December 12/Revelation 8

Verse 1 > the seal was broken and trouble was coming but before anything happened there was silence. Could it be that the Lord was listening to hear if anyone was praying? Prayers in the bible have diverted and called off many disasters. Remember in in book of Jonah when the people of Nineveh repented of their sins at the preaching of Jonah God heard and saw what they did and he stopped the punishment he was about to inflict on them.

Jonah 3:6–10 (NLT) — 6 When the king of Nineveh heard what Jonah was saying, he stepped down from his throne and took off his royal robes. He dressed himself in burlap and sat on a heap of ashes. 7 Then the king and his nobles sent this decree throughout the city: “No one, not even the animals from your herds and flocks, may eat or drink anything at all. 8 People and animals alike must wear garments of mourning, and everyone must pray earnestly to God. They must turn from their evil ways and stop all their violence. 9 Who can tell? Perhaps even yet God will change his mind and hold back his fierce anger from destroying us.” 10 When God saw what they had done and how they had put a stop to their evil ways, he changed his mind and did not carry out the destruction he had threatened.

In 2Chronicles 12 Rehoboam and his people had to turned away from God and God sent Shishak of Egypt to punish Rehoboam. But he and his people humbled themselves before God so God did not carry out all he was going to do.

2 Chronicles 12:5–8 (NLT) — 5 The prophet Shemaiah then met with Rehoboam and Judah’s leaders, who had all fled to Jerusalem because of Shishak. Shemaiah told them, “This is what the Lord says: You have abandoned me, so I am abandoning you to Shishak.” 6 Then the leaders of Israel and the king humbled themselves and said, “The Lord is right in doing this to us!” 7 When the Lord saw their change of heart, he gave this message to Shemaiah: “Since the people have humbled themselves, I will not completely destroy them and will soon give them some relief. I will not use Shishak to pour out my anger on Jerusalem. 8 But they will become his subjects, so they will know the difference between serving me and serving earthly rulers.”

Never think that you are in a situation where “you don’t have a prayer”. We always have a prayer and the Lord is always listening for it.

Verses 2 > God is ready to sound the trumpets and dispatch his angels to help us in time of need. The angels are ready to attend to every command of God.

Hebrews 1:14 (NLT) — 14 Therefore, angels are only servants—spirits sent to care for people who will inherit salvation.

Verse 3 > Not one prayer goes unnoticed by God. They may not be answered right away but they are all collected and stored away by God. In Acts 10 Cornelius had prayed many times and now God was going to answer those prayers.

Acts 10:1–5 (NLT) — 1 In Caesarea there lived a Roman army officer named Cornelius, who was a captain of the Italian Regiment. 2 He was a devout, God-fearing man, as was everyone in his household. He gave generously to the poor and prayed regularly to God. 3 One afternoon about three o’clock, he had a vision in which he saw an angel of God coming toward him. “Cornelius!” the angel said. 4 Cornelius stared at him in terror. “What is it, sir?” he asked the angel. And the angel replied, “Your prayers and gifts to the poor have been received by God as an offering! 5 Now send some men to Joppa, and summon a man named Simon Peter.

Verse 4 > God is absolutely thrilled when people pray. It is a sweet smelling aroma like cinnamon apple pie baking on a spring day!

Verse 5 > Our prayers activate the power of God. No prayer. No power. No prayer. No salvation.

Romans 10:11–13 (NLT) — 11 As the Scriptures tell us, “Anyone who trusts in him will never be disgraced.” 12 Jew and Gentile are the same in this respect. They have the same Lord, who gives generously to all who call on him. 13 For “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

Verses 8-13 > the earth is a great home for mankind but it is a vulnerable one. An earthquake, a tsunami, a kidnapping, a coronary, a terminal illness, a death in the family and all of sudden we are looking for answers about life and its meaning, about this world, the next world and God. Now all of a sudden that big bank account, that pension, that new corvette, that big house that… don’t mean much. Our values change when a storm comes. I heard that on the Titanic one passenger left his cabin for the last time, leaving behind some 300,000 dollars in bonds and preferred stock. Instead he took with him three oranges. Of course neither the oranges nor the money would save him but his values sure changed. What is valuable to you today?

The only way to be ready for the storms of life is to have a rich relationship with the Lord. Prayer plays a vital part in that relationship. Prayer is taking time to be strengthened by the presence of the Lord as we meet with Him. Before Jesus went to the Cross he spent time in prayer to his Father in heaven and the Father sent an angel to strengthen him. Everything else must take second place when it comes to us developing a relationship with the Lord; Everything!

Storms serve as a reminder and a warning that life is short and life is fragile and no one can escape from death. The most man can do is prolong life, but eventually all will die and all will face a judgement. And so the Lord waits and listens for those prayers so that he can reach out and save a soul from eternal punishment. These verses in chapter 8 are the warning and the reminder that we need Jesus.

Ezekiel 33:3 (NLT) — 3 When the watchman sees the enemy coming, he sounds the alarm to warn the people.

God is sounding the alarm in this chapter are we ready for the storm that may come?

Be Inspired Hilltop!

 

Comments

  1. Mark Gundersen says:

    The first 4 trumpet judgements destroy 1/3 of everything but God warns that these are nothing compared to the next 3 judgements. There was still time to repent before the next judgements.