Three Angels' Messages Part 1

by Pastor John Anderson

Welcome to this new blog, which will be featuring the Three Angels’ Messages! Thank you for taking the time to read, ponder and pray about these important topics. They constitute God’s last appeal to Planet Earth before He brings an end to sin. At the Mentone Seventh-day Adventist Church, we have incorporated these vital messages into our mission statement, in which we empower our members to proclaim the Three Angels’ Messages with the world. It is our hope and prayer that through this blog you will be able to understand and be prepared to share these messages with “your world.” More than that, we hope that you will be inspired to dig deeper into the Word of God and know for yourself what they mean and how they apply to your life; that you will, as the Prophet John did, “eat the scroll” and digest the Word of truth, so that through the process of spiritual metabolism, the principles of God’s kingdom become a part of you. From week to week we will be sharing information and insights into these three crucial messages. Let’s begin!

What are the “Three Angels’ Messages”? They are messages that are found in the heart of the book of Revelation, within the 14th chapter. But isn’t the book of Revelation, as some people say, a “sealed book,” and not intended to be understood? No, in fact the very name of the book “Revelation” means “unveiling.” It is by definition something “revealed.”
Some times we hear of Revelation being called the Apocalypse. That is because the word in the original is apocalypse, built on the root calypse, which means “covering” and the prefix apo, which means “from” or “away” (compare “apogee,” the farthest distance from center for an object in orbit) Hence, an apocalypse is the removal of a covering, a “revelation.” In Genesis 8:13, following the Flood, we read that “Noah removed the covering of the ark.” In the Greek translation of the Old Testament, the Septuagint (sometimes abbreviated as the LXX), you will find that the phrase “removed the covering” is expressed by the term apocalypto, the verb form of apocalypse. That’s exactly what Noah did; he “removed the covering.” Our word “discover” (dis {remove} + cover) comes very close to conveying the meaning of the term.
If you changed the prefix apo to eu, which means “good” (as in “eulogy,” literally “good word”), you would have the word which describes a type of tree which makes a “good covering” or makes “good shade,” a eucalyptus tree.
So, the book of Revelation is indeed an apocalypse, a “revealing.” God is preparing to “uncover” truth, allowing you to “discover” a deeper appreciation of His love and his plan. As such, the book of Revelation cannot be a sealed book. In fact, the very first verses inform us, “Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written in it.” Revelation 1:3. Revelation is not closed up; on the contrary, a specific blessing is conferred on the one who reads or hears and applies the words of this prophecy. It is a book which is meant to be understood! More than that, in the closing chapter of the book, as John is ready to complete the writing, he is specifically commanded, “Do not seal the words of the prophecy of this book, for the time is at hand.” Revelation 22:10.
But, as some teach, isn’t the book of Revelation intended only for the church following the rapture? No, John was told to, “Write the things which you have seen, and the things which are, and the things which will take place after this.” Revelation 1:19. In other words, the subject matter of the book of Revelation concerns things which stretch from John’s day to ours; from the first advent (the “things which are”) all the way through to the second advent and beyond. Think what a great coup the devil could pull off if he could persuade people that one of the most important books in all the Bible was either closed up and not intelligible, or was not relevant to today’s world! That would be quite an accomplishment, in a very evil sense. But for many people, he has done just that!
Some might debate which was the most significant event contributing to the successful completion of World War II. Was it the daring and desperate rescue at Dunkirk? Was it the victory at Midway? Was it the Battle of the Bulge? Could it have been the triumph following “D-Day”? Actually, a strong argument can be made that the single most important factor in the Allied cause was not something that occurred on a battlefield at all, but what took place in a compound in Bletchley Park, in Buckinghamshire, England. That was where Allied agents worked to decipher messages sent by use of the Enigma Machine, the encoding device used by the Nazis to send out important communications.
Before the war began, Polish forces obtained one of these machines and on July 25 of 1939, the Polish Cipher Bureau shared this information with British and French forces. Throughout the war they had the distinct advantage of being able to intercept and understand the messages. The information gained this way was given the name “Ultra.” Following the war, Winston Churchill told King George IV of England, “It was thanks to Ultra that we won the war.” The Germans were dumbfounded when they learned their messages had been intercepted throughout the conflict. A fascinating story!
God has given information concerning the war between Christ and Satan, much of it being in the book of Revelation, much of it given through symbols. In the very first verse of that book we are told that this was God’s intention. “The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him to show His servants--things which must shortly take place. And He sent and signified it by His angel to His servant John.” Revelation 1:1. In Greek, the word “signified” is a word which contains the root of our word “semaphore,” which means to “convey by signs.” Indeed, much of the information is given just that way. Notice that God gave this Revelation “to show” His servants. Throughout the book John then relates the things he “saw.” It was an audio and a video presentation.
While symbols and codes are used to convey this information, through the study of the Scriptures and the enlightenment of the Holy Spirit the information can be made understandable; it can be deciphered. The code can be broken. In fact, God invites us to study these messages so that we can know about His plan, what we can expect in the future and most importantly, how to prepare for it. However, the Bible makes it clear that only the “wise” will understand. Daniel 12:10. This is a message given to “His servants,” that is, those who love and serve Him; those who have given their hearts to Him in sincere humility. If we comply with His requirement, we can be assured that wisdom will be given to us to understand. Please join us from week to week as we continue to delve into God’s last appeal of love, the Three Angels’ Messages!

1 Comment

Jon - May 6th, 2022 at 10:21pm

Beautiful introduction to the study of Revelation. Excellent points. I really appreciate the lessons on the root words. Why haven’t I heard about this blog before? I’m glad I stumbled across it. Looking forward to reading each post and catching up.