THE FIRST ANGEL'S MESSAGE
Daniel 8:14 | Leviticus 16:1-34 | Leviticus 1:4 | Leviticus 23:28 | Leviticus 23:29 | Daniel 7:9–13 | Daniel 7:10 | Daniel 7:11 | Daniel 7:12 | Daniel 7: 13 | Revelation 14:6 | Revelation 14:7 | Daniel 12:2 | Psalm 19:9 | Revelation 22:12 | Revelation 22:13 | Revelation 22:14 | Ecclesiastes 12:13 | Ecclesiastes 12:14 | Exodus 20:8 | Exodus 20:9 | Exodus 20:10 | Exodus 20: 11
Daniel the prophet was shown in vision that after two _______________ three _______________ days, the sanctuary would be _______________ (Daniel 8:14). This cleansing not only referred to the fact that the defiling work of the little horn would be reversed by the year 1844, it also revealed another significant event that would occur in the plan of salvation.
The only other time the term “cleansing of the sanctuary” was used was on the Day of Atonement, a special day toward the end of the Jewish year when the sanctuary was to be purified from all the sins that had been placed upon it during the year. The high priest was not allowed to enter into the _______________ Place within the _______________, that is, the most holy place, anytime he pleased (Leviticus 16:2). Only on the Day of Atonement was the high priest to enter into it.
On that day, the priest was to take a _______________ full of burning _______________ of fire from the altar before the Lord and, with his hands full of _______________ _______________ beaten fine, and bring it inside the _______________ (Leviticus 16:12). He was then to put _______________ on the fire before the Lord, that the cloud of the incense may _______________ the _______________ seat that is on the Testimony, lest he _______________ (Leviticus 16:13). The work of the high priest on the Day of Atonement was to make an _______________ for the _______________ Place, because of the _______________ of the children of Israel, and because of their transgressions; for all their _______________; he was to do for the _______________ of meeting, which remains among them in the midst of their _______________ (Leviticus 16:16).
To do this, he was to cleanse the altar by sacrificing an animal, and _______________ some of its blood with his finger seven times to _______________ it and _______________ it from the uncleanness of the children of Israel (Leviticus 16:19).
Every day throughout the year, the children of Israel would offer sacrifices for the forgiveness of sin. The sinner was to put his _______________ on the head of a spotless animal, confess his sins over it, and then slay it (Leviticus 1:4). By so doing, the sinner was transferring his sin from himself to the innocent animal.
The animal’s blood was then brought in and sprinkled within the sanctuary, meaning the sin had been transferred to the sanctuary. This collecting of the record of sin occurred throughout the year until the Day of Atonement, when these collected sins were to be wiped away once and for all. The process represented an atonement, “at-one-ment,” between God and the people. (Remember, sin separates in six degrees.)
The Day of Atonement signified the final cleansing of sin and the ultimate reconciliation between man and God. After cleansing the sanctuary, the high priest was to lay _______________ his _______________ on the _______________ of the live _______________ and _______________ over it all the iniquities of the children of Israel, and all their _______________, putting them on the _______________ of the goat, which would be _______________ away by a man into the _______________ (Leviticus 16:21). And “the goat shall _______________ on itself _______________ their _______________ to an uninhabited _______________” (Leviticus 16:22). It was like a day of judgment, the final work of atonement.
The process is similar to another one that many of us go through. Every day, we usually clean our homes and put the garbage outside. Our homes are clean, but the garbage is still with us. One day of the week, the garbage truck comes around. All the garbage is removed by the garbage truck and taken out to a desolate place, only then to be never remembered again. In the same way, when we confess our sins, we know they are forgiven and we are cleansed, but we still have to worry about the problem of sin. The antitypical Day of Atonement teaches the lesson that, in the judgment, God will take all the sins of the saints that have been collecting for thousands of years and ultimately put them on Satan, the “garbage truck,” or “live goat”—a symbol of Satan—who will have to bear the punishment for every sin he has ever led God’s people to commit. But only those who had confessed their sins throughout the year were cleansed on the Day of Atonement. Those who had not participated in the work of confession, of heart searching, were _______________ off from among the people (Leviticus 23:29).
The antitypical Day of Atonement teaches the lesson that, in the judgment, God will take all the sins of the saints that have been collecting for thousands of years and ultimately put them on Satan...
So when Daniel saw the sanctuary being cleansed, he also saw that Christ, our High Priest, would be entering the final phase of His ministry in heaven. The final judgment was about to begin—at the end of which Satan would have all the sins he has ever led God’s people to commit placed back on his own head and suffer for them in a desolate place. Daniel records this vision of Jesus going in before the Father to begin the final phase of His ministry with these words: “I watched till thrones were put in place and the _______________ of Days was _______________; His garment was white as snow, and the hair of His head was like pure wool. His throne was a _______________ _______________, its wheels a burning fire; a fiery stream issued and came forth from before Him (Daniel 7:9). A thousand thousands ministered to Him; ten thousand times ten thousand stood before Him. The _______________ was seated, and the _______________ were opened” (Daniel 7:10).
At the same time, Daniel saw one like the Son of Man come with the _______________ of _______________; He came to the Ancient of Days, and was brought near before Him (Daniel 7:13). Just as the high priest was surrounded by the smoke of incense as he went before God, so Christ our High Priest is symbolized as coming before His Father to perform the closing work of judgment while surrounded by clouds (smoke) of heaven. This is what happened in 1844—the judgment had begun!
With the understanding of the heavenly sanctuary opening up to them, the people of God’s church began to focus upon the message of Revelation 14: “Then I saw another angel flying in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting _______________ to preach to those who dwell on the _______________ —to every nation, tribe, tongue, and people(Revelation 14:6)—saying with a loud voice, ‘Fear God and give glory to Him, for the _______________ of His _______________ has come; and worship Him who made heaven and earth, the sea and springs of water’ ” (Revelation 14:7).
The everlasting gospel had been cast down during the Dark Ages; it was only at the end of the 2,300-years prophecy, when the truths of the sanctuary blueprint were fully restored, that the everlasting gospel could again be preached with power and make its final march to every nation, kindred, tongue, and people, preparing as many as possible to become sound, law-abiding citizens and jurors for the trial of the ages. This message is the final call to accept atonement with God; it is the final call to separate from the sin that separates from God!
The purpose of this judgment is also to reveal to the angels the justice of God’s judgment. Remember, Daniel saw heavenly beings, ten thousand times ten thousand of them in his vision of the judgment. Since angels cannot read the human heart, the “opened books” serve to show them why God has saved who He saved, all whose names are written in the _______________ (Daniel 12:1). When this judgment is finished, the angels will unanimously declare that the _______________ of the Lord are _______________ and _______________ (Psalm 19:9). All of heaven will be united upon the names of the saved without one dissenting voice. It is only after this judgment is complete that Jesus will come again with His _______________ to give to _______________ one according to his _______________ (Revelation 22:12).
Now, while this judgment is occurring in heaven, the people of God on earth are spreading the message that the judgment hour has come. The standard of the judgment is very simple: “_______________ God and _______________ His _______________, for this is man’s all (Ecclesiastes 12:13). For God will bring every work into _______________, including every secret thing, whether good or evil” (Ecclesiastes 12:14). Therefore, the contents of the Ark of the Covenant, the Ten Commandments, must be made known to all the world to prepare them to pass the judgment. “_______________ are those who _______________ His _______________, that they may have the _______________ to the _______________ of life, and may _______________ through the gates into the _______________” (Revelation 22:14).
That’s why the first angel of Revelation 14 points to the law of God as the standard of judgment. But it gets more specific. The message points specifically to those who fear God ... and worship Him who made _______________ and _______________, the sea ad springs of water. (Revelation 14:7). In other words, it points to God as the Creator and specifically quotes the fourth commandment, which states:
“Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. For in six days the Lord made the _______________ and the _______________, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it” (Exodus 20:8–11).
Countering the doctrines of evolution, the first angel points to the true seventh-day Sabbath and the true Creator. The fact that there is a seven-day week is explainable only through the fact that the Bible is true. The divisions of years, months, and days are all explainable by the rotations of the earth, but there is no scientific explanation for the origin of our seven-day week. It came from God!
Much like the last-day message of Noah, the first angel’s message points people to get into the “ark” of safety—the Ark of the Covenant, that is. Today, throughthe preaching of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, the message of God’s sanctuary, the message of His law and His judgment, has reached millions of people, making this end-time prophetic church the fastest-growing denominationin the world. According to USA Today in March 2011, “Newly released data show Seventh-day Adventism growing by 2.5 percent in North America, a rapid clip for this part of the world, where Southern Baptists and mainline denominations, as well as other church groups, are declining. Adventists are even growing 75-percent faster than Mormons (1.4 percent), who prioritize numeric growth.”
For observers outside the Seventh-day Adventist Church, the growth rate in North America is perplexing. “‘You’ve got a denomination that is basically going back to basics … saying, “What did God mean by all these rules and regulations and how can we fit in to be what God wants us to be?’” said Daniel Shaw, an expert on Christian missionary outreach at Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, Calif. “ ‘That’s just totally contrary to anything that’s happening in American culture. So I’m saying, “Whoa! That’s very interesting.” And I can’t answer it.’ ” The answer to his dilemma is simple: The Bible prophesied it, thousands of years in advance, and here we are today watching the fulfillment before our very eyes.