Prophecy Part 73 – The Fate of Believers in the Great Tribulation, Pt. 2, Revelation 7:9-17

All Scripture quoted herein is from the KJV translation of the Bible.

A NUMBERLESS MULTITUDE OF MARTYRS WHO WILL BE SAVED

Good question:  Who shall be saved during the awful tribulation coming upon earth?  The Terrible Tribulation is coming in the end time, right before the end of the world.

  • The time will be so terrible that one fourth of the earth’s population will be destroyed by war, famine, pestilence, hunger, and starvation
  • It will be a time so terrible that the Bible calls it the period of Death and Hell.
  • Remember, however, that this is just the beginning.
  • This period is so terrible that it can only be called the “great tribulation.”
  • When it comes it will seem that there is no end of death, destruction and loss of life.
  • So, the question is: “Is there any hope for people in this terrible time of destruction and death?”
  • The answer is, “yes!”  There will be a numberless multitude of believers that will be saved. Notice some things about this group.
  1. Their origin: everywhere (Revelation 7:9).
  2. Their glorious position (v. 9-10).
  3. Their glorious companions (v. 11-12).
  4. Their identity – an elder asks John about the identity of the multitudes (v. 13-14).
  5. Their function: to serve God continuously (v. 15).
  6. Their blessings:  bliss (v. 15-17).

Revelation 7:9 There is the origin of the numberless multitude.  Who are They?  They are people from everywhere (Revelation 5:9).

  • They are from all nations.
  • They are from all tribes.  No tribe on earth will be left out. All tribes will have some of their people saved.
  • They are from all people.  There will be some from all peoples.
  • They are from all tongues.  No language will be left out.

During the GREAT TRIBULATION there will be millions of people who will turn to Christ. As terrible as the sorrows and woes will be, the destruction and devastation will apparently stir people by the millions to turn to the Savior. What does this mean?  It means the greatest revival in the history of the world will take place during the tribulation.  Teeming millions are seen standing before the throne of God in heaven.  We will see that they will come out of the Tribulation period here on earth.  So the answer to the question, “will people be saved during the tribulation period?,” is a re-sounding “YES!”; there will be people saved during these terrible times on earth.

This means a wonderful truth; God NEVER shuts the door against anyone who truly wants to be saved.

“And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven”  (Matthew 8:11, KJV).

“For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved” (Romans 10:13, KJV).

“Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth” (I Timothy 2:4, KJV).

“And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation;” (Revelation 5:9, KJV).

“After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands;” (Revelation 7:9, KJV).

“These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins.  These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth.  These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb. And in their mouth was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God” (Revelation 14:4-5, KJV).

“And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying, Alleluia: for the Lord God omnipotent  reigneth.  Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready” (Revelation 19:6-7, KJV).

Revelation 7:9-10 –  Throne, God’s: there is the glorious position of the numberless multitude.  Notice some facts given about them.

  1. They stand before the Throne of God and before the Lamb, the Lord Jesus Christ. They have the most glorious of privileges:
  • to be near God and Christ.
  • to be face to face with God and Christ.
  • to be honored with the very presence of God and Christ.
  • to know God and Christ in all Their fullness and being.
  1. They are clothed with white robes. This means they have been made pure and free from all blemishes of sin and from all the corruption of the world — all by the righteousness of Jesus Christ.  It means they have been perfected and stand before God perfected.  (adapted from The White Robe of Righteousness – The Preachers Outline & Sermon Bible, PAGE 119, Revelation study).

The White Robes are:

  • They are a sign of righteousness through Christ.
  • They are a sign of being made free from the defilement and smut of sin through Christ.
  • They are a sign of the victory over sin, death, and judgment through Christ.
  • They are a sign of being perfected forever through Christ.
  • They are a sign of being a heavenly creature, of having the glorious privilege of living forever in the presence of God through Christ.
  1. They hold palm branches in their hands. The palms are symbols of celebration, triumph, victory, deliverance, and joy.  The redeemed stand before God celebrate their triumph over the terrible tribulation and the sin, evil, death, and corruption of the world.
  • They celebrate their victory in Christ.
  • They celebrate their deliverance in Christ.
  • They celebrate their joy in Christ.
  1. They shout praises for their salvation. Note what it is they shout:

“Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb” (v.10, KJV).

They praise God for salvation.  They praise God…

  • because God has saved and delivered them through the great trials upon earth.
  • because God has given them the power to believe and to endure to the end.
  • because God has accepted them.
  • because God has given them the glorious privilege of His presence.
  • because God has completed their salvation, perfected them forever and ever with His glory.

William Barclay has a statement about this point that is a dynamic challenge to us.  His words should stir us to endure any trial or temptation, no matter how severe:

“God is the great savior, the great rescuer, the great deliverer of His people.  And the deliverance which God gives is the greatest deliverance of all, for it is not the deliverance of escape; it is the deliverance of conquest.  It is not the deliverance which saves a man from trouble, it is the deliverance which brings a man triumphantly through trouble.  It does not make life easy, but it certainly makes life great.  It is not part of the Christian hope to look for a life in which a man is saved from all trouble and distress; the Christian hope is that a man in Christ can endure any kind of trouble and distress, remain erect all through them, and come out to glory on the other side” (The Revelation of John, Vol 2.  “The Daily Study Bible” Philadelphia, PA: The Westminster Press, 1959, p. 32).

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16, KJV). 

“For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Romans 6:23, KJV).

“He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?” (Romans 8:32, KJV).

“Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift” (2 Corinthians 9:15, KJV).

“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:” (Ephesians 2:8, KJV).

“For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world” (Titus 2:11-12).

“By him therefore lets us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name” (Hebrews 13:15).

“But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light:” (I Peter 2:9).

Revelation 7:11-12   Angels – Elders – Four Living Creatures. 

These are the companions of the numberless multitude.  This is a picture of all those who stand before the throne of God with the numberless multitude.  It is the picture of wave after wave of different beings standing in circles before the throne of God.

  • The outer circle is the angels.  Note that they surround or encircle the throne.
  • Next come the twenty-four elders.
  • Then there are the four living creatures who stand at the four corners of the throne.
  • Finally, as we have seen, there is the numberless multitude of believers who stand face to face with the throne of God and the Lamb.

The numberless multitude has just sung their praises to God for His great salvation.  When they do, the rest of the heavenly beings fall down before the throne on their faces and worship God.

  1. They praise God for His BLESSING. Every good and perfect     gift comes from God.  These heavenly beings acknowledge   this fact and bless God’s name for it.
  2. They praise God for His GLORY. God is glorious, the most glorious Person in all the universe.  He is so glorious that His glory outshines the sun.  It is the light of His glory that will provide the light of heaven.  God is to be praised for the perfection of His glory.  But note:  God shares His glory with His creatures.  Every creature in heaven is given and perfected in glory.  God is to be praised for the gift of His glory as well as for His own glory.
  3. They praise God for His WISDOM. God is the Supreme and majestic intelligence of the universe. He is omniscient, possessing all intelligence and perfect intelligence.  It is God who planned creation and all the worlds and creatures of all dimensions whoever they are.  It is God who planned salvation and redemption through His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ.  It is God who gave the knowledge to work all things out for good.  He is to be praised for His wisdom.
  4. They offer THANKSGIVING to God. They thank Him for creation, life, salvation, redemption, and for everything else.  Again, they know that every good and perfect gift came from Him.
  5. They praise God for His HONOR. God is the Supreme and Majestic Being of the universe.  There is none like Him.  In addition, God is faithful and true.  He never fails to keep His Word and promises, nor to do what is best.  He is perfection of honor and truth and trustworthiness.  Therefore, God’s HONOR IS TO BE PRAISED.
  6. They praise God for His POWER. God is the supreme and Majestic Force of the universe.  He is the Force that created the universe and sustains and holds it together, the Force that is moving it toward its destined end.  In addition, God is the Supreme Force that works out the salvation and redemption of man, the Force that works out all things for good to those who love Him.  He is the Supreme Power who oversees our lives and delivers us from evil, death, and corruption.  Therefore, God is praised for His power.
  7. They praise God for His MIGHT AND STRENGTH. God is so strong; He never tires or becomes weary.  There is no weakness in Him whatsoever.  God is so strong that He is always able to help any of His creatures.  Anyone can approach God anytime for strength and receive His help.  God never fails; He possesses perfect strength and shall possess it forever and ever.  Therefore, God’s strength is praised.

The praise of heavenly beings is an EXAMPLE FOR US.  Scripture is clear; we are always to be thanking and praising God.

“By Him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name” (Hebrews 13:15).

“But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light:” (1 Peter 2:9).

“For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, WHICH ARE GOD’S” (I Corinthians 6:20).

“Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet [qualified, fit] to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light:” (Colossians 1:12).

“And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also you are called in one body; and be ye thankful” (Colossians 3:15).

“In very thing give thanks: for this is the WILL OF GOD IN CHRIST JESUS CONCERNING YOU” (I Thessalonians 5:18).

“Sing praises to the LORD, which dwelleth in Zion: declare among the people his doings”  (Psalm 9:11).

“Let the people praise thee, O God; Let ALL the people praise thee” (Psalm 67:3).

Review this message and then record what you find to praise,and give thanks to God.  Make sure that you are truly saved.

See John 3:16 and also Romans 10:9-13.