Scripture reading: Jeremiah 9:15
Revelation 8:11, “And the name of the star is called WORMWOOD: and the third part of the waters became wormwood; and many men died of the waters, because they were made bitter.”
“The star” in the Scriptures represents a son of God, someone who has climbed into the heights with God. In this passage “the star is called WORMWOOD.” “Many men died” because of Wormwood. The word “Wormwood” is a spiritual name. This name “Wormwood” is given to this star because of the NATURE of the work that he will do. I say Mr. Wormwood is at work this very moment. The Lord uses this phrase prophetically to describe the condition spoken of by the prophets in the Old Testament – the bitterness of the waters that the people would drink. As we know, water, especially fresh water, represents the Word of God. The SALT WATER, or the sea, represents the nations. This water, in Revelation 8:11, that the people are drinking, is like taking into your soul a bitter, poisonous substance.
We can get proper understanding from Jeremiah 9:15, “Therefore thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; Behold, I will feed them, even this people, with wormwood, and give them water of gall to drink.” When Jesus was on the cross and cried out, “I thirst,” they gave Him gall to drink. Gall was referred to as vinegar in the Old Testament. We are dealing with word translations. It is translated in the Old Testament as wormwood, bitter water. It was poisonous water.
In Revelation, we read that they would receive poisonous water and it would cause them to die – bitter water. This is definitely referring to the Word of God or the Scriptures being twisted to cause the people to be deceived, believing they are receiving from God and serving God when actually it is the work of the enemy and not the Word of God at all.
This bitterness comes from the rivalry of the churches. Denomination is a division which splits people of God into various factions and segments. God speaks against this. Paul also spoke against it saying, “Is Christ divided?” (1 Corinthians 1:13a). Some were saying they were of Paul and some were saying they were of Apollos. Paul said, “Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos?” (1 Corinthians 3:5a). God wants us to be one. The greatest thing on the heart of God is that we should be one, even as He and Christ Jesus are one. We are being divided by denominations. This one says that he is from this denomination, the other one says that he is from that denomination.
If God called someone and gave him a message and he happened to be in one church, he could not go to the other church to preach because they do not want him. They want their own evangelists and their own apostles. It turns out to be a failure in the church, A TURNING BACK FROM GOD, a rebellion. That rebellion is now proceeding in the church.
2 Thessalonians 2:3, “Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away (apostasy, rebellion) first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition.” This rebellion is happening in the churches and the churches are not seeing it. This verse in Thessalonians tells us that there will be a “falling away” in the church. People will be deceived and not know that they are deceived. They will walk in the deception which they were taught in their denomination. For if Christ should return now, He could not return for a denomination. He would have to return for the people whose hearts are tuned to Him.
(Excerpt from The Book of Revelation, Volume 1, pg. 161-162)
Thought for today: Let us turn from the bitter waters of mixture and drink of the pure water of the Word of God!