May 15 2022
Today, Sunday May 15
The Great Earthquake
“Now after the three-and-a-half days the breath of life from God entered them, and they stood on their feet, and great fear fell on those who saw them. And they heard a loud voice from heaven saying to them, "Come up here." And they ascended to heaven in a cloud, and their enemies saw them. In the same hour there was a great earthquake, and a tenth of the city fell. In the earthquake seven thousand people were killed, and the rest were afraid and gave glory to the God of heaven. The second woe is past. Behold, the third woe is coming quickly.”
There is probably nothing that gets all our attention like an earthquake. In the book of Revelation there are at least three great earthquakes. We read about one right here in chapter 11. Just before this earthquake happens the two witnesses miraculously come back to life as the whole world is watching. For three and a half days the enemies of God, and a demon possessed world, has been having a Satanic Christmas because of the death of these two men. But they are struck with great fear as they watch them slowly ascend into heaven in a cloud.
Remember when Jesus ascended into heaven from the Mt. of Olives in Acts 1:9-11, His friends saw Him and were struck with awe and wonder. Then two angels assured them that “this same Jesus will come again as you have seen Him go into heaven”. But here when the enemies of the two witnesses view this scene, they experience great fear.
With the attention of the world centered around this miraculous event something else takes place! A great earthquake happens that causes a tenth of the City of Jerusalem to collapse, and kills over seven thousand people! Fear upon fear happens as they scriptures point out that they are afraid. For the moment God has their attention and they give glory to the God of heaven.
Interestingly, they might have acknowledged the power and might of the God of heaven, but they still did not repent! I’ll never forget the great earthquake of 7.0 magnitude that hit Haiti on January 12, 2010. Over 220,000 people were killed. I had the opportunity to go there just a few days after the earthquake with a medical and relief team. It was one of the most heartbreaking things that I have ever experienced in my life. Dead bodies were still laying in the streets and in the buildings. You could smell death everywhere. The masses of people were still wandering around in shock and disbelief. As the tremors continued each day, the people were afraid to go into buildings or even into their houses, if they had survived the earthquake.
I’ll never forget at night, as we slept on a roof top, we could hear thousands of voices singing Gospel songs from every direction! God definitely had their attention! And for a while, just like after 911 in America, the churches were filled up!
It’s amazing that people in a crisis will give glory to the God of heaven, meaning that they acknowledge Him and His might and power and yet they are not still willing to repent and turn from their sins! So often we are sorry that we got caught, and are suffering some consequences for our sins, but we are not really sorry for our sin! That appears to be what happens here in Revelation 11 as the second woe is past and the third woe is about to begin with the sounding of the seventh trumpet that will release the seven bowls of God’s wrath!
Remember when Jesus died on the cross and the veil of the temple was torn into two parts, the scriptures say that at the same time there was an earthquake (Matthew 27:51), and the dead bodies of saint arose and walked around the city of Jerusalem. Pretty big attention getter. Then three days later, on Sunday morning, when the two Mary’s went to the tomb of Jesus it says, “And behold, there was a great earthquake and the stone was rolled away!” (Matthew 28:2). The Roman guards were struck with fear, but the women were invited in to see the empty tomb!
My friend, what earthquake is the Lord allowing in your life to get your attention? Don’t make the mistake of just experiencing fear and simply acknowledging God! The Lord is calling you to repentance and eternal life.