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YOU ARE BORN TO SHINE

2 Corithians Chapter 4 verse 6

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Friday, September 07 2012

Introduction:

We considered the preservation and rapture of the 144,000 Jewish Believers just before the final wrath of God in our last study. The qualities of these Believers are worthy of emulation for us, namely non-defilement, following of the Master, and no guile (willful deceit of the heart). Finally, we saw God, who would not wish that any should perish, allow angels to preach before executing judgement on the earth. As we were taught last week: "the study should make us to appreciate our salvation even more; that we were fruits of the harvest of souls borne out of God's love and not that of His wrath". Indeed, it should even make us to do all that is required of us to hold on our faith with Godly fear and reverence. Today we will look a sort of preface to the final expression of God wrath and lessons for present day believers.

Another sign (vs 1)

And I saw another sign in heaven, great and marvelous, seven angels having the seven last plagues; for in them is filled up the wrath of God.

John had yet another sign which was the third sign in this book (Recall the first two in Revelation 12: 1 and 3). Seven angels were introduced having the last plagues as a final expression of God's wrath.

What John saw (vs 2-8)

2a And I saw as it were a sea of glass mingled with fire:

John was attempting to describe what he saw. Note the word "as it were", so his description will be more figurative. We can compare with Rev. 8 where John saw also seven angels while one of them came in with "the prayers of all the saints" like incense at the altar in heaven, filled the censer with fire from the altar and poured the fire on the earth in judgment (8:3-5). Here, however, as we see in the following verses, the saints are present themselves. Can we conclude that prayers of the saints trigger judgment?

The saints and what they were doing

2b and them that had gotten the victory over the beast, and over his image, and over his mark, and over the number of his name, stand on the sea of glass, having the harps of God.And they sing the song of Moses the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying, Great and marvelous are thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are thy ways, thou King of saints.Who shall not fear thee, O Lord, and glorify thy name? for thou only art holy: for all nations shall come and worship before thee; for thy judgments are made manifest.

There are divergent views on the composition of this group. While some believe that they are the 144,000 in the preceding chapter (see for instance IVP New Testament Commentaries), others believe they are Tribulation Martyrs - group in Rev. 7:9-17 (E.g. Bible Knowledge Commentaries). It will suffice to say that these people are overcomers and it is interesting to note that they had harps of God with which they would rejoice and praise God.

It is also very important to highlight the importance of music before God. God enjoys music and infact He dwells in the praises of His people (Ps. 22:3). He described David as a man after His own heart (Acts 13:22). David was a skillful musician and indeed that skill brought him to the palace:

I Sam 16:16: Let our lord command his servants here to search for someone who can play the harp. He will play when the evil spirit from God comes upon you, and you will feel better.

I Sam 18: 10: The next day an evil spirit from God came forcefully upon Saul. He was prophesying in his house, while David was playing the harp, as he usually did.

As believers, we must not joke with music.

Content of the Music: They sang the song of Moses and the Lamb. Of course the song is not exactly those recorded in Exo15:1-18, Ps 90 but they all have same spirit namely celebrating the power, holiness, marvelous works and the justice of our God. This should be the content of our own music individually and corporately as a church. Any song that does not reflect these attributes of God must be thrashed!!!

Beginning of the wrath

And after that I looked, and, behold, the temple of the tabernacle of the testimony in heaven was opened:And the seven angels came out of the temple, having the seven plagues, clothed in pure and white linen, and having their breasts girded with golden girdles.And one of the four beasts gave unto the seven angels seven golden vials full of the wrath of God, who liveth for ever and ever.And the temple was filled with smoke from the glory of God, and from his power; and no man was able to enter into the temple, till the seven plagues of the seven angels were fulfilled.

These verses outline the commencement of the wrath of God. The temple was opened so that the angels carrying plagues can exit. We should also note the description of the clothing of the angels: pure and white which should also remind us that we must be holy as believer as a prerequisite to seeing God (Heb 12:14).

God is the Everlasting God (He lives forever). Shouldn't we be excited to have this God as our Father? Shouldn't we just trust and obey this Eternal God? No matter what the present situation is, our God who lives forever is still on the throne able to do according to His will, therefore, we must take solace in this.

The glory of God is described here as a smoke similar to description given in Ex 40:35, 19:18, Isa 6:4, I Kings 8:1-66. It is amazing the precision of God's word.

Conclusion

In conclusion, we see a prelude to the judgment bowls containing plagues carried by seven angels. Prior to the exiting of these angels, the saints that had just been vitorious praised God with harps and song. The content of their song must strike chord with us as believers. The song was not about Moses neither should the song we sing be about us but about the majesty, justice, power, holiness, etc of our God. It should also serve as a reminder of what God expects from us:

Micah 6:8 "He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?"

 

Contributor: Akin Akande

Posted by: Isekhua Evborokhai AT 08:52 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
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