We saw in chapter 14 the warning of eternal judgment that would fall on all those who rejected God, and instead took the mark of the beast. And like I said earlier, there are those who really get upset at this idea of eternal judgment.
But as we saw in Revelation 9, there is a reason that it is eternal. The reason? There comes a point in people’s hearts where they reach the point of no return. They have so hardened their hearts, that no matter what judgment falls, no matter how painful it is, they simply refuse to repent. Instead, they simply curse God more and more.
And that’s exactly what we see in this chapter. Here we see the wrath of God being poured out in full strength. And whereas there had been limits in the seal judgments (one-fourth) and in the trumpet judgments (one-third), there are no limits now. Instead, the whole world is affected.
All the people who have the mark of the beast are covered with painful sores. (2)
The sea turns to blood and every living thing in it dies. (3)
The rivers and springs of water all turn to blood because of the blood that they themselves shed in killing God’s people. (4-7)
The protections that we have to keep the sun from harming us are stripped away and people are burned by its intense heat. (8)
The people’s response?
They were seared by the intense heat, and they cursed the name of God, who had control over these plagues but they refused to repent and glorify him. (9)
“Surely if these judgments keep up, they will repent, though, right?”
The whole world is thrown into darkness as Egypt once was. The people are are in total agony because of their pains and sores. (10-11a)
But they refused to repent of what they had done. (11b)
“Yes, but surely, they can’t keep holding out like this, can they? They must eventually come to the point where they will repent, right? Nobody could possibly be that stubborn not to repent.”
The Euphrates River is dried up, and with that barrier out of the way, now all the kings of the East come together for one last war against God. (12)
Evil spirits come performing miraculous signs, trying to give the kings of the earth hope that they will be able to stand against God. They gather at Armageddon, and the final bowl of wrath is poured out.
Lightnings, rumblings, peals of thunder and the worst earthquake in the world’s history hits the earth.
The cities of the nations collapse and this empire that stood against God is given the full fury of His wrath. Islands sink. Mountains fall. Huge hailstones fall to the earth crushing men. (20-21)
The result? Repentance?
And they cursed God on account of the hail, because the plague was so terrible. (21)
What’s my point? There can be no escape from hell without repentance. But all that we see from this chapter is that when people harden their hearts, there comes a point of no return. And when they go to hell, they have definitely reached that point. Even if were theoretically possible for a person to repent in hell and escape, no one ever will.
So if you’ve been rejecting God to this point, soften your heart now before it’s too late. God has no desire to send you to hell.
He sent his Son to die for you so that you wouldn’t have to go to hell.
And now he says,
Do I take any pleasure in the death of the wicked…Rather, am I not pleased when they turn from their ways and live…Repent and live. (Ezekiel 18:23, 32)