Beyond Disappointment
Revelation 10:10, 11
r10o
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 8 ¶ And the voice which I heard from heaven spake unto me again, and said, Go and take the little book which is open in the hand of the angel which standeth upon the sea and upon the earth.
 9 And I went unto the angel, and said unto him, Give me the little book. And he said unto me, Take it, and eat it up; and it shall make thy belly bitter, but it shall be in thy mouth sweet as honey.
  These verses are included for context.
.10 And I took the little book out of the angel's hand, and ate it up; and it was in my mouth sweet as honey: and as soon as I had eaten it, my belly was bitter.   Angel's hand The message of the book came from Heaven re1001. More below.
 11 And he said unto me, Thou must prophesy again before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings.   Prophesy again About the finishing of the mystery. This indicates that the message itself was prophetic. Also that there was hope beyond disappointment.
  Before many The wording shows that the judgment-hour message is involved. It was preached under the symbol of the first of three angels re1406b.
  Please read the explanation below.
 11:1 ¶ And there was given me a reed like unto a rod: and the angel stood, saying, Rise, and measure the temple of God, and the altar, and them that worship therein.   Covered on the next page but we can already see the judgment in the measuring.
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Note 10:10a
It seems like John would have known
   Did you notice what the angel said? Take the little book, "and eat it up; and it shall make thy belly bitter but it shall be in thy mouth sweet as honey." To eat the book would be to take it's principles into one's life. And what happened? Just as the angel said, the book would be bitter in his stomach.
   "And I took the little book out of the angel's hand, and ate it up; and it was in my mouth sweet as honey: and as soon as I had eaten it, my belly was bitter." (Rev. 10:10)
   Notice John's three actions in this verse.

Taking the book accepting or studying it.
Eating it living by it (or living by what is thought to be its message).
Finding it bitter to the belly or tummy Bitter experience resulting from it.

    Was it by mere chance that this happened in the movement leading to the great disappointment in 1844? John should have known because the angel told him, and we see that God knew ahead of time that the book would be bitter, yet the Angel invited John to eat it. The sweet taste of the book indicates high expectations for a spiritual reward. Although told that it would be bitter, John's actions indicate that he hadn't heard that part. The Scriptures show this foreknowledge of God also in re1111ff and in the story of the souls under the altar re0610. If you landed on this page without seeing the background, don't worry now about 1844. There are plenty of important concepts in this chapter. When you have a chance, take a closer look at the 1844 idea and why some people believe it is a special time in history.

Note 10:10b
Tasting the book
   Usually prophetic messages are more direct. The prophet hears or sees and then writes about it. In this prophecy, John tasted the book. His experience itself then becomes symbolic. Compare je2309 and most of Daniel 10. See d10notes. Ezekiel too had a feeling experience as in the notes below.
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Note 10:11a
Prophesy again
    John, no doubt still feeling the bitterness, is assured that this is not the end. The disappointment from following the instructions did not mean he was unsuccessful.  "And he said unto me, Thou must prophesy again before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings."

Why "again"?
   We thought John was eating a book. Was he prophesying? Remember that to prophesy doesn't always mean to foretell the future, although that's what John does in most of the book of Revelation and certainly here. His work is not over.
   Also we might take for granted that he would continue to write. The emphasis reflects not only John's job but, as before, the experience of the people who suffered the disappointment in 1844. It was not over. God was still leading. They had more to learn and indeed to share with the world, communicating light from God.
   The prophet Ezekiel was given a similar vision about eating a sweet tasting book, or scroll ez0209-3:3. It is interesting that after eating it he was given an unpopular message of judgment to deliver. His readers were in captivity in Babylon ez0311, reluctant to come out.
   "So the spirit lifted me up, and took me away, and I went in bitterness, in the heat of my spirit; but the hand of the LORD was strong upon me. Then I came to them of the captivity at Telabib, that dwelt by the river of Chebar, and I sat where they sat, and remained there astonished among them seven days. And it came to pass at the end of seven days, that the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, Son of man, I have made thee a watchman unto the house of Israel: therefore hear the word at my mouth, and give them warning from me." ez0314-7.
   So God had a message for the world to be carried by the disappointed people.

Before peoples, nations, tongues, and kings
   Why would the Spirit have influenced John to describe the new mission as with such a global audience? The series of groups reminds us of another message.
   "And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come: and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters." (Rev. 14:6, 7)

   Very interesting. The angel is announcing a message about judgment. The advent believers had  been preaching about judgment using these verses. Imagine their amazement when they discovered this chapter after having been so bitterly disappointed when Jesus did not return in 1844! 0611a. They had been preaching that the judgment hour had come. Their mistake was to connect this with the return of Christ and the destruction of the world by fire.
   In verse 11 they must have found encouragement. Although about a seventh of the whole US population had accepted the advent message before 1844, only a few continued to study the prophecies after the disappointment. Some of these tried to set more dates, but a group of the few prayed and searched the Scriptures. They had recognized the leading of God in their preaching and wanted to know what went wrong. Their breakthrough discovery was to realize that the sanctuary they knew was being cleansed da0814 was not the earth but the sanctuary in heaven because God had had no sanctuary here since the veil was torn from top to bottom at the death of the Lamb of God which it represented.

Note 10:11b
God's hand in leading people out of the 1844 error

   Would God raise up people from the crushed hopes of 1844 to carry the message of the angel of judgment? In fact. . .

Is all this explanation a cover-up to save face for those who were wrong in 1844?
   This is a fair question. Some people believe it to be the case, and I don't expect you to buy my explanations without careful study. I'm just sharing what I believe Revelation and the other passages tell us about this. On the question of saving face we all have an important lesson to learn. When Jesus didn't come, all but a tiny group of those following the advent movement, suddenly denied everything they had believed, not examining it to see what happened and what ideas were right and what were wrong. These were the ones who saved face, not those who braved ridicule to study what the Bible really taught so0507. It was the same at the time of the flood. We must personally make our calling and election sure 2pe0110. Many are called, few are chosen or elected mt2016, and even then we need to continually seek the strength of Christ to keep that election sure.

Is there really a judgment before the coming of Christ?
   You may wish to read our discussion in connection with the angel messenger mentioned above 1407d. The judgment is connected with the cleansing or vindication of the sanctuary 0308a. Those who refused the cleansing work of Christ were on the day of atonement of the sanctuary were thus judged unworthy. That time represents the end-time judgment.
   The importance of that very critical time is seen in many places in Revelation (for example 0802+0805). It is also at the very heart of the Pentateuch, the five books of Moses. They are Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy. The middle book, Leviticus, is divided thematically into two parts. Between them is chapter 16 explaining the day of atonement le-stru. So as in the chiastic literary structure often seen in the Scriptures 0100, this cleansing work is right at the focal point! It is also at the center of the chiasm in the Song of Solomon.

Note 10:11c
What did John (and the people he represented) preach about?

   "And I took the little book out of the angel's hand, and ate it up; and it was in my mouth sweet as honey: and as soon as I had eaten it, my belly was bitter. And he said unto me, Thou must prophesy again before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings." (Rev. 10:10, 11)

   First, the text doesn't say "preach" it says, "Thou must prophesy again. . . ." The disappointed ones would have a message to present. When we identify them as those who had the testimony of Jesus and with whom the dragon will make war, we recognize them in the last verse of chapter 12. This helps us see that their message is connected with prophecy 1217d.

   So what were they to prophesy about? I want you to think about this. Scan back over the whole chapter in your Bible. The Holy Spirit has set up the drama of the situation so that after the resolution, two things would be known. What were the two hidden things?
The message of the seven thunders and the mystery of godliness. I believe that both were involved in the preaching and that the time of the disappointment is important in both..

The next verse is in chapter 11 but it's part of the picture here
   "And there was given me a reed like unto a rod: and the angel stood, saying, Rise, and measure the temple of God, and the altar, and them that worship therein." (Rev. 11:1).

   We'll unpack this more when we start chapter 11, but notice that it is about measuring the temple. Measurement is appraisal or judgment. The problem of the disappointment 0611a was in thinking the cleansing of the sanctuary was the coming of Christ to cleanse the earth by fire. That did not happen. So God sent the people who were searching back to measure or figure out the sanctuary (temple), altar, and worshippers. Then they could prophecy or preach "before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings."
   The people are being judged. Christ is the judge jn0522. John still represents those who had been disappointed.  If not judging, in what sense were the disappointed ones to measure the worshippers? They were to see what happens to them in the sanctuary.

Seven thunders
   "And [the mighty angel from heaven] cried with a loud voice, as when a lion roareth: and when he had cried, seven thunders uttered their voices. And when the seven thunders had uttered their voices, I was about to write: and I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Seal up those things which the seven thunders uttered, and write them not." (Rev. 10:3, 4)
   If you don't recall our earlier discussion of the seven thunders, you might want to review 1003 and follow the link to the notes. Thunder announces a storm. They represent important warnings or information from God. ex1916. Let's look at the chapter in summary: It has a literary structure.

The mighty angel (Christ) came with a little book and roared like a lion (verses 1, 2)
The thunders spoke, but John was told not to reveal what they said (3, 4)

The angel announces an end to "time" and that the mystery of God would be finished (5-7)

The voice speaks again. He tells John to eat the bitter book and that it would be bitter. (8)
John asks for the book, eats it, and sweetness turned bitter. (9, 10)

   The last two parts, I believe, are in the pattern of the first two with the key announcement in the center. The thunders will then reveal the experience that would start sweet and then turn bitter. Christ knew all along what would happen, but had a purpose in allowing His followers to have the sweet and bitter experience. Might this experience be represented by the psalm of the seven voices of God? See "seven thunders" at re1003.
   In the table below we will read the psalm on the left and show how it relates to the experience of those expecting the advent of Christ in 1844. In chapter 14, we find the messages of the three angels.
And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come: and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters.
And there followed another angel, saying, Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication.
And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand,  The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation. . . . (Rev. 14:6-11).
   Miller and others in various places were preached the first two messages. They announced that the time of judgment had come, and they called people to come out and take a stand for it. They apparently didn't understand the meaning of the beast and, although they may have spoken about the third angel, their message was basically that delivered by the first two. After the disappointment, as the third message was understood, all three began to be preached re1406b. This means that the events representing the time of the first two angels just might be seen in the psalm.

Even without the third column, this chart is significant.

Psalm 29 Passages that clarify Events brought to view
Verse 1. Give [ascribe] unto the LORD, O ye mighty [or "sons of the mighty"], give unto the LORD glory and strength.  [We may see the "sons of the mighty" as angels, who are asked to praise the Lord.] Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? . . . When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy?  (See Job 38:4, 7) The advent preachers presented the message represented in Revelation 14 as from angels flying in the sky. William Miller was the most notable American to call people to be prepared.
2.  Give unto the LORD the glory due unto his name; worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness. And I saw another angel [first of three] fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come: and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters." (Rev. 14:6, 7) The call was to prepare for the judgment. Miller and others used the passages about the first angel.
3. The voice of the LORD is upon the waters; the God of glory thunders, the LORD, upon many waters. In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. (Gen. 1:1, 2) [Again we see the Creator as described by the first angel (above)]

The "waters" are also seen in Rev. 14:7, above.

The adversaries of the LORD shall be broken to pieces; out of heaven shall he thunder upon them: the LORD shall judge the ends of the earth; and he shall give strength unto his king, and exalt the horn of his anointed. (1 Sam. 2:10)

We see the call to worship the creator. See Rev. 14:6, 7, quoted above.
4. The voice of the LORD is powerful; the voice of the LORD is full of majesty. [Perhaps the double voice in this verse is to emphasize its centrality.] And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven. . . Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come. . . . (Rev. 14:6, 7) The message about the coming of Jesus in 1844 was preached far and wide. A large portion of the population of the US accepted it, although no church was formed. Many were disfellowshiped from their churches. We know less about the numbers who listened to Joseph Wolf and preachers across the Atlantic.
5, 6. The voice of the LORD breaketh the cedars; yea, the LORD breaketh the cedars of Lebanon. He maketh them also to skip like a calf; Lebanon and Sirion like a young unicorn. And there followed another angel, saying, Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication. (Rev. 14:8) The church leaders whose fathers had been like the cedars standing firm for revealed truth during the Protestant Reformation, refused the message and "fell." Remember that, although wrong about what would happen, the advent preachers were right about the beginning time of the judgment. The message was a call for repentance.
7. The voice of the LORD divideth [or "cuts out"] the flames of fire. But the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men. (2 Peter 3:7) Miller and others did not realize that the the judgment announced by the first angel was a time for examination of the books, while the judgment of fire  would be carrying out the sentence at the end of the thousand years r20.
8. The voice of the LORD shaketh [causes to writhe] the wilderness; the LORD shaketh the wilderness of Kadesh. And Moses sent messengers from Kadesh unto the king of Edom. . . , Let us pass, I pray thee, through thy country: . . . we will not turn to the right hand nor to the left, until we have passed thy borders. And Edom said unto him, Thou shalt not pass by me, lest I come out against thee with the sword. And the children of Israel said unto him, We will go by the high way. . . . And he said, Thou shalt not go through. And the children of Israel, even the whole congregation, journeyed from Kadesh, and came unto mount Hor. (Num. 20:14-22) God had told the Israelites to request peaceful passage through Edom to the land of Canaan (Deut. 2:6). They asked twice and were refused. Instead they went sent to another place and did not enter until later. Their disappointment illustrates the disappointment of those who were expecting to enter the heavenly Canaan in 1843 and the greater sorrow in 1844. We er still in the wilderness. Entry will come later.
9a. The voice of the LORD maketh the hinds to calve, and discovereth [strips bare] the forests: Knowest thou the time when the wild goats of the rock bring forth? or canst thou mark when the hinds do calve? (Job 39:1)

Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh. (Matt. 25:13). 

Miller had accurately calculated the time of the cleansing of the sanctuary predicted by Daniel (8:14), but he thought the sanctuary was the earth to be cleansed with fire. He overlooked passages that say we do not know the time of Christ's return.
 9b. and in his temple doth every one speak of his glory. The LORD is in his holy temple, the LORD'S throne is in heaven: his eyes behold, his eyelids try, the children of men. (Ps. 11:4)

. . . We have such an high priest, who is set on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens; A minister of the sanctuary, and of the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, and not man.  (Heb. 8:1, 2)

And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven. . . . Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come. . . . (Rev. 14:6, 7)

The advent believers didn't realize that the temple in heaven was where the judgment had begun. After the disappointment, when God removed the obscurity, those who searched for truth discovered the passage quoted from Hebrews.
10. The LORD sitteth upon the flood; yea, the LORD sitteth King for ever.
11. The LORD will give strength unto his people; the LORD will bless his people with peace 
And this shall be a statute for ever unto you . . . ye shall afflict your souls, and do no work at all, whether it be one of your own country, or a stranger that sojourneth among you: For on that day shall the priest make an atonement for you, to cleanse you, that ye may be clean from all your sins before the LORD. (Lev. 16:29, 30) [See also Isa. 26:3] The work of the judgment time is to help people become clean before God, sealed for the coming of the Lord in the clouds. Those who accept this cleansing work will be ready to meet their Lord. The passage from Psalm 29 describes the result of the day of atonement. God will strengthen and bless His people. Now is the time for our heart preparation.

A reason to look for additional truth
   For more than a thousand years the church forbade the study of the Scriptures except by the clergy. During the Protestant Reformation, truth was gradually uncovered and taught. Thus we have a time of spiritual enlightenment similar to that of the children of Israel. With the Counter Reformation and the defensive attitude and even persecution by the Protestant churches, the progress of recovering lost truth had stopped.
   The shock of the disappointment in 1844 caused those who trusted God deeply, to search the Scriptures to see what went wrong. They first discovered how Christ's work for our salvation is seen in the Sanctuary. The advent believers had part of it, but God saw that it was not time for them to understand it all. Thus after the disappointment, the Spirit would continue to reveal truth to being the understanding back to the early Church.
   Truth was similarly revealed during the Reformation. Wycliffe knew a little, Luther added more, Calvin contributed more, and so on. The people weren't ready for all of it and God judged them by what they had opportunity to learn. Of course all the truth was in the Bible all the time.

More
   "And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come: and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters." (Rev. 14:6, 7)
   We discuss the judgment at length as we study chapter 14 re1400.

The mystery of Godliness revealed
   Those who are completely committed to Christ, fully claiming His promises, reveal to the universe that Jesus Christ has the power to save to the uttermost (Heb. 7:25). The mystery will thus be demonstrated and the righteous will be sealed re1401b.

    You and I may, by God's grace, stand in Christ, walking day by day ever closer to Him as Enoch. What an honor! What a joy.


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