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The Mystery of God is Finished - The Book of Revelation
Week 30, 2017
NOTE: In this Word for the Week format, we cannot cover all the details of the Revelation as they deserve without stretching this study out a few more years. Because there are redundancies in the repetition of the sevens in this prophecy, we will address the ones that are crucial for understanding the entirety of the message.
This week we cover:
I saw another strong angel coming down out of heaven, clothed with a cloud;
and the rainbow was upon his head, and his face was like the sun, and his feet like pillars of fire;
and he had in his hand a little book which was open.
He placed his right foot on the sea and his left on the land;
and he cried out with a loud voice, as when a lion roars;
and when he had cried out, the seven peals of thunder uttered their voices.
When the seven peals of thunder had spoken,
I was about to write; and I heard a voice from heaven saying,
"Seal up the things that the seven peals of thunder have spoken and do not write them."
Then the angel whom I saw standing on the sea and
on the land lifted up his right hand to heaven,
and swore by Him who lives forever and ever,
Who created heaven and the things in it, and the earth and the things in it,
and the sea and the things in it, that there will be delay no longer,
but in the days of the voice of the seventh angel,
when he is about to sound, then the mystery of God is finished,
as He preached to His servants the prophets.
This is after the sixth angel has sounded, but before the seventh. The key point here is that “the mystery of God is finished.” What mystery?
There is much debate about this among scholars, as there is with everything in Revelation. Several mysteries of God are addressed in the New Testament, but the most important is the mystery of Christ and His bride, the church. Could this indicate that the bride of Christ will have been completed between the sixth and seventh trumpets? If so, what does this mean?
It is apparent in Scripture that not all believers are part of the bride of Christ. That does not mean that those who are not part of the bride are not saved and have eternal life, but we see distinctions between those who are part of the bride and those invited to the wedding feast.
Jesus, the apostles, and the prophets disclosed many other such distinctions in Scripture. Some Bible teachers avoid addressing this because many take this to the extreme, or promote a spiritual elitism, but they are nevertheless clearly biblical. As Peter warned about Paul’s teachings, “the untaught and unstable distort” (see II Peter 3:16). This has happened with many truths, but avoiding them has not proven to be a deterrent. Anyone who actually reads the Bible will discover these truths. If they are not taught about them the right way, they will likely embrace them in a wrong way and take them to extremes. If they are in Scripture, they are there to be understood, and we must address them.
As with the repetitions of the sevens in Revelation, many of Jesus’ teachings and parables were about the same subject, but addressed from different perspectives. Jesus clearly taught the different levels of positions and authority in eternity. To be the bride of Christ and joint heirs with Him is the highest calling in Scripture. Paul wrote about running a race for the prize. One would hardly run a race for an unknown prize, so it is important for us to know it and to teach it. For this reason, we will dig a little deeper into it next week.
next week 31