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Revelation; Hark, the Herald Angels

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posted on Dec, 19 2010 @ 04:41 PM
"God rest you merry, gentlemen,
Let nothing you dismay."
"Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord henceforth"- Revelation ch14 v13.

I want to offer some thoughts on the messages proclaimed by the three angels of Revelation ch14.

I'm going to be asking the question; what's the meaning of these proclamations?

The first thing we need to do is to take note of the context.
At first glance, this chapter seems to be the sequel of the account of the Beast in ch13.
But the story of the Beast is really an interruption.
It's part of the "flashback" sequence, beginning in ch12, which breaks into the narrative to explain the background of the Beast and its "war on the saints".
In the main storyline of Revelation, ch14 follows on from the account of the "seven trumpets" which stretches from ch6 to ch11.
That explains the otherwise puzzling phrase "another angel", which introduces the first angel in this chapter.
These three angels follow on directly from the seven angels with trumpets- they are really the eighth, ninth, and tenth in the sequence.
Recognising the true context of the chapter helps us to understand its purpose.
These angels have been sent to explain the significance of the sounding of the seventh trumpet, which was the last event in the story.

The first angel- Judgement comes

The central point of the first proclamation is that "the hour of God's judgement has come".
This really echoes and confirms what was announced by the "mighty angel" in ch10, before the event.
He swore an oath that once the seventh trumpet was sounded there would be "no more time", and then "the mystery of God's will should be accomplished". The old world would be brought to an end- its "times" would expire.

The first angel is now telling us the same story.
The sounding of the seventh trumpet means that the "hour of judgement has come"; this announcement is called an "eternal gospel".
(The proclamation is made to the inhabitants of the earth- "every nation and tribe and tongue and people". These are the same four words that have already been used -ch13 v7- to describe the extent of the authority of the Beast)
The announcement of judgement is a "gospel", because the removal of the old world is "good news" for the victims of the old world.
Presumably it's called "eternal" because there's a permanence in God's will and power to put things right.

The approach of judgement is given as a reason for fearing and worshipping God as the one who made the different parts of the world. The two themes go together, because judgement is about putting right the world God made, making the world more complete.

The second angel- Babylon falls

The second proclamation is that Babylon has fallen, which follows on logically from the first announcement that the hour of judgement has come.
(This is the first time, in fact, that Babylon has been mentioned in Revelation. The reference anticipates the later descriptions, and the wording echoes ch18 vv2-3)

The two scenes at the end of the chapter may as well be brought into this part of the discussion.
They go back to the proclamation of God's judgement against the nations, found in the prophet Joel;
"Put in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe.
Go and tread, for the wine-press is full.
The vat overflows, for their wickedness is great"- Joel ch3 v13.
These two metaphors- the time of the wheat harvest and the time of the wine-harvest- are now developed into little dramas which John can witness.
Both scenes contain a figure associated with "judging the world" in other parts of the Bible.
In the first scene, it is "one like a son of man", as in the vision of Daniel ch7.
In the second scene, it is "the angel who has power over fire". This appears to be the same angel who launches the "seven trumpets" at the beginning of ch8, by throwing fire from the altar upon the earth.

The remarkable depth and breadth of the overflow of the wine-press needs to be looked at more closely.
"Sixteen hundred stadia", as a literal distance, would be about two hundred miles.
But perhaps we should be looking for the symbolic meaning of the number.
"1600" can be broken down into "4x4x10x10". So we can find in this number the symbolism of the number "10", which points us towards "completeness", and also the four directions.
So I'm inclined to understand the distance as indicating "the fullness of the world in all directions".
And in Joel, it should be remembered, the overflowing is ultimately a measure of the wickedness of the world's population.

So these two scenes are not new "events" in the storyline of Revelation.
They're simply additional, metaphorical ways of expressing the message of the first two proclamations- that the hour of judgement has come, and the old world is going to be overthrown.

The third angel- Avoid the Beast

The central message of the third proclamation is the need to avoid any association with the Beast.
Once again, this is the logical consequence of the proclamation that the hour of judgement has come (the Beast is going to be judged).
The message comes first in the form of a dire warning about the fate of those who do associate themselves, by worshipping the Beast or accepting the Mark of the Beast.
As always in Revelation, there's the question of how literally the language of "eternal torture, and the denial of rest" is meant to be understood.
But the essence of the message doesn't depend on literal interpretation.
The point is that receiving the Mark, which indicates loyalty to the Beast, is understood by God as a decision against himself. It is a serious business, with serious consequences.
This amounts to a "call for the endurance of the saints". The logic is that knowing what happens to the followers of the Beast should be motivating the saints to resist the pressure to compromise their faith and attach themselves to the doomed regime.

(This word "endurance" keeps recurring in Revelation.
In fact "This is a call for the endurance of the saints" is a very neat summary of the book's purpose.
The function of Revelation is to encourage the faith and perseverance of a church experiencing tribulation)

The voice- the Blessing

The positive side of the third angel's proclamation is expressed by the voice from heaven;
"Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord henceforth".
This surely relates, in the first instance, to those who have resisted the Beast and carried their resistance to the point of martyrdom. Instead of losing from their resistance, they have gained "rest".

But what does "henceforth" mean? When does the blessing begin?
At first glance, the obvious meaning would be " as from this point in the narrative".
But that point in the narrative is very late in the story; Babylon is about to be destoyed.
Any blessing which starts as late as that seems to be arriving a little late on the scene, almost too late to be of any benefit.
I would prefer to apply the word "henceforth" to the moment when John hears the voice and the message is published in Revelation. It would then cover the martrys of John's own time and onwards.
Or indeed we could take it back to the moment when Christ rose from the dead, and it first became possible to die "in the Lord", and benefit from the power of his resurrection

Finally, while the promise is clearly designed to comfort those who have survived the martyrs or those who see martrydom in prospect, there is perhaps no need to restrict the benefits of the blessing to the martyrs themselves. It is part of a promise which belongs to the church at large;
""For whoever enters God's rest also ceases from his labours as God did from his"- Hebrews ch4 v10

So the very seasonal title of this discussion is not just an example of premeditated exploitation of topicality (although it's that as well). It points towards the birth of Jesus as the ultimate source of the announcements in this chapter.
There is continuity between the the "eternal gospel" proclaimed by these angels, and the "good news" announced to the shepherds.

The journey described in Revelation towards the new Jerusalem is a journey which begins at Christmas.

edit on 19-12-2010 by DISRAELI because: (no reason given)

posted on Dec, 19 2010 @ 06:44 PM

The point is that receiving the Mark, which indicates loyalty to the Beast, is understood by God as a decision against himself. It is a serious business, with serious consequences.

As I pointed out when I was discussing The Mark of the Beast (q.v.), this point needs to be considered and taken seriously when we're trying to identify the Mark. If the Mark is a serious business, then we should not be trying to identify it with something trivial. Being able to find the number "666" in some obscure location is not enough. If the item in question is not something which God could recognise as a conscious decision against himself, prompting him to react by treating the recipient as one of his enemies, then it is not the Mark of the Beast.

posted on Dec, 19 2010 @ 08:26 PM

In the main storyline of Revelation, ch14 follows on from the account of the "seven trumpets" which stretches from ch6 to ch11.

My apologies, this was a typo. It's just possible that no-one might notice and I could get away with it.
But I intended to type "from ch8 to ch11".

posted on Dec, 19 2010 @ 09:32 PM
reply to post by DISRAELI

S&F I just love reading your posts. There starting to become the high point of my visits here to ATS. Keep up the great work!

posted on Dec, 19 2010 @ 09:45 PM
reply to post by dthwraith

Thank you for the encouragement.
Only a few more chapters to go now!

posted on Dec, 20 2010 @ 04:16 PM
One final note for the benefit of anyone who has noticed that these threads on Revelation have been coming out on a weekly basis;
This series of threads has just had its office Christmas party, and will now be taking a Christmas break. I will have other things to do on Boxing Day and the New Year, as will probably most of the people who would have been reading them.

"Glad tidings we bring, to you and your king.
We wish you a merry Christmas and a happy New Year".

posted on Dec, 22 2010 @ 12:19 AM
"Go and tread, for the wine-press is full.
The vat overflows, for their wickedness is great"

posted on Dec, 23 2010 @ 03:32 PM
And I heard a voice from heaven, saying, "Write, 'Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on!'" "Yes," says the Spirit, "so that they may rest from their labors, for their deeds follow with them." REV 14:13 (NAB)

It almost sounds as though there will be a period of time where Babylon is "destroyed", and the people will live afterwards, where the clear line of "demarcation" is drawn, and those who choose to follow the beast and its ideology are doomed.

posted on Jan, 2 2011 @ 04:17 PM
reply to post by thegoodearth

Thank you for that comment.
But is there any reason why that time should not coincide with the Return of Christ?

posted on Jan, 3 2011 @ 08:52 AM
reply to post by DISRAELI

I am trying to puzzle on this currently...
It reads to me as though people may live in a time where
there is a period of clear "good" and "evil".
A time where "blessed are they who die in the Lord"
which to me seems to be a time where there are those who are
not blessed that do not "die" in the Lord...
thinking that there may be a time of living on Earth
where people are definitively enlightened to the way of God,
and have chosen their way of following- either Christ or the way
of Satan. I am meditating on this, currently. There are other passages
that seem to point to this, that I am looking at right now, too.

posted on Jan, 3 2011 @ 09:05 AM

Originally posted by thegoodearth
which to me seems to be a time where there are those who are
not blessed that do not "die" in the Lord...

My first reaction is that surely this is always the case?
In the OP, I was willing to take the time of "blessing" right back to the Resurrection of Christ, which made the blessing possible.
But I will wait to see what other passages you find.

posted on Jan, 3 2011 @ 10:08 AM
reply to post by DISRAELI

Yes, I know, as in "right, captain obvious... lol..."
but then, why would the angel say it like that... "blessed be those who die in the Lord from now on!"
Hmmm. Makes me think way much.
Gee. This is when I sit in adoration and am like, "God, I really wish you would give me that decoder ring I
wanted way back in the day for stupid reasons..."

posted on Jan, 3 2011 @ 10:15 AM
reply to post by thegoodearth

It may be worth bearing in mind that when John was writing the resurrection of Christ was still a very new thing, as compared with the 2000 years that have elapsed since.
It's like the "new name" of Jesus, mentioned in ch3; I still think it could be something as simple as "Lord", which was new in the sense that it was not used in that sense before Easter.

posted on Dec, 6 2011 @ 10:45 AM
There is now an Index, covering all these Revelation threads, at this location;

Index of Revelation threads

This thread is numbered as #30 in the "order of chapters" list and Biblical reference index.

posted on Oct, 2 2012 @ 04:30 PM
Just to clarify;
Nothing in the OP is intended to suggest any particular prophetic significance in the year 2012 or the date 21/12/2012

posted on Jul, 31 2013 @ 11:22 AM
reply to post by DISRAELI

My response to the claims made about the year 2012 was that I could see no prophetic significance in the date.
This position seems to have been vindicated.

posted on Aug, 5 2013 @ 10:41 AM
I have decoded Revelations and Daniel.

Although you are close in some places, you are way off for the most part.

I will give you an important piece of the puzzle that will help you begin to figure it out.

There is numerological 'code' used in the Bible.

This is what it means.

ONE          I AM
TWO         WE ARE
SIX            DARK IS
TEN          ALL IS

Factor this 'code' into your interpretations of the books and you will start to understand what they mean.

I will give you the really, really short version of them though.

They tell of the end of religion as people evolve to a higher understanding of the Divinity that lies within us, just as the Gnostic teachings told. They also tell the truth of the fact that 'God' is a balance of both 'Divine Masculine' and 'Divine Feminine'. That they are not a 'he', but both male and female in balance.

This is the core teaching of the books, that of balance.

They also tell of someone who comes along that will be able to decode the text within book such as (the most important of them) Genesis, Exodus, Daniel, Job, Revelations and Thomas. I have decoded them all, which is more than a little freaky when you realise they talk about you in many places.

These are the only books in the Bible that you really need to understand the truth of God and 'meet' them.

It is not yet time for me to release the interpretations of these books to the world. I wait first to give the Vatican a chance to do the right thing and tell the truth to the world, before I expose them as liars to the world.

If they continue to ignore my requests to tell the world the truth, and do not expose the real teachings of the Bible. I will release the books to the world. They are very shocking, but not in the way people think.

The 'End of times' that they think are coming, actually speak of the end of religion, nothing more.

This is why they are so fearful of it, and make their followers so fearful of it. For they know it will be the end of their dominion over man. No more power, no more money, no more control.

This is why the current pope is said to be the last in the prophecies of the popes. Cause he will be.

I'm going to see to it by bringing the truth to the world.

posted on Aug, 5 2013 @ 10:52 AM
To give you a little bit of perspective on the coding I just gave you.

666 = Darkness of Life

Cause 6 = Darkness .. and 3 = Life.

The 'Holy number' 777 = Light of Life.

This is what 'Jesus' meant when he said; 'He that comes after me, will not be of darkness; but will have the 'light of life'.'

It's because it refers, like many other quotes in the Bible. To the one who will be able to decipher the code in the Bible.

Guess who?

Therefore your 666 and 777, which are 'The Antichrist' and 'The Second-coming' are actually going to be the exact same person.

Someone who is a 'balance' of light and dark.

He that comes to end the lies of the current religions; so that the true essence of the Bible teachings and 'TRUE DIVINITY' can shine upon the world.

Those of enlightenment are those the Bible refers to as 'The Elohim'.

BLOOD: DIVINE WISDOM (Universal Knowledge)
WATER: EARTHLY WISDOM (Worldly Knowledge)
WINE: WISDOM OF MAN (Knowledge of Man)

This is how 'Jesus' converted 'Water' into 'Wine', so it could be drank by the masses. He understood the Earthly wisdom, that he made into something that others could understand.

This is also the essence of 'THE WATER BEARER'.

Someone who comes bearing the true wisdom of interpreting the Bible correctly.

I am one of those Water-bearer, called the Elohim. Of the Western Star.

Truth now comes, and the theologies will now fall.

The easier one for you to interpret would be the Century X quatrains of Nostradamus, that tell of he coming to 'attached to himself' again. The one who comes to reclaim the Church, as is it demanded in Revelation.

The one who decodes it, shall take back the church from 'THE CHILDREN WHO HAVE SETTLED IN A FIELD WHICH IS NOT THEIRS' that is described in Thomas.

Guess who?

It also tells of the dead rising, which refers to the hidden messages within the texts being decoded.

With these new understandings in mind; I wish you the best of luck understanding the truth of Revelations now my friend.

posted on Aug, 5 2013 @ 11:08 AM
reply to post by BornOfSin

I understand the Biblical God as a commmunicator, one who "makes himself known".
For that reason, i do not believe for one moment that he uses numerological codes.
Somone who wants to communicate is not going to use secret, esoteric messages that only a few people can read.

edit on 5-8-2013 by DISRAELI because: (no reason given)

posted on Aug, 5 2013 @ 12:20 PM
You need to remember that the current Bible was not written by 'God'. It was written by man, devoid of God.

And they went to great lengths to hide these truths in code.

If you do not believe this. Then you are a fool looking for meaning you will never find.

No offense intended.

Originally posted by DISRAELI
reply to post by BornOfSin

I understand the Biblical God as a commmunicator, one who "makes himself known".
For that reason, i do not believe for one moment that he uses numerological codes.
Somone who wants to communicate is not going to use secret, esoteric messages that only a few pwoplw can read.

edit on 5-8-2013 by BornOfSin because: (no reason given)

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