Rev 10:5, 6
"And the angel
which I saw stand upon the sea and upon the earth lifted up his hand to heaven,
6 And sware by him that liveth for ever and ever, who created heaven, and the
things that therein are, and the earth, and the things that therein are, and the
sea, and the things which are therein, that there should be time no longer."
There are differences of
opinion as to whether this refers to the end of this time world or to the end of
the law covenant. I am still wrestling with the answer to this. However, my
current thinking is that it refers to the end of this time world. I currently
think this because of the use of the conjunction, but, in verse 7. The
conjunction, but, seems to set verse 7 and that which follows in contrast to
what is said in verses 5 and 6. Also verses 5 and 6 contrast the eternal God to
his timely creation. This natural creation of God has an end, but God does not
have an end. God lives forever and ever. God created all things and he upholds
all things. He set this time world in motion and determined the time of its
existence. Also He will conclude it. God's creation and his conclusion are not
by chance, but the working of an all powerful and all knowing eternal God.
While we do not know when that time shall be, we know that God knows exactly
when it will be and that the resurrection will be at his appointed time.
10:7 "But in the
days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the
mystery of God should be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the
Some have taken the above to
mean that when the seventh angel begins to sound that this time world will end,
and the resurrection will come. I do not believe that is the case.
The seventh angel is
mentioned three times in the book of Revelation. The other two times are as
1. Rev. 11:15 "And
the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The
kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his
Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever."
2. Rev. 16:17 "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."
Ref. 1 above says that when
the seventh angel sounds the kingdoms of this world will become the kingdoms of
our Lord, and of his Christ and that he will reign for ever. Since the time of
Christ, none of the natural kingdoms of this world have ever truly been
Christian kingdoms, including the United States. Furthermore, in the
resurrection, all natural kingdoms will cease and there will be no natural
kingdoms in the glory world. The reference to the kingdoms of this world is
consistent with Rev. 1:6 that states that God has made us kings and priests unto
God. The kingdoms are the individual kingdoms of each individual disciple of
Christ. It is here in these individual kingdoms of the believer that Christ
reigns forever and ever.
Ref. 2 above speaks of a
time of timely judgment of great Babylon. Obviously, even before
this was written, the nation of Babylon had ceased to exist. The great Babylon
was not a natural kingdom but a spiritual kingdom. As we go further into our
study of Revelation, we will find that great Babylon answered to the perverted
religious system of the Jews at that time. God's wrathful judgment of Judaism
took place around 70 A.D. with the destruction of Jerusalem.
Next, we examine the mystery
of God. The word, mystery, comes from the Greek word, musterion, and means a
secret. It is a secret that is known by some but not known by others. There
are about 18 references to the mystery of God in the New Testament. A sampling
of these verses follows:
1. Mk. 4:11
"And he said unto them, Unto you it is given to know the mystery of the
kingdom of God: but unto them that are
without, all these things are done in parables:"
2. Rom. 11:25 "For
I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye
should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to
Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in."
3. Rom. 16:25
"Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the
preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was
kept secret since the world began,"
4. 1 Cor. 2:7 "But
we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God
ordained before the world unto our glory: 8 Which none of the princes of this
world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of
5. Eph. 1:9
"Having made known unto us the mystery of his will, according to his good
pleasure which he hath purposed in himself:"
6. Eph. 3:3
"How that by revelation he made known unto me the mystery; (as I wrote afore in
few words, 4 Whereby, when ye read, ye may understand my knowledge in the
mystery of Christ) 5 Which in other ages was not made known unto the sons
of men, as it is now revealed unto his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit;
6 That the Gentiles should be fellowheirs, and of the same body, and
partakers of his promise in Christ by the gospel: 7 Whereof I was made a
minister, according to the gift of the grace of God given unto me by the
effectual working of his power."
7. Eph. 3: 9 And
to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the
beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus
Christ: 10 To the intent that now unto the principalities and powers in
heavenly places might be known by the church the manifold wisdom of God, 11
According to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord:"
8. Eph. 6:19
"And for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth
boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel,"
9. Col. 1:26
"Even the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but now is
made manifest to his saints: 27 To whom God would make known what is the riches
of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the
hope of glory:"
10. Col. 4:3
"Withal praying also for us, that God would open unto us a door of utterance, to
speak the mystery of Christ, for which I am also in bonds:"
11. 1 Tim. 3:16
"And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in
the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the
Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory."
As can be seen by a perusal
of the above the mystery of God is the gospel of the kingdom of
God and all that it entails.
The gospel is presented unto us in the canon of scriptures being revealed to us
in the New Testament. When the seventh angel began to sound the canon of
scripture was completed and the mystery finished or completed. This is
consistent with what we read in Rev. 8:2 "And I saw the seven angels which
stood before God; and to them were given seven trumpets." In our notes on
this verse we compared the use of the trumpets in the scriptures to the gospel
of Jesus Christ. The angels of course refer to the gospel messengers who
delivered the gospel to us. Seven is the bible number associated with
completion teaching us that with the seventh angel the canon of scripture was
completed and we have the complete gospel message,
Rev 10:8-11 "And the voice
which I heard from heaven spake unto me again, and said, Go and take the little
book which is open in the hand of the angel which standeth upon the sea and upon
the earth. 9 And I went unto the angel, and said unto him, Give me the
little book. And he said unto me, Take it, and eat it up; and it shall make thy
belly bitter, but it shall be in thy mouth sweet as honey. 10 And I took
the little book out of the angel's hand, and ate it up; and it was in my mouth
sweet as honey: and as soon as I had eaten it, my belly was bitter. 11
And he said unto me, Thou must prophesy again before many peoples, and nations,
and tongues, and kings."
Some things we eat are sweet
to the taste, but in the digestive system cause a stomachache. Likewise, this
is true in a spiritual sense as well. Sin can be eaten as a sweet morsel but
the after effects can be extremely bitter. Sometimes drinking a little wine can
turn into drunkenness. In David's case taking a glance at a woman bathing
turned into adultery and had a profoundly bitter effect on his life. Jacob told
a little lie to his father, Isaac, in order to get a blessing and it ended up
separating him from the presence of his father and mother for the remainder of
Similarly, there are
religious things that can seem quite to be desired at first glance, but the
fruit of it is extremely bitter. John saw Mystery Babylon the Great and at
first marveled at her. However, the angel showed John the great wickedness of
that religious system.
The above passage also
teaches us that the things that apply to the Lord's people also apply to the
preacher. The scriptures say "there is a way which seemeth right unto a man,
but the end thereof are the ways of death." The things that we warn the Lord's
people about also apply to us. Sometimes our understanding of things is sweet,
but the application of those things in our lives becomes bitter because our
flesh rebels against it.
Often things that look good
are bad. The false prophet appears as a sheep. Satan transforms himself into
an angel of righteousness. His ministers transform themselves into ministers of
righteousness. He calls his doctrine the gospel of Christ. His assembly calls
itself the church of Christ. He disguises his
word as a bible.
The apostle was to prophesy
before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings. This prospect alone
is sweet to the preacher, but the things that we sometimes have to preach are
bitter. We would love to preach sweet things that are sweet both to the taste
and to the stomach. That is, we love to preach about what God has done for us
in giving us eternal life, and saving us from our sins, and the hope of the
resurrection. However, in order to preach the whole counsel of God, we must
warn people of things we sometimes would rather not speak about. Sometimes we
must warn them of their ungodly ways and their need to repent. Sometimes we
must warn them of the consequences of ungodly lifestyles and ungodly practices
in their lives.