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Chapter 10=    =Chapter12


:1 And there was given to me a reed like unto a rod: And the angel stood, saying, Rise and measure the temple of God, and the altar, and them that worship therein.

:2 But the court which is without the temple leave out, and measure it not; for it is given unto the Gentiles: And the holy city shall they tread underfoot forty and two months.

:3 And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days, clothed in sackcloth.

:4 These are the two olive trees, and the two candelsticks standing before the God of the earth.

:5 And if anyone will hurt them, fire proceedeth out of their mouth, and devoureth their enemies: And if any man will hurt them, he must in this manner be killed.

:6 These have power to shut heaven, that it rain not in the days of their prophecy: and have power over waters to turn them to blood, and to smite the earth with all plagues, as often as they will.

:7 And when they shall have finished their testimony, the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make was against them, and shall overcome them, and kill them.

:8 And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sod'om and E'gypt, where also our Lord was crucified.

:9 And they of the people, and kindreds, and tongues, and nations shall see their dead bodies three days and an half, and shall not suffer their dead bodies to be put into graves.

:10 And they that dwell upon the earth shall rejoice over them, and make merry, and shall send gifts one to another, because these two prophets tormented them that dwelt on the earth.

:11 And after the three days and an half the Spirit of life from God entered into them, and they stood upon their feet; and great fear fell upon them which saw.

:12 And they heard a great voice from heaven saying unto them, Come up hither. And they ascended up to heaven in a cloud, and their enemies beheld them.

:13 And the same hour was there a great earthquake, and the tenth part of the city fell, and in the earthquake were slain of men seven thousand: and the remnant were affrighted and gave glory to the God of heaven.

:14 The second woe is past; and behold, the third woe cometh quickly.

:15 And the seventh angel sounded: and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord and of his Christ; and he shall reign forever and ever.

:16 And the four and twenty elders, which sat before God on their seats, fell upon their faces and worshipped God,

:17 Saying, We give thee thanks, O Lord God Almighty, which art, and wast, and art to come; because thou hast taken to thee thy great power, and hast reigned.

:18 And the nations were angry, and thy wrath is come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and that thou shouldest give reward unto your servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear thy name, small and great; and shouldest destroy them which destroy the earth.

:19 And the temple of God was opened in heaven, and there was seen in his temple, the ark of his testament; And there were lightnings, and voices, and thunderings, and an earthquake, and great hail.


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CHAPTERS

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Statement of Faith

Revelation of Jesus Christ


Verses 1 - 2

"...a reed like unto a rod..."

This chapter opens with the same angel of chapter 10, giving John a reed like a measuring rod, and telling him to measure the temple of God. This is to be done in order to determine the size, relative to the number of people worshipping there. Is it sparsely occupied, or is it nearly full?

The time for all things to be fulfilled is drawing nigh, and a measurement is now taken to determine where the people stand in their relationship to God.

This temple has to be the newly built temple in Jerusalem at the time of the tribulation period, and not the heavenly temple, because it is stated that the outer court is given to the Gentiles. It is also stated that they shall tread the Holy City under foot for 42 months (3 1/2 years). This is the same time period set for the Antichrist to exercise his power {Rev. 13:5}.

Verses 3 - 6

"...two witnesses..."

As we discovered in chapter 10, these two men were depicted as being the feet of the angel and appeared as "pillars of fire". They are to give testimony for a period of 1,260 days (42 months x 30 days) clothed in sackcloth; the garment of the prophets of old.

In verse 4, they are also identified as the "two olive trees" and the "two candlesticks" which stand before the God of the earth. This is an obvious reference to Zechariah 4:3,14, and helps us to understand that these two burning lampstands come down to earth as the "pillars of fire".

In that chapter, they appear as two olive trees, and also as two olive branches. The two branches drip oil into two bowls from which pipes run to a third bowl, sitting on top of a golden lampstand. The third bowl provides the fuel for the seven lamps attached to the golden lampstand, through seven pipes which extend out of the bowl.

Verse 14 tells us that these are "...the two annointed ones that stand by the Lord of the whole earth." Verse 3 indicates that these two are standing to the left and to the right of the golden lampstand. The golden lampstand would therefore, represent the Lord of the whole earth or the throne upon which He sits, since we are told in verse 14 that these two stand beside Him. This chapter also has us to know that the seven lamps (verse 2) are the "...eyes of the Lord, which run to and fro through the whole earth." This is comparable to Rev. 4:5 and Rev. 5:6.

In Rev 11:4, we see these two "...standing before the God of the earth" rather than beside Him, indicating that they have moved out of their customary positions and are ready to go forth on their mission in the earth.

"...fire proceedeth out of their mouth..."

God has equipped these two with special powers of protection, so that anyone who seeks to thwart their mission will be dealt with in a swift and most undesirable manner. Though attempts will be made to take their lives, all will result in failure until they have finished the testimony for which they were sent into the world to deliver. The fire coming from their mouths speaks of judgment sanctioned and executed from heaven.

"...power to shut heaven..."

Verse 6 reveals a couple of things which point us to the idea that these two are Moses and Elijah.

That no rain falls in the days of their prophecy (3 1/2 years), reminds us that the first judgment recorded in the Bible, as related to the Prophet Elijah, was that he prayed and no rain fell in the land {I Kings 17:1}.

In Luke 4:25, Jesus stated that in the days of Elijah, "...the heaven was shut up three years and six months, when great famine was throughout all the land." James 5:17-18 speaks of the same event.

Malachai 4:5 also tells us that God will send the prophet Elijah "...before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord."

John the Baptist indeed came in the spirit of Elijah (Luke 1:17), but Elijah himself will return to this world before the Revelation of Jesus Christ.

Indeed, the Jewish people also believe that Elijah will come in advance of Messiah to prepare the world for his arrival. By Jewish custom, a place in every home is reserved for Elijah, at each Passover, in hopes that he will make his appearance and usher in the Messianic age.

"...power over the waters to turn them to blood..." recalls that the first judgment of God wrought through the hands of Moses, before Pharoah, was changing the water of the Nile River into blood (Exodus 7:14-24).

These two have power to smite the earth with any judgments they choose, and as often as they deem them necessary. These judgments appear to be in addition to those which are poured out as the "wrath of God" in the Book of Revelation.

Scripture implies that because of the afflictions brought on by the plagues released by them, at least some attempts will be made on their lives. The inability of the world to stop them will bring great anguish upon all those who oppose their message.

God is going to restore the Law and the Prophets through these two witnesses, as a testimony to Israel and the world, that all things contained therein point to Jesus as the true Messiah.

In Rev. 12:17 we are told of those which, "...keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ." They keep the Law, and now understand and receive the fact that all the prophets of God pointed to the coming of Jesus Christ as the Messiah.

When Jesus was transfigured (Matt. 17:1-3; Mark 9:2-4; Luke 9:28-30) it was Moses and Elijah who appeared with Him.


Verses 7 - 12

"...the beast that ascendeth..."

Here we see the very first mention, in the Book of Revelation, of the term "beast" as applied to the Antichrist of Chapter 13. Prior to this, we find no reference to this person or the bottomless pit, unless we apply this title to the angel, Abaddon, in chapter 9.

Again it should be emphasized that angelic beings, unlike demonic spirits, have the ability to manifest themselves in human form. This was covered in chapter 9. Therefore, it should not seem unreasonable to consider that the angel, Abaddon, will be manifested in the earth as a man (i.e. "the man of sin"). Just as Jesus is the literal Son of God, there is also some Scriptural evidence which indicates that Abaddon may possibly be the literal son of Satan. That issue will be covered in chapter 13.

After the two witnesses have finished their 3 1/2 years of testimony, verse 7 tells us that the beast which ascends out of the bottomless pit, will make war against them and seemingly prevail by killing them. This seems to coincide with the exact mid-point of the tribulation period (Rev. 13:2). This too will be covered in more detail in chapter 13.

Finally, the world has found its champion. Who can make war with him? (Rev. 13:4). No one was able to fight against the two witnesses before. Now one has come forward who not only can fight with them, but can prevail and stop the misery they have been causing the world.

No doubt, it will be widely believed that the true messiah has come; and that the real beast, who was dead {Rev. 17:8} and lived again (Moses), and his false prophet (Elijah) have been killed. Now the true messiah (the Antichrist) can go forward and establish his kingdom on the earth. The human heart will be so depraved in that day, with Scripture totally twisted, that right and wrong will appear to have swapped places.

In verses 8-10 we see the bodies of the witnesses on display in the street of Jerusalem, the city spiritually identified by the names "Sodom and Egypt". Theses two names refer to corruption and bondage, for the holy city is to be trodden under foot by Gentiles (Rev. 11:2, 9) for 42 months.

This time period will begin shortly before the mid-point of the tribulation and continue until shortly before the revelation of Jesus (when the Jews regain control of the city {Zech.12:2-9}.

The people who see their dead bodies will rejoice and send gifts to one another thinking their troubles are over. Then only 3/ 12 days later, God will breathe life into the bodies of the witnesses, causing them to stand and then ascend up to heaven.

Their resurrection after 3 1/2 days, may be a prophetic type of the righteous, who will be slain during the great tribulation; and that they also will rise from the dead after the 3 1/2 year period is finished. With the resurrection of the two witnesses, however; the question is now answered: Who is able to make war with the beast? God is able! Not only can He make war with him, but He can also prevail against him!


Verses 13 - 14

"...a great earthquake..."

Shortly after the two witnesses ascend to heaven, a great earthquake strikes the city with a tenth part of it being destroyed. We are told that seven thousand people died as a results of the quake. The rest of the people, in that part of the city, were terrified and glorified God. Not everyone in Jerusalem responds this way, for the city has been given into the hands of the Gentiles for a 3 1/2 year period. Only the survivors who are in the tenth part of the city which was destroyed, glorify God.

Bear in mind that believers will reside in the vicinity of Jerusalem until the abomination of desolation (setting up of the image) is accomplished at the mid-point of the tribulation {Matt. 24:15-16}.

Verse 14 informs us that we are now ready to proceed to the seventh trumpet, the sounding of which will unleash events that will bring about the last and most terrible of the three great woes. The first woe unleashed a horde of demonic creatures upon the world; the second woe unleashed a demonic army whose mission was to kill a third of mankind. The last of the woes to be set loose will be covered in chapter 12.


The Seventh Angel Sounded

Verses 15 - 19

"The kingdoms of this world..."

Rev. 10:7 declares that in the days of the sounding of this angel, the mystery of God will be finished. This time seems to correspond with the events of chapters 12 and 13 for which we were given some preparation in chapters 10 and 11. The sounding of this trumpet will occur prior to the midpoint of the tribulation period. This is confirmed by the fact that the third great woe, to be released in chapter 12, occurs before the revelation of the Antichrist of chapter 13: the event which ushers in the second half of the seven years of the tribulation period.

 


CHAPTER SUMMARY

Chapter 11 continues the action initiated in the previous chapter. The same angel of that chapter, now gives John a reed like a measuring rod, and tells him to measure the temple of God. The time for all things to be fulfilled is drawing near, and a measurement is now taken to determine where the people stand in their relationship to God.

The temple mentioned here is the one which shall be rebuilt in Jerusalem during the tribulation period, for we are told that the outer court is given to the Gentiles for forty two months (from just before the placing of the Abomination of Desolation until the retaking of Jerusalem by the Jews).

The presence of two witnesses, depicted as the feet of the angel of chapter 10, is now clearly made evident. They are brought forth as God's witnesses, and empowered to smite the earth with any plague they deem necessary; and as often as they will. This causes great distress to the disobedient peoples of the earth, until a champion arises in the earth to make war with, and prevail over them.

The champion revealed here, is the beast which ascends from the bottomless pit (the Antichrist). After subduing the two witnesses, the world will glorify him, and with merry hearts, send gifts to one another thinking that their troubles are over. Three and one-half days later however, the two witnesses are resurrected by God, and caught up to heaven, causing great fear to fall upon those who see it.

This is followed by a great earthquake which destroys a tenth part of Jerusalem. Seven thousand are killed, with those surviving in that part of the city, repenting and giving glory to God.

The seventh trumpet next sounds, as preparations are being layed to bring forth the third great woe, or judgment upon the earth. The chapter ends with verse 19, giving a foreshadow of greater judgments to come upon an earth which has given itself to utter wickedness.

 

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