A vision: two witnesses

I was given a measuring rod and  told, “Go and measure the Temple of God and the altar, and count the number of worshippers. But don’t measure the outer courtyard, for that has been handed over to the Gentiles. They will trample the holy city for 42 months. And I will appoint two witnesses. They will be clothed in sackcloth and will prophesy during those 1,260 days.”

These two prophets are the two olive trees and the two lampstands that stand before the Lord of all the earth. If anyone tries to harm them, fire comes out of their mouths to consume their enemies. This is how anyone who wishes to harm them must die. And they have the power to shut up the sky so that no rain falls while they prophesy. They also have the ability to turn the rivers and oceans into blood, and to strike the earth with every kind of plague whenever as they wish.

But when they have completed their testimony, the beast that comes up out of the bottomless pit will wage war on them. He will overcome them and kill them. And their bodies will lie in the central square of that great city, the one which is figuratively called “Sodom” and “Egypt,” the same city where their Lord was crucified. For three and a half days people from every tribe, language, and nation will gaze at their bodies. No one will be allowed to bury them, for all the people of the world will gloat over them and give presents to each other to celebrate the death of the two prophets who had tormented them.

Then, after those three and a half days, God will breathe life into them and they will stand up. Terror will strike all who stared at them. Then a loud voice from heaven will call out, “Come up here!” And the two prophets will ascend into heaven in a cloud as their enemies watch.

At the same time there will be a terrible earthquake that destroys a tenth of the city. Seven thousand people will die in the earthquake, and everyone else will be terrified and give glory to the God of heaven.

When the second terror is past, the third will follow quickly.

Thee seventh angel sounded his trumpet, and there were loud voices shouting out in heaven: “The world has now become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, and he will reign forever and ever.”

The twenty-four elders sitting on their thrones before God fell with their faces to the ground and worshipped him, saying, “We give thanks to you, Lord God Almighty, the One who is and who was, for now you have assumed your great power and have begun to reign. The nations had been filled with anger,  but now the time of your wrath has come. It is time to judge the dead and reward your servants the prophets, and all of your people – those that honour your name – from the least of them to the greatest. And it is also time to destroy all those who have destroyed the earth.”

Then, in heaven, the Temple of God was opened and the ark of his covenant could be seen inside it. Then came flashes of lightning, peals of  thunder, an earthquake, and a terrible hailstorm.

John

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