Lord God, Your ways are perfect and Your laws are true. I want to learn more of them each day.
Read REVELATION 15:1-16:21
 I saw in heaven another great and marvelous sign: seven angels with the seven last plagues-last, because with them God’s wrath is completed.  And I saw what looked like a sea of glass mixed with fire and, standing beside the sea, those who had been victorious over the beast and his image and over the number of his name. They held harps given them by God  and sang the song of Moses the servant of God and the song of the Lamb: “Great and marvelous are your deeds, Lord God Almighty. Just and true are your ways, King of the ages.  Who will not fear you, O Lord, and bring glory to your name? For you alone are holy. All nations will come and worship before you, for your righteous acts have been revealed.”  After this I looked and in heaven the temple, that is, the tabernacle of the Testimony, was opened.  Out of the temple came the seven angels with the seven plagues. They were dressed in clean, shining linen and wore golden sashes around their chests.  Then one of the four living creatures gave to the seven angels seven golden bowls filled with the wrath of God, who lives for ever and ever.  And the temple was filled with smoke from the glory of God and from his power, and no one could enter the temple until the seven plagues of the seven angels were completed.  Then I heard a loud voice from the temple saying to the seven angels, “Go, pour out the seven bowls of God’s wrath on the earth.”  The first angel went and poured out his bowl on the land, and ugly and painful sores broke out on the people who had the mark of the beast and worshiped his image.  The second angel poured out his bowl on the sea, and it turned into blood like that of a dead man, and every living thing in the sea died.  The third angel poured out his bowl on the rivers and springs of water, and they became blood.  Then I heard the angel in charge of the waters say: “You are just in these judgments, you who are and who were, the Holy One, because you have so judged;  for they have shed the blood of your saints and prophets, and you have given them blood to drink as they deserve.”  And I heard the altar respond: “Yes, Lord God Almighty, true and just are your judgments.”  The fourth angel poured out his bowl on the sun, and the sun was given power to scorch people with fire.  They were seared by the intense heat and they cursed the name of God, who had control over these plagues, but they refused to repent and glorify him.  The fifth angel poured out his bowl on the throne of the beast, and his kingdom was plunged into darkness. Men gnawed their tongues in agony  and cursed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores, but they refused to repent of what they had done.  The sixth angel poured out his bowl on the great river Euphrates, and its water was dried up to prepare the way for the kings from the East.  Then I saw three evil spirits that looked like frogs; they came out of the mouth of the dragon, out of the mouth of the beast and out of the mouth of the false prophet.  They are spirits of demons performing miraculous signs, and they go out to the kings of the whole world, to gather them for the battle on the great day of God Almighty.  “Behold, I come like a thief! Blessed is he who stays awake and keeps his clothes with him, so that he may not go naked and be shamefully exposed.”  Then they gathered the kings together to the place that in Hebrew is called Armageddon.  The seventh angel poured out his bowl into the air, and out of the temple came a loud voice from the throne, saying, “It is done!”  Then there came flashes of lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder and a severe earthquake. No earthquake like it has ever occurred since man has been on earth, so tremendous was the quake.  The great city split into three parts, and the cities of the nations collapsed. God remembered Babylon the Great and gave her the cup filled with the wine of the fury of his wrath.  Every island fled away and the mountains could not be found.  From the sky huge hailstones of about a hundred pounds each fell upon men. And they cursed God on account of the plague of hail, because the plague was so terrible. Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
ReflectWhat do you learn about God from this song of praise?
History as we know it is approaching its finale in this passage. In the midst of death and mass destruction, as the wrath of God is executed (14:19,20), another act of worship is now played out for all to see. This is a choir of all the saints and the song we hear them singing is an extract of the song of Moses recorded in Exodus 15. It’s a song reminding us that what is taking place here is a righteous act (15:4), that it is the fulfillment of justice and truth (15:3). It reminds us, too, that the people of the earth have had ample opportunity to fear the Lord and give him glory.
As the bowls of wrath are poured out one by one, devastating everything in their path, we might think of Pharaoh under siege during the ten plagues Moses was sent to warn him of (Exod. 7-12). Like Pharaoh, the people’s hearts are hardened and they refuse to repent. By now it’s too late for them. They curse God, totally unaware that they are experiencing inexorable holy justice. God’s wrath was once turned towards us, too. Jesus is our shield, stemming the full force of God’s righteous and just anger towards us.
Thank the Lord Jesus Christ, your shield and defender, that he has turned God’s just wrath away from you.
Lord Jesus, I thank You that I no longer stand under judgment for my sin because of what You did for me.
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