Today’s passage: Revelation 11:1-14
- The Lord reveals the coming of two witnesses who will prophesy for 3.5 years (42 months/1,260 days). These prophets will be invincible until their prophesying work is completed, then they will killed by the “beast that rises from the bottomless pit” (likely the Antichrist – 2 Thessalonians 2:1-4).
- The death of these prophets will be celebrated around the world with parties and the exchanging of gifts (a spontaneous global holiday)!
- But the celebration will be cut off when the prophets are risen from the dead by God and their prophecies bolstered by God’s calling them to heaven and bringing judgment through an earthquake in Jerusalem (the “great city” of verse 8 is Jerusalem).
Questions to consider:
- There are many understandings/interpretations of what is happening in this passage and who all these characters are. Why do you think that is? Why might it make sense (for instance) to interpret the fire coming out of the mouths of the prophets to be symbolic of God’s Word and yet to interpret the length of time (42 months/1,260 days) to be a literal period of time? How does this showcase the challenge of reading apocalyptic literature in the Scripture? How many possibilities are there?
- What things can we be sure of from reading this text? What do God’s people appear to be doing? What does Satan, the Antichrist, and the world appear to be doing in response? Who holds the true power? Why is it right for the world to be terrified and give glory to God?
- How does the death, resurrection and ascension of these witnesses serve as a model and comfort to Christians even today? What will come of all those who put their faith in Christ and obey His command to make disciples?