Revelation 15

Chapter 15 and 16 go together and speak of the last seven plagues. These seven plagues are the bowls that contain the wrath of God "mixed unmixed." Chapter 15 has two visions: 1)  The victors in heaven 2)  The angels with the seven bowls. Chapter 15 and 16 bring the chronological order of events up to the return of Christ. The chronological order of events are presented in the seven seals The seventh seal are the seven trumpets The seventh trumpet are the seven bowls. They occur as a crescendo of disasters. These Sections do not advance Chronologically 10:1 through 11:14—Angel and the little scroll and the two witnesses Chapters 13 and 14—The Beast of the Sea, the Beast of the Land, 144,000 w/ Lamb on Zion Chapters 17-19—The Woman on the Beast and the Fall of Babylon 15:1  "I was in heaven another great and marvelous sign:  seven angels with the seven last plagues - last, because with them God's wrath is completed." This verse introduces chapters 15 and 16. The first two "great signs" were the woman and the dragon in 12:1 and 12:3. The wrath of God will be complete with the pouring of these bowls. The is still yet to come Armageddon, sheep and goat judgment, the 1000 year iron rule of Christ, the great white throne judgment, etc.  So this does not mean God is done judging. The wrath of God began in 6:17 "For the great day of their wrath has come, and who can stand?"   The seven bowls will complete what began in 6:17. Before the seals where opened in chapter 6, Revelation 4 and 5 describe the scene in heaven before those events took place. The same is true before the trumpets where sounded in 8:7 there are details of heaven in 8:1-6 and even before that in chapter 7:9-17. Now before the bowls are poured out in chapter 16 we are shown a scene in heaven in chapter 15. The word for "plagues" is the word "plege" (plhgh) and it means "blow, wound, plague."   It is used in Luke 12:48; Acts 16:23, 33; 2 Corinthians 6:5; 11:23.  In Revelation 13:3, 12 "plhgh" refers to the beast's fatal wound. These are not necessarily diseases or epidemics but include blows or wounds that kill people. By saying they are the "last plagues" or the seven last blows indicate that the seals and the trumpets where also "plagues" or "blows" of the God's wrath. Although they have not been called that. Revelation has spoken of this final and great outpouring of wrath several times: 6:17 "The great day of their wrath has come, and who can stand?" 11:14, “The second woe has passed; the third woe is coming soon.” (These bowls are the third woe, or the seventh trumpet.) 11:18,”your wrath has come.” 14:10, “the wine of God’s fury, which has been poured full strength into cup of his wrath.” 14:14-16, the harvest of the wheat 14:17-20, the harvest of the grapes Zephaniah spoke of this day in Zephaniah 3:8: " 'Therefore wait for me,' declares the Lord, 'for the day I will stand up to testify (or, 'rise up to plunder'). I have decided to assemble the nations, to gather the kingdoms and to pour out my wrath on them - all my fierce anger.  The whole world will be consumed by the fire of my jealous anger.' " The concept of “filled up” (etelesthe) means “to bring to conclusion, to complete.” It is in the aorist indicative passive show that this time came passively because God controls history. It is he who will conclude these events. It is used of the fulfillment of OT prophecy or the fulfillment of the Word of God 15:2 “And I saw what looked like a sea of glass mixed with fire and, standing beside the sea those who had been victorious over the beast and his image and over the number of his name. The glassy sea show us that this is once again a scene in the throne-room of heaven The sea is said to be crystal and reflects the holiness of God in chapter 4. Now coming from that holiness is fire. Fire indicates the judgment of God The saints are standing upon that sea. The word is “epi” The victors have been delivered from the antichrist by death. All of these have been saved during the tribulation The Antichrist made war against them (13:7) and overcame, but his overcoming them and their remaining faithful resulted in them being the victors and he the soon to be loser. 15:2 “They held harps given them by God. These harps indicate they are rejoicing, celebrating and praising God. God gave them harps to express their joy. 15:3 And sang the song of Moses the servant of God and the song of the Lamb Because each song has an article it is likely they are singing two songs. One of Moses and a second of the Lamb The genitive could mean the song of the Lamb is a song about the Lamb. The song of Moses is in Exodus 15 and is the first song recorded in the OT These have seen God’s faithfulness and have triumphed in their deaths The song of Moses spoke of two things: 1) The deliverance and victory for the righteous 2) Judgment and wrath of God toward his enemies, those who pursued the righteous. The song of the Lamb is found in Revelation 5. The words recorded here do not match either song but are familiar OT themes: 15:3, 4 Great and marvelous are your deeds, Lord God Almighty Psalm 139:14 Just and true are your ways, King of the ages Revelation 1:8; 4:8; 11:17; 16:7; 16:14; 19:6; 19:15; 21:22; Dt. 32:4 Who will not fear you , O Lord, Jeremiah 10:7; Ps 86:9 And bring glory to your name? For you alone are holy 1 Sam.2:2; Ps 22:3; 99:5, 9; 111:9; Isaiah 6:3; 57: 15; Hab. 1:12 All nations will come and worship before you, Psalm 86:9; Jer. 10:7, Psalm 66:4; Zech.14:16 For your righteous acts have been revealed.” Judges 5:11; 1 Sam. 12:7; Ps. 103:6; Dan. 9:16; Micah 6:5 15: 5 the temple, the holy of holies, opened Attention goes away from the rejoicing redeemed to the judgment of God The Greek word “naoV” refers to the inner holy place of the Tabernacle. The expression “the tabernacle of the testimony” refers to the tent structure with the tables, the lampstand the ten commandments all that gave testimony to God and his covenant 15:6 came the seven angels with seven plagues White indicates holiness and righteous deeds. What the angels are about to do is a righteous deed. Gold indicates the glory of God. What the angels are about to do will bring glory to God. The golden sash would be a wide belt which held u the long flowing garments. The angels emerge with the plagues before they have the bowls. It is possible that these 7 angels where prepared for these plagues or blows to the earth. The only thing they where missing was the vessel to place their plague in. The vessel or bowl is now ready. The wrath of God is the reason these angels will be released on the earth. 15:7 one of the four living creatures gave to the seven angels seven golden bowls filled with the wrath of God One of the cherubim gives the angels the bowls. “Phialas” is the Greek word. This is a wide shallow bowl like a deep saucer These bowls where used in the temple ministry for offerings and incense They could be a large banquet bowl for wine (Amos 6:6) or more likely it was a ritual bowl for collecting the blood of the sacrifices (Ex.27:3) 15:8 temple was filled with smoke—glory of God and power of God 15:8 No one could enter the temple until the seven plagues of the seven angels were completed. See 16:17 Isaiah 6:4 Ex 40:34, 1 Kings 8:10-11; Ezek 11:23; 44:4 Smoke indicates God is on the move