Deeper Christian Life Ministry – Search The Scripture 2 May 2021 (Lesson 998)
Topic: Preparation For The Great Battle Of Armageddon (STS 2 May 2021)
MEMORY VERSE: “And there fen upon men a great hail out of heaven, every stone about the weight of a talent: and men blasphemed God because of the plague of the hail; for the plague thereof was exceeding geat” (Revelation 16:21).
TEXT: Revelation 16:1-21
1 And I heard a great voice out of the temple saying to the seven angels, Go your ways, and pour out the vials of the wrath of God upon the earth.
2 And the first went, and poured out his vial upon the earth; and there fell a noisome and grievous sore upon the men which had the mark of the beast, and upon them which worshipped his image.
3 And the second angel poured out his vial upon the sea; and it became as the blood of a dead man: and every living soul died in the sea.
4 And the third angel poured out his vial upon the rivers and fountains of waters; and they became blood.
5 And I heard the angel of the waters say, Thou art righteous, O Lord, which art, and wast, and shalt be, because thou hast judged thus.
6 For they have shed the blood of saints and prophets, and thou hast given them blood to drink; for they are worthy.
7 And I heard another out of the altar say, Even so, Lord God Almighty, true and righteous are thy judgments.
8 And the fourth angel poured out his vial upon the sun; and power was given unto him to scorch men with fire.
9 And men were scorched with great heat, and blasphemed the name of God, which hath power over these plagues: and they repented not to give him glory.
10 And the fifth angel poured out his vial upon the seat of the beast; and his kingdom was full of darkness; and they gnawed their tongues for pain,
11 And blasphemed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores, and repented not of their deeds.
12 And the sixth angel poured out his vial upon the great river Euphrates; and the water thereof was dried up, that the way of the kings of the east might be prepared.
13 And I saw three unclean spirits like frogs come out of the mouth of the dragon, and out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet.
14 For they are the spirits of devils, working miracles, which go forth unto the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty.
15 Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed is he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame.
16 And he gathered them together into a place called in the Hebrew tongue Armageddon.
17 And the seventh angel poured out his vial into the air; and there came a great voice out of the temple of heaven, from the throne, saying, It is done.
18 And there were voices, and thunders, and lightnings; and there was a great earthquake, such as was not since men were upon the earth, so mighty an earthquake, and so great.
19 And the great city was divided into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell: and great Babylon came in remembrance before God, to give unto her the cup of the wine of the fierceness of his wrath.
20 And every island fled away, and the mountains were not found.
21 And there fell upon men a great hail out of heaven, every stone about the weight of a talent: and men blasphemed God because of the plague of the hail; for the plague thereof was exceeding great.
As the seven-year great tribulation races to a close, the outpouring of God’s judgments will increase in pace and intensity and culminate into the battle of Armageddon, which the Antichrist and his followers will stage against the second advent of the Lord and His millennial reign. The word, ‘Armageddon’, formed from two Hebrew words, means ‘Mountain of Megiddo.’ Megiddo was a town belonging to Manasseh, although within the limits of Issachar in Israel (Joshua 17:11). Despite the physical suffering and trauma of previous judgments during the tribulation, unrepentant men who are deceived and influenced by the spirits of Satan, the Antichrist and the false Prophet will gather in battle against the Lord’s coming and millennial reign. It is obvious that neither the infinite love of God and Christ nor divine punishment can change those who have willed their souls to the devil. Thus, they will gather behind the Antichrist against the person, plan and purpose of God for the world to be accomplished by the Second Coming of the Lord. But “Woe unto him that striveth with his Maker!… The adversaries of the LORD shall be broken to pieces; out of heaven shall he thunder upon them: the LORD shall judge the ends of the earth” (Isaiah 45:9; 1 Samuel 2:10). The host of darkness cannot thwart the purpose of God; the counsel of the Lord shall stand.
Question 1: Where and when will the battle of Armageddon be fought?
In this chapter, the vials or bowls of wrath are poured upon all who worship the image of the Beast and upon the earth (verse 2), the sea (verse 3), rivers and fountains of waters (verse 4), the sun (verse 8), the seat of the Beast (verse 10), the great river Euphrates (verse 12) and into the air (verse 17). The judgment is full, frightening and final. To escape these devastations through the rapture, sinners should repent and be saved while believers should maintain a holy life, watch, pray and propagate the gospel to rescue others.
DESTRUCTIVE VIALS OF GOD’S WRATH UPON THE EARTH AND ITS INHABITANTS (Revelation 16:1-11; 13: 16; 14:9-11; Exodus 9:8-11; 1 Samuel 5:6,7; Exodus 7: 17-21; Revelation 8:8-11; Psalm 78:43,44; Jeremiah 10: 10; Revelation 6:17)
A great voice from the temple in heaven commands seven angels saying, “Go your ways, and pour out the vials [or bowls] of the wrath of God upon the earth” Awfully, angels who had been messengers of mercy become ministers of fury and fire and vials or censers previously used in worship and intercession become instruments of wrath and indignation because of men’s hardness of heart. As the first vial of wrath or bowl of judgment is poured out, painful and grievous sores came upon all who have the mark of the Antichrist and worship his image. These sores will be malignant, incurable, ulcerous, and painful boils like Job’s. The second angel pours out the vial of God’s wrath upon the sea. This makes the sea become as blood, killing all fish and other creatures in it. This will be similar to the terrible plague which came upon Egypt. That was the manifestation of God’s wrath on a nation but this will be on the whole world. No language can fully describe the suffering on earth as the third angel pours the vial of divine wrath to also make rivers and fountains of waters become blood. While people bear the brunt of divine wrath, another angel proclaims God’s righteousness in judging the people on earth. God is upright, just and impartial as the omniscient Judge (Psalm 119:137; Romans Luke 11:49-51; Hebrews 10:29-31; 1 Peter 1:17; Hebrews 2:1-3). These sinners did not only reject God’s grace, mercy and salvation, they also persecuted and killed the saints who received the truth and the prophets who preached it. Those who are ignorant of the depth of man’s wickedness may consider the severity of these jüdgments to be out of proportion but the angel sees only the act of a righteous God bringing just retribution on the guilty. The Christ-rejecters who follow the Antichrist and worship the great deceiver are “worthy” of earthly and eternal suffering. The fourth vial of wrath is poured upon the sun and men are scorched with great heat (Revelation 8: 12; Luke Revelation Exodus 10:21-23; Isaiah 9: 13; Jeremiah 5:3; Hebrews 3:11-15). During the great tribulation, the sun which had been a source of blessing for many centuries will become an instrument of judgment scorching many to death. Surprisingly, survivors of sunburn “repented not to give him glory” because of hardness of heart. Believers are commanded to daily exhort other believers against hardness of heart and departing from the living and loving God. The outpouring of the vial of wrath by the fifth angel is upon “the seat of the beast” or the throne of the Antichrist and “his kingdom was full of darkness, and they gnawed their tongues for pain”. There will be terrible anguish, yet men will refuse to repent! When love or wrath, goodness or judgment fails to lead men to repentance, eternal punishment is inescapable.
Question 2: Highlight the first five vials of God’s Judgment poured out upon the earth and the lessons from them.
PREPARATION FOR THE GREAT BATTLE OF ARMAGEDDON AND THE SECOND COMING OF CHRIST (Revelation 16:12-15; Isaiah 2 Thessalonians 2:9-11; 1 John 4:1-3; 2 Corinthians 11:13-15; Revelation 19:20; Matthew 24:24)
As the events of the great tribulation unfolds towards the ultimate defeat and downfall of the Antichrist, “the sixth angel poured out his vial upon the great river Euphrates” and it dried up “that the way of the kings of the east might be prepared”. This will make way for the eastern confederate army to reach Palestine and get to Armageddon. Meanwhile, “three unclean spirits” from the dragon or Satan, the beast or the Antichrist and the false prophet will produce deceptive miracles to convince the kings of the earth and of the whole world to gather in battle against the almighty God. These spirits deceive Satan’s forces that they can overpower the army of Israel, God’s chosen nation they are scheming to destroy at Armageddon. Lying wonders and deceptive miracles done by false prophets always instigate people to oppose the true gospel and fight against God. Believers must not relent in preaching the truth which is the antidote to the spread of falsehood and damnation of souls. At the end of the great tribulation, the impact of the supernatural acts of evil power will be so great as to induce, not just the eastern kings but all the world to gather in Palestine for the great battle of Armageddon. The war will end when Christ arrives (Revelation 19:17-20).
Question 3: How was the Antichrist able to assemble a great host in readiness for the battle of Armageddon and what do believers learn from this?
“Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed is he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame”. Christ’s second coming, a pivotal teaching of Scripture and hope of all believers, is certain (Revelation 1:7; 3: 1 1; 22: 7, 12,20; I John 3:1- 3; Matthew 24:42-51; 25:1-13). Our Lord calls us to watchfulness and consistency in holiness so we will not be ashamed for being naked and bereft of the required virtues but be found worthy of Him when He comes (1 Thessalonians 2 Peter 3:9-14; Mark 13:33-37; Luke 12:34-40). “But the end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer…abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming” (1 Peter 4:7; 1 John 2:28). God is faithful to His promise not to punish the righteous with the wicked. During the great tribulation, some will reject the mark of the beast and accept Jesus as the Lord and Saviour and be spared eternal judgment. God will always spare the righteous (Ezekiel 9:1-11).
Question 4: How should sinners and believers prepare for the coming of the Lord?
DEVASTATING WARFARE AND PUNISHMENT OF CONTEMPTUOUS REPROBATES (Revelation 16:16- 21; Joel 3:9-16; Psalm Micah 4:11-13; Revelation Ezekiel 38:20-23; Zechariah Revelation 18:2-10; Jeremiah 4:23-25; Exodus 9:23-25; Isaiah 8:21,22)
“And he gathered them together into a place called in the Hebrew tongue Armageddon” or the Mount of Megiddo, 60 miles North of Jerusalem. The battle of Armageddon will complete the outpouring of God’s wrath on the sinful world and it will immediately precede Second Coming of Christ. The worst calamities in the history of the world will happen during this war. With the massive convergence of forces of the devil to battle already besieged Jerusalem, the seventh angel empties his bowl “into the air; and there came a great voice out of the temple of heaven, from the throne, saying, it is done”. Now, the wickedness of the wicked must come to an end. Terrifying voices, thunders and lightening with the most devastating earthquake in earth’s history bring the manifestation of divine fury on the ungodly to a climax. “And the great city was divided into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell: and great Babylon came in remembrance before God, to give the cup of the wine of the fierceness of his wrath. And every island fled away, and the mountains were not found. And there fell upon men a great hail out of heaven, every stone about the weight of a talent: and men blasphemed God because of the plague of the hail; for the plague thereof was exceeding great.” Babylon will be the capital of the Antichrist’s empire and it will receive a special outpouring of God’s wrath. The supernatural aerial attacks on the devil’s infernal troops weaken the forces to make Armageddon a brief encounter. These plagues and judgment will not convert the followers and worshipers of the Antichrist; their doom and darnnation are irreversible. They will continue to blaspheme God until they are eternally banished to the lake of fire.
Question 5: Describe how the battle of Armageddon Would be fought and the outcome of it.
Heaven’s arsenal reminds of the Lord’s question to Job. “Hast thou entered into the treasures of the snow? or hast thou seen the treasures of the hail, which I have reserved against the time of trouble, against the battle and war?” (Job 38:22,23). Puny man backed by the old serpent will not be able to withstand the array of the Lord’s infinitely superior forces both at this preparatory level to Armageddon and in the hostilities proper. Cast out of heaven, the devil with his followers cannot withstand the Lord of host. The outcome of this battle recorded in Revelation chapter 19:11-21;n20:1-3 shows the Lord will conquer them and establish His millennial reign on earth.
Question 6: What would be the lot of rebels and reprobates at the coming of the Lord?
In view of the imminent return of the Lord and doom of the ungodly, believers should abide consistently in holiness and commit themselves to untiring soul- winning and teaching of the wholesome truths of the gospel. Sinners should repent and forsake their sins and accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour to avoid the wrath of God.
Flatimes’ Notice Board: Until you are born again, God ever abiding presence will never be with you. You must be born again to enjoy continuous victory. Please say the displayed prayer below in faith:
Lord Jesus, come into my life. I accept You as my Lord and Personal Saviour. I believe in my heart You died and rose from the dead to save me. Thank You Lord for saving me, in Jesus name Amen.
If you just prayed the prayer of salvation online please send your testimonies and prayer request to HELP LINES: +234(8157991934, 8157991936, 8157991937) E-MAIL: email@example.com