Revelation 6:15, 16
And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every slave…
And the kings of the earth, etc. The last day, the day of days, will be a day of wonders. The words indicate three of the wonders of that day.
I. MEN DREADING THE FACE OF CHRIST. "The face of him that sitteth on the throne." Here are men preferring annihilation to a sight of that face. What is the matter with that face? It was, indeed, the human face Divine, the serenest, the loveliest, the kindliest face ever seen on earth. It was a face whose expression towards men was, "Come unto me," etc. What change has come over it now? Why are men afraid of it now? Their guilty consciences have made that face terrific. The sight of that face will call up such memories of their ingratitude, their folly, their impiety, as will make existence intolerable.
II. THE LAMB WROUGHT INTO WRATH. "The wrath of the Lamb." How strange and unnatural is this! The wrath of love is the most terrible of wrath.
1. It implies the greatest moral enormity in the object of it. The wrath of malign natures is soon kindled, is capricious, often rages without reason. But when love is indignant, there must be fearful enormity in the object.
2. It exerts most agonizing influence upon the conscience of its object. The anger of malign natures seldom touches the conscience of its victim, but often awakens contempt and defiance. Not so when love is indignant; the indignation of love is crushing. What power on earth is so withering as the indignation of a parent who is essentially benevolent and loving?
3. It is unquenchable until tile reasons for its existence are removed. The wrath of malign natures often burns itself out, but the wrath of love is a determined opposition to evil.
III. HUMANITY CRYING FOR ANNIHILATION. "And the kings of the earth, and the great men... hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains; and said to the mountains and the rocks, Fall on us, and hide us," etc. Love of life is the strongest instinct in human nature, and hence the dread of death. Here is the chief and first of all dreads. What will men not give away to avoid death? But what a change now! They earnestly cry for that which they dreaded! They cry for annihilation.
1. The cry is earnest. "Mountains and rocks." The language breathes earnestness. Existence has become intolerable. It is a curse that can no longer be borne.
2. The cry is general. "The kings of the earth, the great men, the rich men, and the chief captains, the mighty men, every bondman and every free," etc. The conquerors of the world, the iron masters of nations, men whose names struck terror through ages, now quail in agony and cry for extinction.
3. The cry is fruitless. They cry to the "mountains and rocks." What can they do for them? Can they hear them? Have they hearts to feel? No; insensitive, immovable, these remain amid the wildest shrieks. But were they to fall on them would they crush them? The material universe cannot crush a soul. It is an inextinguishable spark. God alone can quench a soul. - D.T.
Parallel VersesKJV: And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every free man, hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains;