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Sunday, June 10, 2012

I Heard A Loud Voice

Lord, give me understanding as I study these passages.

"Then I heard a loud voice from the temple saying to the seven angels, "Go and pour out the bowls of the wrath of God on the earth." ... And I heard another from the altar saying, "Even so, Lord God Almighty, true and righteous are Your judgments." (Revelation 16:1, 7)

Through the eyes of the apostle John, we see the time has come for God's wrath to be poured out in full upon the earth. Seven bowls contain His mighty judgments, and the anguish of those on the earth intensifies as each bowl is emptied. There is a crescendo of hurt and suffering, culminating with the greatest earthquake the world has ever known (v. 18). And in the midst of it all, there is praise.

God is praised for His righteousness - and for His judgment (v. 5). Victory's song is still resounding in heaven, as the seven bowls were preceded by the Tribulation saints extolling God's mighty works and His judgments (Revelation 15:3-4).

It may seem odd that God's judgment is being praised - that His wrath is being celebrated. But apart from the righteous judgment of God, there can be no ultimate victory. Sin must be dealt with.

We see such wickedness in the world today, and we may wonder why God doesn't intervene. But we can celebrate victory by knowing that not one scintilla of an iota of any sin will ever go unpunished. Sin will be pardoned in Christ or it will be punished in hell, but it will never be overlooked.

If God were to overlook even one sin, He would no longer be holy. God's righteousness demands that sin be paid for. The payment was made in full by the sacrificial death of His own Son.

When Jesus had paid the required debt for sin with His precious blood on the Cross, He bowed His had and said, "It is finished." (John 19:30). Redemption is complete. With the emptying of the seventh bowl, God says, "It is done!" (Revelation 16:17). God's wrath has been poured out and now retribution will be completed.

~Adrian Rogers~

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