Good Monday morning and happy President’s Day! Another frosty morning it is! We had a great turnout at church yesterday in spite of the cold. We are tough Minnesotans!

Revelation 14: 9-12

9 “Then another angel, a third, followed them, crying with a loud voice, “Those who worship the beast and its image, and receive a mark on their foreheads or on their hands, 10 they will also drink the wine of God’s wrath, poured unmixed into the cup of his anger, and they will be tormented with fire and sulfur in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb. 11 And the smoke of their torment goes up forever and ever. There is no rest day or night for those who worship the beast and its image and for anyone who receives the mark of its name.”

12 Here is a call for the endurance of the saints, those who keep the commandments of God and hold fast to the faith of Jesus.”

This is a warning to all who fail in the time of trial. It is the fiercest warning of all dooms. In the days of John, the Church was righting for its life. If the Church was to survive, it was going to have to be prepared to face suffering, trials, imprisonment, and even death. This fate was dependent on each individual Christian being faithful until death.

In Genesis 19:28, we read of the same fate for Sodom and Gomorrah. Also Isaiah 34: 8-10 describes the same kind of vengeance from God. The wicked will be destroyed in the presence of the holy angels and the Lamb. Ezra 4 says, “There shall be shown the furnace of hell, and opposite to it the paradise of delight.”

To us modern Christians, this seems so harsh, but in ancient times, the persecution of the church was real and hellish. They were encouraged by the thought that some day, their tormentors would face judgement.

Blessings on your day,

Pastor Sue