Rev 15:3                   The Song of Moses and of the Lamb                4/2/2006         ßà   

 

 

#1.       The Revelation of Jesus Christ (Rev 15:1-8)

 

 

 

 

 

  • 7 Angels, or 7 Messengers? (Rev 15:1, 21:9,15, 22:6,8-9, Mat 27:51-53, Psalm 5:5, 11:5)

 

 

 

 

 

  • Imprecatory Psalms (Ps 58:10-11, 68:1-3,22-23, 79:12, 137:8-9, 149:7-9, Rev 18:20)

 

 

 

 

 

#2.       Moses At the Red Sea (Rev 15:3, Ex 15:1-13)

 

 

 

 

 

  • Not one of the Egyptians escaped (Rev 15:3-4)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Please open your Bibles to the Revelation of Jesus Christ, Rev 15:1 (2X). At the conclusion of Rev 14 we saw that the Lord Jesus Christ reaped the harvest of saints from the earth. He also gathered all the unrighteous from the earth and their blood was pressed out in the great winepress of the wrath of God, which meant that they must die before they were brought before the Judgment Throne of Christ. But the judgment of all the unrighteous is not going to take place until Rev 20. And thus, Rev 15, and 16, and 17, and 18 are given to us as an overview of the destruction of the kingdom of Antichrist.

Perhaps you remember that Rev 11 was a general outline of the chapters to follow. You remember that in Rev 11 the two witnesses were resurrected and raptured to be with Christ. Then the last trumpet sounded, and there were voices which sing in heaven, and the opening of the temple of God in heaven was accompanied by signs of great judgment upon the earth. These events are now being worked out in Rev 15 and 16, for these two chapters belong together. In these two chapters we have a vision of the seven vials of the wrath of God poured out upon the kingdom of Antichrist. These 7 vials of wrath are representing successive events in the kingdom of Antichrist until its destruction in the 7th vial.

If you now take a look at the general outline of the entire Revelation of Jesus Christ, you will get the impression that this prophecy sees this earth and the human race from a very judgmental point of view. Just think of it: There are seven seals, and of these seven seals only the first one speaks of the glorious event of the Gospel of Christ going out into all the world. All the other six seals speak of much judgment to follow. Then there are seven trumpets, and all seven trumpets have to do with judgment and more judgment. Then there are the seven Angels of chapter 14, and all seven Angels speak of judgment and more judgment. Then come the seven vials of the wrath of God, and all seven speak of judgment and more judgment. What in the world is going on? This is supposed to be:

#1.       The Revelation of Jesus Christ (Rev 15:1-8)

It is an aspect of Jesus Christ that is not very well taught in the churches that we came out of. The question is: “What is this aspect of Jesus Christ?” How does this characteristic of Judgment round off our understanding of who Jesus Christ really is? And according to the Bible, how does this judgment fit into our understanding of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, which is the Good News of Jesus Christ? These are some of the questions we want to search out in the sermon of today. These are some of the questions that rise up out of “The Song of Moses” that the Bible speaks about. Therefore, the title of the sermon today is, The Song of Moses and of the Lamb (2X). Let us read about this here in:

Re 15:1-2 And I saw another sign in heaven, great and marvellous, seven angels having the seven last plagues; for in them is filled up the wrath of God.        And I saw as it were a sea of glass mingled with fire: and them that had gotten the victory over the beast, and over his image, and over his mark, and over the number of his name, stand on the sea of glass, having the harps of God.

Re 15:3  And they sing the song of Moses the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying, Great and marvellous are thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are thy ways, thou King of saints.

Re 15:4-5  Who shall not fear thee, O Lord, and glorify thy name? for thou only art holy: for all nations shall come and worship before thee; for thy judgments are made manifest.              And after that I looked, and, behold, the temple of the tabernacle of the testimony in heaven was opened:

Re 15:6  And the seven angels came out of the temple, having the seven plagues, clothed in pure and white linen, and having their breasts girded with golden girdles.     And one of the four beasts gave unto the seven angels seven golden vials full of the wrath of God, who liveth for ever and ever.

Re 15:8  And the temple was filled with smoke from the glory of God, and from his power; and no man was able to enter into the temple, till the seven plagues of the seven angels were fulfilled.

God is showing us the progress of destruction in the kingdom of Antichrist. The destruction was more complete in the seven trumpets than in the seven seals. And now the destruction will be entirely complete in the seven vials, and the wrath of God is finished in them. But why does God call this a great and marvellous sign? First of all, John tells us, “I saw another sign in heaven”. What other sign is this? John tells us here of another sign in contrast with the signs that he has seen before. First there was the sign of the woman clothed with the Sun and with the moon under her feet. Then there was the sign of the beast with the seven heads and the ten horns and his assistant, the beast that looks like a lamb but he spoke as a dragon. Then there was the sign of the Lamb standing on Mount Sion together with the 144,000 faithful ones around Him. Then there was the sign of the seven Angels flying in mid-heaven announcing that Judgment Day has come, and reaping the harvest of saved souls, and reaping the vintage of the unrighteous on the earth. Now John tells us of another sign, great and marvellous. In other words, it is awe inspiring and wonderful, for the sign which he now beholds is of the greatest importance. John looks at it with wonder and joy. But this sign is again filled with judgment and destruction. Does it seem that John had a different perspective and understanding of who God is than most Christians do today? He calls this vision “great and marvellous”. What did John see? Are these:

  • 7 Angels, or 7 Messengers? (Rev 15:1, 21:9,15, 22:6,8-9, Mat 27:51-53, Psalm 5:5, 11:5)

Please turn in your Bibles to Rev 21:9 (2X). Let us find out who these seven angels are. We read in

Re 15:1 ¶  And I saw another sign in heaven, great and marvellous, seven angels having the seven last plagues; for in them is filled up the wrath of God.

We are going to find out that these are not really angels, for we read in Rev 21:9,

Re 21:9  And there came unto me one of the seven angels which had the seven vials full of the seven last plagues, and talked with me, saying, Come hither, I will shew thee the bride, the Lamb’s wife.

And then John saw that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God. In other words, the Body of Believers, also called the Body of Christ, is the Bride of Christ, or the Temple of God, and is pictured as a holy city, the New Jerusalem, descending out of the present heaven, and going into the New Creation which is also called the New Heaven and the New Earth. Drop down to:

Re 21:15 And he that talked with me had a golden reed to measure the city, and the gates thereof, and

the wall thereof.               Now drop down to chapter 22:6 (2X),

Re 22:6 ¶  And he said unto me, These sayings are faithful and true: and the Lord God of the holy prophets sent his angel to shew unto his servants the things which must shortly be done.

What is John’s reaction to all of this? The vision of this beautiful “angel” and the vision of this New Jerusalem is so glorious to John that he falls down, thinking that he is standing before God.

Re 22:8  And I John saw these things, and heard them. And when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which shewed me these things.

Re 22:9  Then saith he unto me, See thou do it not: for I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren the prophets, and of them which keep the sayings of this book: worship God.

And so we see that this is not an angel, but is one of the saints in heaven who has already received his glorified body. When did he receive his glorified body? We read in Mat 27:51-53,

Mt 27:51-53  And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent;                     And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose,          And came out of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many.

These saints, who were privileged to undergo an early rapture, did not go into the earthly city of Jerusalem, but they went into the holy city, the heavenly Jerusalem, for after the veil of the temple was rent, the earthly Jerusalem is no longer the city of God. But what we understand from this encounter of John with a fellow believer in heaven is that our glorified bodies will truly be glorious. In fact, our new glorified bodies will be so glorious that if a present human being saw us in our glorified body he would fall down and worship, thinking that he has seen God. But another consequence of reading these verses is this: When we see the word “angel” in Rev 15, and in the following two chapters, we should replace it by the word “messenger”, for these are all human beings who have already received their glorified bodies. These 7 human beings have received the privilege of pouring the vials of the wrath of God over the earth. It is their pleasure to do so, for when we are in glory God will not ask us to do something that causes us grief. Why do they love to do it? Why do they love to inflict pain and suffering on the human beings on this earth? The answer is very simple: They have received the mind of God. When we are in glory we will no longer think, or act, or feel like we did when we were on this earth. We will think and act and feel like God does, and we will hate the sinner as well as the sin with a passion. God certainly hates the sinner as well as the sin, for God says in Psalm 5:5, “The foolish shall not stand in thy sight: thou hatest all workers of iniquity.” And God says in Psalm 11:5, “The LORD trieth the righteous: but the wicked and him that loveth violence his soul hateth.” Therefore we read in the next verse that God shall rain snares, and fire, and brimstone upon the wicked. This is an aspect of God that we do not hear much about, but it is found all throughout the Bible. For example, have you heard of the Imprecatory Psalms? What in the world are Imprecatory Psalms?

  • Imprecatory Psalms (Ps 58:10-11, 68:1-3,22-23, 79:12, 137:8-9, 149:7-9, Rev 18:20)

I wrote those words on the board to teach the children how it is spelled. These are Psalms that contain a curse on the wicked. Who are the wicked? Everyone unsaved falls in the category of the wicked. Please turn in your Bible to the prophecy of the Psalms, Psalm 58:10 (2X). Allow me to make a comment about the English language in the title of the Psalms. This scroll is called the Scroll of Psalms or the prophecy of the Psalms, plural. But if we consider one particular Psalm out of this collection of Psalms then we speak of a Psalm, singular. And so, when we quote from Psalm 58 we do not say Psalms 58, but we say Psalm 58, singular, for it is only one Psalm. We read here in Psalm 58:10-11,

Ps 58:10-11  The righteous shall rejoice when he seeth the vengeance: he shall wash his feet in the blood of the wicked.          So that a man shall say, Verily there is a reward for the righteous: verily he is a God that judgeth in the earth.

Shall the righteous rejoice when he sees the vengeance of God and when God shall cast all the unsaved into Hell? And the answer is: Absolutely Yes! When we have arrived in glory, either in heaven or in the presence of Christ on Judgment Day, we will have the mind of God concerning the hatred of sin and the hatred of all unsaved people. Such hatred that metaphorically speaking we will wash our feet in their blood. Such hatred that we shall consider it a great reward when God avenges their crimes perpetrated on us. Such hatred that we will rejoice when they shall be cast into Hell. Can we presently understand this? No! In our present life on earth we cannot understand such a hatred for sinners, for we ourselves fall in this category also. In this present life we are commanded to love our fellow man, and to do all we can to bring him to salvation. This we can understand. But to hate someone who is still unsaved to such an extent that we rejoice when he is cast into a lake of fire to suffer the torment of flames forever and ever, that is not something we can understand. And yet, this is the plain teaching of the Bible. The same idea is reflected in Psalm 68. Please turn to Psalm 68:1 (2X).

Ps 68:1-2  <<To the chief Musician, A Psalm or Song of David.>> Let God arise, let his enemies be scattered: let them also that hate him flee before him.           As smoke is driven away, so drive them away: as wax melteth before the fire, so let the wicked perish at the presence of God.

Ps 68:3  But let the righteous be glad; let them rejoice before God: yea, let them exceedingly rejoice.

Can you see here that the enemies of God shall perish, meaning be cast into Hell, at the presence of God? And the saints rejoice twice: They shall rejoice for being in the presence of God, and they shall rejoice that the enemies of God are cast into Hell. That this is the meaning of these verses becomes evident when we look at verses 22 and 23 in this Psalm. We read in verses 22-23,

Ps 68:22-23  The Lord said, I will bring again from Bashan, I will bring my people again from the depths of the sea:    That thy foot may be dipped in the blood of thine enemies, and the tongue of thy dogs in the same.

Here again God portrays bloodthirsty saints who will delight to dip their feet in the blood of their

enemies. For sure this is only metaphorical language, for earthly dogs do not inherit the Kingdom of God. This is language from this earth, to convey the idea that our hatred of the wicked and their sins is just as fierce as God’s hatred of them and their sins. Please turn to Psalm 79:12 (2X).

Ps 79:12  And render unto our neighbours sevenfold into their bosom their reproach, wherewith they have reproached thee, O Lord.

On earth we are commanded to love our neighbors, but when we are in the presence of Christ we will beseech Him saying: “Please, Lord, return to our neighbors sevenfold into their bosom what they have done unto Thee.” Please turn to Psalm 137:8 (2X). This Psalm contains a curse on Babylon:

Ps 137:8-9  O daughter of Babylon, who art to be destroyed; happy shall he be, that rewardeth thee as thou hast served us.    Happy shall he be, that taketh and dasheth thy little ones against the stones.

The picture given to us here is that little children and babies will be taken by their legs and their heads will be smashed against the rocks. This is ghastly language pronouncing a curse on those who belong to Babylon. Which Babylon is God referring to? We must always keep in mind that God wrote the Bible to us. This Psalm was written for the edification of people in all centuries, not only for those who lived in the time just before the city of Babylon was destroyed by the Medes and the Persians. Psalm 137:8-9 was also a message to us, in this 21st century. And thus the curse pronounced in this Psalm is directed toward the Babylon of Rev 17 and 18. This is the “daughter of Babylon, who art to be destroyed”. This shows how much God hates the wicked and their children. Please turn to Psalm 149:7

Ps 149:7-9  To execute vengeance upon the heathen, and punishments upon the people;    To bind their kings with chains, and their nobles with fetters of iron;       To execute upon them the judgment written: this honour have all his saints. Praise ye the LORD.

Do you see that? “This honor have all His saints.” We shall have the honor of executing upon all the unsaved the judgment that was written. Now we cannot see that as an honor, but when we have come in glory we shall consider it as an honor that we may cast people in Hell. And this is the tenor of the passages we read in Rev 15, and following. Please turn again to the Revelation of Jesus Christ, Rev 18:20 (2X). The seven “messengers” who were chosen to pour out the vials of the wrath of God upon the earth shall consider it an honor that they have been selected. They will delight in executing the vengeance of God, especially in the case of the future Babylon. We read in Rev 18:20, “Rejoice over her, thou heaven, and ye holy apostles and prophets; for God hath avenged you on her.” This aspect of God as the Avenger of the saints, the One who will demand retribution for sins, is woven throughout all the Scriptures. We have looked only at the Imprecatory Psalms, but there are many more passages outside the Psalms that deal with the same subject matter. Not only is God personally the Avenger on behalf of His saints, but the saints will be part of the program of inflicting the penalty on the wicked. Let us now return to Rev 15:3 (2X). And there we read about:

#2.       Moses At the Red Sea (Rev 15:3, Ex 15:1-13)

Re 15:3  And they sing the song of Moses the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying, Great and marvellous are thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are thy ways, thou King of saints.

What Song of Moses is this verse referring to? There are two accounts of Moses singing praises to God. In both cases Moses looks back upon the wonderful providence of God in guiding and protecting His people, and in the mighty works of God in avenging Himself upon the enemies of His people. And is this not also the picture here in Rev 15:2-4? Who are the ones standing here on the sea of glass? These are representing all the saints from all times. These are all of God’s elect, singing praises, for God’s providence has upheld them, has kept them faithful to the end, and God has poured His vengeance upon their enemies. They have been victorious in their battle against Satan, for they were sustained by their faith in Jesus and by His testimony. Please turn in your Bibles to the prophecy of Exodus, Ex 15:1 (2X). In principle Satan and his Antichristian power were in the world from the very beginning. In principle the people of God fight the same battle all through the ages, even though this battle shall rage most severely in the time of the full manifestation of the antichristian world-power near the end of time. And the song which they sing is that of Moses and of the Lamb, combing therefore the OT and the NT time into one. It also tells us that the song which Moses sang is the same as the song of the Lord Jesus Christ, for these saints are not singing two songs; they sing only one song as it is recorded here. Now here they stand on the sea of glass. It is the church in glory. And the sea of glass is here mingled with fire, since it reflects the wrath of God which He shall shortly pour it out over the wicked world of Antichrist, and which wrath He shall also pour out for the salvation and glory of His people. And thus the entire scene reminds us of the children of Israel standing at the border of the Red Sea, not on the Egyptian side but at the Sinai Peninsula side. In other words they have just crossed the Red Sea on dry ground and they are looking back upon that sea which had become the wrath of God upon their enemies, but at the same time it had become the sea of their own salvation. The Egyptians tried to cross the same Red Sea like the children of Israel did, but they did it on their own strength, not by God’s strength, and this was the cause of their death. Even as the children of Israel stood by the sea reflecting on the wrath of God, so stand these victorious saints by the sea of glass mingled with fire. Even as that sea in the case of Israel had become the cause of destruction for the enemies of God, so also this sea of glass symbolizes the reflection of the wrath of God which will destroy the Antichrist and his kingdom. Even as in the case of Israel that sea was the cause for their permanent deliverance from Egypt, so also shall these saints enter into their full inheritance after God shall have caused the vials of His wrath be poured out over the wicked world. Even as the children of Israel at the Red Sea sang of victory, so also do these saints on the sea of glass sing of the righteousness and of the arm of the Lord, the God of their salvation. And what did they sing? We read that here in Ex 15:1,

Ex 15:1-2  Then sang Moses and the children of Israel this song unto the LORD, and spake, saying, I will sing unto the LORD, for he hath triumphed gloriously: the horse and his rider hath he thrown into the sea.     The LORD is my strength and song, and he is become my salvation: he is my God, and I will prepare him an habitation; my father’s God, and I will exalt him.

Ex 15:3  The LORD is a man of war: the LORD is his name.

Ex 15:4-5  Pharaoh’s chariots and his host hath he cast into the sea: his chosen captains also are drowned in the Red sea.      The depths have covered them: they sank into the bottom as a stone.

Ex 15:6-7  Thy right hand, O LORD, is become glorious in power: thy right hand, O LORD, hath dashed in pieces the enemy.     And in the greatness of thine excellency thou hast overthrown them that rose up against thee: thou sentest forth thy wrath, which consumed them as stubble.

Ex 15:8  And with the blast of thy nostrils the waters were gathered together, the floods stood upright as an heap, and the depths were congealed in the heart of the sea.

Ex 15:9  The enemy said, I will pursue, I will overtake, I will divide the spoil; my lust shall be satisfied upon them; I will draw my sword, my hand shall destroy them.

Ex 15:10  Thou didst blow with thy wind, the sea covered them: they sank as lead in the mighty waters.

Ex 15:11  Who is like unto thee, O LORD, among the gods? Who is like thee, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders?    Thou stretchedst out thy right hand, the earth swallowed them.

Ex 15:13  Thou in thy mercy hast led forth the people which thou hast redeemed: thou hast guided them in thy strength unto thy holy habitation.

  • Not one of the Egyptians escaped (Rev 15:3-4)

They all died. By that fact God gave us a sign that this event at the Red Sea was a picture of the Judgment of God on sin, at the cross and on the Last Day. The Red Sea symbolized Hell. In His atonement on the cross the Lord Jesus Christ, typified by Moses, walked through the depths of Hell bringing all His elect with Him, for we were in Him. He alone endured the depths of Hell, but by the grace and mercy of God we walked on dry ground. The Egyptians tried to do the same, but they did not have God’s approval for doing so. They had a self-help gospel. They did not want to wait for God’s approval, and so they did it on their own, copying what they saw the children of Israel do. But God was angry and God buried them in Hell, down to the last of them. Thus shall God do in the judgment on the Last Day. Of all those who have a self-help gospel not one of them shall escape Even as Moses, so Christ leads His people out of the house of bondage to sin and Satan. Even as Moses and his people, so Christ and His people are the object of the persecution and wrath of the enemy. But even as Moses, so also Christ leads His people safely through the waters of separation and of wrath, and strikes those waters of the wrath of God, so that they become at the same time a means of salvation for His people and a means of destruction for the enemy. Can you see how this rejoicing about the death of the Egyptians by Moses and the children of Israel is like the rejoicing about the death of the wicked in the Imprecatory Psalms? They are rejoicing even though it is a certainty that Pharaoh and all his army are going to be cast into Hell. What a gruesome prospect for all those Egyptians. And God did this for our

edification, so that we would learn to know who He is.

Compare this situation now with the people of God who stand on the sea of glass in Rev 15. Please turn again to the Revelation of Jesus Christ, Rev 15:3 (2X). These people standing on the sea of glass are all delivered from sin and from the oppression of the enemy. And they can already see how God will pour out His wrath upon the enemy of Christ, for out of them have seven been chosen to pour out that wrath upon the world. And therefore, their condition is now exactly like that of the children of Israel after they had passed through the Red Sea and had seen the destruction of their oppressors. And for that same reason they now sing the same song, exalting the power of Jehovah, the salvation of His people, and the wrath that will be visited upon the wicked who have oppressed them for so long. And now we see that the song of Moses is also the song of the Lamb. Even as Moses taught his people to sing his song, so the Lamb taught His people to sing this song. They are essentially alike, they sing essentially the same theme, the one of Moses is just a type of the song of the Lamb in Rev 15:3. Let us hear then what they sing. We read in Rev 15:3-4,

Re 15:3  And they sing the song of Moses the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying, Great and marvellous are thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are thy ways, thou King of saints.

Re 15:4-5  Who shall not fear thee, O Lord, and glorify thy name? for thou only art holy: for all nations shall come and worship before thee; for thy judgments are made manifest.

First of all, there is nothing in this song that glorifies man. From beginning to the end it is an exaltation of the greatness and the power and the glory of God. It is God’s greatness, and God’s Truth, and God’s righteousness, and the holiness of God that is here celebrated. And when we compare this with the song of Moses in Ex 15 we find the same elements there that glorify God, but not man.

Secondly, these multitudes also sing of the final fulfillment of all prophecy, that now all nations should fear Him and glorify His name. For a time it seemed as if all nations would be worshipping Antichrist. But now we can see that it is all different. They who feared Antichrist were not the nations, but were the branches of the nations that were to be cut off and cast into outer darkness. The nations have been preserved and they are represented by this multitude.

We too, while we are still in this world, may already sing this song of Moses and of the Lamb, although we do not yet sing it in perfection. Even our best singing sounds in the ears of God like the braying of a donkey. But God looks upon the heart. That is what counts. We are still in the world, in a sinful body, and we are still in the midst of a spiritual battle against spiritual wickedness in high places. But by the grace of God we can listen to the song of the redeemed multitude, and learn it, and look forward to the day when we all shall stand by the sea of glass, delivered from sin and oppression, delivered from the enemy who always surrounds us, and we are free to serve and glorify the God of our salvation in order to sing the song of Moses and of the Lamb. May our faith cause us to look forward in hope, and teach us to sing this song of victory in the midst of our spiritual battles.  AMEN

Let us turn to the Lord in prayer.