We learned in the first eight verses that there will be souls saved in the tribulation period. We have seen that the first group to be saved are the 144,000 Jewish men, 12,000 from each of the 12 tribes of Israel. We saw that they are sealed prior to the mid tribulation peroid. they are sealed because Satan through antichrist will try to annihalate Israel in the last half of the tribulation. WE see this group referred to in Isa. 49:10-12 and in 60:1-3.
A second group that are saved in the tribulation will be a group of gentiles, Verse 9 tells us about this group, a great multitude from all nations. I do not believe that this group has any in it that have rejected Christ during this present church age, 2 Thess. 2: 10. Those who have rejected the love of the truth in this age are without hope in the age to come. This multitude hear the gospel for the first time from the 144,000 saved of Israel.
The third group of redeemed people are the Church saints seen in heaven as the 24 elders sitting around the throne in Rev. 4:4.
Notice the gentile trib. saints in verse 9.
FIRST THEIR POSITION they are standing before the throne, whereas the church saints are seated on thrones in Rev. 4:4.
SECONDLY THEIR PURITY we see in verse 9 & 13 they are in white robes. They have been washed in the blood of the Lamb, verse 14. There is always only one way of salvation in any dispension, to come to Christ by faith and be washed in the His Blood, though in Old Testament times the full understanding of the atonement of Christ was not always there, yet they trusted God to provide a sacrifice, nevertherless God can only forgive sin on the basis of Christ's sacrifice. So their faith was in the promise of God. May I ask you, have you been washed in the blood of the Lamb? Have you recognized your sin and your lost condition and your need of a savior and with that realization have you come to Christ in repentance and faith? You are lost and without hope in this world and in the world to come until and unless you are born again in this way, John 3:3.
THIRDLY THEIR PROTECTION palm branches express the deliverance, John 12:12,13. They are celebrating the triumph of having been brought through that terrible tribulation period. Roman warriors wore garlands of palm leaves when they triumphed in battle. In verse 10 we see their rejoicing and praise to God for their deliverence. They rcognized the source of their salvation and deliverence. They are not silent, how we ought to be exercised in praise to God for His provision for our triumph over sin!
FOURTHLY THEIR PRAISE we see their praise in verse 12. they are praising God. Only those who have been saved from an eternity in hell with the realization of all the blessings GOD has yet for us, only those can praise God with great joy and thanksgiving.
FIFTHLY THEIR PRIVILEGE "Therefore are they before the throne of God, and serve him day and night in his temple: and he that sitteth on the throne shall dwell among them". Dr. Ironside says: "That is, I take it, the millenial temple, which is to be built in the land in that coming day. There will be no night in Heaven. The expression can only refer, in this connection, to the temple on earth." They will be eternally grateful that they had opportunity to suffer for Christ in the tribulation period.
LASTLY THEIR PROVISION "They shall hunger no more, neither thirst anymore, neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat. For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes." verses 16-17. How wonderful! The Lamb will lead and feed and provide for His own. How unspeakably glorious, for all of eternity. we see the amazing contrast between what antichrist did to them and what God does for them. Notice the love and kindness of God for His own, "and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes." You can, if you wish, take the fleeting pleasures of this world, you can if you wish, serve Satan, But not me, i'll serve the Lord, i'll follow Christ, I'll be His willing slave forever, knowing that he will bless me for all eternity.