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The Great Tribulation (Revelation 7)


Revelation 7 144000 sealed, great multitude, Jewish remnant accept Jesus, resist Islamic state

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Revelation 7

Sealing God’s servants
After this I saw four angels standing at the four corners of the earth, holding the four winds of the earth, that no wind should blow on the earth, or on the sea, or upon any tree. 2 And I saw another angel ascend from the sunrising, having the seal of the living God; and he cried with a great voice to the four angels to whom it was given to hurt the earth and the sea, 3 saying: Do not hurt the earth, nor the sea, nor the trees, until we have sealed the servants of our God on their foreheads. 4 And I heard the number of those that were sealed, a hundred and forty and four thousand, sealed out of every tribe of the children of Israel. 5 Of the tribe of Judah were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Reuben twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Gad twelve thousand. 6 Of the tribe of Asher twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Naphtali twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Manasseh twelve thousand. 7 Of the tribe of Simeon twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Levi twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Issachar twelve thousand. 8 Of the tribe of Zebulun twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Joseph twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Benjamin were sealed twelve thousand.
   9 After these things I saw and beheld a great crowd, which no one could number, out of every nation, comprised of all tribes, peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, arrayed in white robes and with palms in their hands. 10 And they cry with a great voice, saying: Salvation to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!
   11 And all the angels were standing round about the throne and about the elders and the four living creatures; and they fell before the throne on their faces and worshiped God, 12 saying: Amen. Blessing, glory, wisdom, thanksgiving, honour, power and might to our God for ever and ever. Amen.
   13 And one of the elders asked me: These that are dressed in white robes, who are they and from where did they come? 14 And I replied: My lord, do you know? And he explained to me: These are they that came out of the great tribulation, and they washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. 15 Therefore are they before the throne of God, and they serve Him day and night in His temple, and He that sits on the throne shall spread His tabernacle over them. 16 They shall hunger no more, nor thirst any more. Neither shall the sun strike upon them, nor any heat. 17 For the Lamb that is in the midst of the throne shall be their shepherd, and shall guide them to springs of living water, and God shall wipe away every tear from their eyes.


7:3 The seal is on the forehead, representing the mind. God identifies who is really His by their attitude of mind. To be spiritually minded is the essence of Christianity.

7:4 Most numbers in Revelation are symbolic; 144 is 12 x 12, perhaps suggesting that the community of the redeemed will be based upon the we tribes of Israel in that the Christian hope is “the hope of Israel” (Acts 28:20), “salvation is of the Jews” (Jn. 4:22) in that the promises which comprise the Gospel of the Kingdom were made to Abraham and his children (Gal. 3:8).

7:9 People from every language and ethnic grouping will be redeemed in Christ when He returns. This means that the Gospel must go to every ethnic group on earth before Christ returns. The internet has hastened this possibility; for since the time of Christ the majority of those groups were ignorant of Christianity. In this context we must understand the Lord’s teaching that once the Gospel goes into all the world, then He will return (Mt. 24:14). In this sense our world-wide preaching can hasten His return.

7:14 This could imply that during the great tribulation just before Christ returns, the persecution will result in the Gospel going out to every ethnic group and gaining converts (see v. 9 note); just as persecution lead to the spreading of the Gospel to the Gentiles in the first century (Acts 11:19,20).