And I saw another angel flying in midheaven, having an eternal gospel to preach to those who live on the earth, and to every nation and tribe and tongue and people; and he said with a loud voice, “Fear God, and give Him glory, because the hour of His judgment has come; worship Him who made the heaven and the earth and sea and springs of waters.” (Revelation 14:6–7)
The angel’s message to sinners is “Fear God, and give Him glory.” He will call the people of the world to change their allegiance from the beast to the Lamb. He will urge them to no longer fear, reverence, and worship Satan and Antichrist, but instead to fear, reverence, and honor God by turning to His Son. As the sovereign ruler of the universe, God alone—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit—has the right to be worshiped (19:10; 22:9; Isa. 42:8; 48:11; Matt. 4:10).
The Bible repeatedly calls people to fear God. In Psalm 111:10 the psalmist declared that “the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom” (cf. Prov. 1:7; 9:10), while Proverbs 23:17 commands, “Live in the fear of the Lord always.” A wise father counsels his son to “fear the Lord and the king” (Prov. 24:21), while Peter exhorted his readers to “Honor all people, love the brotherhood, fear God, honor the king” (1 Pet. 2:17). In Matthew 10:28 Jesus warned, “Do not fear those who kill the body but are unable to kill the soul; but rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” To fear God is to live in the reality of His holiness, His sovereignty, and His judgment of sin. It is to love God, respect Him, reverence Him, adore Him, hold Him in awe, and worship Him. And that can only be done by loving His Son the Savior (John 5:23).
In addition to fearing God, men are to give Him glory. This requirement goes to the very essence of the problem of unregenerate people, who “even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks” (Rom. 1:21). Refusing to give God glory is at the core of man’s prideful rebellion.
Unbelievers will be called to fear and glorify God immediately because the hour of His judgment has come. Opportunity is fading fast; the bowl judgments are about to be poured out, to be followed shortly by the return of the Lord Jesus Christ to judge the unbelieving world (Matt. 25:31–46).
The angel gives one final reason for sinners to turn from Antichrist to God, proclaiming that people should worship Him who made the heaven and the earth and sea and springs of waters. The created universe both offers proof of God’s existence and provides grounds for worshiping Him. Because God reveals Himself in His creation, men are without excuse for not acknowledging Him:
The angel’s stern warning is that the Creator is also the Judge; He is the one people should fear and worship, rather than Satan and Antichrist. As the world teeters on the brink of final disaster, God graciously offers people another chance to repent. He will snatch those who heed the warning from the fire of judgment (cf. Jude 23), and transfer them from Satan’s kingdom of darkness into the soon to be manifest kingdom of His Son (Col. 1:13).