A condensed and graphic description of the processes of judgment on the rebellious and sinful race follows. Evil has wrought itself out to its most terrible expression, and now it is to be smitten without mercy.
Everything opened with a great voice sounding from the temple. Terrible physical suffering follows the pouring out of each of the first four bowls. The fifth angel pours his bowl, and the kingdom of the beast is wrapped in darkness. Notwithstanding the unimaginable terror of their condition, the evil men still "blasphemed the God of heaven," and "they repented not of their works."
The sixth angel pours his bowl, and there is a change in the method of judgment. The great river Euphrates is dried up. The drying up of this river makes easy the gathering together of the kings of the earth to do battle against the hosts of God. Then comes Har-Magedon.
In the midst of all this John seems to hear a word of Christ, and answers it in a parenthesis. It announces His coming, and pronounces blessing on those who watch. In all these processes of judgment it would seem that a remnant was continually being lifted into the position of submission and loyalty, and every now and again some such word as this declares the watchfulness and tenderness of God and His readiness to receive and rescue from the judgments those who turn to Him.
The seventh angel pours his bowl upon the air, and the voice from the temple is again heard crying, "It is done." The all-permeating power of God which has operated in beneficent gentleness now shakes the earth, and the judgment of Babylon takes place. Yet again it is written that men still blaspheme God.
the Third Week after Epiphany