While the smoke from God’s judgment in total destruction of the great prostitute and the great city Babylon was still rising, visible from far away, a celebration begins in heaven as witnessed by John in his vision.
We saw in the last chapter how Babylon’s destruction looked on earth to the merchants who became rich selling to the lurid sinfulness of Babylon, and how they all mourned over what they had lost.
Contrast now how all of this looks to God’s kingdom of saints in heaven:
“After this I heard what seemed to be the loud voice of a great multitude in heaven, crying out, ‘Hallelujah! Salvation and glory and power belong to our God, for his judgments are true and just; for he has judged the great prostitute who corrupted the earth with her immorality, and has avenged on her the blood of his servants.’ Once more they cried out, ‘Hallelujah! The smoke from her goes up forever and ever.’” (Rev 19:1-3).
Ah, the celebration in heaven has only just begun!
“And the twenty-four elders and the four living creatures fell down and worshiped God who was seated on the throne, saying, ‘Amen. Hallelujah!’ And from the throne came a voice saying, ‘Praise our God, all you servants, you who fear him, small and great’” (Rev 19:4-5).
Instantly the praises begin in heaven:
“Then I heard what seemed to be the voice of a great multitude, like the roar of many waters and like the sound of many peals of thunder, crying out, ‘Hallelujah! For the Lord our God the Almighty reigns. Let us rejoice and exult and give him the glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and his Bride has made herself ready; it was granted her to clothe herself with fine linen, bright and pure’ – for the fine linen is the righteous deeds of the saints” (Rev 19:6-8).
This is no flash mob. This is nothing less than the marriage of Jesus and his church of believers! The angel showing all of this to John in his vision interjects for clarity:
“And the angel said to me, ‘Write this: Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb.’ And he said to me, ‘These are the true words of God.’ Then I fell down at his feet to worship him, but he said to me, ‘You must not do that! I am a fellow servant with you and your brothers who hold to the testimony of Jesus. Worship God.’ For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy” (Rev 19:9-10):
- Grasp tightly the testimony of Jesus;
- Worship God;
- Claim Jesus as the true source of prophecy;
- Get invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb.
This is perfect unity with the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit!
Hurry back for the contrast of this beautiful wedding to the actions of the white horse that follow.