First angel of Revelation fourteen proclaims God’s eternal character of agape love—this is the “everlasting gospel.” Theirs is a sealing message because it seals those who receive and accept it. It also seals those who reject it—they are sealed in their rejection and will no longer change their minds.  

In Isaiah chapter fourteen, Satan is portrayed under the type of the king of Babylon, and Babylon, which means confusion, represents his kingdom. Isaiah describes the character of his reign here on earth in the following way: 


It shall come to pass in the day the Lord gives you [WE, THE HUMAN RACE] rest from your sorrow, and from your fear and the hard bondage in which you were made to serve, that you will take up this proverb against the king of Babylon, and say: 


“How the oppressor [SATAN] has ceased, 

The golden city ceased! 

The Lord has broken the staff of the wicked,  

The scepter of the rulers [STAFF AND SCEPTER: LAW OF GOOD AND EVIL]; 

He who struck the people in wrath with a continual stroke, 

He who ruled the nations in anger, 

Is persecuted and no one hinders. 

The whole earth is at rest and quiet; 

They break forth into singing. 

Indeed the cypress trees rejoice over you, 

And the cedars of Lebanon, 

Saying, ‘Since you were cut down, 

No woodsman has come up against us.’ 

Hell from beneath is excited about you, 

To meet you at your coming; 

It stirs up the dead for you, 

All the chief ones of the earth; 

It has raised up from their thrones 

All the kings of the nations. 

They all shall speak and say to you: 

‘Have you also become as weak as we? 

Have you become like us? 

Your pomp is brought down to Sheol, 

And the sound of your stringed instruments; 

The maggot is spread under you, 

And worms cover you.’ 

“How you are fallen from heaven, 

O Lucifer, son of the morning! 

How you are cut down to the ground, 

You who weakened the nations! 

For you have said in your heart: 

‘I will ascend into heaven, 

I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; 

I will also sit on the mount of the congregation 

On the farthest sides of the north; 

I will ascend above the heights of the clouds, 

I will be like the Most High.’ 

Yet you shall be brought down to Sheol, 

To the lowest depths of the Pit. 

“Those who see you will gaze at you, 

And consider you, saying: 

‘Is this the man who made the earth tremble, 

Who shook kingdoms, 

Who made the world as a wilderness 

And destroyed its cities, 

Who did not open the house of his prisoners?’ 

“All the kings of the nations, 

All of them, sleep in glory, 

Everyone in his own house; 

But you are cast out of your grave 

Like an abominable branch, 

Like the garment of those who are slain, 

Thrust through with a sword, 

Who go down to the stones of the pit, 

Like a corpse trodden underfoot. 

You will not be joined with them in burial, 

Because you have destroyed your land 

And slain your people. 

The brood of evildoers shall never be named. 

Prepare slaughter for his children 

Because of the iniquity of their fathers, 

Lest they rise up and possess the land, 

And fill the face of the world with cities.” 

“For I will rise up against them,” says the Lord of hosts, 

“And cut off from Babylon the name and remnant, 

And offspring and posterity,” says the Lord. 

“I will also make it a possession for the porcupine, 

And marshes of muddy water; 

I will sweep it with the broom of destruction,” says the Lord of hosts (Isaiah 14:3-23, emphasis added). 


It is because Satan rules his kingdom through fear, violence, bondage, and anger, oppressing his people and striking them “in wrath with a continual stroke” that his kingdom will come to an end—it is a divided kingdom. Satan has “made the earth to tremble,” he “shook kingdoms,” he “made the world a wilderness,” “destroyed its cities,” and “did not open the house of his prisoners.” He destroyed his land—the planet earth which he took captive—and has slain his people—the human race over whom he has been ruling for the past six thousand years.  

In Revelation chapter eighteen, Babylon – the city that represents Satan’s kingdom of confusion caused by his mixture of Good and Evil as taught by the gods – is depicted as coming to an end through violenceits own violence. It was held responsible for all who have died on this earth:  


Then a mighty angel took up a stone like a great millstone and threw it into the sea, saying, “Thus with violence the great city Babylon shall be thrown down, and shall not be found anymore. The sound of harpists, musicians, flutists, and trumpeters shall not be heard in you anymore. No craftsman of any craft shall be found in you anymore, and the sound of a millstone shall not be heard in you anymore. The light of a lamp shall not shine in you anymore, and the voice of bridegroom and bride shall not be heard in you anymore. For your merchants were the great men of the earth, for by your sorcery all the nations were deceived. And in her was found the blood of prophets and saints, and of all who were slain on the earth” (Revelation 18:21-24, emphasis added). 


It is right after the eternal gospel is fully proclaimed by the one hundred and forty-four thousand that Satan’s kingdom, Babylon, will fall. The truth about Satan’s rule will be exposed, and all will see that it is he who has been punishing the human race—not God.  

But at the same time that this message seals those who receive it willingly, it also unfortunately hardens the hearts of those who reject it. Those who reject the “everlasting gospel” will receive the mark of the beast, which brands them as belonging to Satan. Then eventually God will give them over to the master they have chosen, and the final “wrath of God” will take place on this earth: 


And another angel followed, saying, “Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she has made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication.” Then a third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, “If anyone worships the beast and his image, and receives his mark on his forehead or on his hand, he himself shall also drink of the wine of the wrath of Godwhich is poured out full strength into the cup of His indignation. He shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb. And the smoke of their torment ascends forever and ever; and they have no rest day or night, who worship the beast and his image, and whoever receives the mark of his name” (Revelation 14:8-11, emphasis added). 


When every living case has been decided—when every person has accepted or rejected Jesus and His revelation of God and in effect has exercised his or her freedom of choice—then it is time for us to reap what we have sown. Those who reject grace and mercy will reap the consequences of the principles of Satan’s kingdom: punishment and condemnation. Those who accepted and lived by God’s principles of mercy and grace will reap mercy and grace. This applies to every human being, because there is no partiality with God. This is the time of harvest spoken of in the next verses of Revelation fourteen: 


Then I looked, and behold, a white cloud, and on the cloud sat One like the Son of Man, having on His head a golden crown, and in His hand a sharp sickle. And another angel came out of the temple, crying with a loud voice to Him who sat on the cloud, “Thrust in Your sickle and reap, for the time has come for You to reap, for the harvest of the earth is ripe.” So He who sat on the cloud thrust in His sickle on the earth, and the earth was reaped. Then another angel came out of the temple which is in heaven, he also having a sharp sickle. And another angel came out from the altar, who had power over fire, and he cried with a loud cry to him who had the sharp sickle, saying, “Thrust in your sharp sickle and gather the clusters of the vine of the earth, for her grapes are fully ripe.” So the angel thrust his sickle into the earth and gathered the vine of the earth, and threw it into the great winepress of the wrath of God. And the winepress was trampled outside the city, and blood came out of the winepress, up to the horses’ bridles, for one thousand six hundred furlongs (Revelation 14:14-20, emphasis added). 


God is right now holding back the four winds of strife. This means He is holding back Satan’s full fury until the eternal gospel, the good news of His character, is fully proclaimed in all the world. But once it is done, God will let go of His restraint, and Satan will then be free to do his destructive work which he has been waiting to do for a long time: 


And he cried with a loud voice to the four angels to whom it was granted to harm the earth and the sea, saying, “Do not harm the earth, the sea, or the trees till we have sealed the servants of our God on their foreheads” (Revelation 7:1-3, emphasis added). 


Then the time of trouble such as never was, spoken by Daniel, will begin. This will be the final Day of Wrath. But for those who know God, this is the moment they have been waiting for. This is the moment all God’s people—through all ages—have been waiting for, because “at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book” (Daniel 12:1).  

This deliverance is not just for the people of God who are alive during the time of trouble. This is deliverance on a grand scale. Every one that shall be found written in the book shall be delivered. This is deliverance from the law of Good and Evil and from death itself. All who have died believing in God’s promises, from Adam onwards, will be set free from the bondage of death at this time, “at the last trumpet:” 


Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed—in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpetFor the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: “Death is swallowed up in victory.” “O Death, where is your sting? O Hades, where is your victory?” The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord (1 Corinthians 15:51-56, emphasis added). 


When Michael rises up in Daniel chapter twelve verse one, it means that He lets go of those who have rejected Him while at the same time He comes to the rescue of those who are being persecuted by the rejectors of His grace. Isaiah describes the double significance of Christ’s “rising up” in chapter thirty-three: 


O Lord, be gracious to us; 

We have waited for You. 

Be their arm every morning, 

Our salvation also in the time of trouble. 

At the noise of the tumult the people shall flee; 

When You lift Yourself up, the nations shall be scattered; 

And Your plunder shall be gathered 

Like the gathering of the caterpillar; 

As the running to and fro of locusts, 

He shall run upon them (Isaiah 33:2-4, emphasis added). 


To those who rely on the Lord, He is “their arm every morning,” and their “salvation in time of trouble,” in time of persecution. But what happens to those who push Him away completely? What happens when He finally lets go of His protection in order to honor their freedom? They flee “at the noise of the tumult.” When He lifts Himself up “the nations shall be scattered.”  

Chaos, confusion, destruction and despair is the fate of those who fall into Satan’s hands. Dear Friends, we are already seeing this in the world! It is with this understanding that we need to look into such passages as this one from Hebrews chapter ten: 


For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a certain fearful expectation of judgment, and fiery indignation which will devour the adversaries. Anyone who has rejected Moses’ law dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. Of how much worse punishment, do you suppose, will he be thought worthy who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, counted the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified a common thing, and insulted the Spirit of grace? For we know Him who said, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. And again, “The Lord will judge His people.” It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God (Hebrews 10:26-31, emphasis added). 


If we willfully continue to sin—if we willfully continue to miss the mark about the character of God even after “we have received the knowledge of the truth” about the God of agape love—then “there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins.” What does this mean?  

It means that there is no longer any other way in which God could teach us about His true character of agape love. It means that there is no longer anything God can do to cleanse us from all of Satan’s lies about His pure, holy character, in which there is not an atomic particle of Good and Evil.  

So then, what is left for those who don’t believe Jesus’ testimony of a completely gentle, humble, loving, freedom-giving, unconditionally loving, impartial, absolutely non-violent, grace-giving, forgiving God? They are left with their old view of God which they inherited from Adam and Eve, and which is entirely informed by the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. They remain in that “certain expectation” that God is going to condemn them. They remain in that false understanding of God which tells them that God is going to annihilate them. They are caught by that “fiery indignation which will devour the adversaries.”  

Moses, who dealt heavily in the reward and punishment mode, decreed that anyone who broke the law should die “without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses.” Jesus never ratified this law; this was Moses’ interpretation of the law. If this is the reward and punishment mentality of Moses, who was a God-fearing man, what will happen to those who have rejected the “grace and truth” that Jesus came to bring? What will happen to those who trample Jesus’ testimony of the Father’s character of agape love “underfoot”?  

And what will happen to those who rejected the huge significance of His sacrifice on the cross, which was to show us what a holy, undefiled, non-violent, merciful, gracious, forgiving, “living” God is really like? What will happen to those who “insult the Spirit of grace” by hanging on to a reward and punishment god? 

This is what will happen to them: “‘Vengeance is mine, I will repay,’ says the Lord.” How will God repay? Will He punish them for not believing the truth about Himself? No, God will have to make a judgment, a decision, that the people have crossed the line completely into Satan’s kingdom. He will have to concede that they are married to their idols. Then He will rise up and will have to give them up. He will have to let them go. This is why “it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.” Because when God gives up on us, then we are completely in the hands of the Destroyer. There is no cruelty like that of the Destroyer: 


And they had as king over them the angel of the bottomless pit, whose name in Hebrew is Abaddon [DESTRUCTION], but in Greek he has the name Apollyon [DESTROYER] (Revelation 9:11). 


This passage has never been as relevant before as it is for us now, after the collapse of the Twin Towers. Is it really a coincidence that the one passage in Revelation that clearly pinpoints Satan, “the angel of the bottomless pit,” as the Destroyer, is found in Revelation 9:11?  

The Book of Hosea ends with the following words, which are also extremely appropriate for us, living right now: 


Who is wise? 

Let him understand these things. 

Who is prudent? 

Let him know them. 

For the ways of the Lord are right; 

The righteous walk in them, 

But transgressors stumble in them (Hosea 14:9).