Revelation 19:1-21 Part 2

REVELATION 19:1-21 Part 2


1)    After these I heard as a great sound of a multitude in the heaven saying “halleluia the salvation and the glory and the power of our God,

2)    for His judgments are true and just; for He judged the great harlot that corrupted the earth in her fornication and avenged His servants’ blood at her hand.”

3)    Then again they declared “halleluia!  Her smoke ascends into the ages of ages.”

4)    Then the twenty-four elders and the four living creatures fell down and worshipped The God seated over the throne, saying “Amen!  Halleluia!”

5)    Then there came forth a sound from the throne saying, “all you His servants, the small and the great who are afeared, extol our God!”

6)    Then I heard as sound of a multitude and as sound of many waters and as sound of mighty thunders saying “halleluia!  Kurios the Almighty God reigns!

7)    Rejoicing and celebrating we will give Him the glory, for the wedding feast of the Lamb did come!  And His betrothed did ready herself!

8)    And it was given to her that she be arrayed in pure, bright linen; for the fine linen is the righteousness of the holy ones.”

9)    Then he says to me, “write: ‘blessed the ones called to the wedding feast of the Lamb’”; and says to me, “these true words are from God”.

10) And I fell before his feet to pay homage to him, and he says “see you not do that, for I am the fellow servant of you and your brothers who hold the testimony of Jesus; for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.”

11) Then I saw the heaven opened and, lo, a white horse; and seated upon it One called Faithful and True, and He judges and wages war in righteousness,

12) His eyes as flaming fire, many diadems on His head, having a written name that is known by no one but Him.

13) He was clothed about – the raiment blood-spattered, and His Name called The Word of God,

14) the armies in the heaven – clothed in pure white linen - following Him on white horses,

15) a sharp sword proceeding from His mouth, that with it He would smite the nations, and He will rule them with a rod of iron.  And He treads the winepress of the wine of the wrath – the vengeance of Almighty God.

16) And He has a name written on His raiment and on His thigh: King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

17) Then I saw one messenger standing in the sun; and it cried out – a great sound – saying to all the birds flying in mid-heaven: “Come!  Gather to the great feast of God

18) that you may eat the flesh of rulers, the flesh of commanders, the flesh of the strong, the flesh of horses and of those sitting upon them, the flesh of all – both free and slave, small and great.

19) Then I saw the beast and the kings of the earth and their armies gathered to wage war with the One sitting upon the horse and His army;

20) and the beast was seized (and with it the false prophet that did the signs before it by which he deceived those who received the mark of the beast and paid homage to its image); both were cast alive into the lake of fire, being burned in brimstone;

21) and the remaining ones were killed with the sword of the One sitting upon the horse – that which proceeded from His mouth; and all the birds were gorged from their flesh.


John’s Revelation of Jesus Christ is a letter to the Churches.  And it didn’t have any chapters.  What we have here in (what we know as) chapter nineteen is a continuation of what is written in chapter eighteen – without a break in the script of the letter! 

And as the letter continues, Johns writes, “After these…” (verse one).  “After these” refers to what has just been previously shown to John.  And all that he is shown, and all that he is caused to hear, is prophetic… in continuation of all of the former prophecy.  The continuity is unmistakable.  He was told at the beginning that there had to be one last prophecy before the end of the age (which was imminent), and that he was the one to prophesy this one last time.  All that he sees and hears he is to write to the Churches that they be assured and strengthened and comforted in all that was about to be, for the Day of YAHVEH was at hand!  Mighty things of God were about to take place; and those in the Churches scattered in the nations all over the earth were to hold fast the testimony of Jesus and keep His Commandments.

This entire prophetic Word constitutes the testimony of Jesus (that’s how chapter one verse one begins); and the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy (verse ten of our text).  And all prophecy concludes here with the apostle John as he is shown all that has been prophesied heretofore, and all that is about to take place here in the “last days” – the “end of the age” – the ”Day of YAHVEH”.

John is shown all of these things as God has purposed them and as He perceives them.  They are not necessarily in chronological order; but, as God reveals them, John sees them as the great covenantal matters that have been revealed throughout God’s Word.  Prophecy doesn’t occur in sequence; it takes place by way of the great matters of God’s covenant.

In chapter eighteen John wrote what he was shown concerning the lawsuit against the harlot Israel and its capitol city Jerusalem (we read the prophecy of this lawsuit in Ezekiel chapter twenty seven); for Israel had been betrothed to YAHVEH at Sinai.  But all through the betrothal, Israel had played the whore of the nations, deceiving them by her enchantments… causing them all to drink of the cup of the wine of her fornications.

During the betrothal Israel was to prepare for the wedding festivities with joy and anticipation.  But, as Jesus said in His kingdom parable (Matthew twenty-two), there had been no preparations at all!  Instead, she hated Him when He arrived; for she had been a harlot during the entire betrothal!

And secondly (as the last verse of chapter eighteen says), “…the blood of the prophets was found in her, and that of every one of the holy ones ever slain upon the land.”

Chapter eighteen is the prophetic Word regarding the lawsuit – a lawsuit with all witnesses present – it is the prophecy of her execution… all to take place shortly.  And there were these two charges against her in the former chapter: 1) rather than being the light of the world – the city on the hill – shining the light of the glory of God upon all the peoples of the world, she was the harlot of the world – enchanting the kings and merchants of the nations with her great beauty and wealth; and 2) she persecuted and killed the prophets and shed the blood of God’s holy ones.

And then, in a review of the history of God’s covenantal promise of a “seed”, we looked once again at Jesus’ condemnation of the priests and scribes and pharisees just before His crucifixion.

Here it is from Matthew chapter twenty-three:


27) Woe to you scribes and pharisees hypocrites, you repair the tombs of the prophets and adorn the monuments of the righteous (the holy ones),

28) and you say, ‘If we had been in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partakers of them in the blood of the prophets.”

29) So you are witnesses to yourselves that you are sons of those who killed the prophets;

30) and you, you fill up the measure of your fathers.

31) Serpents, brood of vipers, how shall you escape from the judgment of Gehenna?

32) Because of this, Lo, I send to you prophets and sages and scribes; of them you will kill and crucify, and of them you will scourge in your synagogues, and you will persecute them from city into city,

33) In order that all righteous blood shall come upon you which has been spilled upon the land from the blood of the righteous Abel until the blood of Zacharias Son of Barachias, who you murdered between the temple and altar!

34) Amen I say to you, these things shall come upon this generation.

35) Jerusalem, Jerusalem, she who kills the prophets and stones the ones who were being sent to her, how many times I wished to gather together your children (even as a bird gathers her brood under her wings) and you would not.

36) Lo, your house is left to you a desolation.


Not only does our Lord identify Jerusalem as the city under judgment (as does the entirety of the Revelation), but He also condemns the scribes and pharisees as self-admitted sons of their serpent fathers who killed the holy ones of old!

The seed of the serpent is always at enmity with the seed of the woman (Genesis chapter three).  And these hypocrite leaders of Israel were the seed – the progeny – of the serpent.  It’s one of the great covenantal matters revealed from the beginning of the Scripture all the way to the end; and therefore it is of primary import throughout John’s Revelation.

Our Lord’s promise of the desolation of Jerusalem and the land of Israel (in this generation) comes to its fullness in what is recorded for us in chapter eighteen.  It is the tabernacle of God in the heaven as a court of law with all the witnesses. 

Our Lord, at the beginning of chapter eighteen, declares Jerusalem ready for judgment; and the charges are brought.  And (once again) they are: her harlotry with the nations all during her betrothal to YAHVEH, and her shedding of the blood of the righteous all through her history.

The judgment that is rendered by God upon the “greater Babylon” – Israel, is in the last five verses of chapter eighteen.  Listen one last time:


“’Be gladdened over her heaven and holy ones and apostles and prophets! for from your lawsuit God did pass judgment on her.’

Then the one mighty messenger raised a stone as a great millstone and cast it into the sea, saying “so with violence Babylon the great city shall be cast and shall never again be found.

The sound of harpers and musicians and pipers and trumpeters shall never be heard in you again; and no craftsman of any craft shall ever be found in you again; and the sound of a millstone shall never be heard in you again;

and the light of a candle shall never shine in you again; and the voice of the bridegroom and the bride shall never be heard in you again; for your merchants were the princes of the earth, and by your enchantment all the nations of the earth were seduced;

and the blood of the prophets was found in her, and that of every one of the holy ones ever slain upon the land.”


What John hears now in chapter nineteen is the entire tabernacle of God erupting in joyous praise at the judgment that has just been rendered (recorded in chapter eighteen).  And what we want to get at this morning before communion is the anticipation of God’s imminent judgment upon Israel and the city of Jerusalem, and the great joy among all the creatures in the heaven that it was now about to take place!

YAHVEH is just in His judgment, and He is true to His Word; for all His prophets have prophesied the very Day of YAHVEH in which this judgment would come to pass!

Since the beginning, you see, there had been this great expectation among all the creatures in the heaven because God had spoken it!  They didn’t know when it would be, but they knew it would be!  And when God pronounced the judgment (chapter eighteen) they all broke out in thunderous halleluias (chapter nineteen)!

And let’s see that it wasn’t just the creatures in the heaven that were eagerly awaiting the Day of YAHVEH, but as we heard in chapter six (as the Lamb opened the seals of the scroll), the blood of the righteous cried out to God for His vengeance!  As Jesus said, the blood of holy ones all through history had been shed by these “sons of vipers”.

Listen once again to what John was shown then (chapter six):


9)    And when He did open the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the lives of those who had been slaughtered because of the Word of God and because of the testimony that they were holding.

10) And in a great sound they did cry out, saying “until when, holy and worthy Master, are You not judging and avenging our blood from those dwelling on the land?


And a white priestly garment was given to each one, and it was spoken to them that they should rest themselves yet a little time until also their fellow-servants and brothers who are about to be killed even as they, should be fulfilled.

So, you see, there was eager anticipation for (what Luke called) the Days of Vengeance in which YAHVEH would bring desolation to the harlot and the land.  There was yet more blood of the righteous to be shed; and the sin of Israel was not yet piled up into the heaven.  But as we heard in chapter one, it was all to take place quickly!

But there was excitement and longing and yearning for that day.  It had been prophesied, you see!  And John hears that judgment from above the throne there in chapter eighteen.  And now in chapter nineteen there is the sound of a tumult throughout the extent of the cosmos!  John hears it all as the entire glory cloud/tabernacle of God bursts out in joyous praise; for judgment had been rendered and the time had arrived!

The mighty roar of ten thousands times ten thousands of the messengers of the glory cloud; the twenty four elders under and around the mercy seat; the four magnificent creatures – the cherubim – all breaking out in joy and praise at the Revelation of the arrival of the “day”.

The “Seed” of the woman – God’s Messiah/King - had arisen out of death with all of the elect of the twelve tribes of Jacob. He had sought out every last one of them… all of which had been marked and sealed in baptism and removed from the land before the coming of the burnished sword of Almighty God against the condemned harlot!

The flaming sword that YAHVEH had stationed before the way to the tree of life (Genesis chapter three) would now be the instrument of execution; for Jerusalem and the land had sought to determine her own way.  She had wished to have “life” on her own terms.

This is another of those exalted covenantal matters appearing throughout the text of Scripture, you see; and throughout the Revelation John is shown that self-same Sword proceeding from the mouth of the glorified Jesus Christ.

It was a fear-producing sight for John (as we heard from chapter one), for not only is the sword of YAHVEH the implement of death and desolation for Jerusalem and the land; but it is the instrument of life for the Gentile nations, peoples, tribes and tongues.

Wherever it is wielded by the Savior of the world, there is death to the old humanity in Adam, and men and women and children are rebirthed into the new humanity of Jesus Christ – the second Adam.

And once again all the creatures in God’s heavenly tabernacle are exhilarated – jubilant – as these things are revealed; for they have expected all of this!

As the imminent judgment of Jerusalem and the land is uttered from above the throne, they all break out in “halleluias” regarding the truth and justice of God.  And they do so again at the reign and rule of The Christ… for the judgment of the harlot marks the reign of the King of Kings over the nations.   The true “paradise” will now come to be… IN HIM.

The very first location in Scripture (and one of only a few) in which the Hebrew word “halleluia” appears is in Psalm 104.  The Psalm is an absolute delight, in that it is anticipatory of the perfect paradise-creation of God as sinners are consumed out of the earth.

I’ll wait until another time to read the entire Psalm for you; but listen to just a few verses at the end:


33) I will sing unto YAHVEH as long as I live: I will sing praise to my God while I have my being.

34) My meditation of him shall be sweet: I will be glad in YAHVEH.

35) Let the sinners be consumed out of the earth, and let the wicked be no more. Bless YAHVEH, O my soul.  HALLELUIA!


The “hallel” is “praise”; the “u” sound is the imperative; and the “Yah” sound is the Name of God: YAHVEH.  “Hallel-u-ia”

Let it be observed here without doubt that what John sees and hears here at the beginning of chapter nineteen is exactly what the Psalmist prophesies in Psalm 104.  When in His justice and truth God consumes the wicked, there is the onset of a paradise creation that reflects the glory of Almighty God in His tabernacle.

Here in our text the “halleluias” break out among the entirety of the glory cloud of God; for He, in all His truth and justice, has pronounced the imminent judgment of the wicked harlot – just as in Psalm 104.

And there is then another thunderous roar of “halleluia” for Kurios – Almighty God the Son; for His is the work of the “new heavens and the new earth in which dwells righteousness”.  In Him is the new temple in the new Jerusalem by which all the creation will once again reflect the glory of His Father.  That’s the personally stated purpose of Jesus… to glorify His Father.

As the Psalmist anticipated all of this, so the creatures in God’s tabernacle anticipated it.  As the Psalmist uttered a loud “Halleluia”, so the whole glory cloud of God erupted in mighty “Halleluias”.  They expected it, and now it has come to be!

Now, the word “hope” (the common English translation of the Greek word “elpis”) leaves everything open to some uncertainty.  But the real translation of the word is the English word “expectation”, or “anticipation”.  You see, one can “hope” that some future event comes to pass; and therein is the uncertainty that it will.  But to expect it – or to anticipate it – tends to remove that uncertainty.  One can expect only that which he knows to be true!  God has said it.  And if He has said it, then you can look forward to it!  You can expect it!  And there is rejoicing when it comes to be!

And that’s exactly the case here at the beginning of chapter nineteen.  The host of the heavenly tabernacle knew (from the prophetic Word) that there was a day of judgment coming… they expected it; and they were elated when it was pronounced.  And they also knew that that end-of-the-age day of YAHVEH would inaugurate the reign and rule of Jesus Christ over all the nations – as promised to Abraham.  And they knew that In Him was a new paradise heaven-and-earth to the glory of the Father!   They expected it because it was prophesied; and when it was announced, the glory cloud was filled with halleluias!


Now… in that light, and as we come to the sign and seal of the covenant that our Lord introduced on the night in which he was delivered up, there are a few things that I would like for you to consider.

First, as we think about all the things we’ve learned so far from The Revelation, it ought to be with great joy to know that our Lord has “joined together” many people from all nations, tongues and tribes in His new humanity.

By His grace and mercy Gentiles everywhere have been received … all promised afore to Abraham.  And we’re no longer members of that cursed and fallen humanity from which we’ve been so freely rebirthed.  We are “seed” that God has kept for Himself – seed of the woman promised in the original paradise, brothers with a new heritage in the Second Adam.


Secondly, our Lord’s instruction to His apostles was that, as the Gospel of Christ’s salvation was preached to the nations, they were to baptize them (and that included their children).  Place the “mark of Christ” on them.  It is the mark of God on our bodies, and the mark of the outpouring of His Spirit on the nations.  Baptize them. And, then, teach them to obey.  He is King of the nations; they are to receive His mark as did our Lord’s lost sheep of the tribes of Jacob.  And they are to be taught to obey their King.  By the “mark”; and by their fearful obedience, they are identified.


Thirdly, there is a “unity” in this new humanity.  Jesus said that all who belong to Him are “in Him”, and He in them, and we in God (John chapter fifteen).  It is a brotherhood in Christ.  We are made His brothers; and we are “His body”.  We are no longer the “body” of Adam.  We no longer belong to the race of Adam….  We are a new body… the body of Christ the Savior of the world!  And all who bear His “mark” have access to His table, where we “remember” Him and receive “nourishment” in His body and anticipate His further work!

Although all of us who are baptized are given assurance of the truth and validity of His covenant promises (which includes all of our children), the letter to the Church at Corinth chastises the Church for its sacramental practices.  Members who have more don’t separate themselves from those who have less; members of one race (Jewish members, for example) don’t separate themselves from others races (Gentiles, for example); and vice-versa!  There are no races in the body of Christ!  As we’ve said before, there are only two races… the one whose heritage is Christ and the other one whose heritage is Adam!

And there’s to be no “boasting” in that (Paul says).  Can a newborn boast that he had something to do with his birth?  Can a newborn somehow earn the right to choose which family he’s to be born into?  How is it that you boast in your heritage?  If you boast, says Paul, boast in the will and purpose of our sovereign God – not in your heritage!

And you don’t come to His table in a party spirit either… gorging yourselves on food and wine.  Paul said that if you’re hungry, eat at home!  This isn’t a party!  It’s a solemn event!  This is with reference to His body… not to fill your own!

And also, even if you’re a baptized member of His covenant, you’re expected to examine yourselves (and your children).  If you’re out of accord with your brother; or if you’re in some kind of rebellion against our Lord’s Commandments, then you need to get it straight before you come!  And that requires self-examination, confession and repentance.  Otherwise you may be eating and drinking judgment unto yourself.  In that, this is indeed a solemn occasion.

But, further, this is a joyous event to be celebrated.  There is not only to be self-examination and confession and repentance, and restrained eating and drinking, but there is also to be thankfulness, gladness and comfort in our having been included.

In the sacrament itself, which is the sign and seal of the  covenant, we must be elated that we were in Him in His birth; we were in Him in His humiliation, death and burial; we were in Him in His resurrection.  And now we are in Him at His Seat over the throne-room in the heaven where we actually participate in judging the world!

Because of what HE did – not what we did – we are washed in His blood, and we are nourished in His body.  And it is all given to us freely.  We are not wage-earners… we are gift-recipients, you see.

And lastly I just have a few things to say about our expectations.  And before the table is a great time and place.

Our Lord Jesus Christ was delivered up to crucifixion by the seed of the serpent.  The third day He arose out of death.  Forty days after His crucifixion He came to The Father in the glory cloud in the heaven, having completed His covenantal work on earth; and He was given all authority in the heavens and the earth and awarded all the nations for His faithfulness to the Father’s will and purpose.  On the fiftieth day He poured out His Spirit at Pentecost; and thousands went back home to the nations and tribes and tongues of the earth as newborn babes in Christ.  The Church was born in the nations; the Church, the visible representative of the Kingdom of Jesus Christ.

From the heaven His work proceeds.  And just as before – He will not fail.  He has all authority over the host of heaven; He has all authority over the creation and all of its creatures; and He has all authority over the creatures in the abyss.  They all obey.

Now, expectation is at the core of the faith, isn’t it?  In the seven messages to the Churches in chapters two and three of The Revelation, there was severe chastening of those who weren’t anticipating what was promised in the prophetic Word and what was promised in the preaching and letters of Christ’s apostles!  It was the imminent Parousia of Jesus Christ the King!  In some, there was no expectation, and their false teaching was infecting the Churches!  And unless the Churches sanctioned these false teachers, there would be judgment on the Churches at His Parousia!  That’s how important it is to anticipate that which God has said in His prophetic Word!  That’s how important it is to expect the “fullness” of the work of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords!

So, when we celebrate at the table, there should be not only a solemn remembrance of Him, with confession and repentance; and there should be not only joy and thanksgiving as we receive the sign and seal of the covenant. 

But there should also be an enlightened expectancy – a wondrous anticipation – of His further work.  He’s not finished!  What you see isn’t all there is.  There’s so much more to come!

This creation isn’t to be destroyed; it is to be saved!  Lo!  The Lamb of God Who takes away the sin of the world!  He is the Overcomer.  He overcomes Satan; He overcomes sin; He overcomes death; He overcomes the curse on humanity and the creation.  And God’s creation will once again reflect the glory of God in His tabernacle.

The first paradise was cursed and made a wilderness.  The second heaven-and-earth paradise – Israel, was cursed and made a wilderness.  But the new heavens and the new earth is a true paradise In Him; for He has overcome the curse.  He is this creation’s Ruler and King; and all kings and nations and tribes and tongues will bow before Him and acknowledge Him.  And as was spoken to Daniel, His Kingdom will never be destroyed (as the four kingdoms before Him were).

Communion is the sign and the seal of the Covenant.  And the salvation of the world is at the very essence of the Covenant!  The table is the place for confidence and expectation!  Since He has already faithfully performed the will and purpose of The Father, we are to be confident that He is able to complete the further work that is promised!

The salvation of the world was covenantally promised to Abraham and revealed through the prophets and apostles – the capstone of which is right here in the Revelation of Jesus Christ; and that’s what we are to look forward to with ardent – FERVENT anticipation.