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Revelation chapter 15

What does Revelation chapter 15 mean?

Revelation 15 is a short chapter, bridging two sections in John's series of visions. After the trumpet judgments, the focus of Revelation changed from a more-or-less chronological account to a description of certain people and events. Among these are infamous concepts such as the woman clothed with the sun, the Antichrist, the False Prophet, and the mark of the beast. Here, John will see one final vision before he is shown the rest of the tribulation judgments, represented by bowls.

The first vision John sees here is that of seven angels. These carry the last judgments God will use during the tribulation. The scene is one of celebration, as redeemed believers sing a song of worship to God. This echoes similar songs of praise offered by Israel after their deliverance from slavery in Egypt (Exodus 15). The sea of glass mentioned here is presumably the same one referred to in Revelation 4 (Revelation 15:1–4).

Revelation presents God's final judgments on sin in three groups of seven. The first set of judgments was represented by the opening of seals on a scroll (Revelation 5:1). The second set was represented by trumpets (Revelation 8:6). This last pattern will involve bowls, symbolically filled with the wrath of God. This segment also indicates that the sanctuary in heaven was filled with smoke during this time, preventing anyone from approaching God until the judgments were completed (Revelation 15:5–8).

After this brief interlude, Revelation will resume explaining the end-times judgments in chapter 16. There, the catastrophic bowl judgments will begin.
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