1:3 (NAS) The LORD is slow to anger and great in power, and the LORD will by no means leave the guilty unpunished. This verse is a source of encouragement to those who are victims of great injustice!
1:6 Who can stand before his fierce anger? Who can survive his burning fury? His rage blazes forth like fire, and the mountains crumble to dust in his presence. I never realized how many references there are to God's judgments as "fire," even though in many (most?) cases it doesn't indicate actual fire, but rather a means of purging sin through judgment.
1:7 (NAS) The LORD is good, A stronghold in the day of trouble, and He knows those who take refuge in Him. This reads so much better than NLT that says, "He is close to those who trust in Him."
1:15 Look! A messenger is coming over the mountains with good news [think: Gospel]! He is bringing a message of peace. Celebrate your festivals, O people of Judah, and fulfill all your vows... Who might this be speaking of?
3:1-7 This look at the wickedness in Nineveh is eye-opening. In fact, it seems that this book should have come before Jonah! But one thing for sure, now that we know how God responded to the attitude of repentance of Nineveh and it's king, He truly is a forgiving and merciful God!
8:3-4 Then another angel with a gold incense burner came and stood at the altar. And a great amount of incense was given to him to mix with the prayers of God's people as an offering on the gold altar before the throne. The smoke of the incense, mixed with the prayers of God's holy people, ascended up to God from the altar where the angel had poured them out. One thing is sure as we read... Revelation is obviously symbolic. But have you ever considered your prayers being like incense on the altar of God? In fact, in another passage of Revelation, it says that our prayers are kept in golden bowls on the altar! I surely wish I had more passion and faith about praying. It seems like so much work.
8:10-11 Then the third angel blew his trumpet, and a great star fell from the sky, burning like a torch. It fell on one-third of the rivers and on the springs of water. The name of the star was Bitterness. It made one-third of the water bitter, and many people died from drinking the bitter water. A little fascinating factoid. The name of the star was actually "Wormwood." Did you know that the infamous nuclear city, Chernobyl (Russia) is actually translated "Wormwood"? Many of you may even remember in 86s when there was the accident at Chernobyl that resulted in many deaths. I'm not suggesting that this was the fulfillment of this prophecy, but just that perhaps this is a clue as to what this judgment will look like. By the description, it certainly could be!
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