Peeling the Onion: Revelation 15:1-7

Recall your 7 angels, 7 bowls, with 7 plagues. You imagined them, construed them in your mind, when we entered this layer weeks ago – with the 7 angels, lamps, trumpets, eh?

The plot and the action on your celestial stage may be focused in a foreground, but the background is familiar: throne, 3 beasts, altar, thrones...The 4 beasts give bowls of wrath to the angels bearing plagues the replay of Exodus is read. Do you flinch in fear – Or cry ‘let my people go’?

In the big picture, the God of mercy and grace is revealed ultimately as God of justice. What will the consequences be and for whom? What side of the fence are you on and who is there with you?

7 Angels Get 7 Bowls

1 And I saw in heaven another sign, great and wonderful: seven angels were bringing the seven plagues that are the last of all, because they exhaust the anger of God.

2 I seemed to be looking at a sea of crystal suffused with fire, and standing by the lake of glass, those who had fought against the beast and won, and against his statue and the number which is his name. They all had harps from God,

3 and they were singing the hymn of Moses, the servant of God, and the hymn of the Lamb: How great and wonderful are all your works, Lord God Almighty; upright and true are all your ways, King of nations.

4 Who does not revere and glorify your name, O Lord? For you alone are holy, and all nations will come and adore you for the many acts of saving justice you have shown.

5 After this, in my vision, the sanctuary, the tent of the Testimony, opened in heaven,

6 and out came the seven angels with the seven plagues, wearing pure white linen, fastened round their waists with belts of gold.

7 One of the four living creatures gave the seven angels seven golden bowls filled with the anger of God who lives for ever and ever.

7 Angels, Chorus, 7 Plagues, 7 Bowls

Then I saw another portent in heaven, great and amazing: seven angels with seven plagues, which are the last, for with them the wrath of God is ended.

2 And I saw what appeared to be a sea of glass mixed with fire, and those who had conquered the beast and its image and the number of its name standing beside the sea of glass with harps of God in their hands .

3And they sing the song of Moses, the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb: ‘Great and amazing are your deeds, Lord God the Almighty! Just and true are your ways, King of the nations!

4 Lord, who will not fear and glorify your name? For you alone are holy. All nations will come and worship before you, for your judgements have been revealed.’

5 After this I looked, and the temple of the tent of witness in heaven was opened,

6and out of the temple came the seven angels with the seven plagues, robed in pure bright linen, with golden sashes across their chests.

7Then one of the four living creatures gave the seven angels seven golden bowls full of the wrath of God, who lives for ever and ever;

8and the temple was filled with smoke from the glory of God and from his power, and no one could enter the temple until the seven plagues of the seven angels were ended.