The Revelation of John: Chapter 14 – Three Angels

28 Sep

I am continuing on with Revelation. In this series I have been comparing John’s vision with books with similar prophecies, such as Daniel, as well as section 77 of the Doctrine and Covenants, which gives interpretations to a selected portion of the images of the Revelation. I also rely heavily on the Joseph Smith Translation (JST – given in red).

See also chapter one,  two, three, four, five, first five seals, Sixth Seal I, Sixth Seal II, Seventh Seal Opens, First Four Trumpets, Fifth Trumpet, Sixth Trumpet, Ten, Witnesses, Seventh Trumpet, Twelve I, Twelve II, The Beast, The Mark

Revelation 14: 1-13

It has been a while since I posted on Revelation. My last posts dealt with chapter 13, concerning the Beast, the False Prophet, the Mark, and the number 666. these chapters were not too uplifting. After the warnings and woes of chapter thirteen, chapter 14 is one of hope and comfort for the faithful.

 

Verse 1

John sees Christ (the lamb) with 144,000 sitting on mount Zion. This event has yet to take place, as we read in D&C 33: 17-18 that it is about to be fulfilled. These are the same 144,000 that are recorded in chapter seven.

Verses 2-3

John now hears the voices of the 144,000 singing a new song that only they know. They are singing it to the four beasts, the 24 elders, and the throne of God. This song may be the same one recorded in D&C 84: 98-102.

Verses 4-5

These verses describe the 144,000. They are sexually pure and follow Christ in all things. They are without guile, or deceit. They are redeemed from among men and without fault before God. They are also the “firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb.” In D&C 88: 98 we read that the firstfruits are those who are caught up to meet Christ at his coming, and are thus inheritors of the Celestial Glory.

 

In the next few verses we read of three angels that come to the earth to deliver messages.

Verses 6-7

“And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel…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.”

Many equate this angel with Moroni, partly because of D&C 27:5 and 133:36–39. However, others see this as a composite of all those who participated in the restoration of the gospel. In either case it may appear that this event has already occurred. However, I am reminded on D&C 88, where we are told what will happen at the second coming. In verses 103-104 we read

“…the fifth angel who committeth the a everlasting gospel—flying through the midst of heaven…And this shall be the sound of his trump…saying: Fear God, and give glory to him who sitteth upon the throne, forever and ever; for the hour of his judgment is come.”

Verse 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.”

Babylon symbolizes the wicked and apostate world. The angel is declaring that wickedness will cease on the earth. The sin of fornication indicates that the wickedness is unfaithfulness to God. Drinking the wine means that this wickedness is internalized, or made a part or the people. The wickedness that has become part of the culture, which has resulted in the people being unfaithful to God, will end.

Again, this is very similar to D&C 88: 105

“…another angel shall sound his trump…saying: She is fallen who made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication; she is fallen, is fallen!”

Verses 9-11

“And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image…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…”

The judgment to come on those who worship the beast does not seem to be pleasant. The wine of the wrath of God is not poured out until after all else fails (D&C 43:25–26). For it to be without mixture means that it will not be diluted or lessened, but will come in full force on those who worship the beast.

Again, we turn to D&C 88: 106

“…, another angel shall sound his trump…saying: It is finished; it is finished! The Lamb of God hath overcome and trodden the winepress alone, even the wine-press of the fierceness of the wrath of Almighty God.”

 

In the last three sections I have given almost parallel verses from D&C 88, which talk of the second coming. This leads me to believe that these verses also speak of the second coming, or at least the time just prior to it. In my next post I will be discussing the rest of chapter 14 and you will more clearly why I think this is the case.

However, I want to include verses 12-13 in this post, so I will leave this question of timing for now.

 

Verse 12

The patience of the saints, which we read about in chapter 13, has been rewarded.

Verse 13

Some among the faithful will die in the final tribulations. However, their death is a blessing as it brings rest from those tribulations.

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