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:1 And after these things, I heard a great voice of much people in heaven, saying, Al-le-lu'ia; Salvation, and glory, and honour, and power unto the Lord our God:

:2 For true and righteous are his judgments, for he hath judged the great whore, which did corrupt the earth with her fornication, and hath avenged the blood of his servants at her hand.

:3 And again they said, Al-le-lu'ia. And her smoke rose up for ever and ever.

:4 And the four and twenty elders and the four beast fell down and worshipped God that sat on the throne, saying, A'men; Al-le-lu'ia.

:5 And a voice came out of the throne, saying, Praise our God, all ye his servants, and ye that fear Him, both small and great.

:6 And I heard, as it were, the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying, Al-le-lu'ia: For the Lord God omnipotent reigneth.

:7 Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready.

:8 And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of the saints.

:9 And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he said to me, These are the true sayings of God.

:10 And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See thou do it not: I am thy fellow servant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Je'sus: Worship God: for the testimony of Je'sus is the spirit of prophecy.

:11 And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; And he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war.

:12 His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no one knew but he himself.

:13 And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood, and his name is called The Word of God.

:14 And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean.

:15 And out of his mouth goes a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron. and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.

:16 And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.

:17 And I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the fowls that fly in the midst of heaven, Come and gather yourselves together unto the supper of the great God;

:18 That ye may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses, and of them that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great.

:19 And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against him that sat on the horse, and against his army.

:20 And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into the lake of fire burning with brimstone.

:21 And the remnant were slain with the sword of him that sat on the horse, which sword proceeded out of his mouth: and all the fowls were filled with their flesh.


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Statement of Faith


Verses 1 - 6

"...Al-le-lu'ia..."

This chapter opens with a grand chorus of the inhabitants of heaven, repeatedly shouting "Al-le-lu'ia!" to Him who sits upon the throne. He has judged and destroyed Babylon, the great harlot who corrupted the earth, and upon whose hands was the blood of the saints and martyrs of God.

As we recall from Rev.17:6, she was "...drunken with the blood of the saints." Now the saints of the Almighty have been avenged, and the smoke of her destruction ascends up "...for ever and ever..." as they behold her judgment.

This present greed-driven world will ultimately resurrect Babylon from her grave in the Iraqi Desert, creating a vicious entity consumed with pride and an unquenchable love for material goods. Anyone standing against her excesses will be subject to all the wrath she can bring to bear upon them.

The word "Al-le-lu'ia", sometimes pronounced as "Hallelujah" is found only four times in the Bible, and all four occurances are here in Chapter 19. It's a word, which has become universally known and literally means, "Praise Ye the Lord". There is great joy in heaven that God has judged thusly, "For true and righteous are his judgments...".

The time setting for this special praise which is offered up to God, is just prior to the actual Revelation of Jesus Christ (verse 11). The destruction of Babylon, resulting in the creation of the lake of fire, will be one of the very last events which occur at, or before, the revelation of the Lord Jesus.

The lake of fire must be in place before the Lord goes forth to execute His wrath and judgment upon the Beast, False Prophet and the people of the earth who have received his mark upon their hands or foreheads. All of these will be cast into the lake of burning brimstone {Rev.19:20 ; Matt. 25:41}.

 
 
 


Verses 7 - 8

"...the marriage of the Lamb is come..."

In verse 7, we see the same great multitude of the previous verse proclaiming, "...let us be glad and rejoice,.. for the marriage of the Lamb is come..." These are saints of God and witnesses. By their own words, have excluded themselves as being a part of the body described, in this chapter, as the wife of the Lamb.

The accepted understanding, which seems to be in agreement with the ancient Jewish marriage rite, is that these are friends of the groom (i.e. Old Testament Saints, and the martyred, or deceased saints of the tribulation period). They are no less beloved by the groom, but have a different relationship with him than His bride. The firstfruits of God and the Lamb (the 144,000 of chapters 7 and 14) are also among those not counted as a part of the bride, for they are caught up to heaven after the rapture of the Church.

Scripture plainly identifies the bride, or wife of the Lamb (Jesus), as the Church {Eph. 5:23-25}. She is also identified in Rev 21:9-10 as new Jerusalem, but this seems to point more to the inhabitants of the city, rather than the physical city itself; although, here the two seem to be indistinguishable.

To better understand how the marriage of the Lamb came to be, let's look briefly at the basic process through which marraige was accomplished in ancient Israel; and how Jesus and the Church are currently engaged in the fulfillment of it.

The process of Jewish marriage was a very structured and legalistic endeavor. Marriages were generally arranged for the bride and groom by their fathers. When a young Jewish man wanted to marry a Jewish maiden, a contract (Katubah) was struck between the prospective groom and the family of the bride whereby obligations of the parties were set forth. A price, "the bride's price", had to be agreed to next. Then a ceremonial cup of wine was drank to seal the agreement. When this was completed, the couple were, in effect, married. Only the consumation remained to be completed. For the contract of a bethrothed couple to be voided normally required the execution of a bill of divorce (Matt. 1:18-20).

Once the betrothal was initiated, the bridegroom left the home of the bride, and most often went to his father's house, to began construction of a wedding chamber. The normal betrothal period was set at about 12 months. However, there may be certain circumstances which might cause a delay in the groom's return {Matt. 25:5}.

The bridegroom labored earnestly to build the chamber, however, it was the father who determined when the wedding chamber was suitable to be occupied by the espoused couple {Matt. 24:36}.

The son, in his zeal to go and secure her, may overlook important details necessary to complete the marriage process. The chamber had to be properly stocked with essential items, for the couple were to remain inside for a period of seven days.

The wisdom and experience of the father therefore, would insure that every issue was properly addressed before the OK was given. We may reckon the Lord's delay in returning to the great care given to these details, or it may simply be the mercy of God towards the sinner of the world {II Pet. 3:8-9} which accounts for the delay.

Once the OK was given by the father, the groom then, in the company of his family and friends, returned to the brides home. This was often done in the middle of the night, so as to surprise her.

Herein is the time of the catching up of the church distinguished from the Revelation of Jesus Christ. The coming for the bride is as a, "thief in the night". No man knows the hour he will come; only the Father, who inspects ther bridal chamber, knows the time {Matt. 24:36}.

Matt. 24:44 states,

"Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh."

It's a surprise to the church; whereas, the revelation of Jesus, at the end of the tribulation period is anticipated. Though that day may also come as a 'thief in the night" to the unbelieving world; it will not be unexpected by the faithful {I Thess. 5:4}, who can count the number of days the Antichrist is given to reign (1,260), before Jesus comes to do battle with him.

As the wedding party approached the bride's home, a shout was given {Matt. 25:6 ; I Thess. 4:16} to announce the arrival of the bridegroom. At His coming, He will awake those who are sleeping (the dead in Christ, I Thess. 4:15). In chapter 19, there is no indication that a shout is given, or a trumpet sounded to announce the revelation of Jesus Christ, as stated in I Thess. 4:16.

Once the groom has "seized" his bride and taken her from her home: they along with the wedding party returned to the Father's house; where they received the blessing of the groom's father, before the espoused couple entered the wedding chamber {Dan. 7:13-14}.

After entering the chamber, the door was shut. The groomsman (best man) then waited near the door for word from the bridegroom that the marriage had been consumated. Once the door was slightly opened and word was given, the groomsman turned and informed the wedding guest, which responded with great joy. A celebration, which was to last for the balance of the seven days, then began.

The bride and groom however, remained in the chamber; during the celebration. It is to be a time when all the secrets of each party are brought to light. At the end of the seven day period, the door will be opened and the husband and wife shall come out of the chamber, clad in new apparel.

They, along with the wedding party, then return to the wife's former home to celebrate the marriage supper. This act was undoubtedly intended to allow the wife's friends and family (the surviving tribulation saints) to take part in the celebration {Matt. 24:31 ; Rev 19:9,17}.

This is a perfect picture of Jesus and the Church, and the prophetic scenario that shall be played out as the church is caught up to heaven, just prior to the start of the tribulation period.

The betrothal of Jesus and the Church began with the contract, stating the obligations of the parties, and setting the "bride's price". The price demanded for her hand was the forfeiture of His life. Once the price had been agreed to, a cup of wine was drank to seal the contract {Matt. 26:27-28}.

This cup, referred to as the "cup of acceptance", in the betrothal, is identical to the third cup of the Passover service, which is also called, "the cup of redemption". This is the one which Jesus shared with His diciples, as recorded in the gospel accounts. It's the cup of the new covenant (the sealing of the contract between the Lamb and His bride). Jesus went on to state that He would not drink of the fruit of the vine again until the day He drinks it with the faithful in the Kingdom of God {Matt. 24:28-29}. On that day, at His revelation, He will again drink the wine, at the marriage supper of the Lamb {Rev. 19:17-18}.

By this, He made known His intentions to redeem His bride, whose price He was about to go forth and pay at Calvary's cross. It is now celebrated in the Church as the cup of holy communion.

After paying the bride's price at Calvary, Jesus rose from the dead, ascended up to His Father's house, and begin construction of the wedding chamber {John 14:2-3}.

With regard to partaking of the Communion cup, Jesus told us that we are to drink of it in remembrance of Him {Luke 22:19-20}. This is to make us mindful, not only of the great price which He has paid, but also that the groom, who is gone away, is coming back to receive His bride to Himself. We are not to be forgetful of that fact. We are bought with a price {I Cor. 6:20}, and He will most assuredly return to redeem that which He has purchased.

The common belief among Christians is, that when Jesus ascended to heaven, He went to make ready the mansions which He spoke of in John 14. In actuality, "...a place..." (singular), which He went to prepare for the church is the wedding chamber, not the mansions (plural) which are in heaven. When that chamber is finished and approved by the Father, then He will return to receive His bride and take her there.

The mansions, spoken of in John 14, are undoubtedly the place where the saints in heaven currently reside while awaiting the chamber to be finished. Once that occurs, the souls of these shall be assembled and return with Him to the earth {I Thess. 4:14}, where their bodies shall be resurrected and reunited with their spirits. I Cor. 15:44, tells us that we have both natural and spiritual bodies. These spirits, who are reunited with their resurrected bodies, and the mortal saints of the earth, who are translated into glorified bodies, shall then be caught up together, and return to the wedding chamber in heaven.

The eternal home of all the saints, will not be the mansions which currently exist in heaven; but rather new Jerusalem, which shall be established upon the new Earth of the future.

 
 
 


Verses 9 - 10

"...Blessed are they which are called ..."

This phrase seems to speak not only of the guest which form the wedding party in heaven, but also those righteous of the earth who have survived the great tribulation.

So if the marriage supper of the Lamb is not a part of the festivities in heaven, just where does it fit in? The feasting of this great supper most likely refers to the events in the aftermath of the Battle of Armageddon.

"...the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy ..."

The words which come forth from His mouth are mighty and sure. Nothing, which the Father has given unto Him to show us, shall fail to come to pass.

Verses 11-12

"...I saw heaven opened ..."

The grand finale of history now begins to come into view. With the Jewish believers of Jerusalem facing extermination at the hands of an overwhelming army led by the Antichrist: the Captain-General of the army of Almighty God (Jesus Christ) breaks through the clouds of heaven with His bride, and the mighty host of heavenly angels. He who is called "...Faithful and True..." is come to fulfill His words, and do battle with the forces of darkness. The table is prepared for the great feast of God Almighty.

"...His eyes ..."

The eyes of Him who sits upon the white horse are like, "...a flame of fire..." This reference to Jesus was previously used in Rev. 1:14, in the vision of the seven churches. In that instance, He is portrayed as the Lord of the church. No crowns however, are mentioned as being upon His head in the earlier vision.

In contrast, we see here in chapter 19, that Jesus appears wearing many crowns. These are the crowns of royalty (diadema), as covered in chapter 6, which are vested with civil authority and power to rule; unlike the crowns, or wreaths of victory, described elsewhere in the New Testament. He now appears as,

"... KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS..."


"...a name written, that no man knew, but he himself..."

In the world in which we live, the names of Jesus are almost as numerous as there are languages of man. However, when He is revealed from heaven, He will come forth with a new singular name, by which all peoples will speake of Him. This is obviously in fulfillment of {Zech.14:9}.

Verses 13-14 "..vesture dipped in blood ..."

Jesus is here pictured as wearing a robe dipped in blood, the badge of His worthiness. This is contrasted with the robes of the saints, which are, "...fine linen, clean and white:..." The Lord has a score to settle with the enemy: retribution for the shedding of His own blood. Because of Satan, and the sin which he brought into the world, the blood of the Lamb had to be shed. Now the day of pay back has come {Rom. 12:19}.

Verses 7 and 8 of this chapter shows us that the Bride of the Lamb is wearing white robes which represent, "...the righteousness of the saints." Those wearing the robes of righteousness are seen in verse 14, as following Him on white horses. All of this bright white seems to constitute what appears to be the clouds of heaven, by which Jesus and the saints are revealed.

Verses 15-16 "..a sharp sword ..."

The sharp sword coming out of His mouth here represents His word by which the wicked shall be slain {Isa. 11:4}.

The "rod of iron" with which He shall rule the earth speaks mainly of His intolerance for the sins of the offspring of the righteous of the kingdom, who will yet have the rebellious spirit of man in them. This same rod shall be shared with the caught up 144,000 saints (the man child) of Rev.12:5. These will probably weild the same kind of power over the people, as the preist of the temple did when Jesus walked upon the earth.

That power given to the man child however, is not exclusive to him; for it is also stated in Jesus' message to the Church of Thyatira {Rev. 2:26-27}, that He will give the same power to those who overcome in this world.

This last statement, made by Jesus, is the fulfillment of {Psalms 2:7-9}

It is further stated, in verse 15, that He is the one who, "...treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God." This goes back to {Rev.14:20}.

In verse 16, we see that Jesus is wearing a title for all to see and bow before,

"KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS."


God's presences is now come into the world with power and might, to subdue everything which exalts itself against Him. His rule will continue until every vestige of rebellion has been put down, and death itself is finally conquered and removed for all eternity {ICor. 15: 25-26 ; Rev. 20:14}.

Verses 17 - 18

"...all the fowls that fly ..."

As stated in chapter 12, the terminology used to describe the destruction of Gog's army in Ezekiel 39:17-20 is near identical to that used to describe the destruction of the Antichrist's army in Rev. 19:17-21. Both refer to the birds of heaven devouring the "flesh" of those who are slain.

When the Antichrist and the ten kings destroy Babylon (chapter 17), it is said that they shall, "... eat her flesh, and burn her with fire." This, obviously, is not meant to say that these will be cannibalistic peoples who attack that city. There are however, pagan beliefs which state that, if you consume the flesh of your enemy, you will also obtain the strength which he had.

The "flesh", spoken of here, most likely represents the immense wealth which Babylon possessed: that muscle, or flesh which gave her such great strength and power.

After the Antichrist and the ten kings prevail against Babylon, all of her great wealth will be brought into the land of Israel {Zech. 14:2,14}. As stated previously, the Antichrist intends to establish his capital there after exterminating the rebellious Jews which are holding control of Jerusalem.

We know from Proverbs 13:22 that, "the wealth of the sinner is laid up for the just." Therefore, at some point, the righteous will take possession of it.

The Battle of Armageddon appears to be the event which will culminate with, all the wealth which the wicked have amassed, being given into the hands of the righteous.

This is the heart of the marriage supper of the Lamb. A feast is set for the righteous to take full possession of the world's wealth. Those who had been deprived of even the basic necessities in former times, are now filled with food (given full control of everything, previously deemed to be the property and right of the wicked).

 


Verses 19 - 21

"...gathered together to make war..."

The point in time spoken of here, is that which is mentioned in {Rev. 16:16}. The great battlefield, located at Megiddo, dates from ancient times, and is located about 10 miles southwest of the city of Nazareth. Because of its strategic importance, Thothmes III, who made Egypt a great empire, stated that, "Megiddo is worth a thousand cities".

It was also General Allenby, in World War I, who broke the power of the Turks at this place. It is said that more blood has been shed around the hill of Megiddo than any other spot on earth.

All the nations, led by the ten kings of Rev.17:14, who have submitted themselves to the leadership of the Beast, will be gathered together at this place, as a staging ground for the great battle against Almighty God, at Jerusalem. The results however, will be a resounding defeat for those who stand in opposition to Him.

"...the beast was taken..."

The Beast and the False Prophet, the two feet which constituted the base upon which the satanic trinity sits, are now going to be removed from their place. These two are now cast alive into the lake of fire, created by the destruction of Babylon, which they helped bring about. A most appropriate end for these two renegades.

Dan. 8:25 states this of the Antichrist:

"...And he shall magnify himself in his heart,
and by peace he shall destroy many:
He shall also stand up against the Prince of princes;
But he shall be broken without hand."

and this also, from Dan. 7:11,

"I beheld then because of the voice of the great words which the horn spake: I beheld even till the beast was slain, and his body destroyed, and given to the burning flames."

The body of the Beast, mentioned in this last verse, surely refers to the armies, which are gathered together at Megiddo, for service to him.

We are told in Rev 19: 20 that the Beast and False Prophet are "...cast alive..." into the lake of fire. The armies which follow them however, are slain, as attested to in verse 21.

The process of Matt. 13:41 will then begin. With that task completed, the marriage supper of the Lamb will begin, and all of the wealth amassed by the wicked, shall be consumed by the righteous,

"...And all the birds were filled with their flesh." {Matt. 24:31}

 


CHAPTER SUMMARY

This chapter opens with great joy, as mighty Babylon has finally received her due. A continuing chorus of "Alleluia!" goes up before Him who sits upon the throne of heaven. The blood of His servants, who cried out in chapter 6, has now been avenged.

Now the bride has come forth from the wedding chamber with her husband, and the time has arrived that they should return to her former home to celebrate the Marriage Supper.

Just as the faithful of earthly Jerusalem are about to be consumed by the Antichrist and his armies, the clouds of heaven open and the "KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS" appears with his armies.

As the Antichrist advances into Jerusalem, the feet of Jesus touchdown on the Mount of Olives, causing an earthquake to divide the city. The Antichrist and False Prophet are captured and cast into the lake of fire and their armies are destroyed.

The chapter ends with "all the fowls" of heaven (the tribulation saints) being filled with the flesh (wealth) of those who are slain. The Marriage Supper of the Lamb is hereby accomplished.

 

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