Revelation 11:1-13

Sunday Morning Bible Study

June 3, 2001


Revelation 11 is in the middle of the time on earth called the Tribulation, the time when God is bringing His judgment against sin.

Revelation 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.

John is asked to measure a temple in Jerusalem.

reedkalamos – a reed; a staff made of a reed, a reed staff; a measuring reed or rod; a writer’s reed, a pen; The “reed” for the Jews was a stick that was 6 cubits (about 9 to 10 feet) long.

rodrhabdos – a staff, a walking stick, a twig, rod, branch; a rod with which one is beaten; a staff; as used on a journey, or to lean upon, or by shepherds; a royal sceptre

the angel – which angel?  Probably the “rainbow angel” of Revelation 10.

measuremetreo – to measure, to measure out or off; any space or distance with a measurer’s reed or rule; Some think that the act of “measuring” has to do with establishing ownership over something.  God is going to be taking back this temple.

templenaos – used of the temple at Jerusalem, but only the building itself without the courtyard.

altarthusiasterion – the altar for slaying and burning of victims used of; the altar of whole burnt offerings which stood in the court of the priests in the temple at Jerusalem; the altar of incense which stood in the sanctuary or the Holy Place

them that worshipproskuneo – to kiss the hand to (towards) one, in token of reverence

Even the worshippers are measured, perhaps to see just what kind of worshippers they are.


The temple

The last Jewish temple was destroyed by Titus in AD 70. There has not been a temple since that time. There will be at least one more temple built on the temple mount. There has to be a temple in the days of the Tribulation.
There has to be so the antichrist has something to defile and perform his “abomination of desolation” (Mat. 24:15-16).
Mt 24:15-16  When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:) 16  Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains:
The abomination of desolation is an act that will occur when the antichrist will enter the Jewish temple and declare that he is God. This will cause the temple to become “abominable” and will bring “desolation”.
The biggest problem to the rebuilding of the temple today is the location of two Islamic mosques on the temple mount, the Dome of the Rock, and the Al Aksa Mosque. When Israel took over all of Jerusalem after the 1967 war, Moshe Dayan met with a council of Moslem clerics and gave them control of the entire temple mount, as a way of making peace with the Islamic residents of Jerusalem.
For a temple to be rebuilt, there either needs to be some kind of agreement with the Arabs allowing the Jews to rebuild on a portion of the temple mount, or something has to happen where the mosques are destroyed and the Jews gain control over the area. Considering the state of affairs in Israel at the moment, either is possible.
It is possible that the antichrist’s treaty with Israel at the beginning of the Tribulation (Dan. 9:27) will pave the way for their temple to be rebuilt.


We are very close.

The preparations have been made for a temple. The priests have been trained, their garments have been made. The temple items have been constructed. We are very, very close.

:2 But the court which is without the temple leave out, and measure it not; for it is given unto the Gentiles:

the court – This is referring to the courtyard around the temple.

leaveekballo – to cast out, drive out, to send out; to expel a person from a society: to banish from a family; to draw out with force, tear out; to reject with contempt, to cast off or away; to except, to leave out, i.e. not receive

Gentilesethnos – a multitude (whether of men or of beasts) associated or living together; a multitude of individuals of the same nature or genus; a tribe, nation, people group; in the OT, foreign nations not worshipping the true God, pagans, Gentiles

It is thought that by this description, the temple might be built alongside the mosques on the temple mount. If the mosques were sitting in what might have been the “court of the Gentiles”, there could possibly be a way of fitting both the temple and the mosques side by side, all on the temple mount.

:2 and the holy city shall they tread under foot forty and two months.

shall they tread under footpateo – to tread; to trample, crush with the feet; to advance by setting foot upon, tread upon: to encounter successfully the greatest perils from the machinations and persecutions with which Satan would fain thwart the preaching of the gospel; to tread under foot, trample on, i.e. to treat with insult and contempt: to desecrate the holy city by devastation and outrage

forty and two months – 3 ½ years, half of the time of the seven-year Tribulation.

We know that half way through the Tribulation, the antichrist will perform his “abomination of desolation” (Dan. 9:27).  Jesus said,

(Mat 24:15-16 KJV) When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:) {16} Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains:

Many Jews will flee the southern part of Israel (Judea) to Jordan.

Luke gives us a few more details about this time period as well:

(Luke 21:21-24 KJV) Then let them which are in Judaea flee to the mountains; and let them which are in the midst of it depart out; and let not them that are in the countries enter thereinto. {22} For these be the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled. {23} But woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck, in those days! for there shall be great distress in the land, and wrath upon this people. {24} And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.

The Jewish control of Jerusalem will be complete when they gain control of the temple mount and rebuild the temple. But with the abomination of desolation, and the Jews fleeing Judea, the city will be under the rule of Gentiles for 3 ½ years, the final 3 ½ years of the Tribulation.

:3 And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days, clothed in sackcloth.

power – the word is not in the Greek text.

witnessesmartus – a witness

they shall prophesypropheteuo – to prophesy, to be a prophet, speak forth by divine inspirations, to predict

a thousand two hundred and threescore days – the same period of time as 42 months, equivalent to 3 ½ years, half of the Tribulation. Their ministry will be in the last half of the Tribulation.

clothed inperiballo – to throw around, to put around; of garments, to clothe one

sackclothsakkos – a course cloth; worn by mourners; These two witnesses aren’t here to announce a big party. It would seem more likely that they’re here weeping and mourning over the judgment that’s around the corner for those who won’t believe.


Sometimes witnessing is sorrowful.

We'd like to think that every time we witness to someone about the Lord, that it should be with a great big smile on our face, with lots of warm hugs and stuff. We think that we need to be “happy and cheerful” for a person to want to come to the Lord.
Sometimes there is a place for weeping and grief when we witness. The truth about sin and hell ought be break our hearts concerning those that don't know the Lord.

:4 These are the two olive trees, and the two candlesticks standing before the God of the earth.

olive treeselaia – an olive tree; an olive, the fruit of an olive tree

candlesticksluchnia – a (candlestick) lamp stand, candelabrum

beforeenopion – in the presence of, before; of occupied place: in that place which is before, or over against, opposite, any one and towards which another turns his eyes

standinghistemi – to cause or make to stand, to place, put, set; to stand; perfect active participle

The picture of the olive trees and the candlesticks is referring back to a prophecy in Zechariah. Zerubbabel was the governor in charge of overseeing the construction of the second temple. He was discouraged that the work wasn’t being finished.

(Zec 4:1-6 KJV) And the angel that talked with me came again, and waked me, as a man that is wakened out of his sleep, {2} And said unto me, What seest thou? And I said, I have looked, and behold a candlestick all of gold, with a bowl upon the top of it, and his seven lamps thereon, and seven pipes to the seven lamps, which are upon the top thereof: {3} And two olive trees by it, one upon the right side of the bowl, and the other upon the left side thereof. {4} So I answered and spake to the angel that talked with me, saying, What are these, my lord? {5} Then the angel that talked with me answered and said unto me, Knowest thou not what these be? And I said, No, my lord. {6} Then he answered and spake unto me, saying, This is the word of the LORD unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts.

(Zec 4:11-14 KJV) Then answered I, and said unto him, What are these two olive trees upon the right side of the candlestick and upon the left side thereof? {12} And I answered again, and said unto him, What be these two olive branches which through the two golden pipes empty the golden oil out of themselves? {13} And he answered me and said, Knowest thou not what these be? And I said, No, my lord. {14} Then said he, These are the two anointed ones, that stand by the Lord of the whole earth.

Part of the temple worship involved the priests going into the Holy Place, cleaning, refilling, and then lighting the seven-branched oil lamp known as the menorah.

Every morning the priest would come into the Holy Place, put out the flames, clean the lamps, trim the wicks, and refill the lamps with oil. Then in the evening the priest would enter again into the Holy Place and light the lamp.

But the picture Zechariah sees is a lamp connected directly to two olive trees. This is a lamp that doesn’t need to be refilled. This is the “Energizer” menorah, it keeps going and going and going and going. Oil is a picture in the Scriptures of the Holy Spirit, and indeed Zerubbabel is encouraged that his work will be finished with the work of the Holy Spirit, not by his own efforts.

The olive trees are the “anointed ones” that would pour out the Spirit upon Zerubbabel. These anointed ones are also the witnesses of Revelation 11.


The ministry of the Holy Spirit.

Like Zerubbabel, we too have a work that God wants each of us to do. We can work hard with sweat and toil, but until we learn to let the Holy Spirit work, we won’t see the work done properly.

:5 And if any man will hurt them, fire proceedeth out of their mouth, and devoureth their enemies: and if any man will hurt them, he must in this manner be killed.

willthelo – to will, have in mind, intend; to be resolved or determined, to purpose; to desire, to wish

hurtadikeo –to act unjustly or wickedly, to sin,; to wrong some one, act wickedly towards him; to hurt, damage, harm

proceedethekporeuomai – to go forth, go out, depart; to come forth, to issue, to proceed; to flow forth; to project, from the mouth of one

devourethkatesthio – to consume by eating, to eat up, devour; by fire, to devour i.e. to utterly consume, destroy

be killedapokteino – to kill in any way whatever; to destroy, to allow to perish; to inflict mortal death

This seems to indicate that actual fire will come out of the actual mouths of these prophets. But I wonder if it might not be more that they will speak, and fire will come down on their enemies. This happened with the prophet Elijah. Elijah had a special “gift” in that when he prayed, “fire” (or, lightning) would fall from heaven.

When Elijah held a showdown with the prophets of Baal, this happened.  He prayed a simple prayer and fire came down from heaven and consumed his sacrifice (1Ki. 18:36-39)

Elijah took this “gift” and used it for protection. The king of Israel, Ahaziah, didn’t like Elijah, and sent a troop of fifty soldiers to get Elijah.

(2 Ki 1:10 KJV) And Elijah answered and said to the captain of fifty, If I be a man of God, then let fire come down from heaven, and consume thee and thy fifty. And there came down fire from heaven, and consumed him and his fifty.

:6 These have power to shut heaven, that it rain not in the days of their prophecy:

have – present active indicative, continuously having

powerexousia – power of choice, liberty of doing as one pleases; physical and mental power; the power of authority (influence) and of right (privilege)

to shutkleio – to shut, shut up; metaph. to cause the heavens to withhold rain

rainbrecho – to moisten, wet, water; to water with rain, to cause to rain, to pour the rain, to send down like rain

(rain)huetos – rain.  Literally, “that it moisten with rain

This too was something that was found in the life of Elijah (1Ki. 17:1). He prayed and it didn’t rain. For 3 ½ years.

(James 5:16-18 KJV) Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much. {17} Elias was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months. {18} And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth brought forth her fruit.


Your prayers have power too.

We shouldn’t look at these two witnesses and think that we could never be like that. Surely these are two special guys, but there are some things about them that we all need to learn from. They will pray and God will answer. We can pray and God will answer.
So pray.

:6 and have power over waters to turn them to blood, and to smite the earth with all plagues, as often as they will.

powerexousia – power of choice, liberty of doing as one pleases; physical and mental power; the power of authority (influence) and of right (privilege)

watershudor – water

to turnstrepho – to turn, turn around

smitepatasso – to strike gently: as a part or a member of the body; to stroke, smite: with the sword, to afflict, to visit with evils, etc. as with a deadly disease; to smite down, cut down, to kill, slay

plaguesplege – a blow, stripe, a wound; a public calamity, heavy affliction, plague,

they willthelo – to will, have in mind, intend; to be resolved or determined, to purpose; to desire, to wish

Just as the first two abilities of these prophets were similar to the unique ministry of Elijah, these two abilities are similar to the unique ministry of Moses.

Moses turned the waters in Egypt to blood. (Ex. 7:20)

(Exo 7:20 KJV)  And Moses and Aaron did so, as the LORD commanded; and he lifted up the rod, and smote the waters that were in the river, in the sight of Pharaoh, and in the sight of his servants; and all the waters that were in the river were turned to blood.

Moses brought various plagues on Egypt. (Ex. 9:13-14)

(Exo 9:13-14 KJV)  And the LORD said unto Moses, Rise up early in the morning, and stand before Pharaoh, and say unto him, Thus saith the LORD God of the Hebrews, Let my people go, that they may serve me. {14} For I will at this time send all my plagues upon thine heart, and upon thy servants, and upon thy people; that thou mayest know that there is none like me in all the earth.

Moses brought plagues of frogs (8:2); gnats (8:16); flies (8:4); livestock disease (9:3); boils (9:9); hail (9:18); locusts (10:4); darkness (10:21); and the death of the firstborn (11:5).

Who are these two prophets?

It is possible that these are simply two unique individuals who have been ordained for this particular task. But I think that it’s possible that these are two figures from history. There are several possibilities and basically any of them could be right. Some say they are the governor Zerubbabel and the high priest Joshua, both figures from the time of the building of the second temple. Some say it is Enoch and Elijah.

Some say it is Zerubbabel and Joshua.  Zerubbabel was a governor of Judah who helped rebuilt the temple after the return from Babylon, and Joshua was the high priest at the time.  This view comes from the fact that the prophecy in Zechariah about the two candlesticks was a prophecy for Zerubbabel (Zec. 4:6).  The problem here is that I think this is a misunderstanding of the picture in Zechariah 4.  Zerubbabel was to be helped by God’s Spirit, which would be poured out by these two “olive trees”.  He was helped by the witnesses, he wasn’t one of them.

Some say it is Enoch and Elijah.  Enoch was one of the early descendants of Adam.  Elijah was the great prophet.
The thinking behind this theory has to do with the fact that these were two men from the Old Testament who did not die.  Instead, they were both whisked off into heaven (Gen. 5:24; 2Ki. 2:11).  If God has appointed men to die “once” (Heb. 9:27), then these guys ought to come back so they can die.
Yet it could be possible that God would resurrect someone but in an imperfect body, and allow them to see death again.  God has done this before with the widow’s son in Nain, Lazarus, Dorcus, etc.  In other words, just because a person has died doesn’t mean they aren’t qualified to be one of these witnesses.

I think it is Moses and Elijah.

a) The first two sets of miraculous powers were things unique to Elijah. The second set of powers were things unique to Moses (turning water to blood, bringing plagues)
b) Malachi prophecies that Elijah is coming before the “day of the Lord”, but he also mentions Moses as well:
(Mal 4:4-5 KJV) Remember ye the law of Moses my servant, which I commanded unto him in Horeb for all Israel, with the statutes and judgments. {5} Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD:

In context, the entire chapter is talking about the “day of the Lord”, the time of the Tribulation period.

c) This isn’t going to be the first time that these two have been paired up. When Jesus appeared in His glorified state to Peter, James, and John, He appeared with two other individuals, Moses and Elijah (Mat. 17:3)
(Mat 17:3 KJV)  And, behold, there appeared unto them Moses and Elias talking with him.

There didn’t seem to be a problem here with Moses having died and Elijah not having died.  They both appeared with Jesus.

d) Both Moses and Elijah were used as vessels to pour God’s Spirit through upon others (like the olive trees). God took some of the Spirit that was on Moses and put it on the elders of Israel (Num. 11:17). Elisha wanted a “double portion” of the Spirit that was on Elijah (2Ki. 2:9).
d) The Scriptures are often referred to in the New Testament as “the Law and the Prophets”. What better two individuals to represent God’s best witness, the Scriptures, than Moses (the Law) and Elijah (the prophets).

:7 And when they shall have finished their testimony,

finishedteleo – to bring to a close, to finish, to end; to perform, execute, complete, fulfil, (so that the thing done corresponds to what has been said, the order, command etc.)

testimonymarturia – a testifying; what one testifies, testimony, i.e. before a judge

It seems that during the entire last 3 ½ years of the Tribulation, while the Jews have fled from Jerusalem, these two witnesses are untouchable. Nobody is allowed to harm them as they clearly give God’s witness to the world. But when they are finished with their job, their protection is gone.


God is in control of my death.

I find comfort in the fact that God is in control of when I die. He will not allow me to die “before my time”, but when my job on earth is done, that’s when I go home.
We do not need to fear that we are going to be hit by some out of control truck, or that some burglar is going to sneak into my house and murder me in my sleep, unless it is simply my time to go. God is in control.
Sometimes we mourn over people who die young, in their prime, but we need to realize that it simply means that their job was finished.

:7 the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them, and shall overcome them, and kill them.

beasttherion – an animal; a wild animal, wild beast, beast; metaph. a brutal, bestial man, savage, ferocious

This is not the same word “beast” used to describe the cherubim, the angelic beings before God’s throne in heaven.  The word for the cherubim is zoon, a living being.

bottomless pitabussos – bottomless; unbounded; the abyss; the pit; the immeasurable depth

This is that place we saw opened in chapter nine, with the smoke and the stinging locust creatures.

warpolemos – a war; a fight, a battle; a dispute, strife, quarrel

overcomenikao – to conquer; to carry off the victory, come off victorious

killapokteino – to kill in any way whatever; to destroy, to allow to perish

Who is this “beast”?

It is either the antichrist, or his empire. (Rev. 17:8)

We see this same description later –

(Rev 17:8 KJV)  The beast that thou sawest was, and is not; and shall ascend out of the bottomless pit, and go into perdition: and they that dwell on the earth shall wonder, whose names were not written in the book of life from the foundation of the world, when they behold the beast that was, and is not, and yet is.
This beast in chapter 17 could be viewed either as the individual known as the antichrist, or as his empire.
If we look at it as the antichrist’s empire, the idea is that Rome was, then was not, and there will be a form of it in the latter days.
If we look at it as the antichrist himself, we would think in terms of the demonic spirit that will one day possess this man.  The idea is that this demonic spirit once possessed someone (perhaps Nero), then was bound in the pit, and will one day possess the antichrist.

:8 And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified.

dead bodiesptoma – from pipto, “to fall”; a fall, downfall; that which has fallen; the fallen body of one dead or slain, a corpse, a carcase

John is talking about Jerusalem, where Jesus was crucified.

Comparing Jerusalem to “Sodom” is to call it a place of sin.  Jerusalem has been called “Sodom”

(Isa 1:10 KJV)  Hear the word of the LORD, ye rulers of Sodom; give ear unto the law of our God, ye people of Gomorrah.
(Jer 23:14 KJV)  I have seen also in the prophets of Jerusalem an horrible thing: they commit adultery, and walk in lies: they strengthen also the hands of evildoers, that none doth return from his wickedness: they are all of them unto me as Sodom, and the inhabitants thereof as Gomorrah.

The comparing of Jerusalem to “Egypt” is to say that the people have gone back to the “old life”, the life of bondage, a life of slavery to sin.

:9 And they of the people and kindreds and tongues and nations shall see their dead bodies three days and an half, and shall not suffer their dead bodies to be put in graves.

shall seeblepo – to see, discern, of the bodily eye; metaph. to see with the mind’s eye

peoplelaos – a people, people group, tribe, nation, all those who are of the same stock and language; of a great part of the population gathered together anywhere

kindredphule – a tribe; a nation, people

tonguesglossa – the tongue, a member of the body, an organ of speech; the language or dialect used by a particular people distinct from that of other nations

nationsethnos – a multitude (whether of men or of beasts) associated or living together; a multitude of individuals of the same nature or genus; a tribe, nation, people group

three days and an half – Why this length of time?  Perhaps it is to be a reflection of Jesus’ resurrection.  Perhaps it is to be a reflection of their 3 ½ years of ministry.

in graves – even today in the Mid East, when a person dies, they are buried immediately. They don’t wait a couple of days as we do in the United States. To not bury a body for 3 ½ days was and still is a highly unusual thing.

Could it be that this is another pointer to our modern times, with satellite news transmission making it possible that the whole world could watch these events?

We tend to think that this could only be fulfilled with today’s satellite transmission, but not actually so.  Jerusalem has always been a place where people from all around the world come to worship God.  On the day of Pentecost,

(Acts 2:5 KJV)  And there were dwelling at Jerusalem Jews, devout men, out of every nation under heaven.

Though I think that today’s satellite news services bring a new meaning to this verse, I wonder if it isn’t possible that this might somehow fall at a time of one of the Jewish feasts, when Jews might be in Jerusalem from around the world.  Just wondering.

Note:  John will use this same grouping of four words (peoples, kindreds, tongues, nations) four places in Revelation 5:9; 7:9; 11:9; and 14:6.

:10 And they that dwell upon the earth shall rejoice over them, and make merry, and shall send gifts one to another; because these two prophets tormented them that dwelt on the earth.

dwellkatoikeo – to dwell, settle; to dwell in, inhabit

earthge – arable land; the ground, the earth as a standing place; the earth as a whole; the earth as opposed to the heavens

shall rejoicechairo – to rejoice, be glad; to rejoice exceedingly; to be well, thrive

make merryeuphraino (“well” + “mind”) – to gladden, make joyful; to be glad, to be merry, to rejoice; to rejoice in, be delighted with a thing

send gifts – I guess UPS and FedEx will be making some money on this new worldwide holiday, “Dead Prophets Day”.

tormentedbasanizo – to test (metals) by the touchstone, which is a black siliceous stone used to test the purity of gold or silver by the colour of the streak produced on it by rubbing it with either metal; to question by applying torture; to torture; ; to vex with grievous pains (of body or mind), to torment; to be harassed, distressed


Rejoice in the truth.

For the people of the earth, these two guys weren’t much fun to have around. They made things miserable for the people. They would tell the world the truth.
We don’t always like it when people tell us something we don’t want to hear, even if it’s the truth. But as Christians, we need to “rejoice in the truth”.
(1 Cor 13:6 KJV) (Love) Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;
We don’t particularly mind if other people learn the truth about themselves, in fact sometimes we kind of like to be the one to tell people about their problems, but it’s kind of hard when I’m the one that I’m learning the truth about.
World War II produced many heroes. One such man was Butch O'Hare. He was a fighter pilot assigned to an aircraft carrier in the South Pacific. One day his entire squadron was sent on a mission. After he was airborne, he looked at his fuel gauge and realized that someone had forgotten to top off his fuel tank. He would not have enough fuel to complete his mission and get back to his ship. His flight leader told him to return to the carrier. Reluctantly he dropped out of formation and headed back to the fleet. As he was returning to his carrier, he saw something that turned his blood cold. A squadron of Japanese Zeroes were speeding their way toward the American fleet. The American fighters were gone on a sortie and the fleet was all but defenseless. He couldn't reach his squadron and bring them back in time to save the fleet. Nor, could he warn the fleet of the approaching danger. There was only one thing to do. He must somehow divert them from the fleet. Laying aside all thoughts of personal safety, he dove into the formation of Japanese planes. Wing-mounted 50 caliber's blazed as he charged in, attacking one surprised enemy plane and then another. Butch wove in and out of the now broken formation and fired at as many planes as possible until finally all his ammunition was spent. Undaunted, he continued the assault. He dove at the Zeroes, trying to at least clip off a wing or tail, in hopes of damaging as many enemy planes as possible and rendering them unfit to fly. He was desperate to do anything he could to keep them from reaching the American ships. Finally, the exasperated Japanese squadron took off in another direction. Deeply relieved, Butch O'Hare and his tattered fighter limped back to the carrier. Upon arrival he reported in and related the event surrounding his return. The film from the camera mounted on his plane told the tale. It showed the extent of Butch's daring attempt to protect his fleet. He was recognized as a hero and given one of the nation's highest military honors. And today, O'Hare Airport in Chicago is named in tribute to the courage of this great man.
Some years earlier there was a man in Chicago called Easy Eddie. At that time, Al Capone virtually owned the city. Capone wasn't famous for anything heroic. His exploits were anything but praiseworthy. He was however, notorious for enmeshing the city of Chicago in everything from bootlegged booze to prostitution to order. Easy Eddie was Capone's lawyer and for a good reason. He was very good! In fact, his skill at legal maneuvering kept Big Al out of jail for a long time. To show his appreciation, Capone paid him very well. Not only was the money big; Eddie got special dividends. For instance, he and his family occupied a fenced in mansion with live-in help and all of the conveniences of the day. The estate was so large that it filled an entire Chicago city block. Yes, Eddie lived the high life of the Chicago mob and gave little consideration to the atrocity that went on around him. Eddy did have one soft spot, however. He had a son that he loved dearly. Eddy saw to it that his young son had the best of everything; clothes, cars, and a good education. Nothing was withheld. Price was no object. And, despite his involvement with organized crime, Eddie even tried to teach him right from wrong. Yes, Eddie tried to teach his son to rise above his own sordid life. He wanted him to be a better man than he was. Yet, with all his wealth and influence, there were two things that Eddie couldn't give his son. Two things that Eddie sacrificed to the Capone mob that he could not pass on to his beloved son; a good name and a good example. One day, Easy Eddie reached a difficult decision. Offering his son a good name was far more important than all the riches he could lavish on him. He had to rectify all the wrong that he had done. He would go to the authorities and tell the truth about Scar-face Al Capone. He would try to clean up his tarnished name and offer his son some semblance of integrity. To do this he must testify against The Mob, and he knew that the cost would be great. But more than anything, he wanted to be an example to his son. He wanted to do his best to make restoration and hopefully have a good name to leave his son. So, he testified. Within the year, Easy Eddie's life ended in a blaze of gunfire on a lonely Chicago street. He had given his son the greatest gift he had to offer at the greatest price he would ever pay.
I know what you're thinking. What do these two stories have to do with one another? . . . . . Well you see, Butch O'Hare was Easy Eddie's son.

Sometimes it hurts deeply to face the truth.  But it’s worth it.  These two witnesses are men intent on telling truth.  The world won’t like it, but it will need it.

:11 And after three days and an half the Spirit of life from God entered into them, and they stood upon their feet; and great fear fell upon them which saw them.

fearphobos – fear, dread, terror

greatmegas – great

which sawtheoreo – to be a spectator, look at, behold; to see

I’m sure it’s going to be quite spooky. These men will have been a big pain in the neck to the whole world, and once they’re dead, the world breathes a sigh of relief. They get to thinking that these warnings of judgment that the prophets have warned them of were just a bunch of nonsense. And then the guys open their eyes and stand up.


Don’t run from God.

You may think that you can just shut your eyes or plug your ears and the things that God is trying to get through to your heart will just go away.
You may elude the people that are trying to tell you the truth, but one day you will stand before God, and you won’t be able to run anywhere. Stop running.

:12 And they heard a great voice from heaven saying unto them, Come up hither. And they ascended up to heaven in a cloud; and their enemies beheld them.

voicephone – a sound, a tone; a voice; speech

Come upanabaino – ascend; to go up; to rise, mount, be borne up, spring up

they ascendedanabaino – ascend; to go up; to rise, mount, be borne up, spring up

cloudnephele – a cloud

beheldtheoreo – to be a spectator, look at, behold; to see

:13 And the same hour was there a great earthquake, and the tenth part of the city fell, and in the earthquake were slain of men seven thousand: and the remnant were affrighted, and gave glory to the God of heaven.

One tenth of Jerusalem will crumble in this earthquake. Seven thousand people will die.

remnantloipoy – remaining, the rest; some translations have “the rest” here, but I think the term “remnant” may be appropriate. This term is often used in the Bible to refer to the few believers that are left in a situation.

Whereas in some of the tribulation, men are unrepentant, apparently in this situation, there are some who turn to fear God and give Him glory.

This is the correct response to a situation like this!


Let your troubles turn you TO God.

These believers aren’t exactly holding a party, because there’s a sense of fear and awe as to what God is doing.
They are giving God glory in their tough circumstances.