PMT 2014-010 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.
In Revelation 14:6–8 we hear an angel proclaim “Babylon’s” destruction: “Then I saw another angel flying in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach to those who dwell on the earth; to every nation, tribe, tongue, and people; saying with a loud voice, ‘Fear God and give glory to Him, for the hour of His judgment has come; and worship Him who made heaven and earth, the sea and springs of water.’ And another angel followed, saying, ‘Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she has made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication.’”
As I argue elsewhere, in Revelation “Babylon” is a metaphor for Jerusalem (just as is Egypt, Rev 11:8).
In Revelation 14:14–16 an angel reaps souls for the Son of Man’s harvest of Israel (Jn 4:35), re-imaging the securing of the 144,000 Jewish converts to Christ from Israel (Rev 7). This is not a judgment scene, for:
(1) This vision occurs immediately after positive statements regarding perseverance of the faithful (Rev 14:12), the heavenly benediction upon them (Rev 14:13a), and the promise of rest from their labors (Rev 14:13b). Since they are thus blessed this fits nicely with this vision speaking of the Son of Man protectively gathering his own.
The Revelation of Jesus Christ (booklet by Ken Gentry)
Brief argument for pre-A.D. 70 date;
shows Revelation is God’s covenant divorce decree against Israel.
Overview of main movements of Revelation.
(2) The “white” color of the cloud upon which the Son of Man sits is not an appropriate image for the storm of God’s judgment. In Revelation judgment phenomena involve thunder, lightning, hail and so forth (4:5; 8:5; 10:3; 11:19; 16:18; 19:6), which are more naturally associated with dark clouds (see the storm clouds rolling ominously across the sky in 6:14).
(3) This harvesting of grain picks up on the earlier positive statement in Revelation 14:4, which declares the “blameless” 144,000 to be the “first fruits.” First fruits harvests are tokens of God’s favor (cp. Lev 23:9–14) so that they become a time of celebration (Dt 16:9ff). (4) Nothing particularly judgmental is stated in this vision, though the following vision involves dramatic images that are indisputably judgmental (vv 17–20).
However, In Rev 14:17–21 John’s shift gears and presents a gruesome, judgment under a vintage image.
In the days of Christ and the apostles, Israel becomes ripe for judgment (Mt 23:31–36; 1Th 2:16). The gruesome action take place “outside the city,” i.e., outside Jerusalem. This corresponds to Christ’s crucifixion “outside” the gate or the city (Heb 13:12–13; Jn 19:17). It also clearly relates the scene to the area surrounding Jerusalem, i.e., the land of Israel. The land of Israel as a Roman province stretched from the Leontes River to Wadi el Arish, a distance of 1,600 furlongs, or about 200 miles (Rev 14:20).
The blood flow to the horses’ bridles seems to poetically describe the blood that covered the lakes and rivers during several dramatic battles between the Romans and the Jews. “But as many of these were repulsed when they were getting ashore as were killed by the darts upon the lake; one might then see the lake all bloody, and full of dead bodies, for not one of them escaped. And a terrible stink . . . as for the shores, they were full of shipwrecks, and of dead bodies all swelled” (Josephus, J.W. 3:10:9; cf. J.W. 4:7:5–6; 6:8:5).
“A Revelation of the Revelation” (6 CDs by Ken Gentry)
This lecture series was designed to introduce the preterist approach to Revelation to those who had never heard of it.
Very helpful for personal study, small group Bible study, or Sunday school classes.