The Closing Gospel Message
“And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice.” Rev. 14:9, first clause.
What apostasy from the worship of God is named in this message?
“If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand.” Rev. 14:9, last part.
What is to be the fate of those who, instead of worshiping God, engage in this false worship?
“The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of His indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb: and the smoke of their torment ascendeth up forever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name.” Rev. 14:10,11. See Isa. 33:13-17; 34:1-10; 1 Cor. 3:13; Heb. 12:29.
How are those described who heed this warning?
“Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.” Heb. 12:12.
What description is given of the beast against whose worship this closing warning message is given?
“And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy. And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion: and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority.” Rev. 13:1,2.
NOTE.-In this composite beast from the sea are combined the symbols of the seventh chapter of Daniel, representing Greece, Medo-Persia, and Babylon. The blasphemous words spoken by it, its persecution of the saints, and the time allotted to it (verses 5-7) show that this beast, under one of its seven-headed manifestations, is identical with the little horn of the vision of the seventh chapter of Daniel, modern Babylon, the Papacy. See reading on “The Kingdom and Work of Antichrist,” page 218. The false worship here mentioned, the worship of the beast, is the rendering of that homage to the Papacy which is due to God alone. The system of religion enforced by the Papacy is the paganism of Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece, and Rome, indicated by the composite character of the beast (verse 2), disguised under the forms and names of Christianity. The Pontifex Maximus of the ancient pagan religions was continued in the Pope, who is the head of the Roman priesthood, and who, in the exercise of his priestly functions, took away the mediation of Christ, and substituted a system of human mediation in its place, thus fulfilling the prophecy recorded in the eighth chapter of Daniel. See reading on “The Vicar of Christ,” The Vicar of Christ Study.
What challenge is made by those who worship the beast?
“And they worshiped the dragon which gave power unto the beast: and they worshiped the beast, saying, Who is like unto the beast? who is able to make war with him?” Rev. 13:4.
Whose sovereignty is thus challenged?
“Forasmuch as there is none like unto Thee, O Lord; Thou art great, and Thy name is great in might.” Jer. 10:6. See also Psa. 71:19; 86:8; 89:6,8.
What specifications of “the man of sin” are thus fully met?
“Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshiped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.” 2 Thess. 2:3,4. See Kingdom and Work of the Antichrist.
What did Babylon give to the nations to drink?
“She made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication.” Rev. 14:8, last part, See Fall of Modern Babylon Study.
What are those to drink who accept the teachings of Babylon, and thus render homage to the beast?
“The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of His indignation.” Rev. 14:10, first part.
NOTE.-The cup of the Lord, which contains the new covenant in the blood of Christ, and the cup of the wine of the wrath of Babylon are both offered to the world. To drink of the former, that is, to accept the teaching of the true gospel, is to receive everlasting life; but to drink of the wine of Babylon, that is, to accept the false gospel taught by the Papacy, will result in drinking of the wine of the wrath of God from the cup of His indignation. The true gospel means everlasting life; the false gospel means everlasting death.
Under what threatened penalty is the worship of the image of the beast enforced?
“And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause [decree] that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed.” Rev. 13:15.
NOTE.-For an explanation of the image of the beast, see reading on “Making an Image to the Beast,” Making An Image to the beast study.
What universal boycott is to be employed, in an attempt to compel all to receive the mark of the beast?
“And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads: and that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.” Rev. 13:16,17.
NOTE.-Regarding the mark of the beast, see reading on “The Seal of God and the Mark of Apostasy,” Chapter 98 of this book.
Who is the real power operating through the beast and his image, and demanding worship?
“The dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority.” Rev. 13:2, last part.
Who is this dragon?
“And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.” Rev. 12:9.
How did the devil seek to induce Jesus to worship him?
“And the devil, taking Him up into an high mountain, showed unto Him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time. And the devil said unto Him, All this power will I give Thee, and the glory of them: for that is delivered unto me; and to whomsoever I will I give it. If Thou therefore wilt worship me, all shall be Thine.” Luke 4:5-7.
How did Jesus show His loyalty to God?
“And Jesus answered and said unto him, Get thee behind Me, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and Him only shalt thou serve.” Luke 4:8.
NOTE.-The threefold message of Rev. 14:6-12 is proclaimed in connection with the closing scenes of the great controversy between Christ and Satan. Lucifer has sought to put himself in the place of God (Isa. 14:12-14), and to secure to himself the worship which is due God alone. The final test comes over the commandments of God. Those who acknowledge the supremacy of the beast by yielding obedience to the law of God as changed and enforced by the Papacy, when the real issue has been clearly defined, will, in so doing, worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark. Such will take the side of Satan in his rebellion against the authority of God.
How many will yield to the demand to worship the beast?
“And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.” Rev. 13:8.
In the judgment-hour message, whom are all called upon to fear, glorify, and worship?
“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. 14:7.
Who will sing the song of Moses and the Lamb on the sea of glass?
“And I saw as it were a sea of glass mingled with fire: and them that had gotten the victory over the beast, and over his image, and over his mark, and over the number of his name, stand on the sea of glass, having the harps of God. And they sing the song of Moses the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying, Great and marvelous are Thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are Thy ways, Thou King of saints. Who shall not fear Thee, O Lord, and glorify Thy name? for Thou only art holy: for all nations shall come and worship before Thee; for Thy judgments are made manifest.” Rev. 15:2-4.