Week 9 – The 144,000 Rev 7, 14
Chapters 2-3 Letters to the seven churches
Chapter 4 The Rapture & the Throne Room of Heaven
Chapter 5 The seven sealed book
Chapter 6 The first six seals are opened
The Rapture happens in 4:1 After this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will show thee things which must be hereafter.
There is a break
, a parentheses after the opening of the 6th
Seal, Trumpet and Bowl judgments. Sometimes it is a few verses and sometimes a few chapters. Chapter 7 is after the opening of the 6th
seal and before the opening of the 7th
The last verse in chapter six is;
For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand? Rev 6:17
And so begins the seven year period of time known as the 70th week of Daniel.
Chapter 7 Outline
Sealed Servants Ch. 7:1-8, 144,000 from 12 Tribes
Saved Servants Ch. 7:9-17, From out of the Tribulation
1] And after these things I saw four angels standing on the four corners of the earth, holding the four winds of the earth, that the wind should not blow on the earth, nor on the sea, nor on any tree.
2] And I saw another angel ascending from the east, having the seal of the living God: and he cried with a loud voice to the four angels, to whom it was given to hurt the earth and the sea,
3] Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads.
These four angels are apparently the four who will blow the first four trumpets in Chapter 8…
4] And I heard the number of them which were sealed: and there were sealed an hundred and forty and four thousand of all the tribes of the children of Israel.
This 144,000 preserved through (sealed) the Tribulation, not “kept out” of it, as in Rev 3:10. Note: Gifts and calling of God are without repentance (Rom 11:29).
5] Of the tribe of Judah were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Reuben were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Gad wer e sealed twelve thousand.
6] Of the tribe of Aser were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Nepthalim were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Manasseh were sealed twelve thousand.
7] Of the tribe of Simeon were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Levi were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Issachar were sealed twelve thousand.
8] Of the tribe of Zabulon were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Joseph were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Benjamin were sealed twelve thousand.
Judah is listed first: 1 Chr 5:1,2. There are 14 names to choose from: Joseph provides a “baker’s dozen” with Manasseh and Ephraim. Levi is not always listed because as priests they were not to go to war and many lists were of tribes going to war. Deut 18:1,2; Josh 13:14.
Note: Jewishness since Chapter 4 and following with references like “Lion,” “Lamb,” “Root of David,” etc.
Two Tribes are Missing: Dan and Ephraim.
The Kingdom Divided
930 B.C.: Jeroboam ruled the Northern Kingdom from his capital in Samaria (1 Kgs 11:43-12:33). When Jeroboam turned the Northern Kingdom to idolatry, the Levites (and others who desired to remain faithful) migrated south to Rehoboam (2 Chr 11:14-17). Even before the Assyrian captivity, substantial numbers from the northern tribes had identified themselves with the house of David (1 Kgs 12:16-20; 2 Chr 11:16-17). Many to repudiated the Northern Kingdom and united with the southern kingdom in a common alliance to the house of David and to worship the Lord (2 Chr 19:4; 30:1,10,11,25,26; 34:5-7,22; 35:17,18). Horrified that Jeroboam set up a rival religion with golden calf worship at Bethel(Epraim) and Dan, many Northerners moved south, knowing that the only place acceptable to God was the Temple on Mt. Moriah (Deut 12:5-7; 16:2-6; Isa 18:7). Those who favored idolatry migrated north to Jeroboam. Later, when Asa reigned as king in the south, another great company came from the north (2 Chr 15:9). Years after the deportation by Assyria, King Hezekiah of Judah issued a call to all Israel to come and worship in Jerusalem and celebrate Passover (2 Chr 30:5-21). Eighty years later, King Josiah of Judah also issued a call, and an offering for the temple was received from “Manasseh and Ephraim and all the remnant of Israel...” (2 Chr 34:9). Eventually, all 12 tribes were represented in the south: God addresses the 12 tribes in the south: “Speak unto Rehoboam the son of Solomon, king of Judah, and to all Israel in Judah and Benjamin...” (2 Chr 11:3). The “Tribe of Judah” is sometimes used idiomatically for the Southern Kingdom (2 Kgs 17:18, et al. Cf. 1 Kgs 11:13,32, etc.). When encountering tribal designations, it is important to distinguish between the territories allocated to the tribes and the people themselves.
The Northern Kingdom Falls
724 B.C.: Shalmaneser V besieged Samaria for three years. King Hoshea of Israel attempted to revolt against paying Assyrians annual tribute money (a treaty with Pharaoh of Egypt did not help) and Samaria, Jeroboam’s capital, fell in 722 B.C. (2 Kgs 18:2). 721 B.C.: Sargon II seized power. Assyrians pulled down towers, took 27,290 captive, placed an Assyrian ruler over the city, and looted it. The Assyrians implemented their infamous policy of mixing conquered
peoples to keep them from organizing a revolt. The Israelite captives were mixed with Persians and others; strangers from far-off lands were resettled in Samaria. The resulting mixed, quasi-Jewish populations resulted in the “Samaritans” (John 4:20). Not all from the northern kingdom was deported. Archaeologists have uncovered annals of the Assyrian Sargon, in which he tells that he carried away only 27,290 people and 50 chariots (Biblical Archaeologist, VI, 1943, p.58). Estimates of the population of the northern kingdom at that time range from 400,000 to 500,000; less than 1/20th were deported - mostly the leadership from around the capital, Samaria. The Babylonians Take over 722 B.C.: When the Northern Kingdom went into captivity all 12 tribes
were also represented in the south. (The Northern Kingdom was taken by Assyria as slaves, which were a valuable commodity. (It is difficult to view them as careless enough to let them wander off to Europe.) In 586 B.C., when the Babylonians took the Southern Kingdom into
captivity, members of all 12 tribes of Israel were involved. When the Babylonians took over Assyria, the descendants of the captives from the North were probably again commingled with the captives of Judah. Isaiah, prophesying to Judah, refers to them as the “House of Jacob,
which are called by the name of Israel...” (Isa 48:1; cf. vv12-14).
Even before the death of Rehoboam, God looked upon all the as a unity, seeing “all Israel in Judah and Benjamin” (2 Chr 11:3). After the Babylonian captivity, the terms Jew and Israelite are used interchangeably: Ezra calls the returning remnant “Jews” 8 times, “Israel” 40 times. Ezra speaks of “all Israel” (Ezra 2:70; 3:11; 8:35; 10:25). Nehemiah calls them Jews 11 times, Israel 22 times. Nehemiah speaks of “all Israel being back in the land (Neh 12:47). The remnant who returned from Babylon is represented as “the nation” (Mal 1:1).
New Testament Nomenclature
Our Lord is said to have offered Himself to the nation, “the lost sheep of the house of Israel” (Mt 10:5-6; 15:24). The New Testament speaks of “Israel” 75 times and “Jew” 174 times (Acts 21:39; 22:3; Rom 11:1; 2 Cor 11:22; Phil 3:5,etc.); “The twelve tribes” (Acts 26:7; Jas 1:1).
Anna knew her tribal identity (the tribe of Asher; Lk 2:30); Paul knew he was of the tribe of Benjamin: a “Jew” and an “Israelite,” Rom 11:1); Peter cries: “Ye men of Judea” (Acts 2:14) and “ye men of Israel...” (Acts 2:22 ) and “All the house of Israel” (Acts 2:36). Regathered as One
The Dry Bones Vision declares Judah (“Jews?”) and Israel (“10 tribes?”) shall be joined as one in the regathering (Ezek 37:16-17, 21-22). This is true today. [The total physical descendants were not the people to whom the promises were made (Rom 9:4-7).] Accompanying some of the legends of the so-called “10 Lost Tribes” are aspersions on the present State of Israel and the people being regathered in the Land. These various theories such as “British Israelism” are by
their nature anti-Semitic (and blasphemous) because they deny the Jewish people their proper place in the plan of God.
The Sealing of the 144,000: Why Wasn’t Dan Listed?
Prophecy of Jacob: “A serpent…” (Gen 49:17)
Prophecy of Moses: “Leap from Bashan” ( Deut 33:22)
Left allocated territories ( Judg 18)
Deborah: “Didn’t leave his ships” (Judg 5:17)
Omitted from genealogies (1 Chr 1-8)
Not sealed in the Tribulation (Rev 7)
Tribe through which idolatry entered the land (Lev 24:10-16; Judg 18:1,2,30-31)
A leader in apostasy under Jeroboam (1 Kgs 12:28-30)
and 100 years later (2 Kgs 10:29)
the “Voice of Calamity” (Jer 4:14; Heb); Amos 8:14; Heb)
Curse: Jer 8:16
Idolaters name to be blotted out:
Lest there should be among you man, or woman, or family, or tribe, whose heart turneth away this day from the LORD our God, to go and serve the gods of these nations; lest there should be among you a root that beareth gall and wormwood; And it come to pass, when he heareth the words of this curse, that he bless himself in his heart, saying, I shall have peace, though I walk in the imagination of mine heart, to add drunkenness to thirst: The LORD will not spare him, but then the anger of the LORD and his jealousy shall smoke against that man, and all the curses that are written in this book shall lie upon him, and the LORD shall blot out his name from under heaven. And the LORD shall separate him unto evil out of all the tribes of Israel, according to all the curses of the covenant that are written in this book of the law: Deuteronomy 29:18-21
And yet, Dan shall judge his people as one of the tribes of Israel (Gen 49:16) and Dan inherits territory in the Millennium (Ezek 48:1).
Ephraim: Also Omitted
Ephraim is also referred to only elliptically: Joseph = Manasseh + Ephraim. Thus: Joseph - Manasseh = Ephraim. Ephraim was also associated with Jeroboam’s idolatry (Hos 4:17).
Here marks a division of the chapter. Verses 1-8 are about the sealing of the 144,000 Jews who will be armed with the Gospel and a great knowledge of the OT witnessing during the tribulation. This evangelical effort is climaxed by a great multitude of souls being saved as described in last half of the chapter verses 9-17.
9] After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude
, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb
, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands;
10] And cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb.
This throng preserved through (sealed) the Tribulation, not “kept out” of it, as in Rev 3:10. Note: Gifts and calling of God are without repentance (Rom 11:29). Here, the greatest harvest of souls the world has ever seen will take place! (Written in Isa 49:10-12; 60:1-3.) Joel 2:28-32 (quoted in Acts 2:16-21) links with these prophecies of the Great Tribulation. “Palm branches”: as on “Palm Sunday,” cf. John 12:13. Also, possible link with Feast of Tabernacles (Lev 23:39,43; 2 Chr 20:19; Ezra 3:11-12; Jn 12:12-13; Neh 8:15-17).
11] And all the angels stood round about the throne, and about the elders and the four beasts
, and fell before the throne on their faces, and worshipped God,
12] Saying, Amen: Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, and thanksgiving, and honour, and power, and might, be unto our God for ever and ever. Amen.
13] And one of the elders answered, saying unto me, What are these which are arrayed in white robes? and whence came they?
14] And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.
A more accurate translation of the four beasts are the four living creatures. Probably super angels. Vs 12 has seven praise elements.
John apparently doesn’t recognize who they are. Why are they distinguished from those prior to the tribulation? Because their predecessors are already in heaven!
15] Therefore are they before the throne of God, and serve him day and night in his temple: and he that sitteth on the throne shall dwell among them.
16] They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat.
Millennial Temple: In heaven there is no night nor temple (Rev 21:25; 22:5).
17] For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.
The 144,000 are mentioned again chapter 14.
Rev 14:1 And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Sion, and with him an hundred forty and four thousand, having his Father’s name written in their foreheads.
2] And I heard a voice from heaven, as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of a great thunder: and I heard the voice of harpers harping with their harps:
3] And they sung as it were a new song before the throne, and before the four beasts, and the elders: and no man could learn that song but the hundred and forty and four thousand, which were redeemed from the earth.
4] These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and of the Lamb.
5] And in their mouth was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God.
The 144,000 are destined to be the elite (Rev 14:4).
Tribulation Saints 24 Elders
Not Crowned Crowned
Palms in their hands Harps in theirhands
Saved “out of” the Tribulation “Kept out” of the Trib (Rev 3:10)
These stand before thrones Sit on thrones (1 Cor 6:2,3; 1 Pet 2:9; Rev 1:6)
These serve Him day and night Reign as kings & priests (1Cor 6:2,3; 1 Pet 2:9; Rev 1:6)
Not recognized by John