He himself, emphasis is placed upon the individual who worships the beast. He will be held individually responsible for his actions which will result in receiving Gods wrath and eternal damnation (see below). The devotees of the Beast are here warned and threatened with punishments of so terrible a character that the very mention of them is enough to make ones flesh creep.1 The reception of Gods judgment is often described as drinking from His cup (Ps. Ps. 75:8; Isa. Isa. 51:17, Isa. 51:22-23; Jer. Jer. 25:15-17, Jer. 25:28; Hab. Hab. 2:16; Rev. Rev. 16:19+).
But God is the Judge: He puts down one, and exalts another. For in the hand of the LORD there is a cup, and the wine is red; it is fully mixed, and He pours it out; surely its dregs shall the wicked of the earth drain and drink down. (Ps. Ps. 75:7-8)Throughout history God has warned kings that unless they kiss the Son, they would perish when His wrath is kindled but a little (Ps. Ps. 2:12). The ultimate fulfillment of this warning will be during the Campaign of Armageddon. Having drunk from the cup, the recipient is the object of Gods wrath (Job Job 21:20) and staggers with drunkenness, becoming mad so as to participate in the ultimate folly of his own destruction (Jer. Jer. 25:16, Jer. 25:27; Zec. Zec. 12:2-4). You have made us drink the wine of confusion (Ps. Ps. 60:3).
In their excitement I will prepare their feasts; I will make them drunk, that they may rejoice, and sleep a perpetual sleep and not awake, says the LORD. I will bring them down like lambs to the slaughter, like rams with male goats. (Jer. Jer. 51:39-40)
And I will make drunk her princes and wise men, her governors, her deputies, and her mighty men. And they shall sleep a perpetual sleep and not awake, says the King, Whose name is the LORD of hosts. (Jer. Jer. 51:57)This passage explains why, in the sequence of seals, trumpets, and bowls, it is the bowls which are last. Each of the final seven bowls comprises a portion of the final cup of Gods wrath. In the seven last plagues . . . the wrath of God is complete (Rev. Rev. 15:1+). They are the bowls of the wrath of God which are poured out on the earth (Rev. Rev. 16:1+). The wrath is manifest in Christs treading of the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God (Rev. Rev. 19:15+ cf. Isa. Isa. 63:1-6). See commentary on Revelation 11:18. wrath . . . indignation
Gods wrath is frequently mentioned in association with the judgments poured out during the Tribulation (Rev. Rev. 6:16+; Rev. 11:18+). Here, it denotes the wrath which is specifically associated with the worship of the Beast, which probably occurs after the abomination of desolation at the midpoint of the Tribulation. See Events of the 70th Week of Daniel. Wrath is θυμοῦ [thymou] , indignation is ὀργῆς [orgēs] :
Thymos refers to turbulent commotion, the boiling agitation of the feelings . . . that will either subside and disappear or else settle down into orgē, which is more of an abiding and settled habit of mind (an enduring anger) that is focused on revenge. . . . In his discussion of the two words, Origin arrived at the same conclusion: Thymos differs from orgē in that thymos is anger [orgē] rising in vapor and burning up, while orgē is a yearning for revenge. Jerome said: Thymos is incipient anger and displeasure fermenting in the mind; orgē however, when thymos has subsided, is that which longs for revenge and desires to injure the one thought to have caused harm.2poured out full strength
Κεκερασμένου ἀκράτου [Kekerasmenou akratou] , having been poured unmixed [undiluted], to cause to be fully experienced.3 This is a frightful phrase, for it indicates those who worship the Beast will undergo the full force of Gods wrath. The contents of the cup are not diluted, but of full intensity! whereas wine was so commonly mixed with water that to mix wine is used in Greek for to pour out wine; this wine of Gods wrath is undiluted; there is no drop of water to cool its heat. Naught of grace or hope is blended with it.4 They will experience divine wrath without restraint: eternal torment by the Power of powers, the author of a myriad of supernovas. He shall be tormented with fire and brimstone
Those who worship the Beast will be tormented with fire and brimstone indicating their ultimate destination. They will be cast into the lake of fire and brimstone where the beast and the false prophet are. And they will be tormented day and night forever and ever (Rev. Rev. 20:10+). Those who worship the Beast and take his mark are irredeemable. Even though they have not yet died, their fate in the Lake of Fire is sealed. See Beast Worshipers are Unique. They will have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death (Rev. Rev. 21:8+). As we saw in the previous chapter, those who worship the Beast have not been written in the Book of Life (see commentary on Revelation 13:8), thus they are destined for the Lake of Fire. Anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire (Rev. Rev. 20:15+). Those who refuse to worship the Beast during this time of intense persecution and pressure will do so only because they have given their worship to Jesus Christ. The cost of doing so will often be their physical life. The benefit will be their eternal life and participation in the first resurrection. Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection. Over such, the second death has no power (Rev. Rev. 20:6+). See commentary on Revelation 3:11. The fire and brimstone with which they are tormented is no less real than that which rains down upon Sodom and Gomorrah (Gen. Gen. 19:24-25) and Gog and his troops (Eze. Eze. 38:22) and which those taken in such judgments continue to suffer forever (Jude Jude 1:7). in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb
Isaiah speaks of a time when all flesh shall come to worship before the LORD, but also go forth and look upon the corpses of the men who transgressed against God. Somehow, these who are cast into outer darkness (Mtt. Mat. 8:12; Mat. 22:13; Mat. 25:30) are visible to the redeemed throughout eternity (Isa. Isa. 66:24).5 The damned will also see the blessed who enter the kingdom, whereas they themselves are thrust out (Luke Luke 13:28). Perhaps awareness of the alternative which the damned missed will contribute to their torment, similar to the way in which the rich man could see Lazarus in Abrahams bosom (Luke Luke 16:23). Although the holy angels and the Lamb will be present to see the torment of the damned, the damned will not benefit from an awareness of the presence of God (2Th. 2Th. 1:8-9) for this is the ultimate blessing reserved for the redeemed. The tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people (Rev. Rev. 21:3+). See The Abiding Presence of God, New Jerusalem.
2 Richard Chenevix Trench, Commentary on the Epistles to the Seven Churches in Asia (Eugene, OR: Wipf and Stock Publishers, 1861), 146.
4 A. R. Fausset, The Revelation of St. John the Divine, in Robert Jamieson, A. R. Fausset, and David Brown, A Commentary, Critical and Explanatory, on the Old and New Testaments (Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 1997, 1877), Rev. 14:8.
5 God is omnipresent, even in hell: Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence? If I ascend into heaven, You are there; If I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there. If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there Your hand shall lead me, and Your right hand shall hold me. If I say, Surely the darkness shall fall on me, even the night shall be light about me; indeed, the darkness shall not hide from You, but the night shines as the day; the darkness and the light are both alike to You (Ps. Ps. 139:7-12). Yet something more is in view here, for the holy angels, who lack omnipresence, are also said to have access to the damned.