How to See the Great and Wonderful

Speaker Notes

Revelation 15  (NIV)

Seven Angels With Seven Plagues

I saw in heaven another great and marvelous sign: seven angels with the seven last plagues—last, because with them God’s wrath is completed. And I saw what looked like a sea of glass glowing with fire and, standing beside the sea, those who had been victorious over the beast and its image and over the number of its name. They held harps given them by God and sang the song of God’s servant Moses and of the Lamb:

“Great and marvelous are your deeds,
    Lord God Almighty.
Just and true are your ways,
    King of the nations.
Who will not fear you, Lord,
    and bring glory to your name?
For you alone are holy.
All nations will come
    and worship before you,
for your righteous acts have been revealed.”

After this I looked, and I saw in heaven the temple—that is, the tabernacle of the covenant law—and it was opened. Out of the temple came the seven angels with the seven plagues. They were dressed in clean, shining linen and wore golden sashes around their chests. Then one of the four living creatures gave to the seven angels seven golden bowls filled with the wrath of God, who lives for ever and ever. And the temple was filled with smoke from the glory of God and from his power, and no one could enter the temple until the seven plagues of the seven angels were completed.

"Deor" – from The Earliest English Poems, 1986 (latest) Penguin Classics

Wayland knew the wanderer’s fate:
that single-willed earl suffered agonies,
sorrow and longing the sole companions
of his ice-cold exile. Anxieties bit
when Nithhad put a knife to his hamstrings,
laid clever bonds on the better man. 

          That went by; this may too. 

Beadohild mourned her murdered brothers:
but her own plight pained her more
- her womb grew great with child.
when she knew that, she could never hold
steady before her wit what was to happen. 

          That went by; this may too. 

All have heard of Hild’s ravishing:
the Geat’s lust was ungovernable,
their bitter love banished sleep. 

          That went by; this may too. 

Thirty winters Theodric ruled
the Maering city: and many knew it. 

          That went by; this may too. 

We all know that Eormanric
had a wolf’s wit. Wide Gothland
lay in the grasp of that grim king,
and through it many sat, by sorrows environed,
foreseeing only sorrow; sighed for the downfall
and thorough overthrow of the thrall-maker. 

          That went by; this may too. 

When each gladness has gone, gathering sorrow
may cloud the brain; and in his breast a man
can not then see how his sorrows shall end.
But he may think how throughout this world
it is the way of God, who is wise, to deal
to the most part of men much favour
and a flourishing fame; to a few the sorrow-share. 

Of myself in this regard I shall say this only:
that in the hall of the Heodenings I held long the makarship,
lived dear to my prince, Deor my name;
many winters I held this happy place
and my lord was kind. Then came Heorrenda,
whose lays were skillful; the lord of fighting-men
settled on him the estate bestowed once on me. 

          That went by; this may too.

David’s July 4 column on the Massachusetts Citizens For Life website:

That’s what Lincoln reminded us as he made a stop at Philadelphia’s Independence Hall on his way to Washington, D.C., for his first inauguration, in 1861:

“I have never had a feeling politically that did not spring from the sentiments embodied in the Declaration of Independence. …I have often inquired of myself what great principle or idea it was that kept this Confederacy so long together. It was not the mere matter of the separation of the Colonies from the motherland; but that sentiment in the Declaration of Independence which gave liberty, not alone to the people of this country, but, I hope, to the world, for all future time. It was that which gave promise that in due time the weight would be lifted from the shoulders of all men.”

David is a Theologian and Ethicist.