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Heaven Opened (Revelation 15,16)

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Revelation 16

The seven bowls
And I heard a great voice out of the temple, saying to the seven angels: Go and pour out the seven bowls of the anger of God into the earth. 2 Harmful and painful sores came upon the people who bore the mark of the beast and worshiped its image.
   3 And the second poured out his bowl into the sea; and it became like the blood of a dead man, and every living thing died, even the things that were in the sea.
   4 And the third poured out his bowl into the rivers and the fountains of the waters, and they became blood.
   5 And I heard the angel of the waters saying: Righteous are You, who is and who was, You Holy One, because You did thus judge. 6 For they poured out the blood of the saints and the prophets, and blood have You given them to drink. They are worthy. 7 And I heard another angel out of the altar saying: Yes, O Lord God the Almighty, true and righteous are Your judgments.
   8 And the fourth poured out his bowl upon the sun; and it was given to it to scorch men with fire. 9 And men were scorched with great heat, and they cursed the Name of God who has the power over these plagues, and they did not repent and give Him glory.
   10 And the fifth poured out his bowl upon the throne of the beast, and his kingdom was darkened; and they gnawed their tongues for pain because of the pain. 11 They cursed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores, and they did not repent of their deeds.
   12 And the sixth poured out his bowl upon the great river, the Euphrates, and the water of it dried up, so that the way might be made ready for the kings that come from the east.
   13 And I saw coming out of the mouth of the dragon, and out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet, three unclean spirits, that looked like frogs. 14 For they are spirits of demons, who work signs. These go to the kings of the whole world, to gather them together to the war of the great day of God the Almighty. 15 (Behold, I am coming like a thief! Blessed is the one who stays awake, keeping his garments on, that he may not go about naked and be seen exposed!) 16 And they gathered them together into the place which is called in Hebrew Har-magedon.
   17 And the seventh poured out his bowl upon the air; and there came forth a great voice out of the temple, from the throne, saying: It is done! 18 And there were lightnings and voices and thunders, and there was a great earthquake, such as has never occurred since men came upon the earth, so great an earthquake, so mighty. 19 And the great city was divided into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell, and Babylon the great was remembered in the sight of God, to give to her the cup of the wine of the fierceness of His anger. 20 And every island fled away and the mountains were not found. 21 And great hailstones, each about the weight of a talent, came down out of heaven upon men, and men blasphemed God because of the plague of the hail. For the plague was so severe.


16:9,11 Again, even the very final judgments of God upon sinners are intended to bring them to repentance rather than simply express the wrath of an offended deity. God is so passionate for human repentance; including our own, today.

16:15 The allusion is to the virgins who were tempted to fall asleep because it seemed that Christ, the bridegroom, delayed His return (Mt. 25:5). The garments refer to the white clothing of Christ’s righteousness which we were given at baptism (19:8). We keep these garments on by continuing to believe that this is truly how we stand before God, and thereby keeping awake in our watching joyfully for Christ’s return. Our eagerness for His coming can only be maintained if we are humbly confident of our acceptance by Him then.

16:19 So many cities are built on fault lines, this may have a literal fulfilment.