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The Supper of the Great God!

12 Apr
Supper of the Great God

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In Revelation 19:17 John saw an angel standing in the sun (i.e. in the east), and that angel called to all the fowls of the air to come to the supper of the great God! What I find interesting is what God had prepared for them to eat. It was not a meal that normal people would be expected to enjoy. Rather it was a meal that one would expect carnivorous or predatory beasts to gather to eat. It was: “the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses, and of them that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great” (Revelation 19:18). The question is: is this the Marriage Supper of the Lamb? The Greek word used for supper is deipnon (G1173), and it is the same word used in Revelation 19:9.

Moreover, in the Gospel of Luke Jesus mentions only one supper (Luke 14:16-24), and in that same parable the dinner (G712) and the supper (G1173) are differentiated (Luke 14:12). The dinner (G712), according to Thayer’s Lexicon was the first meal of the day (breakfast), but Strong’s Greek Dictionary adds ‘luncheon’ or dinner taken in the early afternoon. The supper (G1173) referred to the formal meal taken in the evening (Thayer) or the chief meal of the day (Strong).

In Jesus’ Parable of the Wedding in Matthew 22 a great man arranged a marriage of his son. He also prepared a dinner (G712) for him (Matthew 22:2, 4). No matter what time of day one puts this meal, it would have been the main meal of the day. The Greek word’s only appearance in the LXX occurs in 2Samuel 24:15. The context is David had sinned and was given a choice of how he would be punished by God. He asked the Lord to choose for him, so the Lord chose pestilence for three days. The pestilence began in the morning (presumably dawn) and the Hebrew is translated “until the time (H6256) appointed” (H4150). A literal translation could be rendered “the evening (H6256) feast” (H4150). Nevertheless, the context demands a timeframe ‘from beginning to end,’ which in this case would have been three days. The point is that the Greek word used in the place of the two Hebrew words (H6256 and H4150) in the LXX is ariston (G712). This word, therefore, seems to be a synonym for deipnon (G1173). While G712 may usually refer to breakfast or luncheon, it may also refer to the evening meal, instead of G1173.

In other words, the Supper of the Great God (Revelation 19:18) is the same as the Marriage Feast of the Lamb (Revelation 19:9), and both refer to the marriage feast of Matthew 22 and the great supper of Luke 14. These accounts of a great meal or banquet refer to the same event.

The next thing John saw was that of those coming together in battle: the beast and the kings of the earth, which are identified in Psalm 2 and Acts 4:24-28 as the Jewish state and the Romans, respectively. Both come against the Son of God (Psalm 2) or the Lamb and his armies (Revelation 19:19). The kings of the earth never really wanted to destroy the Jewish state (cp. Revelation 18:3, 9). Nevertheless, the Lord had put it into their hearts to do that which they mourned over later (cp. Revelation 17:16-17). I am reminded of what the Lord had once done for Jehoshaphat, king of Judah when three great armies came against him in 2Chronicles 20. The king was told the battle was the Lord’s, and Jehoshaphat wouldn’t have to fight (2Chronicles 20:15, 17). What the Lord did was, he turned the three armies that came against Judah against one another. They fought one another until there were none left to fight Judah (2Chronicles 20:22-23), which in the context of Revelation 19:20, foretold the destruction of the beast, which is the Jewish state, and the false prophet.

According to the text, the beast and the false prophet were cast into the ‘lake of fire’ (Revelation 19:20). I will discuss the lake of fire in greater detail later, but for now let me say that all this means is that the false prophet was killed, or destroyed. The false prophet was slain at the very beginning of the war between Jerusalem and Rome.[1] The beast, which is the Jewish state governed by the Roman Emperors, was destroyed in 70 AD or about 3 ½ years after the false prophet was slain.

Nothing specifically is said of the kings of the earth, but, according to Revelation 18:9, they mourned over the destruction of the Jewish state, so they couldn’t have been literally slain in battle with the Lord. Rather, they would be slain with the sword that proceeded from his mouth (Revelation 19:21). In other words they had the Gospel preached to them, and their destruction (cp. Daniel 2:44) occurs over ages, as the Gospel of Christ is embraced and destroys the evil among the nations.

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[1] See my studies: The Mouth of the Beast and Who is the False Prophet of the Apocalypse?

 
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Posted by on April 12, 2020 in Apocalypse, Book of Revelation

 

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