1. Chapter 15 is the shortest chapter in Revelation, but it is the introduction to the 7 vial/bowl judgments that we will get into in Chapter 16. What we are shown here, is what is happening in Heaven before these judgments fall on the Earth. Remember, there were 7 seals, of which the 7th contained 7 trumpet judgments. Of those trumpet judgments, the 7th contained the 7 vial/bowl judgments. Vial here as defined in the KJV is a short bowl used in pouring such as in the temple. Do not think of it as a vial such as some are used to in chemistry labs. The difference here being, the pouring from these short bowls will be quick and sudden.
2. We are told there is another sign shown in Heaven, this is the third of them. The first was the sun-clothed woman (Israel), the second was the great red dragon (Satan), and now we see 7 angels with the seven last plagues. Great is this sign in Heaven because the sheer awesomeness of these plagues destruction that will take place on an unrepentant world that still blasphemes the One True God.
3. We are then shown a second sea of glass. The first was in Revelation 4 and it was as crystal and smooth. This sea of glass is mingled with fire, and it represents humanity under judgment. But we are told there are some who stand above or upon the glass. These are the Tribulation Saints who overcome the Beast and his system. These are the ones martyred and lost their lives because they refuse to take the mark and refuse to denounce Jesus as their Savior. It reminds me of Jesus Christís words which hold true to us, the Body of Christ, today:
For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?
4. These saints sing two songs. The song of Moses, and the Song of the Lamb. The Song of Moses can be found in Exodus 15:1-19, and is a celebration of when Moses led the Israelites from Egypt and God drowned all of Pharaohís army in the sea as they tried to cross the sea as the Jews had. It is quite fitting here in the sense that although they have lost their lives, Jesus brings them through to eternal life, and out of the grasp of Satan, whom Jesus shall have victory over just as the victory over Pharaoh. Complete victory. The Song of the Lamb, is praise, honor, and glory going up to the One who is Worthy, He died to forgive our sins and take upon Him the wrath of God so we would not have to. His ways are just and true as are His judgments.
5. It is sad to see that most Christians today, donít have a true fear of GodÖof Jesus. And we should fear Him in the sense of respect and reverence, as well as fear of His capabilities and who He is! He alone is Holy, the only One to live by all Godís standards. He will be worshipped by all nations, EVERY knee shall bow. His judgments will come upon the world in wrath and those that refuse His mercy will be dealt with and sent to an everlasting Lake of Fire.
6. The temple of the tabernacle in which God dwells is opened, His testimony is there. This testimony would be His law and holy and righteous ways. The Law Moses gave was to reveal sin, and show man he could never work his own righteousness. For that there was Jesus, and all who reject him, will stand in judgment by these Holy Laws of which they will be unable to stack up to. Praise God for my savior Jesus!
7. Seven angels walk away from the Mercy Seat to bring judgment and their raiment or clothing signifies their righteousness. Each of these has one of the seven plagues, and to add more fuel to the fire, one of the four living creatures gives seven golden bowls filled with the wrath of God. Not only are plagues coming, but accompanied with the wrath of God!
8. These bowls or vials are similar to what priests used once a year on the Day of Atonement. Blood was poured over the Mercy Seat for atonement; it was released in quick fashion. This is a sign for all the Earth as these angels move away from Heavenís Mercy Seat. Christ fulfilled all atonement on that with His blood, but we are told that at this point, no-one else was able to enter in. there is left no more mercy. A Christ rejecting world that through all the other judgments still will blaspheme God, will have no mercy. Godís wrath is coming to them full force.
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