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Seven Bowls

The Voice of Sovereign Grace / Doug Agnew
The Truth Network Radio
November 10, 2019 11:00 am

Seven Bowls

The Voice of Sovereign Grace / Doug Agnew

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Have your Bibles with you today.

Turn with me if you would to Revelation 15 to be. Look at verses five through eight after this I looked in the sanctuary of the tent of witness in heaven was opened out of the sanctuary came the seven angels with the seven plagues closed in pure bright linen with golden sashes around their chests. One of the four living creatures gave to the seven angels seven golden block bowls full of the wrath of God who lives forever and ever.

The sanctuary was filled with smoke from the glory of God and from his power, and no one can enter the sanctuary until the seven plagues of the seven angels were finished spray heavenly father we come before your throne today to praise you your great magnificent glorious God's way and in working our way through the book of Revelation with senior glory and ways that humble us deeply heavenly father as we look at this passage today, we pray that our respect for you and that our love for you and their adoration of you might deepen and sweeten heavenly father, I just pray that you would open the Scriptures up to us today that we might understand who you are a little better and heavenly father. That is, we look at the judgments of God Almighty that were poured out and will be poured out on this earth, may we have more compassion for those who don't know you. May we have more of an urgency to tail and share the gospel with those who don't know you, Lord, may it affect our lives in such a way is that we might become more and more like Christ got us and direct us to this passage today. May Jesus be exalted and uplifted by this congregation be edified by student the precious holy name of Jesus that we pray. Amen. You may be seated.

Last week we dealt with the first four verses of Revelation chapter 15 and I called it a respite because we have been working our way through the book of Revelation, and it's just been tough. We have discovered that we as Christians are on a battleground not a playground when a fight not a frolic we been called to cross and not a cushion.

We've been told it for the Christian, there will be persecution. They'll be suffering nobody trial, tribulation and possibly even martyrdom, and it reminds us of the words of the apostle Paul in Philippians chapter 1 verse 29, when he said, for unto you it is given on the behalf of Christ not only to believe upon him, but also to suffer for his sake. Second Timothy chapter 3 verse 12 all who live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution. Philippians chapter 1 verse 21, where Paul said for me to live is Christ, but to die is gain the words of Jesus in John 633 where Jesus said in this world you shall have tribulation, but be of good cheer, for I have overcome the world and James chapter 1 verse 12 Jackie says blessed is the man who remain steadfast under trial when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life which God's promise to those who love him and then in Revelation chapter 2 verse 10 it was Jesus who said, be faithful unto death, that I will give you the crown of life books. That's what we been dealing with for the 414 chapters in the book of Revelation, and God knows us paying those art limitations.

P. 88.

The Scripture says he remembers that we are but does so, he gives us a breath of fresh air to a respite, a time when we can just, put it together and what does he tell us he tells us to look ahead to look into the future to look to the finish line because it will be worth it all. When we see Jesus. He reminds us that the trials of persecutions and tribulations that we are going to go through our temporary, but our future with Christ is eternal. Revelation 15, 124 reminds us he will hold us fast when I fear my faith will fail. He will hold me fast when the tempter would prevail. P will hold me fast I would never keep my whole through life's fearful path for my love is often cold.

P will hold me fast are also in our assurance in Christ is rocksolid personal persecution will not shake us.

Suffering will not shake us trial will not shake us and the world the death, the, the world and the flesh and and and the devil will not shake us because we have this promise and that promise. He is he will hold us fast. Look again at verse two, and in Revelation 15 and I saw what had appeared to be a sea of glass mingled with fire and also those who conquered the beast and its image in the number of its name, standing beside the sea of glass with harps of God in their hands. You see what God has done for us, our God is so admission that he knows the future as well as he does the past and the present. So what is God doing for us P he reaches the retakes that that that veil that curtain of eternity and he pulls it back, that we might get a peek into eternity. And he says this is why you must persevere. This is why you can't quit. This is why you must keep on keeping on, because you have got this great promise is like we we look ahead in the future and we see ourselves standing with Christ at that last day we or they are in our new glorified resurrected bodies, bodies, little never get hurt, they can never sin that can never fail.

They can never to never die bodies that are absolutely perfect and who is with us. Michael Percy Michael Percy was a missionary to Brazil for almost 50 years to preach the gospel until he was 95 years old and preached his last sermon two weeks before he died he will be rejoicing with us and my dad will be with me and my wife will be with me in this church will be with me and we will be praising the Lord.

John describes us this way we have conquered the beast and its image and the number of its name, we have abandoned the deceitfulness of the temporary in order that we might embrace the joy of the eternal, the secular political system that strove to push God out of our lives is going to be standing. They are absolutely humiliated, guilty before a holy God. The false religious system that that mock the Bible that exalted religious pluralism that hated the true Christ.

The word and us is going to be standing there humiliated guilty before God is the vision that God gives us in Revelation chapter 15. It is like a megaphone that just shouts out to all of God's creation.

Jesus one and all those who love Jesus, one with him brothers and sisters that promise. That promise will get you home that promise will put air under your wings that promise will fill your heart with joy that promise will give you everything you need not to quit after John gives us that breath of fresh air.

He gets to the tough stuff and that's where we are today.

Three points I want to share with you number one. The reality of eternal punishment. Verse 55 through six after this I looked in the sanctuary of the tent of witness in heaven was opened out of the sanctuary came the seven angels with seven plagues, clothed in pure bright linen with golden sashes around their chest.

I hear people today who question the integrity of God but because the Bible teaches that God will judge those unbelievers. He will judge the whole entire unbelieving world.

We go back Revelation Revelation chapter 15 verses one through four. We are reminded of the Exodus and the song of Moses, but that is not by accident. God wants us to understand that he is a just God and that all of his decisions are right and that they are just he wants us to understand that these people use I will my God is a God of mercy is a God of love, my God would never send someone to an eternal hail was a problem there. The God that they have is a God of their own mind is just a figment of their imagination is not the biblical God is not the God of Scripture and you know what they're actually saying they are saying that my love is greater and deeper than the God of the Bible's love that same God who sent his only son to the cross of Calvary that he might die and pay the penalty of of our sin, our sin debt and yet they believe their love is greater than that love the pharaoh was worn 10 times about the horrible plagues that through the horrible place to let the people go. It was worn about all these things to these horrible plagues and disease plagues came upon him.

As we saw last week, God was given him a message let the people of Israel go get them out of slavery. Let them go shared with you last week that each one of those plagues that came up in Egypt was a horrible judgment on the false god of fault idle of Egypt. When that template came the plague of the death of the firstborn, Pharaoh lost his own son, the heir to the throne and at that point, Pharaoh gave up.

He relinquished any said to Moses, get out of here. Leave.just go take your people ever want to see your face again and the children of Israel left Egypt they headed out to the promised land they got to the Red Sea at that point in time. Pharaoh's pride begin to build and he said I can't let them get away with this. And so he ordered his troops all the Egyptian army to go out after them.

You remember the story of the there was a great pillar of fire that God used to separate the army of Egypt, from the children of Israel that were right on the. The shore of the of the Red Sea and all of a sudden the Red Sea opened up and parted I was doing a study of that years ago and came to find out that the word that she used to describe the water standing up straight, what is the same word that we use for Jell-O God congealed the waters. Hey he made Jell-O out of the waters adjusted up straight in the children of Israel went through on dry land and a walk-through they got to the other side. When they got to the other side, and everyone was safe. Then God pulled up the pillar of fire. The Egyptian army came through as they were right in the middle of those two congealed standing walls of water. God and congealed them, and God melted those waters and the waters came crashing down completely, killing and destroying the entire Egyptian army of Pharaoh along with them. They were doing archaeological work in that area just a few years ago and when they did it late. They went down into the bottom of the Red Sea and they found a plethora of chariot wheels chariot wheels that were mired up in the mud that it been protected there for 4000 years that we would know that we can trust the Bible that what the Bible says is true but is Israelites watch the destructions of the Egyptians. What did they do they cheer, they rejoiced. They praised God. Verse four says that they sang the song of Moses, who will not fear you, oh Lord, and glorify your name for you alone are holy. All nations will come and worship you for your righteous acts have been revealed.

I don't think it's a coincidence that they first saw that we have in the in the in the Bible is the song of Moses and the last song that we have in the Bible is the song of Moses, that becomes the song of the Lamb. When Moses watch God destroy Pharaoh in the Egyptian army. He rejoiced. He praised God he lifted the Lord up in all kinds of adoration and worship and praise this judgment.

This destruction of Pharaoh is called here in the Scripture, a righteous act or righteous act.

It was right in holy and good that Pharaoh and his followers the utterly destroyed in the Red Sea and brothers and sisters it is right. It is holy and it is good that all those who reject the payment that Jesus Christ made on the cross for sinners, the eternally judged the same John who is writing down the words the book of Revelation was there at the cross, he was there to watch everything that took place PE heard pilot of bringing the this the statement of condemnation down on Jesus that he is to be executed. He watched the Roman soldiers take Jesus and and time talk whipping post at rip his garments from his back and then take a cat of nine tails will and whipping across his back. 39 lashes until there was no flesh left on his back and watch the. The soldiers take the crown of thorns and crush it down on his braille. He wants a soldiers lay Jesus down on that rugged cross and nailed huge spikes iron spikes to his hands in and through his feet. They watch the soldiers take the cross and and lifted up in the air and then watch it fall down into that whole John all Jesus bones out of joint. John listened as he saw Jesus up on the cross and hurting, say, my God, my God, why have cell forsaken me, and then he watched Jesus down the cross and right before Jesus's death. He breathed out these words, it is finished. What what was that all about Jesus was saying my my goal, my commission was to go and die on the cross for what purpose, in order that I might suffer the hail of all the people who God is given me from before the foundation of the earth and he took our sin, the sin that that went with the punishment for the sin that we deserved and took it upon himself. I believe that is John writes writes down these words in Revelation chapter 15, that his mind goes back to that day when he watched Jesus die and he heard Jesus say it is finished.

I believe his mind also went back to the day that his brother James was killed by the sword by the order of King Herod Agrippa and his life was taken. His brother's life was taken for doing what for preaching the gospel. I believe you remembered back that day to his friend Simon Peter, who was crucified upside down for preaching the gospel. However, I think you remembered that day when Jesus died, he looked over the Pharisees and they were mocking him on the cross and laughing at his death. I believe he remembered the mission who was the Emperor of Rome, who ordered him to be exiled on the island of Patmos and put them out. They are separated him from his family from his church from his loved ones. I believe you was remembering all of that and he views the coming judgment of the Christ rejecting world is what is a righteous act he can rejoice, for they of Hertha part of God. Verses five and six tell us that the seven angels came out of the sanctuary of the tent of witness.

Where was this this particular tent of witness.

This tabernacle where was it did is in heaven now on earth. We had a model for this.

It was a tabernacle in the wilderness tabernacle in the wilderness had two rooms. The first ring was called the holy place, only the priests could go into that that room. Then there was a second room that was separated by 6 inch thick veil that was called the holy of holies only one person could go into that room and him only one timely year and that was on the day of atonement. On the day of atonement.

He cleansed himself over and over again and any took a basin of goat's blood, and he walked back behind the veil and he took a branch of hyssop dipped it down into that goat's blood and sprinkle it on the mercy seat and when he did the Shekinah glory of God, the great shining cloud of God came and would hover between the wings of the cherubim on the mercy seat on the top of the ark of the covenant, and when that happened. God was leading the high priest in all of Israel know if their sins had been forgiven for that year that that tabernacle.

That tabernacle was the holiest spot on all the earth and it's just a picture of the tabernacle in heaven for the unbelievers that tabernacle in heaven and those seven angels that have the seven bowls that represent horrible judgment to them that tabernacle the Angels and the seven bowls represent great mercy great mercy to us.

Richard Phillips of the following the appearing of this heavenly tabernacle should comfort Christians who face the threat or the reality of worldly afflictions. It says that no Pharaoh or dimension can persist in the persecution of the church without in due time receiving God's terrible wrath.

Today, Christians are menaced by the most savage violence in lands dominated by Islam and the West radically secular governments are becoming increasingly intolerant of Christians, truth and morality so that soft persecution is likely to become much harder as a result, the Christian church faces a dire worldwide threat that would have been unimaginable hundred 50 or even 20 years ago. But what is most important has not changed. God remains enthroned in heaven, so that nothing can transpire without his will is holy character does not change so that sin must always be judged both in history and it and edit the end is covenant faithfulness ensures that his people will be upheld under persecution so as not to falter and that their oppressors will be cast down under plagues that come from heaven. His mercy revealed in the Bible's covenant of grace ensures that believers in Jesus will personally be redeemed from sin and corporately redeemed to stand beside the crystal city of heaven rejoicing in praise. Remember the book of Revelation is not just a future look at what will happen in those days immediately preceding the second coming of Jesus Christ. It is much more than that. Remember the book of Revelation is to be divided up into seven sections in each of those sections is a picture of the church age. From the first coming of Christ to the second coming of Christ to the wrath of God that is being poured out by the seven angels through the seven bowls is a promise to every generation of Christians and what is the promise is the promise that we will be vindicated that they will not get away with their hatred of God in their hatred of the word of God in their hatred of us. The apostle John wrote the book of Revelation was thrown into a vat of boiling oil under the order of the mission the Emperor. He lived through it God one through them yet.

He had the book of Revelation to write an the Emperor when Domitian found out that he had not died by being thrown to available and always in exiling exiling putting only island of Patmos separate him from his family separate him from his children separating from his wife separating from his church and then he will be able to preach to anyone anymore isolated on this island can imagine the painful scars that you have on your body after being thrown into of that bull and Olin living through it.

Johns was covered from head to toe with those scars.

As John writes down these words of Revelation chapter 15 I can imagine him remembering Domitian mocking him and laugh and adding at St. John's Eagle preach tonight your place of the seagulls got your regular preach to the hermit crabs and John is put sales on your on your burns alone. Your scars let bandages on your wounds, who's going to do that for you. John.

Revelation 15 reminds John that his suffering is going to be temporary, but Domitian suffering is going to be a term.

Revelation 15 was written for John's generation brothers and sisters. It was also written for every generation of Christians all the way up to the time of the second coming of Christ.

It was written for the generation of John Hus who was who was burned at the stake for preaching the gospel. It was written for the generation of of of Nicholas Ridley and Hugh Latimer in London who were burned at the stake for preaching the gospel was written for the generation of John Patton whose great friends were were missionary friends were eaten by cannibals. It was written for our generation to solve tens of thousands of Christians that were beheaded at the at the order of Idi Amin and whose bodies were taken and used to fill up the potholes in in Uganda boats. It was written for every single one of us.

Revelation 15 fills every generation of believers that they are suffering has meaning God sees it.

And God uses it for his glory. I got a devotion I get it every morning from a John Piper own email call solid Joyce and yesterday I got one and I thought this is not by accident. This is the providence of God, it was just a great great devotional from second Thessalonians chapter 1 verses seven through 10 called, marveling at the end of history and it parallels right perfectly with what the message is in Revelation 15. Let me read you. First of all, second Thessalonians, one 7010 and then what John Piper said about it. God will grant relief to you who are afflicted as well as to us when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven. In his mighty angels in flaming fire inflicting vengeance on those who do not know God and all those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. They will suffer the punishment of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might. When he comes on that day to be glorified in his saints, and to be marveled at among all who have believed. Piper said this when Jesus returns to this earth which is promise to do those who have not believed the gospel. Paul says will suffer the punishment of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory. This might this is a terrible prospect that you terrify all unbelievers who hear this truth and oh how it should sober us who do believe in, fill us with seriousness about what is at stake in this world. Oh how it should cause compassion to rise in our hearts for those who do not believe or do not even know the gospel, but to sustain us in all our afflictions here Paul gives us to do amazing words of encouragement and hope God will grant relief to you who are afflicted if we experience a terrible intensification of affliction near the end of history.

God's word is hold fast relief is on the way, your afflictions will not have the last word in your seemingly powerful adversaries will regret the day they touch the Lord's people with incomes. The best word of encouragement and hope.

Not only will we get relief when the Lord comes, but we will get the greatest experience that we were created for.

In the first place. We will see his glory and marvel at it in such a way that he will be glorified in us for all the world to see .2 is the fidelity of the seven plagues were 7081 of the four living creatures gave to the seven angels seven golden bowls full of the wrath of God who lives forever and ever in the sanctuary was filled with smoke from the glory of God and from his power, and no one can enter the sanctuary until the seven plagues of the seven angels were finished what I want you to notice. Here's the sanctuary is feel with smoke from the glory of God from its power, and no one could enter into the sanctuary until the work of the Angels was finished. So what's the message. The message is this. Nothing can stop this coming judgment Exodus 40 verse 35 tells us that God's glory visibly visibly fail on the tent of meeting in a cloud of smoke and glory so that Moses was not able to enter we go to Isaiah chapter 6 and you remember the vision that Isaiah saw.

He went into the temple of the Lord. He saw the Lord hide lifted up on his throne in the Scripture says that the smoke field. The temple and what was the what was the reaction of Isaiah. Isaiah fell on his face before this great God, trembling and shaking and he said woe is me, for I am undone from an unclean man who lives among unclean people that work for undone, we would describe it is emotionally just fell apart. We see something similar when King Solomon dedicated the temple first Kings 810 through 11 and when the priest came out of the holy place, a cloud filled the house of the Lord so that the priests could not stand to minister because the cloud the glory of the Lord feel the house of the Lord. So what is the meaning of the smoke filling the sanctuary here is this nothing can stop this judgment, there will not be a second chance. One of the things that scares me about the dispensational teaching concerning the second coming of Christ at the thing that really bothers me is the second chance narrative that comes out of dispensationalism dispensational essay the first of all, be a rapture of the church where we are. The church is taken up to meet the Lord in the clouds. We believe that to we just differ on the timing of when that's going to take place.

We believe it's at the very last day they don't. They believe that this can happen first. Then there will be a seven year period of tribulation, and during that seven year period of tribulation people will get a second chance and there will be many. They say that will come to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. During that time I've heard people actually say hey if that's the truth that I'm just a way to if that's the truth I'm a live like the devil do what I wanted to just enjoy myself here on this earth. If the rapture happens. And although it's real. And then I'll surrender to Christ, then bad idea. Folks bad idea. Don't do that. Don't do that because the Scripture teaches us that not always a time a decision today is the day of salvation. You don't know if you got seven years ahead of you. If I read the Scripture right you don't have seven year after the rapture of the church because that'll be the end that will ended up. And besides that you don't even know if you got tomorrow or not this passage, along with countless others tells us plainly of the finality of eternal judgment. When Christ comes. There'll be no second chance it will be intense, it will be quick and it will be final.

I love my dispensational brothers will tell you the is that theological error is causing a lot of people have a false hope and that false hope to destroy them for all eternity.

My .3 is this a lesson from the saints in heaven we go back to verses three and four in the same chapter.

They sang the song of Moses the servant of God and the song of the Lamb, saying great and amazing are your deeds over Lord God the Almighty just and true are your ways, King of the nations who will not fear you will Lord, and glorify your name for you alone are holy men worship you for your righteous acts have been revealed. Get this picture in your mind. This is a scene of us with Christ in heaven the saints of God, or with Jesus Christ. This is a future picture of you and me, Peter and John Richardson lives John Bunyan and Charles Spurgeon, DL Moody, my grandma, my dad, my wife, me and you altogether with Christ and what are we doing well. What is Scripture say about us. It says that in verse two describes us as the ones we have conquered the beast and the image in the number of its name in one of the saints in heaven doing they are singing the song of Moses, they are singing that song to him who will not fear you, oh Lord, and glorify your name and you know what he's telling us he said that's were to be doing heaven in heaven so why not you be doing that right now there will be persecution there will be suffering.

There will be tough times. There will be trial there will be possibly even martyrdom. But here's his promise, he will hold you fast. He will hold you fast is pray. Heavenly father, we thank you we praise you. We honor you would glorify you and Lord, we can't do it enough father we ask today that you would help us that we might realize that all that I have said the day and all that we have read in teen's truth and the father we have a world to reach a lost world that desperately needs to hear the gospel. Eric was sharing with us about the that problems are going on in Japan. The number of Christians there in Japan. Lord is less than 1%. We would pray Lord that you would help us to have a heart for Japan that we might have a heart for the nations that are under the lot of Islam and that Lord we would do all that we could to carry out the great commission and to reach these people with the gospel. Heavenly father, may we not be complacent. May we be a people who care about your word who care about your glory, and a bail before you, in humble adoration and thanksgiving got directors Lord in all that we do in our lives bring you honor and glory is in Jesus holy and precious thing we pray. Amen

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