#199 (9/23/18)

Source of material:  Rev. B.R. Hicks

Please read Revelation 18:10-11 & 15-20.  Here John is describing a scene that manifests two reactions from two types of people.  Judgments are falling on the earthly Jerusalem; one reaction comes from the merchants and the other comes from the prophets and apostles in heaven.  The merchants are weeping and wailing in earthly sorrow, the prophets and apostles are rejoicing in godly sorrow.  This concomitant event solicits opposite reactions from two very different groups.  Jerusalem is being judged by the Almighty God for teaching the world to reject the Son of God, the Messiah, and for teaching idolatry to the nations.  Yet, some react in joy, others in horror and tears.  Everyone and everything is known by its fruit.  Whatever fruit is produced by a mature tree is what identifies the tree.  An apple (fruit) is produced by an apple tree.  A lemon is produced by a lemon tree, etc.  The fruit of Jerusalem was idolatry.  The judgments of God are righteous and just.  The LORD takes the fruit and puts them into the winepress of heaven.  The cups are either filled with judgments or blessings, depending on the fruit in the winepress.  In Jerusalem's case, her idolatry (fruit) was put in to the winepress of God and judgments were the result.  He took her own fruit and poured it back on her in judgments.  Notice those in heaven were RE-joicing; they had already "joyed" over God's Judgments.  

 Judgments reveal sin and the deception of it.  Judgments also reveal the frailty of man and the "temporalness" of his vaporous life.  When the apostles and prophet had their turn on the stage of this world, they learned the effects of judgments on their "earth".  Judgment led them to contrition and repentance, turning their sinful judgments in to satisfying blessings.  They experienced personal repentance and its positive effects.  Their personal experience told them that judgments recalibrate, readjust, and restore order back to a godly relationship with the LORD.  They knew that His righteous judgments reveal attachments to sin and idolatry.  When the LORD poured out his wrath on Jerusalem, this caused joy and praise on their part because they knew the city would be changed for the good.  

Please read Hebrews 12:6.  God loves His natural and spiritual Bride.  It is His responsibility to cause judgment on both to reveal the sinful attachments that deceive the heart.  Judgments can cause two reactions:  1. repentance 2. wailing, weeping, and blaming.  Speaking of the first, He desires an honest assessment which leads to repentance.  "Where am I wrong?"  "How can I fix this?"  "What do You want me to do?"  After repentance by the Blood, Fire, and Water, comes restoration and joy. Godly sorrow leads to repentance. 

Read verse 19 in chapter 18 again (Revelation).  The merchants were "made rich" by Jerusalem.  Their's was an earthly sorrow because they suffered loss.  God touched their possessions.  They weren't interested in repenting; they were angry because God touched their pleasure.  Godly sorrow over the judgments of God sets everyone free from the attachments of the heart to idolatry and sin.