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Revelation: Chapter 19

Setting

As seen in the chronology of Revelation, John is viewing all of these many events from several vantage points, in heaven, on earth, the bottomless pit, and the lake of fire.  The events of this chapter are also contemporary with those described in the page on this site describing Revelation 16, which covers the pouring out of the seven bowls, and Revelation 18, which describes the final and complete destruction of commercial Babylon.

This chapter brings us to the end of the tribulation period. There are several events described in Revelation 19 that cover the period from the rapture to Christís return, when He conquers all of His enemies and establishes His millennial kingdom. At the very end of the tribulation are four distinct events that sound the end of the tribulation;

  • The pouring out of the 7th bowl of Godís wrath on the world, Revelation 16
  • The cup of Godís wrath given to the destruction of commercial Babylon, Revelation 18
  • The battle of Armageddon with the 200,000,000 man army, Revelation 19
  •   Jesus Christís return when He places His feet on the Mount of Olives, Zechariah 14:3-4  

It is anticipated, and an opinion, that these four events will occur in rapid sequence, possibly in a matter of weeks, with the battle of Armageddon concluded within a short moment, and the order of events as presented are also an opinion.

Outline of this chapter

Verses Topic
1-6 The great praises to God
7-9 The bride of Christ and the wedding preparation
10 John's reaction to all these events
11-16 The return of the King of kings
17-18 The call to all the birds to their feast
19-21 The battle of Armageddon

The great praises to God     Chapter Outline     Top

In Revelation 19:1, the term "after these things" is again used, but in a different way than described in Revelation 4:1.   In this case, it announces the end of the seven years of tribulation, since the pouring out of the seventh bowl judgment on earth, Revelation 16, Revelation 17, and Revelation 18 and Revelation 19.  This chapter provides important highlights on key elements that were not captured in the previous chapters on the tribulation.  The events concerning commercial Babylon in Revelation 18 (Revelation 18:1, after these things), followed those events described in Revelation 17, which was all about the harlot mystery Babylon.  The events in Revelation 19:1-2 follow the destruction of Commercial Babylon.  John also reports that he heard the sounded of a roar from a great multitude in heaven shouting ďHallelujah,Ē which is a transliteration from Hebrew meaning, ďPraise the Lord!Ē  This is the time that the whole creation has looked forward to since the fall of Adam, Romans 8:18-25.

Ö"Salvation and glory and power belong to our God".  The key to the identity of the multitude singing this "Hallelujah" chorus is found in these last few words in Revelation 19:1.  Who but the saints of the Lord could shout out the praise for the salvation that the Lord gave to mankind?   Godís glory is evident throughout scripture and its usage is shown in the Blue Letter Bible.  Godís power has likewise been demonstrated throughout scripture and its usage is likewise shown in the Blue Letter Bible.  

In Revelation 19:2-3, the saints in heaven continue to shout the praises of God.  They acknowledge and witness the truth and righteousness of God's judgments against the earth and mankind, now that the judgments have ended.  The highlight of this praise was Godís judgment against the harlot, Babylon, which corrupted the earth by her adulteries.  God also avenged the blood of His servants.  Recall that all saints of God are instructed to put aside vengeance, for it is the Lordís, Romans 12:19-21, Luke 18:7-8.  Also, the tribulations saints who were before the throne, and who asked God when their blood would be avenged, have finally seen this occur, Revelation 6:9-11. They shout out again the praise as a witness of Godís vengeance for His saints in that the smoke from Babylonís demise will go up forever and ever.

In Revelation 19:4-5, there are several shouts of praise that emanate from heaven.  The 24 elders and the four living creatures fall down and worship God, endorsing the praise of all the saints.  A voice came from the throne, which is arguably the Holy Spirit, John 16:13-14, saying to all saying ďPraise our God, all servants who fear Him, both small and great."   Another voice was heard, which is arguably the Son, Jesus Christ, John 12:27-28, Revelation 1:12-15, Revelation 14:1-2, shouts saying ďHallelujah!, For our Lord God Almighty reigns.Ē

The bride of Christ and the wedding preparation     Chapter Outline     Top

In Revelation 19:7-8, an announcement is made concerning the bride of Christ.  Revelation 19:6 indicates that there was a great multitude with Christ, whose identity is found in Revelation 7:9-17.  These are the tribulation saints, Revelation 7:14.  They are ever before the Lamb, Revelation 7:15a, and they serve the Lamb day and tight in His temple, Revelation 7:15b.  It is arguably the tribulation saints who are shouting out to the heavenly hosts, Psalms 134:1-3, "To rejoice and be glad, and Give glory to God".  They announce that the wedding of the Lamb has come.  The bride has made herself ready, which is the church, not the tribulation saints, Ephesians 2:10, Ephesians 5:25-27.  The bride is dressed in fine linen, which stands for the righteous acts of the saints.

The wedding depicted in this chapter was put in motion almost two thousand years ago by the Lord Jesus Christ and the work He did on all mankindís behalf on the cross.  He established the new covenant, and founded the church to become His bride.  John the Baptist was the one to declare this relationship between the groom and the bride, John 3:26-30.  The Lord also mentioned this, Matthew 9:14-15.  The betrothal custom of the Jews during the Lord's first advent parallels the events of Christ, His church, the rapture, His millennial reign, the new heaven, new earth, and new Jerusalem, as shown in the following process:

  • The man would find the one to marry, John 15:16-17
  • A bride's price with a marriage contract, Luke 22:14-19
  • Drink the cup wine, Luke 22:20
  • The decision was the womanís to drink, accepting the new covenant with Christ, or not and reject His offer and free gift.
  • The man would leave and prepare a place as a bridal chamber, John 14:1-4
  • Only the groomís father determines when the bridal chamber is completed, Mark 13:32-37.
  • During that time, the woman would wear a veil as a woman waiting for her husband 2Corinthians 1:21-22
  • She would keep an oil lamp trimmed if he came like a thief in the night, Luke 12:37-40
  • She is now set apart, and bought with a price, 1Corinthians 6:19
  • When the wedding party was close enough to the brideís house, someone had to shout, 1Thessalonians 4:14-18

In Revelation 19:9, those who are invited to the wedding supper of the Lamb are blessed.  

 

Verse in Revelation

Blessing
1
Blessed are those who read, hear, and do what is written in this prophecy
2
Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on
3
Blessed is he who stays awake and keeps his clothes on him
4
Blessed are those who are invited to the wedding supper of the Lamb
5
Blessed and holy are those who have part in the first resurrection
6
Blessed is he who keeps the words of the prophecy in this book
7
Blessed are those who wash their robes that they may the right to the tree of life and go through the gates into the city

This is mostly likely a millennial long celebration and supper, since a thousand years is as one day, 2Peter 3:8.  This is the time that the Lord spoke about during his Olivet Discourse concerning the 10 virgins, Matthew 25:1-13.  Five were prepared for the Lordís return at any moment, whereas the other five did not have sufficient oil for the night nor trimmed the wicks of their lamps.  Only the five wise virgins were allowed into the wedding banquet, the others who arrived late were not allowed in.  The Lord also described this event at another time concerning the wedding banquet and the invitees who were unwilling to attend, and so he went out to the people and invited them.  Only one appeared without a wedding garment, and he was kicked out, Matthew 22:1-14.  Finally, in the Psalms there is mention of the Lordís Queen, Psalms 45:9

John's reaction to all these events     Chapter Outline     Top

In Revelation 19:10, John must have been completely overwhelmed to hear and see these heavenly sights.  To hear the great noise of all of the hosts in heaven shouting out the praises to God, and hearing the shouts of praise to the Father from the throne itself had to of been an unimaginable experience.  Then, in seeing the preparation of the bride of Christ, Johnís reaction was incomprehensible exultation, and he fell at the feet of the angel to worship him.  John was immediately rebuked for this misplaced worship.  This is the same angel whom the Lord had sent to John to give what the Father had given Him, the revelation of Jesus Christ, Revelation 1:1.  The angel corrects John immediately, and identifies himself as a fellow servant with the testimony of Jesus.  He then instructs John to worship God.

The angel also states that the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy, which began immediately after the fall of Adam, and upon the judgment of God.  The first of the prophecies to mankind was Godís plan of salvation to bring about a new relationship with the Lord.  This was to be brought about through the womanís seed, Genesis 3:14-15.  Everything between that passage to the end of the book of Revelation is all about Jesus Christ, and restoring Godís relationship with mankind that was ruined by sin.  Remember, the book of Revelation was given by God to His Son, Jesus Christ, who then gave the revelation to His angel to give to John, Revelation 1:1.  Jesus Christ is the center of scripture and prophesy.

Return of the King of kings     Chapter Outline     Top

In Revelation 19:11, John now sees heaven open and before him was Christ on a white horse.  This is similar to the time that John saw the door open to heaven and he was called up to view the events that followed the church age, the tribulation, Revelation 4:1.  Now John sees heaven open up again, but this time it is to let the Lord and His army return to earth, rather than to call John (and the church) to His presence.  This second time that heaven is opened, which signifies the end of the tribulation and the beginning of the millennial reign of Jesus Christ.  Another important point to establish is that this white horse and its rider are not the same as the white horse described by the opening of the first seal, Revelation 6:1-2.  The opening of the first seal revealed the Antichrist as a false peace giver who was bent on conquest.  However, here in Revelation 19:11, Christ is shown in this chapter as Faithful and True.  Christ is judges with righteousness and makes war upon the unrighteous.

In Revelation 19:12-13, John describes how he now views the Lord as He returns to the world.  John observes the victorious Christ returning to a rebellious world to establish His rule over the whole world.  In contrast, when John first saw the glorified Christ at the beginning of the revelation, John did not see the Lord prepared for battle against His enemies, he saw the glorified Christ among the candles that represent the church, Revelation 1:12-14. At that time he observed the Lord:

In Revelation 19, John sees Christ:

In Revelation 19:14, the armies of heaven follow the Lord, and they are also riding on white horses and dressed in fine linen.  These are the saints of the Lord.  

In Revelation 19:15-16, a sharp sword extends out of the Lordís mouth to strike down the nations.  With the breath of His lips, He will slay the wicked, Isaiah 11:4, and He will consume with the spirit of his mouth, and destroy His enemies with the brightness of His coming, 2Thessalonians 2:7-8.  This is similar to an event at the arrest of Jesus, when those who were sent to arrest Jesus, and they fell down at just the Lord's response, I am He, John 18:4-9.  

There is a great deal of descriptive language used in scripture concerning all the aspects of the judgment that is executed at the Lord's return.  Some of what has been written is:

  • He treads the winepress that is the fury of the wrath of God Almighty, Isaiah 63:1-6, Joel 3:12-17.  
  • The Lord alone treads the winepress in His anger, and treads down His enemies in His wrath.  
  • The blood of His enemies spatters His garments, and stains all His clothing.  
  • The Lord pours out the blood of His enemies on the ground.  

It is the Lord who will do the fighting, since only His clothes are stained with blood. The Saintís clothing is fine linen, white and clean.  The Lord's authority over the world is written on His robe and thigh: King of kings and Lord of lords.  The Lord will rule the world with an iron scepter, Psalm 2:6-9, since the world during His millennial reign will be populated by believing and unbelieving individuals. Following the battle of Armageddon, the Lord will give the rule over His kingdom to His saints, the people of the Most High, Daniel 7:22, Daniel 7:26-27, and to His church, Revelation 2:24-27.

The call to the birds to feast     Chapter Outline     Top

In Revelation 19:17-18, John now sees an angel standing in the sun. He cries out to all the birds flying. They are to gather together to eat the flesh of the mighty and the low, all who came to battle against the Lord. There is no respect of person in this carnage. This is similar to the invitation to the birds to feed on the flesh of the invading armies into Northern Israel in Ezekiel 38-39, Ezekiel 39:17-20.

The battle of Armageddon     Chapter Outline     Top

In Revelation 19:19-21, John now sees the beast (Antichrist) and the kings of the earth and their armies gathered together to make war against the Lord.  Recall with the pouring out of the sixth bowl, that the river Euphrates was dried up to facilitate the movement westward of the 200,000,000 man army. At that time, Satan, the Antichrist, and the false prophet were seen spewing out frogs from their mouths, to gather the kings of the whole world to battle against the Lord, Revelation 16:12-14.  The Antichrist and false prophet were captured and thrown alive into the lake of fire and sulfur, Revelation 14:9-11. The rest of those in the armies will be killed by the sword of the Lordís mouth, and none survived. There will be no POWs or refugees, only a 100% casualty rate on the side of the Lordís enemies.  


Copyright (c) 2001, 2005, 2008, 2014, J.E. Huntley.  All rights reserved.
last edited August 2014

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