Fear God and give glory to Him
It seems unlikely that the words that John heard the angel say constitute the entire gospel message delivered to the earth dwellers
. Rather, it summarizes what their response should be. The specifics of the gospel message itself are not recorded. The warning of the angel occurs before the institution of the mark of the Beast
. Those who hear the angel and respond in faith are those who are found in the opening verses of the next chapter doing this very thing!
They sing the song of Moses, the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying: Great and marvelous are Your works, Lord God Almighty! Just and true are Your ways, O King of the saints! Who shall not fear You, O Lord, and glorify Your name? For You alone are holy. For all nations shall come and worship before You, for Your judgments have been manifested. (Rev. Rev. 15:3-4+) [emphasis added]
These who hear and fear
have victory over the beast, his image, his mark, and the number of his name. the hour of His judgment has come Has come
] , prophetic aorist. The time of His judgment is certain and imminent
, as if it is already underway. Now is the time of decision.
The nations were angry, and Your wrath has come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and that you should reward Your servants the prophets and the saints, and those who fear Your name, small and great, and should destroy those who destroy the earth. (Rev. Rev. 11:18+)
worship Him who made heaven and earth
The Creator-creature distinction is the basis for all worship (Ne. Ne. 9:6
; Acts Acts 14:14
). Only the Creator is worthy of worship. Worship of all else is idolatry. See commentary on Revelation 4:11
. The angel declares an important truth which great portions of the Church now compromise. Although readily admitting God as Creator, their Creator God is not that of the Scriptures, but a god of their own creation. They endorse the belief that both the universe and the earth are billions of years old and that God used, and continues to use, blind processes (accidental mutation and natural selection) to bring about His creative work.1
Instead of upholding the clear Scriptural teaching of a six-day creation (Ex. Ex. 20:11
), they accommodate flawed science and relegate the need for a Creator God into a smaller and smaller sphere, even embracing unscriptural ideas such as the existence of soulless pre-Humans
These naively contribute to the ultimate state of godlessness of the earth dwellers at the end. The blindness of the earth dwellers to the Creator in the book of Revelation can already be seen in our own times. Great effort and expenditure is underway to find life on Mars and to search the far reaches of space for signs of intelligence. All the while, here on earth, advances such as those in microbiology, bioengineering, and genetics shout INTELLIGENCE! Lacking a belief in a Creator, the creature naturally seeks to elevate something else in His place. Such is the pattern of idolatry which will manifest itself in the last times as worship to the image of the Beast
when he is brought to life (Rev. Rev. 13:14-15+
1 Ignoring the fact that accidents of mutation result in a net loss of information whereas evolution requires a gain in information.
2 To revert to the problem of the Pithecanthropus, the Swanscombe man, the Neanderthal and all the rest (possibly even the Cro-magnon man, who is apparently to be classed as Homo sapiens, but whose remains seem to date back at least to 20,000 B.C.) it seems best to regard these races as all prior to Adams time, and not involved in the Adamic covenant. We must leave the question open, in view of the cultural remains, whether these pre-Adamic creatures had souls (or, to use the trichotomic terminology, spirits).Archer, G. Jr., A Survey of Old Testament Introduction, rev. ed., (Chicago, IL: Moody Press, 1985), pp. 204-205 cited in Creation Magazine, 24(4), September-November 2002, p. 45. [www.AnswersInGenesis.org] My acceptance of Adam and Eve as historical is not incompatible with my belief that several forms of pre-Adamic hominid seem to have existed for thousands of years previously. . . . It is conceivable that God created Adam out of one of them. . . . I think you may even call some of them Homo sapiens. . . John Stott, Understanding the Bible, rev. ed., (Sydney: Scripture Union Publishing, 1984), p. 49 cited in Creation Magazine, 24(4), September-November 2002, p. 43. [www.AnswersInGenesis.org]