And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Sion, and with him an hundred forty and four thousand, having his Father’s name written in their foreheads. Revelation 14:1 KJV
As we move forward with the study of the book of Revelation we see in this first scripture there is a lamb on Mount Sion and 144,000 marked with the name of God the Father. So who are the 144,000?
* The 144,000 *
There are some religions that teach there will only be 144,000 saved out of the whole world. This is not true. What we are actually reading about is the 12,000 men from each of the 12 tribes of Israel. These are the direct descendants of the family. Further down you will see why they are special.
And I heard a voice from heaven, as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of a great thunder: and I heard the voice of harpers harping with their harps: (3) And they sung as it were a new song before the throne, and before the four beasts, and the elders: and no man could learn that song but the hundred and forty and four thousand, which were redeemed from the earth. Revelation 14:2-3 KJV
The Apostle John is seeing these 144,000 men from the 12 tribes of Israel singing before the throne of heaven, the four beasts and the elders, which only they knew the song.
These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb. Revelation 14:4 KJV
These people are considered virgins in the spiritual realm. It is not a literal meaning because these men were married and had children. They are pure, spotless, blameless and are the bride of Christ. When Jesus rose from the dead he was the firstfruit to God. The other people who rose from their graves during the Lord’s resurrection were also the firstfruits to God and to the Lord Jesus and that is who these 144,000 are.
But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept. 1 Corinthians 15:20 KJV
And in their mouth was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God. Revelation 14:5 KJV
They are standing blameless before the throne of God and this will happen to all those who are in Christ as well. There are the “adopted” children of God who will also stand before the throne of God blameless and pure.
* Proclamation of 3 Angels *
In this section of the chapter we will discover there are 3 angels that proclaim something different. The first angels tells us to fear God, give glory to him who created everything in heaven and on earth and sea. The second angel proclaims the great city of Babylon has fallen and the last angel proclaims anyone who worshipped the beast and his image, took the mark of the beast will receive the wrath of God.
And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, (7) 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. Revelation 14:6-7 KJV
* Second Angel *
And there followed another angel, saying, Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication. Revelation 14:8 KJV
This second angel announces the city of Babylon has fallen. Symbolically, in the Bible Babylon was a powerful but Godless city. We will go into more detail in the next chapter.
* Third Angel *
And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand, 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: Revelation 14:9-10 KJV
The third and last angel in this chapter announces if ANY man received the mark of the beast or participated in any other worship or sign that belongs to him will also receive the wrath of God. He will be tormented with fire in the presence of the angels and the Lord Jesus.
* The Smoke *
And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever 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. Revelation 14:11 KJV
The smoke of their burning bodies will rise up forever with no rest of the burning day or night.
Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus. And I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Write, Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: Yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them. Revelation 14:12-13 KJV
Until all these events are complete the saints must have patience, keep the commandments Jesus taught in Matthew 22:37, 39 and the faith of Jesus Christ. Those that die in the Lord are blessed and the work they did for the kingdom follows them. The last section of this chapter will focus on the harvest of the unbelievers that remained behind after the rapture occurred.
* Harvest of The Unbelievers *
And I looked, and behold a white cloud, and upon the cloud one sat like unto the Son of man, having on his head a golden crown, and in his hand a sharp sickle. Revelation 14:14 KJV
In this passage we see more imagery. We see Jesus on a cloud, he has a golden crown which we know means he is the king and in his hand he is holding a sickle. This is really a symbolic image even though what he will be doing is harvesting or gathering the weeds, so to speak. There is a scripture in Matthew in which Jesus spoke telling us he let the harvest and tares grow together but then he will gather them separately.
Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn. Matthew 13:30 KJV
And another angel came out of the temple, crying with a loud voice to him that sat on the cloud, Thrust in thy sickle, and reap: for the time is come for thee to reap; for the harvest of the earth is ripe. Revelation 14:15 KJV
The angel comes out of the temple and tells the Lord to go ahead and thrust his sickle to reap the harvest because it is ripe. If we recall from a harvest we know when something is ripe this means it is time to gather it.
And he that sat on the cloud thrust in his sickle on the earth; and the earth was reaped. Revelation 14:16 KJV
The Lord thrust his sickle and reaped the earth. He then gathered those who were not his. We know this because in a scripture further down it says they received God’s wrath. Those in Christ will not receive wrath.
And another angel came out of the temple which is in heaven, he also having a sharp sickle. Revelation 14:17 KJV
And another angel with a sickle came out of the temple in heaven.
And another angel came out from the altar, which had power over fire; and cried with a loud cry to him that had the sharp sickle, saying, Thrust in thy sharp sickle, and gather the clusters of the vine of the earth; for her grapes are fully ripe. Revelation 14:18 KJV
Another angel came out from the altar and had power over fire. This angel also called out to the Lord to thrust his sickle and gather the people who will be crushed. There really isn’t a nice way to put the meaning of this.
In the Old Testament in Deuteronomy 32:32 there is a reference to grapes that is not in a good way. The grapes were compared to the vines in Sodom and Gomorrah. The grapes were bitter and of gall. God has used grapes to signify wealth and prosperity but that is not the case here.
And the winepress was trodden without the city, and blood came out of the winepress, even unto the horse bridles, by the space of a thousand and six hundred furlongs. Revelation 14:20 KJV
In a wine press one adds grapes and on the other side the juice from the grapes comes out. In this scenario, the people (known as the tares in a previous scripture) will be crushed and blood came out as high as a horses bridle in a very long distance. We should take note that one does not mess with the Lord.
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