The Three Angels' Messages Lesson 01: The First Angel's Message
When you read through the book of Revelation, it is very easy to get caught up in the imagery of beasts and plagues. However, Revelation is ultimately about Jesus. Did you know that Jesus has a special message for His people in the last days before the second coming?
Let's turn to Revelation 14:6-7.
Then I saw another angel flying in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach to those who dwell on the earth--to every nation, tribe, tongue, and people--saying with a loud voice, "Fear God and give glory to Him, for the hour of His judgment has come; and worship Him who made heaven and earth, the sea and springs of water."
The first angel has a global message, which has four parts:
- Fear God
- Give Him glory
- For the hour of His judgment has come
- Worship Him
What does it mean to fear God? Let's turn to 1 John 4:18.
- According to this verse, is there fear in love?
- Answer (highlight to read): No
1 John 4:18 tells us what the fear of God is not. Perfect love casts out fear. God has perfect love, for He is love (1 John 4:8). We should not be afraid of God.
Let's turn to Proverbs 9:10 and Psalms 111:10.
- According to these verses, what is the fear of the Lord?
- Answer: The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.
Perhaps there is something fundamental about the fear of God. Both these Bible verses say that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. Note that Psalms 111:10 has a parallel thought linking understanding with doing God’s commandments.
Let's turn to Jeremiah 32:40 and read it together:
“And I will make an everlasting covenant with them, that I will not turn away from doing them good; but I will put My fear in their hearts so that they will not depart from Me."
This passage is a promise. When we think of the gospel, we think of grace and what God can do for us. This passage remind us of the new covenant which is also mentioned in Jeremiah 31:31-34.
God will put His fear into our hearts. What is God’s fear? It can probably be best understood when contrasted with the fear of man.
Read John 7:13 – “However, no one spoke openly of Him for fear of the Jews.” Note that the people did not want to speak of Jesus aloud because there were afraid of man, in this case, the Jews. John 9:18-22 tells the story of a blind man who was healed. The man’s parents did not want to testify to his healing because they were afraid of being expelled from the synagogue. Again...they were afraid of man.
But being afraid is a human fear. The fear of God is not the same as being afraid. The fear of God has to do with obedience, not out of fear, but out of awe. When we are in awe of God’s power and God’s presence in our lives, that is the “fear” of God. So when God puts His fear into our hearts we become in awe of Him and we obey Him because we trust Him.
Some examples of God-fearing men were Abel, Noah, Abraham, Daniel and his three friends. They all followed God, even if that meant they would be in conflict with other men. They all followed God, not because they were afraid of Him, but because they loved Him.
When God put His fear into our hearts, our lives change. Whatever you do, do it to the glory of God. God wants us to work in a way that we can bring blessings to others, so that we can bring glory to God.
The first part of the Angel’s message is to fear God. When God puts His fear in our hearts, the other three parts come naturally. We will naturally give God glory, we know that the hour of His judgement has come and we will naturally worship him. Worshiping God comes as easily as breathing when we fear Him.
The first angel’s message is a message of hope. Jesus is coming again! This is good news! The good news of Jesus’ second coming is upon us. Rejoice!
Then I saw another angel flying in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach to those who dwell on the earth--to every nation, tribe, tongue, and people--saying with a loud voice, "Fear God and give glory to Him, for the hour of His judgment has come; and worship Him who made heaven and earth, the sea and springs of water.”