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Close of Probation and the 7 Last Plagues

David Wright


David Wright

Lead/Senior Pastor, Hendersonville SDA Church


  • March 19, 2016
    11:30 AM
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Well in September of 2009 Clifton Williams was headed to the courthouse now he wasn't the one in trouble he simply was going to suborn his friend on that particular day in fact it was his cousin and he was going to be sentenced and so he was there for support and at the per side moment and here's a picture of Clifton he doesn't look too happy and you'll find out why in a minute at the per side moment that Judge Daniel Rose AK was reading this sentence Clifton let out a. Yawn anybody here yawned you know yesterday I was looking at pictures of people yawning did you know. Contagious. I'm looking I'm waiting for somebody to yawn. It was an ill timed yawn and the judge cited Clifton for contempt of court and handed down a sentence of 6 months in jail which is the maximum sentence for contempt in court all for yawning. Ironically his cousin who was scheduled to be sentence only got probation but Clifton. Got 6 months now after it was all said and done he was able to just only stay in prison for a few days but even still all for a yawn Some say you can't help beyond that something just happens and around and around it went today we are going to be continuing our series hope in the last days. And I'm going to tie that in with this piece that we're going to be talking about today but we've been looking at the coming crisis and his dreaded revival genuine or counterfeit shaken or sealed we looked at that last week worship in the national Sunday law and this week close of probation and the 7 last plagues it's in that order by the way the close of probation meaning the door is shut he that is just let them be just ill he is still and so on but then you have the 7 last plagues and then of course next week actually will be in 2 weeks heaven and eternity but you might be thinking was the penalty that the judge handed to Clifton was it too harsh Was it fair was it just and you may also think very similar things when you go through and you read about the 7 last plagues What does this say about our God. Why would a loving God Poor out 7 last plagues or the plagues arbitrary scourges on the part of God to simply punish and why these plagues specifically. Is it true that God is love and if so how does this coincide How does this fit with that is it true that all prophecy is Christo centric meaning centered on Jesus Christ and if so how does that come into account when we talk about the plagues so the questions become what do the 7 plagues do to teach us about Jesus and we're going to look at that today because I think there are some very important points we're going to look in our Bibles we're going to stay in these for a few chapters in Revelation star in Revelation Chapter 149 in 10 and then we're going to flip over to 15 and eventually 16. And I have a few other texts and I'll put those on the screen today but I want you to see this portion in your Bible. Revelation Chapter 14 and we're going to begin in verse 9 this is the 3rd angel that follows and we read this before but as a way of reviewing here we're going to pick it up again today in Revelation Chapter 14 verse 9 and there I read then a 3rd angel followed them saying with a loud voice if anyone worships the beast and his image and receive his mark on his forehead or on his hand he himself shall also drink of the wine of the wrath of God which is poured out into the cup of his evening nation. Now we have looked before what is this raft of God Well for that you might have to turn your page Revelation Chapter 15 and verse one and there we read then I saw another sign in Heaven's great and marvelous 7 angels having the 7 last play eggs for in them the wrath of God is complete and so we have the wrath of God being connected with these 7 last plagues. And then going to verse 8 it says the temple was filled with smoke and from the glory of God and from his power and no one was able to enter the temple till the 7 play of the 7 angels were completed so what is the wrath of God will be seen as the 7 last plagues and who receives them we have seen is those that receive the mark of the beast and then the question When Will Jesus come into relationship to the plagues is answered in that last text where it says no man will enter the temple till the 7 last plagues are complete. Where is the temple. Well for that we're going to look at Revelation 21 verse one I have it here on the screen or you can turn in your Bibles Revelation chapter 21 verse one and there we see we read now I saw a new heaven and a new earth for the 1st heaven the 1st earth had passed away also there was no more sea then I John saw the holy city the New Jerusalem coming down out of heaven from from God prepared as a bride adorned for her husband and I heard a loud voice from heaven same Behold the tabernacle or temple of God is with men that is his temple so notice that nobody can enter that temple until all the 7 plagues are fulfilled that must mean then that Jesus comes after the 7 plagues not before the 7 plagues in other words were not raptured before the plagues Now this concept of the rapture is a subtle deception I believe of the devil for an easy going cross list health and wealth prosperity form of Christianity if you follow God Nothing will ever harm you nothing will ever be a problem for you we find this on many popular T.V. preachers today this idea but as 7th Day Adventists who believe in God we believe that God is strong enough to hold us in his hand and to keep us secure in the time of trouble but we live in a society that says No pay no suffering Jesus came and died on the cross to give me a life of joy and happiness and prosperity and fulfillment and if you're sick it's because you haven't been blessed of God. And if you facing that is because you haven't been blessed of God The only thing you need to do is to be faithful to Jesus and He will be like sitting on a cloud right on a cloud floating to the kingdom with health wealth and prosperity they don't say it quite like that but if you listen long enough it sounds very similar but the problem with that is that it's not realistic to life because everybody goes through some sorrow in life some heartache and life some disappointment in life but Christ holds us in the disappointment we serve a Jesus who often does not deliver us from the tribulation but is with us in the tribulation we serve in Jesus who at times does not deliver us from sickness at times he does but is with us in sickness we serve in Jesus who was with Noah during the flood although the ark was being tossed and turned in the waves we serve Jesus who was with Joseph when he was betrayed by his brothers when he was lied about by part of his wife. Who was with Joseph in prison we serve Jesus who was with Shadrach me shack and Abednego in the fiery flames we serve in Jesus who with Daniel was with Daniel in the Lion's Den. We serve a Jesus who was with Joe in the midst of his boils and afflictions financial adversity when his house fell down we serve Jesus who was with Peter in his bondage we serve a Jesus who understands suffering who had nails driven through his hands a crown of thorns on his head who was rejected. We serve a Jesus who is fully capable of meeting every one of life's trials and tribulations that is our Christ he is powerful enough to keep us through the time of trouble so Jesus will come after the plagues But how do we know that you might be asking well clue number one no man where as we saw was able to enter the temple in till after the 7 last play. But we have Clue number 2 as well for that let's turn to Revelation Chapter 16 verse 15 Revelation Chapter 16 and verse 15 this is in the midst of these 7 last plagues but notice in verse 15 before we get to the 7th it says Revelation $1615.00 be whole I am coming future as a thief Blessed is He who watches and keeps his garments lest he walk naked and they see his shame So wait a minute this is after the 6th play. Now what sense would it make for the Revelator to say he is coming as a thief after the announcement of the 6 plague if he comes as a thief before the plagues do you see the reasoning it would make no sense to say in verse 15 he's coming like a thief if he had already come like a thief in the past at the beginning of the 1st play so to those who believe in the rapture you can ask them tell me what is it like when he comes as a thief that's the word that they play on oh well he he snatches people away and you can be on an airplane. And someone snatched over here and someone snatched over there maybe the pilot gets snatched away people are driving down the road and a person gets Nash and there's an accident to be in the field you know and and one will be taken and the other will be left be 2 in bed and and the husband says hey where's my wife she's gone. Another verse we could look at 2nd Peter chapter 3 verse 10 it says but the day of the Lord will come like a what see if. But that's not all there heavens will disappear with a roar and the elements will be destroyed by fire and the earth and everything in it will be laid bare so then you can tell your friend so when he comes as a thief it's really not secret at all in fact. The elements are burned up. So this thief imagery is that he comes quickly. Is the fact that when he comes people are unprepared and they don't expect him Matthew $2444.00 Jesus says Therefore you also be ready for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect the coming of Jesus as a thief is always in reference to time never in reference to the manner of his coming. The 2nd Coming is a surprise to those that are prepared that's the whole idea of a thief. I heard the story of a couple that were new in the neighborhood and they were still getting everything settled and they had their barbecue out back and then one day they noticed their barbecue was gone and they said oh no Somebody stole our grill What do we do with not much you really can do you can file a report and they'll take it but you know how that goes. And then lo and behold a few days later their grill showed back up it was right there on their patio and when they opened it up they found a letter inside that said thank you so much we are in a bind we had invited people over our grill had died we borrowed yours forgive us for not asking here are 2 tickets to the game in town go enjoy They were excited about this this was so nice so certainly we understand we have good neighbors and they and they went to enjoy the sporting event and the thief came back and cleaned out their house. The 2nd Coming is a surprise to the prepared I don't know of too many thieves that knock on the door and say Here I come so Jesus will come to get his people after the place 1st clue no man was able to enter the temple until after the 7th last plagues the 2nd clue Christ announces his future coming after 6 plays have already been poured out so we know and we can conclude that Jesus is coming after not before the 7 last plagues Now these plagues are called the 7 last play why are they called the 7 last plagues were there any plagues before do you recall yes back in Egypt with Pharaoh but how many plagues were there then 10 wide 10 in Egypt and 7 at in time. Well the 1st 3 feet when we go back to Egypt the 1st 3 affected the general land go back and check it out the last 7 affected only the Egyptians and this is good news the last 7 only affected the Egyptians while the Israelites were on touched I propose to you that in the same way the 7 last plagues do not touch people. Just like the 7 last plagues of Egypt did not touch God's people then and you may be saying this sounds like good news but how can I know this for sure well Paul writes in 1st Corinthians Chapter 10 verse 11 about the children in Israel he mentions the pillar of cloud he mentions the Red Sea the wilderness experience the drinking from the rock and the serpents and all of that and then in verse 11 he says this right here now all these things happen to them as what examples and they were written for our admonition. Upon whom the ends of the ages have come so Paul says they are an example an admonition which is authoritative counsel so you have the children of Israel as an example for God's people in the last days stop and think both groups are persecuted both groups are pressured to break God's law both groups appear helpless and I would say both are protected during the plagues both are delivered by God after the plagues So now let's look and die then a little bit more to this message of these last plagues that we find in Revelation Chapter 16 because we still need to answer does God punish just for the sake of punishing Why would a loving God pour out 7 last plagues after the close of probation and why these specific plagues. And what do they teach us about Jesus so we're still in Revelation now in chapter 16 verse one Revelation Chapter 16 and verse one are we froze up there. See if you can go one more and we're going to read verse one and Revelation Chapter 16 says then I heard a voice from the temple saying to the 7 angels go and pour out the bowls of the wrath of God on the earth now the 1st 5 plagues all will have time to deal with this time but the 1st 5 plagues are literal they are not symbolic or spiritual plagues you read Revelation you read great controversy they're all literal plagues the 1st 5 but the question is what is the deeper message of God's in time church in the plagues and so we keep reading Revelation Chapter 16 verse 2 so the 1st Wynton poured out his bowl upon the earth and a fallin loathsome sword came upon the man who had the mark of the beast and those who worshiped his image so right off the back who did the sword fall upon those that had the mark of the beast who then did not fall upon God's people so played number one we have file an evil swords like a boil now and as a student missionary I better not tell you and slip and tell you the name but I had some roommates that had one developed a really big boil right here on his side and I have my theories about not taking enough showers and what have you but anyway it got to be about this big. And it just got more and more infected and it would stand out from the skin about an inch or so and it was just terrible it would weep through his clothes if he'd borrow mine and weave through mine we will get into that. He couldn't sleep well at night because you roll over and this thing hurts and it is and then you open it up and it was terrible so the 1st play why did those that inforce the mark of the beast receive and take this plague. Well you may recall from other sermons I believe it will be said if you receive the mark of the beast we will give you physical security you don't want to suffer pain you don't want to be persecuted take the mark of the beast so the 1st play is physical affliction that says those who enforce the mark of the beast could not deliver on what they have promised that's key could not deliver on what they promised so played number one man's message if you accept the mark of the beast you will enjoy physical security it's an easy way out they say but God's message is all physical security is in who's to Christ that's right all physical security is in Christ I would rather trust Jesus with my body for physical security than go to some spiritualistic healer now to receive boils later wouldn't you all physical security is in Christ and we're fine that every play teaches us about Jesus saw 91 you know this very well we're beginning in verse 5 You shall not be afraid of the terror by night nor the arrow that flies by day nor of the pestilence that walks in darkness nor the destruction that lays waste at noonday a 1000 may fall at your side in 10000 and your right hand but it shall not come near you amen all me with your eyes so you look and see the reward of the wicked because you have made the Lord who is my refuge even the most high your dwelling place no evil shall befall you nor shall any plagued come near your dwelling is not good news. I believe that's good news. So we're going to continue on Revelation Chapter 16 now verse 3 we're into the 2nd bowl being poured out and we read there then the 2nd angel poured out his bowl on the sea and it became blood as of a dead man and every living creature in the sea died so playing Number 2 the sea becomes like blood and everything in the sea dies What's that going to do to shipping what's that going to do the economy you remember the oil leak in the Gulf in 2011 it froze up and stopped everything real quick didn't it but those who give the mark of the Beast What do they say it will enable you to buy and sell and so played number 2 man's message if you accept the mark of the beast you'll enjoy economic security isn't that the line that they gave but God's message here all economic security is in crisis again they cannot deliver on the promise. 33 Verse 16 we have read this before your bread will be given him his water will be sure all economic security comes from Christ in great controversy 629 we read this that God who cared for Alija will not pass by one of his self-sacrifice in children he who numbers the hairs of their head will care for them and in time of famine they shall be satisfied while the wicked are dying from hunger and pestilence angels will shield the righteous and supply their wants angels is not amazing. God is the only true source of our economic security. And so we continue on to the 3rd and Revelation Chapter 16 beginning verse 4 then the 3rd angel poured out his bowl on the rivers and springs of water and they became blood. And I heard the angel of the waters saying you are right just the Lord the one who is and who was and who is to be because you have judged these things for they have shed the blood of the saints and the prophets and you have given them blood to drink for it is their just due now before the close of probation there will be some martyrdom but after the close of probation there will be no more moderate martyrdom why not because we're not playthings of the devil the only reason there will be martyrdom is because the faith of the Christian martyrs will stimulate some whether it be the Court judge or somebody on the jury or some onlooker to accept the Gospel what do they say the blood of the martyrs is sieved But this is after the close of probation everybody has already made their all timid and final decision they will not change their mind at this point. And so I believe God will not allow life to be taken once we get to this point so during the plagues the devil cannot take our life our life is hid in Christ if we are committed to Christ our lives will not be a plaything of the evil one and so played number 3 man's message if you accept the market to be used we will guard your life but God's message your life all that you are everything ultimately can only be his in Jesus Christ day man. And so you have the 1st plague all physical security is in Christ 2nd plague all economic security is in Christ 3rd play my life is in crossed and then we get to verse 8 of Revelation Chapter 16. And there we read then the 4th Angel poured out his bowl on the sun then the power was given to him to scorch men with fire men are scorched with fire what is the object in this controversy we've talked about it before worship is the object rather than Creator worship they have passed what kind of law the Sunday law and what they didn't realize is that the object of that law they have passed has been the object of pagan worship down through ages Egyptians worship the sun in M.N. RA. Babylonians worship the sun and Bellmawr do the Persians worship the sun. And meth RA ism. ROMANS worship the invincible Sun God has been the object of worship yet now unknowingly it scorches man played number for man's message all must worship on the day of the sun God's message all true worship is in Christ and so you have the 1st play all physical securities in Christ 2nd play all economic securities and price 3rd plague my life is in Christ and 4th play the center of my worship is in Christ because all true worship is where it's in Christ it's faithfulness to Christ my life my whole being is in Christ. My finances my money my body all of it is in Christ and then the last one we're going to look at this morning. Revelation Chapter 16 verse to him in the 5th angel poured out his bowl on the throne of the beast and his became Kingdom became full of darkness and they nod their tongues because of the pain that was verse 10 so playing number 5 darkness on the throne of the beast they looked to the beast for light but there was only darkness Jesus says in John 8 1st well I am the light of the world Jesus said I'm the light I am the truth and so they look to the beast power on an earthly throne for light and so the 5th play we find here man's message we are the source of light and of truth. But again they can't deliver God's message all true light and truth is in Christ Jesus is the center of every topic of the last day of Vince and we must not focus on the play but on the promises beautiful promises like this one and Isaiah $32.00 beginning verse one behold a king will reign in righteousness and princes will rule with justice a man will be a hiding place from the wind and a cover from the tempest as rivers of water in a dry place is the shadow of a great rock in a weary land or this one and some 46 verse one you know this one God is our refuge and strength a very present help in trouble we can even say in the time of trouble. Therefore we will not fear even though the earth be removed and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea those waters roar and be troubled though the mountains shake with its swelling there's a river whose stream shall make glad the City of God the Holy Place of the tabernacle of the most high God is in the midst of her she shall not be moved a God shall help her just at the break of dawn. And then another one that we've already looked at so many one verse 7000 may fall at your right side or at your side 10000 at your right hand but it shall not come near you only with your eyes so you look and see the reward of the wicked and then this one in Isaiah 33 Verse 16 we've already said bread will be given him his water we'll be sure we need to focus on the promises that will bring us through the plagues we'll touch on the last 2 next week but I want to hear another quote here from great controversy 629 it says that God who cared for a lie will not pass by one of his self-sacrifice in children we looked at this already but I want to read it again he who numbers they hairs of their head will care for them and in time of famine they shall be satisfied while the wicked are dying from hunger and pestilence angels heal the righteous and supply their once get out your great controversy underlined that star it highlighted now I've heard people say well there's no intercessor in the time of trouble therefore Christ will leave us and therefore we'll be on our own will have to cleanse our fists and grit our teeth and we just have to bear it friends the truth of the matter is if you are left on your own in the time of trouble you're not going to make it. Nobody makes it on their own string nobody makes on their own power. Whatever living without an intercessor means it doesn't mean that Jesus will leave us where was the father when Christ was dying on the cross he was right there could you just see him No Did Jesus know his father was there I believe he did do the Father love him any less when he was dying on the cross no did the cart father care for Jesus any less when he was dying on the cross you know when Jesus was dying on the cross he depended on the relationship he had with the Father before the cross and by faith he held on in time of trouble for him did Jesus go through rejection on the cross did Peter deny Him Well some people deny us to do this be trade him will some people betray us the disciples for sake him well some people for sake us all poor me oh poor me somebody put trade me today poor me poor me somebody rejected me today you know what. Jesus in love I believe has given you and I lessons to teach us to trust him today so rather than we in your self pity because somebody didn't smile and you when you went to church today oh that place is so unfriendly since I didn't smile at me today I'm going to leave there today oh look at the elders doing today. Maybe Jesus is teaching you a lesson of trust maybe a loving God allows people to disappoint you at times he doesn't cause it but maybe he's working that out for your own good so you can learn to trust Him and Him alone. He on the cross Jesus experienced physical pain they drove nails through his hands he experienced psychological pain they forsook him. He experienced emotional pain he was hurt and bruised when Judas denied Him So on the cross Christ went through an experience where he went through a deep period of darkness and a time of trouble but he trusted the father although he could not see or feel the Father's presence because he learned to trust the father in every aspect of his life and Jesus knew the father's heart and he knew that he had to deny what was going on around him and by faith grassed always happening above him and so in that time of trouble it will feel it will seem everything will overwhelm us and we're going to have to grasp onto that relationship we've had in the past and say No I know God I know he's going to see it through I know he's fair and he's just I know I can trust him and I'm going to keep looking to him and he alone will be mine deliverance and that's why Jesus said his last breath is not one of doubt it was not my God my God why you for saken me I was not his last breath he did go through a period of where is the father. When I'm going through this and we will go through things similar to that at times we will wonder during those times of trouble has God forsaken me I'll be a natural thing comes to all of us at times we go through that today we go through our trials and we say God where are you God you for saken me but that wasn't jesus last words Jesus last words were into your hands I commit my spirit in essence Jesus last words were father I trust you Father My life is in your hands. So in the time of trouble when every earthly support is cut off when all of our emotions tell us one thing we hang on by faith did you know that you have to train captive canaries to sing you priority know that but if you just have a canary in a cage is not going to saying unless you train it not too long ago we got an opportunity to go down to Brazil and got to see 5000 rare birds and birds are just beautiful and their feathers are beautiful and all the variety and almost like like fish under the ocean just the detail is magnificent. But if you want to train a canary to sing you have to take the canary by itself and cover the cage and then you whistle to this canary to train it a song a tune so when the canary is in darkness it can only hear the voice of the trainer and it listens to that voice and it learns the song to sing and every canary learns a different song and the song that it learns in the darkness it will never forget and Revelation 153 God teaches us a song speaks of it there in 153 for those that go through the time of trouble let's look at Revelation Chapter 15 verse 3 we read there they sing the song of Moses the servant of God in the song of the Lamb. Great and marvelous are your works Lord God Almighty Mighty just and true are your ways. Of the saints they sing the song of Moses and the Lamb What is the song of Moses Well it tells us right there we just read it in verse 3 great and marvelous are your works true are your ways. So when we go through the time of Jacob's trouble when every earthly support is cut off we learn to trust Jesus we learn that Jesus is our physical security we learn that Jesus is our economic security we learned Jesus is our life. We learn the Jesus the center of our worship and we learn that Jesus is the one. The center of all truth Jesus gives the song a song of Moses and of the lamb you might recall Moses went through the plagues and God delivered Israel after the plagues but through those plagues they learned to trust God and they sang the song of Moses they went through the Red Sea when the Egyptian armies were drawing near and they came out the other side untouched God is teaching us a song I believe through the trials of our life. God teaches the song to sing in the heartaches of our life. God is teaches the song to sing the disappointments of our life and as we learn that song it's the song of deliverance is the song the great and marvelous are his ways. It's the song of our unique experience you know we have an experience just like you but in your tears in your heart ache in your disappointment in the brokenness of life in the dark moments of life it's then that we often learn to trust so might be saying I'm not going to that my lives wonderful now you have any Band-Aids you may not need those all Band-Aids today but you better keep one around because some day you're going to skin your knuckles some day you're going to skin your knees. Because someday you're going to face a trial where you need to trust God some day you're going to face a heartache where you need to trust God. And if he gives you a little trial today thank him for it and if he gives you a big trial today thank him for it some somebody here I imagine has broken hearted somebody today is facing some real difficult experiences in life you may be stressed out about how you're going to make the payment for next semester How you going to turn in enough money to graduate and if you lost your job maybe it's a relationship that has gone sour maybe it's a health difficulty that is racking your body and you may be saying Pastor I don't have to wait for a future time of trouble now is my time of trouble my life is falling apart you don't know what I'm going through at home you don't know what I'm going through a school you don't know what I'm going to work with my parents my kids my spouse friend whatever you're experiencing today Christ will hold you in his own terms he is the only true source of refuge Matthew 11 verse 28 come to me. All you who labor and are heavy laden and I will give you rest or your burden today are you heavy laden today if you are going to a time of trouble to day he is there for you now. He wants to teach you in that time of trouble you are going to today how to trust him so when every earthly support is cut off you can trust him tomorrow. Jesus learn to trust him in times of trouble before the cross so he can trust fully at the greatest time of trouble at the cross we trust him today will you take his hand today where you place your life in him today dear Emily father as we have looked just briefly this morning at what the time of trouble may look like and how it reveals what is in the heart and how it takes total trust and surrender in every area where I pray that we will practice that same surrender today and the trials that we are facing in the things that seem overwhelming. All consuming impossible we don't see any way out and perhaps we feel very much alone and discouraged but Lord we know that you are with us at every form of security be it financial or physical or economic our life our worship everything only truly is name known and revealed in Christ help us to be in Christ today may you lift us up May you carious on what may you show us the way. As we follow today Jesus' name. This media was brought to you by audio verse a website dedicated to spreading God's word through free sermon audio and much more if you would like to know more about audio over or if you would like to listen to more service lead to visit W W W audio verse or.


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