The Exodus Song of Moses and Jesus (Revelation 15)

The Exodus Song of Moses and Jesus
(Revelation 15)

 


Introduction:

In the passage before us today, we have a wonderful picture of the progress of redemption. In the OT God’s people were delivered from their bondage in Egypt through the power of God. If you remember some of the events, it will help you to understand what John is telling us here in Revelation 15.

The plagues were God’s means to destroy the Land of Egypt. As he send one after the other the land was destroyed. After God was finished with judgment there wasn’t much left. His wrath was poured out on the Egyptians by way of divine plagues.

What were the plagues? What was their purpose? If we can get a true understanding then it will help us see what is going on here in John’s vision.

In the prologue to the plague section in the Book of Exodus, God calls the plagues His signs and wonders (7:3). To begin with, this does not mean that they were to be seen as miracles to insight interest and amazement but that they were to have a deeper significance and meaning. The plagues have a strange way of pointing past themselves to something greater. They were also more than just punishment because they were to point even past punishment to judgment. Then there was an element of knowledge that accompanied the plagues.

Here’s what I mean…The plagues were to give the one experiencing them knowledge of his (this case Pharaoh) frailty at the hand of Almighty God. They warned him over and over that judgment was coming. Heed the warning of the plague and you will not experience more, fail to listen and you will ultimately suffer eternal judgment. We know that Pharaoh did not listen and suffered ultimate destruction.

The plagues also served as a warning not only to the other nations (Joshua 2:11) but also to future generations of Israelites (Exodus 10:2). God is not to be taken lightly. His commands are to be obeyed.

All throughout the time of the plagues, Moses had one plea that he made to Pharaoh, God says, let My people go so that they can worship Me

Signs and wonders reveal God’s character, power, and the fact that there are none like Him. They served as a means for God’s people to escape from Egypt and also served to judge those in Egypt.

Another important part of the Exodus account is the event that took place as the Red Sea.

Exodus 14:13–18 (ESV)

13 And Moses said to the people, “Fear not, stand firm, and see the salvation of the Lord, which he will work for you today. For the Egyptians whom you see today, you shall never see again. 14 The Lord will fight for you, and you have only to be silent.”

15 The Lord said to Moses, “Why do you cry to me? Tell the people of Israel to go forward. 16 Lift up your staff, and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it, that the people of Israel may go through the sea on dry ground. 17 And I will harden the hearts of the Egyptians so that they shall go in after them, and I will get glory over Pharaoh and all his host, his chariots, and his horsemen. 18 And the Egyptians shall know that I am the Lord, when I have gotten glory over Pharaoh, his chariots, and his horsemen.”

Remember from last time that after the Egyptians were destroyed and the Hebrews saved on the other side, Moses sings the song of victory and trust in God. Last time I read the song of Moses (Exodus 15).

As we read Revelation 15 we should do so with Exodus 15 in mind.

 

Text

Revelation 15:1–8 (ESV)

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

And I saw what appeared to be a sea of glass mingled with fire—and also 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. And they sing the song of Moses, the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying,

       “Great and amazing are your deeds,

O Lord God the Almighty!

       Just and true are your ways,

O King of the nations!

   Who will not fear, O Lord,

and glorify your name?

       For you alone are holy.

All nations will come

and worship you,

       for your righteous acts have been revealed.”

After this I looked, and the sanctuary of the tent of witness in heaven was opened, and out of the sanctuary came the seven angels with the seven plagues, clothed in pure, bright linen, with golden sashes around their chests. And one of the four living creatures gave to the seven angels seven golden bowls full of the wrath of God who lives forever and ever, and the sanctuary was filled with smoke from the glory of God and from his power, and no one could enter the sanctuary until the seven plagues of the seven angels were finished.

 

 

Primary Truth Taught

 

The Church experiences a second exodus as God saves His people and judges those who dwell on earth. 

 

Human Need

Like the congregation in the wilderness who witnessed the plagues in Egypt and saw God’s wonders and power, we too must recognize God’s power. God is not to be taken lightly and His commands must be obeyed.

  1. The Song of Moses and the Lamb (15:1-4)

 

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

And I saw what appeared to be a sea of glass mingled with fire—and also 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. And they sing the song of Moses, the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying,

       “Great and amazing are your deeds,

O Lord God the Almighty!

       Just and true are your ways,

O King of the nations!

   Who will not fear, O Lord,

and glorify your name?

       For you alone are holy.

All nations will come

and worship you,

       for your righteous acts have been revealed.”

 

  1. Final Plagues

Rather than Moses executing the Judgment of God with his staff, the seven angels are ready to execute judgment by means of the last plagues. These plagues are called bowl judgments because they are poured out by the angels on the earth and its inhabitants.

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

These span the rest of the Book of Revelation and will mean the end of everything on earth as we know it. Yet, much like the ten plagues in Egypt, they are meant to be mankind’s punishment and warning before final judgment and like Pharaoh who did not listen to Moses, those who dwell on the earth will not listen either.

  1. Heavenly Red Sea

And I saw what appeared to be a sea of glass mingled with fire—and also 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. And they sing the song of Moses, the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying,

The Red Sea in the Book of Exodus was the means God used to execute final judgment on Pharaoh and his army. Its drowning waves crashed in on the enemies of God and they were no more.

Remember all this was so that God could rescue worshippers for Himself. I will be their God and they will be My people and Moses’ declaration that God says, Let My people go so that they can worship Me. So, not only did the Red Sea mean destruction for God’s enemies, it also meant salvation for God’s people. They were released from slavery to worship God and they were released from slavery to be His people.

Notice the sea in heaven…it isn’t raging and treacherous but it is calm like fired glass. It isn’t a means of judgment but symbolic of God’s victory over our enemy, sin. That’s why when this sea is beheld and crossed the new song is the song of Moses and of Jesus, the Lamb. This sea is what will remind all of heaven’s inhabitants that we once were lost in darkest night and thought we knew the way, the sin that promised joy and life had led us to the grave…Like Moses lead the Hebrews to safety on the other side, so too Jesus will lead His people to safety. I don’t know what all will happen when we get to heaven, but I hope we cross that sea. Like the Hebrews did. I hope we look to the other side and see Jesus waiting. Then we will join the heavenly chorus singing the song of Moses and the Lamb.

  1. The Lord Receives the Glory

“Great and amazing are your deeds,

O Lord God the Almighty!

       Just and true are your ways,

O King of the nations!

   Who will not fear, O Lord,

and glorify your name?

       For you alone are holy.

All nations will come

and worship you,

       for your righteous acts have been revealed.”

Notice that not one part of this song is about us in any way. It is all about the complete power and glory of the Lord. He has done all the work and He receives all the glory.

The context of this new song is God’s work of salvation for His people and judgment for His enemies. In fact, this song of praise leads into the great bowl plagues of judgment. So true and so right are all of God’s deeds that we will be singing even of His wrath being poured out on His enemies.

It is that the martyr’s cry of how long oh Lord till our blood is avenged is answered as they praise Him for His righteous wrath on the world.

 

  1. The Seven Plagues of Wrath

 

After this I looked, and the sanctuary of the tent of witness in heaven was opened, and out of the sanctuary came the seven angels with the seven plagues, clothed in pure, bright linen, with golden sashes around their chests. And one of the four living creatures gave to the seven angels seven golden bowls full of the wrath of God who lives forever and ever, and the sanctuary was filled with smoke from the glory of God and from his power, and no one could enter the sanctuary until the seven plagues of the seven angels were finished.

The seven angels being dispatched by God Himself are armed with their bowls of wrath ready to be poured out one at a time on the earth. They originate from the sanctuary of the tent, in keeping with the Exodus theme. Their dress is fine luminous linen pure and bright with golden sashes around their chest.

 

  1. Reflection and Application

 

This chapter reminds us that God will have the last word. Those who are His must remain dedicated and growing in their love for Him. Those who remain enemies should also see that God not to be played with. He is the Sovereign of the universe and everyone will someday give an account.

I think we should leave with this verse in mind…

Galatians 6:7 (ESV)

Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap.

The seven angels stand ready to pour out bowls of plagues, bringing complete destruction to the earth and everyone who see the earth as their home…

This is a call to endurance by faith…

Hebrews 11:24–29 (ESV)

24 By faith Moses, when he was grown up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, 25 choosing rather to be mistreated with the people of God than to enjoy the fleeting pleasures of sin. 26 He considered the reproach of Christ greater wealth than the treasures of Egypt, for he was looking to the reward. 27 By faith he left Egypt, not being afraid of the anger of the king, for he endured as seeing him who is invisible. 28 By faith he kept the Passover and sprinkled the blood, so that the Destroyer of the firstborn might not touch them.

29 By faith the people crossed the Red Sea as on dry land, but the Egyptians, when they attempted to do the same, were drowned.

 

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