Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Revelation 10:1-7 Hidden and Revealed Word

KEY TEXT: Revelation 10:1-7 Then I saw another mighty angel coming down from heaven, wrapped in a cloud, with a rainbow over his head, and his face was like the sun, and his legs like pillars of fire. He had a little scroll open in his hand. And he set his right foot on the sea, and his left foot on the land, and called out with a loud voice, like a lion roaring. When he called out, the seven thunders sounded. And when the seven thunders had sounded, I was about to write, but I heard a voice from heaven saying, "Seal up what the seven thunders have said, and do not write it down." And the angel whom I saw standing on the sea and on the land raised his right hand to heaven and swore by him who lives forever and ever, who created heaven and what is in it, the earth and what is in it, and the sea and what is in it, that there would be no more delay, but that in the days of the trumpet call to be sounded by the seventh angel, the mystery of God would be fulfilled, just as he announced to his servants the prophets.

KEY THOT: Before the seventh trumpet was sounded, John saw a mighty angel wrapped in a cloud, his face shining like the sun with a rainbow over his head. His legs were like pillars of fire, his right foot standing on the sea while his left foot on the land. This angel had a  little scroll open in his hand. And he called out like a roaring lion and in a loud voice swore by the Creator-God that there should be no more delay. When he called out, seven thunders sounded but John was forbidden to record the message contained in those seven thunders. Some things are not meant to be revealed to us, but known to all in heaven. We have to content with partial truth and revelation, for even St. Paul acknowledges: "For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when the perfect comes, the partial will pass away" (1 Corinthians 13:9-10). We will have to be content with partial knowledge of the truth. What is revealed to us is for our obedience: "The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things that are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law" (Deuteronomy 29:29).

But what is of importance is what the angel said about the seventh trumpet to be blown: "but that in the days of the trumpet call to be sounded by the seventh angel, the mystery of God would be fulfilled, just as he announced to his servants the prophets" (v.7). The seventh trumpet will signal the end of this age which has been promised to God's servants and prophets throughout the age. Human history will end and a new age of God's rule in the new heaven and new earth will begin.

We must be careful not to waste our time speculating about things that God has not chosen to reveal to us. Instead, we should focus on obeying what God has already made plain to us and strive to obey God's commands contained in what has been revealed to us so that we may be aligned with the purpose of God described as the "mystery of God.. (to) be fulfilled" (v.7).

The book of Revelation was written not for us to speculate but to encourage us to persevere in times of trials and not compromise our faith when persecution comes.

Abba-Father, You are the Creator-God who knows everything. But You have not chosen to reveal everything to us but only what is relevant to us in our time. Even as Your revelation is partial, our obedience to that revelation must be complete. May You grant us grace to obey. Amen.

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