CHAPTER SEVEN

REVELATION CHAPTER SEVEN

 

CHAPTER SEVEN PREFACE

 

Revelation 7 is parenthetical. By that we mean that in Revelation 7 there is no mention of the seals; up to this point we have been looking at the seals. We come through the sixth seal in Revelation 6:12, and yet, the seventh seal does not occur until Revelation 8:1. Therefore, these events recorded in Revelation 7 happen within a gap telling us about something that takes place during the Tribulation. It must be something that takes place during the seals because when we get to Revelation 6:12-17, the Tribulation is over and the wrath of God is coming on the "day of His wrath." But when we go to Revelation 7, we have a place where, before all these events take place, 144,000 Jews are "sealed." So, Revelation 7 is telling us something that takes place during the six seals. The chronology then closes with the seventh seal at the beginning of Revelation 8.

 

So, here, in Chapter 7, we see a respite in the breaking of the "Seals" that God's "elect of Israel" may be "sealed. " As God reserved 7000 in the days of Ahab who did not bow the knee to Baal (1 Kings 19:18), so there will be a "remnant according to the election of grace" (Romans 11:4-6), and God will reserve 144,000 of Israel who during the period of the Tribulation will not bow the knee to Antichrist. This sealing is not the Sealing of the Holy Spirit, by whom the Believer is sealed (Ephesians 1:13-14), but it is a "sealing" at the hand of Angels. Christ refers to it in Matthew 24:31. What this sealing is we are told in Revelation 14:1. The "Father's Name" is to be written on their foreheads. They were "Sealed" on their foreheads where others could see it. Theirs was no secret discipleship. In the same public manner the followers of Antichrist will be "Sealed" in their Foreheads or on their right hand, with the MARK OF THE BEAST" which is the number of his name, or 666, Revelation 13:16-18.

 

The 144,000, 12,000 from each Tribe, will be of the earthly Israel, the literal seed of Abraham, living at that time, and not of a mystical or spiritual Israel. Though the "Twelve Tribes" were long ago lost among the nations, their whereabouts is not unknown to God. And though they may have lost their genealogical books and records, so as not to be able to trace their Tribal descent, God knows where they are, and who is who, and in that day the angels, with omniscient precision, will seal them according to their Tribes, 12,000 from each Tribe.

 

The Angel who has charge of the sealing comes from the EAST. This is significant. It intimates that the "Sealed Ones" have their gaze directed toward the "sun-rising," as if looking for the fulfillment of the promise in Malachi, "Unto you that fear My name shall the 'SUN OF RIGHTEOUSNESS' arise with healing in His wings. " Malachi 4:2. The "Elect" then of Israel will be those who fear Christ's name," and who, like as Simon and Anna watched for His First Coming, will be looking for the coming of their Messiah.

 

There is a remarkable difference in the names of the Tribes as here recorded and the names of the original Twelve Tribes. Here the names of Dan and Ephraim are omitted, and the names of Joseph and Levi are substituted. Why is this? We will see the reason for this omission in our study below.

 

The bottom line for the omission of their names in this list of these "SEALED ONES" is to show that the Tribes of Dan and Ephraim must pass through the Great Tribulation unprotected by sealing.

 

Reference Scriptures:

Revelation 7: 1 - And after these things I saw four angels standing on the four corners of the earth, holding the four winds of the earth, that the wind should not blow on the earth, nor on the sea, nor on any tree.

 

Let us take notice of the expression - "four corners of the earth." This expression has led some scholars to say that the Bible is unscientific. They say that it is old-fashioned. They say, "Look at that expression, it has to be an allegory which makes all that John wrote in the Book of Revelation just an allegory too. He spoke about the "four corners" of the earth. He believed in the pagan Hebrew concept of an earth that was flat with four corners." But did the Hebrews really think the earth was flat? See the reference in Isaiah 40:22

 

What about expressions we use today? Many, if not all, Marine Recruiting Stations have posters that say, "Uncle Sam's Marines are serving the U. S. on the four corners of the earth." In plain words, God uses the same familiar expression, taking for granted that we've got enough sense to know what He means. The four corners are north, south, east, and west. Isn't it amazing how God uses the popular language of common ordinary people so that they can read the Bible for themselves and not have to have an interpreter? We won't have an alibi when we get to the judgment seat of Christ and say, "We didn't know!" The Bible is written for sinners between Adam and the end of the Millennium. Consequently, the Bible is written in plain language that anybody can understand, and often uses common, ordinary language that is not "scientific."

 

These four corners are north, south, east, and west. In Isaiah 40:22, He said the earth is a circle. In Luke 17, He says that it is day and night on both sides of the earth at the same time! So Luke (50 AD) and Isaiah (780 BC) are far ahead of Columbus.

Revelation 7: 2,3 - And I saw another angel ascending from the east, having the seal of the living God: and he cried with a loud voice to the four angels, to whom it was given to hurt the earth and the sea, Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads.

 

"All hell" cannot break loose against nature and the earth until this remnant of Israel is sealed. Since "all hell has broken loose" in Revelation 6:12-15, then Revelation 7 is obviously parenthetical, telling about something that took place before the seals began to be opened.

 

Revelation 7: 4 - And I heard the number of them which were sealed: and there were sealed an hundred and forty and four thousand of all the tribes of the children of Israel.

 

 

Now, this is one of the most important passages in the Bible because this is the passage used by the Seventh Day Adventists, Mormons, and Jehovah Witnesses to bolster their "theologies." All of them just love this passage! They all go beyond the Church Age and get into a dispensation that no one is in yet! And then pervert the word of God to teach salvation by works. They, as do all self-righteous, unsaved, lost people, think they are smart and good enough to make it to heaven with just a little help from Jesus Christ.

 

Notice in the passage that these are sealed servants (verse 3); the "servants of our God" is always used of Israel. (Hey, Bereans! Check it out!) The manner of their sealing is found in Ezekiel 9: 1-8. They are marked in the forehead with ink (Ezekiel 9:4-8), and they are marked with the name of God the Father, which is "Jehovah." Because this 144,000 is marked with the name of Jehovah, we have a bunch of self-righteous sinners in this age that pervert and wrest the word of God. They try to take promises that don't belong to them, and say that the "grave" is "hell," and that "hell" is the "grave" (when the grave is the grave, and hell is hell!) They run around saying that since the servants of Revelation 7 have Jehovah in mind that they are Jehovah "Witnesses." Therefore, these Watchtower Society people call themselves "Jehovah Witnesses," and claim to be the Jews in this passage. Hence, Rutherford and Russell (Jehovah Witness's founders) write, "Millions now living shall never die." They meant that we are all now in the Tribulation, and that if we survive until the end we will reign on earth forever, in a mortal body. [I don't know about you, but as I look around, I am not in the "Tribulation" that is described in the Book of Revelation!]

 

"Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads. (See Deuteronomy 32:5.) And I heard the number of them which were sealed: and there were sealed an hundred and forty and four thousand of all the tribes of the children of Israel" (see Isaiah 49:6).

 

Notice, please, the 144,000 are not:

  • "Jehovah Witnesses."
  • "Seventh Day Adventists.
  • "Christians."
  • "Israel of God."
  • "Spiritual Jews."

 

They are 144,000 of all the "T-R-I-B-E-S of the children of Israel." They are not spiritual Jews. They are not spiritual Israelites. They are not Abraham's seed, spiritually. They are 144,000 of the twelve tribes. (We could quote that to a Seventh Day Adventist, Mormon, Campbellite, or Jehovah Witness until we are black and blue in the face, and he will never believe that it means what it says, where it says it, because he has been taught that it doesn't mean what it says, as it says it, where it says it! A common characteristic of these people who profess to be authorities on the word of God, is that every single one of them will, sooner or later, reach some passage where they say that it means something that it doesn't say.

 

This passage says "144,000 of all the tribes of the children of Israel." Therefore, it is the "tribes of the children of Israel." It is not the "tribes of the spiritual believers." It is not the "children of spiritual Israel." It is not the "spiritual Jew." It is not the "angel" Moroni. It is not Joe Smith and his gold plates. It is 144,000 of all the tribes of the children of Israel. That's it!

Revelation 7: 5-8 - Of the tribe of Juda were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Reuben were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Gad were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Aser were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Nephthalim were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Manasses were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Simeon were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Levi were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Issachar were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Zabulon were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Joseph were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Benjamin were sealed twelve thousand.

 

There were twelve thousand from each tribe - Juda, Reuben, Gad, Aser, Nepthalim, Manasses, Simeon, Levi, lssachar. Zabulon, Joseph, and Benjamin. There are 144,000 literal, visible children of Israel, from each one of the literal, visible twelve tribes, and they are named.

 

Now in the passage, observe that there have been several substitutions. In verse 8, we have the "tribe of Joseph" given. Yet Joseph had two sons, Ephraim and Manasseh - Manasses is found in verse 6, but Ephraim is omitted - so we find the word Joseph substituted for Ephraim. We also find in the passage (in verse 7), Levi as one of the twelve tribes. Yet, Levi was the thirteenth, or the priestly tribe; Levi has been substituted for another tribe that is missing. The tribe that is missing is Dan. Two tribes are missing in the list - Ephraim and Dan. (We can study about Ephraim in the Book of Hosea.) The "Mormons" or "Latter Day Saints" claim to come from Ephraim, which is rather peculiar (Hosea 11:12). Ephraim is not sealed in the Tribulation; their name is blotted out under heaven in the Book of Hosea. They are said to be "joined to idols" and God says, "Leave them alone!" (Hosea 4:17). So we find Joseph replacing Ephraim and Levi replacing Dan. (The references which explain this are Amos 8: 14, Deuteronomy 29:20, Leviticus 24:11.)

 

Very briefly, let us study why the tribe of Dan has a place in the prophecies of God that no other tribe has. (It is definitely a bad place.)

 

The first time in the Bible that there is any mention of the tribe of Dan is Genesis 14:14. Here we are told about the location of his city. (Genesis 14:14 is one of the supposed proofs that Moses did not write Genesis. Here is the reasoning. The twelve tribes of Israel did not settle the land of Palestine until the Book of Joshua, after Moses was dead, so Moses could not have known where the city of Dan was. In Genesis 14:14 we are told that the city of Dan was located in north Palestine, up near Damascus [verse 15]. The "scholars" say that Moses could not have known, and therefore, Moses did not write Genesis; but this overlooks two things.

  1. It overlooks the fact that Joshua was Moses' minister and had the same Spirit on him and the same commission to continue what Moses had started.
  2. It also omits the fact that before Moses died he was taken up on Pisgah, east of Jordan, and was shown all the promised land by God, "even to Dan!" Deuteronomy 34:1, "And Moses went up from the plains of Moab unto the mountain of Nebo, to the top of Pisgah, that is over against Jericho. And The Lord shewed him all the land of Gilead, unto Dan."

 

Therefore, Moses knew where the place was. The only problem that comes up is whether he wrote the passage in Genesis 14:14 after God showed it to him. If he did, he wrote it right before he died. Be that as it may, whether the Mosaic authorship includes every single word and verse in Genesis or not, Moses is still the author of the book, and any additions to it are going to be taken care of by Joshua because Joshua had the same commission. In Deuteronomy 34:9 we find this where he continues, and also in the Book of Joshua.

 

"Dan" is first mentioned in Genesis 14:14, and the context is the rebellion of nine kings (with the number 13 appearing the first time in our Bibles (verse 4). This is where the "giants," the remnant of "the Sons of God" (verse 5) are found, the "Rephaims" and the "Emims" (and where Lot is also found, who is said to be present at the Second Coming of Christ, in type (Luke 17:28-30). So Dan's first appearance is here. Of course, here he is mentioned as a city, which is not founded until later, but here the name is just given as a location reference.

 

Dan is mentioned, by birth, in Genesis 30:6. Dan is the first son that Rachel has. She has this son by "proxy. " She has this son by her handmaid, out of the will of God. Bragging, because she is jealous of her sister (verse 1), she says, "God hath judged me" (which He had), "and hath also heard my voice" (which He had), "and hath given me a son," (which He did not!) (Rachel makes the same mistake that Eve makes, when Eve said, "I have gotten a man from the Lord." She has a man physically, but this man is wrong spiritually.) The first son that Rachel has is Dan, which means "judge"(Genesis 30:6).

 

The first prophecy found on Dan is given when Jacob is dying. Jacob says:

"Dan shall judge his people as one of the tribes of Israel" (Genesis 49:16). Not saying that he is one of the tribes, but that he will judge as one of the twelve tribes of Israel.

 

"Dan shall be a serpent by the way, an adder in the path, that biteth the horse heels, so that his rider shall fall backward" (Genesis 49:17).

 

This tribe of Dan has a rough future. In Genesis 49:17 Dan is called a "serpent," and in Deuteronomy 33:22 he is called a "lion." The only person we know in the Bible who is like unto a lion and a serpent is Satan. (Jesus is called "the lion of the tribe of Juda," but is never likened to a serpent, except in His death on the cross, John 3: 14.) The Devil is called a "roaring lion" in 1 Peter 5:8, and is called a "serpent" in Revelation 12:9. This is Dan's connection.

 

Does this seem farfetched? Let's continue to look at Dan and see just how farfetched it really is.

 

In the Book of Leviticus, which deals with all the priestly rules and regulations, we have an incident mentioned in detail concerning a man who cursed, and then his punishment is given.

 

"And the son of an Israelitish woman, whose father was an Egyptian, went out among the children of Israel: and this son of the Israelitish woman and a man of Israel strove together in the camp; And the Israelitish woman's son blasphemed the name of the Lord, and cursed. And they brought him unto Moses: (and his mother's name was Shelomith, the daughter of Dibri, of the tribe of Dan:)" (Leviticus 24:10,11).

 

This is the first actual case mentioned in the Bible of cursing. The one case of cursing under the Mosaic Law (that is mentioned by name) is a case of a man from the tribe of Dan, blaspheming the name of the Lord. (We'll get into the significance of this when we get into Revelation 13, where the Antichrist lifts up his voice "to blaspheme" those that dwell in heaven.)

 

We find, therefore, that the tribe of Dan has a rather peculiar place among the 12 tribes. We notice that the one judge of Israel who really "messed up" in a big way, and finally committed suicide, was from this tribe (Judges 13:2). We know the man as Samson, and his history is found in Judges 13-16. But, we are not through with the tribe of Dan yet. In Judges 17:1 the tribe of Ephraim pops up. (Remember, in the list we are studying in Revelation 7, Ephraim has been replaced by Joseph, and Dan has been replaced by Levi.) Now, Levi, Ephraim, and Dan all are mentioned together right in the middle of Judges 17,18.

 

"And there was a man of mount Ephraim, whose name was Micah" (Judges 17:1). His mother cursed (or swore) about a vow she had made - Judges 17:2. This was because she had dedicated money to "make a graven image, and a molten image," as an "aid to worship"-Judges 17:3. This house where Micah lived was a "house of gods." (It was like a "Via Dolorosa," with images all around, as kind of an "aid to worship"!)

 

"And there was a young man out of Bethlehem-judah of the family of Judah, who was a Levite, and he sojourned there. And Micah said unto him, Dwell with me, and be unto me a FATHER and a PRIEST, and I will give thee ten shekels of silver by the year, and a suit of apparel, and thy victuals. So the Levite went in" (Judges 17:7,10).

 

Here, more than 1200 years before Christ, the outstanding thing happens, a "religion" is manufactured, complete with a priesthood who were called "Father" and had special suits of apparel! Any "religion" that says they are the official priesthood which Christ established on earth is in error. Christ established no priesthood on earth but a priesthood of believers. (Simon Peter confirmed this in 1 Peter 2:1-8 with words so clear that we don't need any interpretation; all we have to do is read.

 

In this passage, in Judges 17:10, Micah says, "Dwell with me, and be unto me a father and a priest." Is this clear? The first time that a priest was ever called "father," the first time that a "father" was a priest, the first time a man ever asked a priest to be a "father" for him, and the first time that a man ever called a priest by the name of "father," is Judges 17:10. We don't find anything like this in the Book of Acts, Romans, Matthew, Mark, Luke, or John, except where Jesus said, "And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your father, which is in heaven" (Matthew 23:9). (Jesus was correcting these Baalite "priests.") We will never read in the New Testament that we are to call some priest "father," but we find it in Judges 17:10. Also, in the context, is a museum of idols as an "aid to worship."

 

The chapter, strangely enough, has thirteen verses in it, and concludes with Micah saying, "Now know I that the Lord will do me good (not because I believe the word of God, not because I have assurance of eternal life, based on God's word, but) seeing I have a Levite to my priest." The fellow thought surely God would do him good, since he found somebody to dump the blame on, and bear the load for him, and argue the Bible in his place, and answer the "heretics" for him so that he wouldn 't have to study the Bible himself!

 

Now Dan enters.

 

"In those days there was no king in Israel: and in those days the tribe of the Danites sought them an inheritance to dwell in; for unto that day all their inheritance had not fallen unto them among the tribes of Israel" (Judges 18: 1).

 

Along come the children of Dan, travelling northward, and they come to Micah's house (Judges 18:3,4). They talk with this priest called "father." They go their way, and they go up by the Zidonians (Judges 18:7). (Zidon is up on the western coast of Palestine, north of the Sea of Galilee.) Then they come back (18:11), and in going to battle (18:13) they come the third time to Micah's house, go in, and talk to the priest again.

 

"And they said unto him, Hold thy peace, lay thine hand upon thy mouth, and go with us, and be to us a father and a priest: is it better for thee to be a priest unto the house of one man, or that thou be a priest unto a tribe and a family in Israel?" (Judges 18:19).

 

So this priest goes with the tribe of Dan, and they go up and they dwell in the city called "Laish" (18:27), and call it "Dan" (18:29), and the tribe of Dan is in total apostasy from this date (1300 BC) up to 800 BC, when the northern tribes go into captivity! For more than 400 years this tribe is in apostasy and is in fellowship with a bunch of Zidonian Baal-worshippers; and they establish a world famous "Micah religion." "And he said, Ye have taken away my gods which I made, and the priest, and ye are gone away: and what have I more? and what is this that ye say unto me, What aileth thee? (Judges 18: 24).

 

Returning to our text, the last time we left the tribe of Dan (in Judges), they were up near Zidon fellowshipping with a bunch of Phoenician Baal-worshippers. However, when we read the Book of 1 Kings, we really see them up in all their glory. Here we begin to learn about the kind of people the tribe of Dan was "fellowshipping" with, and we find ample reason why Dan should be omitted in the Book of Revelation.

 

1 Kings 16:29-33, "And in the thirty and eighth year of Asa king of Judah began Ahab the son of Omri to reign over Israel: and Ahab the son of Omri reigned over Israel in Samaria twenty and two years. And Ahab the son of Omri did evil in the sight of the Lord above all that were before him. And it came to pass, as if it had been a light thing for him to walk in the sins of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, that he took to wife Jezebel the daughter of Ethbaal king of the Zidonians, and went and served Baal, and worshipped him. And he reared up an altar for Baal in the house of Baal, which he had built in Samaria. And Ahab made a grove; and Ahab did more to provoke the Lord God of Israel to anger than all the kings of Israel that were before him" (1 Kings 16:29-33).

 

In this passage all Israel (the northern tribes) adopts Baal worship, whereas before, it had only been Dan, one of the ten northern tribes. Israel gets "in cahoots" with a Baal-worshipping king, married to a Zidonian Baal-worshipper, Jezebel. There is no doubt about what kind of religion this is; it is Baal worship, and is warned against throughout the Bible. Notice, "the grove" which Ahab builds; it is forbidden in Deuteronomy 16:21,22. Little statues set up with groves and bushes growing around them characterize this kind of Baal-worship. (Who would do a thing like that!)

 

In 1 Kings 18, let us mark the other characteristics of this Baal-worship. In 1 Kings 18:10, notice that the black-robed priests who are called "father" (the prophets of Baal), are in close fellowship with the king and queen. They are primarily a political group. (Elijah is the true prophet in the passage, but he is not in good with "the powers that be" at all.) What religious group today has this kind of relationship with the existing political powers? If we were to point to the Roman Catholic Church, we would be right! [I can't change the facts of history regarding details that are true of the Catholic Church. I have saved friends that are Catholic, I have relatives that are Catholic. But facts are facts, I must tell them as I know it even if it harelips the devil!]

 

"Vatican Imperialism in the 20th Century," by Avro Manhattan, Zondervan Publishing Company, New York, 1964, will show a relationship that the Roman Catholic Church has with politics. (The favorable relationship of the Catholic Church with Nazism began in Rome, with a succession of military victories by Hitler in 1938 and 1939. The pope ordered the entire Roman Catholic hierarchy to stop criticizing the German Third Reich and to offer "prayers for the Fuhrer." [Bereans check it out!] By the way, the Montini, as Secretariat for the Vatican, was doing his ground work in Germany from 1938-1948, in preparation for the work that he was going to do to get Germany back under the fold of the Roman Catholic Church. Note that the most important leaders of Germany immediately following WW II were Erhardt and Adenauer who were Roman Catholics! Hmm! Think about the "political power" this religious group still has today!

 

These Baal-worshippers (1 Kings 18) were in good with the king and the queen. As "priests" they were not primarily religious; they were political. Their religion was merely "a means to an end." Notice that they worship Baal (1 Kings 18:25), and their proof of being "the one true church" is fire coming down from heaven to answer their prayers, supposedly. Baal, then, is the "god of fire," in most religions the sun god. (Astaroth, in the Old Testament, is the moon goddess, "the queen of heaven." Where have we heard that before?

 

Then, there is Baal, the god of thunder or the god of fire.) The word "Baal" in English eventually becomes "bull." In 1 Kings 18: 26, we read that the worship services of the Baal-worshippers last until 12 o'clock noon.

 

There can be no doubt in the Bible at all about the identification of Baal-worshippers, and we can locate them early in history. They have priests who are called 'Father,' they worship the sun god on Sun-day until 12 o'clock noon, and they wear a particular kind of robe called a "vestment" (2 Kings 10:22).

 

Look a bit further. "Call now, if there be any that will answer thee; and to which of the saints wilt thou turn?" Job 5:1.

 

We can guess know how this verse applies. Someone is praying to the "saints." (Job was written 1500 years before Christ, and here we have this same group of Godless, Baal-worshippers; so when Job gets into trouble, one of his friends asks Job, "To which of the saints wilt thou turn?" This implies that ancient people did pray to dead "saints.")

 

"Behold, he putteth no trust in his saints; yea, the heavens are not clean in his sight" Job 15: 15.

 

Here we find that this doctrine of "calling on the saints" is corrected. This is a passage that every Catholic should get a hold of as soon as possible. God puts no trust in His saints. God wouldn't trust St. Jude or St. Christopher. If He had trusted Simon Peter (St. Peter?), He would have been disappointed because Simon Peter cursed and swore. If He had trusted Paul (St. Paul?), He would have been disappointed because Paul got out of the will of God by going to Jerusalem. If He had trusted Noah, He would have been disappointed because Noah got drunk. If He had trusted St. Matthew, St. Mark, or St. Luke, He would have been disappointed because they all forsook Him and fled. If He had put His trust in Joseph, He would have been disappointed because Joseph lied about the cup.

 

And if we think for a minute that God Almighty trusts "blessed John," "blessed Mary," "blessed Joseph," or "blessed John, the Baptist," we should know He doesn't bother! "Behold, he putteth no trust in his saints; yea, the heavens are not clean in his sight."

 

This Baal worship includes not only a male deity, but a female deity. This female deity is called the "queen of heaven" (Jeremiah 44). (In 1845 they found a temple built to Diana in Marseille, France, and they found the inscription in it: "Hephizi-Baal is the judge of the holy queen. The holy queen receives the cakes baked for the royal worship.")

 

In "The Glories of Mary" (published in 1931 by the Roman Catholic Rev. A. B. Koonz, CSSR, Bensinger Bros., 78 Park Place, New York), the author says on page 32, "All graces are dispensed by Mary. She is a mediatrix of peace between sinners and God. Sinners receive pardon by the intercession of Mary alone. At the command of Mary, all obey -- even God. [How can anyone who trusts Jesus Christ's work on the cross believe this stuff?] There is no salvation outside of Mary, who is the gate to heaven." (See page 169, page 160, page 83, page 81.) This book is "Nihil Obstat," with the imprimatur of a cardinal, that is, it contains "no objection-able material!" As far as a Christian is concerned, Mary was no one but an Old Testament Jewish woman who needed a Savior. Mary was a sinner (Luke 1:47), who needed a Savior (Luke 1:47), and needed a sacrifice (Luke 2:24), as a purification for her sins (Luke 2:22).

 

In Jeremiah 44:17,18,19,25, there is a goddess is called the "queen of heaven." The Romans call her "Venus." The Greeks call her "Diana." The Phoenicians call her "Astaroth." The Assyrians call her "Astarte." The Greeks call her "Minerva," "Juno," or "Herma," but the Bible calls her that "Harlot," "the Mother of abominations." We will see her in Revelation 17.

 

We have now gone briefly through the reasons why the tribe of Dan is omitted from the sealing that takes place in the Tribulation in Revelation 7.

 

Now, reading again over the list, we find all the tribes are present except Dan and Ephraim. Joseph is the substitution for Ephraim, and Levi is the substitution for Dan. Let us repeat, this is 144,000 of all the tribes of the children of Israel (Revelation 7:4).

 

Revelation 7: 9 - After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands;

 

The "I," of course, is John, speaking in the first person, and he is in the third heaven when he says this. Notice, the first group that he saw was the tribes of the children of Israel. The second group is of "all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues" - Gentiles. (This throne is in the third heaven, and so is the Lamb, as in Revelation 5 and 6.) We cannot help but connect these "clothed with white robes" with those mentioned in Revelation 6:11. We also identify these with Revelation 3:4 and Revelation 3:18. So these white robes are given, evidently, to martyrs. They represent human righteousness, as in Revelation 19:8, where it says that white linen is the "righteousness of saints." Therefore, the robes have to do with works after salvation, and not the righteousness of Jesus Christ Himself. In Revelation 7:9, then, God allows us to see a great multitude of people who have been killed, and they are under "the altar" in Revelation 6. But in chapter 7 they are pictured in the third heaven.

 

Revelation 7: 10 - 12 - And cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb. And all the angels stood round about the throne, and about the elders and the four beasts, and fell before the throne on their faces, and worshipped God, Saying, Amen: Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, and thanksgiving, and honour, and power, and might, be unto our God for ever and ever. Amen.

 

There is no doubt about the change in position of these martyrs from earth to heaven. The location is the same as we found it in Revelation 4:1-7- the third heaven. In Revelation 4:1-7 we have the elders, the four beasts, and the throne.

 

Revelation 7: 13,14 - And one of the elders answered, saying unto me, What are these which are arrayed in white robes? and whence came they? And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.

 

"Sir, thou knowest." In plain words, John answered "I don't know, but you know," This passage could be applied to a Christian in the Church Age, spiritually, but it cannot be applied to him doctrinally. The Christian's righteousness is the Lord Jesus Christ, and the Christian's "white robes" are his own righteousnesses that he earns after he is saved, and his salvation is not conditional on works. In Revelation 7:14, their robes were made "white in the blood of the Lamb." It isn't that they were saved by the blood of the Lamb, or that they were "washed in the blood of the Lamb." They have washed their robes, and made them (robes) "white in the blood of the Lamb."

 

Notice, "these are they which came out of great tribulation" - a special time. Paul says, "We must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God" (Acts 14:22), and "To you who are troubled, rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven" (2 Thessalonians 1:7). But, this (Revelation 7) is "great tribulation," and to make this tribulation refer to the trials and testings and tribulations of the Christian's life in the Church Age is a scriptural perversion. This (Revelation 7) is a definite period of time, spoken of in a dozen places, and it is never connected with the tribulations through which God's people go as Christians. It is always connected with a period of time in which Israel (144,000) is saved.

 

Matthew 24:21, "For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be."

 

Again, we cannot make this refer to the tribulations through which the Christian passes. The "this time" is the Second Coming of Christ.

 

Matthew 24:29, "Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken."

 

This is the heavenly phenomena which we read about at the end of Revelation 6. Again, the context is not the Church Age.

 

Matthew 24:30, "And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory."

 

The context of Matthew 24 is the context of Revelation 7. We have "a great multitude out of every nation, and tongue, and people," and we have the "tribes." These people are saved out of a period of time called "the great tribulation," which precedes the Second Advent of Jesus Christ, and recognition of this truth establishes the Pre-Millennial system of interpretation as the only correct Bible system.

 

"Have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the lamb." Our robes have not been washed and been made white in the blood of the Lamb; We believers have been washed in the blood of the Lamb (Revelation 1:5). "Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth" - (2 Timothy 2: 15). This thought brings out another great truth about Bible study; it is that the differences between correct Bible exegesis and incorrect Bible exegesis is respect and reverence for the English text, as it is found. The only way we can ever get it right is to believe what it says, as it says it, where we find it, exactly as it is said. The difference in the Christian method of learning and teaching the Bible, and the standard "systematic theologies" taught in today's seminaries, is that the men who teach the standard theologies do not believe what they are reading and teaching is the word of God. If He said in one place. "Unto him that loved us and washed us from our sins in his own blood. " and another place, "And have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb," then these are two different references. These are two different sets of words, in two different places, referring to two different sets of people, at two different times.

 

Revelation 7: 15 - Therefore are they before the throne of God, and serve him day and night in his temple: and he that sitteth on the throne shall dwell among them.

 

 

 

This "Blood Washed Multitude" introduces us to another class of the saved of the "End-time." They do not represent the Church, for the Church has already been taken out. They differ from the Elders, who represent the Church, in that they stand, and have palms in their hands, while the Elders have "crowns," and "sit on thrones," and have "harps," and "golden vials" in their hands. They are an "elect body" of Gentiles gathered out from all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues. The statement that they "came out of great tribulation" does not necessarily imply that it was "The Great Tribulation" that they came out of, for that covers only the "last half" of the Week, and they are seen by John in the middle of the "first half" of the Week. They are a vast multitude saved by the preaching of the "Gospel of the Kingdom." While the Holy Spirit went back with the Church to escort the "Bride to be" home, it does not follow that He remained there. For in Old Testament times, and during the earthly ministry of Jesus, He was active in the conversion of men, and so it will be after the Church is caught out. The Holy Spirit will convert those who are converted during the Tribulation period.

 

The claim has been made that this "Blood Washed Multitude" represent the Gentiles who shall pass safely through "The Great Tribulation," and who cry "SALVATION" because they have been saved from martyrdom and death during the Tribulation, and that they serve God day and night in the new "Millennial Temple" on the earth because there is no day or night or Temple in Heaven. While that is true of the Holy City, New Jerusalem (Revelation 21:22-25), it is not true of Heaven, for they are not the same. The New Jerusalem is the place (City) that Jesus went to prepare for His Bride, the Church (John 14:2), and John declares that he saw it coming down "out of" Heaven. Revelation 21:2. Therefore the New Jerusalem is not Heaven. That there is a "TEMPLE" in Heaven we are told in chapters 11:19, 15:5-8, and 16:1.

 

Revelation 7: 16 - They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat.

 

The statement "That they shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat, for the LAMB which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and GOD shall wipe away all tears from their eyes," is not Millennial but Heavenly in character. And further this "Blood Washed Multitude, being Gentiles, could not serve in an earthly Jewish Temple."

 

The cross-references for this verse are Isaiah 25:10 and Isaiah 49:10. We will find that in both of these references, the message is to Israel in the Millennium not to the Christian in eternity.

 

Revelation 7: 17 - For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.

 

This is the first mention of the fact that God is going "to wipe away" any tears from anybody's eyes; it is not mentioned again until Revelation 21:4. Notice that there are two times when tears are mentioned as "being wiped away" - both occur after the Church Age is over. (We may die and get to heaven, but the old song "No Tears in Heaven" is not true. There are tears in heaven in Revelation 7, and there are tears in heaven in Revelation 21.) Now, there are no tears in eternity. Eternity is just beginning in Revelation 21, and it hasn't started in Revelation 7. In Revelation 21:4, when God wipes away tears, the context is immediately following the judgment of the unsaved dead (Revelation 20:12-15). God does not wipe away all tears for the final time until after the Great White Throne Judgment.

 

In Revelation 7:17, we see that these tears are not wiped away until the end of the Tribulation. This means that at the end of the Church Age, the Body of Christ is going to be "caught out" and "caught up," and, while the Tribulation takes place down on this earth, the Body of Christ is going to be judged at the Judgment Seat of Christ in heaven. The tears are not "wiped away" until the end of the Tribulation (Revelation 7:17) and this occurs at a time when a company of post-Tribulation saints have been "caught up" to the throne. So, there are two times when tears are wiped away, and these two places occur:

 

  1. Following the Judgment Seat of Christ.
  2.  

  3. Following the Great White Throne Judgment.

 

This means that there is going to be weeping and wailing among the born-again Christians at the Judgment Seat of Christ and at the Great White Throne Judgment; there is going to be weeping and wailing of Tribulation and Millennium saints. When we get to heaven, our tears are not over, as a Christian, until the Judgment Seat of Christ is passed. (And there may be some "bawling" at the Great White Throne Judgment when we see unsaved loved ones going out forever into hell.) Now, it is true that in Revelation 20 we'll be like Christ and we'll have "the mind of Christ," but Christ wept over sinners, and Christ wept over Jerusalem.

 

Matthew 23:37-39, "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not! Behold, your house is left unto you desolate. For I say unto you, Ye shall not see me henceforth, till ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord."

 

There shall be weeping in heaven on two occasions. One time when we see what we could have done for Christ, and didn't do - this will take place at the Judgment Seat of Christ; secondly, when we see unsaved people to whom we could have witnessed, perishing and going to hell because we didn't witness to them. In plain words, God's people aren't through with tears until Revelation 21. There's going to be weeping at the Judgment Seat of Christ, when we see our loss of rewards, the crowns we could have won that we didn't win, the time we lost that we could have redeemed and the wasted opportunities. There is going to be crying again at the Great White Throne Judgment when we see unsaved loved ones, friends, relatives, and neighbors cast into the lake of fire, when some of us did not do our very best to win them to Jesus Christ. The moral of these two passages is very clear, practically. Do the very best we can to win people to Jesus Christ. When we have prayed for them all we can, witnessed to them all that we are able to, given them tracts as occasions are provided, given them the whole testimony and the clear counsel of God, and the plan of salvation, as clearly as we can give it, then don't worry about it; turn it over to God and forget it. But, until you have done these things, remember that there are "tears in heaven." The song "No Tears in Heaven" is just like the song "Wait a Little Longer, Please Jesus." They are both non-scriptural, non-Christian "stuff!"

 

There will be weeping at the Judgment Seat of Christ, and at the Great White Throne Judgment.

 

 

 

 

STUDY QUESTIONS

 

 

  1. Which of the "four corners" of the earth have you traveled? Can you share your sense of what this expression means? In common usage? In the use here as John expresses it?
  2.  

  3. What is the most spectacular sunrise you have ever seen? What made it "special?" Which "sun" rise are you now looking for? Why? Apply it scripturally if you can.
  4.  

  5. What are some things that have made you feel "sealed up" for something special? Do you think that God has a "special mission" just for you? What that might be?
  6.  

  7. For what purpose(s) do you think that God had the 144,000 sealed? Doctrinally? Spiritually?
  8.  

  9. Do you agree with God's reasons for not sealing the Tribe of Dan and the Tribe of Ephriam? Can you give scriptural reasons for these omissions?
  10.  

  11. What is "soiled" but when washed in "red" turns white?"
  12.  

  13. What do you think of the song of adoration found in verse 12? Why do you think it starts with an "AMEN" and ends with an "AMEN"?
  14.  

  15. For what reasons do you think you will be shedding tears in heaven? Can you imagine how it will feel when God Himself wipes away your tears?
  16.  

  17. What are the three most outstanding things you have learned in this chapter?

a. ___________________________.

b. ___________________________.

c. ___________________________.

 

HOME

GROUP PRAYER

 

Is there something our home group can pray with you about?