The Revelation Given to John by Jesus Through the Angel
Revelation 10; Ezekiel 3
The Second Interlude in The Revelation
The Intermission of the Thunders and the Little Book continued
We are being shown the facets of the mystery in each revelation: the seven seals, seven trumpets, and the seven vials. Each one reveals a small portion of how Yahweh is working in the world to bring the elect to himself and glorify his name. the climax is in the sevens and their revelation is total victory. “Trials dark on every hand, and we do not understand all the ways that God would lead us to that blesses promised land. But he guides us with his eye and we’ll follow till we die; and we’ll understand it better by and by.”[i] We don’t yet see things clearly. We’re squinting in a fog, peering through a mist; but it won’t be long before the weather clears and the sun shines bright! We’ll see it then – see it clearly as Yahweh sees us, know him directly just as he knows us now!
As McGee says, Yahweh has a whole lot to tell us yet. He is the light at the end of the tunnel. Lord, give us tunnel vision. We can walk through the dark paths of our lives with our hands in his – because he knows the way.
“When your words came, I ate them; they were my joy and my heart’s delight, for I bear your name, O Lord God Almighty[ii].” “Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones[iii].” “He told me, ‘Son of man, eat what you see. Eat this book that I am giving you. Make a full meal of it.’ It tasted good – just like honey. Then he told me, ‘Son of man, go to the family of Israel and speak my Message. Look, I am not sending you to a people who speak a hard language with words you can hardly pronounce. If I had sent you to such people, their ears would have perked up and they would have listened immediately. But it won’t work that way for the family of Israel. They won’t listen to you because they won’t listen to me. They are, as I said, a hard case, hardened in their sin. But I’ll make you as hard in your ways as they are in theirs. …Speak your peace whether they listen or not.’ …I went bitterly and angrily. I didn’t want to go[iv].”
The words were sweet because the future is sweet for us, but the way of judgment is bitter. And, like Jonah, sometimes we don’t want the enemy to repent and would rather see Yahweh’s judgment for them than hear them repent and turn to Yahweh for mercy. Especially when they have done things publically that seemed to personally insult us. David Jeramiah points out that John was told to absorb the words of judgment so that he could warn the nations. “He was to saturate himself with God’s Word so that it was latterly a part of him. This is the kind of spiritual involvement that all preachers should have before they open their mouths to declare God’s truth[v]. …but bitter to his belly. …The same gospel that makes it possible for me to go to heaven puts someone else in hell.” McGee says[vi]”…but when we find out that judgment is coming to the Christ-rejecting world around us, we cannot rejoice in that. The prophesy becomes bitter. There ia another real application for this. Many folks began the study of prophesy with enthusiasm, but when they find that it is applicable to their life and that it makes demands on them personally, they lose interest, and it becomes a bitter thing. …[but] there is nothing in the Word of God that ministers more to a holy life than the thoughtful study of prophesy.”
John must prophesy again. When? After he got off the Isle of Patmos? Or will he prophesy sometime in the future about what the seven thunders said?
Plummer, et. el.[vii] believes that this refers to the second half of Revelation. That seems, to me, like a simplistic explanation of a simple statement that leaves us without any information. Reverent Clemance[viii]points out that Yahweh only reveals what we can apprehend and only piece by piece as we need it. The future depends on Yahweh’s will and isn’t revealed to us for our approval; but for our instruction.
Reverend Clemance says that history is the repeated fulfillment of prophesy and that what has been will be again. Keep in mind the prophesy that John must prophesy again may not have yet been fulfilled. John was told that he must prophesy again after he had eaten the little book. Does it make sense to you that the little book may have contained the utterances of the seven thunders?
Michel, Yahweh’s messenger sent to Daniel, gave Daniel a confidential report but told him to keep it to himself. Daniel knew about things that would happen in the end times, but he was told not to share the information with us.[ix]What we do know is that the time of trouble will worse than any Daniel had ever seen. Yahweh told Malachi, as recorded in chapter 4, verse 5, that he was sending Elijah the prophet so clear the way for the Big Judgment Day of Yahweh. John said he wasn’t Elijah[x]. John the Baptist was not the fulfillment of Malachi 4:5 Revelation 11:3 may be another reference of Malachi’s prophesy.
This is the first review lesson between the sixth and seventh trumpets. This reminds John, and us, that:
- Yahweh’s promises are dependable and there is mercy in his judgments
- That Yeshua is the Light of the world
- That he stands on purity; all his ways are pure and altogether just
- That he is omnipotent – all power resides in him
- That his word is sure[xi]
- That he claims his creation as his property, and
- That as the lion’s roar commands respect and generates fear, so does Yahweh’s Word.[xii]
It is that fear and respect that brings the lost sheep home, replacing death with life, and fear with love.
Through his experience with the seven thunders and Yahweh’s orders to seal them (keep the information to himself) John, and we, are again assured that Yahweh will not burden us with information that we don’t need right now, and that we can trust the unexplained mysteries to Yahweh, our god.
Through the announcement that the mystery of Yahweh will have been completely revealed when the seventh trumpet sounds John, and we, are reminded that when we are caught up to meet our Mashiach in the air[xiii]the Morning star will raise in our hearts[xiv]and we will see, with understanding, the whole mystery revealed. This reminder encourages us to travel the journey of our earthly life with a deep consciousness of Yahweh[xv]toward the goal of his high calling[xvi]in Yeshua Ha Mashiach[xvii].
John is reminded of Yahweh’s words to Ezekiel about prophesy he was given[xviii] when he was told to devour Yahweh’s word so that he can prophesy faithfully at the required time. And our lesson, for our lives, is that we must devour the words of Yahweh – all of them, the sweet and sour alike, and faithfully commit them to others. The truth often hurts when it is being told, but sours the stomach going down, can heal when it is absorbed.
Prayer: O Lord God Almighty, draw us closer to heart and help us to die to our own ambitions so that we may have the joy of partnering with you in your goal for the world around us.
[i] We’ll Understand It Better By and By
Text: Charles Albert Tindley
Music: Charles Albert Tindley; arr. by F.A. Clark
Tune: BY AND BY, Meter: Irr. with Refrain
[ii] Jeramiah 15:16
[iii] Proverbs 16:24
[iv] Ezekiel 3
[v] Pages 155, 156
[vi] Pages 977, 978
[vii] Page 276
[viii] Ibid, page 277
[ix] Daniel 12
[x] John 1:21-23; Luke 1:5-17; Isaiah 40:3
[xi] Psalm 119:103
[xii] Job 37:5; Jeramiah 25:30; Hosea 11:10; Zachariah 3:16, 17; Amos 1:2, 3:8
[xiii] I Thessalonians 4:15-18
[xiv] II peter 1:16-20
[xv] I Peter 1:18
[xvi] Romans 8:28-30
[xvii] Philippians 3:14
[xviii] Ezekiel 3:1-3