And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Sion, and with him an hundred forty and four thousand, having his Father's name written in their foreheads. And I heard a voice from heaven, as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of a great thunder: and I heard the voice of harpers harping with their harps: And they sung as it were a new song before the throne, and before the four beasts, and the elders: and no man could learn that song but the hundred and forty and four thousand, which were redeemed from the earth. These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb. And in their mouth was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God. Revelation 14:1-5.

Part II
by Brother Emerson A. Wilson

 

 "Keep Through Thine Own Name"
Let's read Revelation 15:2. And I saw as it were a sea of glass mingled with fire: and them that had gotten the victory over the beast, and over his image, and over his mark, and over the number of his name, stand on the sea of glass... The "sea of glass" throughout the Revelation is the Word of God. The "mingled with fire"--the "fire"--is the Holy Spirit.

Whether the Word of God is symbolized as the sea of glass or as Mount Zion, the mountain of God's truth, Revelation, Chapters 14 and 15 both say that they stood on it. It means the same thing. Revelation 15:3 tells us, And they sing the song of Moses...and the song of the Lamb... Brothers and Sisters, the song of Moses IS the song of deliverance and the song of the Lamb is the song of redemption.

You will notice in Revelation 14:1 that every one of these 144,000, symbolizing The Church, have their Father's name written IN their foreheads. They are a people who have some light and understanding. They have come out; they do not have beast names. Beast names are the many different names of Protestantism. Just as a child bears the likeness and the name of his father, God's children bear His image and His name. Every one of God's children bears His image. God not only wants you to bear His image, but also His name. In John 17:11, Jesus prayed, ...Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are. The Apostle Paul said, For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named. Ephesians 3:14,15. The True Church bears the true title, the Church of God.

Jumping verse two for a moment (we are NOT going to exclude it), let us study something which definitely proves these people had seen Truth, stepped out on it, and were standing. They had an ear to hear, so they heard and obeyed; when they obeyed, they became overcomers. They got victory over the beast, his image, his mark, his number, and his name.

Someone might say, "I see the Church of God. It is born-again men and women wherever they are." What are you going to do with this part of the teaching that talks about The Church having victory over Babylon (false religion)? When you get to the Mount Zion, the Church of God, you are going to find a people who have gotten the victory over the beast, his image, his mark, and the number of his name. Verse 3 talks of a "new song". Whenever it says they sang a new song, it is a song of experience; they had experienced something more than had the saints in the fifth chapter.

Let's read Revelation 14:3. And they sung as it were a new song before the throne, and before the four beasts, and the elders: and no man could learn that song but the hundred and forty and four thousand, which were redeemed from the earth. Now this has nothing to do with being redeemed from sin. When it says that they are redeemed from the earth, it does not mean that they have been caught up to God's Heaven. All you have to do is read the sixth verse to see that this very group is to preach the everlasting Gospel to them who dwell on the earth.

So what are we seeing here? We are seeing a group singing a song before the four beasts and the elders, a song that the four beasts and the elders did not know anything about.

A Song And A New Song
What song did the four beasts and the elders sing? Revelation 5:7-9 tells us. And he came and took the book out of the right hand of him that sat upon the throne. And when he had taken the book, the four beasts and four and twenty elders fell down before the Lamb, having every one of them harps, and golden vials full of odours, which are the prayers of saints. And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation. The four beasts and the four and twenty elders are a picture of the redeemed who have been redeemed from every kindred, tongue, and nation through the blood of Jesus Christ.

Brothers and Sisters, the blood of Jesus Christ redeems us from sin. Now they sang a new song, a song that had never been sung because the blood of bulls and goats could not take away sin. Until Jesus offered His own blood for sin, this song was never sung! It was a song of victory over sin, the flesh, and the devil because of the blood of Jesus Christ.

God has people out in Babylon (false religion) who can sing that first song: "I am redeemed by the blood." They cannot, however, sing this new song of being redeemed from the earth. We have already shown you that Protestantism came out of the minds of men. Revelation 13:11 says, And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth... The highest pinnacle they ever reach is earthly thinking or earthly organizations. Revelation 14:3 talks of people who were God's people. They had been held in the clutches of Protestantism, but they heard the voice of God. They heard the voice of Christ when He said, "Come out of her, my people." They came back to Zion, and they sang a new song.

No man could sing this new song but the 144,000 who were redeemed from the earth. It is a song of experience--you have to have experienced something. They sang a song right before those others which they didn't know anything about, because they had never been in Babylon's bondage. They had never had the experience, knew the enjoyment, or experienced the freedom that comes by leaving those earthly organizations and being redeemed from the earth by the voice of God.

Truth Will Set You Free
We are in a world where people who think anything at all about holiness talk much about the blood and what the blood does for you. Thank God, the blood will redeem you from all sin, but you need to hear the Word of God, or the voice of God, to get you out of a lot of other things that you shouldn't be in after you have been redeemed from sin! So there is not only redemption in the blood, but there is also redemption in The Word. They had an ear, they heard, they obeyed, they had victory over the beast, and they sang about it.

Someone might say, "You are using the word redeemed from the earth." The word redeemed means "to be set free." Jesus said in John 8:32, And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. They heard the voice of God, they heard the truth, and it set them free. Revelation 14:3 says they were "redeemed from the earth." Verse four says they were "redeemed from among men." It means the same thing. It symbolizes men's works, human and earthly organizations which come out of the minds of men and are governed by men. For soul food, all you can get is the sayings of men.

Psalm 62:9 tells us, Surely men of low degree are vanity, and men of high degree are a lie: to be laid in the balance, they are altogether lighter than vanity. That is pretty hard on the fellows who have degrees. Brother, Sister, we can have all the education we can pile into our thimbleful of brains, but we're still just men. We can't get above it. We are still talking about being redeemed from among men. In Matthew 10:17, Jesus said to beware of men because they will deliver you up to the councils. They will set up councils and organizations and put you out of their synagogues. There is no man, however, who can put you out of God's church.

One more Scripture which lets us know that truth will redeem you from among men is found in I Corinthians, the third chapter. Paul, writing to The Church at Corinth, said, For ye are yet carnal: for whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men? For while one saith, I am of Paul; and another, I am of Apollos; are ye not carnal? Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every man? I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase. So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase.

God doesn't intend for you to pin your faith on any man's coattail. Brothers and Sisters, when we get redeemed from among men, we'll quit following "Paul and Apollos" (again, using their names as symbolic of whomever--men or women--that folks follow today). They both were good Church of God preachers; neither of them meant to work division, but the people were still walking as men, still carnal and fleshly. To be redeemed from among men means more than leaving some Babylonian (false doctrine) organization and moving to some geographical location which calls itself The Church of God. When you get to Mount Zion, you get to a place where people have been redeemed from among men. They are not following some man (or woman)--they follow THE LAMB! We may have divided ideas about lots of things, but we'll all walk together if we are all following THE LAMB.

The Word
Still considering the 144,000, let's read Revelation 14:4. These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb. The expression not defiled with women is the symbolic expression that they are chaste and pure people. This does NOT mean a group of individuals who on the one hand refuse to marry, yet on the other hand indulge in ungodly desires/relationships. Again, this is talking about a spiritual condition, not a carnal one. The expression, "not defiled with women" is used throughout the New Testament. In II Corinthians 11:2, Paul said to the Church of God at Corinth, For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ. "Espoused to one husband"--that's Jesus Christ, not Martin Luther, John the Baptist, or any of the modern-day so-called "holy men" that so many follow after. Folks, understand this: there is ONLY ONE to follow: Jesus Christ! So, the Revelation is talking about the purity, or the chasteness, of this group of people on Mount Zion.

We read in Ephesians 5:25-27, Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. This chasteness and separateness comes about through the washing of The Word. The preaching of God's eternal Word, service after service, WILL clean up a church. There are some things in Christian's lives that make God jealous. He gets jealous when you turn your affection to other things in too great a way, when you find pleasure in other things in a greater way than you find pleasure in Him.

Not only are these 144,000 virgins (again, remember, in a spiritual sense), but they also follow the Lamb whithersoever He goeth. Jesus said in John 10:27, My sheep hear my voice...and they follow me. I want to put emphasis on the fact that these are they which follow The LAMB. We have so many people today who hear, but they don't follow. That is why Jesus said, For many are called, but few are chosen. Matthew 22:14. "Many are called"--they hear Christ's voice and know what they ought to do, but they don't follow through. "Few are chosen"--to be His bride because of their unwillingness to HEED what they HEAR. What is the difference between the many called and the few chosen? Many HEAR Christ's call, but few follow. This group in Revelation 14:4 not only heard, but they also followed, and that is the earmark of HIS sheep. Here is a people who are not following the beast, his image, his mark, his number, or his name. My friends, they are wholehearted followers of Christ.

It says, ...These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. Whithersoever takes in a whole world of things. Following the Lamb whithersoever He goeth means to follow Him in His commandments, in His teachings, in His providences, and in His examples. To follow Him whithersoever He goeth means to follow Him truly, without hypocrisy or apostasy. It means to follow Him speedily, truly, undividedly, jealously, humbly, cheerfully, diligently, faithfully and transcendentally. To follow Him transcendentally is to surpass yourself, or to do better tomorrow than you did today.

A High Way
John said, Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not. And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure. I John 3:1,3. The follow The LAMB in purity. The nominal religious world is filled with the idea that you can never be like Christ, that nobody can live that standard, but these are they that follow The LAMB. Everyone who has this hope in himself, of seeing Jesus as He is one of these days, purifies himself even as He, Christ, is pure. When the Scripture syas that they follow Him withersoever He goes, it is talking about purity.
I thank God for the LAMB of God that takes away the sin of the world. Not only the guilt of sin, but also the strength of sin, whereby sin cannot have dominion over us!

John tells us in Revelation 14:5, And in their mouth was found no guile... That means, there was found no sin, no deception, no duplicity. They are without fault before the throne of God. Now you can't live without people finding fault, but you can live without fault before the throne of God. People may misjudge you. You can be trying to do good, and they say you are causing trouble; but there is One Who knows your heart. He not only sees what you are doing, but He also sees what you are trying to do. In other words, He not only knows the deeds you do, He knows the intent you mean of the deeds you do. You can live without fault before the throne of God.

Now someone might say, "Brother Wilson, that makes it too high." Well, you don't know how high Mount Zion is. You are just beginning now to get a little glimpse of what Isaiah said in the second chapter: ...the mountain of the Lord's house shall be established in the top of the mountains... Hebrews 12:22 says, But ye are come unto mount Sion... That means you have done some traveling.

The Church is in the top of the mountain. A lot of people like to think that she lives at the foothills. There are a lot of people who can't stand the mountain air; they only get up so high in Christian living. Mount Zion is in the top of the mountain, and you won't have a lot of trouble with caterpillars, locusts, and a lot of the other plagues. Some things can't live at such a high altitude.

There are rats overseas--large ones and very poisonous. If they bite you, you die in a very short time. During the Second World War, a pilot took off in his fighter plane. He had left some food back in the baggage compartment, and one of those rats got in there. He had not been long up in the air until he heard a gnawing back of the seat board. He knew if it ever got through and bit him, he was done for. He didn't know what to do: turn back and try to find a place to land, or go on. He didn't know if he had time to even try to go back.

All at once, he remembered that rats can't live in a high atmosphere; so he just shot the nose of the plane right straight up. It was only about a minute, then the gnawing sound stopped. Do you get the message?? Now, you know: all those things that gnaw at you and are such nuisances in your life? Get up into a little higher atmosphere!!

The Value Of Bearing His Reproach
In the 24th verse of Jude we find, Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy. This is what God can do for you, and this group of people in Revelation 14 found it out. These are they who follow The LAMB whithersoever He goeth. Withsoever lets us know that there is no half-heartedness in their experience.

There is a great tempation today to follow Christ as long as the path is not too difficult. When it gets a bit hard or a bit too difficult, when it infringes on that time which we have alloted to something of fleshly pleasure, when it causes us to be unpopular amongst our friends--people begin to shrink back. We have people today who follow the Lord some way and even long ways, but not whithersoever. They hear His voice, but they don't follow. People are tempted to follow if the difficulties are not too great, but to follow where difficulty, danger, disgrace, or even death awaits, people shrink from it.

When the Scripture said that they follow The LAMB whithersoever He goeth, it means there was NO conformity to the world! They were redeemed FROM AMONG men. These had courage to be singular: they had actually come out from among men and were separate. It did not make any difference what other people in the congregation did. They had it settled to follow The LAMB whithersoever. For that reason, God was glad to be called their Father, and they had the Father's name written IN their foreheads.

Just putting it down plainly, these went unto Christ without the camp, bearing His reproach. Let us go forth therefore unto him without the camp, bearing his reproach. Hebrews 13:13. Let us go unto Him, without the camp, bearing His reproach. Not only should we bear His reproach, but we also need to be like Moses--and even greater than Moses. He esteemed the reproach of Christ greater than the treasures of Egypt, because he had respect unto the recompense of reward. He knew there was an eternity and judgment out ahead.

I want to tell you, if you start living in the light of eternity, you will make a lot of decisions differently than you are making them now. Many people think the things of this earth are too much to give up for Christ. When you put them ALL up against the light of eternity, however, their value disappears. Bearing the reproach of Christ will be the most valuable thing there is at the Judgment Day. Oh yes, it will!

They were not only willing to bear the reproach of Christ, but they were also happy about it. John first heard the voice of Christ, then the voice of God, and then he heard harpers harping. Harpers harping on their harps is a symbol of beautiful music, or a symbol of a happy people expressing themselves. John heard the voices of harpers harping on harps.

In the 137th Psalm we read of literal Israel when they were carried away into Babylonian captivity. They hung their harps on the willows as they went into Babylon. While they were there, the Babylonians wanted to make fun of them, so they asked them to sing some of the songs of Zion. The Israelites replied, "How shall we sing the Lord's song in a strange land?" (verse 4) The songs of Zion are songs of experience and songs of freedom. How can you sing of freedom while you are in bondage?

They refused to sing, but God miraculously opened up the way for them to come out. When they came out, they picked up their harps and began singing. Isaiah tells of them in Chapter 35, verse 10: And the ransomed of the Lord shall return, and come to Zion with songs and everlasting joy upon their heads: they shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away. It is a song of experience. You can go to Babylon (false religion) and be catechized, but you can't learn this song.

When he said, "these are they", he was speaking about you and me who have been redeemed. We know the depth of sin and sorrow from which we were saved. Hallelujah! We know the height of holiness, joy, and freedom to which we have been raised. Glory to God! We know the love by which and the purpose for which God lifted us out of the quagmire of sin and brought us freedom from the many bondages of human religion. Every one who is truly saved knows the terribleness of conviction and the joy of pardon. Glory to The LAMB that was slain! Then, we also know the blessedness of being led of the Lord. It is a song of experience.

The Harvest Is Ripe
Revelation 14:4 tells us that these are ...the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb. The firstfruits are the first of the crop which is brought in. The firstfruits are representative of the whole harvest. The rest of the harvest will be just as the firstfruits are. The firstfruits were given to God. James 1:18 tells us, ...that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures. The "we" it is referring to there are Christians, true followers of Jesus Christ. What does it mean in Revelation 14:4 that these are the firstfruits? This speaks of the firstfruits of those coming out of Babylon, and those who were freed from apostasy.

First of all, the firstfruits are an assurance of a harvest. In verse 15, Jesus said, Thrust in thy sickle, and reap...for the harvest of the earth is ripe.As sure as there are men and women sitting under the sound of the Gospel who have been redeemed by the blood and from the earth, who are enjoying the livelihood of Mount Zion and the freedom of being held under the power of the true vicars of the church, the Word and the Spirit, that is an assurance that there is more of a harvest out there. There are other men and women just as honest as you and I. So the firstfruits mean assurance of a harvest. Secondly, the firstfruits mean evidence of what kind of harvest it will be. The rest of the harvest will be just like the firstfruits. It is evidence, proof, and pattern.

Last, but not least, the firstfruits are inspiration for you and me to work for a larger and fuller return. Let's not be satisfied with the firstfruits. Never let the devil make you feel that the harvest has been brought in. How are they ever going to be brought in? Just as they were, by hearing the voice of God and the voice of Jesus Christ. They need to hear the truth of God's Word. They need someone who will expose the condition they are in. You see, they are deceived. Babylon has told those people that they are all the church. Babylon's own message is that God has two churches: one mystical and one visible. They teach that God makes you a member of the mystical, and man makes you a member of the visible. Let me tell you, God has ONLY ONE CHURCH: the Body of Christ. He chose her name, her doctrine, and He chooses who is going to be in it. You cannot even get in without an invitation.

Someone might question, "How do you get an invitation?" When the Word of God reaches you, shows you your true condition, and stirs an anxiety in your heart to be what God wants you to be, that is your invitation. When you are ready, God is ready and waiting. Many people are deceived by waiting for some certain feeling or some certain impression. You need to understand how God moves.

Today, if you will hear His voice, harden not your heart. You receive the invitation when the truth reaches you and shows you your condition: lost and undone, in need of a Savior. It also shows you the way out, and the time is NOW. Today is the day of salvation. If you will hear His voice, harden not your heart.

 


JCSM's Top 1000 Christian Sites - Free Traffic Sharing Service!