THE SEVEN ANGELS WITH THE SEVEN LAST PLAGUES
"And they sing the song of Moses the servant of
God, and the song of the Lamb…" (Rev. 15:3).
When Israel, standing on the banks of the Red Sea, looked back and saw
their old masters dead upon the shore, their hearts thrilled with joy
and the sands of the desert vibrated and re-vibrated as Moses led in the
song of victory and deliverance. The allusion here is to the
Israelites of old who, after having passed through the Red Sea dry shod,
thus securing perfect and blessed deliverance from the bestial system of
Egypt, stood upon the shore singing the song of Moses, Miriam and the
women playing their tumbrels, while their enemies with their chariots
and their chosen captains perished in the waters (Exodus 15).
Here is another sea — a sea of glass and fire. Here is another
company, standing on another shore, that has won the victory over its
enemies. Who might this company be? What might be the sea
upon whose shore they sing the song of triumph and praise to their Lord
and Deliverer? Methinks I have stood upon that very shore.
As surely as the raging sea bespeaks multitudes of surging, clamoring,
restless, sinning humanity, so does the exquisite sea of glass represent
an assembled throng of transformed saints in whose hearts the spirit of
the Lamb rules. This great sea of the sons of God is calm, serene,
tranquil, and quiet — the bestial nature has been dealt with and these
abide in the peace, joy, righteousness, and power of the kingdom of God.
Ah, yes, I have stood upon that shore, yea, and do stand with an
innumerable company of men and women whose faces are set and whose
hearts are fixed to do only and completely the will of the Father.
These are they who live and walk in the Spirit, the firstborn-destined
who are being delivered from the power of the beast. The glassy
sea is here mingled with fire — the fiery trials and processings
by which the Father purifies His sons, sharpening their vision, whetting
the appetite for things eternal and heavenly, slackening the desire for
all that is earthly and worldly.
How the courts of heaven ring for joy as this illustrious company sings
the song of Moses the servant of God! But there is a new note and
a new stanza in that song. Not only is it the song of Moses but it
is also the song of the Lamb! Truly this is one of the most
fascinating songs mentioned in all the Word of God! The song of
Moses and the Lamb — whatever can it mean? In transfixed wonder
John caught the echo of this mighty anthem as it burst from the lips of
those who have conquered the power of the beast — the bestial nature of
man, and the bestial system of the world. It is the song of the
great leader of Israel just after he and his followers had passed in
safety through the Red Sea. It is the song of Moses because it
voices the praise of those who, like Israel of old at the Red Sea, have
been miraculously delivered from an awful tyranny and bondage.
Now what is the song of the Lamb? The teachers and preachers in
the church systems suppose it means that the blood-washed throng, the
believers out of all the ages, around the throne of God in heaven, whose
toils are over and done with forevermore, are those singing, "Worthy is
the Lamb that was slain!" And among this throng they include all
who are saved by free grace alone, including all the baby Christians and
all the carnal Christians in all the carnal church systems of man, and
including those who achieved an eleventh-hour death-bed repentance, and
now stand with all the saints of all the ages before the throne of God
in heaven singing, "Worthy is the Lamb!" If this is your
conception, my friend, you frustrate the meaning, for that is not the
thought conveyed by the Holy Spirit in this beautiful passage. The
seer of Patmos, who was in the spirit on the Lord’s day saw, not a
company saved by free grace, but a company of full overcomers who had
gotten the victory over the beast, and over his image, and over his
mark, and over the number of his name. These overcomers
stand upon the sea of glass mingled with fire, having been purged
and purified in the consuming fire of God, now having the harps of God,
and it is they who sing the song of Moses and the Lamb!
The Lamb is first and foremost our Lord Jesus Christ, together with the
body of the Lamb, that glorious company which has followed Him
all the way to mount Zion by way of mount Calvary. The song of the
Lamb is not the song of sinners saved by grace, as glorious as that is;
it is the song of joy out of sorrow, of peace in the midst of storm, of
perfection out of suffering, of light out of darkness, of righteousness
triumphing over sin, of victory snatched from the jaws of defeat, of
life conquering death. It is the song of the OVERCOMER! The
"Lamb" bespeaks the humiliation and suffering that leads to life and
exaltation. Ah, there is no victory without a battle, no overcomer
without the powers of death and hell. My soul, consider! what
was that which to the seer of Patmos made the harmony complete?
It was the vision of a vast multitude taking up the song — the
experience — of the Lamb of sacrifice. There was a time when, to
that multitude, the spectacle of sacrifice would have brought discord to
the heart; but in the completed harmony it brings joy. The
sweetest music is the song that is born of experience! Until we
thoroughly understand how suffering is the preparation for reigning, we
shall never be enthralled by the song of the Lamb. Do you not
know, precious elect of the Lord, that this was from the outset of your
call to sonship the goal of your being — to be made perfect
through suffering? It was for this that your first
innocence was clouded. It was for this that your first joy was
dimmed. It was for this that you were lowered from the garden of
God to the field of thorns and thistles. It was for this that your
first hope was shaken — that you might reach mount Zion by the steps of
mount Calvary. The minor chords of testing and trial played
together with the chords of faith and patience to harmonize into the
symphony of perfection and glory. The wilderness of the Son of man
is better than the garden of Adam. The morning stars sang together
over your untried nature; but there awaits a yet grander music — when
the harps of God shall proclaim that you have conquered all and stand
triumphant in His image!
It is also the song of the Lamb because it speaks of the triumph of
God’s elect which leads them into the glorious liberty, image, and power
of God’s Christ. It is sung by those who have GOTTEN THE
VICTORY OVER THE BEAST — that is, those who through grace and by the
inworkings of HIS LIFE were delivered from the delusions of the bestial
spirit and system of this world to follow the Lamb to mount Zion.
It is a song of experience, and only those who have overcome all things
and stand in the glory of God within the precincts of the throne
zone are able to join in that paean of praise!
People entertain all sorts of ideas about the song of Moses and the
Lamb. Many view these as two different songs, the first about
God’s saving power and deliverance, the second about God’s grace and
mercy. While those elements are certainly included, it does not by
any means imply that this company is singing two songs, one of Moses and
another of the Lamb, but that the same song is at the same time the song
of Moses and the song of the Lamb. Truly, the song of Moses
is the song of the Lamb! Even as Moses taught his people to sing
his song, so the Lamb teaches His people to sing this song. And
essentially they are alike, singing the same theme, for the song of
Moses is caught up into the greater glory of the song of the Lamb.
Thus, the song of Moses and the Lamb is really one song
sung only by the overcomers!
How can we know this? Because John gives us the song!
Consider what he says. "And they sing the song of Moses
the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying…"
And then the song begins! We don’t know the melody of the
song, but that is of no importance, for the great truth the Holy Spirit
would impress upon us is that throughout the scriptures a "song" denotes
a "message." In fact, a song represents both praise and a
message. It is praise that bears a message, or beyond that,
praise which is birthed out of revelation and experience with God.
You can tell the spiritual level of a person by the songs he sings!
A person’s "song" will always express his depth of understanding and
relationship with God. When we receive new revelation from the
Lord, experientially inworked into our lives, a new song is created.
I look back over old sermons, and sometimes I have to say to myself, "I
could not preach that again." Thank God, He has been teaching me
through the years of my walk in Him, leading into a fuller knowledge of
truth and a deeper walk in the Spirit. Oh, yes! There is
continuously a new song — a new revelation, a new message,
a fresh word, a higher experience in God for this day, and for all the
days to come! Those who sing the new song have outgrown the old
ones. They no longer express our experience or satisfy our needs.
God is even now preparing a people, a royal priesthood, sons of the most
High; and while the church world continues on with its time-honored
traditions and childish delusions, singing about flying away to cabins
in the corner of gloryland, or to mansions over the hill-top, a people
is arising in the earth with a new and wonderful vision — to become
kings and priests unto God — their hearts vibrating with the melodious
strains of a new song, the song of a people with a purpose, a
company gathered out of the generations, grown up into the fullness of
Christ, conquering every enemy within and without, which in due time
shall be led forth to reveal to creation the manifest expression
of His image, character, and nature, the revelation of His glory, power,
and dominion, with an outflow of life, light, and love sent to change
the course of history, transform the nations, and restore all men and
all things back into God. This is the company standing upon the
sea of glass mingled with fire, singing the song of Moses and the
Lamb. And what a song it is!
Ah, those who receive this call, those who hold this vision,
those who cherish this hope, those who participate in this
dealing and share in this experience, indeed sing the song of
Moses and the Lamb! This song can be sung by none but those
apprehended, those who have conquered to stand upon the sea of glass and
fire. This is the ineffable, preeminent Song; ineffable because it
strikes a chord, the vibration of which cannot be discerned by the
carnal man; preeminent because it is the Song of the Lamb who stands
in the midst of the throne, the King of kings and Lord of lords, the
High Priest of our profession, who in all things has preeminence!
This "song" is undoubtedly the truth of the divine purpose of the ages,
or the "present truth," as we often call it. Many of those who now
read these lines sense the establishment of a new order by the glorious
appearing of Christ within. Within my innermost being there is an
understanding and a hope that refuses to be quieted or stilled. It
is the hope of overcoming all things, awaking in His likeness, with a
greater glory and power than anything we have known in the past.
My spirit sings the glad Hosannas of a new morning of joy, because of
the vision of the greater glory and life of Christ now being raised up
in His body on earth. And that song within persists until it
purges out all the negative influences of the past, and cleanses me
throughout. Ah, my beloved, does your spirit within you sing the
glad Hosannas of this new day? Does this new song, this
fresh word, this pristine working of life and resurrection power purge
out all the error, carnality, sin, and death, making you pure even
as He is pure?
This indeed is the glory of this new day to which we are come! The
glory of Christ is now arising upon His elect sons. He is among us
now in a new and greater degree of His presence, and His greater
presence within is imparting a glorious song of joy and victory.
Our long battle for the land of our inheritance is coming to an end.
We are approaching the throne where reigns the King! We are
assured that a new day is dawning not only for us, but for all the
nations and for all the peoples of earth! God is about to fill the
whole earth with His glory! The song within is Christ giving a
fresh word of promise and fulfillment! If we have learned this
"song," there is surely much cause for "abounding with thanksgiving,"
for it means that our great and heavenly Father has taken us into His
confidence and revealed to us the hidden things of His eternal purpose.
Thereby He has dispelled the darkness with which we were surrounded, and
brought us out of our Babylon of confusion. The many unanswered
questions which raised only doubts and fears within, have been clarified
by the clear revelation of the Spirit. Now we see His glory as it
is made up of His infinite wisdom, almighty power, divine righteousness,
and unconditional and abounding love. Truly the Lord has put a
song in our mouths — the song of Moses and the Lamb! It is a song
which grows more melodious as we continue to sing it unto the Lord and
to one another, and ultimately to every nation and people and to all
creation! And what joy and peace that song will bring!
As I pointed out, we don’t know the melody of the song in a literal way,
but that does not matter, for the great truth is that throughout the
scriptures a "song" denotes a "message." You could put a
hundred different melodies to the words and not one of them would
change the message! The message is what God is after and it is
also what the overcomer is after. And the message is just this: "Great
and marvelous are Thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are Thy
ways, thou King of saints. Who shall not fear Thee, O Lord, and
glorify Thy name? for Thou only art holy: for all nations shall
come and worship before Thee; for Thy judgments are made manifest"
(Rev. 15:3-4). Now, my beloved brethren, see if you can sing that
song! Someone says, "Well, they are just words, I think I can sing
it!" But you see, dear one, it’s not a song like the songs of
earth — "song" is the symbol, the code word signifying a message.
Hear the message…see if the message strikes a chord in your heart, see
if the message resonates in your spirit.
See if from the depths of being you can confidently proclaim, "Great and
marvelous are Thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are Thy ways."
It is the acknowledgement that all His ways in us, all His works in us,
all His dealings in our lives, and everything He has injected into
our experience to conform us to His will and image, the good and the
evil, the blessings and the tragedies, the joyful and the sorrowful —
all is just and true. Sometimes I
write to people and say, "do trust you are experiencing God’s very best"
— and truly His best is what HE KNOWS is best for us even if we
do not comprehend it! Daily the Lord manifests His faithfulness to
us and we bear witness that His ways are altogether right. There
is no denying of the testings and provings that come our way, yet in the
spirit the fruits of His dealings are immense and amazing!
Beyond the manifold blessings and the unspeakable glory — also every
bitter experience, every valley of the shadow of death, every sorrow and
seeming tragedy, all the suffering, testing, proving, pruning,
stripping, and fires of purification were just and
true — and the wonderful truth gaining access and blooming in
our hearts is that all of God’s works in us are great and
marvelous — wonderful and awe-inspiring! Oh, yes! Can
you sing that song? Can you truthfully say, "I have never grumbled
against your will, I have never accused you concerning the things that
have happened in my life, I’ve never blamed you for any problems and
disappointments, I’ve always confessed that you were just and true and
faithful in everything that came my way." I do not ask whether you
can make yourself sing it, but is it the spontaneous, rapturous
melody humming in your soul? He who sings this song does not
question God as to why this or that happened, or why God
let it happen, or why it never seems to end sometimes. "I
trusted you, and look what happened." That’s not the right song!
Those who sing the song of Moses and the Lamb have come to the place
where they are assured and know beyond any hesitation or doubt that
always and in all things God is in control, there is
divine purpose in all things, and nothing can happen
outside of God’s will. Oh, what a song is this!
Can you also sing that HE is the Lord God Almighty, and the King
of kings? I am reminded of something I read some years
ago. At that time Bolivia, South America, was facing a national
election and the nation was divided between the Christians and the
Mayans. As a group of brethren in New York joined in intercession
for Bolivia while the election outcome was still unknown, the following
prophecy was given:
The leaders you see are not the leaders. Many of the leaders in
the church who call themselves apostles and prophets are not.
Present world leaders and those being elected are not the true leaders.
As it was in the days of Moses, Pharaoh was the recognized leader,
but God was leading through Moses.
In the day of (another) Pharaoh, Joseph was the true leader.
In the day of Saul, David was God’s anointed leader.
In the day of Ahab, Elijah was leading through the Word of the Lord.
In the day of Nebuchadnezzar, Daniel was leading through his
revelation of God.
In the day of the king of Assyria, Hezekiah’s prayer and God’s answer
through Isaiah were leading.
In the day of Jeremiah, the kings were not leading: Jeremiah alone
pronounced the seventy years of captivity and the coming judgment.
In the day of Herod, John the Baptist was the forerunner for Jesus
Christ Himself, who was and is leading.
Though the nations rage, the Lord sits on His throne. They
think they are in power, but the Lord puts His hook in their noses and
brings them where He wants them to be (Ezekiel 38:4).
It is God who raises up leaders and takes them down, and His true,
chosen leaders are about to emerge — those who have been in the
time of transition and preparation, who will speak with a clear voice
God’s will and heart for this day.
Many of the leaders you see are not the leaders, Jesus is leading,
and His true leaders are emerging.
The song continues, "Who shall not fear Thee, O Lord, and glorify Thy
name?" Who is the fool that would dare to doubt God’s
authority and power, who is the fool who would blame God for anything?
The inference is that all the fools of the world shall, in the final
outcome, fear the Lord and glorify His name. ALL shall honor Him
and give Him glory! Is that the song within your heart, my
beloved? "For Thou only art holy." Can we not see by
these beautiful words that our only hope of holiness is Him living in
The song goes on, "For all nations shall come and worship before
Thee; for Thy judgments are made manifest." Can you sing
that song, my beloved brother, my precious sister? Oh, I would to
God that all who name the name of Christ could sing that song! How
many people in hundreds of nations around the world have lived and died
through long millenniums without ever hearing the only saving name known
to man? It is strange that those who call themselves Christians,
who believe that God is the all-wise Creator, that God is all-powerful
and infinite in love, and that His Christ died for every man and is
Himself Lord of all, will, in the very next breath consign the vast
billions of earth’s inhabitants to eternal damnation in hell.
A television preacher taught on this very subject one day, and
assured everyone that if those heathen went to hell forever it certainly
wasn’t God’s fault. He used the illustration of a snakebite victim
who couldn’t make it to the hospital in time to be healed. What an
absurd, weak, and inattentive God that preacher serves!
What a commentary on the Christians’ weak faith that they so often speak
and act as if the kingdom of God might perhaps not win out, as if the
gates of hell might ultimately prevail, as if the unbelief of Adam were
stronger than the claims of Calvary and the sin of man more powerful
than the precious blood of Christ! Perish such craven fears!
God plans and executes; what He initiates, He completes.
Redemption is not a lifeless philosophy, but a living force, and a
divinely omnipotent power. The Saviour of the whole wide world is
not a dead Christ lying in a tomb to which we make pilgrimages, but is
"the first and the last, and the Living One…alive forevermore" and "has
the keys of death and of hell" and "has all power in heaven and
in earth" who "is not willing that any
should perish, but that all should come to repentance."
Let us then sing the song of Moses and the Lamb, let us sing with all
our heart and might that ALL NATIONS SHALL COME AND WORSHIP BEFORE THEE,
FOR THY JUDGMENTS ARE MADE MANIFEST! Let us press on in full
assurance that His kingdom shall consume all other kingdoms and that His
cause will triumph in all realms everywhere until GOD IS ALL IN
There are millions of sincere believers today who are defiled by the
carnal-minded doctrines of the harlot church systems and they can
neither learn nor sing this song! Their hearts are unable to
confess the glad truth that all nations shall come and worship before
our glorious Father because His judgments are made manifest.
Either they suppose that all the nations from Adam until now are beyond
restoration to the love and salvation of God, or they hold to the
erroneous notion that God’s judgments only punish and destroy men or
drive them to blaspheme His name. Their hearts are unable to
perceive the wonderful truth that it is indeed the manifest judgments of
God which induce all the nations to come and worship before the
Lord! Somehow they cannot sing that song! How my ransomed
soul exults with joy unspeakable and full of glory, giving thanks to God
for birthing this glad anthem deep within my spirit so that now I can
sing the song of Moses and the Lamb! Isn’t it wonderful!
The song of Moses and the Lamb reveals the two-fold ministry of
the sons of God: judgment and mercy. On the
one hand they shall exhibit His surpassing grace, while, on the other
hand, they bring His manifest judgments in the earth. The more the
spirit of revelation unfolds the truth, the clearer we see God’s
judgments in proper perspective, that they are corrective in nature and
designed to bring forth a state of rightness in the earth. They
are not executed, as many believe, in unmerciful and unholy vengeance,
for mercy and grace shall balance the score.
Judgments are desperately needed, but they are ever tempered with mercy,
and when they have fulfilled their purpose, the judgments end, and the
whole earth shall be full of His life and glory. Mercy recognizes
the need of justice. Mercy knows that every mountain and hill must
be brought low, but mercy is there to fill up the valley once the
subduing has taken place. As the Psalmist wrote, "Justice
and judgment are the habitation of Thy throne: mercy and
truth shall go before Thy face" (Ps. 89:14). And again, "I
will sing of MERCY and JUDGMENT: unto Thee, O Lord, will I
sing" (Ps. 101:1). Truly these words are reminiscent of the song
of Moses and the Lamb!
With this thought of judgment and mercy firmly in mind, let us consider
some certain and indisputable promises of God to specific peoples and
nations. We all know the awful magnitude of the sin and judgment
which came upon Sodom and Gomorrah. Jude tells us that they are
"set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal (Gr:
age-during) fire" (Jude 7). The fire was not quenched until it had
finished its work and those cities were so completely destroyed that
today there is no remaining trace of them to be found.
Archeologists can only conjecture as to where they may have been
located. One would think that after such a complete work of
judgment you could just forget about Sodom and Gomorrah and forever
"write them off." And yet, the Lord holds forth the promise of the
eventual restoration of such an infamous city-state as Sodom! Not
only that, but His engagement to do this is linked up to His promise to
restore the people of JUDAH!
Speaking to backslidden Jerusalem as to a harlot, God declares to her in
His great mercy, "As I live, saith the Lord God, Sodom thy sister
hath not done, she or her daughters, as thou hast done, and thy
daughters. Behold, this was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom,
pride, fullness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and
in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and
needy. And they were haughty, and committed abomination before me:
therefore I took them away as I saw good. Neither hath
Samaria committed half of thy sins; but thou didst multiply thy
abominations more than they, and hast justified thy sisters in all thine
abominations which thou hast done. When I shall
bring again their captivity, the captivity of Sodom and
her daughters, and the captivity of Samaria and her daughters, THEN WILL
I BRING AGAIN THE CAPTIVITY OF THY CAPTIVES IN THE MIDST OF THEM.
When thy sisters, SODOM and her daughters (including Gomorrah)…SHALL
RETURN TO THEIR FORMER ESTATE, then thou and thy daughters
shall return to your former estate. For thus saith the Lord God: I
will deal with thee as thou hast done…nevertheless I will remember my
covenant with thee in the days of thy youth, and I will establish unto
thee an everlasting covenant. Then thou shalt remember thy ways,
and be ashamed. WHEN THOU SHALT RECEIVE THY SISTERS, thine elder
(Sodom) and thy younger (Samaria)…I will establish my covenant with
thee; and thou shalt know that I am the Lord" (Eze. 16:48-62).
All of this will be much easier to understand when you remember that
Sodom, Jerusalem, and Samaria are only a short distance from one
another. They were sister cities. This promised
restoration of all three — has this wonderful thing been accomplished?
History shouts aloud that it has not — not yet! But fear not, dear
ones, for the same God of faithfulness and omnipotence who declared,
"And so ALL ISRAEL shall be saved," also promises, "SODOM
shall return to her former estate." Not their former
estate of wickedness, certainly, for then the long ages of judgment
would prove fruitless. Jesus saw this coming restoration of Sodom
when He announced to the citizens of Capernaum, "And thou, Capernaum,
which art exalted unto heaven, shall be brought down to hell: for
if the mighty works that have been done in thee, had been done in Sodom,
IT WOULD HAVE REMAINED UNTO THIS DAY. But I say unto you, that it
shall be more tolerable (favorable) for the land of Sodom
in the day of judgment, than for thee" (Mat. 11:23-24).
When these two cities rise up in the day of judgment, under the ministry
of the manifest sons of God, it will be far easier to bring the people
of Sodom into obedience to the kingdom of Christ than the people of
Capernaum. According to the estimation of Christ, although the
people of Sodom were extremely vile and wicked, yet, if the mighty works
which were done in Capernaum had been done in Sodom THEY WOULD HAVE
REPENTED. Seeing that such is the case, if God should fail to
manifest His sons and show such wonderful works to the people of Sodom,
He would be most unfair and altogether unjust!
Capernaum, therefore, will have to be dealt with much more severely!
These verses can have no other meaning. And if the judgment is the
same for the people of both of these cities — eternal damnation in
hell-fire — then Christ’s promise that it will be "more tolerable" for
the people of Sodom in the day when God’s judgments are made manifest is
absolutely meaningless. How unscriptural and ridiculous are the
ignorant traditions of men!
A. P. Adams has written a masterful monograph on the restoration of
Sodom and I here share a portion of his scholarly wisdom. "We need
not dwell upon the history of the destruction of Sodom, all are familiar
with it, or may very easily make themselves so. We know that the
city was so wicked that ten righteous persons could not be found within
its walls and God destroyed them all by ‘a horrible tempest’ of ‘fire
and brimstone’ (Ps. 11:6). ‘Terrible!’ you exclaim, ‘what
extraordinary sinners they must have been to have deserved such a
fearful visitation as this!’ Why, no, they were not sinners
above all men (Lk. 13:4); in fact they were very ordinary sinners,
not near as bad as many cities that are referred to in the Bible.
Their sins were just the ordinary transgressions of all populous and
wealthy cities, ancient and modern. What were they? ‘Behold,
this was the iniquity of Sodom; pride, fullness of bread, and abundance
of idleness was in her, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor
and needy; and they were haughty, and committed abomination’ (Eze.
16:49-50). These are not extraordinary, unusual sins. What
city ever existed, or does now exist, that could not be truthfully
charged with every one of the sins enumerated above? Many a city
has been far worse than this! The above language would not begin
to describe the ‘iniquity’ of Paris, London, or New York. But more
surprising still, Sodom did not begin to be so bad as the so-called
‘holy city of David,’ proud and magnificent Jerusalem! The sin of
Sodom was ‘a very little thing’ in comparison with the city of
Jerusalem (Eze. 16:47). Think of it! We know that the sin of
Sodom was ‘very grievous’ (Gen. 18:20). What then must have been
the sin of highly favored Jerusalem, if in comparison therewith the sin
of Sodom was ‘a very little thing?'
"Suppose we take the orthodox view of this case and see how well it will
stand investigation. The case of Sodom is clear-cut and
unequivocal. We know that the Sodomites were exceedingly
wicked sinners (Gen. 13:3). We know that when they were destroyed
there were no righteous persons among them. We know that
they perished in their sins, and that none of them escaped, all
were destroyed (Lk. 17:29). Hence it is positive that these wicked
sinners have all gone to an endless hell, if the orthodox
view is correct. Is such a view in harmony with the Bible teaching
in regard to Sodom? As we have already noticed, the sin of Sodom
was comparatively ‘a very little thing.’ If the doom of Sodom for
this comparatively ‘very little’ sin is endless torment
WHAT OUGHT TO BE THE DOOM OF JERUSALEM? What ought to be the doom of
Capernaum, and of the cities that reject the Gospel? for they also are
worse than Sodom (Mat. 10:14; 11:23-24). Sodom did not sin
against light; they knew nothing of the true God or of Jesus Christ the
Saviour. I know that Lot was among them, a righteous man, but we
have every reason to believe that he was more interested in his worldly
prosperity than in the moral welfare of those around him.
"At any rate, rejection of the truth is not mentioned in the enumeration
of the sins of Sodom. Would their guilt have been any greater, if
they had committed that sin? Certainly it would, for it is
on that very account that other cities are spoken of as worse than
Sodom. This was the very reason why Jerusalem was worse — because
it sinned against great light; this was the very reason why Capernaum
was worse; and this was the very reason given by Jesus Christ Himself
why it should be ‘more tolerable for Sodom in the day of judgment’
than for those cities that rejected the Truth. How does the
idea of its being ‘more tolerable’ for one than for another in the
future process of judgment, comport with the idea of the same endless
torment for all? Not at all! It is arrogant nonsense to talk
about more or less tolerable endless torment, and anyone
ought to be ashamed to believe or advocate any such absurdity.
"But graver still is the question — how can we vindicate the justice of
God in His dealing with Sodom if the orthodox view is correct?
Jesus plainly tells us that if Sodom had had the light and advantages
that other cities had, IT WOULD HAVE REPENTED; that light was withheld
through no fault of their’s, and they perished in their sins and are
lost. Why did they not have that light? Why did not Sodom
have as good a chance for salvation as any other class of human beings?
That they did not, Christ plainly declares, and now their doom is
sealed and they are hopelessly lost, according to the popular view, when
if they had had as good an opportunity as others they would have been
saved! You cannot reconcile this case with justice and equity on
the ground of prevailing theology. ‘I will bring again their
captivity, the captivity of SODOM,’ says the Lord. ‘Thy
sister SODOM and her daughters shall return to their
former estate.’ What does the personal, plural pronoun their
refer to? the city or the people? The people,
of course! So all through this beautiful prophecy, the most
cursory reading will show that by the term Sodom is meant
in every case the inhabitants of that ancient city. The pronouns ‘they,’
‘their,’ and ‘them’ cannot refer to the city or to
the land specifically, but to the people — the
inhabitants of Sodom!" — end quote.
Another striking example of God’s dealings with nations and His future
plans for them is found in the ancient nation of Assyria. It was
once one of the six great empires that have ruled the civilized world,
preceding Babylon. In Zephaniah 2:13-15 the Lord pronounced His
judgment against Assyria, saying, "And He will stretch out His hand
against the north, and destroy Assyria; and He will make
Nineveh (the capital of Assyria) a desolation, and dry
like a wilderness. This is the rejoicing city that dwelt
carelessly, that said in her heart, I am, and there is none beside
me: how is she become a desolation, a place for beasts to lie down in!
every one that passeth by her shall hiss, and wag his hand."
Today, thousands of years later, there are still only some dirt mounds
covering the site of Nineveh, nor does the kingdom of Assyria exist any
more at all! How thoroughly does God execute His word!
But now, hear this! "And the Lord shall be known to Egypt, and the
Egyptians shall know the Lord in that day…yea, they shall vow a vow unto
the Lord, and perform it. And the Lord shall smite Egypt: He shall
smite it and heal it: and they shall return even to the Lord. In
that day there shall be an highway OUT OF EGYPT TO ASSYRIA, and the
ASSYRIAN shall come into Egypt, and the Egyptian into Assyria, and the
Egyptians shall serve with the Assyrians. In that day shall ISRAEL
be the third with EGYPT and with ASSYRIA, even a blessing in the midst
of the land: whom the Lord of hosts shall bless, saying, BLESSED BE
EGYPT MY PEOPLE, AND ASSYRIA THE WORK OF MY HANDS, AND ISRAEL MINE
INHERITANCE." To say that there will not be a restoration of the
nation of Assyria and that God will not save that nation would be a
blatant repudiation of the Word of God. And notice, too, Egypt
today is a Moslem nation and the State of Israel is gathered in
unbelief, a secular State; but according to the above prophecy
Egypt also shall come to know the Lord and SERVE HIM AS A NATION ALONG
WITH ISRAEL AND ASSYRIA. What anticipation this stirs in our
Now hear the words of the Lord against two other peoples, Moab and
Ammon. "Therefore as I live, saith the Lord of hosts, the God of
Israel, surely Moab shall be as Sodom, and the children of
Ammon as Gomorrah, even the breeding of nettles and salt
pits, and a perpetual desolation" (Zeph. 2:9). This judgment would
seem to be final, and would be if the judgment of Sodom
is forever sealed in eternal punishment — but it is only
final until the judgment is completed! For God says
of Moab in Jeremiah 48:47, "YET will I bring the captivity of Moab
in the latter days…" Again, in Jeremiah 49:6 the Lord
promises concerning Ammon, "And afterward I will bring
again the captivity of the children of Ammon, saith the Lord." If
one reads only a portion of God’s words, the facts are too few to
calculate rightly the curve of God’s purposes. May the spirit of
wisdom and revelation from God enable us to see beyond the weeping of
the night that we may behold the JOY THAT COMETH IN THE MORNING!
When every judgment shall have fulfilled its purpose, the judgments will
end, and ALL NATIONS shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of
the Lord, as the waters cover the sea. "And He will destroy in
this mountain (the kingdom of God) the face of the covering cast over
all people, and the veil (of ignorance and blindness) that is spread
over all nations. And He will swallow up death in victory;
and the Lord shall wipe away tears from off all faces. And
it shall be said in that day, Lo, this is our God; we have waited for
Him, and He will save us: this is the Lord; we have waited for Him, we
will be glad and rejoice in HIS SALVATION" (Isa. 25:7-9).
Lord is King! Lift up your voice,
O earth; and all ye heavens rejoice:
From world to world the joy shall ring,
The Lord Omnipotent is King!
The Lord is King! Who then shall dare
Resist His will, distrust His care,
Or murmur at His wise decrees,
Or doubt His royal promises?
The Lord is King! Child of the dust,
The Judge of all the earth is just;
Holy and true are all His ways:
Let every creature speak His praise.
One Lord, one empire, all secures;
He reigns, and life and death are yours:
Through earth and heaven one song shall ring,
The Lord Omnipotent is King!
"Great and marvelous are Thy works, Lord God Almighty: just and true are
Thy ways, thou King of saints. Who shall not fear Thee, O Lord,
and glorify Thy name? for Thou only art holy: for all nations shall
come and worship before Thee; for Thy judgments are made manifest"
Nothing is more evident in the Word of God than the fact that God has a
great and wonderful plan which He is working out among the nations of
earth. Many saints recognize that God has a predestined purpose
for each of His people, an appointed end for Israel, a glorious purpose
for the Church, and a foreordained plan for the overcoming sons of God.
We must also understand that the Lord has a determined plan and purpose
for ALL NATIONS. God is actively dealing with NATIONS!
From the first dawn of human history God has had the formation,
development, and destiny of nations in mind and purpose. The
present nations of earth had their origins in the early days following
the Great Flood. In Genesis chapter ten is found a most remarkable
and comprehensive list of the descendants of Noah who became the heads
of the families and tribes which subsequently developed into
nations. Even so-called higher critics have often admitted that
the tenth chapter of Genesis is a remarkably accurate historical
document. There is no comparable catalog of ancient nations
available from any other source. It is unparalleled in its
antiquity and comprehensiveness. You would do well to read the
The descendants of Noah migrated over the whole face of the earth,
forming tribe after tribe, city after city, and nation after nation.
Let all men know that it is the Almighty God who is the designer and
architect of all the nations in the world! The time periods and
localities in which nations flourish have all be pre-arranged by the
will of Him who "worketh all things after the counsel of His own
will" (Eph. 1:11). The truth of this cannot be made any plainer
than it is by Moses when he declares, "When the most High divided
the nations their inheritance, when He separated the sons
of Adam, He set the bounds of the people according to the number
of the children of Israel" (Deut. 32:8). Paul refers to this very
passage when he says, "And hath made of one blood all nations
of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath
determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of
their habitation; that they should seek the Lord" (Acts
17:26-27). How plain it is that it was GOD who, from that long-ago
beginning, set the bounds of habitation or the national boundaries of
all nations. These boundaries were established in
relation to the vast multitude of Israel peoples and with a view to
their being able to seek after the Lord.
Yes, God set the bounds of habitation for all nations and planted
Israel of old at the crossroads, to the end that ALL NATIONS should
seek after the Lord. Out of Israel came the Christ; out of
Christ has come the church, His bride (Eph. 5:21-33); out of the church
comes the manchild, the overcoming sons of God who are destined to reign
with Christ and deliver the whole creation that it might be fulfilled
which God promised father Abraham: "And in thy seed shall ALL THE
NATIONS OF THE EARTH BE BLESSED" (Gen. 22:18). ALL NATIONS
shall be blessed! What a prospect! From the very
beginning God not only designed the nations of men that dwell upon the
earth; He also planned and purposed to bless them — each and
every one of them! This signifies not merely the blessing of
Israel, nor the blessing of the church, nor the blessing of the saints
of God within the nations; it is THE NATIONS THEMSELVES that must come
under the gracious hand of God in blessing and quickening. Oh, the
wonder of it!
The sweet singer of Israel sang of this blessed hope in the spirit of
prophecy: "God be merciful unto us, and bless us; and cause His face to
shine upon us; that Thy way may be known upon earth, Thy saving health
among ALL NATIONS. Let the people praise Thee, O God; let ALL the
people praise Thee! O let THE NATIONS be glad and sing for joy:
for Thou shalt JUDGE THE PEOPLE righteously, and GOVERN THE NATIONS upon
earth…yea, ALL KINGS shall fall down before Him: ALL NATIONS SHALL
SERVE HIM" (Ps. 67:1-4; 72:11). What a word! It is obvious
that all nations do not today serve the Lord, neither do all kings
(rulers) fall down before Him. China does not serve the Lord,
neither do its rulers acknowledge Him. Iran does not serve the
Lord. Japan does not serve the Lord. Great numbers of
nations do not today serve the Lord, and few of their rulers fall down
before Him. But the day is surely coming when all nations shall be
joined to the Lord and fulfill their obligations to Him as their
Maker and Saviour. If that day never comes, then the Bible will
have to be relegated to the scrapheap of ancestral errors. But the
promise is sure: "Arise, O God, judge the earth: for Thou shalt
INHERIT ALL NATIONS, ALL NATIONS whom Thou has made shall come
and worship before Thee, O Lord; and shall glorify Thy name. For
Thou art great, and doest wondrous things" (Ps. 82:8; 86:9-10).
Many precious "fragments" reveal God’s ultimate purpose for mankind,
when "ALL the ends of the world shall remember and turn unto the Lord,
and ALL KINDREDS OF THE NATIONS shall worship before Thee, for the
kingdom is the Lord’s and HE is the governor among the nations" (Ps.
22:27-28). For further confirmation of God’s gracious intention toward
the nations let us consider the second Psalm. In this wonderful
prophecy the Father is addressing the Son, saying, "Ask of me, and
I WILL GIVE THEE THE NATIONS FOR THINE INHERITANCE, and the uttermost
parts of the earth for Thy possession" (Ps. 2:8). Surely the will
and plan of God is revealed in this most gracious request, and
surely this was the purpose for which Jesus came and was sent.
"The Father sent His Son to be the Saviour of THE WORLD" (I
Jn. 4:14). With this divine plan in view, well may David
triumphantly sing, "O let THE NATIONS be glad and sing for joy, for Thou
shalt judge the people righteously, and govern the nations
upon earth…God shall bless us, and ALL the ends of the earth shall fear
(reverence) HIM" (Ps. 67:4-7). "ALL NATIONS shall call Him
blessed…and blessed be His glorious name forever, and let THE WHOLE
EARTH be filled with His glory. Amen and Amen" (Ps. 72:17-19).
And this, precious friend of mine, is the message of the song of Moses
and the Lamb! All the holy sons of God sing that song, for it is
the song of redemption for all men and every nation. Only
the overcomers stand upon the glassy sea intoning this hymn of
salvation for all! Only the enlightened elect of the
Lord, in whose hearts have been birthed the beautiful truths of the
reconciliation of all and the triumph of the kingdom of God, are able to
learn that song and sing that song! Out of all the
inhabitants of the earth, only those who have received the
call to sonship, leaving the precincts of religious Babylon, and
coming under the purifying fires of God mingled in the crystal sea
have been given voice to intone the beautiful strains of the song of
Moses and the Lamb! The multitudes in the church systems of
man have not and can not at this time learn this song, because of
their unbelief. Oh, ye blessed sons of God, lift it up on high,
let the refrain ring throughout the unbounded heavens and reverberate
unto the extremities of earth — for the time is at hand!