Terrible but good


Revelation 15:3–4 (ESV): 3 And they sing the song of Moses, the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying, “Great and amazing are your deeds, O Lord God the Almighty! Just and true are your ways, O King of the nations! 4 Who will not fear, O Lord, and glorify your name? For you alone are holy. All nations will come and worship you, for your righteous acts have been revealed.”


Revelation 14 begins with the 144,000 now in Heaven with the Lamb, who is standing. Three angels then fly overhead with messages of warning for the inhabitants of the earth.

Then, in Revelation 14:14 we see one who would appear to be Jesus?, who looks like a son of man, seated on the cloud with a golden crown on his head and a sharp sickle in his hand. It is time to harvest the earth.

In Revelation 15, seven angels come with seven plagues which are the last and which consummate God’s wrath. But before the first plague is poured out, we see all those who resisted the beast and its image, but instead remained faithful to Christ standing beside the sea of glass with harps of God in their hands.

They sing the song of our highlighted text.


Truly, God’s acts are amazing. Whether you think of Creation, of Calvary, of God’s dealings with humanity between those events or since, we must say that God’s ways are much higher than our ways. God deserves all our glory and praise.

But at the end of time, as God proves himself holy and sovereign and carries out judgment on sinful humanity, surely we will glorify God – we must glorify him – for He will prove himself much greater, wiser, and holier than we.

I am reminded of the line in C.S. Lewis’ allegory, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe in which the children quiz one of Narnia’s creatures about Aslan, the lion who represents Christ. The creature describes Aslan with terrifying imagery. The children are afraid and seek reassurance. Is Aslan good? Yes, the creature assures him, though Aslan is terrible, fearsome to behold and mighty in his acts, Aslan is very, very good.


Heavenly Father, thank you for your great grace that redeems us from sin, adopts us into your family, and prepares us for eternity. May I always approach you with reverence and gratitude, assured of your goodness and love. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

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