Good Friday morning. Another week has flown by.
Revelation 15: 5-8
5 “After this I looked, and the temple of the tent of witness in heaven was opened, 6 and out of the temple came the seven angels with the seven plagues, robed in pure bright linen, with golden sashes across their chests. 7 Then one of the four living creatures gave the seven angels seven golden bowls full of the wrath of God, who lives forever and ever; 8 and the temple was filled with smoke from the glory of God and from his power, and no one could enter the temple until the seven plagues of the seven angels were ended.”
The “tent of witness” is a common title in the Old Testament for the tabernacle in the wilderness. John is seeing this vision in terms of the ancient tabernacle, not the temple in Jerusalem. Here comes the seven avenging angels. They are coming out of the Holy Place in the tabernacle where the Ark of the Covenant was, where the tables of the ten commandments were kept, the Law of God. The angels are coming out to avenge all who did not keep God’s Law.
Their outfits are symbolic: they are priestly, royal, and gleaming white. They are inhabitants of heaven who have come to execute God’s decrees upon earth. Verse 7–remember the four living creatures from 4:7? The lion, ox, man and eagle. One of them hands the bowls of wrath to the seven angels. This may symbolize that nature is serving God’s purposes.
The smoke is a common symbol of God from the Old Testament. Exodus 40: 34-35 “Then the cloud covered the tent of meeting, and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle. 35 Moses was not able to enter the tent of meeting because the cloud settled upon it, and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle.” Possibly, the plans and purposes of God will be clouded and obscured to humans because we cannot see into the mind of God. It appears that nothing can be done until the avenging angels have completed their mission. Nothing can halt the judgement! Yikes!
Blessings on your day,