Archives For Hell

I. INTRODUCTION

A. Review of Past Lessons

B. Text of Rev 20:11-15

11Then I saw a great white throne with someone sitting on it. The earth and sky fled from his presence. No place was found for the earth and sky. 12Then I saw the dead—the great and the small—they were standing before the throne. The books were opened, then another book was opened which is the Book of Life. The dead were judged from what had been written in the books according to their deeds. 13The sea gave up the dead that were in it. Death and Hades also gave up the dead that were in them. Every person was judged according to his deeds. 14Then Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire—this is the second death—which is the lake of fire. 15If someone’s name is not found written in the Book of Life, he is thrown into the lake of fire. (Rev 20:11-15) 1

The Great White Throne Judgment in Rev 20.11 to 20.15

Photo Credit: “The Last Judgment” (Stefan Lochner, 1400-1451)

C. General Remarks about Rev 20:11-15

“The account in these few verses, in spite of their brevity, is one of the most impressive descriptions of the Last Judgment ever written.” Metzger, Breaking the Code, 97

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II. THE GREAT WHITE THRONE (20:11)

Καὶ εἶδον θρόνον μέγαν λευκὸν καὶ τὸν καθήμενον ἐπʼ αὐτόν, οὗ ἀπὸ °τοῦ προσώπου ἔφυγεν ἡ γῆ καὶ ὁ οὐρανὸς καὶ τόπος οὐχ εὑρέθη αὐτοῖς.

Then I saw a great white throne with someone sitting on it. The earth and sky fled from his presence. No place was found for the earth and sky. (Rev 20:11) 2

A. Who Sits on the Throne

The one sitting on the throne is the Father and probably also Jesus. In the New Testament the Father is described as providing the last judgment (Matt 6:4; 10:32-33; 18:35; Mark 8:38; Rom 14:10; also see Dan 7:9, 10, 22), but Jesus has been given authority to judge (Matt 7:22-23; 25:31-46; John 5:22, 30; 2 Cor 5:10). Continue Reading…

Notes:

  1. Unless otherwise noted, all translations are my own based on the NA28 Greek text
  2. Unless otherwise noted, all translations are my own based on the NA28 Greek text

I. INTRODUCTION

A. Past Lessons

B. Text of Rev 19:11-21

“11Then I looked and I saw heaven being opened. And behold, a white horse and the one riding it was titled, ‘Faithful and True.’ In righteousness he was judging and waging war. 12His eyes were like flames of fire, and many crowns were on his head. He had a name written which no one could understand except himself. 13He was wearing clothing dipped in blood, and the name he is called is, ‘The Word of God. 14The armies in heaven were dressed in fine linen that was white and clean. They followed the rider on the white horse. 15He had a sharp sword coming out of his mouth so that he could use it to strike the nations. He will rule them with an iron rod, he will walk on the wine of the winepress of the God Almighty’s angry wrath. 16He had a name written on his clothing and on his thigh: ‘King of kings and Lord of lords.’ 17Then I looked and I saw an angel standing in the sun and he cried out in a loud voice saying to all the birds flying in the mid-heaven, ‘Come! Gather for the great feast of God. 18Gather so we can eat the flesh of the kings, captains, powerful, horses, those who live with them, both free and slaves, small and great.’ 19Then I saw the beast and the kings of the earth gathered to war against the one who sits on the horse and against his army. 20The beast was seized along with his false prophet who had done signs on behalf of the beast. He led those astray who had the mark of the beast and who worshipped his statue. The two of them were thrown into the lake of fire of burning sulfur. 21The rest were killed by the sword that came out from the mouth from the one riding the horse. Every bird was full on their flesh.” (Rev 19:11-21) 1

Jesus Christ Returns (Rev 19:11-21)

Photo Credit: Waiting for the Word

C. General Remarks

“The Word of God marks plain that God so loved the world that He gave His Son, and that all who avail themselves of the grace of God are immeasurably blessed in time and eternity. On the other hand, the same Word of God states plainly that those who spurn God’s mercy must experience His judgment without mercy.” (Walvoord, Revelation, 294)

“There is nothing more dear to God’s people and more clearly stated in the Bible than the fact that Jesus Christ is coming again.” (Hitchcock, The End, 384).

“It is as though the wholeness of God is a sharp scalpel in the hand of a skilled and loving surgeon. As the surgeon seeks to cut through our flesh to the cancerous growth that is destroying us, we could easily perceive the surgeon as a spiteful, sadistic, ogre who is seeking to inflict pain and suffering upon us when, in reality, the surgeon, the scalpel, and the suffering they cause are all directed toward our healing and wholeness.” Mulholland, “Revelation” in Cornerstone Biblical Commentary, 574.

“This passage contains one of the most graphic pictures of the second coming of Christ to be found anywhere in Scripture.” (Walvoord, Revelation, 287)

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II. THE RIDER ON THE WHITE HORSE (Rev 19:11-16)

1A. Passages Predicting Christ’s Return

“Who is this who comes from Edom, from the city of Bozrah, with his clothing stained red? Who is this in royal robes, marching in his great strength? “It is I, the LORD, announcing your salvation! It is I, the LORD, who has the power to save!” Why are your clothes so red, as if you have been treading out grapes? “I have been treading the winepress alone; no one was there to help me. In my anger I have trampled my enemies as if they were grapes. In my fury I have trampled my foes. Their blood has stained my clothes.” (Isaiah 63:1–3, NLT)

“The LORD will appear above his people; his arrows will fly like lightning! The Sovereign LORD will sound the ram’s horn and attack like a whirlwind from the southern desert.” (Zechariah 9:14, NLT)

“Then the LORD will go out to fight against those nations, as he has fought in times past. On that day his feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, east of Jerusalem. And the Mount of Olives will split apart, making a wide valley running from east to west. Half the mountain will move toward the north and half toward the south.” (Zechariah 14:3–4, NLT)

“For as the lightning flashes in the east and shines to the west, so it will be when the Son of Man comes. Just as the gathering of vultures shows there is a carcass nearby, so these signs indicate that the end is near. “Immediately after the anguish of those days, the sun will be darkened, the moon will give no light, the stars will fall from the sky, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken. And then at last, the sign that the Son of Man is coming will appear in the heavens, and there will be deep mourning among all the peoples of the earth. And they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And he will send out his angels with the mighty blast of a trumpet, and they will gather his chosen ones from all over the world—from the farthest ends of the earth and heaven.” (Matthew 24:27–31, NLT)

“Jesus replied, ‘You have said it. And in the future you will see the Son of Man seated in the place of power at God’s right hand and coming on the clouds of heaven.’” (Matthew 26:64, NLT)

There were many people thinking about and writing about the coming of the Messiah during Jesus’ time and before his time. One of the views from the Dead Sea Scrolls seems to indicate that there would be two Messiahs: a royal Messiah and a priestly Messiah (Wright, Revelation for Everyone, 172). Meanwhile, other writings around Jesus’ time indicate that they were expecting a royal and wise king like Solomon, others suggest the king would be a military leader.

I am often asked—especially in my new believers class that I teach at church—why do the Jesus reject Jesus Christ as the Messiah. Well, it is because the passages I’ve listed above seem to indicate a Messiah that would be a military leader.

While Jesus did come to fight a battle, it was not the battle that many thought he was going to fight. He came to conquer death.

A. Faithful and True (v. 11)

Καὶ εἶδον τὸν οὐρανὸν ἠνεῳγμένον, καὶ ἰδοὺ ἵππος λευκὸς καὶ ὁ καθήμενος ἐπʼ αὐτὸν [καλούμενος] πιστὸς καὶ ἀληθινός, καὶ ἐν δικαιοσύνῃ κρίνει καὶ πολεμεῖ.

“Then I looked and I saw heaven being opened. And behold, a white horse and the one riding it was titled, ‘Faithful and True.’ In righteousness he was judging and waging war.” (Rev 19:11) 2

1. Similar to the First Seal Continue Reading…

Notes:

  1. Unless otherwise noted, all translations are my own based on the NA28 Greek text
  2. Unless otherwise noted, all translations are my own based on the NA28 Greek text

This is my final post in the summary doctrine series. Today we look at what it means for people to respond to the Gospel and what happens to those who do or don’t accept the Gospel message. Like my other posts, I’m using the Evangelical Free Church of America’s statement of faith as a guide.

A Summary of the Doctrine of the Gospel and Hell

Gustave Dore’s “New Jerusalem”

Response and Eternal Destiny. Article #10. We believe that God commands everyone everywhere to believe the gospel by turning to Him in repentance and receiving the Lord Jesus Christ. We believe that God will raise the dead bodily and judge the world, assigning the unbeliever to condemnation and eternal conscious punishment and the believer to eternal blessedness and joy with the Lord in the new heaven and the new earth, to the praise of His glorious grace. Amen.

I. BASICS OF THE GOSPEL MESSAGE

A. The Gospel Message Continue Reading…

I. INTRODUCTION

A. Past Lessons

B. Text of Rev 14:6-13

“6Then I looked and I saw another angel flying in the sky. He was holding the eternal good news in order to share the Gospel with those who live on the earth which are from every ethnicity, nation, language, and people. 7He spoke in a loud voice, ‘Fear God and give him glory because the time of his judgment has arrived, so worship the one who made heaven, earth, sea, and fountain waters.’ 8Then a second angel followed saying, ‘Fallen, fallen is the great Babylon which led the nations to drink of her wine, wrath, and adultery.’ 9Then a third angel followed saying in a loud voice, ‘If someone worships the beast and his statue and takes the mark on his forehead or his hand 10he will drink from the wine of God’s anger which has been mixed in the unmixed cup of his wrath. He will be tormented in fire and sulfur before the holy angels and before the Lamb. 11The smoke of his torment will rise forever and ever. That torment will never cease day or night for the ones who worship the beast and his statue, as well as anyone who receives the mark of his name. 12Under these circumstances the steadfastness of the saints is clear. They are the ones who keep the commandment of God and faith in Jesus.’ 13Then I heard a noise from heaven saying, ‘Write this down. “Blessed are the dead in the Lord who die from now on.’” ‘Yes,’ says the Spirit, ‘so they will rest from their toil, for their work follows them.’” (Rev 14:13) 1

Three Angels Fly Through the Air in Rev (Rev 14:6-13)

Photo Credit: Phillip Medhurst Collection

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II. THE FIRST ANGEL (14:6-7)

A. The Eternal Good News (v. 6)

Καὶ εἶδον ἄλλον ἄγγελον πετόμενον ἐν μεσουρανήματι, ἔχοντα εὐαγγέλιον αἰώνιον εὐαγγελίσαι ἐπὶ τοὺς καθημένους ἐπὶ τῆς γῆς καὶ ἐπὶ πᾶν ἔθνος καὶ φυλὴν καὶ γλῶσσαν καὶ λαόν,

“Then I looked and I saw another angel flying in the sky. He was holding the eternal good news in order to share the Gospel with those who live on the earth which are from every ethnicity, nation, language, and people.” (Rev 14:6)

1. Another Angel

In this instance, the longer reading is harder. The word was probably intentionally omitted in order to resolve the tension: Less likely, it might have been accidentally omitted since its spelling is similar to “angel” (ἄγγελος, angelos). If this is “another” angel, it is difficult to know who the first angel might have been since the last angel mentioned in the book of Revelation was in Rev 11:15. Continue Reading…

Notes:

  1. Unless otherwise noted, all translations are my own based on the Nestle-Aland 28 Greek text

I. INTRODUCTION

A. Review of Past Blog Posts

B. Text of Rev 9:1-12

“1The fifth angel blew his trumpet and I saw a star which had fallen from heaven to the earth. He was given the key to the shaft of the abyss. 2He opened the shaft to the Abyss and smoke ascended from the abyss like the smoke of a great furnace. Then the sun and wair were darkened from the smoke of the shaft. 3Locusts come out of the smoke into the earth. They were given power like scorpions of the earth. 4The locusts were told not to injure the grass of the earth, any green grass, or any tree, except the people who do not have the seal of God on their foreheads. 5The locusts were not allowed to kill them, but only to torture them for five months. Their torment was like the torture of a scorpion whenever it strikes a person. 6During that time people will want to die but they will not. They will want to die but death will escape them. 7The form of the locusts were like horses prepared for battle, and their heads had crowns like gold, and their faces were like human faces. 8They had hair like women’s hair and teeth like a lion. 9Their chests were like iron breastplates, and the noise of their wings was like the noise of many horse war chariots advancing toward battle. 10They had tails and stingers like scorpions. Their power was in their tails to injure people for the duration of five months. 11They had over them the king angel of the abyss. His name in Hebrew is Abaddon and in Greek is Apollyon. The first woe has come. Look! Two more woes are coming after this. (Rev 9:1-12) 1

The Fifth Trumpet Releases the First Terror in Rev 9.1 to 9.12

Photo Credit: Phillip Medhurst

C. General Remarks

The fifth trumpet is unique because John uses much more space to explain this trumpet. For the first four trumpets only seven verses are used while John uses twelve verses to describe the fifth trumpet.

“The stuff of horror movies, or nightmares, or both. We can only assume, when John wrote down this vision of the locusts, that he was intending to produce a similar effect. He lavishes more details description on these super-locusts than on any other creature in this vivid book” (Wright, Revelation for Everyone, 85).

II. THE FIFTH ANGEL AND AN OPEN BOTTOMLESS PIT (Rev 9:1-2)

A. A Fallen Star Opens the Bottomless Pit (v. 1)

“The fifth angel blew his trumpet and I saw a star which had fallen from heaven to the earth. He was given the key to the shaft of the abyss.” (Rev 9:1)

1. A Fallen Star Continue Reading…

Notes:

  1. Unless otherwise noted, all translations are my own.