Introduction: These transcripts of Kay Arthur's lectures on Revelation (Parts 2-4) are provided as a service to the body of Christ with the written permission of Precept Ministries International. This material is the property of Precept Ministries International and all rights are reserved. The transcripts are for the most part verbatim with deletions identified by the characters (...). The utilization of italics, bolding, hyperlinks and pop up notes represent editorial additions. Any written additions are identified by the designation "Ed note". Note that all text in blue identifies a link or popup. All reference are the NASB unless otherwise indicated. Please note that these lectures by Kay Arthur supplement the excellent Precept Upon Precept inductive Bible study on the Revelation. Click the following links to view each division of this encouraging study and note that you can also download the first lesson of each of the 4 parts:
If you can find a local Precept class studying Revelation, I would strongly encourage you to join the class, as I know of no other study available anywhere in the world that will equip you so thoroughly to discern the signs of the times and cause you to live expectantly as you look for Christ's Return!
Literal chart summaries
Index to Revelation Lectures
|Part 2||Part 3||Part 4|
Revelation Pt 2, Lecture 11
by Kay Arthur
Whose side are you on? You may say ''I'm on both sides...God's and the world's.''(cf Mt 6:24+) But you can't have the best of BOTH kingdoms. Today we will look at TWO kingdoms ( = 2 worlds) , TWO powers, TWO women.
Revelation reveals the "BEST" of Satan's kingdom: a dragon, a beast and a false prophet! An ''unholy'' trinity. And a woman ''Mystery Babylon, the mother of harlots''.
(Ed note: Before discussing Revelation 11 and 12, Kay reviews to put us in the proper context. Note however that this transcript does not include every detail covered in Kay's review as most of this material has been already recorded in transcripts of the previous lectures. Click here for chart summary of Revelation 4-10 and 11-16)
In Revelation 8:7-12 the first four trumpets sound resulting in devastation and destruction on earth (Click here for chart summary of the first four trumpets)
After these four trumpets sound, John records "And I looked, and I heard an eagle flying in mid-heaven, saying with a loud voice, "Woe, woe, woe, to those who dwell on the earth, because of the remaining blasts of the trumpet of the three angels who are about to sound!" (Rev8:13)
|First Woe||Corresponds to the sounding of the Fifth Trumpet which unleashes the horrors described in Rev 9:1-11|
|"The first woe is past;
two woes are still coming
after these things."
|Second Woe||Corresponds to the sounding of the Sixth Trumpet resulting in death of 1/3 of mankind Rev9:13-21|
|"The second woe is past;
the third woe is coming quickly."
Now let's look at Revelation 11, specifically the main characters and the time Frame (Click here for summary charts on Revelation 4-10 Revelation 11-16 Revelation 17-19 Revelation 20-22)
In Rev 11 we first encounter the 2 Witnesses who prophesy for 3 1/2 yrs (1260 days, 42 months). Referring to the table below, note that this period ends after the 6th trumpet and is contemporaneous with the passing of the 2nd Woe (see summary of woe's above).
Rev11:3 gives the time period of the events in this chapter, John recording God's declaration: "And I will grant authority to My two witnesses, and they will prophesy for twelve hundred and sixty days, clothed in sackcloth."
In Rev 11 the world witnesses the power of God demonstrated when the 2 witnesses who have been killed by the beast ("who comes up out of the abyss" = same beast as one described in Rev17:8) are caught up to heaven after laying dead in the streets of Jerusalem for 3 1/2 days. John records that "in that hour (the "hour" the 2 witnesses went up into heaven) there was a great earthquake, and a tenth of the city fell; and 7000 people were killed in the earthquake and the rest were terrified and gave glory to the God of heaven." Yes, the world gives God ''glory'' but not in the worshipful sense as would a genuine believer. Glory means that one gives a correct opinion or correct estimate of God, describing what the world did upon witnessing the coming to life and removal of the two witnesses.
When this 3 1/2 year period begins in relation to the seals and trumpets, we cannot establish at this time but we can determine when it ENDS (the 2nd woe is past and the seventh trumpet is about to be sounded). Keep in mind that this specific time marks a pivotal section in the overall timing of the events of the Revelation.
From Revelation 11 it is clear that the entire world has had the opportunity to see that there is a God!
The world also sees that there are two powers in direct conflict, one being the power of Satan and of the beast who put the 2 witnesses to death (see a description of this power in Rev 13) and the power of God Who revived the 2 witnesses. We also see that there are two kingdoms, the kingdom of God and the kingdom of the beast. The line has been clearly drawn for all to see the difference between these two choices.
Remember that after the 2nd WOE has past (correlating with the 6th trumpet) John records that "the seventh angel sounded (7th trumpet) and there arose loud voices in heaven, saying, "The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ and He will reign forever and ever." (Rev 11:15) This declaration does not necessarily mean that Jesus has returned to earth but that a process has been initiated which will culminate in the consummation of His kingdom. Up until this time, the judgment on the world is described in a more general sense ( the 4 horses, etc). From this point on the wrath is directed against the kingdom of the beast and against his throne.
In Revelation 16 the 7 bowls are poured out on the throne of the beast. So between the 6th and 7th trumpets (the 7th trumpet being in a sense synonymous with the the 7 bowls for they issue out of the 7th trumpet) there is a direct assault of one kingdom against another. The lines are drawn as we see in Rev16:12 "And the sixth angel poured out his bowl upon the great river, the Euphrates; and its water was dried up, that the way might be prepared for the kings from the east." So they are marching to Zion to make war against the Lord's Anointed. Psalm 2 shows that the nations of the world know Who their enemy is = God Almighty. Ps2:1 "Why are the nations in an uproar, and the peoples devising a vain thing? 2 The kings of the earth take their stand, and the rulers take counsel together against the LORD and against His Anointed"
Rev16:19 ''... Babylon the great was remembered before God, to give her the cup of the wine of His fierce wrath.''
So when is Babylon destroyed? At the pouring out of the 7th BOWL.
When did the wrath of God begin? At the 6th seal:
Rev 6:17 ''... the great day of their wrath has come...'' describing in general terms God's wrath. Then God's wrath is seen in specific terms in Rev 16 when the bowls are poured out on the kingdom of the beast. God's wrath is finished by the 7th BOWL.
TWO "THREE AND ONE-HALF YEAR"
The first timeframe is the identified by the 3.5 year period of God's 2 witnesses which comes to an end after the 6th trumpet when the 2 witnesses are killed by the beast who comes up out of the abyss (the 2 witnesses have prophesied for 1260 days or 3.5 years Rev12:3)
The second timeframe (click for explanation below) is identified when Satan is cast out of heaven to earth and persecutes the woman, Israel, for a 3.5 year period.
We know that after the 6th trumpet and with the blowing of the 7th trumpet, the kingdom of this world has become the kingdom of His Christ (Rev 11:15) and that this marks the beginning of a process that is associated with the pouring out of the 7 bowl judgments which come out of the 7th trumpet.
We also know the time when Babylon will be destroyed -- at the pouring out of the 7th bowl at which time a great earthquake occurs "and the great city was split into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell. And Babylon the great was remembered before God, to give her the cup of the wine of His fierce wrath." (Rev 16:19). So during the period in which the 7 bowls are being poured out, Babylon is a active, functioning city.
Revelation 12 describes a "frontal attack" on Satan, the head of the kingdom of this world. Satan is cast down to earth in Rev 12:10. In addition we see that one-third of the angels were swept out of heaven as described in Rev 12:4 (the dragon's "tail swept away a third of the stars of heaven and threw them to the earth..."). In order to accurately interpret the meaning of John's figurative language in Rev 12:4 we need to observe the parallel passages that help us understand that ''stars'' is used figuratively in the Old Testament to refer to ''angels''.
HOW CAN WE INTERPRET
The most helpful passages to understand the meaning of John's figurative description are found in the book of Job.
Job 1:6 "Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan also came among them." (see also Job 2:1)
Job 38:7 in context is referring to the time of the creation "When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy?"
These passages support the interpretation of stars as the sons of God and in context of Job 1 as angels.
Now compare these passages with Rev 12:9 "And the great dragon was thrown down, the serpent of old who is called the devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world; he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him." This reference also supports the interpretation that the stars are angels.
Rev12:10 "And I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, "Now the salvation, and the power, and the kingdom of our God and the authority of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren has been thrown down, who accuses them before our God day and night." (Ed note: this verse shows that in this present age Satan still has access to God's presence.)
As discussed in Lecture 10 (Click here to see explanation), "the kingdom of our God "in Rev12:10 parallels Rev11:15 which records that the '' kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord''. Comparing these passages, one can conclude that the process of changing ruler ship of the world occurs at the same time that Satan, the dragon, the serpent of old, is cast down to the earth.
SUMMARY OF THE COMPARISONS
|Kingdom of this world headed by the beast
Kingdom of God headed by Christ
|Satan's power: sends flood in attempt to sweep away "the woman".
God's power: opens up the earth to swallow the flood.
|God's woman: flees into wilderness:
The "other woman" named Babylon is described in Rev 17-18
We also see the two powers in direct conflict in the events surrounding the two witnesses in Rev 11 (power of the beast from abyss kills them but after 3.5 days God's power revives them)
We will now look at the events surrounding the second 3.5 year time period .
We will begin by looking at 2 key women in the book of the Revelation, one described in Revelation 12 and the other in Revelation 17.
|Revelation 12:1 And a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars;
2 and she was with child; and she cried out, being in labor and in pain to give birth.
3 And another sign appeared in heaven: and behold, a great red dragon having seven heads and ten horns, and on his heads were seven diadems.
4 And his tail swept away a third of the stars of heaven, and threw them to the earth. And the dragon stood before the woman who was about to give birth, so that when she gave birth he might devour her child.
5 And she gave birth to a son, a male child, who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron; and her child was caught up to God and to His throne.
Two of the key women in Revelation have their origin in the book of Genesis. The woman in Revelation 12 is surely a reference to Israel and passages in Genesis help interpret John's figurative language in Rev 12.
|Genesis 37:9-11 describes Joseph's second dream: "9 Now he had still another dream, and related it to his brothers, and said, "Lo, I have had still another dream; and behold, the sun and the moon and eleven stars were bowing down to me. 10 And he related it to his father and to his brothers; and his father rebuked him and said to him, "What is this dream that you have had? Shall I and your mother and your brothers actually come to bow ourselves down before you to the ground?"11 And his brothers were jealous of him, but his father kept the saying in mind.."|
So this dream pictures Joseph's father Jacob ("the sun"), his mother Rachel ("the moon") and his eleven brothers ("the 11 stars") bowing down before him (Joseph would make the 12th star).
The "woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars" is Israel, who God brings into existence in Gen 12 when Abraham is called out of Ur.
|Genesis 12:1 "Now the LORD said to Abram, "Go forth from your country, and from your relatives And from your father's house, to the land which I will show you 2 And I will make you a great nation..."|
So here in Rev 12 God is giving us a compressed picture of historic events, first alluding to the nation of Israel and then jumping forward to 4 B.C. (the birth of Jesus) describing the woman as pregnant with a Male child Who is to rule over all nations with a rod of iron.
Who is "the Male Child Who will rule over all nations with a rod of iron"?
In (Psalm 2:9) God prophesied that His Son, the Messiah, would "break them (referring to the Gentile nations) with a rod of iron". The psalmist records...
|Psalm 2:7-9: “I will surely tell of the decree of the Lord: He said to Me, ‘Thou art My Son. Today I have begotten Thee. Ask of Me, and I will surely give the nations as Thine inheritance, and the very ends of the earth as Thy possession.‘ Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron, Thou shalt shatter them like earthenware.’”|
Comparing this passage from Psalm 2 with (Rev 19:15) where John records that Jesus "will rule...with a rod of iron" helps us understand that the "male child, who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron" in (Rev12:5) is clearly a description of Jesus. Mary, a Jew, from the tribe of Judah and the house of David, gave birth to Jesus, Who after His crucifixion and resurrection ascended to heaven, being "caught up to God and to His throne."
The dragon in Revelation 12 is obviously Satan, the serpent of old, who carries 1/3 of angelic host to earth when he is cast out of heaven. He is described as a dragon with 7 heads and 10 horns who "stood before the woman who was about to give birth, so that when she gave birth he might devour" Jesus. Satan attacked Jesus through Herod (who was from the Roman Empire) by attempting to kill the baby Jesus. (Ed note: Matthew records that at the time of the birth of Jesus "when Herod saw that he had been tricked by the magi, he became very enraged, and sent and slew all the male children who were in Bethlehem and in all its environs, from two years old and under, according to the time which he had ascertained from the magi." Mt 2:16)
From the 7th trumpet and afterward in the Revelation, we see a direct assault by the Lord upon the dragon and his kingdom in order to restore the kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ. (Ed note: This process begins at the sounding of the 7th Trumpet [see Rev 11:15 below]. As stated earlier "This declaration does not necessarily mean that Jesus has returned to earth but that a process has been initiated which will culminate in the consummation of His kingdom. Up until this time, the judgment on the world is described in a more general sense (the 4 horses, etc). From this point on the wrath is directed against the kingdom of the beast and against his throne.")
|Revelation 11:15 "And the seventh angel sounded; and there arose loud voices in heaven, saying, "The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord, and of His Christ; and He will reign forever and ever."|
In Rev 12 the woman flees into the wilderness for 3.5 years (1260 days = time and times and half a time) and this time period appears begins when the dragon, Satan, is cast down to earth.
|Rev12:6 "And the woman fled into the wilderness where she had a place prepared by God, so that there she might be nourished for one thousand two hundred and sixty days."...14 And the two wings of the great eagle were given to the woman, in order that she might fly into the wilderness to her place, where she was nourished for a time and times and half a time, (Ed note: equivalent to the 1260 day period in Rev 12:6. Compare the same phrase in Daniel 7:25, 12:7, which refers to the second 3.5 year period) from the presence of the serpent."|
From these verses we can know there has to be another 3.5 year period. You can also see that the time when Satan is cast out of heaven and down to earth marks a pivotal point in the timing of the events in the book of Revelation, for this event marks the beginning of the establishment of the kingdom of Christ on the earth.
In summary, what can we know from these passages? We can know that there is...
3.5 year period preceding casting out of Satan
3.5 year period following casting out of Satan
7 years period representing the sum of these periods
Rev 12:15 demonstrates the conflict between two powers and two kingdoms, John recording that "the serpent poured water like a river out of his mouth (Satan's power) after the woman (Israel), so that he might cause her to be swept away with the flood. 16 And the earth helped the woman and the earth opened its mouth (God's power) and drank up the river which the dragon poured out of his mouth."
The Woman in Revelation 17: Babylon
|Revelation 17:1 And one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls came and spoke with me, saying, "Come here, I shall show you the judgment of the great harlot who sits on many waters,
2 with whom the kings of the earth committed acts of immorality, and those who dwell on the earth were made drunk with the wine of her immorality."
3 And he carried me away in the Spirit into a wilderness; and I saw a woman sitting on a scarlet beast, full of blasphemous names, having seven heads and ten horns.
4 And the woman was clothed in purple and scarlet, and adorned with gold and precious stones and pearls, having in her hand a gold cup full of abominations and of the unclean things of her immorality,
5 and upon her forehead a name was written, a mystery, "BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH."
This "woman" Babylon is first described in Genesis 11 after God had destroyed the whole earth with a flood.
Genesis 11:3 And they said to one another, "Come, let us make bricks and burn [them] thoroughly." And they used brick for stone, and they used tar for mortar. 4 And they said, "Come, let us build for ourselves A CITY, and a tower WHOSE TOP WILL REACH INTO HEAVEN, (opposed to heaven) and let us make FOR OURSELVES A NAME; (overcomers in contrast have the name of their God, of the city of their God, a new name) lest we be scattered abroad over the face of the whole earth." 5 And the Lord came down to see the city and the tower which the sons of men had built. 6 And the Lord said, "Behold, they are one people, and they all have the same language. And this is what they began to do, and now nothing which they purpose to do will be impossible for them. 7 "Come, let Us go down and there confuse their language, that they may not understand one another's speech." 8 So the Lord scattered them abroad from there over the face of the whole earth; and they stopped building the city. 9 Therefore its name was called BABEL, because there the Lord confused the language of the whole earth; and from there the Lord scattered them abroad over the face of the whole earth.
So the Woman Babylon begins is Genesis and meets her demise in Revelation.
When Satan is cast out of heaven in Rev 13, two other events are triggered:
3.5 years of Persecution of the woman by Satan Rev 12:14
3.5 years of Persecution of the saints by the beast Rev 13:5
Revelation 13: Beast Described.
He is given power from the dragon.
The whole earth worships him.
The beast has authority for 42 months or 3.5 years.
Note that with the description of each major character (woman, beast, etc), God gives specific timeframes. The scope of the beast's power and authority is over the whole world. So for 3.5 years the beast has total authority and power to function as the WORLD RULER. Up until this time the judgments have not been upon the whole earth (1/3 of sun, 1/3 of sea, 1/3 of waters to blood, etc) but now as the bowl judgments are poured, they are now against the WHOLE EARTH since the judgment is against the beast, whose kingdom is the whole earth.
Whose kingdom do you belong to?
|Rev 13:16 And he causes all, the small and the great, and the rich and the poor, and the free men and the slaves, to be given a mark on their right hand, or on their forehead, 17 and he provides that no one should be able to buy or to sell, except the one who has the mark, either the name of the beast or the number of his name. 18 Here is wisdom. Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for the number is that of a man; and his number is 666.|
Rev 13 explains that Satan demands worship of the beast or else you won't be able buy or sell and you won't eat unless you have the mark of the beast. This period cannot be longer than 3.5 years because that is the amount of time allotted for the beast to exercise authority over the WHOLE earth. What about individuals who say "I've got to have food for my family or they will die?" Rev 13 says they must have the mark. So what God is doing here is "drawing a line" which calls for a choice. Whose kingdom will you choose?
In Revelation 14 John describes the fate of all who worship the beast or his image or who receive his mark...
|Rev 14:9 And another angel, a third one, followed them, saying with a loud voice, "If anyone worships the beast and his image, and receives a mark on his forehead or upon his hand, 10 he also will drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is mixed in full strength in the cup of His anger; and he will be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb. 11 And the smoke of their torment goes up forever and ever; and they have no rest day and night, those who worship the beast and his image, and whoever receives the mark of his name."|
You can't have the BEST OF BOTH WORLDS!
If you choose the ''best'' of Satan's world, you get what the dragon, beast, false prophet and the harlot who rides on the beast get. She is drunk with the blood of the prophets and you get this woman, becoming in a sense her "child", so that your (spiritual) "mother" is a whore over the whole earth. The woman in Revelation 17 describes a system which is opposed to God and has been since its birth in Genesis 11. When she was ''born'', all the world went after her, but God said ''I will have a holy seed, a holy remnant.'' So He reached down into the morass of humanity and He chose Israel (Genesis 12). And even though most of Israel over the subsequent centuries opposed Him, "the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable" (Ro11:26). In Revelation 12 God is showing us that He will keep every one of His covenants and promises to Israel.
|Rev 14:13 And I heard a voice from heaven, saying, "Write, 'Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on!'" "Yes," says the Spirit, "that they may rest from their labors, for their deeds follow with them."|
Those who are on earth during this last 3.5 year period during which the beast rules and yet continue to hold fast to the testimony of Jesus, will be martyred by beheading. They may remove our physical head but they can never take away our spiritual "Head", the Lord Jesus Christ. Though we be made physically "headless", we will still bow to Him because He is our Head.
|Rev 20:4 "And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given to them. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of the testimony of Jesus and because of the word of God, and those who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received the mark upon their forehead and upon their hand; and they came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years."|
Rev 20 shows us those who are beheaded because they belong to GOD'S KINGDOM and they will sit on THRONES and will REIGN forever. After the WRATH OF GOD is finished and BABYLON IS DESTROYED, Jesus Christ comes to earth. So we know the timing of Christ's return to the earth to defeat the armies of the world (Rev19:11ff) after which Satan is bound for 1000 years (another timeframe) during which Christ rules for 1000 years with His bride who comes after Him when He returns to earth in Rev19:11ff.
Columnist Cal Thomas writes that only 11% of people who claim to be believers read their Bible daily. The point is that Ignorance of God's Word is tantamount to disobedience to His Word. One cannot know the way of God if one is unsure about the Word and the Will of God. America does not need a new president. America needs the only Man Who can give hope. The times have been uniquely prepared for the message we bring. We must be sure that we are ready to bring that message in a bold and relevant way to the times. Otherwise time will pass us by and opportunity with it. What is our message? Get off the fence. You can't have the best of two worlds. Decide this day WHOM YOU WILL SERVE and Revelation ends that way:"
|Rev 22:11 "Let the one who does wrong, still do wrong; and let the one who is filthy, still be filthy; and let the one who is righteous, still practice righteousness; and let the one who is holy, still keep himself holy."|
Now is the hour of decision
''I think we have lost the old knowledge. Happiness is overrated. In a way life is overrated. We have lost somehow a sense of mystery about us: our purpose, our meaning, our role. Our ancestors believed in two worlds and understood this to be the solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short one. We are the first generation of men that actually expected to find happiness on earth and our search for it has caused such unhappiness. The reason: If you do not believe in another higher world. If you believe only in the flat material world around you. If you believe that this is your only chance at happiness. If this is what you believe then you are not disappointed when the world does not give you a good measure of its riches. You are despairing, the most most wretched, helpless, hopeless condition in which to be. We have the answer to that despair, the only answer, Jesus Christ. Not religion. Not denomination. Not rules and regulations. Not even Christianity but Jesus Christ. Let us resolve to know Him better, present Him and nothing else to a despairing world, pray as never before and when we do anticipate the rumble of revival across America, without which this nation can no longer prevail under the blessing of God."
America, it's time to realize that you cannot have the
best of both worlds
Do you want a kingdom that's going to last?
Or do you want a kingdom that' going to be destroyed?
Do you want to be destroyed?
Or do you want to have all your tears and sorrow and pain and death taken away?
For He Who is coming will come and He is coming shortly.
He Who is coming will come
And He is coming shortly
CHOOSE THIS DAY
WHOM YOU WILL SERVE
Prayer: Father we thank You for Your Word, a sure Word. We thank You for what John saw that day. Amen