3 Angels' Messages (Rev. 14:6-12)
The 3 Angels' Messages are a part of the prophecy of Revelation 13-14 that contrasts true and false worship in the battle between Jesus and Satan. These messages are directly from Jesus to His people. They are an invitation to each individual, and an end-time imperative. Wherever you are and whichever religion you are in, He is calling to you through these messages of mercy. He extends the invitation to trust Him as He reveals what is happening in the world and how to survive the pending catastrophe.
1. Identify the true God & His Message
Revelation 14:6-7 "And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come: and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters."
Key summary points of message #1:
- Identify the true God.
- Submit wholly to Him.
- Properly worship Him.
- Recognize and proclaim His true gospel message.
(v.6) - Earlier in Revelation, John is told that the "seven stars are the angels [messengers] of the seven churches" (Rev. 1:20). The word translated to "angel" is "angelos", which means messenger and can refer to actual angelic beings or to anyone who brings a message, such as preachers or a church. John the Baptist is called an "angelos" (messenger - Mark 1:2). The gospel truth is committed to God's church (1 Tim. 3:15) to proclaim (Matt. 28:18-20). This angel represents God's church (the messenger) sharing a message sent by God ("in the midst of heaven"). It is to be preached to the entire planet ("to every nation" - Matt. 24:14), indicating a world-wide movement that can understand and share it.
(v. 6) - This gospel is the same one preached to Abraham (Gal. 3:8), also preached by the apostles and now by the end-time church. It is the foundation of the Three Angels' Messages and is the good news of salvation by grace through faith in Jesus Christ (Eph. 2:8, Rom. 1:15, Gal. 3:7-9). Through Jesus' perfect life, death, resurrection and priestly ministration, He enables humans to be restored into the image of God. This is an invitation Jesus extends to everyone. Hearing and believing this gospel and trusting the working out of the will of Jesus results in being sealed (Eph. 1:11-13, Rev. 7:2-4, 14:3-5).
|The Everlasting Gospel of Salvation is the good news that Jesus loves you and offers to save you from...
||The delusion of sin so you know right from wrong (Ps. 25:8, 51:13, 111:10, Num. 15:22-29, Acts 17:30, Tit. 3:3-6).
||The slavery of sin by giving you a new spiritual nature, which is the Holy Spirit dwelling in you, so Jesus' character can be replicated in you to keep His law and stop doing the things that harm yourself and others (2 Tim. 2:26, Rom. 8:7, Rom. 6:14-18, Eph. 6:11, Ja. 4:7, 1 Pet. 5:8-9, 1 Jn. 3:8).
||The association with sin during the pre-advent judgment when your sins are blotted out of the books (Acts 3:19-20, Heb. 10:16-18, Dan. 7:10), and at the second coming when you receive an immortal body (1 Cor. 15:51-58).
||The consequences of sin (1 Jn. 3:4), which is the second death (Rom 6:23,3:23, Rev. 20:6-15), so you may live eternally with God (Heb. 2:14-15, Jn. 10:28).
(v. 7) - The world is called upon to fear God, which means to respect, obey (Ecc. 12:13, Ps. 112:1, Job 28:28, Prov. 3:7), revere (Ps. 89:7) and be in awe of God (Ps. 33:6-9), because the time of His righteous judgment, foretold by the prophets, has arrived (1 Jn. 4:15-17, Rev. 15:4).
Give glory to God
(v. 7) - When Moses asked to see God's glory, he was shown God's character (Ex. 33:18-19). God makes possible our existence, salvation (Ps. 85:9) and future. His actions reveal what He is like. We give glory to God by showing to others God's character (Jn. 17:10,22-23). There are many ways to do this, including reflecting His character (Jn. 7:18, 15:8, 2 Cor. 3:18, Heb. 13:20-21, 1 Pet. 1:21-24, Matt. 5:16), sharing the good news (Ps. 96:3, 2 Cor. 4:5-6), taking care of our minds/bodies (1 Cor. 6:19-20, 10:31), using our spiritual gifts (1 Pet. 4:11), and rejoicing in trials (1 Pet. 4:16-17).
Judgment has come
(v. 7) - The prophecy in Daniel 7
reveals that there is a time of judgment for God's people during the latter time of the divided Roman realm (486 AD to Second Coming) ("judgment was set... books were opened" - Dan. 7:10, 22, 26). That court scene was paralleled in Daniel's next vision in Daniel 8
when the desolation of the sanctuary would be made right ("sanctuary be cleansed" - Dan. 8:14). This event would begin 2300 years after the decree to restore Jerusalem in 457 AD (Dan. 9:23-25), in 1844 AD, and continue until probation closes just prior to Jesus' second coming (Dan. 12:1-2). This 1st angel's message, began in the years just prior to 1844, warns the world that this pre-advent judgment
event has arrived! It is a work of restoration, reconciliation, investigation and cleansing, as typified by the yearly service in the earthly sanctuary (Heb. 9:6-7, Lev. 16:34, Ex. 30:10, Heb. 8:1-5,4:14-16). This ministry of Jesus from the heavenly sanctuary in the plan of salvation makes it possible to put an end to sin, pain and death. It is a welcome event for all who place their lives fully in the hands of Jesus, their advocate and judge (Jn. 5:22).
Worship the Creator
(v. 7) - The response of those who accept the everlasting gospel is to worship their Creator. The wording used is the same as that used in the fourth commandment ("him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters" - Ex. 20:8-11)
pointing us to the Biblical account of creation, which will be a point of contention during the end-times (2 Pet. 3:3-5, Rev. 10:6). Right when this message began to be understood and given (1840s), the theory of evolution was also being promoted. This message calls everyone to recognize our creator and believe in His, and only His, ability to create, redeem and recreate us. Those who worship the creator will be reminded that He rested from His work in creating the world on the 7th day (Gen. 2:1-2) and He also set the 7th day aside for all humanity to rest (Mark 2:27-28).
2. Identify Babylon & It's False Doctrines
Revelation 14:8 "And there followed another angel, saying, Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication."
Key summary points of message #2:
Babylon is Fallen
- Identify the source of error.
- Recognize Babylon's tactics.
- Hold fast to pure Bible doctrine.
(v. 8) - The Bible often uses the symbol of a woman to represent God's people and His church. The church is referred to as a bride and God as her husband (Is. 51:16, 54:5-6, 2 Cor. 11:2, Eph. 5:23-32). A lovely and pure woman represents a pure or true church. In contrast, an unfaithful woman represents a church that no longer loves or obeys God and has impure doctrine. Such a woman is described in Revelation 17 as filthy and drunk (Rev. 17:1-6). She is no longer lovely (Is. 47:1) and is a harlot, representing a church that has become unfaithful to God. She is called "Babylon" and is a "mother of harlots," indicating that an unfaithful church has given rise to additional unfaithful churches that resemble their mother. This unfaithful woman is contrasted with the pure woman of Revelation 12 who also has offspring ("remnant of her seed" - Rev. 12:17), or churches, that resemble her.
When showing John the vision of Babylon, the angel takes him to the wilderness. This is the same place where the saints fled for the 1260 years of persecution (Rev. 12:6,13-14). John is now seeing the woman at the end of the 1260 years, in 1798 AD, as she is "drunk with the blood of the saints" (Rev. 17:6). She wears purple and scarlet, is decked with gold and pearls (rich and showy) and holds a cup of filthiness (false doctrine). As previous prophecies in Revelation and Daniel have shown, the political entity that had power over the saints for 1260 years after the dividing of the Roman Empire (Dan. 2:41, 7:23-25), that setup a substitute system of mediation and forgiveness as it usurped Christ's sanctuary as the only place of forgiveness (Dan. 8:11), and exalted itself in the place of God (Rev. 13:5-7, 2 Thess. 2:3-4), was the papacy (see more "Identifying Characteristics of the Woman
"). The papacy is a system of ecclesiastical government in which the supreme head is the pope. Unfortunately, history shows that the church in Rome compromised with paganism and the Bishop of Rome was exalted above all others resulting in the papal system of church government. Its doctrines became corrupted and it united inappropriately with state powers to enforce its beliefs and persecute God's people. It even claimed to have authority to modify God's times and laws (Dan. 7:25), changing the Sabbath from the seventh day to the first. Most protestant churches today observe the first day of the week in place of the seventh, with many true believers doing so unwittingly, not realizing the source of authority for the substitution.
The woman is a mother (symbolizing the papal system) who is joined by her daughters (those Protestant churches that submit to the authority of the papacy when it contradicts God's Word), which all together form a city called "Mystery, Babylon the Great" (unfaithful churches). When the papacy received its wound in 1798 (Rev. 13:3), protestantism became the dominant religious power in the Roman realm. Unfortunately, by the 1840s, many of the churches of the reformation had either wandered back to their "mother", following Catholic tradition instead of the Bible only, or had rejected additional truth as God tried to lead them step-by-step towards complete restoration. Babylon also becomes "inhabited by devils" (Rev. 18:2), forming a three-part city (Rev. 16:13,19) composed of Catholics, Protestants and "Christian" Spiritualists. As these religious entities are brought closer together through the ecumenical movement, prophecy shows they will increasingly control the state powers and will eventually unite to make religious laws and persecute God's people. Thus, they will make an "image of the beast" (Rev. 13:11-17) symbolizing that Babylon becomes a system that resembles the political-religious papal-led Roman realm during the middle ages. Notice carefully that the woman and her daughters follow papal tradition over the law of God, which is in direct contrast with the pure woman and her remnant who "keep the commandments of God" (Rev.12:17, 14:12).
Babylon, as a city now including the woman's daughters, was first announced as fallen in the summer of 1844, several years after the 1st angel's warning message of judgment began to be given and rejected. This launched the ongoing proclamation of this second message to God's people within the unfaithful churches. Similarly, in Israel's experience, Babylon took them captive for many years, after which a remnant returned to Jerusalem, rebuilt the temple, repaired the breach in the wall and called others to come out of Babylon. In the same way, true-hearted Christians were held "captive" by spiritual Babylon during the 1260 years of papal ecclesiastical dominance (538-1798 AD). However, God has a remnant who have returned to a pure faith, understand and preach the truth of God's sanctuary in heaven and have repaired the breaches in God's law (Is. 58:12-14). The remnant call to the rest of God's people, to leave the fallen churches (Babylon), erroneous doctrines and false teachings.
Babylon = Churches that claim the name of Jesus, but are not faithful to Him and His word.
Nations Drink Wine
- The churches (woman/Babylon) haven't been faithful to God (husband). They have fornicated with the "kings of the earth" (Rev. 18:3), which means they have inappropriate relationships with state powers. The woman (churches) rides on the beast (state powers), directing it (Rev. 17:3) (this is also symbolized by the "image of the beast" - Rev. 13:15). The contents of her cup are described as "abominations" (Rev. 17:2,4). The "wine" of her betrayal represents the beliefs she promotes that are incorrect/unbiblical and draw people away from God (Lk. 5:37-39). She does this with "wrath," very aggressively enacting laws through state powers to enforce religious beliefs. Thus, she gives her false doctrines ("wine") to all the nations and they experience and participate in them ("drink"). These doctrines are smooth and easy to accept and the world becomes more and more unable to discern truth from error ("intoxicated"). At the same time, there are those who are dissatisfied and uncomfortable with the popular trends. They search for clearer light and earnestly seek the truth in the Bible, which finally result in a separation from these churches. Only those who hold fast to Jesus' truths in Scripture are not made drunk.
3. Receive God's Seal or the Mark of the Beast
Revelation 14:9-12 "And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand, The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb: And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name. Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus."
Key summary points of message #3:
Worshipping the beast
- Understand the mark of the beast.
- Avoid the consequences of worshipping the beast.
- Receive the seal of God.
- This third angel's message contrasts those who worship the beast and its image and receive its mark, with those who keep God's commandments and faith of Jesus (v.12). A simple distinction is made between those who receive the mark of the beast and those who do not; those who follow the beast's law receive its mark, and those who follow God's law receive God's mark. The prophecy in Revelation 13
fully exposed the source and meaning of the mark of the beast. A beast from the sea (papacy) worked for 1260 years (Rev. 13:5), and when it received a deadly wound (Rev. 13:3,10) (papacy is declared at an end by Napolean's forces in 1798) a second beast (protestant USA) rises up and eventually forms an image of the first beast (Rev. 13:14-15) (a system of government where church uses the state to enforce beliefs) and causes a mark to be given. The mark of the beast is given in the hand or the forehead (Rev. 13:16), just like the Israelites were instructed to bind God's law on their hand and between their eyes (Deut 11:18, 6:8, Ex. 13:9,16). This means God wants His people to obey and do (hand) and believe and think (forehead) what He commands. This is possible because He writes the law in our hearts (Heb. 8:10). The mark of the beast is not a tattoo or computer chip, but rather it is the Sea Beast's (papacy's) law that a person chooses to follow in place of God's law. Submitting to the law of a ruler puts that ruler's mark of authority on you. Remember that the papacy would "think to change the times and the law" (Dan. 7:25); changing God's law was an intentional, deliberate act. The papacy openly claims that changing the sacredness of the Sabbath in the 4th commandment from the 7th day to the 1st day ("times and laws") is a mark of its authority.
The time when the protestant USA leads out in forming this image of the beast and causes the mark to be given is yet future. No one has received the mark yet! God makes sure everyone first receives the warning under circumstances that bring conviction. The mark of the beast and the mark (seal) of God (see Revelation 14
) are only given after a person repeatedly rejects or accepts truth and finally settles fully into his or her decision. When the time of forcing the conscience through state powers comes at some point in the very near future, and all people have heard the warning message clearly, those who follow man's law when it contradicts God's law receive the mark of the beast, and those who stay true to God's law receive the seal of God. All are called to worship God, their Creator, by recognizing His authority and giving love and obedience to that authority.
What is Worship? The words in the Bible translated to "worship" mean to bow down, serve, prostrate, give homage, and revere. It is
Wine of the Wrath of God
- admitting another's superiority,
- submitting to their power and
- obeying them.
- Unlike the contents in the woman's cup, which are abominations, God's cup is full of the wrath of God, which are the 7 Last Plagues (Rev. 15:6-8, 18:2-8). Those who worship the beast experience and participate in ("drink") the plagues ("wine") (Ps. 91). These are horrible afflictions culminating in the 7th plague when the earth is burned up (2 Pet. 3:10). "Fire and brimstone" refer to the second death (Rev. 21:8) when the wicked burn up and become chaff (Mal. 4:1-3), like they had never been (Ob. 1:16). The smoke, or the result of the burning, will last forever, not the burning itself (Ez. 28:17-19).
Commandments of God
- Those who receive the mark of the beast (follow man's law when it contradicts God's law) and experience the plagues are contrasted with those who keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus. This goes back to the main point of who a person chooses to worship and how. The saints patiently keep all of the ten commandments, just like Jesus and the apostles did. They trust, love and obey the God who created them. They delight in the law of God (Ps. 40:8) and it is their seal (Is. 8:16). By willingly following God's law and empowered to keep it through faith, they reflect Jesus' character ("father's name written in their foreheads" - Rev. 14:1).
Faith of Jesus
- Salvation is freely available as a gift from God through faith. Faith itself is a gift from God. Embracing faith connects you to God. When Jesus lived a perfect life on earth, He relied on that connection with God for power. The faith of Jesus is replicated in His followers, enabling them to rest from their own works (Heb. 4:3-11) and keep God's commandments through the power imparted to them by Jesus (see the finishing of the Mystery of God
). You may assuredly believe that He is able to do this and more in you. "To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne" (Rev. 3:21).
Exercising faith in Jesus develops within you the faith of Jesus, which is the key to gaining the promised victory (Rev. 12:11, 15:2, 22:14-15).
4. Babylon's Destruction is Imminent. Come Out Immediately!
Revelation 18:1-4 "And after these things I saw another angel come down from heaven, having great power; and the earth was lightened with his glory. And he cried mightily with a strong voice, saying, Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird. For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies. And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues".
Key summary points of message #4:
- Recognize when Babylon's fall is complete.
- Separate from Babylon now.
- Help share this message loudly.
- The 3 Angels' Messages continue to be proclaimed until the close of probation. They swell into a mighty and very powerful message as symbolized by this angel of great power who expounds on the messages. This increase in volume and urgency are accompanied by an amazing manifestation of God's character ("lightened with his glory").
Habitation of Devils
- As we get closer to the second coming, spiritualism and mysticism in the unfaithful churches (Babylon) become more and more pronounced ("is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit"). Babylon's fall becomes complete when church and state powers fully unite ("all nations have drunk") to legislate religious laws ("image of the beast" is formed) just prior to the close of probation. All the issues in these prophecies will be agitated and prominently discussed world-wide.
- Babylon will not recognize her true condition and won't admit that God has left her ("for she saith in her heart, I sit a queen, and am no widow" - Rev. 18:7 ). But, God's true followers ("my people") in the midst of all these unfaithful churches will heed the final call to separate from Babylon ("come out of her") and join the end-time church (the remnant) in proclaiming these messages.
Our place in time is in the last part of the last time period of Revelation...
Prophecies are wrapping up. The signs of Jesus' coming are almost all checked off. Jesus sends these messages as an urgent, end-time imperative, because He loves you, not wanting any soul to miss eternal life with Him. Responding to His love is a delight, bringing peace and willing obedience through the miracle of a new heart.
There is little time left. It is critical to decide today to embrace the faith of Jesus and rely on His power to keep the commandments. This is an invitation to true worship; to love your Creator, humbly obey Him according to His Word, and show others what He is really like - His glorious character - beautiful, faultless and unmatched.
The 7th and last time period of Revelation (1840 to the Second Coming)
|THE THREE ANGELS' MESSAGES ARE GIVEN DURING THE 7TH TIME PERIOD OF REVELATION, AND THEY...
|...announce the judgment time of the 7th Church (Laodicea means "a people judged") and how to avoid being lukewarm (Rev. 3:14-22).
|...are the message that could be fully understood only after opening the 7th Seal (Rev. 6:14-8:1).
|...are the sounding of the 7th Trumpet, which is the last warning of pending judgment and instructions to escape.
|...contain the message of the 7 Thunders (1st and 2nd Angels' Messages preached 1842 -1844), which turned bitter because of misunderstanding, but then were to "prophesy again" (Rev. 10).
|...expose and counteract the specific errors promoted by the end-time rule of the 7th Head (and 8th).
|...are shared and lived by the remnant who "keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ" (Rev. 12:17).
Return to Seal of God (Rev. 14)