The Destruction of Evil | Revelation 4-19

Welcome to Real Life. Revelation is God’s final chapter in his story of our world. He created a perfect world... but a world where man has the power of choice. Eve and Adam chose to sin. Our perfect world was corrupted. Every generation since has carried the curse. God sent a Savior to set us free. On the cross, Jesus paid the penalty for sin so that whoever chooses may come to him and receive life.[1] In this final chapter, Jesus returns to destroy this corrupt world and create a new kingdom of righteousness. 



In Revelation four, the apostle John is summoned to the very throne room of God. I am awestruck by the images he describes. The Eternal One sparkles like gemstones in a rainbow of light which surrounds his throne. Twenty-four elders dressed in white with golden crowns encircle him. From the throne come flashes of lightning and peals of thunder. Seven lamps are ablaze and a shiny sea like crystal glass lies before it. Four winged creatures covered in eyes are continually glorifying God. Thousands and millions of angels gather to worship. 

The Holy One holds out a sealed scroll. A mighty angel calls, “Who is worthy to break the seals and open the scroll?” No one in heaven, on earth, or under the earth is found worthy. John weeps. But then an elder says,
Look! The Lion of the tribe of Judah, the heir to David’s throne has won the victory.
He is worthy to open the scroll and its seven seals.
Jesus, the Lamb who was slain, rises triumphantly and takes the scroll.

And they sang a new song with these words: “You are worthy to take the scroll and break its seals and open it. For you were slaughtered, and your blood has ransomed people for God from every tribe and language and people and nation. And you have caused them to become a Kingdom of priests for our God. And they will reign on the earth.”[2]
What is this mysterious scroll? Why is Jesus the only one worthy to break its seals? The scroll releases a series of judgments upon this earth. A new kingdom of righteousness is coming. But first, the old kingdom where evil has held free reign must be destroyed. Only Jesus – Creator of our world,[3] born into the world fully God and fully man in Bethlehem, who lived a sinless life, and shed his blood to set captive sinners free - is worthy to judge the world. He breaks the seals. It begins:
  • Seal 1 A white horse is ridden by a conqueror bent on conquest. 
  • Seal 2 A red horse appears whose rider removes peace from earth. Wars break out. 
  • Seal 3 A black horse comes forth whose rider carries a scale. Food prices skyrocket. 
  • Seal 4 A pale horse named Death emerges and the Grave follows. They destroy one quarter of earth’s population with war, famine, disease, and wild animals.
  • Seal 5 The souls of martyrs cry out, “O Sovereign Lord, holy and true, how long before you judge the people who belong to this world and avenge our blood for what they have done to us?”[4] They’re told to wait a little longer. More will be added, more will be martyred in the Great Tribulation. 
  • Seal 6 An immense earthquake turns the sun black, the moon blood-red, stars fall to earth, the sky recedes, and every mountain and island is removed. Those who remain alive cry to the mountains and rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of the one who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb. For the great day of their wrath has come, and who is able to survive?”[5]
  • Seal 7 Silence. Then seven trumpet judgments commence … and so it continues (chapters 8-19) until the end. 

Our world is broken. War, disease, murder, death are commonplace. Mankind is not evolving into something better. We are growing worse. Still, most of us live fairly comfortable lives. We live in a period of God’s grace. We don’t see his immediate response to sin. A murderer takes a life without being struck dead. I tell a lie and my nose doesn't grow. Though it appears otherwise, God sees it all.[6] He is angry over sin and what it does to us. However, he is patiently waiting – waiting for one more person to repent, turn away from evil and turn to him.[7]

One day the grace period will end. Evil will be punished. The rightful King will return. This corrupt world will be destroyed. A perfect world will emerge that will never be broken by sin. Only those ransomed by Jesus’ blood will survive to see it. The choice is ours. His invitation is open to all:

“Come!” 
Whoever is thirsty, let him come; and whoever wishes, 
let him take the free gift of the water of life.[8]

Dearest Lord - Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. 

Taking it further...
  • Call 1-888-NEED-HIM or visit www.needhim.org
  • Revelation Song” sung by Kari Jobe. 
  • Do the events foretold in Revelation seem unbelievable? Jesus’ first coming fulfilled over 300 Old Testament prophecies on the coming of the Messiah. There are over 1500 Old and New Testament prophesies of Jesus’ second coming recorded in the Bible. To learn more on biblical prophecy, visit www.truthnet.org
[1] John 3:16-17
[2] Revelation 5:9-10 NLT
[3] John 1:3
[4] Revelation 6: 10 NLT
[5] Revelation 6:16-17
[6] Each of us will stand before God and give an account (Revelation 20:11-15).
[7] 2 Peter 3:9
[8] Revelation 22:17
[9] John 3:16-17

Comments

  1. Well done, Peggi! Yes, it is scary and controversial but how can this world continue as is? The prospect of that is even scarier. His patience is astounding as you so well point out. I hope many people will hear this message.

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