Revelation Chapter 9:20
Revelation 9:20 – But the rest of mankind, who were not killed by these plagues, did not repent of the works of their hands…
God sent fiery serpents to judge Israel, as discussed in the last section. Those who repented lived and God healed, but those who did not repent died:
Numbers 21:6-9 – So the LORD sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people; and many of the people of Israel died. Therefore the people came to Moses, and said, “We have sinned, for we have spoken against the LORD and against you; pray to the LORD that He take away the serpents from us.” So Moses prayed for the people. Then the LORD said to Moses, “Make a fiery serpent, and set it on a pole; and it shall be that everyone who is bitten, when he looks at it, shall live.” So Moses made a bronze serpent, and put it on a pole; and so it was, if a serpent had bitten anyone, when he looked at the bronze serpent, he lived.
Those who get struck in torment by the serpent-like tails of the 200 million horses continue to refuse to repent toward God like Israel. The “Sheep and Goat Judgment” in Matthew 25:31-46 shows that all the unrepentant people in the world will die at the end of the Tribulation because they will reject the “Great Physician” who can heal them of the plagues of judgment for their sin and give them eternal life, if only they would repent and turn toward Him:
John 3:14-19 – And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. “He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.
Unrepentant hearts of those who reject Christ will become hardened, even after experiencing the awful plagues of fire, smoke, and brimstone that destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah, and snake bites like those that afflicted Israel in the wilderness. Their hearts will become hardened like Pharaoh when he refused to let the Hebrews go even after he witnessed the miracle of the sorcerers’ snakes being eaten by Aaron’s snake:
Exodus 7:11-13 – But Pharaoh also called the wise men and the sorcerers; so the magicians of Egypt, they also did in like manner with their enchantments. For every man threw down his rod, and they became serpents. But Aaron’s rod swallowed up their rods. And Pharaoh’s heart grew hard, and he did not heed them, as the LORD had said.
The people plagued by the horsemen and horses in the sixth Trumpet judgment will refuse to repent of idolatry. Similarly, God warned Judah that they would be judged by horsemen and horses for their idolatry like the northern kingdom:
Ezekiel 23:23-26 – The Babylonians, all the Chaldeans, Pekod, Shoa, Koa, all the Assyrians with them, all of them desirable young men, governors and rulers, captains and men of renown, all of them riding on horses. And they shall come against you with chariots, wagons, and war-horses, with a horde of people. They shall array against you buckler, shield, and helmet all around. ‘I will delegate judgment to them, and they shall judge you according to their judgments. I will set My jealousy against you, and they shall deal furiously with you; they shall remove your nose and your ears, and your remnant shall fall by the sword; they shall take your sons and your daughters, and your remnant shall be devoured by fire. They shall also strip you of your clothes and take away your beautiful jewelry.
Ezekiel 23:27-31 – ‘Thus I will make you cease your lewdness and your harlotry brought from the land of Egypt, so that you will not lift your eyes to them, nor remember Egypt anymore.’ “For thus says the Lord GOD: ‘Surely I will deliver you into the hand of those you hate, into the hand of those from whom you alienated yourself. They will deal hatefully with you, take away all you have worked for, and leave you naked and bare. The nakedness of your harlotry shall be uncovered, both your lewdness and your harlotry. I will do these things to you because you have gone as a harlot after the Gentiles, because you have become defiled by their idols. You have walked in the way of your sister; therefore I will put her cup in your hand.’
Just as God warned, idolatry, or spiritual harlotry brought an end to Judah’s national sovereignty, with massive loss of life. The idolatry God judges in the sixth Trumpet judgment will result in massive loss of life of idolaters, followed by an announcement that Jesus is coming to establish a new kingdom on Earth, which will bring an end to the rule of the beast:
Revelation 11:15 – Then the seventh angel sounded: And there were loud voices in heaven, saying, “The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever!”
John refers to crafting of idols as the “work of their hands.” People made idols out of precious metals like gold, silver or brass, but also of stone or wood. Jeremiah describes the crafting of idols made of wood decorated with precious metals:
Jeremiah 10:3-5 – For the customs of the peoples are futile; for one cuts a tree from the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the ax. They decorate it with silver and gold; they fasten it with nails and hammers so that it will not topple. They are upright, like a palm tree, and they cannot speak; they must be carried, because they cannot go by themselves. Do not be afraid of them, for they cannot do evil, nor can they do any good….
Jeremiah 10:8-9, 14-15 – But they are altogether dull-hearted and foolish; a wooden idol is a worthless doctrine. Silver is beaten into plates; it is brought from Tarshish, and gold from Uphaz, the work of the craftsman and of the hands of the metalsmith; blue and purple are their clothing; they are all the work of skillful men…. Everyone is dull-hearted, without knowledge; every metalsmith is put to shame by an image; for his molded image is falsehood, and there is no breath in them. They are futile, a work of errors; in the time of their punishment they shall perish.
Making statues or images of something is not a sin. God blessed the work of men’s hands that built the temple out of precious metals, stone, and wood, complete with crafted images of heavenly cherubim (2 Chronicles 3:10):
2 Chronicles 2:12-14 – Hiram also said: Blessed be the LORD God of Israel, who made heaven and earth, for He has given King David a wise son, endowed with prudence and understanding, who will build a temple for the LORD and a royal house for himself! And now I have sent a skillful man, endowed with understanding, Huram my master craftsman (the son of a woman of the daughters of Dan, and his father was a man of Tyre), skilled to work in gold and silver, bronze and iron, stone and wood, purple and blue, fine linen and crimson, and to make any engraving and to accomplish any plan which may be given to him, with your skillful men and with the skillful men of my lord David your father.
However, God abhors making material images to use in idolatrous worship:
Deuteronomy 27:15 – ‘Cursed is the one who makes a carved or molded image, an abomination to the LORD, the work of the hands of the craftsman, and sets it up in secret….’
Jeremiah 1:16 – I will utter My judgments against them concerning all their wickedness, because they have forsaken Me, burned incense to other gods, and worshiped the works of their own hands.
God wants us to make things with our hands for His glory; not our glory, or the glory of a false god:
Psalms 90:17 – And let the beauty of the LORD our God be upon us, and establish the work of our hands for us; yes, establish the work of our hands.
Idolatry is about replacing or supplementing God with a false god:
Exodus 20:3-5, 23 – You shall have no other gods before Me. You shall not make for yourself a carved image – any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me…. You shall not make anything to be with Me – gods of silver or gods of gold you shall not make for yourselves.
Isaiah 46:5-7 – “To whom will you liken Me, and make Me equal and compare Me, that we should be alike? They lavish gold out of the bag, and weigh silver on the scales; they hire a goldsmith, and he makes it a god; they prostrate themselves, yes, they worship. They bear it on the shoulder, they carry it and set it in its place, and it stands; from its place it shall not move. Though one cries out to it, yet it cannot answer nor save him out of his trouble.”
As mentioned earlier, idolatry is spiritual harlotry. In other words, a relationship with God is like a marriage relationship. Worshipping idols instead of, or in addition to God, is like cheating on or divorcing a spouse:
Jeremiah 3:1, 21 – “They say, ‘If a man divorces his wife, and she goes from him and becomes another man’s, may he return to her again?’ Would not that land be greatly polluted? But you have played the harlot with many lovers; yet return to Me,” says the LORD….. “Surely, as a wife treacherously departs from her husband, so have you dealt treacherously with Me, O house of Israel,” says the LORD.
Revelation 9:20 – …that they should not worship demons, and idols of gold, silver, brass, stone, and wood, which can neither see nor hear nor walk.
While some people invent false gods, demons have deceived many into believing they are gods:
Deuteronomy 32:16-17 – They provoked Him to jealousy with foreign gods; with abominations they provoked Him to anger. They sacrificed to demons, not to God, to gods they did not know, to new gods, new arrivals that your fathers did not fear.
Psalms 106:35-40 – But they mingled with the Gentiles and learned their works; they served their idols, which became a snare to them. They even sacrificed their sons and their daughters to demons, and shed innocent blood, the blood of their sons and daughters, whom they sacrificed to the idols of Canaan; and the land was polluted with blood. Thus they were defiled by their own works, and played the harlot by their own deeds. Therefore the wrath of the LORD was kindled against His people, so that He abhorred His own inheritance.
2 Chronicles 11:14-15 – For the Levites left their common-lands and their possessions and came to Judah and Jerusalem, for Jeroboam and his sons had rejected them from serving as priests to the LORD. Then he appointed for himself priests for the high places, for the demons, and the calf idols which he had made.
1 Corinthians 10:18-21 – Observe Israel after the flesh: Are not those who eat of the sacrifices partakers of the altar? What am I saying then? That an idol is anything, or what is offered to idols is anything? Rather, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice they sacrifice to demonsand not to God, and I do not want you to have fellowship with demons. You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons; you cannot partake of the Lord’s table and of the table of demons.
Idols made of metal, stone, or wood are inanimate objects that cannot see, hear, or walk. People who make idols with their hands, and then bow down to worship them are as blind, deaf, and disabled as the idol:
Psalms 115:2-8 – Why should the Gentiles say, “So where is their God?” but our God is in heaven; He does whatever He pleases. Their idols are silver and gold, the work of men’s hands. They have mouths, but they do not speak; eyes they have, but they do not see; they have ears, but they do not hear; noses they have, but they do not smell; they have hands, but they do not handle; feet they have, but they do not walk; nor do they mutter through their throat. Those who make them are like them; so is everyone who trusts in them.
Spiritual handicaps like blindness and deafness are the result of an unrepentant, rebellious, hardened heart:
John 12:37-40 – But although He had done so many signs before them, they did not believe in Him, that the word of Isaiah the prophet might be fulfilled, which he spoke: “Lord, who has believed our report? And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?” Therefore they could not believe, because Isaiah said again: “He has blinded their eyes and hardened their hearts, lest they should see with their eyes, lest they should understand with their hearts and turn, so that I should heal them.”
Jeremiah 5:20-23 – “Declare this in the house of Jacob and proclaim it in Judah, saying, ‘Hear this now, O foolish people, without understanding, who have eyes and see not, and who have ears and hear not: Do you not fear Me?’ says the LORD. ‘Will you not tremble at My presence, who have placed the sand as the bound of the sea, by a perpetual decree, that it cannot pass beyond it? And though its waves toss to and fro, yet they cannot prevail; though they roar, yet they cannot pass over it. But this people has a defiant and rebellious heart; they have revolted and departed.‘”
Jesus demonstrated the disabled spiritual state of the religious leaders by miraculously healing eyes, ears, and legs of those physically disabled. The religious leaders were unable to grasp the truth that Jesus was the Messiah and rejected Him even though He performed these miracles before them:
Mark 8:11, 17-18 – Then the Pharisees came out and began to dispute with Him, seeking from Him a sign from heaven, testing Him…. But Jesus, being aware of it, said to them, “Why do you reason because you have no bread? Do you not yet perceive nor understand? Is your heart still hardened? Having eyes, do you not see? And having ears, do you not hear? And do you not remember?
Matthew 9:2-6 – Then behold, they brought to Him a paralytic lying on a bed. When Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralytic, “Son, be of good cheer; your sins are forgiven you.” And at once some of the scribes said within themselves, “This Man blasphemes!” But Jesus, knowing their thoughts, said, “Why do you think evil in your hearts? For which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven you,’ or to say, ‘Arise and walk’? But that you may know that the Son of Man has power on earth to forgive sins” – then He said to the paralytic, “Arise, take up your bed, and go to your house.”
The religious leaders’ idolatry that blinded them to the truth was “covetousness”:
Colossians 3:5 – Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.
Coveting something is to lust after something that is not yours to have:
Luke 12:15 – And He said to them, “Take heed and beware of covetousness, for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of the things he possesses.”
Hebrews 13:5 – Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”
The religious leaders coveted stature among the people to the point that their heart was far from God and focused on themselves; but they were careful to make it look like they were religious because they enjoyed the prestige. Jesus called them hypocrites because their heart and outward appearance were not aligned:
Mark 7:6 – He answered and said to them, “Well did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written: ‘This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far from me….'”
Matthew 6:2, 5, 16 – Therefore, when you do a charitable deed, do not sound a trumpet before you as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory from men. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward…. And when you pray, you shall not be like the hypocrites. For they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the corners of the streets, that they may be seen by men. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward….. Moreover, when you fast, do not be like the hypocrites, with a sad countenance. For they disfigure their faces that they may appear to men to be fasting. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward.
Matthew 23:13-15 – But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you shut up the kingdom of heaven against men; for you neither go in yourselves, nor do you allow those who are entering to go in. Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you devour widows’ houses, and for a pretense make long prayers. Therefore you will receive greater condemnation. Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you travel land and sea to win one proselyte, and when he is won, you make him twice as much a son of hell as yourselves.
Matthew 23:23-28 – Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faith. These you ought to have done, without leaving the others undone. Blind guides, who strain out a gnat and swallow a camel! Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you cleanse the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of extortion and self-indulgence. Blind Pharisee, first cleanse the inside of the cup and dish, that the outside of them may be clean also. Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs which indeed appear beautiful outwardly, but inside are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness. Even so you also outwardly appear righteous to men, but inside you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness.
Since the religious leaders and Israel as a nation cared more about themselves than God, He hardened their hearts with a “spirit of stupor” so they could not understand the truth:
Romans 11:7-11 – What then? Israel has not obtained what it seeks; but the elect have obtained it, and the rest were blinded. Just as it is written: “God has given them a spirit of stupor, eyes that they should not see and ears that they should not hear, to this very day.”And David says: “Let their table become a snare and a trap, a stumbling block and a recompense to them. Let their eyes be darkened, so that they do not see, and bow down their back always.” I say then, have they stumbled that they should fall? Certainly not! But through their fall, to provoke them to jealousy, salvation has come to the Gentiles.
Like the religious leaders and Israel, God will give people over to their hardened hearts, by preventing them from understanding the truth by crippling their spiritual perception:
Isaiah 6:9-10 – And He said, “Go, and tell this people: ‘Keep on hearing, but do not understand; keep on seeing, but do not perceive.’ “Make the heart of this people dull, and their ears heavy, and shut their eyes; lest they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and return and be healed.”
Isaiah 44:9-13 – Those who make an image, all of them are useless, and their precious things shall not profit; they are their own witnesses; they neither see nor know, that they may be ashamed. Who would form a god or mold an image that profits him nothing? Surely all his companions would be ashamed; and the workmen, they are mere men. Let them all be gathered together, let them stand up; yet they shall fear, they shall be ashamed together. The blacksmith with the tongs works one in the coals, fashions it with hammers, and works it with the strength of his arms. Even so, he is hungry, and his strength fails; he drinks no water and is faint. The craftsman stretches out his rule, he marks one out with chalk; he fashions it with a plane, he marks it out with the compass, and makes it like the figure of a man, according to the beauty of a man, that it may remain in the house.
Isaiah 44:14-17 – He cuts down cedars for himself, and takes the cypress and the oak; he secures it for himself among the trees of the forest. He plants a pine, and the rain nourishes it. Then it shall be for a man to burn, for he will take some of it and warm himself; yes, he kindles it and bakes bread; indeed he makes a god and worships it; he makes it a carved image, and falls down to it. He burns half of it in the fire; with this half he eats meat; he roasts a roast, and is satisfied. He even warms himself and says, “Ah! I am warm, I have seen the fire.” And the rest of it he makes into a god, his carved image. He falls down before it and worships it, prays to it and says, “Deliver me, for you are my god!”
Isaiah 44:18-20 – They do not know nor understand; for He has shut their eyes, so that they cannot see, and their hearts, so that they cannot understand. And no one considers in his heart, nor is there knowledge nor understanding to say, “I have burned half of it in the fire, yes, I have also baked bread on its coals; I have roasted meat and eaten it; and shall I make the rest of it an abomination? Shall I fall down before a block of wood he feeds on ashes; a deceived heart has turned him aside; and he cannot deliver his soul, nor say, “Is there not a lie in my right hand?”
God promises judgment on those who worship these lifeless handmade gods:
Deuteronomy 4:24-28 – For the LORD your God is a consuming fire, a jealous God. “When you beget children and grandchildren and have grown old in the land, and act corruptly and make a carved image in the form of anything, and do evil in the sight of the LORD your God to provoke Him to anger, I call heaven and earth to witness against you this day, that you will soon utterly perish from the land which you cross over the Jordan to possess; you will not prolong your days in it, but will be utterly destroyed. And the LORD will scatter you among the peoples, and you will be left few in number among the nations where the LORD will drive you. And there you will serve gods, the work of men’s hands, wood and stone, which neither see nor hear nor eat nor smell.
Psalms 135:14-18 – For the LORD will judge His people, and He will have compassion on His servants. The idols of the nations are silver and gold, the work of men’s hands. They have mouths, but they do not speak; eyes they have, but they do not see; they have ears, but they do not hear; nor is there any breath in their mouths. Those who make them are like them; so is everyone who trusts in them.
Judgment for idolatry goes beyond Israel. God judged the Babylonian king Belshazzar for using the vessels from the Jewish temple in idol worship:
Daniel 5:2, 4-5 – While he tasted the wine, Belshazzar gave the command to bring the gold and silver vessels which his father Nebuchadnezzar had taken from the temple which had been in Jerusalem, that the king and his lords, his wives, and his concubines might drink from them. They drank wine, and praised the gods of gold and silver, bronze and iron, wood and stone. In the same hour the fingers of a man’s hand appeared and wrote opposite the lampstand on the plaster of the wall of the king’s palace; and the king saw the part of the hand that wrote.
Daniel 5:24-30 – Then the fingers of the hand were sent from Him, and this writing was written. “And this is the inscription that was written: MENE, MENE, TEKEL, UPHARSIN. This is the interpretation of each word. MENE: God has numbered your kingdom, and finished it; TEKEL: You have been weighed in the balances, and found wanting; PERES: Your kingdom has been divided, and given to the Medes and Persians.” That very night Belshazzar, king of the Chaldeans, was slain.
Nineveh was also judged for their spiritual harlotry by the horsemen of Babylon:
Nahum 3:1-7 – Woe to the bloody city! It is all full of lies and robbery. Its victim never departs. The noise of a whip and the noise of rattling wheels, of galloping horses, of clattering chariots! Horsemen charge with bright sword and glittering spear. There is a multitude of slain, a great number of bodies, countless corpses – they stumble over the corpses – because of the multitude of harlotries of the seductive harlot, the mistress of sorceries, who sells nations through her harlotries, and families through her sorceries. “Behold, I am against you,” says the LORD of hosts; “I will lift your skirts over your face, I will show the nations your nakedness, and the kingdoms your shame. I will cast abominable filth upon you, make you vile, and make you a spectacle. It shall come to pass that all who look upon you will flee from you, and say, ‘Nineveh is laid waste! Who will bemoan her?’ Where shall I seek comforters for you?”
Likewise, God will judge the spiritual harlots, or idolaters, in the Tribulation with the 200 million horsemen. Unlike the fifth Trumpet judgment that specifically excludes only the 144,000 Jewish servants (Revelation 9:4), the supernatural horsemen target idolaters.
At the time of the sixth Trumpet judgment there will only be one manmade idolatrous religion centered on the mark of the beast and his image (Revelation 13). Therefore, the idolaters in this judgment are followers of the beast (aka antichrist). This suggests believers who have rejected the mark of the beast and his false religion will be exempt from the plagues in sixth Trumpet judgment.
“Devils”: Reminiscent of Paul’s comments about idolatry (see note on 1 Cor. 10:19-20); demons impersonate the stone and wood idols men make.
It is so unimaginable that after many years of suffering and death by this time from the horrible judgments of God, combined with the 144,000, the two witnesses, an angel who gives the Word of God to humans, not to mention the countless number of Tribulation Saints, that the rest of mankind, who were not killed by these plaques, did not repent.
These “men” are not just males, but all of mankind. Women will have to answer for their own actions, as well as the men. What in the world has to happen before they will repent? All of these things worshipped (in verse 20), describes our day. These are things of the world. Trying to out do the neighbors with: a bigger house (“wood or stone”), finer jewelry (“gold and silver”), expensive ornaments (“brass”), and worship of the devil (“worship devils”).
All of these things listed are inanimate objects and have no power to accomplish anything.
Anything or anyone who does not elevate Jesus Christ to deity is in error and worshipping the devil. Jesus said Himself that “He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad” (Matthew 12:30).
We are either on the side of Jesus or the devil. There is no middle ground. We are not to worship God’s creations. We are to worship the Creator.
image courtesy: Revelation 9-20 – Christian Conservative Voice
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We are now living in the absolute End Times as per biblical prophecy.
Our Lord Jesus Christ – King of Kings. 2nd Coming and return is IMMENENT!.
Please do not waist another a minute.
No matter what religion you serve, there is only one God.
If, you want to be assured that you will not have to endure the perilous times that will befall you.
Irrespective, of what sins you may have committed at any time of your life. If you humble yourself and ask for God’s forgiveness. He will forgive you and wash them all away and welcome you as his beloved son or daughter with open arms.
If you are not a child of Father God or have not asked Jesus Christ to come into your life yet?
I implore you to do this without delay.
Read this prayer of Salvation and ask God to forgive you now and accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour and you will be assured of eternal life.