I recently discovered an interesting sequence in the book of Revelation. It revolves around the mysterious 144,000 mentioned in Revelation chapters 7 and 14. First just a few side notes on chapter 7:
In the midst of this are the 7 seals, 7 trumpets and 7 vials. In each of these 3 groups there are 6 presentations followed by a gap or interlude before the 7th presentation. It also seems as though the 7th presentation of each group begets the next group. Jesus initiates the opening of the seals and then the 7th seal launches the trumpets and then the 7th trumpet launches the vials.
The interlude between the 6th and 7th seals starts with 4 angels that stop the wind from blowing over the entire earth, which I see as a type of spiritual drought and as others say a holding back on God’s wrath (grace). Another angel ***rises up*** from the east saying to the 4 - wait, don’t hurt the earth yet until we have sealed the servants of God in their foreheads. So there is obviously some sealing taking place before the 7th seal is fully opened. Then we see the naming off of the 144,000 that are of the lineage of the 12 tribes of Israel. Here are the names of those tribes in the order that they are written in chapter 7 along with the English translation of the Hebrew names:
Judah = praise
Reuben = behold (see) a son
Gad = a troop (to crowd upon; attack)
Asher = blessed (happy)
Naphtali = (my) wrestling
Manasseh = forgetting
Simeon = hearkening (hearing)
Levi = joined to
Issachar = reward (there is a recompense)
Zebulun = a habitation
Joseph = let him add (Jehovah has added)
Benjamin = son of the right hand
Here’s what came from this sequence of names as they are joined together:
(Praise the Lord), (See the lineage of sons and daughters), (an army pressing in and attacking), (blessed and rejoicing are they), (as they wrestle the adversaries and overcome them), (forgetting their old lives and the old nature), (hearing God’s words of a new and living way), (joined to Him in knowing) (that He will reward us and there will be a full recompense on iniquity), (and there will be an eternal habitation), (for God the Father has given us), (the Son of God at His right hand)
Revelation 14 begins as we see these people before the throne of God. They are described as they were as they ended their lives on earth – they were undefiled with women, they followed the Lamb wherever He went, they were redeemed from among men (being the first fruits to the Father and the Son), and no guile was found in their mouths. Sounds like these are some pretty cleaned up folks - having been made ready to do something.
Then we read of an angel having the everlasting gospel to preach to the entire world. The emphasis of this gospel comes with 3 final presentations in verses 7-10:1.) FEAR GOD AND GIVE GLORY TO HIM AND WORSHIP HIM – because the HOUR of his judgment is here.2.) That great city of Babylon is fallen, is fallen because SHE made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of HER fornication 3.) If anyone worships the beast (1), and worships his image (2), and receives his mark or seal (the mark of his name in verse 11) in his forehead or in his hand (3) – 3 things – the same shall drink the payback of the whore’s wine, which is the wine of God’s wrath, which is poured out in full measure.
Verses 12 and 13: This calls for patient endurance on the part of the people of God who keep his commands and remain faithful to Jesus. Then I heard a voice from heaven say, “Write this: Blessed are the dead (to this life) who die in the Lord from this point on.” “Yes,” says the Spirit, “they will rest from their labor, for their deeds will follow them.”
This is the time of the harvest as the line of demarcation is drawn – there are only 2 sides to choose now, and you know that as long as the gospel is being preached – people will be able to repent and be saved!
May the Lord bless us and continue to show us favor and give us grace as this time rapidly approaches.