The Terrible Harvest of The Ungodly Will Take Place
Previously we had noted the fact that the great day of earth’s harvest is coming, the harvest of the ungodly and evil of this world. Jesus Christ is going to judge all the ungodly and evil of this world. Not a single person will escape. A lot of people listening to this on the radio or reading this on the world wide web is not going to like what we are presenting. However, remember that God, in His Word, is making the statements we will be hearing or seeing, not man.
FACT: The day is coming when the world will be ripe for judgment–a day when ungodliness and evil run rampant upon earth. Horrors of lawlessness and evil and murder will be so wild that the Father, the Lord Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit simply cannot take it anymore.
FACT: GOD WILL JUDGE THE EVIL AND UNSAVED MAN IN WRATH, NOT IN LOVE.
The people of the world will be engulfed in idolatry, murder, sorcery, immorality, and stealing. They will be so materialistic and worldly, atheistic and God-rejecting that there will be no hope whatsoever that they will ever change and turn to God.
There is coming a time when the situation upon earth is utterly hopeless and helpless. When that day comes, then Jesus Christ shall reap the earth. As we have seen in the previous study both the saved and the unsaved will be reaped, the saved will be taken to heaven and the unsaved will be taken to hell.
When that day comes, then comes the GREAT TRIBULATION of the earth. And in the end of that GREAT TRIBULATION, in the very last day of world history, the Lord Jesus Christ will carry out the reaping. First the godly of the earth will be [reaped] and taken to heaven and secondly, the lost will be caught up in the battle of Armageddon (Revelation 14:14-16).
Do not miss the separation of the two groups in the previous passage that we looked at. We saw the wonderful reaping of the godly, which means that they will be taken to heaven. Today, this passage (Revelation 14:17-20) looks at the reaping of the ungodly and evil of the world who will be taken to hell.
So, let’s consider some facts about today’s reaping:
- The harvester: another angel (verse 17).
- The terror of the harvest of the ungodly (verses 18-19).
- The terror of Armageddon, the place where the wrath of God falls. (verse 20).
Previously we had considered Isaiah who graphically pictures the scene (Isaiah 63:1-6).
As we consider the prophecy of Joel, there some are things we want to keep in mind.
- The prophecy of Joel 2:28-32, cited by the apostle Peter (Acts 2:16-21), concerns the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, not the formation of the church.
- The apostle Paul wrote of Gentiles and Jews, who are saved during the tribulation age and who are saved during this age, as having equal status and blessing in Christ (Galatians 3:28; Ephesians 1:3), as well as their being members of the same body, His Church (Ephesians 1:22-23).
This truth was a mystery (Ephesians 3:3-9), unknown during Old Testament times. These mysteries are “SACRED SECRETS,” or divine truths, that had not been revealed in previous ages but that have been made known to the Lord’s people by the New Testament (Ephesians 3:1-2,9; Romans 16:25).
For information sake let’s review a list of 15 mysteries:
- The Mysteries of the Kingdom (Matthew 13:11; Mark 4:11; Luke 8:10).
- The Mystery of Israel’s Blindness (Romans 11:25).
- The Mystery of the Gospel (Romans 16:25; Ephesians 6:19; Colossians 4:3).
- The Mystery of God’s Wisdom (I Corinthians 2:6-8).
- The Mystery of the Changed Body (I Corinthians 15:51).
- The Mystery of God’s Decretive Will (Ephesians 1:9).
- The Mystery of Gentiles and Jews Belonging to The Same Body (Ephesians 3:3,9).
- The Mystery of The Union Between Jesus and His People (Colossians 1:26-27).
- The Mystery of God and Christ (Colossians 2:2-3).
- The Mystery of The Faith (I Timothy 3:9).
- The mystery of Christ (Ephesians 3:4).
- The Mystery of Godliness (I Timothy 3:16).
- The Mystery of The Seven Stars And Lampstands (Revelation 1:20).
- The Mystery of God (Revelation 10:7).
- The Mystery of Babylon (Revelation 17:5).
Today we will consider Joel as he graphically pictures the scene in Joel 3:9-17.
JOEL GRAPHICALLY PICTURES THE SCENE – JOEL 3:9-17
DEALING WITH THE REAPING OF THE EARTH
“Proclaim ye this among the Gentiles; Prepare war, wake up the mighty men, let all the men of war draw near; let them come up: beat your plowshares into swords, and your, pruninghooks into spears: let the weak say, I am strong. Assemble yourselves, and come, all ye heathen, and gather yourselves together round about: thither cause thy mighty ones to come down, O LORD. Let the heathen be wakened, and come up to the valley of Jehoshaphat: for there will I sit to judge all the heathen round about. Put ye in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe: come, get you down; for the press is full, the fats overflow; for their wickedness is great. Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision: for the day of the LORD is near in the valley of decision. The sun and the moon shall be darkened, and the stars shall withdraw their shining. The LORD also shall roar out of Zion, and utter his voice from Jerusalem; and the heavens and the earth shall shake: but the LORD will be the hope of his people, and the strength of the children of Israel. So shall ye know that I am the LORD your God dwelling in Zion, my holy mountain: then shall Jerusalem be holy, and there shall be no strangers [ungodly heathen] pass through her any more” (Joel 3:9-17).
ALSO, THE REVELATION GRAPHICALLY PICTURES FOR US THE SCENE.
“And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called, The Word of God. And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean. And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh is a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS. And I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the fowls that fly in the midst of heaven, Come and gather yourselves together unto the supper of the great God; that ye may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses, and of them that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great. And I saw the beast [antichrist], and kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against him that sat on the horse, and against his army. And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshiped his image. These both were cast ALIVE into a lake of fire burning with brimstone. And the remnant were slain with the sword of him that sat upon the horse, which sword proceeded out of his mouth: and all the fowls were filled with their flesh” (Revelation 19:13-21).
Now we shall see the truth of Second Thessalonians as it also graphically describes the scene.
“And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth [His Word], and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming [His glory]: even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, and with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: that they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness” (2 Thessalonians 2:8-12).
Now let’s move to Revelation 15:1-8, and the seven bowl judgments of 15:1-16:21.
Here is an OVERVIEW THAT WILL HELP US:
- Revelation 15:1 – The sign of judgment in heaven
- The reason for the judgment: Believers will be martyred by the Beast or Antichrist
- They will be before the throne of God on the sea of glass.
- They will be victorious over the Antichrist.
- They will be given harps: Rest and Praise.
- They will sing the songs of victory …
to the mighty God: to His works.
to the King of Saints or Nations: to the truth & justice of His ways.
to the Lord: to the fear and glory of His name.
to the holy & just God: for all nations shall worship Him. (Revelation 15:2-4).
- The judgment of God will be sent forth:
a. The door to God’s presence is opened (verse 5).
b. The seven angels come out from God’s presence with seven plagues (verse 6).
c. The seven angels are given seven bowls of judgment (verse 7).
d. The door of heaven and of salvation is closed (verse 8).
Now let’s consider Revelation 15:1-8 in depth:
Revelation reveals that there is to be a terrible time coming upon the earth in the end time, a time so terrible Christ Himself described it as the GREAT TRIBULATION (Matthew 24:21). Revelation uses some descriptive language to describe this period of time. It calls the judgments of the period, trumpet judgment, picturing the blast of trumpets. There have been seven trumpet judgments altogether. But when the seventh trumpet blasted an amazing thing happened.
There was no blast of judgment, not immediately. Instead, an over-all picture of the end time was blown forth:
- There was a picture of Israel being chosen as the nation through which God would send His Son into the world, the picture of Jesus Christ coming to earth as the Savior of the world (Revelation 12:6-17).
- There was the picture of the Dragon, that old serpent, who is called the Devil and Satan, working to get men to be ungodly and evil–all because he wants to cut and hurt the heart of God (Revelation 12:16-17).
- There was the picture of the Antichrist and of his right-hand man, coming down to the earth. The picture of earth and the launching of the worst holocaust the world has ever seen (Revelation 13:1-18).
- There was the glorious picture of the very end of the world when Jesus Christ triumphs over all the ungodly and evil of this world, the picture of Jesus Christ harvesting the earth, of His taking believers to heaven with Him and judging unbelievers (Revelation 14:1-20).
Now, the seventh trumpet blasts forth its judgments. And the judgments come fast and furious. Why? Because they are the very last judgments. God has decided to end human history.
He can no longer take the rebellion, denial, cursing, immorality, stealing, drunkenness, sorcery, and murder of man. Therefore, Jesus Christ will destroy all the ungodly and evil of this world and do it quickly.
Remember: the whole tribulation period will last seven years. It will be divided into two periods. The first period will be three and one-half years and is called “the beginning of sorrows.”
Note: The last period will also be three and 1/2 years, and it is called the GREAT TRIBULATION.
- When the tribulation begins, and during the first three and 1/2 years, there will be seven seal judgments that will take place upon earth (Revelation 6:1-7:17).
- When the GREAT TRIBULATION itself begins, the final three and 1/2 years, there will be seven trumpet judgments that will take place on earth, (Revelation 8:1-14-14:20).
- Then, at the very end of the Tribulation period, there will be seven more judgments, the seven bowl judgments. The bowl judgments will end human history as we know it.
This passage is the heavenly preparation for judgment. This is the preparation that will be made for the launch of the judgments that will end all the ungodliness and evil of man upon earth.
- The sign of judgment in heaven (Revelation 15:1).
- The reason for the judgment: believers will be martyred by the Beast or Antichrist (verses Revelation 15:2-4).
- The judgment of God will be sent forth (verses 5-8).
Let’s begin with Revelation 15:1: Heaven and God’s Wrath
There is the sign of God’s judgment in heaven. The scene in heaven strikes reverence in the human heart.
Note: The scene in heaven is said to be a sign…
- that is great and awesome.
- of seven mighty angels or messengers prepared to go forth for God.
- of seven plagues that are said to be LAST PLAGUES.
- of God’s wrath.
This awesome sign in heaven is intended to stir people to bow before God who is JUST. God is love, joy, peace and glory but God is also just. And His justice is ready to be executed upon earth. His wrath against all ungodly and evil upon this earth is ready to fall. God is ready to clean up the earth and to bring the reign of godliness and righteousness, love and joy, peace and glory. Therefore, man must prepare: repent and get ready before it is too late.
“And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand” (Matthew 3:2).
“I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish” (Luke 13:3).
“Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee” (Acts 8:22).
“Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon” (Isaiah 55:7).
Next time we will continue our study of Revelation with Chapter 15:2-4. We will see Believers in the end time, and the reason for judgment–that is, Believers will be slaughtered by the Beast or Antichrist. This explains why the wrath of God is going to fall upon the earth in the last days. I think you will find it interesting and challenging at the same time. May God bless you richly as you study His word.
“Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth,” (2 Timothy 2:15).
If you do not know Christ as your personal Lord and Savior, please read John 3:16 and travel the road to heaven found in Romans 10:9-13. Rest assured that God loves you and wants you to spend eternity with Him in heaven. However, there is only one way and that comes THROUGH the Lord Jesus Christ. (See Acts 15:11; Ephesians 2:8-10.)
Please remember that the Bible is God’s Word and it is His love letter written from His heart to you. Do not miss that the Bible says to you that today is the day of salvation……if you want it (2 Corinthians 6:2).
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