14:7 note g
Why does the angel tell us who to worship?
The object of our worship seems obvious. It's God. And there is only one true God (Deut. 6:4), but the angel doesn't simply say, "worship the true God." He is specific about who God is. He is calling us to get to know Him in a special way. Let's read the passage.
"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." (Rev. 14:6, 7)
The angel must have a reason for identifying God as the one who made all things. How do we worship God as Creator? Most scientists today believe that all life forms evolved over very long periods of time. A supernatural event such as a divine creation doesn't fit into their theories. If they can't explain it, they conclude that it must not be true. They forget that God is "past finding out."
As a creationist, I, and likely you, believe that the same God who made the universe also made the rules by which it operates. In other words, He controls the rules. They don't control Him.
"O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out! For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been his counsellor? Or who hath first given to him, and it shall be recompensed unto him again? For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen." (Rom. 11:33-36)
I praise God that no one now or ever, will be able to analyze Him by their own finite intelligence or be His provider. He is always greater. Our security is trusting in His love with the magnificent evidence of the cross. We can be confident that He who made us also sustains us.
And with this trust, how do we know He created all things? From what He tells us in the Scriptures. "By the word of the LORD were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth. . . . Let all the earth fear the LORD: let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of him. For he spake, and it was done; he commanded, and it stood fast." (Ps. 33:6-9)
"In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. . . . And the evening and the morning were the first day." (Gen. 1:1-5)
Each successive day God expanded His physical creation. At the end of the sixth day, the work was completed. As we read the account, we remember the words of the angel: ". . . worship Him that made heaven, and earth and the sea, and the fountains of waters."
Fountains of waters
This phrase in verse 7 is significant. I believe God wanted to catch our attention since it is different from the fourth commandment, the obvious source for the verse ex2011. The three angels fly with their messages of warning near the end of human probation on earth. They come before the great time of trouble and the return of Christ 1406b. This the message of this first angel points us back to the fountains of waters described in the account of creation pr0828 and the flood ge0711. God knew that His work of sending the flood would be doubted by many scientists. Pointing us to the great layers of rock formations, He warns us not to misinterpret the evidence. His coming destruction of the earth by fire 2pe0310 will be just as real as the destruction of the earth by the flood 2pe0303.
When the work
"Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them. And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made." (Gen. 2:1-3) ge0201.
During the time the descendants of Jacob were in Egypt, they had grown careless and had taken up the worship of the Egyptians (Josh. 24:14). To introduce the ten commandments God said, ". . . I am the LORD thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage." (Ex. 20:2). With the coming out was a renewal of true worship. One commandment carries a particular introduction. It begins with the word, "Remember." The requirement it explains was not new at Sinai (Ex. 16; 19:1; Gen. 2:1-3 ex1901; ge0201). The people had wandered away like lost sheep and needed to remember. Here is the commandment:
"Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates." (Ex. 20:8-10)
The commandment continues by declaring the authority of the one who gave it. "For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it." (v. 11)
Does this remind you of something about Rev. 14:7, the verse we are studying? Both tell us about the authority of God. Here's how the verse ends: ". . . worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters." So, in the end time, as the three angels give the last warning messages to a world about to be swept away by the beast power, this relationship with God will be especially important. How do we worship the one who made these things? The commandment tells us. We worship God as the one who created all in six days and lovingly requires that keep every seventh day as a sabbath rest.
We earlier noticed that the gospel preached by the angel is an everlasting one. That means it is not new. To accept the everlasting gospel is to # fear God, # to give Him glory, and # to worship Him. This means returning to neglected relationships with Him in these three ways, # by purity of heart and mind (fearing Him, Ps. 111:10); # by physical purity (glorifying Him in the body, (1 Cor. 6:20); and # by purity of worship — following the commandment He gave for remembering Him as creator. A table on the previous page shows these relationships and more.
Lord and the Holy Spirit is our authority. Please pray and dig into your
Bible. And thank you for listening so patiently.
14:7, note h
Isn't Sunday the Christian day of rest?
Many who read this will remember
hearing a passages that seem to justify disregarding the Sabbath. The usual
way is by discrediting the law. This conclusion obviously leaves us free
to break the other nine commandments as well. In attempting to save the
dam, someone explained to me that the principles of the nine commandments
are confirmed by the New Testament. Actually, the Sabbath commandment is
also confirmed. We discussed this in the past, but briefly, Jesus worshipped
on the Sabbath (Luke
4:16) and He revealed that He was Lord of the Sabbath (Mark
2:28) which identified Him as the Lord mentioned in the Sabbath commandment
(Ex. 20:8-11; Heb
13:8). In the passage quoted by Mark, He condemned the human restrictions
which were added to the commandment.
Several lines of thought support the idea that the law is no longer binding: (1) Since most ceremonial laws are no longer appropriate, it is assumed that we should regard the moral law of ten commandments the same way; (2) the example of New Testament Christians indicate an unrecorded change in the law; (3) law keeping is legalism; (4) the law is fulfilled in Christ.
Not long ago we discussed items 1 and 2. The legalism approach, # 3, is developed from verses which condemn seeking salvation by keeping the law. Let's look at an example. Paul explained that we are not saved by obedience to the law (Rom. 3:20). He must have realized that people would be apt to misunderstand because, in the next verse, he explains that the law was not made void.
Was the law fulfilled in Christ (# 4)? Jesus talked about fulfilling it but also pointed out that not even the smallest change would be made. "Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled." (Matt. 5:17, 18) Did Jesus fulfill the law? Yes, He paid the price demanded by the integrity of the law (1 Cor. 6:20). Was all fulfilled? No. For example, we still claim fulfillment of the promise of forgiveness from sins which the law defines (Heb. 7:25; 1 Cor. 15:3, 1 John 3:4). Have heaven and earth passed away? No.
In the statement just quoted, Jesus said He would not destroy the law. If His death resulted in making the law no longer binding, He would be doing what He promised not to do — to destroy the law. And if it could have been changed, His death would have been unnecessary and wrong.
Also, following the idea of Christ fulfilling the law, let's look at the verse alluded to in our last visit. "For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth." (Rom. 10:4). As I understand the argument, this verse is interpreted to mean that Christ is the end point of the law, and now that we have Him, the law is no longer binding. Thus we are free to disregard any part of it that seems seems unimportant for us.
What is the verse really saying? The word, "end," here is from the Greek, telos, which also means "goal." Paul was explaining that Christ is the goal of the law — the perfect model for our lives. Paul was discussing salvation by faith as opposed to seeking to be saved by keeping the law. The law describes righteousness (right doing, 1 John 3:7). In Christ we see our goal. He is the perfect standard described by the law. Only in and through Him are we lifted up to that standard (Eph. 2:1-7). What a magnificent privilege that we may be called the sons of God (1 John 3:1)! What incomprehensible love! What a wonderful Saviour!
14:7, note i
Why God said, Rest
So why did God say, "Thou
shall not do any work" on the Sabbath? He could have said, Do this or that
so the knowledge of obedience and of salvation will stick in your mind.
He could have had us repeat important phrases over and over. Instead He
gave us a whole day every week to not do — to simply rest in His
The word, Sabbath, is the Hebrew shabbath which is the intensive form of shabath (transliterated with one b), It means, to cease or to rest. In many languages, the name for the seventh day of the week is a form of shabbath. For example, Spanish for Saturday is Sábado.
Of course resting or stopping work gives time to commune with God. But it's more than a time we put into our weekly calendar. It's an appointment with our creator during the time He has made holy (Gen. 2:1-3). It's a time to receive the special Sabbath blessing He has promised for helping us live righteous lives (Ex. 31:12). Sabbath rest is a safeguard against a salvation-by-works attitude. All the glory is His.
Following the pattern God showed us after His six days of work in creation, He calls us to come into His special presence at the end of each week to restore and strengthen our relationship to Him. "Know ye that the LORD he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture." (Ps. 100:3)
Sabbath is not just a time to sleep or look out the window.
"If thou turn away thy foot from the sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on my holy day; and call the sabbath a delight, the holy of the LORD, honourable; and shalt honour him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking thine own words: Then shalt thou delight thyself in the LORD. . . ." (Isa. 58:13, 14). Also Nememiah 13 will give you some ideas.
The Sabbath is a time to enjoy the works of nature, to bring comfort to people and to relieve their suffering, as Jesus did. It is a time for worship and fellowship. It begins at sunset Friday and continues until sunset Saturday. (Lev. 23:32).
What a joy it is to relax in the love and security of our divine Shepherd!