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 August 9, 2018

Please read today’s Scriptures and use the comment section on this page to share your insights from today’s reading. You can also just mention a verse that impacted you or post a question!

Read (and Hear) the Bible in One Year

Text: Isaiah 54-58
Audio: Isaiah 54-58

You can use the audio Bible as a guide to help “set the pace” as you read along.

Memory Verse of the Week

The rest of mankind, who were not killed by these plagues, did not repent of the works of their hands nor give up worshiping demons and idols of gold and silver and bronze and stone and wood, which cannot see or hear or walk, 21 nor did they repent of their murders or their sorceries or their sexual immorality or their thefts.
(Revelation 9:20-21 ESV)

Revelation 11 (ESV)

Then I was given a measuring rod like a staff, and I was told, “Rise and measure the temple of God and the altar and those who worship there, but do not measure the court outside the temple; leave that out, for it is given over to the nations, and they will trample the holy city for forty-two months. And I will grant authority to my two witnesses, and they will prophesy for 1,260 days, clothed in sackcloth.”

These are the two olive trees and the two lampstands that stand before the Lord of the earth. And if anyone would harm them, fire pours from their mouth and consumes their foes. If anyone would harm them, this is how he is doomed to be killed. They have the power to shut the sky, that no rain may fall during the days of their prophesying, and they have power over the waters to turn them into blood and to strike the earth with every kind of plague, as often as they desire. And when they have finished their testimony, the beast that rises from the bottomless pit will make war on them and conquer them and kill them, and their dead bodies will lie in the street of the great city that symbolically is called Sodom and Egypt, where their Lord was crucified. For three and a half days some from the peoples and tribes and languages and nations will gaze at their dead bodies and refuse to let them be placed in a tomb, 10 and those who dwell on the earth will rejoice over them and make merry and exchange presents, because these two prophets had been a torment to those who dwell on the earth. 11 But after the three and a half days a breath of life from God entered them, and they stood up on their feet, and great fear fell on those who saw them. 12 Then they heard a loud voice from heaven saying to them, “Come up here!” And they went up to heaven in a cloud, and their enemies watched them. 13 And at that hour there was a great earthquake, and a tenth of the city fell. Seven thousand people were killed in the earthquake, and the rest were terrified and gave glory to the God of heaven.

14 The second woe has passed; behold, the third woe is soon to come.

15 Then the seventh angel blew his trumpet, and there were loud voices in heaven, saying, “The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, and he shall reign forever and ever.” 16 And the twenty-four elders who sit on their thrones before God fell on their faces and worshiped God, 17 saying,

“We give thanks to you, Lord God Almighty,
    who is and who was,
for you have taken your great power
    and begun to reign.
18 The nations raged,
    but your wrath came,
    and the time for the dead to be judged,
and for rewarding your servants, the prophets and saints,
    and those who fear your name,
    both small and great,
and for destroying the destroyers of the earth.”

19 Then God’s temple in heaven was opened, and the ark of his covenant was seen within his temple. There were flashes of lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder, an earthquake, and heavy hail.

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Next: Revelation 12

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This Post Has 5 Comments
  1. “We give thanks to you, Lord God Almighty,
        who is and who was,
    for you have taken your great power
        and begun to reign.
    18 The nations raged,
        but your wrath came,
        and the time for the dead to be judged,
    and for rewarding your servants, the prophets and saints,
        and those who fear your name,
        both small and great,
    and for destroying the destroyers of the earth.” Revelation 11:17-18

    Worshiped God, Saying…

    The first thing that caught my attention this morning is in Revelation 11:16, "And the twenty-four elders who sit on their thrones before God fell on their faces and worshiped God," then the first word of verse 17, "saying."

    When I think of worship, I think of singing. I know of course that worship goes way beyond singing songs but it's the first thing I usually think of when I think of worship. Here, the elders are worshipping on their faces declaring truths about the Lord God Almighty to Him directly, audibly!

    This "God-centered" worship is different than many "worship" songs that are popular today which focus on our experiences and how God does things for us. There has been a shift from man-centered lyrics in recent years to a focus on who God is but almost exclusively the comforting aspects of His character.

    I new song I'm writing titled, "Amazing God of Grace" was born out of reflecting on the classic hymn "Amazing Grace." I was singing it quietly to myself and thinking about how amazing God's grace is. Then instantly I thought while His grace is amazing, God Himself is AMAZING and the song was born. It's in its infant stage right now but I hope we can sing it together soon as a church. 

    Speaking of amazing, how amazing is it that God receives worship when we echo back to Him a recognition (and submission) to Him not only with our lives but with our words? Not just singing words but just speaking truths about God to Him?

    Another fascinating aspect of their worship is what they are saying! They speak of His "great power and begun to reign", that His "wrath came" when "the nations raged." They speak of the "time for the dead to be judged", and "for rewarding your servants, the prophets and saints…who fear your name" and then for "destroying the destroyers of the earth."

    This is worship? This is worship!

    While it's not the only way we worship, it is certainly not a focus exclusively on God's love, mercy and grace. Our worship should also include other aspects of His character (which is missing in a lot of "worship" songs today). 

    An interesting note from the MacArthur Study Bible:

    who is to come, (used in Revelation 1:4, 8; Revelation 4:8) is omitted in the most reliable Gr. manuscripts. The coming of the kingdom is no longer future, it will be immediate."

    MacArthur, J., Jr. (Ed.). (1997). The MacArthur Study Bible (electronic ed., p. 2007). Nashville, TN: Word Pub.

    Does this chapter help expand your view on what worship is?

    Are you challenged by the content of their worship?

    Are you living in anticipation of the Lord's return?

    Come Lord Jesus, come!

  2. I like what you said, Scott, about speaking truths about God to Him. I do that all the time. I recognize his amazing blessings, and I thank Him on the spot. I also tell Him how in awe I am of Him and His love for me. Sometimes, it's, "I know that was You, God; thank you so much!" He is beyond the words I have. 

  3. Reading this passage of scripture leaves me in awe .To think about what it is going to be like for the people of this time . Frightening for those without Christ. Awe for those who know Christ.They know that this is all of God, and His time is coming very soon.Indeed , it is at hand.✝️✝️✝️✝️✝️✝️✝️✝️✝️✝️✝️✝️

  4. I love what all three of you wrote, Scott, Brynne and Bonnie!! 

    Thank you for focusing on the worship aspect of this chapter, Scott, because my head was reeling with all the questions and symbolism.

    The two prophets have always interested me. Are they two actual people? Are the days of their prophesying actual days? What of the two lampstands and two olive trees? And fire from their mouths consuming their foes? 

    I’m glad we’re reading Revelation instead of avoiding it. While we may walk away with many questions, we’ll also learn a lot! 

  5. I have been studying this passage for the last few days. In my notes, I have so much more but I settled on posting just this tidbit because of the interesting nature of how this chapters ties together descriptions of two different temples. 

    Revelation 11:16-19 (ESV)

    16  And the twenty-four elders who sit on their thrones before God fell on their faces and worshiped God, 17  saying, “We give thanks to you, Lord God Almighty, who is and who was, for you have taken your great power and begun to reign. 18  The nations raged, but your wrath came, and the time for the dead to be judged, and for rewarding your servants, the prophets and saints, and those who fear your name, both small and great, and for destroying the destroyers of the earth.” 19  Then God’s temple in heaven was opened, and the ark of his covenant was seen within his temple. There were flashes of lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder, an earthquake, and heavy hail.

    It is interesting that this chapter contains references to two temples, one in the 'holy city' and then one in heaven.

    In between is a description of two witnesses and persecution. However, the twenty-four elders worship God and his holy judgment.

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