"Then I saw another angel flying directly overhead, with an eternal gospel to proclaim to those who dwell on earth, to every nation and tribe and language and people."
This passage is the only time Scripture describes the gospel as eternal. The NT does describe much as eternal; for example, life, fire, punishment, dwellings, God, weight, comfort, dominion, glory, salvation, judgment, redemption, inheritance, and kingdom. Eternal life is the most common usage. But the first use of eternal is a warning against sin in Matthew 18:8-9. "If your hand or your foot causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life crippled or lame than with two hands or two feet to be thrown into the eternal fire. And if your eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life with one eye than with two eyes to be thrown into the hell of fire." Jesus instructs us to view the consequences of sin as so horrible it would be better to enter eternal life physically maimed than receive eternal destruction physically whole. The use of eternal to describe fire, punishment, and destruction are its second most common use.
The following verse (Revelation 14:7), says "And he said with a loud voice, 'Fear God and give him glory, because the hour of his judgment has come, and worship him who made heaven and earth, the sea and the springs of water.'” Just as we see everywhere in Scripture, the Gospel of forgiveness and salvation from God through Jesus the Messiah is Good News because without it man faces the just judgment and wrath of God. Therefore, we are to fear, glorify, and worship Him because of who He is and what He does.
Do we diminish the value of the Gospel by not presenting the fullness of God's love and wrath? Do unbelievers not understand eternal salvation because we do not present eternal destruction?
Holy God and Father, eternity is Yours. You alone are capable of being a just judge. Jesus, thank You for coming into the world not to judge but to save. Holy Spirit, please prompt and encourage us to proclaim the complete eternal Good News.
"From him shall come the cornerstone, from him the tent peg, from him the battle bow, from him every ruler—all of them together."
This promise fascinates me. Look at what comes from the LORD: the cornerstone, the tent peg, the battle bow, and every ruler. I know about the cornerstone from much of Scripture but uniquely in Isaiah 28:16, "I am the one who has laid as a foundation in Zion, a stone, a tested stone, a precious cornerstone, of a sure foundation." I also know about the battle bow and every ruler. Since God is the defender of His children, the battle bow as a weapon is an appropriate depiction of Him. 2 Chronicles 20:15-17 says "The battle is not yours but God's...you will not need to fight in this battle. Stand firm, hold your positions, and see the salvation of the LORD on your behalf." I know in Jesus, the cornerstone, the battle is already won. He also provides every ruler. Romans 13:1 says "There is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God." I also know each authority raised up by God is under the rule of the authority, the King of kings.
But what about the tent peg? Why is it essential for me to know He provides the tent peg? In Ezra 9:7, the Hebrew word for tent peg is translated as "secure hold.” "But now for a brief moment favor has been shown by the LORD our God, to leave us a remnant and to give us a secure hold within his holy place." The remnant has a "tent peg" within His holy place. Doesn't that remind you of Hebrews 6:19, "We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner place behind the curtain."
He is our secure place whether as a firm foundation, our defender, our righteous ruler or the tent peg that holds us secure in His holy place.
Father, forgive me for looking for security in anything or anyone but You. Thank You for knowing what I need before I ask. I pray for my soul to be settled and at peace in the security of Your hand.