Lesson Five – Chapters 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22 – Mystery Babylon, The Seven Last Things, and a Warning

Lesson Five – Sections Three, Four, and Five – Chapters 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, and 22

Mystery Babylon, The Seven Last Things, and a Warning


Chapters 17 and 18 – Mystery Babylon

There is but one Babylon, but two chapters to describe God’s judgment on the great harlot. Chapter 17 covers spiritual Babylon, and chapter 18 covers economic Babylon. We do not know just where the Antichrist will set up his worldly empire. It could be in the current location of Babylon of old in Iraq or Rome as the center of the revived Roman Empire. And it could be somewhere else on the planet. But, what is certain is that these two chapters cover the worldwide kingdom of the Antichrist during the Tribulation and God’s deserved judgment on the great harlot.

One of the seven angels who had the seven bowl judgments spoke to John and took him to see the downfall of the great harlot (vs. 1) who is seated on many waters or the vast number of nations of the Earth. Babylon is ruling or spiritually influencing the nations by her evil nature causing “those who dwell on the Earth to be made drunk with the wine of her immorality”.

What follows is a vivid and detailed description of the decadence of spiritual Babylon and her influence on the nations of the world during the Tribulation causing  one-world religion to be the only acceptable religion – sort of an ecumenical, whatever you believe in works kind of religion. The angel bore John away in the Spirit into a desert where he saw the harlot riding the beast or the Antichrist. The beast’s scarlet color indicates the bloodthirsty nature of the Antichrist’s rule, and the woman, the harlot, is clothed in purple and scarlet bedecked with gold, precious stones, and pearls indicating her self-appointed royalty and her bloodthirsty ways also (vs. 3) The beast is covered with blasphemous names no doubt proclaiming the Antichrist’s arrogant and narcissistic nature, and he has seven heads and ten horns, the heads being the governing committee of Gentile leaders of the Revived Roman Empire over the ten confederate nations of that Empire.

The woman is holding a gold cup in her hand full of filth, abominations, and “unclean things of her immorality” (vs. 4) Prominent on her forehead is a name of “musterion” in Greek or “mystery, “Babylon the great, the mother of harlots and of the abominations of the Earth” (vs. 5) Perhaps this is a reference to the surprise that Babylon could be not only an economic center of the Antichrist’s kingdom, but also a center of false religion. The first part of the Tribulation will be a time when a pope-like leader (perhaps the Pope himself) will start an ecumenical whatever belief is OK religion and this is the great harlot. John then saw that the woman was drunk with the blood of  the saints or God’s people and of the martyrs or witnesses for Jesus during the Tribulation since she is responsible for their murders (vs. 6) And John wonders and utterly amazed at the great evil that he sees in her. The angel asks John why he wonders at the woman and then explains that the beast who “was and is not, and is about to come up out of the abyss and go to destruction” and the inhabitants of the Earth whose names are not in the book of life will be mesmerized by the beast (vs. 8).

Chapter 17, verses 9 through 13, explain the organizational detail of the kingdom of the Antichrist (the beast). Verse 9 is a reminder to the reader to seek wisdom and intelligence when interpreting these verses. We do this as Christians by seeking God’s forgiveness by confessing our sins (1 John 1:9), asking for the filling of the Spirit (daily – Ephesians 5:18, “be continually filled…), then asking for wisdom, intelligence, and discernment. Then, in verse 10, we see perhaps a reference to Rome or New York (seven hills), the seven heads who are the seven rulers or governors of the Revived Roman Empire, one of which receives head wound thought to be fatal (13:3). When this king is supposedly healed and resurrected from the false head wound, he becomes the eighth king (vs. 11) is possessed by Satan himself, and becomes the world dictator of the second half of the Tribulation. The worldly kings have power for a very short time (vs. 12) but relinquish that power to the beast and his kingdom with one common policy (vs. 13) that the Antichrist is supreme ruler. Verse 14 tells us that these kings and their dictator will wage war against the Lamb throughout the Tribulation, but the Lamb is victorious because He is King of kings and Lord of lords.

Chapter 17 verse 16 reveals that the ten horns, or the ten Gentile powers of the Revived Roman Empire, turn against the harlot, the one-world religion that covers all nations (vs. 16), and they destroy her with fire. Verse 17 says that God times this rebellion against the one-world religion so that the beast will have authority over all the Earth in the last half of the Tribulation. Some have said that this one-world religion in the first half of the Tribulation is what is left of the Roman Catholic Church with possibly the present Pope (since he has demonstrated clearly that he is not a Christian by saying there are many ways to Heaven)  taking over all religions after the devastation of Islam by the pre-Tribulation destruction of the Ezekiel 38 and 39 war. What makes this possibility even more interesting is that Babylon was the area where Nimrod started the mother/goddess – son/resurrection (Semiramis/Tammuz)  worship that greatly resembles the Catholic worship of Mary, mother of Jesus. Essentially, the Roman Catholic religion at face value (since they worship a female goddess that in reality is only a blessed woman who gave birth to Jesus the Son of God) is a cult. Of course, there are professing Catholics who have become true Christians and remain in the Catholic religion to minister to those caught up in the cult practices. What takes the harlot’s place at the mid-Tribulation point is the blatant worship of the Antichrist and his statue enforced by the false prophet.

Chapter 18:1-3 begins with an angel of great power and authority descending from Heaven illuminating the Earth with his glory because he came from God. The angel shouts, “Fallen, fallen is Babylon the great!” The angel says that Babylon has become the dwelling place of the most perverse of demonic and loathsome spirits. The nations have been influenced by these demons and have caused the leaders of the Earth to join in with Babylon in her fornications, idolatry, and immorality. Merchants of the world have become rich by profiting from Babylon’s sensuality and wantonness. Then another voice (18:4-8) announces that the Tribulation saints should leave from Babylon and cease from participating in her sins and not receive her coming plagues. Her sins have piled high all the way to Heaven, and John quotes from Isaiah 47 in asking God for Babylon’s fall and punishment for all of her many sins. The rulers of the Earth will lament when they see the “smoke of her burning” (vs. 9). The city is destroyed in one hour and the entire Earth will mourn the loss of this great commercial and economic giant because they have lost much.

Heavenly rejoicing begins in chapter 18:20-24. All the saints and apostles and prophets rejoice indicating a common feeling among Old Testament, New Testament, and Tribulation believers because Babylon has been an evil throughout history going back to Nimrod just after the Flood of  Noah. Babylon, “the great city”, will be drowned in the sea by a great millstone (vs. 21), and her demise will be violent. No more will the sounds of pagan reveling be heard, no skills of craftsmen be found, no marrying, no merchants prospering, no more drug abuse (her sorcery – “pharmakeia” in Greek) or religious rituals to idols. Babylon was where the blood of saints and prophets and Tribulation saints was shed, and it will exist no longer (vs. 24).


Section Four – The Seven Last Things – Chapters 19 through 22:5

Chapters 19, 20, 21, and 22:1-5 – The Marriage of the Lamb, The Second Coming, the Millennium, The Great White Throne, and the New Heaven and New Earth

We now come to the Seven Last Things starting in chapter 19, a culmination of all the “sevens” in Revelation and the wonderful future that awaits the believers in Jesus Christ. Heavenly rejoicing is heard by John because of the fall of Antichrist’s Babylon, his globalism that we can already see growing today. Four hallelujahs are sounded (verses 1, 3, 4, and 6) each saying, “praise the ever-living God!”. These hallelujahs are for the fulfillment of Jeremiah 51:48 and 49 where those words come directly from the song of Moses in Deuteronomy 32:43 and Isaiah 34:10. The 24 elders and the four creatures making up the Heavenly Court join in on the worship and fall down before God’s throne. Then a voice from the throne is heard calling for all of God’s servants to praise Him! A vast throng of voices sounding like may pounding waves and thunder peals shout forth a praise not only for the demise of Babylon but in anticipation of the very near beginning of the long-awaited messianic reign of Jesus Christ and the end of sin’s prevalence on the Earth. The praise continues in verses 7 through 10 with the Marriage of the Lamb to His Bride, the Church.

To clarify, the Church of Jesus Christ, His Bride, has not been seen in Revelation since chapter three until now. Certain promises were made  to Jesus’ disciples, the apostles, and to all His Church or those that accept Jesus as Lord and Savior , that Christ was going to prepare a place for us in Heaven, and that He was coming back, His Second Coming, to take us, His Church, to that place (John 14:3). He also promised through Paul to the Thessalonian and Corinthian church that someday all believers would be changed “in a moment,, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet” when the dead in Christ will rise first, then “we who are alive remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air” – the Rapture. Since the Church is not mentioned or seen in Revelation since chapter 3, the great heavenly company from every tribe, tongue, people, and nation have been removed from the Earth to prevent the Church from seeing any of God’s wrath (1 Thessalonians 1:10). “For God has not destined us for wrath, but for obtaining salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Thessalonians 5:9).

The heavenly marriage of the Lamb and the Bride, the church, is in 19:8, where we are seen clothed in “fine linen, bright and clean” which represents “the righteous acts of the saints”. Christ, by His death on the cross, made it possible for believers to be sanctified and cleansed so that, “He might present to Himself the church in all her glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she would be holy and blameless” (Ephesians 5:26-27). John is urged to invite others to the “marriage supper of the Lamb”. This invitation seems to be there for the readers of this book over the ages to ponder and decide to be a part of the real thing which will soon happen! This section closes in verse 10 with a profound definition that all believers should notice and take to heart. John is told, as are we, that the substance and very essence of the Truth revealed by Jesus (the testimony of Jesus) is the spirit of prophecy! In other words, the testimony given by Jesus Christ is the total substance of what the Holy Spirit inspired biblical apostles and prophets to say so that all future generations would know what is to come.

We now come to the most dramatic passage in all the Bible – the vivid description of the Second Coming, the first of the seven last things, and Jesus’ triumphal return to Earth on a white horse as Judge (19:11-16). He is called “Faithful and True” and He comes back to Earth to make war “in righteousness”. 2 Thessalonians 1:7 says, He will come “in flaming fire, dealing out retribution to those who do not know God”, a fulfillment of Isaiah 63:1-6. The fire in Jesus’ eyes represents judgment and perfect discernment, and the many diadems on His head represent His authority and His right to rule over all the Earth. He has a “name written upon Him which no one knows except Himself.” This is a Jesus no one has ever seen before, King of kings, absolute Monarch who brings forth judgment. Verse 14 says that “The Word of God” is accompanied with His entourage of the “troops of Heaven” or His redeemed Church, former Bride of Christ, now His Wife, the church triumphant, clothed in fine linen, dazzling and clean, riding on white horses.

Out of His mouth comes judgment upon the rebellious nations like a “sharp sword” which will smite the nations and He will rule with a rod of iron. The overcomers from the dispensation of the Church or the Age of Grace will also share in that rule (Revelation 2:26-27). Verse 15 goes on to say just how thorough His judgment will truly be because He “will tread the winepress of the fierceness of the wrath and indignation of God, the Almighty”. And, on His robe and on His thigh, Jesus has a name inscribed, King of kings and Lord of lords (Deuteronomy 10:17).

The final confrontation between God and the forces of evil in the seven-year Tribulation has come (Revelation 19:17-21). An angel standing in the brightness of the sun announces a strange order for all the birds of the sky to assemble for a great “supper of God” which comes as a result of great carnage called the ”Battle of Armageddon”, the second of the seven last things. On the plain of Megiddo just Northwest of Jerusalem, the armies of the Antichrist and the kings of the world have gathered to fight against God and His people, the Jews. This final confrontation is man’s final attempt at what the enemies of Israel have been saying for centuries, especially in the last 70 years since Israel became a nation in 1948. Psalm 83:4 says, “…Come, let us wipe them out as a nation; let the name of Israel be in remembrance no more”. The time has come for Antichrist, the Devil, and all the rebellious to try and accomplish that goal, but the slaughter will be so sudden, so quick, and so massive that the birds will feast on the flesh of rulers, generals, captains, mighty men, horses, all the flesh of rebellious humanity because Jesus defeats the millions with a sword or a word from the mouth of Jesus (vs. 20-21). The beast and the false prophet are seized by Jesus (vs. 20) and they are “thrown alive into the lake of Fire which burns with brimstone”. It is all over in an instant pointing to the utter futility of rebellion against God.

Chapter 20 begins with the third of the seven last things where Satan is bound by an angel with a “great chain” and thrown into the abyss for a thousand years. The result of this is that Satan’s power to lead and lead astray and deceive is absent for a literal thousand years or the exact length of the millennial reign of Christ on Earth. The implication is that Satan’s minions both fallen angels and demons are also bound and unable to poison life with lies and temptations for that thousand years also making the Millennium free of outside influence on the consciences of mankind. This sets up the seventh and last dispensation of the Lord so that He can prove to fallen mankind that even when Satan’s influence is removed and men can actually see and hear the Lord Jesus Christ in the flesh as King, men will still choose themselves and reject God. What this really does is remove the last excuse that any man can succeed without God. The Sheep and Goat Judgment of Matthew 25 fits into this particular spot in the time of the Tribulation where the humans alive after all these things are separated into two groups indicating those who have accepted Christ and those who have not. The Sheep go into the Millennial Kingdom as humans as we are today to procreate and worship the Living Christ Who will be ruling visibly from Jerusalem. The unbelievers, the goats, will be sent to the place for all those who reject Christ, hell.

The first occurrence of resurrection from the dead occurred when Christ rose from the dead after His crucifixion. The second occurrence of resurrection will occur with the Rapture which raises from the dead all who have died as Christians or true believers in the risen Christ plus those true Christians alive at that wonderful moment. The third occurrence of resurrection occurs in Revelation 20:4-6 when the Old Testament saints (vs. 4, reference Daniel 12:2,13 and Isaiah 26:19) the Tribulation saints who were killed because they witnessed for Christ and had not taken the Antichrist’s mark or worshipped the Antichrist or his statue (vs. 4). The Tribulation unbelievers who die plus all of the living rebels and dead unbelievers from Adam to the end will also be resurrected (vs. 5) at the end of the thousand years to stand at the Great White Throne Judgment of Christ. Those who take part in “the first resurrection”, which is all those from the three resurrections mentioned containing all the believers in God and Jesus, are called “blessed and holy” (Revelation 20:6). The first kind of death human beings experience is physical death. The second kind of death is spiritual and only for those resurrected at the end of the thousand years. Believers never experience the second death since we are all resurrected to life with the Savior. So, there are really just two resurrections, the first to life eternal with Christ and the second to spiritual death and the Lake of Fire. And there are two deaths, the first is physical which all humans are subject to regardless of spirituality and the second is spiritual meaning eternity without God in the Lake of Fire. Those of the first resurrection are seen by John as ruling with Christ in His Kingdom in 20:4 which is the fourth of the seven last things. All those of the second death are the ones who never believed or accepted God or Jesus and are resurrected to stand before Jesus at the Great White Throne Judgment.

Revelation 20:7-10 points to an incredible and difficult to believe and accept event. There is a final rebellion at the end of the thousand-year reign of Christ on Earth. Satan is released from the abyss along with all his demons and fallen angels “for a little while” (20:3) and this is the fifth of the seven last things. During that short time which could be just a few weeks, Satan is able to convince multitudes (vs. 8) all over the Earth, millions who have actually been born and raised and reached mature age, to rebel against the living God, Jesus, actually present and visible to them! The term “Gog and Magog” is used from Ezekiel 38 and 39, and here it refers to a multitude of nations with a leader, Gog or Satan. Verse 9 says these rebellious hordes assemble, just as their ancestors from before the kingdom at the end of the Tribulation, around Jerusalem and God’s people to fight against God yet once again. This is a last gasp effort of the enemy to rebel and win against Christ, but fire from Heaven descends and consumes them all. Immediately, Satan is thrown into the Lake of Fire to be with the Antichrist and false prophet burning with brimstone forever and forever.

The Great White Throne Judgment (Revelation 20:11-15), the sixth of the seven last things, is a name of an event that is, by its very title, a judgment that is pure, righteous, and fair. Jesus is the Judge on the throne (John 5:22) and unbelievers of all the ages are the indicted, not believers. This is a judgment of peoples’ works without Christ. Believers have already had a “judgment”, the Bema Seat of Christ (2 Corinthians 5), where our works for Christ after acceptance of Him as Lord and Savior. The Bema Seat was never about sin or condemnation since “there is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus” (Romans 8:1). Verse 11 hints that the Great White Throne might happen after Jesus “lets go” (Colossians 1:17) and the existing heavens and the Earth simply explode in fire and disappear. What Peter spoke of in 2 Peter 3:10-12 comes to pass where the old “will pass away with a roar and the elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and its works will be burned up”.  Next, the unbelieving dead will be resurrected and “stand” before the Great White Throne and Jesus to have the books that have recorded all of their motives, aims, and deeds as well as the Book of Life opened and reviewed. Many if not all who stand before the Righteous Judge will make excuses (“didn’t we preach in Jesus’ Name?” or “I have been a good person and done great humanitarian deeds!”). The result is that the unbelievers’ deeds will not save them as attributed to the fact that their names are not found in the Book of Life. They are then thrown, one by one, into the Lake of Fire.

Isaiah 65:17 speaks of the new heavens and the new Earth, the seventh of the last things. The word used in Isaiah is the Hebrew “bara” which means to create “ex nihilo” or “out of nothing”. Some have said when John says in Revelation 21:1-8 that he saw a new heaven and a new Earth, he was speaking of a renovated version of the existing heavens and Earth. But Isaiah puts that speculation to rest. It is, indeed, NEW heavens and a NEW Earth signifying that the sin of Adam and all mankind has been done away with completely. This new universe will endure forever before the Lord (Isaiah 66:22). A most spectacular sight will then be seen, the New Jerusalem will descend from Heaven “from God, made ready as a bride adorned for her husband” (Revelation 21:2). In this New Jerusalem, “the tabernacle of God is among men, and He will dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself will be among them” (vs. 3). God will eliminate all tears, mourning, pain, and death because “the first things have passed away” (vs. 4). Verse 5 says that “He Who is seated on the throne said, See! I make all things new”.

Then, John is told to write all of this because it is all faithful and true. Jesus then says to John, “It is done!” (vs. 6). The Alpha and Omega (really the Aleph and the Tav), the beginning and the end, has done this and completed what His Plan was from the beginning. And all who are victorious, all who accepted Jesus as God plus the Old Testament believers will be the sons of God forever and will be able to come to the fountain of the water of Life to drink (vs. 6 and 7). But, those who were rebellious and unbelievers will “be in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death” (verse 8).

Then, one of the angels who had one of the seven bowls of wrath came to John and asked him to come with him and he will show John the bride, the Lamb’s wife (vs. 9). John is transported to a high mountain where he can see a panoramic view of the holy city, Jerusalem, descending out of Heaven from God (vs. 9 and 10). The city reflects God’s glory, shining like a costly stone, clear as glass (vs. 11). John describes what he saw of the city in terms that he understood in the first century A.D. From verse 12 to verse 27, we get a detailed description of the holy city, the New Jerusalem. There are high walls surrounding the city, some 220 feet high. There are 12 gates, three per side of the cube-shaped city (the Holy of Holies was a cube in the Tabernacle in the Wilderness and in Solomon’s Temple and in Herod’s Temple, so it is a reasonable guess that the city’s shape is a cube). One angel was stationed per gate as guards and greeters, and each gate was named for each tribe of Israel. The wall of the city has twelve foundation stones that recognize and honoring the twelve apostles. These gates and foundation stones represent both Israel and the Church showing God’s intention that citizens of the holy city come from every dispensation of the past.

Ezekiel 40:5 describes a similar event where an angel measures the temple with a measuring rod about 9 feet in length (six cubits of 18 inches in length each), so this angel may have a measuring rod of equal length. The New Jerusalem is about fifteen hundred miles long, wide, and high (vs. 16). That is three and a third BILLION CUBIC MILES. If a person was given a cubic acre as his own in this city, there would be enough room for over 54 TRILLION people. WOW! BIG CITY! Lots of room for many other God-ordained things such as the Tree of Life and the River of Living Water. The walls and foundation stones are adorned with the most precious and costly gems and stones of great brilliance and color. Each city gate is a single giant pearl. The main street of the city is pure gold but is translucent as glass. The city has no need for the sun or the moon because the splendor and glory of God and the lamb illuminate it. There is no temple in the holy city because the Lord God Omnipotent and the Lamb is its temple. The Father and the Son are together the temple, the light, and the throne! These words shout that Christ is co-equal with the Father. The saved nations and the great rulers and kings of history who received Christ as Savior will be there indicating that all levels of human existence will jointly participate in the glory of God when God, at the same time,  is honoring the righteous acts of the redeemed in His Holy City!

There will never be any night, the gates of the city never close, and there will never be any fear because all sin has been judged and purged from the new universe. The city’s inhabitants will be only those “whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life” (vs. 17). The only source of water in this eternal state is that which comes from the throne of God and of the Lamb (vs. 1), and this water is the Water of Life, not just plain water for sustenance. This water comes from the throne and flows down the main street, the broad way (source of Broadway?) of the city. On either side of this River of the Water of Life is the Tree of Life that produces twelve different fruits and changes each month. The assumption is that there are trees from the same root on both sides of the river changing fruit each month. The leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations. The interpretation of this is difficult because of the eternal state of all the bodies that reside there. Perhaps the “healing” is a reference to the perpetual blessing of the new heaven and Earth that all are enjoying forevermore since there will never again be anything accursed. Christ’s “bond-servants” will worship and serve Him and be identified by His Name on their foreheads to show that they belong to Him.


Section Five – Conclusion and Warning – Chapter 22:6-21

John concludes his testimony by relating what the angel that has been with him for a while says. The angel assures John in verse 6 that what he has heard is reliable, accurate, and true. Not only that, but the events of this Revelation must take place “soon” or “shortly”. The Greek words, “tachos” and “tachu” used in verses 22:6, 7, 12, and 20 mean “in swift succession” or with rapidity of action. What this simply means is that when these things begin, they will occur very quickly and with certainty. Verse 7 is key to anyone who wants to know if they should read and study and meditate on the book of Revelation. “Blessed is he who observes and lays to heart and keeps the truths of the prophecy contained in this little book”. Does anyone not want God’s special blessing, especially since it entails reading of His Word?

John now testifies that he was overwhelmed at seeing all of this, so he fell down to worship the angel messenger with him. But, the angel immediately reminds John that he and John are just “fellow servants” along with the prophets and those that heed the words of this book. Then the angel said to NOT to seal up the words of this prophecy because the time is near for the fulfillment of all of the things which John saw. The events of the Revelation could begin at any moment starting, of course, with the ever imminent Rapture of the Church (chapter 4:1 and 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18). Verse 11 is a curious one in that it says that those who are unrighteous and filthy will continue to be so, but those who seek after righteousness should persevere and be patient and not become discouraged. They should continue to live godly no matter what comes with the everlasting and blessed hope always present in their minds. Christ then repeats His statement, “Behold, I AM (EHYEH), coming soon, My reward with Me to render unto every man according to what he has done” (vs. 12). This is a direct reference to the Rapture and the Bema Judgment Seat of Christ. And to all, Jesus repeats that, “I AM (EHYEH), the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last”, the beginning and end of everything!

The robes of the redeemed are washed by means of the blood of Christ (vs. 14), and it is through Him that believers have access to the tree of Life and entrance to the Holy City of Jerusalem. Verse 15 is not saying the vile and unrighteous will be outside the city, Jesus is telling us that those unbelievers will never have access to the holy city because they have already been thrown into the lake of fire because their names were not found in the Lamb’s book of life.

In Revelation 22:16, Christ assures the reader that He sent His angel to testify to John all that has been written to the churches of that day and to the churches up until He returns. Jesus then makes it clear that, “I AM (EHYEH), the Root (the Source) and the Offspring of David, the bright Morning Star (Isaiah 11:1, 10)”. Jesus is descendent of David and has the right to rule on the throne of David in the Millennial Kingdom in the eternal city. Both the Holy Spirit and the Bride of Christ, the Church, say, “Come” (22:17). This verse is the last and most profound invitation to come to Christ, those who are spiritually thirsty. Salvation cost Christ everything, but to those who accept Him, salvation costs nothing! The reason for this is that it is impossible to purchase redemption and to satisfy a holy, righteous God. Revelation 22:18 and 19 is addressed to the lost, or the deceiver who attempts to add to the Word of God, or anyone who attempts to remove what is written in the Word of God, especially from this prophecy! The one who tries to do anything to this prophecy will be forced to endure the plagues of Revelation, and God will remove them from sharing in the tree of Life and the New Jerusalem. This is a very ominous warning that should frighten any person who attempts to add to or take way from the book of the Revelation of Jesus Christ.

The last two verses in the book of Revelation and the entire Bible speaks to the fact that Jesus Himself is the one testifying to the Truths that John has been writing down. Jesus says, “Yes, I AM (EHYEH) coming quickly”, to which John replies, “Amen. Come, Lord Jesus!”. Again, the term “quickly” means “suddenly”, again referring to the Rapture because that event is imminent, without precursor, unannounced, without warning. This blessed Hope cannot be the Second Coming because those in the Tribulation would be able to predict Jesus’ return with accuracy knowing what happens just before He comes. John’s personal prayer at the end of this amazing book is to his friends in the cities of the churches from chapters 2 and 3. But this prayer is also from the Holy Spirit to all the many thousands of churches throughout history up to the present. The prayer is a hope but it is also an exhortation to all Christians to be ready for the Rapture and meeting Jesus face to face (John 14:1-3). The book of Revelation begins with grace (1:4) and it ends with grace (22:21). The final benediction from John is a prophecy in itself that all God’s redeemed will experience the riches of God’s grace in the ages to come. The way to receive those riches from God is to accept Jesus as Lord and Savior now and to escape the wrath of the Great God which is coming to all the Earth in the very near future. Maranatha!  (Our Lord, Come!)