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Revelation 16

REVELATION 16

16 Then I heard a loud voice from the temple saying to the seven angels, “Go, pour out the seven bowls of God’s wrath on the earth.”

2The first angel went and poured out his bowl on the land, and ugly and painful sores broke out on the people who had the mark of the beast and worshiped his image.

3The second angel poured out his bowl on the sea, and it turned into blood like that of a dead man, and every living thing in the sea died.

4The third angel poured out his bowl on the rivers and springs of water, and they became blood.  5Then I heard the angel in charge of the waters say:

“You are just in these judgments,

you who are and who were, the Holy One,

because you have so judged;

6for they have shed the blood of your saints and prophets,

and you have given them blood to drink as they deserve.”

7And I heard the altar respond:

“Yes, Lord God Almighty,

true and just are your judgments.”

8The fourth angel poured out his bowl on the sun, and the sun was given power to scorch people with fire.  9They were seared by the intense heat and they cursed the name of God, who had control over these plagues, but they refused to repent and glorify him.

10The fifth angel poured out his bowl on the throne of the beast, and his kingdom was plunged into darkness. Men gnawed their tongues in agony 11and cursed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores, but they refused to repent of what they had done.

12The sixth angel poured out his bowl on the great river Euphrates, and its water was dried up to prepare the way for the kings from the East.  13Then I saw three evil [Greek unclean] spirits that looked like frogs; they came out of the mouth of the dragon, out of the mouth of the beast and out of the mouth of the false prophet.  14They are spirits of demons performing miraculous signs, and they go out to the kings of the whole world, to gather them for the battle on the great day of God Almighty.

15“Behold, I come like a thief! Blessed is he who stays awake and keeps his clothes with him, so that he may not go naked and be shamefully exposed.”

16Then they gathered the kings together to the place that in Hebrew is called Armageddon.

17The seventh angel poured out his bowl into the air, and out of the temple came a loud voice from the throne, saying, “It is done!”  18Then there came flashes of lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder and a severe earthquake. No earthquake like it has ever occurred since man has been on earth, so tremendous was the quake.  19The great city split into three parts, and the cities of the nations collapsed. God remembered Babylon the Great and gave her the cup filled with the wine of the fury of his wrath.  20Every island fled away and the mountains could not be found.  21From the sky huge hailstones of about a hundred pounds each fell upon men. And they cursed God on account of the plague of hail, because the plague was so terrible.

INTRODUCTION

This chapter will give us the detailed accounts of the judgments upon the “beast and its image.” The fourteenth chapter is but a summary of the events while the fifteenth, sixteenth, seventeenth, eighteenth and nineteenth presents the unfolding of the events. The seventh seal lead us to the overthrow of Paganism–the seven trumpets lead us to the overthrow of the Roman Empire–Now the seven vials lead us to the overthrow of the Beast. Each one of the series of sevens leads up to the fulfillment of an epoch. It is important to understand that the seven bowls of wrath are to be poured upon the “beast with seven heads and ten horns.” She is variously described as the harlot, the great city Babylon, the scarlet adulteress, etc. After the Reformation, which brought untold misery to the Roman Church, she still did not repent but rather asserted that she was infallible. As we look at 2 Thess. 2:9,l0 we are told that she would use signs and wonders, lies and miracles. Now John sees unclean spirits, as it were frogs, coming out of the mouth of the dragon, out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet.” The final triumph will come when the Lord calls her to judgment at Har-Magedon.

EXPOSITION

      1    Then I heard a loud voice from the temple saying to the seven angels, “Go, pour out the seven bowls of God’s wrath on the earth.”

 Notice that these seven angels have the seven last plagues that will be sent upon mankind. The text declares that they contain the wrath of God. These series will bring everything to a close regarding the beast with seven heads and ten horns. Do not confuse this with the end of the world. Remember we still have chapter twenty, twenty one, and twenty two.

      2    The first angel went and poured out his bowl on the land, and ugly and painful sores broke out on the people who had the mark of the beast and worshiped his image.

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The prophet describes a painful and malignant sore filled with foul corruption. (Loathsome miligant ulcers) Modern English. We will look for a moral and spiritual corruption that took place at the end of the 1260-year period that will be a fitting symbol of that event. France had been the strongest and staunchest supporter of the Roman Church. Charlemagne had bestowed the temporal power upon the Papacy. France had long been styled “The eldest son of the church.” She had perpetrated the massacre of Bartholomew, the banishment of the Huguenots, Popes war against the Albigenses (Bohemian Brethren) Martyrdom of John Calas, the inquisitions (150,000 in 30 years). The rise of the Jesuits in 1540, in which 900,000 persons perished. In 1793 this ulcer of the French Revolution had festered and broke–the enslaved masses who were maddened into fury sent Catholic king, royal families, nobles and priests to the guillotine by tens of thousands, impelling the nation in madness and fury to declare itself atheistic. At one time over 200,000 were imprisoned and as many as 80 were sent to the scaffold in one day in Paris alone. The papal power received a shock from which it has never recovered. Few events have so powerfully influenced the political and economic development of the modern world as the French revolution. This seems to fit the chronology of events in world history.

      3    The second angel poured out his bowl on the sea, and it turned into blood like that of a dead man, and every living thing in the sea died.

Cf. The second trumpet in Chapter 8:8. During nineteen years of almost constant war Napoleon inflicted upon Europe the most appalling miseries. In 1780 France and England were nearly matched upon the sea. With 1793 begins a contest for the mastery of the seas. It continues for 20 years. France, by Napoleon’s concordat with the Pope, with Catholic Spain, Portugal, and Italy, fought with Protestant England for the masteries of the sea[CH7]. The old Catholic powers who have been vile instruments of Papal wrong go down to defeat. In the deadly struggle 600 ships of the line (Largest war vessels) and l,000 smaller war ships are sunk. The naval power of Catholic Europe is swept from the ocean. Once the Pope claimed dominion of the seas.  Now his proud claim is gone forever. The Spanish empire was practically destroyed and the Catholic church lost control of the sea. In 1801 Napoleon became ruler of France and soon virtual ruler of all Papal Europe, Spain, Belgium, Holland, Italy, Austria. France was the controlling power of the continent. No such scorching sun had arisen in the political horizon for more than a 1,000 years. The world had never seen such a scourge of a man. He converted all Europe into a camp. 2,000,000 men perished by the sword, misery, despair, brooded over the lands. In 1797 He entered the Papal dominions. The Pope bought him off with large sums of money and half his provinces. The next year the Pope is taken a prisoner to France to die–the next Pope is elected in Venice. In 1800 he is permitted to return to his broken sepchere–in 1804 he was compelled to journey to Paris and crown Napoleon old emperor of Romans. Four years later Pius VII was dragged from his palace and sent a prisoner into France. His personal belongings were confiscated. Napoleon broke the spell of Rome. Until the fall of Napoleon the Pope was without temporal possession.

      4    The third angel poured out his bowl on the rivers and springs of water, and they became blood.

World War 1 was known as the Great War. Read the account of it in the history books and it will be apparent that this war was aimed at the guilty sinners in the continent over which this apostate Catholic Church ruled. It is also noteworthy to notice that a large number of battles took place on rivers and fountains of waters. The following quotes from the war chronicles of the New Columbia Ency. will surely substantiate this claim:

Battle of the Marne[p.1702]: Two important battles of world war I that are named for the Marne River. In the first battle (Sept. 6-9, l914) the Germans advance on Paris was halted at the Marne by the Allies under Joffre, Gallileni, and Sir John French. The German retreat that followed signified the abandonment of the Schlieffen plan. In the second battle (July 1918) the last great German offensive was decisively repulsed by the Allies.

Battle of Ypres (between Scheldt River and the North Sea) [pages 330-331]: Three major engagements of World War I fought in and around the town of Ypres in SW Belgium. The first battle of Ypres (Oct.–Nov. 1914) was the last of the series of engagements referred to as the race to the sea. The German thrust toward the Channel ports of Dunkirk and Calais was stopped by the British at Ypres, but in the process of British Expeditionary force of l00,000 was reduced to half its original size. The second battle began on April 22, 1915, when the Germans using poison gas for the first time in the war, launched another massive assault on the salient at Ypres. The attack was unsuccessful and was broken off in May. The third battle for Ypres,popularly known as passchendaele, began on July 11, 1917, and continued until November. The British sought to break the German line, but, bogged down by mud and rain, they advanced only 5 miles at a cost of 300,000 lives.

Battles of Masuria {page 1719}, The Masuria Lakes region, North Poland, where more than 2,700 lakes are located, was the scene of heavy fighting early in World War I.

Battle of Verdun [page2878], Verdun, located on the Meuse River, was an old, famous, influential Roman Catholic Church city. It was the longest and the bloodiest engagements of World War I. Two Million men were engaged…in the end the losses for the German Army was 328,500 and the French 348,000.

      5    Then I heard the angel in charge of the waters say: “You are just in these judgments, you who are and who were, the Holy One, because you have so judged;

      6    for they have shed the blood of your saints and prophets, and you have given them blood to drink as they deserve.”

      7    And I heard the altar respond: “Yes, Lord God Almighty, true and just are your judgments.”

      8    The fourth angel poured out his bowl on the sun, and the sun was given power to scorch people with fire.

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 The flag of Japan has the Sun on it . This empire had a scorching sun when two atomic bombs exploded on Hiroshima Aug 6th 1945, and on Aug 9th 1945 on Nagasaki. During the six years of World War II the most powerful weapons were used to scorch men with fire. The following quote from The New Columbia Ency P. 3009 will illustrate this:

Despite the birth of the UN, the world remained politically unstable and only slowly recovered from the incalculable physical and moral devastation wrought by the largest and most costly war in mankind’s history. Civilians and soldiers had suffered alike in bombings that had wiped out entire cities. Modern methods of warfare, together with the attempt of Germany to exterminate whole racial groups (particularly the Jews), famines, and epidemics had brought death to tens of millions and made as many more homeless. The suffering and degradation of the war’s victims were of proportions that passed the understanding of those who had been spared. The conventions of warfare had been violated on a large scale, and the technique of warfare itself was revolutionized by the use of nuclear weapons.

      9    They were seared by the intense heat and they cursed the name of God, who had control over these plagues, but they refused to repent and glorify him.

      10  The fifth angel poured out his bowl on the throne of the beast, and his kingdom was plunged into darkness. Men gnawed their tongues in agony

From the time that Napoleon crossed the Alps, descended on Italy and took Pope Pius VI a prisoner into France to die, The Catholic church has been in turmoil. She has been in disarray year after year. Her problems have extended from priests marrying, nuns having more say, doctrine and tradition changes to ecunimunism. This once all-powerful apostate church has sunk into a quagmire of darkness. She still refuses to repent of her idolatry and continues to blaspheme God.

      11  and cursed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores, but they refused to repent of what they had done.

      12  The sixth poured out his bowl on the on the great river Euphrates, and its water was dried up to prepare the way for the kings from the East.

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While desert storm may not meet all the requirements of the text if we are prepared to wait the final outcome of this engagement we will probably witness in graphic detail all the things that are within the confines of this text. It appears to the author of this book that it is still an ongoing operation. We are still sending inspectors there. We are concerned about biological, chemical and germ warfare. This rogue kingdom at the Euphrates River with Hussain at the head claims to be the Nebuchadnezzar of ancient times. We must look for something to develop in that area of the world. When it does it will be easy to identify by Bible believers.

      13  Then I saw three evil spirits that looked like frogs; they came out of the mouth of the dragon, out of the mouth of the beast and out of the mouth of the false prophet.

Take a look at what the Apostle Paul said about signs and lying wonders in 2 Thess. 2:9-l0.  Notice that these are unclean spirits, spirits of demons working miraculous signs. No church on earth has so many lying wonders and miraculous signs as Catholicism. During the final plague out of paganism, Papalism, and Mohammadism will come evil spirits that will assemble nations for the final battle.

      14  They are spirits of demons performing miraculous signs, and they go out to the kings of the whole world, to gather them for the battle on the great day of God Almighty.

      15  “Behold, I come like a thief! Blessed is he who stays awake and keeps his clothes with him, so that he may not go naked and be shamefully exposed.”

      16  Then they gathered the kings together to the place that in Hebrew is called Armageddon.

The final warfare will be in the Far East.

      17  The seventh angel poured out his bowl into the air, and out of the temple came a loud voice from the throne, saying, “It is done!”

Take note that the other plagues took place on land, rivers, and waters but this one will have something to do with the air. Could this have reference to space? Could this have some connection to satellites and other future space vehicles? There is little doubt that this battle will make World War I and II look insignificant. It is shaping up to happen in the near future. This is Armageddon!

      18  Then there came flashes of lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder and a severe earthquake. No earthquake like it has ever occurred since man has been on earth, so tremendous was the quake.

This could be triggered by atomic blasts.

      19  The great city split into three parts, and the cities of the nations collapsed. God remembered Babylon the Great and gave her the cup filled with the wine of the fury of his wrath.

      20  Every island fled away and the mountains could not be found.

As we have noted in previous chapters that Mountains represented kingdoms and Islands represented small nations scattered throughout the ocean. Such as the British Isles. This could have reference to the collapse of governments.

      21  From the sky huge hailstones of about a hundred pounds each fell upon men. And they cursed God on account of the plague of hail, because the plague was so terrible.

Remember that John had never seen airplanes or space vehicles. He had never seen a bomb. Could this symbolize a terrible bombing raid?

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