God is Ready, are You?
“Another angel, a second, followed, saying, "Fallen, fallen is Babylon the great, she who made all nations drink the wine of the passion of her sexual immorality."”
Revelation 14:8 ESV
What is the message of the Second Angel of Revelation 14:8? What is Babylon and what does it mean that it has fallen? What does it mean for the people of God to come out of her? The answers to these questions lie at the very heart of redemption's purposes. The heritage of the Adventist church, the very nature of its existence is inseparably tied to the message of this Angel. If we would but embrace it, life as we know it would take on infinitely more meaning. Because we have failed to grasp the significance of this message we have wandered as a church accomplishing little worthy of our calling.
Babylon as we have established represents the pride of man distorting and maligning the character of God. The Bible's longest time prophecy revealed in Daniel chapters 7-9 points to a time when the power of Babylon will be broken. This prophecy speaks of a time when God's character will once again shine in its fullness throughout the earth. The cleansing of the sanctuary at the end of the 2300 years points to a time when God's vindication, man's redemption, and evil's demise will take place. Adventism was born to herald this most precious revelation, to reveal that the end of all things is at hand.
If this is all true then the question remains, why are we still here 150 years later? If Babylon has fallen then why does its power only appear to grow? The course of the ungodly seems to move steadily forward and the church appears to be sleeping at best and denying the faith at worst. What are we missing? Are we waiting for the powers of evil to align themselves so that the end can come, what is the big hold up?
Perhaps the answer lies closer to home than we think. When Israel was delivered from Egypt it was not long before God brought them to the boarders of the promised land. It was God's intention after a short period of preparation to bestow the promise of Canaan upon his beloved people, but something went desperately wrong. Ten of the twelve spies sent to investigate the land of promise returned with a bad report. Unbelief and fear gripped the hearts of the Hebrews and they failed to receive the gift their Heavenly Father longed to bestow upon them. As a result decades of wandering ensued and the privilege of entering the land fell to another generation.
Is it possible that the message of the 2nd angel is indeed true, but God's people have failed to receive the promise due to a lack of faith? Has time run out on Babylon but a God of mercy continues to hold back its destruction for the sake of souls still hanging in the balance? Has the message intended to gather the faithful stumbled? Is it possible that the very ones commissioned to call God's people apart have themselves set their affections upon the earthly prosperity Babylon promises?
Since the passing of time in 1844 each generation of God's people have been within reach of the promise land. When the everlasting gospel will be preached in power and clarity to the entire earth then the end will come. God stands ready and willing to pour out the latter rain to complete the work he started more than a hundred years ago. A foundation has been laid from which God's true character can be revealed and a beacon can be lit which will lead God's children out of Babylon's confusion. The Angel of revelation 18 is prepared to fly and as never before lighten the earth with the glory of God and mercy's final appeal.
The antediluvian world came to an end when the ark was complete. When the way of escape was prepared and mercy's cry was able to be given in distinct tones the judgement of evil ensued. As it was in the days of Noah so it will be before the Son of Man returns. We have been commissioned to both call people out of delusion and into the truth. The Seventh-day Adventist Church represents a body of revelations which rightly understood have the power to preserve a true knowledge of God amidst the intense delusions which will envelope the world in the last days of earth's history. Our church has been ordained by God as a haven of safety, an ark which will carry God's people safely through the demise of evil.
Generation after generation, however, has failed to enter into the precious promises bound up in the three angels messages. As a result, like the Hebrews, generations have wandered each passing heaven's most precious privilege to the next generation.
We find ourselves many generations removed from those first commissioned with this message. Like the Israelites taken captive to Babylon we have grown so comfortable within its walls that we stand in danger of missing the hour of our own deliverance and the privilege of sounding mercy's final cry. But it is not too late, God is still willing and able to lead us out and establish in our midst a haven of safety, an ark for the faithful to weather the storm in. Scripture foretold the time when all of God's children would fall asleep, but to each generation the opportunity to awake is extended.
The message of the second angel is faithful. Babylon has fallen but it exists on borrowed time until a generation stands up and grasps the promises of God. Our Heavenly Father would have us rise up by faith and own the prophetic heritage to which we have been called. Scripture reveals that darkness only prevails because those entrusted with the light keep silent. We are the only variable which remains, our choice to believe has the power to usher in the end. Evil's day has passed and the dawn of truth and light is seeking an entrance. Victory is ours for the taking if we will by faith allow God to finish the work he started in us and the work he desires to accomplish through us.
Still Seeking His Face,