"THE MYSTERY OF GOD"
Intro. Tonight we will go into detail as to why we believe that this mighty angel is none other that Jesus Christ, coming with the scroll opened which is the title deed to earth. He takes an oath as He announces that there will no longer be a delay, but in the sounding of the seventh trumpet the mysteries of God shall have been completed.
I. THERE ARE MANY MYSTERIES OF GOD.
A. God said to the prophet Isaiah:
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD.
For [as] the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.
1. This is why the ways of God often seem as a mystery to us.
2. This is that great gulf between the finite and the infinite.
3. We are always judging and acting from our limited knowledge.
a. We make a decision and hope we are right.
b. How many wrong decisions we made in the past, because we did not have all the facts, or we didn't realize how they would turn out.
c. God never has to say oops.
4. Many times we question as to why God has allowed certain things to happen in our lives. It is a mystery to us, it looks to us like God made a mistake.
a. That is only because we do not see the whole picture.
b. As time goes by and the full picture begins to come into focus, we see the wisdom of God in doing and allowing the things that He has.
c. When the full story is complete, no one has been able to say, "See God, I told You that You were wrong."
B. There is the mystery as to why God allows the wicked to prosper.
1. Job said,
Why do the wicked live, become old, yea, are mighty in power?
Their children are established in their sight with them, and their offspring before their eyes.
Their houses [are] safe from fear, neither [is] the rod of God upon them.
Their bull gendereth, and faileth not; their cow calveth, and casteth not her calf.
They send forth their little ones like a flock, and their children dance.
They take the timbrel and harp, and rejoice at the sound of the organ.
They spend their days in wealth, and in a moment go down to the grave.
Therefore they say unto God, Depart from us; for we desire not the knowledge of thy ways.
What [is] the Almighty, that we should serve him? and what profit should we have, if we pray unto him?
2. This mystery almost destroyed Asaph the chief musician of David's day.
I was foolish for I was envious when I saw the prosperity of the wicked. I thought there are no struggles when they die, but their strength is firm till the day they die.
They [are] not in trouble [as other] men; neither are they plagued like [other] men.
Therefore pride compasseth them about as a chain; violence covers them [as] a garment.
Their eyes bulge out with fatness: they have more than heart could wish.
They are corrupt, and speak wickedly [concerning] oppression: they speak loftily.
They set their mouth against the heavens, and their tongue walketh through the earth.
Yet the people follow after them and waters of a full [cup] are wrung out to them.
And they say, How doth God know? and is there knowledge in the most High?
Behold, these [are] the ungodly, who prosper in the world; they increase [in] riches. When I sought to understand this it was too painful for me.
3. David said, "Do not fret over evil doers who bring wicked devices to pass."
4. Jeremiah said: I know that you are righteous Lord, but I would like to talk with you about a problem I have with your judgments. Why do you allow the wicked to prosper? Why are they happy that deal very treacherously?
5. Paul spoke to Timothy of the mystery of iniquity.
a. Why does God allow Satan to deceive men?
b. Why does God allow evil to exist?
c. Why does God allow us to be tempted?
C. Paul speaks of the mystery of the blindness of Israel to Jesus as their Messiah.
1. When it is so plain and clear that He fulfilled the prophecies concerning the Messiah, why are they so blind?
2. When they have had the scriptures and known the scriptures, why don't they believe in Him?
D. The mystery of why men so often hate God.
1. They are not just neutral, but they have an unreasonable hatred of God.
2. They can talk rationally with you on almost every subject, but the subject of Jesus Christ comes up, they become suddenly totally irrational.
E. The mystery referred to in our text, is the mystery of the kingdom of God that is going to be set up on the earth.
1. The time of His coming to set up the kingdom is a mystery.
a. Jesus said that no man knew the day or the hour.
b. He told us to pray for His kingdom to come and for the day when His will, will be done here on earth, even as it is in heaven.
c. In the context, the time has come for Him to lay claim to the earth, which He redeemed by His blood. The angel proclaims there will be no more delay. The time has come to establish the kingdom of God on the earth.
d. Why has He waited almost 2,000 years, so far, before He destroys those who destroyed the earth?
2. The mystery of the patience of God in waiting so long to set up the kingdom. Though in the scriptures there are indications that it would be a long time.
a. Peter said that it would be so long that men would begin to scoff at the very idea that Jesus was coming again. They would begin to say, "Where is the promise of His coming? Things are and will continue to go on as they have from the beginning." Peter continued, "God is not slack concerning His promise, but is faithful, and a day is as a thousand years to the Lord, and a thousand years as a day."
b. Jesus spoke a parable of the wicked servant that said, "My Lord delays His coming."
c. Jesus gave the parable of the 10 virgins waiting for the coming. They all slumbered and slept.
d. Generations have passed since the Lord promised to return, centuries have passed, even millenniums have gone by and we still wait for His return.
e. Many dates have been set by men who thought they had solved the mystery, those dates have passed and the Lord did not return.
f. But not the proclamation goes forth, there shall be no more delay, but in the days of the sounding of the seventh trumpet, the mystery will be completed.
g. Taking a sneak preview into chapter 11 we see then the proclamation made when the seventh trumpet sounds, "The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign, forever and forever, amen."
h. This will be the fulfillment of Psalm 2
when the Father shall set His King on the holy hill of Zion, and shall make the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou [art] my Son; this day have I begotten thee. Ask of me, and I shall give [thee] the heathen [for] thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth [for] thy possession. Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron; thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potter's vessel.
3. The glories of the Kingdom are a mystery.
a. Paul said, "Eye has not see, nor the ear heard, the things that God has prepared for them that love Him."
b. The mystery of our resurrection bodies. What will they look like? What will they be like? Paul said that some people were asking, "How are the dead raised, and what kind of body do they have?"
c. Different writers in the Bible have given to us limited insights, but it is so far above and beyond anything that you could even imagine, that Paul after a visit in heaven declared that the things he heard were so glorious that it would be a crime to even attempt to describe them with words.
d. It is finally over, the long reign of Satan over the earth his kingdom of death and darkness has been banished. We shall now see the earth as God had intended it to be when He first created man. The earth will be restored to its Edenic glory. No more vast uninhabitable regions, for the deserts will blossom as a rose garden, and they shall beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruninghooks, and they shall study war no more. No more sorrow, no more pain, for God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes. For the former things are passed away.