship could arise. The world of Revelation chapter 13, whilst echoed by events in the past century is very unlike the political landscape we see today. This is a world decimated by judgment, wars, disease and famine. between the judgments of the fourth scroll and 6th trumpet, one half of the world's population has been destroyed. Food production has been decimated by poisoned seas and rivers, nuclear explosions have polluted and destroyed productive agriculture and lands. This is a post-apocalyptic landscape, the leadership of which has been grasped, probably out of necessity to restore law and order and distribute evenly what resources there are. Here is Satan's finest hour, achieving his goal from the garden of Eden. This is his takeover of God's creation. Satan's Kingdom has come! Whilst this may be Satan's greatest moment, it is undoubtedly earth's most awful moment. A message preached as part of our series of systematic bible studies in the book of Revelation. Dr J Stewart Gillespie graceinchrist.org

Revelation chapter 12 - The Fury and the Flood - JS Gillespie  

Perhaps like myself you find the book of Revelation somewhat daunting with it's ultiplicity of interpretations which is  somewhat off putting! Perhaps you can identify with the sentiment of one writer who quipped that there was only one person who understood Revelation and he is at home in the glory!
It is a book of complex symbols and language.
The subject matter; doesn’t really make for easy reading and is not overtly comforting, at least on the surface that is! This is perhaps typified by the transmission of the Greek title for Revelation “ἀποκάλυψις” into the English language, and is now used for catastrophe and disaster in epic proportions. 

Revelation is indeed a book of catastrophe and disaster for the world: 

Revelation is a boook containing the extremes of: 

  1. Personalities – Christ and the Devil 
  2. Places – Heaven and Hell 
  3. Problems – global and eternal destruction 

7 seals 
7 trumpets 
3 woes 
7 vials 
4th Seal sees ¼ of the world’s population destroyed 

6th trumpet witnesses 1/3 of the world’s population destroyed! By the time we reach chapter 12, at least ½ of the world’s population has been wiped out! It’s not a cheery read! 

Don’t let that put you off! 

Ignore the book of Revelation at your peril! 

There is at least one great reason not to ignore this book: 

Revelation at least in part deals with the extremes of disaster and catastrophe! 

If you believe, as I do that God is: 

  1. Sovereign over the problems of life “all things work together for good” 
  2. Sufficient in His grace “my grace is sufficient for you” 
  3. Supreme in His power “all power is given unto me…” 
  4. Solution to all of our problems “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.” (1 Corinthians 10:13) 

Then in these extreme experiences of: 

  • Trial 
  • Testing 
  • Suffering 
  • Persecution 
  • Problems 
  • Discouragement 
  • Difficulty 

We see God’s extreme solutions! 

If God is able to deal with the extremes, He is surely sufficient for our problems and our needs too!

In Revelation chapter 12 people experience: 

  1. Personal Failure – The Flesh 
  2. Satanic Fury – The Devil 
  3. Persecutory Flood – The World 

God has His provision and His solution in the extremes of these conditions and experiences! 

  1. Fury of the Devil 
  2. Flood from the World 
  3. Failure of the Flesh 

All 3 are inter-related! 

It is the fury of Satan which directly causes the flood of persecution from the world (vs12-15). 

It is the failure of the flesh that hinders victory over Satan and gives the accuser fuel for his fire (v10-11). 

Power to overcome the accuser (v11) holds the key to their personal victory! 

The flood of persecution is the product of Satanic fury! 

Israel couldn’t see that of course in Revelation chapter 12, but nonetheless the spiritual battle was happening above them, over them and they were caught in the crossfire between heaven and hell. There will be many spiritual battles of which we are unaware but feel the shockwaves in our lives and souls.

Cosider the fury of Satan revealed here in Revelation chapter 12:

Know your adversary 

Don’t imitate his character 

Note the description of his character: 

  1. Destroyer (v4) cf. John 10 
  2. Deceiver (v9) 
  3. Accuser (v10) 

Satan characterised as deceiver. 

Deception often linked with intelligence! It is so here of course. 

Intelligence is often required to pass off a good deception! 

Spoof emails and phone calls, fake social media accounts, malicious phone calls etc! 

Normally intelligence employs deception for the goal of personal gain. They want what you have! For Satan though the scenario is different! 

Satan is under no delusion that he could stand ultimately to gain from these deceptions (12:12), he knows that his time is short. Ultimate gain is not on the horizon for him! 

What could possibly motivate him? 

The very essence of Satanic character: malicious envy! 

Satan isn’t deceiving to personally profit from it but rather that you might lose, that you might be destroyed. This is malicious, destructive, satanic, envy!

Cf John 10:10 

Sufficient for Satan to drag you down, bring you down, get you down and keep you down! He will strive to ruin you at every turn! 

Flood of persecution in the world 

Satan having fallen from heaven (12:9), turns upon the people of God. 

Satan falls from heaven to earth and to hell. 

It is interesting that as Satan falls further and further, the glory of Christ fills the void, as the morning star and as King of Kings and Lord of Lords on the earth. 

When the world and the Devil send the flood God always has His refuge for His people 

“And a man shall be as a hiding place from the wind, and a covert from the tempest; as rivers of water in a dry place, as the shadow of a great rock in a weary land.” Isaiah 32:2 

For: 

Jacob and his sons in famine there was provision in Egypt 
Moses on the run as a fugitive there was refuge in the backside of the desert. 
Israel caught between the armies of Pharoah and the Red Sea, there was a path through to the promised land 
Samaria in the famine and siege of 2 Kings chp 7 – respite and refuge comes through the actions of 4 lepers at the gate of the city. 
David there was the cave of Adullam 
Jonah there was the provision of the whale 
Elijah a morsel of meal in the widow of Zarephath’s house 
Elisha a place in the home of the Shunammite 

For: 

Israel a way through the red sea and ultimately into the promised land 
Elijah a way up 
Jonah a way down and out of the depths 
Daniel a way out of the lion’s den 
Thief on the cross a way into heaven 
Noah a way over the flood 

God is always able to provide a refuge in the storm, always able, since His refuge is a person! 

“And a man shall be as a hiding place from the wind, and a covert from the tempest; as rivers of water in a dry place, as the shadow of a great rock in a weary land.” Isaiah 32:2 

If a man is a hiding place, then that hiding place, isn’t restricted to a place, but is always available as a person! 

Sometimes the means of that provision comes from the most unexpected of sources! 

The unlikely gentile widow 
The unexpected provision from Joseph, a son sold as a slave 
The terrifying whale 
An unassuming little maid of Naaman 
An improbable coin in a fishes mouth 

Failure of the flesh 

The failure of the flesh give substance to the accuser, adds fuel to the fire and keeps the believer down, hinders their recovery. 

There is overcoming victory (v11) by

  • Blood of the lamb 

Provision for forgiveness and recovery 

  • Word of Testimony 

Power of a changed life 

  • Total commitment 

Proof of nothing being more important than the Lord

 

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Revelation chapter 12 vs 1 to 9 - The Rise and Fall of Satan - JS Gillespie   

 

The prophetic book of Revelation, that gives us a glimpse into the future for this world, also contains a few unanticipated surprises! 

Revelation also gives us a glimpse into: 

Heaven (chapters 4 + 5) 
Hell (chapter 9) 
Satan (chapter 12) 

There are not that many passages of the scriptures that deal with the Satanic personality, although in many places we perceive his influence. 

Revelation chapter 12 gives us a glimpse into the: 

  • Destiny 
  • Disaster 
  • Demise 
  • Desires 

Of Satan 

In chapter 12 we learn to recognise Satan as God reckons with Satan. 

We gain a glimpse into the ultimate destiny of Satan elsewhere in the scriptures although we do have to join the dots and put the pieces together. 

The man of the Gadarenes – those who follow Satan and who are obedient to him, must yet bow to a supreme authority, that of Christ! That does not bode well for Satan! Their end is in the Abyss 
The testing of Christ in the wilderness – we often perhaps reflect on the character and nature of that temptation, the opportunism of Satan after 40 days of fasting, Satan’s misuse of the word of God and the means of defeating Satan with the sword of the Spirit and the Word of God! One simple of aspect of the testing of Christ in the wilderness that we ought not to miss of course 
“Satan hath desired to have you that he may sift you as wheat” (Luke 22:31) We note the attack on Peter, but perhaps we ought also to note the ultimate victory of the Spirit of God in the life of Peter, as Peter knows recovery and restoration and becomes stronger for the experience! 

Satanic activity is sovereignly controlled and attenuated 

We need perhaps to put these pieces together to see the whole story. 

Here in verse 1 we have a symbol of Satanic destiny 

Sometimes looking back we see a significance that perhaps we don’t see at the time. 

“moon under her feet” 

The glory of Israel is in the sun (v1), the brightest and most glorious natural object which is known to us. 

The moon is under her feet; the moon once worshipped by Israel, the moon that rules the night is under her feet! Israel has dominion and victory over the one who rules the night. Victory is guaranteed! The end is declared from the beginning!

 

Notice the principle of spiritual gravity which we find here in Revelation chapter 12, seen so clearly in the rise and fall of Satan, but which we can also perceive in the rest of the word of God.

You can pretty accurately predict the destiny of a personality from the impact they make on the lives of others. You can predict an individuals destiny from the direction they give to others,

If you want to know where they are going, look at where they are taking others! 

Where they are sending others is where they are heading themselves. 

Pharaoh – cast the children into the river Nile (Ex 1:22), into a watery grave is where Pharaoh and his armies ended up! (Exodus 14:28) 
Ahab and Jezebel – lead the nation into Baal worship and the pursuit of the demonic, unfaithful to their God. Ultimately Jezebels subjects proved equally as unfaithful to her and that was her undoing. The authority of God and His commandments which she undermined and destroyed, was the foundation of all human authority and order, as is the case today. 
Belshazzer led his people into blaspheming the items of the temple; he and many of his subjects died under Divine judgment. 
Elimelech led his family to Moab and he died there. 

Consider also on the positive side: 

It was the apostle Paul who lifted so many up, and led so many to Christ. Is it not so appropriate that he himself was taken up into the 3rd heaven! What about the apostle John? It is John who is the disciple of love, life and light. It is John in his gospel who leads us to the Deity and glory of the Lord Jesus. How apt it is that it is John who gives us the book of Revelation, leading us into heaven itself! Here is the principle of spiritual gravity!

We can predict a personal destiny from the direction they point other. 

It is difficult to take others or direct others in a direction we are not travelling in ourselves. 

We can predict a persons destiny form the direction they give to others. Here we have this principle worked out in the spiritual realm. It is Satan with his malevolent influence who draws down a third of the stars from heaven to earth. You could predict his end I am sure from this! After the angelic host are cast down (12:4) Satan follows the same trajectory, downward to the earth (12:9)!

Notice also in Revelation chapter 12 the principle of spiritual gravity:

It was no coincidence that as Moses descended Mount Sinai with the two tables of law written by the finger of God, that Satan had made a pre-emptive strike and that waiting there for Moses was a pre-constructed golden calf!  

It was no coincidence that placed next to the throne of Egypt were two Satanically inspired magicians; Jannes and Jambres, ready to sway the mind of Pharaoh as the voice of God echoed throughout the land in plague and pestilence.  

It was no coincidence that Tobiah and Sanballat were on hand to discourage and to attempt to destroy the walls of Jerusalem as Nehemiah fulfilled his commission to rebuild for God!  

Here too in Revelation chapter 12 we perceive exactly the same process at work. As the time approaches for Israel to bring forth Messiah; "when the fullness of the time was come..." in Revelation 12:2; God was ready. At that moment so too was Satan ready; ready with an attempt at annihilation, with the slaughter of the innocents, ready with persecution, temptation in the wilderness, rejection from the synagogue, isolation from society, false accusations, and ultimate execution at Calvary!  

If we share the life of that same Saviour we too can anticipate to share the unwanted attention of Satan! Be ready! Be prepared, but not only for attack, but ultimately for victory through Christ!  

From our systematic bible study series in the book of Revelation

Dr J Stewart Gillespie

GraceinChrist

 

Revelation chapter 12 vs 1 to 9 - When God is ready the Devil is Ready - JS Gillespie   

It was no coincidence that as Moses descended Mount Sinai with the two tables of law written by the finger of God, that Satan had made a pre-emptive strike and that waiting there for Moses was a pre-constructed golden calf! 

It was no coincidence that placed next to the throne of Egypt were two Satanically inspired magicians; Jannes and Jambres, ready to sway the mind of Pharaoh as the voice of God echoed throughout the land in plague and pestilence. 

It was no coincidence that Tobiah and Sanballat were on hand to discourage and to attempt to destroy the walls of Jerusalem as Nehemiah fulfilled his commission to rebuild for God! 

Here too in Revelation chapter 12 we perceive exactly the same process at work. As the time approaches for Israel to bring forth Messiah; "when the fullness of the time was come..." in Revelation 12:2; God was ready. At that moment so too was Satan ready; ready with an attempt at annihilation, with the slaughter of the innocents, ready with persecution, temptation in the wilderness, rejection from the synagogue, isolation from society, false accusations, and ultimate execution at Calvary! 

If we share the life of that same Saviour we too can anticipate to share the unwanted attention of Satan! Be ready! Be prepared, but not only for attack, but ultimately for victory through Christ!  

Part of a series of messages preached from the book of Revelation by Dr J Stewart Gillespie at the Bridgend Gospel Hall, New Cumnock .

(this recording was prematurely stopped due to a technical error)

Revelation chp 12 vs 1 to 5 - How to be on the Winning Side - JS Gillespie  

 

God is in the business of rendering men and women unrecognisable. He is the God who transformed Jacob from a thief and a conman to the judge of the 12 tribes of Israel. He is the God who made a sovereign out of a shepherd, a priest out of a murderer, a law giver out of a law breaker, a philanthropist out of a fraudster! It is little surprise that the recurrently dysfunctional Israel appears here in Revelation chapter 12, clothed with the most glorious of all natural objects (1 Co 15:41; Rev 21:23), the sun. 

The woman of Revelation chapter 12 may appear unrecognisable, but Israel she is. She is the nation who gave rise to Messiah, whose remnant perceivers through the days of tribulation and who ultimately will rise to the place of pre-eminence amongst the nations of the earth, for which God had always fitted her. Her secret of triumph and victory is the same as ours. The battle she faces is part and parcel of the same cosmic struggle as ours too. We may at times be oblivious to the spiritual battle unfolding behind the scenes but we ignore it at our peril. On rare occasions we gain an insight and get a glimpse into what is actually taking place in the spiritual realm.

  • The deliverance from Egypt was effected by Moses but in the midst of Satanic opposition (Ex 7:11, 22).
  • The trials of Job were only the tangible expression of a conversation between Satan and God. 
  • The prayers of Daniel were hindered by the same cosmic conflict 
  • The person of God's Son knew the trial in the wilderness and the attack on the cross
  • The denial of Peter proceeded from the attack of the wicked one 

In all of these cases, God's people triumphed and did so glorious, having discovered the secret of being on the winning side. It was their connection with Christ that brought certainty and victory (Revelation 12:2,5). The victory which is His becomes ours. 

From a series of bible teaching messages preached from the book of Revelation at the Bridgend Gospel Hall, New Cumnock by Dr J Stewart Gillespie.

Revelation chp 11 vs 14 to 19 - 5 Good Reasons to Worship and Everything going Well isn't one of Them - JS Gillespie  

 

A surgical incision into the closing section of Revelation chapter 11, reveals an unexpected heart beating at it's centre! After 7 seals and 6 trumpets and a third woe pending, this section gravitates around a nucleus of worship (Rev 11:17). This may seem to some a surprising conclusion to death, disease, catastrophe, global conflict and demonic attack upon the earth! Yet we ought not to be surprised at all. It was:

  • After Israel apostatised in worshipping the golden calf and the tables of the law were smashed that Moses worshipped
  • After Job had seen the death of his family, the destruction of his home and the decimation of his wealth that Job worshipped
  • Surrounded by the apocalyptic destruction of Jerusalem, the wall and the temple that Ezra worshipped 
  • On the storm tossed boat with their life in jeopardy that the disciples worshipped
  • Possessed by a legion of soul wrenching demons that the Gaderene worshipped 
  • Whilst he was dying and leaning on his staff that Jacob worshipped

Revelation chapter 11 verses 14 to 19 give us five good reasons to worship and everything going well with the world and our lives is not one of them! We can rejoice that God is in control of:

  • The woes that befall the world - ordered and announced by Him
  • The world and it's kingdoms 
  • The wicked and their judgment 
  • The reward of the godly 
  • The worship of the one true and living God 

His word is settled forever in heaven. Despite what we may perceive as the chaos and catastrophe of the past we cannot on that basis predict the plans of God! 

Revelation chp 11 vs 1 to 13 - The Last Revival - JS Gillespie  

 

 

Grace upon grace, God has poured out on a fallen world. Generation after generation, God adds to His grace. It is almost as if century upon century God is declaring that He is not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance (2 Peter 3:9). By the time we reach Revelation chapter 11 many a mercy has moved towards man. God's dispensations or administrations have rolled through creation, conscience, government, law, grace and tribulation. In each movement of the Divine hand God calls men to repentance and to Himself. 

Here in Revelation chapter 11, God brings all of His movements of mercy to a pinnacle. The miracles of Moses, the signs and wonders of Elijah (11:5-6), the plagues of blood and drought, the power of the Spirit of God (11:4) and all under the shadow of the cross, rain down upon man. Some respond, a remnant turn to give Glory to the God of heaven (11:13). 

Tragically many reject the message of God. With even greater catastrophe they confuse the message as the product of the messenger and not as the revelation of God. Gloating and glorying over their corpses, the product of the satanic attack of the Beast, the rejoicing of the world is premature. God is still on His throne and 3 and a half days into their death, resurrection power raises them again from the dead. 

A study in Revelation chapter 11 from our systematic series of expository bible studies in the book of Revelation. 

Yours by Grace in Christ

Dr J Stewart Gillespie

Revelation chp 11 vs 1 to 6 - Gods Place Gods People Gods Power be Part of it - JS Gillespie  

 

It's not every day that a man out does God! Death defying is a frequently used phrase but on only two historical occasions have men actually achieved that feat! The Old Testament contains two strange anomalies. Both Enoch (Genesis 5) and Elijah (2 Kings 2) pass from earth to heaven, from time to the eternal without passing through death. This is not only an intriguing record but it also challenges the truth of Hebrews 9 :27 "it is appointed unto man once to die". Did they manage to escape and defy death? Mor importantly did they find a way around conforming to the pattern of Hebrews 9? Fast forward a few thousand years to Revelation chapter 11. Two witnesses appear in Jerusalem at the mid point of the tribulation period. There is something distinctly familiar about this pair! The impact of their ministry extends for a period of 3 and a half years, like that of Elijah (James 5:17), they call down fire from heaven; like that of Elijah (2 Kings 1), they stop the rain, again like Elijah and stand alone against the world, again reminiscent of Elijah in 1 Kings 19. Could we have here these two old testament characters? Does this solve the bible long mystery? Have these men, not so much escaped death, but been reserved and set apart for a future service and ministry in the last days?  John observes, John records but perhaps like us, John participates in what God is doing (Revelation 11:1) in this chapter. He measures what belongs to God. It isn't big in the eyes of men. An inner court of 30 by 30 feet, yet it is God's patch, God's place and God's people. God values what belongs to Him, so does John and so do the two witnesses. The interest they have in time, as an interest that continues into forever (11:12). In chapter 11 it is only those with an interest in God's people and place on earth who continue to enjoy that place in heaven!  Revelation chapter 11 looks off into future days of tribulation, yet the character, the interests of these witnesses is not foreign or new to us. They have an interest in God's work and worship here and serve God in His power and by His Spirit.  Yours by Grace in Christ  Dr J Stewart Gillespie From a series of systematic bible expositions in the book of Revelation, free to download audio mp3 and free to watch online at graceinchrist.org

Revelation chapter 10 - The Sweet Taste of Victory from the Little book of Mystery - JS Gillespie   

A chapter which calls time on the mysteries of God and invites us to eat a book doesn't have to try hard to be intriguing. Revelation chapter 10 is such a chapter. Key to our understanding of this mysterious chapter of Divine mysteries is verse 7; announcing that the "mystery of God should be finished." This is not simply the announcement of 'time up' but the anticipation of the completion and fulfilment of the Divine purposes of redemption. The 14 great mysteries of the New Testament find their fulfilment now with the blowing of the 7th trumpet.  

The mystery of the Kingdom  

The mystery of the blindness of Israel (Romans 11) 

The Mystery of the spread of the Gospel (Romans 16) 
The Mystery of the Cross (1 Corinthians 1) 
The Mystery of the Rapture (1 Corinthians 15) 
The Mystery of all things headed up in Christ (Ephesians 1) 
The Mystery of Jew and Gentile in one body (Ephesians 3) 
The Mystery of Christ and the Church (Ephesians 5) 
The Mystery of Christ in us (Colossians 1) 
The Mystery of Iniquity (2 Thessalonians 2) 
The Great Mystery of Godliness (1 Timothy 3:16)  
The Mystery of the Churches and Stars (Revelation chapters 1 to 3) 
The Mystery of God (Revelation chp 10) 
The Mystery Babylon the Great  

All of these 14 mysteries seem summed up in the one mystery here - the mystery of God.  

The open book of the Divine purpose in redemption is open and as John tastes it, there is in it's inner workings a bitterness, a pain and a sorrow, the same bitterness we can detect in history as well as in the lives of individual Christians. Men like Joseph, Moses, David, Samson, Daniel, Paul and John all experienced bitter sweet lives. Lives that were bitter in their execution and yet sweet in their exaltation.  

The shadow of the cross casts itself over the workings of history as well as the lives of God's people.  

Here in chapter 10 the mysteries of God unify and complete. From chapter 10 onwards a new word will be injected in the vocabulary of exposition, that of victory. God had a plan and a purpose in the rainbow of Noah, in the law of Sinai, in the pillar of fire and cloud to guide and finally and fully in His Son. All of these pictures are reflected in the unified language of chapter 10 verses 1 to 3 as the angel announces that victory is near.  

We may not be on the easiest side but we are on the winning side!

Revelation chapter 9 vs 12 to 21 - The 6th Trumpet and the 4 Angels from the Euphrates - JS Gillespie  

Whilst undoubtedly one of the more complex chapters in Revelation, chapter 9 also contains some very practical lessons for the Christian by providing insight into the character and conduct of the enemy. The chapter begins with a Satanic smoke screen, emanating from the fumes billowing out their choking acrid debris into the air of earth. As always Satan obscures his purpose and as has been the case for generations his promises invariable conclude in the pit. This is the pit of broken promises, the pit into which the angels who followed him fell and an echo of the same trap set for Adam, David, Solomon, Ahithophel and Judas.

The second half of chapter 9 continues to provide forensic insight into the character of malevolence. The numbers perpetrating evil decrease from the swarms of locusts down to the 4 angels but their impact is amplified. These are the angels referenced in Daniel chapter 9, Isaiah 14 and Ezekiel 28; angels moving behind the scenes, motivating and manipulating the decisions and agenda of kings and politicians. These are the 4 angels of the Euphrates basin, hitherto placed on hold as the spiritual power house behind the dominance of Iraq, Turkey and Syria, once chained they now rise again, heralding the political ascendency of Turkey, Iraq and Syria. These lands become the setting for the fulfilment for some of the most unlikely of biblical prophecies. An army of 200 million are seen in this vision of John amassing for war with a third of the worlds population destroyed. At the time John wrote the world's population amounted to less than this total number observed as involved in the battle! Today however military, paramilitary and reserve forces already amount to 65 million (International Institute of Strategic Studies), with over 1 billion people potentially able to be called upon in the event of war. Today finally the numbers add up and the picture painted by John is no longer outlandish nor off the scale. Here is a battle and a slaughter ordered and ordained from the horns of the golden altar, all in God's plan and purpose, ultimately for His Glory. 

A study in our series of expository messages on the book of Revelation.

Yours by Grace in Christ

Dr J Stewart Gillespie 

Satanic Secrets behind the Smoke Screen of Hell - Revelation chapter 9 verses 1 to 12  

 

Chimeric demons, poisoned locusts, tortured humanity and the living dead of earth lurk behind the malevolent purposes of the morning star; Lucifer (Isaiah 14) whose fall from the heavens is recorded in Revelation chapter 9. Satan, ever true to his purposes fails to declare his hand. Like his smoke screen, Satanic purpose lacks transparency. He has and ever will fail to declare his malevolent intent. The light, obscured, the breath of life sustaining air repressive and suffocating with the infernal fumes of hell as the diabolical locusts arise from the abyss, the bottomless depths of a hell of disembodied demons. Eden saw Satan act by deception. He failed to promise Adam death, disaster, destruction and murder at his own door, he offered promotion to the deity of the Creator for the creature. Judas' deal with the Devil, did not have as part of it's terms and conditions, death by hanging and eternal perdition. Satan had promised a tidy profit of treasure for just a little treachery.  

From the abyss the locusts arise, demonic in origin and destructive in nature. These beings appear as the antithesis of the living creatures; the cherubim of Ezekiel chapter 1. These servants of Satan are but perverted and corrupted forms of the pure and holy, the cherubic servants of God. Portrayed is a scene terrifying and catastrophic, but the same Lord who had stood witness to the fall of Satan from heaven in Luke 10:18 is the same Lord who promises power over the scorpion and protection from that same fallen angel. In this chapter it is significant that it is only those with the seal of God who are preserved from judgment and loss. The protecting and preserving grace of Christ extends to and beyond the very gates of hell itself for His people. Greater indeed is He that is in you than is in the world, even in the world of Revelation chapter 9.

A message preached at the Bridgend Gospel Hall, New Cumnock by Dr J Stewart Gillespie as part of our systematic teaching series in the book of Revelation, audio and video recordings at graceinchrist.org.