Setting the Sights and
Considering the Contours
This World's Mistress,
Marriage of the Lamb,
Mop-Up and Millenium
Revelation 19 & Co.
i) The Forceful Woman of the World goes - Rev. 18:9-19:6 (cf. 17:15-17,18).
She has provided as the spiritual hostess, mistress and desire of the world, or much of it, just that panache, display, cruelty in power and zest for glory in her own right (cf. SMR pp. 912ff.), which has appeal to the benighted, thrill for the feverish, hope for the this-worldly and expectation of strength in it, for those whose trust is in the visible, in the glory that man can create, or more often, feverishly imagines to be within his power. Often does man visit her.
Always a spiritual harridan, she has deceived kings, slaughtered saints and had a reign on the beast: now that her end has come, her very city, Rome (17:9) is doomed, her power despoiled, and the beast blights her. Divinely deemed "the great harlot" (19:2), "who corrupted the earth with her fornication", so that God "avenged on her the blood of His servants shed by her", picking up from Revelation 17:4, where she is called "the mother of harlots", she is a massive slayer of saints, indeed "drunk with the blood of the saints", and spreader of "the abominations of the earth" (17:5-6).
The mother of harlots in other words, begets more of them, in her own spirit and temper and trade, and such are Ignorance, by which for centuries she sought to REMOVE the knowledge of the Bible (cf. Cook and Martin's Story of the Light that Never Went Out, which details many such things in Britain in particular), the Bishop of London even seeking to quash Tyndale's English translation by burning it in quantities, and in so doing, giving the money which enabled him, indirectly, to pay for and manufacture many more, duly imported. On this, see Psalm 119:13, 20.
Ignorance allowed much confusion and concoction of evils, religious cocktails and tales, the very stuff of 'harlotry', sin habitually using ignorance, wilful or otherwise, to dash the truth; and what more critical in truth, than the Gospel! (cf. II Cor. 11, Galatians 1). Another child of the mother of harlots is Total Subjection as a condition for spiritual life, like a harlot who demands fealty to herself at all cost; and this has been a major feature of the Jesuits, relative to the papacy, and an implicit feature of the Unam Sanctam which asserts that "it is altogether necessary to salvation for every creature to be subject to the Roman pontiff."
You CANNOT of course serve two masters (Matthew 5:24), and one being God with the provision of personal satisfaction for sin, and the other but a human creature and sinful, they are disparate to the point of infinity. There is, said Christ, but ONE, and no one else may have a place (Matthew 23:8-10, Proverbs 30:6), and the mastery is written in its Gospel and its revelation, not changeable in the least (Galatians 1, Revelation 22), or subject to any addition.
There being only ONE master and teacher, so that NONE may so much as spiritually be called 'father' (Matthew 23:8-10), this sort of ADDITION is an alternative god, so that it draws like a harlot, those who mix their 'marriage' to the Lamb with a carriage with the papacy, which not being God, constitutes a parallel to the Baals of old, who were 'lords' also. Other such children of harlotry would be elements such as Equivocation, famous Jesuit principle (contra Colossians 3:9), where truth is not the criterion but the objective is deemed to determine morality; and this begets more like it in other places, such as the Liberals who defiled the Bible and whose slithery tongue misled many churches, having done strong service in a similar cause!
Visions of angels (cf. the prohibition in Colossians 2:18, of such fealty, such trembling religious acceptance) are another way of intruding into the word of God, and the Mormons show an affiliation to this with Moroni, no less than does Rome with her visions. This is another child of the temper of Rome. Other christs, such as that in the Koran, the radicality of Liberalism, Neo-Orthodoxy, constructions imagined by man and not wrought from the historical record, christs without deity, or variable gods, these too are linked.
Such is her motherhood and such are some of her spawn, incorporated in the mystery of Babylon, of which Rome is the centre and 'mother', Babylon itself the ancient exemplar (cf. SMR pp. 946ff., 729, 1032-1088H).
ii) The Marriage of the Lamb - Rev. 19:7-10 comes.
By contrast, we observe in 19:10 the spirit of authenticity - the angel who speaks to John is not the Lamb: for it is not functionaries, but the Lord alone who is to be worshipped, and Christ is Lord. His will, word and ways, wisdom are immutable, beautiful, eternal. Do not worship ME, says the exalted angel, for "the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy". Yet as God multiplied visions of truth (Hosea 12:10), so man has multiplied ways of avoiding Him. Wafers, glasses, angels, books, canons of corrupt churches or States, meditations - they vie for a following.
Yet there is no way but Jesus Christ (John 14:6), and there is NO OTHER NAME of access (Acts 4:11-12). The cut-off is simple, eternal and clear. “WORSHIP GOD,” says the angel, forbidding John to worship him, “for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.” The testimony of truth is all about Jesus, who is the truth, and the very spirit of it focusses Him, and none other. ONLY Christ IN all creation can be worshipped, since He created it! He came into it, as an author into a book (Colossians 1:15ff.) Other names (cf. Acts 4:11-12) are an index of spiritual harlotry, and such pre-occupations are for the children of Babylon.
If you want another name, you must not call it the same, but what it actually is; and if you want another governor, guidance, perspective, spirit, gospel or grace, yes or disgrace, or to add one to the Master, then you must confess it (Matthew 23:8-10, Luke 9:22-26).
Confusion has long been the devil's goad to collapse, and misnaming has been a very tradition of inveiglement, a source of seduction and Te Deum to what is not the Trinity. To worship ANYTHING or give obedience as to GOD to ANYONE not God, but man masquerading his mouth (II Cor. 11) or imposing his ultra-infra-sub or other varieties of word on the faithful, is to have the daring to have public marriage with a seducer, even while ostensibly under the roof of the first husband.
It is an unqualified corruption and an unthinkable double-image, invented without ocular defect, by the mind that has appetite for it. If you want to add to the word of God (Proverbs 30:6, Galatians 1, Revelation 22), then you subtract from fealty to Him; for anyone can change a testimony by his own desire, even in one word, and much more in hundreds of thousands given power to contain the original!
This is the very spirit of Babylon (cf. *2 below), vastly impudent, wholly impious, rancorously rebellious, with open face performing what the Lord by His own record, detests; and it is found in ALL religions which dare to present some christ of their own choosing, whether that of Islam, Mormonism, Romanism, or of any leader whose word constitutes the final authority along with the Bible, some other authority, book, canon, law, counsel, not wholly derivable from the Bible and but fancy beyond it, below it, like a companion, fulfilling the intent not the Spirit of God, but the spirit of rebellion.
The definitive word of God Himself, this judges (John 12:48-50, Galatians 1:6-9), and it is useless to subject oneself to the thoughts of man; for this is not merely lèse-majesté, but self-deceit (II Timothy 4), and one foretold to blossom like weeds in a rose-garden. Nor does the word of God come at the will of man, for it came by the power of the Spirit of God (II Peter 1:19ff.), before the defining face of Jesus Christ (I Peter 1), and is as open to addition as a knife that cuts, or to subtraction as is no money when you wish to purchase (Revelation 22:18ff.). Moreover, you could as well reconstruct a 'christ' from what has not known Him, as did the apostles, as make any other idol, dependent not on empirical, historical reality, but the testimony of one mind, one psychic phenomenon, one 'visit' from whatever source to the mind of man!
A 'christ' left for centuries for his definition, after the event of His coming: this is not the one predicted to die around AD 30 by Daniel, who died then, and who rose with the redemption for which He paid. God did not send the foretold Saviour to save freely without works (Isaiah 55, 27) in order to have Him hidden, the criterion of truth and the Word of God, in some maze of competing liberals, Moslems, other sects, imaginers, conceivers.
Christ was begotten of a virgin as foretold (Matthew 1 cf. SMR pp. 770ff.), and not of the mind or spirit of man. He did not present Himself, a light to the Gentiles (Isaiah 42:6, 49:6), or a commander, witness and a leader (Isaiah 55:4), in order to be led, made, concocted, invented in the spirit of a man whom He came to save! Far less was He sent that His word and portrait should be annulled, replaced; for this is precisely that making of a false Christ, which He foretold as something to become a popular pursuit *1A , which it has, from Muhammad to Barth , from Arius to the various modern radical, and innovative, idolatrous misconstructions.
False prophets are foretold - these may make false christs as part of their trade and occupation. Both are to abound (Matthew 24:24). The time would come, said Paul, when people could not STAND sound doctrine and they would patronise teachers to satiate their restless desire to avoid the truth (II Timothy 4 cf. II Peter 2, and II Timothy 3 as to the moral and spiritual RESULTS!). All this has happened, like a fever, and the temperature on this earth is rising! There is a far more dangerous moribund effect of these things, than any Greenhouse Effect.
What more abundant in this last century, than sects, prophets without rational or sustainable base, ideas from Jonesville to angels, from bread to guns, as the means! It is costing the earth, and the earth cannot pay. It is only Christ who can pay, and the payment although adequate for all, has no tender to the unrepentant, the creators of their Creator, the manufacturers of christs at call!
Anyone can think up, blink or wink up a christ, just as humanists blink their eyes and behold a vision which leads to the death of millions, as with Marx; but to DO what has to be done is as different from this as forecast and fulfilment from machination, as performance from dream. It is where the effect is, the narrative is sustained by events, the preliminaries attest what it will be, and none can overwhelm it, even when with such notice, it arrives, it is there that the eyes look, the mind travels and the spirit finds solace. Not wars to force, but words and works to confirm: this is the need, abundantly fulfilled in the whole scope of history only once, except in the preliminaries of prophecy which make that road one long built, and at last a four-lane highway of holiness.
Jesus Christ, the Messiah dying at the date predicted by Daniel (Highway of Holiness Ch. 4) was not a leader to the Gentiles in order that Gentiles should make Him, and so lead Him where they would, whether in a contradictory book or forbidden piece of bread, as if suicide not crucifixion had been the means of His death, and the Last Supper had for ever removed all hope of dying for sin on the Cross (Galatians 6:14)!
There is JUST ONE Christ who fulfilled all the predictions of the Old Testament prophets who, as Muhammad rightly said, were of God, and whose definition of God is not left undefined, for man to meddle with, muddle or recast (Isaiah 59:21). It is He who being God, is God the sent from God the Sender, all of one trinity (Isaiah 48:16), the One who being pierced, is yet the LORD! (Zechariah 12:10), who is addressed as God, whose throne is His own (Psalm 40), and who, with God the only Saviour (Isaiah 43:10-11), is yet Saviour and the One who PAYS, and so saves (Isaiah 53), Himself.
To add or modify this is pure idolatry.
Small wonder John has no small challenge to those who would mutate the Christ!
Add, says John in the Spirit of God, to these THINGS and God has something to add to you for your action. It is an arrogance unthinkable, a Babylonian abomination, a part of that 'mystery Babylon' which moving like a fire through the ages, from the literal Babylon, comes as in Revelation 17 as the end roars into sight, to the contemporary face of the city of the seven hills, which, a very mother of harlots, to use the phrase given in the word of God, will be forsaken in spirit and in location (Revelation 17:15, 18:1ff.).
What says Isaiah 2:6ff. of such attitudes? It is this:
"For Thou hast abandoned Thy people, the house of Jacob, because they are filled with influences from the East, and they are soothsayers like the Philistines, and they strike bargains with the children of foreigners..." (NASV).
Not only do such seducers add in this mode, spirit and adventure, but they even flatly contradict what is written, multiply provided, emphatically declared in the Bible, and call it 'interpretation' which is rejection, as if confusion were king, and dust were clear air. But what does the Lord say to Israel when it did such things, in a word to all who listen, concerning His will, ways and witness ? It may be seen from Isaiah 2:12ff.).
"For the Lord of hosts will have a day of reckoning against everyone who is proud and lofty, and against everyone who is lifted up, that he may be abased...and the pride of man will be humbled, and the loftiness of man will be abased, and the LORD alone will be exalted in that day ... Stop regarding man whose breath is in his nostrils, for why should be be esteemed!" (NASV). For illustration, see SMR pp. 912ff.).
A child is out of place when it comes to wielding the blacksmith's hammer, and how much more a rebel when it comes to the word of God, immutable, intractable, unnegotiable, as insusceptible to addition as income once made when the time is past, to subtraction as spending already done! (Jeremiah 23:23-31).
iii) The Fine Linen definitive in lustre.
It is this distinctive and definitive linen which is present in the marriage; and following this, it is also pressent in the host at the advent of the Lord of Lords, coming once more to earth, this time to rule (cf. I Thessalonians 3:13). He comes with His saints, and it is this clean and white linen which marks out the wedding participants. Having come, He acts! The ensuing Divine Response to the lords of sin on earth is now categorical in action as before in word (Rev. 19:8,14ff.).
This advent of Christ, the Messianic King is in a way like a Wedding Reception, the aftermath of the wedding: but among those to whom He comes on earth, there is much mourning! (Revelation 1:7)! They never attended the wedding, being occupied with other alliances.
Imagine if on some excursion such as that much earlier of Queen Elizabeth in her younger days, to Australia, there had been lamentation, weeping, sorrow, mourning to greet her ? That might be so if she had come in judgment, and the people had been rebels. Here it is so, with the Messiah!
Rebellion against God means to refuse His words, His laws, His commands, perhaps to seek to make another god and worship it, calling it by the same name or not, according to fancy and preference, and the wedding reception is not for those who rejoice, but for those to whom the participants come with the Lord Himself, long absent from light, now being compelled to face it, as truth has become manifest, and its very face now speaks.
iv) The Five Names of the Lord Jesus Christ appear (Revelation 19:12-16).
These are heralded, and there is one more cited, this one known only to Himself, since God can be regulated and manipulated by none, inviolable, intractable, true, The five are Faithful and True, Lord of Lords and King of Kings, the Word of God. So great is the Lord that His very Word is personal, and lives for ever.
No other Lord can come from man, since Christ alone came down from heaven as man, to bring man to God. No other king can rule man, since only God knows the heart (Jeremiah 17:8-9). No other word can bring mandate to man, manufactured of God as he is, to secure the station of salvation and enable the correspondence of faith and reality, that Christ brings (Romans 11). None other is so faithful and true, for no one else having all power, and having all the treasures of wisdom, can speak with consistent realism, and bring to pass insistent works of dynamism, which none can void. The sword in His hand in Revelation 19, is that of supreme power, and the result is that all the power this world and its ways, wit and words have to offer, is inconsequential. When it is a question of power, and love has had its way, mercy its focus, then the end is short!
So is it in Revelation 19!
v) The End of the Spiritual Fraud practised for millenia, is exposed.
Confronted at the conclusion, it looks as it has always been: cheap - Rev. 19:19-21; but its cost and payment is dear. The vanity of urbanity is here shown, as the very birds devour the protoplasmic remnants of the war on God which at last (Rev. 19:19) became as explicit as it really is, more normally hiding in the implicit. There is however nothing implicit about confessing the Lord Jesus Christ and not being ashamed of Him, or the result of denial of His deity, His redemption and His claims on man (Luke 9:26), or preferring your own life to the life which comes spiritually from God, as first physically. Refusing birth means morbid post-mature problems; and neglecting the new birth can mean a lingering death, called life but actually a mere externality denying its point (Matthew 16:24ff.).
vi) The Millenial Demonstration with the General Resurrection - 20:1-6, now are seen.
These appear, with bondage bonded! The wonder of divine rule appears (as in Isaiah 11, 65, Psalm 72); and 20:4 has a message for those to be resurrected; for here are all whose worship has been of the Lord, and not of the bestial building which this world loves (cf. I Thessalonians 4, Revelation 7), some beheaded, but all in one way or another, in one day or its ilk, refusing the mark of the beast in its exemplar or its many and various prototypes, that primacy of this world, of its powers and precepts, its conditions and its commands, having preferred to be in alliance instead, with the power of God and the grace of His salvation, which nothing can tear from their hearts.
vii) The Revolt that Terminates Global History fires up.
This makes its last yearning endeavour to supplant God - 20:7-10. It fails and heaven and earth now removed (20:11), we see the Judgment sit. Sin cost the earth!
WHY does it cost the earth ? If you were given an inheritance of one million dollars and bought five expensive sports cars and a small aeroplane, and refused to service them all, and then set out to wallow in world tours, doubtless it would in the end cost the bank bulk. Is it surprising then when people given the grace of life and the power of salvation, receive the one and neglect the other, refusing and rejecting with superior smile or secret mockery, marvelling at the folly of those who prize and rejoice in the gift which they merely toss away as if it were never of value and could not even be held in the hand, and then find the cost is irrevocable.
Their inheritance is lost. It will never be regained. So when this earth, filled with wonders of creation, beauties inconceivable until seen, interactive devices of majestic splendour, lavish lashings of mind and splendid sanctions to secure the spirit of man, is smitten with man's voluntary sin, often seduced into involuntary sin as character is defiled, destroyed, depressed, becoming like wrack, begins to receive its come-uppance, the mocking illustrations of sin whether in snake or spider, travelling garbage collectors in black feathers or tearing wolves of the sea with white teeth and insatiable appetite, squalid opportunists like wasps with aphids, wily foxes that mimic their human counterparts and whirl-winds to show the ultimate inadequacy of the ultimate human contrivances for safety, is it not time to repent ? Not at all, says the world, it is time to become cleverer.
When their cleverness oppress the earth, till like Shanghai, its very boisterous growth is enough to make the lungs mutiny, what then ? Then they proceed as if death were an illusion and human life were a passing shadow. When it begins to look more and more like just that, as terrorists worship death and display it for others in abundance, adding their own distorted and tormented corpses like a down-payment for hell, is it still time to ignore the only security life has, in its author ?
Not at all, they then dream on in their so-called evolution, that unwinding of what is not wound, and that development of what is not there, calling need the father of fact, as if the millions who die for lack of food had only to establish for the mindless mind of 'nature', a need and they would be fed!
Myths multiply*1, as foretold in II Timothy 4:1ff., and man slays man as if to capture some development to make better, what is fiendish in itself, with increasing dynamic, and do they then repent ? Not at all, they become more and more grossly self-preoccupied, and find newer ways of becoming dross with life attached, like a house built on a cess-pool, the latter created as a garden for the surrounding beauty.
Thus is it in this tidying up of the end for man on earth.
When the beast is sentenced and the false prophet with him, when the always
nugatory nothings of their persuasive propagandas lie dead, and the
resurrection is past, what does the devil decide on ? and who are those who
implement his decisions to the best of their poor, lost lives ?
Is it not precisely those who, surrounded with the blessed and noble rule of Christ in person, returned to this earth so that "the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of God as the waters cover the sea" (Habakkuk 2:14), yet seek to scorn the truth and secure their own destiny, though the devil take not only the hindmost but the foremost of this deluded lot, ungrateful for ever, always the subject of vain ambition of a racial kind, the tormented troop of the deluded ? Arising to overturn the rule of the Lord, they find that infinite power is not even measured in finite terms, and infinite patience does not extend to the point that man, who in weakness has limits, is forever to be radically racially infested with madness, forlorn lusts of the mind and scattered desires of the severed spirit. They fail.
The devil, that proud and arrogant, haughty and high-minded spirit, father of lies, maker of myths, machinating maladies and seeking heights from the depths chosen, inveterate in malice, filled with self-affirmation, self-belief and self-conceit, as if to affirm what is made would made one more than the Maker, or to place down the fist in anger made the ground to appear, creation to arise, destiny to repent of itself and do what it was told by this other prince, this evil leader: he goes to his appointed place.
All that avarice and pretence could possibly construct, the devil has deeply invaded; and his aims and those of all his flock being now revealed by history, that book, alike record of the flames of faith and the fires of godliness, for God makes his servants a flame - is closed.
As to image, the files are complete.
As to literal fact, the created structure for the tests, that universe, product of the Author of prodigies, shaken already (Hebrews 12:25-28), is disbanded now. Indeed, it departs with a roar (II Peter 3), echo of that same prodigious energy, enshrined in matter, splendid in mind, soaring in spirit, which created man and his astral heights.
It is over. Love has sought to the uttermost, grace has been poured forth to the absolute, mercy has spoken in absolute terms, the very source of life becoming man in order to transfer the assets of righteousness to man, and those of sin to Himself, and He being infinite, is no less for it. The very spirit of man would fail (Isaiah 57:15), being finite, in infinite address, so in infinity the God of all grace, love and comfort, pity and power has known before the worlds were made, who would in fact be His, and none is lost, nor is anything that love might find, unfound, nor is any foundling brought home whose home in the uttermost resources of his spirit as known to God, is alien to the end.
How careful therefore must any one be who, being brought near to God, hardens the heart, with the savour of mercy in his nostrils, deems it a stench, or who calls the aroma of imputed righteousness a cow-yard atmosphere; for while God knows from the first, His love works to the last! (Isaiah 55). Branding for beauty the desire of the alien heart, branding not beauty becomes the construction of destiny, foreknown but well worked out to the uttermost point by pity, and this tossed autonomously aside, then in judgment.
Indeed, now has this time gone, and the millenium past, the very terminal events have soared into existence, according to the mind of God, and the day of judgment.
The test is now concluded, and the heaven and earth depart, their being no place found for them (Revelation 20:. Their day is done, like school when you leave at matriculation. It is over. There is no more place for it; and since this is not for the individual alone, as the time for the race ends and the clock strikes, but not for the end of the examination alone, but even for the human occupation of this earth of wonder by man, there is no more earth and heavens. With a loud noise and intense heat, II Peter 3 adds, they are gone as in Revelation 20:11.
Thus does obstinate refusal of light end not only in darkness but in devilish devices, sundered by judgment itself (20:10,13-14). What torment lies in truth when it is reviled, and what pangs of the created conscience vie with time for place, when light has shone into inveterate darkness and judgment has sat!
But let us to the brilliance of Light, real, surreal, physical, spiritual, moral and rejoice that it is personal, as God is who is that light! (John 1:5, Psalm 27:1, James 1:17, Psalm 36:9, 97:11).
Fine Linen Rev. 19:8,14 cf. 7:13-14
In Revelation 7 we have already seen that the whiteness of this costume has a reason: it is washed in the blood of the Lamb (7:14), more potent cleansing than any, adequate in all things, free and available without impediment, once repentance and faith operate (Romans 3:23ff.). It is this very fine linen, the righteousness of God Himself, clothing the saints (cf. Isaiah 61:10), which now gleams and glisters, white and bright, impacting as the Lord terminates the rebellion of the Ages (Revelation 19:14ff., cf. Psalm 2).
The Authorised version translates well this fine linen conspectus, it being the 'righteousnesses of the saints', that of the one and that of the other, as in a vast assemblage as seen in Revelation 7. While the term could mean 'righteous acts', it is used in Romans 5:16 to means imputed or reckoned or declared righteousness, like a judicial sentence of justification. The word has also this meaning, and it is to be taken in view of the context in the book of Revelation. It is not a congratulatory whiteness as if I John 1:7 -8 had not been written, and all had not sinned (Romans 6:;23), but it is a washed whiteness, the only kind that passes in heaven, as in Revelation 7 expressly. It is the garb which is placed on the 'bride' by the bride-groom, and in Isaiah 61:10 it is seen to be the gift that HE makes, and in nothing anything to do with the attainments of the bride.
Indeed, there also, it is seen that just as the bridegroom, the Lord, has covered the bride, His believing and saved family, with the garments of salvation, so has He also covered her with the robe of righteousness. It is in His gift and HE gives it; and as David puts it in Psalm 71, he will speak of the Lord's own righteousness, and of HIS only! It is only when realism rules that you are dressed. Otherwise, spiritually you remain naked (as in Revelation 3:17), and the cover lacking is not merely that of seemliness and warmth, it is that to protect against the indictments of sin and the judgment of the wrath of God.
Fine Word Rev. 19:10
The fear of the Lord is present in the emphasis on not worshipping the informant, however exalted, for THE TESTIMONY OF JESUS IS THE SPIRIT OF PROPHECY. That is, the very essence and nature, the inspiration and the dynamic of prophecy has as its key and foundation, its feature and its copestone, one great feature, the testimony of Jesus; for this is where the washing of the robes occurs, whence the Light comes from and here the Temple is to be found! It is to be found in the Lord and the Lamb, one God (21:22, 5:8ff., 2:8, Isaiah 44:6, 45:18, 43:10-11, Psalm 96:5). As in John 1:1, grammar requires that the subject lack the article, to show which it is in such a case, so that it reads, "God was the word", inverted for emphasis.
As Isaiah 43:10-11 shows, before God was no God formed, no, no, no god was formed, for not even in His domain, an EL, that is, one mighty, was there any, and there will be none after Him. Time before and after is evacuated of any such thing, and as to God, of gods, He knows not any; and there is among all the gods, no other (Isaiah 45:18,22); for all the gods of the nations are 'idols' as Psalm 96 declares. One God is there and HIM ONLY are you to serve, as Christ told Satan (Matthew 4).
Serving false gods, that is anything deemed worshipful other than your Creator (Isaiah 45:12) is the most transparent foolishness. What is the good of using your inbuilt worship instinct on something not worthy of worship, not ultimate, some created kind, imaginary or concrete! You might as well use your food-eating instinct to attack crockery, as indeed one Jesuit taught to obey his human general, by report, was about to set about doing, first breaking it up.
Finery Defiled Rev. 19:2,20-21,20:10
The false prophet and the beast, with the devil, are dispatched, and those with the mark of the beast are thrust through with light, as darkness is when it must go! Revelation 16:13ff. has already shown us the evil spirit emanating from the false prophet, the beast and the devil. It comes out of the mouth of the former two, as in the preaching of Communism*2, and of all false religious prophets, whose words are intoxicating wine to the deluded, who drink deep, and find the bottom.
unite errors, try to swallow up truth,
create divisions because of men, slight God,
debase the Cross,
become subservient to death, seek to rupture the resurrection,
proceed by prevarication and live light-free, by their wits, which being
dimmed by sin,
With the devil, these are arch-enemies of the human race. Thus the sources, beast, devil and false prophet, in unholly alliance against God with their forces (at war with God - Revelation 19:19) end with their inflamed passions under just judgment. The devil after a millenium in which his vicious deceits no more give deadly dynamism to the misled nations (20:3), tries again, only to find his own level, base beyond vision! (as in vii above). In all denial of truth, is torment; lies do not sit well in the light, nor does darkness on man or spirit.
Rev. 19:11-12,16 cf. 5:13, 21:22:23, 22:1
The Lamb is the Temple and the Light, worshipped forever is the one Trinity. Beginning and end of creation, eternal Redeemer of His people (Hebrews 9:12), His is the deity, for there is no other, nor ever will be. Mistaken identities have plagued the globe, but then it ought not to be too difficult to discern between the infinite and the finite, the Redeemer and the redeemed, Creator and creation, between the Source and Security, the ruin of rebellion and the rejoicing of spiritual surrender to the sublime deity.
When you are in Him, then the contained, controlled, ordered sequence of events such as we see here, and have seen these millennia, has much challenge, but no doubt; and if there are rapids to course, there is a swift Saviour to guide; and if the end is to come, then it is well ended that goes, and well made that comes.
Faithful and True is the name of the Lord, and finding this out is better than all discoveries, sweeter than all content, being an exercise in truth and a finding in life, abundant despite a bubbling world, and eternal despite this world's demise. Finding the truth of His promises, of His premises, the strength of His presence and the power of abiding in Him with joy is a treasure in life.
Revelation 21:3-5 points to the new order, not of man, but in the Lord, for new people, in Christ.
I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, “Behold, the tabernacle of God is
with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people.
God Himself will be with them and be their God.
And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes;
there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying.
There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.”
Then He who sat on the throne said, ‘Behold, I make all things new.’ ”
Jesus Christ is not only the prime figure then, but now, for in Him and through Him is our salvation, justification and sustaining, as by the Spirit of God (John 14:26), He fulfils His Messianic commission, forsaking for a time the very form of God (Philippians 2) to take the form of man, so that many of mankind might take the place of children of God.
Revelation 22:17, accordingly, shows a continual accompaniment to the pale horrors of what is first dislocation and then severance from the Lord as the progressive program unfolds, which shows the full extent of divorce proceedings, when even ransom is too little, and rebellion shakes its head like a horse's mane, in pride.
"The Spirit and the Bride say,
'Come!' And let him who hears say 'Come!'.
What is as a river in heaven (Revelation 22:1), is on earth as streams in the desert (Isaiah 35:1-6); for the world is becoming a spiritual desert, just as much of the Sahara remorselessly extends southward, and in it man glories in the spiritual drought, imagining in his delusions, that it is a lake.
Yet real streams of the power and Spirit of God are as available now as in former times, and the end of the race does not remove the water which runs with us who seek Him. In accord with this Messianic prophecy of Isaiah 35, just as Israel is now literally in its floral production, blossoming as the rose, so are the streams of the Spirit of God freely available BECAUSE Christ has paid (cf. Isaiah 55, Romans 3:23ff.).
Indeed, in Isaiah 44:3, in the very midst of the massive Messianic prophecies of 40, 42, 49-55, there comes this word, and its pith is to one as to all, for as Isaiah 42:6, 49:6 show, the Gentiles are not lacking in the divine gift of new life.
"I will pour water on him who is thirsty, and floods on the dry ground;
I will pour My blessing on your descendants, and My blessing on your offspring."
Indeed, they will spring up, and
"One will say, 'I am the LORD's', another will call himself by the name of Jacob,
another will write on his hand, 'The LORD's ...' "
Here is that same outpouring of the Spirit of God of which Isaiah 32:15-17 speaks, where
"The work of righteousness will be peace, and the effect of righteousness,
quietness and assurance for ever";
and Christ, in John 7:38, is intimating that out of the midst of the believer "will flow rivers of living water," while again, He declares that it will be "in him a fountain of water springing up to everlasting life" (John 4:14).
Thus a mere 5 verses from the end of the Bible, there is this eloquent reminder first, of the presence of water for the soul, that is a refreshing, normal, appropriate, delightfully clear and true meeting in intimate manners of the innermost desires of the heart, needs of the spirit, a provision divine in source and graciously liberal. It is free, moreover, and requires neither tithe to the rapacious, nor submission to the fraudulent for its reception. You just drink it.
In the faith in Christ, this is precisely what comes, for it is no more a barren repetition of a formula than is the word to GO, to the moon-rocket at count-down. The word of acceptance in heart is the signal for the unleashing of a power that is as great as that of the Creator, for it IS His power, which made man, which now makes his heart free, his mind solaced, his wit sharpened and his imagination holy (II Corinthians 5:17ff., John 4:14ff.). The Holy Spirit is sent from the Father by Christ (John 15:26), and in this way the divine power of redemption, moves into the human consequences of regeneration.
Water is so needful for what lives, and is called ... man! It is provided. It is its absence in the heart which leads to the boiling sentiments of unruly terrorism, whether of the mind or heart or spirit, the devices of the devils as in Revelation 16:12ff., which like frogs move about hopping, like cane toads from Queensland, moving to the South, such as Freudianism, Marxism and Darwinianism, those three which seek to subjugate in order, the mind, the body and the life of man (cf. SMR pp. 611ff. and *1 below), which with their degenerate offspring, are so keen to hop into things, and make of man a plagued race, much as was Egypt by more obvious means, during the day of the Exodus!
As well have a car void in its radiator, and expect cool performance, as a man or woman or child without the Spirit of God, and expect godliness, guilelessness, goodness and spiritual courage. Of this, in essence, John 14:15-18 speaks.
"If ye love me, keep my commandments. And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you for ever; even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it does not see Him, neither does it know him: but you know Him; for He dwells with you, and will be in you.
"I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you."
We have been considering the contours as eschatology becomes history; and it is necessary to set the sights, as in any journey, so that envisaging the end, you find the way to it.
First, keep to the book of the Lord (Isaiah 8:20, Revelation 22:18-20), for without His word, it is your own or that of another or some synthesis of sin; for man finite, can as well join his own words to those of God as can you joint a feather to steel and hope it will fly.
Secondly, keep to the Lord of the Book, for you can as well serve God without God as can a chicken go to school.
Thirdly, work out your own salvation in the Lord, for it is God who works in you both to will and to do in this matter, and without this, there IS no salvation, but IN salvation, there is no other procedure. This is its intrinsic nature (Philippians 2:12-13, I Thessalonians 5:9-10).
Fourthly, rejoice! Rejoice again, says Paul. Why not be happy in the felicity that is God, in the functionality that is salvation, in the situation which is so far better than the best sea view from a shore-built house (itself imperilled by rising waters), in the love of Christ, which is better than the milk of sweetness and the tang of oranges, the strength of honey or the perfume of daphne, in the power to perform which is His gift (Ephesians 3:16), and in the assurance that having saved you, He will keep you (John 10:9,27-28, Romans 8:29ff.), for what is justified will be glorified (cf. Romans 8:17), and what is not justified has not even begun (Romans 4:25-5:1).
Serve Him unflinchingly, for what is worth offending so great a God, and complete the works He appoints you, for do you not for earthly employers or enterprise, secure favour; and what then is your desire for your heavenly friend, Maker and Redeemer.
Do not worry, moreover, for this adds nothing but loss to your schedule, and never give way to moods, for these are but substitutes for spiritual understanding and health, and not to be tolerated for one short moment. It is an indulgence, not having sulphuric acid in your radiator, and is to be suffered as readily.
Instead, be constant in prayer and in faithful expectation (Ephesians 6:18, Philippians 4:6). God is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all you ask or think; and it seems that OUGHT to be sufficient.
However, never imagine that your wish is His command, and recall that if it were, you would have done some foolish things! Your wish is on His platter, and in His heart He may deny it as wrong-headed, wrong-hearted, too superficial or not in His plans; but your welfare in His service is in His heart, and when He closes one thing, another more apt is at hand. BELIEVE Him, as well as believing in Him, and you will never be ashamed (Joel 2:26-27, Isaiah 28:16, Psalm 33:20ff., 34:19-22). Instead, the very spiritual air you live in, becomes the permanent atmosphere of life in heaven, and the character forged on earth comes intact and washed, into the heaven from which in Christ, its earthly life has come.
On Barth and neo-orthodoxy, see:
Lead us Not into Temptation Ch. 3
The Biblical Workman, Appendix 3,
Light of Dawn Ch. 2 ;
Here are seen some of the neological inventions of such neo-orthodoxy, some of the precipitous perils of that ardent and erratic revisionism which makes new christs, instead of dealing with new-made men THROUGH the unchanging because actual Christ (Hebrews 13:8). We do not need the magician's verbal wand, but the power of God which raised the body of Christ from the dead, that SAME Jesus who had first of all shown the Father (John 14), so that he who had seen Him had seen the Father.
There is more to consider here.
Romanist (SMR pp. 1032-1088H), some Protestant (cf. SMR pp. 861ff,) as well as Islamic creations (More Marvels …Ch. 4) have all been busy in the transfiguration not with light, but with imagination, unwarranted by the Bible (cf. SMR Ch. 9, 1080ff.), unseen in history, fulfilling but one prediction, that of itching ears (Timothy 4), following one stream, that of making new christs. As to that, it is a manufacture begun as early as in the day of II Corinthians 10-11, where Paul is appalled by the folly of another Jesus, another Gospel, while there is no other, and another Spirit.
How different is the Islamic model is shown not least in its use of force, whereas the Gospel is a work where grace prevails, Christ's the only work that saves (Romans 3:23ff.), and force is forbidden in the area and arena of faith, categorically (Ephesians 2:1-10, Matthew 26:52ff., John 18:36). His kingdom is defined in utter, explicit and entire separation from such means, in which the Koran, by contrast, abounds (Beauty for Ashes Ch. 4, *2 Divine Agenda Ch. 6, How Great is the God We Adore Ch. 11, SMR pp. 50ff., 65ff.).
Nor does or could force avail here. Such a molestation of faith's arena precludes religion relevant to man, as the basis. We are not so made that faith can be forced; only externalities, and these are not faith but practical fictions, not truth, but duress.
The standards of God are never met by the endeavours of man; through faith by grace they may be sought, and substantial work done in the area of regeneration through redemption, but nothing approaching satisfaction with that entire perfection which is God's alone, can ever be attained by tainted man, on this earth. Neither alms nor fastings nor visits to this or that site will ever atone for man's sin, nor victory in earthly contests bring heavenly reception; nor can such works fail to bring divine indignation, when set for such a task, any less than did Cain's offering of grain, the works of his hands! Isaiah 1, as also Isaiah 53, make clear the entire cleavage between the Old Testament prophets, sent by God as Muhammad indicated, and the alien teaching of this desert prince.
It is so easy to downgrade the true God to an invented one, until he can be manipulated who, not attested in history, is invested with delegated powers from the mind and heart of man. That is the precise meaning of 'false christ'. Neither can Christ nor any of the prophets be invented 600 years after the event; and with Christ, it becomes not only anti-historical folly, but antithetical to deity, a work of imagination for the attested incarnation of God. SO vague is the teaching, that it is not even clear as to the very death of Christ! (Tender Times for Timely Truth Ch. 8, End-note *1 ).
God sent; we do not invent. TEST all things if you do not wish to be gulled in mind, filleted with fiction, so that emptiness reigns (I Thessalonians 5). What answers is but one (cf. Celestial Harmony for the Terrestrial Host ). Here the predictive word, the grace of face and the power of work by day all confirm what nothing else can even approach.
It should be remembered that all souls must repent, none can continue in the path of his birth, all are conceived in sin, neither can any hope to conserve his own life; for coming to God is leaving what one was, in the ultimate capacity as a person, and becoming what God first desired, and now re-applies, in regeneration. No religion confers unalterability on any; ALL must die to their own lives and live for Christ. To reject Him is simply to place a cross of negation, instead of receiving the cross of divine affirmation (Galatians 6:14, II Corinthians 5:17ff.).
See Secular Myths and Sacred Truth, SMR pp. 611ff..
Myths which make 'need' of this or that in order to enhance what man thinks would be, or would have been nice to have, the basis of actually getting it, are as ludicrous as a young man 'needing' $100,000 to set up a business. Such 'need' does not invent the requirement or provide the access. You need what does the job, and time to get it done does not add to anything, if you lack what does it.
Time does not invent powers of logical analysis from nothing, or powers of assessment, decision and selection of principles from nowhere, or orderly arrangements out of none.
If you want something, you need what it takes, not hope plus time plus an assumption that it MUST come because it did. The only MUST in this, is what did it; and neither nothing nor palpably inadequate ideas do it, nor does whatever you want of order and system and method, to start, just come. It all needs what it takes. That is one reason why man does not create universes. He ONLY has intelligence, imagination, logical though facilities, powers inherent in the universe, decision and honing capacities. THAT is not anywhere near enough.
Nothing is even less, and so is it with whatever you choose in your imagination to begin. Short or long, steps or not, it ALL has to be DONE by what has what it takes to get it done. Imagination makes myths, what lack definable and empirical ability to secure the results in view. God does not so lack, and His attestations are as set out repeatedly on this site, and systematically to the point in view in Celestial Harmony for the Terrestrial Host.
These come in prophecy, retrodiction and prediction, in verified principles and powers, in logical coherence that is unique in all thought and in the ability to avoid in this way the antilogies, antinomies and antics which otherwise make of man's attempts to declare the absolute truth in its imaginary absence, a work of mythical art, and nothing more.
See the following.
Spiritual Refreshings Ch. 3 (News 97), 4 (News 98) esp. *2, 8, 9, 11, 16 (and generic dyspepsia in alogisms), 13;
News 150 (people crushers), The Pitter-Patter of Prophetic Feet Ch. 9;
Divine Agenda Ch. 3 ('my pretty maid' where are you going ?!),
Beauty of Holiness Ch. 4, esp. *2;
News 69, 70, 82, Highway of Holiness Ch. 9,
News, Facts and Forecasts - News 121-122;
Great Execrations, Great Enervations, Greater Grace Ch. 3;
Things Old and New Ch. 5 (and celebrating humanity and the ilk);
News 87 (step 9 - in overview);
Of the Earth, Earthy or Celestial in Christ Ch. 2, and people crushers - News 150,
Three Anzas, One Answer Ch. 3,
Jesus Christ, Defaced, Unfazed: Barrister of Bliss Ch. 3;
and parallels in array: Acme, Alpha and Omega ... Ch. 9,
SMR Ch. 10, Ext. 5, pp. 1074ff., Ch. 9, p. 809, 925ff. and Index;
Repent or Perish Ch. 5,
News Facts and Forecasts 14, Tender Times ... Ch. 8,
Answers to Questions 4, p. 89;
Lord of Life Ch. 8;
Journey to God or Fantasy's Flight to the Infernal Ch. 4 (and Islam),
Of the Earth, Earhty or Celestial in Christ Ch. 4 (Marx, Darwin and Muhammad).
See also on Islam:
More Marvels Ch. 4.