November 19, 2020

The Return of the King

Revelation 19

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Rejoicing in Heaven

After this I heard what seemed to be the loud voice of a great multitude in heaven, crying out,

  “Hallelujah!
  Salvation and glory and power belong to our God,
    for his judgments are true and just;
  for he has judged the great prostitute
    who corrupted the earth with her immorality,
  and has avenged on her the blood of his servants.”

Once more they cried out,

  “Hallelujah!
  The smoke from her goes up forever and ever.”

And the twenty-four elders and the four living creatures fell down and worshiped God who was seated on the throne, saying, “Amen. Hallelujah!” And from the throne came a voice saying,

  “Praise our God,
    all you his servants,
  you who fear him,
    small and great.”

The Marriage Supper of the Lamb

Then I heard what seemed to be the voice of a great multitude, like the roar of many waters and like the sound of mighty peals of thunder, crying out,

  “Hallelujah!
  For the Lord our God
    the Almighty reigns.
  Let us rejoice and exult
    and give him the glory,
  for the marriage of the Lamb has come,
    and his Bride has made herself ready;
  it was granted her to clothe herself
    with fine linen, bright and pure”—

for the fine linen is the righteous deeds of the saints.

And the angel said1 to me, “Write this: Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb.” And he said to me, “These are the true words of God.” 10 Then I fell down at his feet to worship him, but he said to me, “You must not do that! I am a fellow servant with you and your brothers who hold to the testimony of Jesus. Worship God.” For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.

The Rider on a White Horse

11 Then I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse! The one sitting on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he judges and makes war. 12 His eyes are like a flame of fire, and on his head are many diadems, and he has a name written that no one knows but himself. 13 He is clothed in a robe dipped in2 blood, and the name by which he is called is The Word of God. 14 And the armies of heaven, arrayed in fine linen, white and pure, were following him on white horses. 15 From his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations, and he will rule3 them with a rod of iron. He will tread the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God the Almighty. 16 On his robe and on his thigh he has a name written, King of kings and Lord of lords.

17 Then I saw an angel standing in the sun, and with a loud voice he called to all the birds that fly directly overhead, “Come, gather for the great supper of God, 18 to eat the flesh of kings, the flesh of captains, the flesh of mighty men, the flesh of horses and their riders, and the flesh of all men, both free and slave,4 both small and great.” 19 And I saw the beast and the kings of the earth with their armies gathered to make war against him who was sitting on the horse and against his army. 20 And the beast was captured, and with it the false prophet who in its presence5 had done the signs by which he deceived those who had received the mark of the beast and those who worshiped its image. These two were thrown alive into the lake of fire that burns with sulfur. 21 And the rest were slain by the sword that came from the mouth of him who was sitting on the horse, and all the birds were gorged with their flesh.

Footnotes

[1] 19:9 Greek he said
[2] 19:13 Some manuscripts sprinkled with
[3] 19:15 Greek shepherd
[4] 19:18 For the contextual rendering of the Greek word doulos, see Preface
[5] 19:20 Or on its behalf

The Return of the King



Key Verse | Revelation 19:11-12

Then I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse! The one sitting on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he judges and makes war. His eyes are like a flame of fire, and on his head are many diadems, and he has a name written that no one knows but himself.

Bio | Madison McGill

Hi, y'all! I'm Madison McGill. Throughout the week, you can find me serving with Starting Blocks or leading a table at Equipped Disciple, where I get to help others learn the basics of a relationship with God. I love seeing others grasp these basics, as they have transformed my own walk with Christ—whether through crafts and songs or spiritual disciplines.

Fun facts: I grew up raising pigs in Oklahoma, can operate most heavy machinery (thanks, Dad!), and was blessed with the opportunity to stay in the great State of Texas after spending four years in Waco—Sic 'em Bears!

Central Truth

Jesus will keep His promise to return. And when He does, it will be glorious, swift, and triumphant.

Devotional | Revelation 19

The first thing that comes to mind when reading Revelation 19 is when Gandalf arrives at the Battle of Helm's Deep in The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers. Things are looking grim for the good guys as they seem...

The first thing that comes to mind when reading Revelation 19 is when Gandalf arrives at the Battle of Helm's Deep in The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers. Things are looking grim for the good guys as they seem to be overwhelmed by the sheer magnitude of evil Uruk-hai breaking down the walls. However, it is one of my favorite climactic moments in any movie as our heroes make a last charge through their attackers and dawn arrives. Just as he had promised five days previously, Gandalf arrives in the east on his white horse accompanied by the Riders of Rohan to save the day. Makes you want to cheer, right?

The arrival of a hero in a movie to save the day pales in comparison to the return of our King of Kings and Lord of Lords. As followers of Christ, we have even more to celebrate and rejoice in as we trust in the promise that Christ will return (Acts 1:11). Revelation 19 tells of the glorious fulfillment of this promise and how Christ will capture the beast and false prophet, throw them into the lake of fire, and slay the kings and armies gathered together to make war against the rider and His armies of heaven. Nothing can stand a chance against the Word of God. 

Even though He is not mentioned by name, we can identify the rider on the white horse as Jesus Christ as He is the faithful and true witness (Revelation 1:5). We look forward to Christ's return, because it signals that the end of the suffering, tribulation, and deception this world has been embroiled in is near. Jesus already defeated sin and death (1 Corinthians 15:55-57). Revelation 19 reminds us that the ultimate victory over evil belongs to Him, and nothing is too big or terrifying for the Lord to handle. We do not know exactly when He will return, but we do know that the Lord is righteous and sovereign and that He always keeps His promises. May we let those truths inform our thoughts and actions daily.

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Discussion Questions

1. One day the heavens will pass away with a roar, but until then, the Lord is patient, wishing all to reach repentance (2 Peter 3:9-10). Have you received the free gift of eternal life by confessing Jesus as Lord and believing God raised Him from the dead (Romans 10:9-10)? If so, how does the hope you have in Christ inform your day-to-day living? If not, I invite you to reflect on Romans 6:23 and 1 Peter 3:18. 

2. Did the last time you felt overwhelmed by something (circumstances, temptation, sin) drive you to return to the Lord? Read 1 Corinthians 10:13.

3. What are some areas of your life in which you have seen God display His faithfulness and keep His promises? Read Psalm 111:7-8. How can you remember this faithfulness the next time you face trials?

4. Are you in consistent fellowship with other believers? Read Hebrews 10:24-25. What is one thing you could do today to encourage someone "to love and good works"? Don't just think of it; do it!

8 Comments available

Michael Scaman 16 days ago

When Babylon failed "The smoke from her goes up forever and ever.”

The same was said already in Rev 14:11 and is a reminder of those who go into the lake of fire, literally ‘the smoke of their torment rises into the ages of the ages’

Michael Scaman 16 days ago

The rider on the white horse will rule with a rod of iron. This was also promised to the church in the letters to the churches early in Revelation Ruling with a rod of iron over the nations was promised to the Son in Psalm 2 (a promise spilling over to the church which is in Christ)

I like the scene in the series ‘The Chosen’ where SPOILER ALERT Nicodemus kneels and kisses Jesus hand saying from Psalm 2 ‘kiss the Son lest he be angry and you perish in His way’ and Jesus answers, continuing with Psalm 2 'Blessed are those who take refuge in Him"

Hope Harris 16 days ago

Part 1

Bare with me as attempt to post this morning. Todays chapter reminded me of a conversation I was a part of one person stated that life is not good. On one level I agree life is hard difficult at times.

As I read through todays passage I am reminded my life is so much better because I know Jesus.

Pre-Christ I was woman living deep in the Babylonian culture seeking to find wholeness and completeness through relationships with other women. I worshiped the created rather than the creator.

I was consumed by my sexual identity and lost my sense of self all together in my last relationship. Life had lost all meaning and purpose for me I was at the end of myself.

Since surrendering my life to Christ almost 12 years ago on a physical and economical level life has been hard and difficult.

Sue Bohlin 16 days ago

Thank you, Madison!

Since one of my favorite identities is “God’s Party Girl,” I just LOVE today’s reference to the Marriage Feast of the Lamb! It will be the party to end all parties!

I also loved this: “his Bride has made herself ready.” It’s a call to the Lamb’s future bride to be proactive in preparing ourselves for not just the Wedding, but the privilege of reigning with Jesus (Revelation 22:5, 2 Timothy 2:12).

There is no “coasting” in the Christian life! We need to be continually engaged in the spiritual disciplines of submitting ourselves to God, cooperating with the Holy Spirit as He develops Christlikeness in us.

That’s why I am so grateful to be in Step 10 of re:generation, which is so much more than a recovery ministry–it’s a powerful discipleship program. God is using it to help me “make myself ready” for the future Wedding.

Hope Harris 16 days ago

Part 2

On spiritual level Life has become better, because in Christ, I have hope, peace, and security. I have discovered my true self a woman made in the image of God, a daughter of the King.

Verses 6-10 caused me to celebrate this morning because:

God has made a place for me at His Table.

That I am invited to the Marriage Supper of the Lamb.

That “Life is Good” because I have a better hope than anything Babylon can offer: an ultimate deliverance, a decisive victory, a spectacular wedding, and a secure home."

I join with the heavenly chorus and declare, “Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!” (Revelation 5:12).

Greg Jones 16 days ago

Really enjoyed the reference to Lord of the Rings.

Revelation 14:17-20 speaks of two angels, one has sickle the other is in charge of the fire. Before that in verses 9-10 is a warning not to worship the beast or you will drink from the cup of God’s wrath and be tormented with burning sulfur in presence of the holy angels and the Lamb.

Verse 10 John begins worshiping an angel and is told to stop. “Worship God”he is told, “ For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.”

I have trouble aligning the the testimony of Jesus and a great banquet with birds eating the dead flesh of people. But in the context of “worship God” I can see the “spirit” of this prophecy.

Hope Harris 16 days ago

Sorry I made the post make since can’t seem to delete this

Hugh Stephenson 17 days ago

A friend notes that the two main questions asked in evangelism are some version of “Why do bad things happen to good people” and “Why do good things happen to bad people.”

I am convicted that I define “good” and “bad” in my terms. An eternal focus yields very different definitions and the real judgement that is to come to all; (Matthew 7:1, Romans 12:19)

I have a different question; “Many days I am sick and tired of this world. Can Jesus please come back today?”

I accept the selfishness of this request.

With many unsaved friends and family members I should want His return to be delayed as long as imaginable. I link to 2 Peter 3:9-10.

Further, I am taught that His patience today does not guarantee His patience tomorrow – for one day there will be judgement, (Matthew 7:1, Romans 12:19)

Still, Jesus, please come soon.

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