God finally takes vengeance on those who have despised Him.
This final part of our mini-series covers the events described in Revelation 19:11-20:3.
If you missed Part 1 in this mini-series, click here.
Today we complete our brief look at the Second Coming. God’s days of grace and mercy are past. Now Christ comes in righteousness and justice. Through Christ, the wrongs of thousands of years are about to be made right.
In His role as the executor of God’s wrath in that day, Christ is given four names: “Faithful and True, an unknown name, The “Word of God,” and “King of Kings.” Finally, Christ’s saints see the awesome reality of names for Christ that they knew but didn’t yet fully appreciate. As they fight side by side with Him against His enemies, they finally see Him as His names describe.
God’s wrath culminates in a war for the ages as God uses Christ, along with His army and the host of heaven, to execute His long-awaited wrath against His enemies. Satan and his millions of fallen angels had been defeated by Michael (the archangel) and cast down to earth (Rev. 12) where they directed the Antichrist (also known as the Beast) and the false prophet to bring the kings of the whole world against Christ and His army (raptured and glorified believers). They quickly discover that all their manpower, weaponry, and cunning plans are no match for a simple word from Christ. God will fulfill His promise to make Christ’s enemies a footstool for His feet (Ps. 110:1) by the stupendous and sudden exercise of His power in wrath through His Son.
In what is known as the Battle of Armageddon, the blood of millions upon millions will be poured out even to the bridles of the horses—carnage beyond anything we can imagine. A multitude of birds is treated to a feast of the dead bodies of those who had made the fatal mistake of declaring all-out war on the King of Kings, His army clothed in white, and all the hosts of heaven. A battle of hell against heaven takes place in the valley of Megiddo just southeast of Mt. Carmel.
This is just the beginning of God’s great day of vengeance. The Antichrist and the false prophet are cast alive into the lake of fire (also called Gehenna), a place outside the earth and different from and more horrible than hell (Hades, Sheol). Satan, the evil mastermind behind all the rebellion is so weakened that a single angel (not even Michael) chains him and casts him into the abyss (the pit in the heart of the earth) where he remains for a thousand years.
The Wheat and the Tares
At the same time, all those around the earth who have despised and refused the invitation to the heavenly marriage supper of the Lamb (through salvation) are experiencing a “rapture” of a different nature than the Rapture of believers. This is when the event prophesied in the parable of the wheat and the tares (Mt. 13:24-30) takes place. The time has come for the tares (unbelievers) to be separated from the wheat (believers). The Son of Man will send forth His angels, and they will gather out of His Kingdom all stumbling blocks and those who commit lawlessness. They are then cast into the furnace of fire where there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth (Matt. 13:40-42).
This is also described in Matthew 24:40-41 and Luke 17:34-35. These passages tell of two people who are together, but one (an unbeliever) is snatched away by an angel to eternal torment while the other (a believer) is left to inhabit the coming Millennial Kingdom on earth (after it has been cleansed and restored).
I hope this brief series has cleared up a little of the confusion for you. While it summarizes what I feel are the main events encompassed within Christ’s Second Coming, I hope it offers hope as we are reminded that God has the final say and we see Christ the Suffering Servant give way to Christ the Conquering King. I am indebted to William Newell whose commentary on the book of Revelation has cleared up a lot of my own confusion.
ON THE LIGHTER SIDE
Joe Biden’s version of old sayings:
The pen is mightier than the early bird.
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