These are literal, created beings connected with the throne room of heaven (Revelation 4:6). They have eyes before and behind to see all things clearly and accurately (Revelation 4:6). By comparing the characteristics of these living creatures with Isaiah 6:1-3, we see that they are undoubtedly seraphim angels of God created to praise and exalt the Lord. These beings are not monstrosities. Instead, they are a picture of beauty. This is a portrait set before us . . . angels in all their magnificence praising the Lord.
Archives: Question of the Week
Luke 16:19-31 gives an accurate testimony to the fact that existence after death is a very conscious one. This fundamental truth is taught in many other places in the Word of God. II Corinthians 5, written by the Apostle Paul under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, is also very helpful. Paul declares emphatically that his absence from his body means his presence with the Lord (vs. 8). There does not seem to be any indication whatsoever that he is looking forward to a cessation of consciousness or an intermediate period between death and the time of being with the Lord. In Philippians 1:23-24, the Apostle Paul again emphasized this same truth. He points out two distinct existences. There is no indication of an intermediate state or a “sleeping.”
Revelation 6:9-12 testifies to the fact that those who have died and gone before are in a conscious presence with the Lord. We must always be careful to remember the words of Jesus to the thief who was crucified with Him. John 19:31-37 makes it abundantly clear that this thief died at the same approximate time as Christ. In Luke 23:43, we have the
authoritative words of Christ that give a promise of hope to a dying man that upon his death he would be taken into the conscious joy of the Lord's presence.
In I Thessalonians 4:14 Christ brings those who sleep or the spirits of the dead with him, to recover their bodies. The spirit of the believer left the body at death to be with Christ and at the Rapture returns for ones covering. This is necessary if the redeemed are to rule and reign with Christ (Revelation 20:4; 22:5). In order to do so, one must have a body because a spirit alone cannot be seen.
The four horsemen of Revelation 6 are:
1. The white horse whose rider is Antichrist (vs.2), counterfeits the return of Christ and produces a fraudulent peace pact (Revelation 19:11).
2. The red horse (vs. 4) produces wars and rumors of wars. Perhaps Russia (red) might have a part here.
3. The black horse (vs. 5) produces famine and inflation as the 666 program becomes activated.
4. The pale horse (vs. 8), the deadliest, produces death and disease with hell following him.
Countless horses will be utilized by the armies of Armageddon as the blood rises to their bridles (Revelation 14:20), and Christ himself will return, mounted on a white horse, followed by His armies also riding white horses (Revelation 19:11-14).
Many people have doubts about whether or not they are saved. I would suggest they make certain. The question is “what must I do to be saved?” Let me tell you.
You must know that you are a sinner. The Bible says: “There is none righteous, no not one” (Romans 3:10). “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
You must know that God loves you and has sent His Son, Jesus Christ, to die for you. “But God commendeth (demonstrated or showed) his love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8). Born of the virgin, Jesus Christ lived a perfect life and died on the cross (shedding His blood) to pay for your sins. Here is the Gospel: “how that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures; he was buried, and rose again the third day according to the scriptures” (I Corinthians 15:3,4).
You must know how to receive His salvation by faith. God saves people through faith and faith alone. “For by grace are ye saved through faith” (Ephesians 2:8). There is no other way to be right with God. “Therefore being justified (made right with God) by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ” (Romans 5:1). To take Christ by faith is to turn from your sin (repent) and place all your trust (confidence, belief) in Jesus Christ as your personal Saviour and Lord. “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved” (Acts 16:13).
Just as one is born into his physical family, one must be born into God's family. In John 3:7 Jesus said: “Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.” Since you are not sure of your salvation, I would suggest that if you truly believe in your heart the above truth from God's Word, you should ask the Lord Jesus to forgive you of your sin and to come into your life today as your Lord and Saviour. In this way you will know for certain that you are saved because the day that you do this will be your spiritual birthday. You can always look back on that day as the day when you were born again.
Here is a prayer to guide you: “Dear Lord Jesus, I come to you just as I am, a sinner. I turn from my sin and unbelief to you. I now take you by faith as my only Saviour and Lord. I trust you to save me and guide me in the Christian life. In Your Name, Amen.”
Think quietly now about the words you have spoken. Are they an expression of the faith in your heart? Repeating a prayer does not save. “With the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation” (Romans 10:10). If you have received the Lord Jesus Christ as your personal Saviour, be assured that He has received you. “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved” (Romans 10:13). “These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life” (I John 5:13).
Matthew 24:36 says: But that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only. No one should make a prediction as to the exact time of the Lords coming. Many Bible scholars, Dr. Van Impe included, will point to verse 33 of the same chapter, which states that, When ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors. These verses in Matthew 24 refer to the Revelation of Christ 7 years after the Rapture of the Church. Since we see the signs fulfilled which precede His return at the Revelation, we know the Rapture must be imminent. However, no man can know the exact day or hour though we certainly know the time is near. Jesus could return today! Every sign that points to the Lords return has been fulfilled.
When Jesus Christ returns for His own, He will take all of those who have accepted Him as their Saviour to heaven with Him. This will trigger the Tribulation hours beginning on earth. During this period, the Antichrist will require that people take the mark of the beast or his number, 666. They will not be able to buy or sell without this number. This is not in effect now and will not be for those that know Christ as personal Saviour. This is so because the believer is raptured in Revelation 4:1, then the Antichrist comes to power Revelation 6:1,2 and then midway through the Tribulation period begins the usage of his 666 identification system. During the Tribulation, the Antichrist will also have a false prophet who will be the religious leader of that period. He will be in charge of the World Church, which will be against Christ.
Condemnation, guilt and often bouts of depression are the consequences of sin. However, no matter the depth of our sins God still forgives.
It is important to realize that even after we become new creatures in Christ we still must face up to the consequences and results of our past sins. In doing so we can rejoice that not only are we forgiven and cleansed (I John 1:9) but we also are given the promise of God's strength, peace and provision as we depend on Him.