And after these things I saw four angels standing on the four corners of the earth, holding the four winds of the earth, that the wind should not blow on the earth, nor on the sea, nor on any tree. And I saw another angel ascending from the east, having the seal of the living God: and he cried with a loud voice to the four angels, to whom it was given to hurt the earth and the sea, Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads. And I heard the number of them which were sealed: and there were sealed an hundred and forty and four thousand
of all the tribes of the children of Israel. – Revelation 7:1-3.
The last seven epistles in the Bible; James, first and second Peter, the three epistles of John and Jude's epistle, are assembled together because, unlike the previous epistles which are directed to specific churches, these epistles are directed to the church in general. Therefore, in James’ epistle he addresses the entire Christian church as “the twelve tribes” (James 1:1).
This is highly significant, because the most accepted and common interpretation of the twelve tribes mentioned in Revelation chapter seven is that they are literal Jews, which was obviously not the view of our first century instructors. Justin Martyr concurs in his "Dialogue with Trypho, chapter 135, verse 14 - "As, therefore, Christ is the Israel and the Jacob, even so we, who have been quarried out from the bowels of Christ, are the true Israelitic race."
The first century church saw themselves as true Jews, that is, they did not replace the Jews, they become Jews through faith in the Messiah Jesus.
In ancient Israel the first of the firstfruits were marked with a red string to designate them as an offering to the Lord and were harvested first to be taken to the temple. In chapter fourteen, the 144,000 described in the seventh chapter of Revelation, are also called the “firstfruits.” – These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and the Lamb - Revelation 14:4.
Thus this designated remnant is sealed or marked, through their faith in Messiah Jesus to be a firstfruits offering to the Lord.
As I have previously mentioned, It is a common interpretation of chapter seven that the 144,000 are literal Jews that will be testifying during the time of the great tribulation, while the Gentile believers have all been conveniently raptured from the unprecedented time of trouble that is to come upon the entire earth. However, as we have just seen, according to the precedent set in Israel’s religious services, the wheat that is “marked” is harvested first. - Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads.
This sealing, or marking is for their preservation. We see an illustration of this in Ezekiel 9:4 – And the Lord said unto him, ‘Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and cry for all the abominations that be done in the midst thereof.’ The ones who were marked by the angel were protected from the slaughter to come.
This application, the sealing being for the purpose of preservation, is confirmed in Revelation 9:4; those who have been “sealed” are protected from demonic attack. – And it was commanded them that they should not hurt the grass of the earth, neither any green thing, neither any tree; but only those men which have not the seal of God in their foreheads. The command to not hurt any green thing, which includes grass and trees; represents that which has life, or sap - those who are abiding in the vine of Christ are joined and sealed to Him by the Holy Spirit and are living. Symbolically they are viewed as “green” and are classified with those that are sealed by God and cannot be possessed and controlled by the demonic forces that are being unleashed in chapter nine.
The numbers in Revelation are highly symbolic and because they are contained in visions, cannot be interpreted that literally in most cases, so we can be dealing with a much larger number of individuals. The number 144,000 is in multiples of twelve, the number that is commonly thought to represent the chosen.
It is asserted by many scholars, that the 144,000 are literal Jews, but we are dealing with visions, and many things contained within these visions can represent something else. In chapter one, verse twenty, stars represent angels and candlesticks represent churches. Likewise, the tribes of the children of Israel described in chapter seven represent the Philadelphian remnant that is to be kept or preserved from “the hour” - Revelation 3:10 - and this remnant consists of both Jews and Gentiles as we shall see.
In verses five through eight, the twelve tribes are listed, with one important omission - the tribe of Dan is replaced by Manasses. This is very significant. What is God trying to tell us here? One obvious conclusion is that these are not the literal tribes of Israel we are being shown, because Manasses was never considered to be one of the original twelve tribes. Also, if the Lord had wanted to tell us that these are the literal tribes, all of the original twelve tribes would be listed, but they are not.
In the book of Daniel, the prophet is shown some of the things that will happen to his people in the last days (Daniel 10:14). Daniel’s people, the Jews, are commonly referred to as the “elect” by most Biblical interpreters, but do the Scriptures actually teach that the term “elect” refers to only the Jews?
In Colossians 3:11, 12, Paul says that those who have put on the new man are - "neither Greek nor Jew....but Christ is all and in all. Put on therefore as the elect of God..." - the divine nature. And the Apostle Paul, endured - all things for the elect’s sake – 11 Timothy 2:10. Therefore Gentiles who have obeyed the Gospel are viewed as the "elect" also - "Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ..." - I Peter 1:2. - Here the apostle Peter has told us how we become the elect.
For you are all children of God by faith in Christ Jesus – Galatians 4:26.
For He is our peace, who has made both one…Ephesians 3:14 – For through Him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father. Now therefore you are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God – Ephesians 3:18,19.
There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for you are all one in Christ Jesus. GET THIS – And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise – Galatians 3:26,28,29. Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham – Galatians 3:7. Daniel’s people (Daniel 10:14), all those whose names have been written in the book (Daniel 12:1) - the Lamb's book of life.
Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all, (As it is written, I have made thee a father of many nations) – Romans 4:16,17.
God "put no difference" between the Jew and Gentile because all are purified by faith - Acts 15:9.
The first verse of the chapter 65 in the book of Isaiah begins with one of the prophecies concerning the coming of the Gentiles to God which was fulfilled through Jesus. – I am sought of them that asked not for Me; I am found of them that sought Me not: I said, Behold Me, behold Me, unto a nation that was not called by My name – Isaiah 65:1.
God then begins to upbraid His own people, the Jews, for falling away from Him in verses 2-7, and He tells them that they will reap what they have sown – “I will measure their former work into their bosom” - verse7. In verse eight He tells of coming judgment, but He will not destroy them all because “a blessing is in it” – “a seed” - which will come out of Jacob, “an inheritor of My mountains: (the Messiah, Jesus) and My elect shall inherit it, (Him) and My servants shall dwell there.” This elect are – “My people that have sought Me” - Isaiah 65:10. This is the definition of God’s elect.
God continues in verses 11-15 to contrast the blessings of those who have sought Him with those who have chosen those things that have offended Him –
But ye are they that forsake the LORD, that forget my holy mountain, that prepare a table for that troop, and that furnish the drink offering unto that number. Therefore will I number you to the sword, and ye shall all bow down to the slaughter: because when I called, ye did not answer; when I spake, ye did not hear; but did evil before mine eyes, and did choose that wherein I delighted not. Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD, Behold, my servants shall eat, but ye shall be hungry: behold, my servants shall drink, but ye shall be thirsty: behold, my servants shall rejoice, but you shall be ashamed. Behold, my servants shall sing for joy of heart, but ye shall cry for sorrow of heart, and shall howl for vexation of spirit. And ye shall leave your name for a curse unto my chosen: for the Lord GOD shall slay thee, and call his servants by another name:” – Isaiah 65:11-15
Bible scholars note that “the other name” is a prophecy of the time when believers in the God of Israel will be called Christians.
The prophecy then does a fast forward to the time in the future when God creates a new heaven and a new earth and a prophecy of the millennial reign of Christ, which occurs between the time that satan is bound for one thousand years - Rev.19:20:3. It is a time of peace when “The wolf and the Lamb shall feed together,” His people will dwell safely and His “elect will long enjoy the work of their hands” - Verse 22.
So we can see from this chapter, along with the Apostle’s instructions, that God includes the Gentiles in His category of the elect and they are viewed as one with the remnant, the elect who have “sought Him” - Verse 10, confirming the New Testament’s concept of what it is to be a true Jew - someone who is completely separated to the Lord through faith in the Messiah Jesus.
In Romans 11, the Apostle Paul refers to the Gentiles as a “wild olive tree.” He tells us that the Gentiles were grafted into partake of the root(heritage/covenants) and the fatness (blessings) of The Olive Tree, meaning that we are now considered to be one with the Jews.
For if the firstfruit be holy, the lump is also holy: and if the root be holy, so are the branches. And if some of the branches be broken off, and thou, being a wild olive tree, were grafted in among them, and with them partakest of the root and fatness of the olive tree; -Romans 11:16,17
Gentiles are one with the “firstfruits,” the remnant according to the election of grace. -Even so then at this present time also there is a remnant according to the election of grace - Hebrews 11:5.
Note that the Apostle says that some have been broken off because of their unbelief – some not all. We do not replace the Jew, this is not “replacement theology,” but we become Jews, separated to God, because through Christ we have been "grafted into" the holy remnant olive tree of God's elect - Romans 11:17.
For they are not all Israel which are of Israel - Romans 9:6.- Jews who say they are Jews and are not – Revelation 3:9. - For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh: But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly – (For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision avails anything, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature – Galatians 6:15) - and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God – Romans 2:28,29. And as many as walk according to this rule, peace be on them and the Israel of God – Galatians 6:16.
Jews and Gentiles that are one in Messiah Jesus are the Israel of God – the elect.
Israel has not obtained what he seeks for; but the election has obtained it, – (My people that have sought Me – Isaiah 65:10) - and the rest were blinded - Romans 11:7
We have just been shown that there are two olive trees, one Gentile, one Jewish, joined as one. Let us keep in mind the image of the wild olive tree being grafted into the remnant olive tree, as we contemplate Manasses being grafted into the remnant in Chapter seven.
Manasses was the fruit of Joseph’s union with a Gentile. The wife that was given to him by Pharaoh was actually the daughter of a pagan high priest - (Genesis 41:45). It was strictly forbidden by God for His people to marry pagan wives, yet because of his circumstances; Joseph was joined to a Gentile.
The entire story of Joseph is a beautiful typology of the Gospel of Christ. Like Joseph, Jesus was betrayed by His brethren, but because of that betrayal Jesus became the provision for the salvation of the world. Joseph said to his brothers - “Now therefore be not grieved, nor angry with yourselves, that you have sold me here: for God did send me before you to preserve life. And God sent me before you to preserve you posterity in this earth, and to save your lives by a great deliverance. So it was not you that sent me here, but God.” – Genesis 45:5, 7, 8. For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life – John 3:16.
Joseph’s marriage to an Egyptian is a prophetic picture of a time when Jesus would gather the Gentiles as one with the Jews and there would be one fold and one shepherd - (John 10:16). When Jacob blessed Joseph before he died he told him that his sons and any of his offspring that he would sire after them would be included in the inheritance of Israel – (Genesis 48:5,6).
The Wild Olive Tree, the Gentile believers have been grafted into the Remnant Olive tree and the two trees are one in Messiah Jesus. Therefore, the 144,000 represent Jews and Gentiles joined as one – the firstfruits. The Danites are “broken off” and replaced by Joseph’s seed Mannasses, which is symbolic of the Gentiles that have been joined to Israel through faith in the Messiah Jesus.
The breaking off of the Danites represents the cutting away of the branches who have not believed that Jesus is the Messiah – the Jews who say they are Jews and are not. The Danites were given an inheritance with the rest of Israel but could not obtain it. They were not strong enough to overcome their enemies, and they were driven into the mountains by the Amorites (Judges 1:34). They eventually conquered Laish, a weaker, defenseless city and renamed it Dan, (Judges 18:27-29) and built their religion around a stolen idol – verse 30.
Their story emerges in the Old Testament Scriptures at a time in Israel when everyone did according to what was right in their own eyes (Judges 17:6). This is symbolic of the spiritual condition that can also disqualify a believer from the firstfruits remnant category of Philadelphian believers. Samson was also a Danite, who did great exploits, but because he could not restrain himself from sinning, this spiritually weak strong man, died in his tribulation. His unchecked lust resulted in the loss of his sight which is symbolic of his spiritual blindness. There are Christians like Samson, the “Samsonites” that must learn to discard the “baggage” that has kept them from being included in the firstfruit, Philadelphian remnant category.
The remnant is modeled after those who are sealed in Ezekiel 9:4, the ones who “sigh and cry” over the abominations that are done in the church. Samsonites are not mourning over the sins in the church, they are partaking of them. Therefore this camp will be joined with those “Jews who say they are Jews and are not” to behold the remnant seed that God has promised to be kept from “The Hour” - (Revelation 3:10).
It is the will of God that all of His children be classified as His firstfiruits. Jesus said, “Pray that you are worthy to escape” – Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man - Luke 21:36. We are actually being told to pray for the renewal and revival of the entire Christian church. Seek righteousness, seek meekness and perhaps you shall be ‘hidden’ in the day of the Lord – Zephaniah 2:3.
As we willingly begin to yield to the Holy Spirit within us that is working to conform us into Jesus’ image, then we will learn that with God all things are possible (Luke 1:37) and that we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us (Philippians 4:13).
The description of the “firstfruits” is embellished for us in Revelation 14:4, 5 – These are they which were not defiled with women, for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb wherever He goes. These were redeemed from among men, being firstfruits unto God and the Lamb. And in their mouth was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God.
To be guileless is to be like a child, and the remnant has come to Christ as He has told us, to come as little children.
Another description of the “Remnant” is found in Zephaniah 3:12,13 – I will also leave in the midst of thee an afflicted and poor people, and they shall trust in the name of the Lord. The remnant of Israel shall not do iniquity, nor speak lies; neither shall a deceitful tongue be found in their mouth: for they shall feed and lie down, and none shall make them afraid. The Lord is their shepherd.
This group is not seeking worldly riches, they are poor by the world’s standards, yet rich, because they have learned that their treasure is in heaven. They are obediently following their Shepherd wherever His Spirit leads them. They are living holy lives, because they are yielding to the Holy Spirit who lives inside them and have “not been defiled with women.” This does not mean that they are literal virgins. Remember the bride that Jesus comes for at His second coming is referred to as a “virgin,” too (Matthew 25:1). This simply means that they have committed no sexual sin, or have fully repented of their sin and are not continuing in it. They practice true “religion: as described by James (James 1:27) and have separated themselves from the world and are wholly separated to God through the Messiah, Jesus. These are the Lord’s people who “know righteousness, the people in whose heart is My law "– Isaiah 51:7. These are the circumcised in heart, true Jews.
Spiritually, they have retained a first century spirit-filled zeal and passion for their bridegroom and have not neglected to make preaching the Gospel their primary goal and purpose, thus they have not fallen into the error of the Ephesians. They have refused to embrace aberrant doctrine; they have not preferred the precepts of men above the word of God and married those foreign wives, like the church of Pergamos. And the remnant has rejected Jezebel’s advances and not been compromised by her enticements as the church in Thyatira. The firstfruits would choose martyrdom rather than deny that Jesus is the only way to the Father, and their names remain embedded in the Lamb’s book of life as an example to those of Sardis, and the passion of their union with their Bridegroom, leaves them with nothing in common with the lukewarm Laodiceans.
In Chapter fourteen, where this description of the remnant is found, we are told that it is the hour of His judgment – the great tribulation. And here we see the remnant elect of God, the 144,000, in a position of safety and protection with the Lord on Mount Zion, because these “sealed” ones are “the inheritors of His mountains” (Isaiah 65:9). They sought Him and found Him in the intimacy this mountain represents, the symbolic mountain where Moses and Jesus partook of this same intimacy with the Father. The church this remnant has become receives the Philadelphian promise to be kept from this hour. These are the ones who have kept his word and not denied his name (Revelation 3:8).
As we look back over Chapter seven, it becomes a wheat field and the harvest is getting ripe. We see the entire church of God growing together as the time of the end is approaching. The firstfruits are sealed, and being prepared for their removal. They are enduring tribulation for the testimony they hold and in chapter eleven, just before “The Hour” in chapter fourteen, which is the great tribulation, the two olive trees, the candlesticks, the remnant bride that has not quenched the Sprit of her Beloved, listens to His Still Small Voice shout “Come up here.” In divine ecstatic rapture, the bride is joined with her bridegroom on mount Zion, the mountain of intimacy.
Much of the harvest remains to be gathered into His embrace in a future that will be shortened (Matthew 24:22) for this elect that remains when the Bridegroom comes a second time to reign on earth, after the great tribulation. The Danites, the Jews who say they are Jews and are not, will turn to Messiah at last, and those who remain of the five churches that have been left behind to endure the hour will have learned that God blesses those who obey Him and they will be gathered in victory at last, received as the Lord’s elect.
"Immediately after the tribulation of those days - (For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be - Matthew 24:21, Daniel 12:1.) - shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, (the fallen angels, “stars” lose their power- the "heaven" here, as observed by the context of the text, is the upper atmosphere, not God's realm.) and the powers (demonic forces) of the heavens shall be shaken: And then shall appear the sign of the Son of Man in heaven (the cross) and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of Man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory: - Matthew 24:30.
And He shall send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other - Matthew 24:31, Mark 13:27.
The Apostle Paul, in his letter to the church at Thessalonica teaches this event from the words of Jesus to the believers there, which included “a great multitude” of Gentiles – Acts 17:4. Paul tells them that they are to be included in this gathering of the “Elect” at the second coming of Jesus –
"For the Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first (the first resurrection - Revelation 20:4,5 - 'The Resurrection of the Just;' Luke 14:14.) "Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord" - I Thessalonians 4: 16,17.
"Behold, I will show you a mystery; we shall not all sleep (die) but we shall all be changed. In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed "- I Corinthians 15:51,52.
When Jesus was asked by His disciples what would be the signs of His coming and the end of the age in Matthew twenty-four, Jesus made His answer apply to the coming destruction of Jerusalem which prophecy was fulfilled in 70 AD; and also to the “Great Tribulation” which He said would occur before His second coming. While Jesus was addressing the Jews at that time, He was also making His discourse applicable to the church age. While the destruction of Jerusalem would affect the Jews and would be a local catastrophe, the “Great Tribulation” would come upon the entire world, affecting all the nations.
We see the model for this prophecy also declared by the prophet Jeremiah. Like Jesus, Jeremiah was also prophesizing a local event for the Jews which was the coming captivity, at the same time, he also prophesized of an event in the future when God’s judgment would fall on the Gentile nations. – A noise shall come even to the ends of the earth; for the LORD hath a controversy with the nations, he will plead with all flesh; he will give them that are wicked to the sword, saith the LORD.Thus saith the LORD of hosts, Behold, evil shall go forth from nation to nation, and a great whirlwind shall be raised up from the coasts of the earth. And the slain of the LORD shall be at that day from one end of the earth even unto the other end of the earth: they shall not be lamented, neither gathered, nor buried; they shall be dung upon the ground. – Jeremiah 25:31-33
We can study the book of Lamentations and also the historian Josephus’ description of the destruction of Jerusalem in his day and visualize that devastation superimposed over the entire world and we’ll begin to get a picture of the nightmare to come. In Josephus’ description of the Jerusalem siege he said that there was so much blood it put out the fires in the houses. In Revelation’s illustration of the hour, the blood was up to the horses’ bridles - Revelation 14:20.
God says in His word He is not willing that any shall perish - II Peter 3:9. He is also not willing that any of His people go through the hour or He would not have admonished us through Jesus to pray that we are worthy to escape. While salvation is a free gift imparted to us by faith in the death and resurrection of the Lord, our blessings have always been based on obedience. We reap what we sow - Galatians 6:7. We receive rewards based on how we build upon our foundation in Christ. -Now if any man build upon this foundation (Christ) gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble; every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is. If any man’s work abide which he has build upon, he shall receive a reward. If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss; but he himself shall be saved; yet so by fire – I Corinthians 3:15.
Some build with gold and silver, some with wood and stubble. Obedience and sacrifice are the gold and silver medal winners here in these verses. We all must live with the consequences of our choices, good and bad. But we also have a wonderful promise in the word of God – And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose – Romans 8:28.
God uses the refining fires of our trials to prepare us for future glory. Those who are His and must endure the hour and who do not fall away, cleaving to Him through the fiery furnace of their afflictions are greatly rewarded and greatly needed. They are not condemned but are called “blessed and holy” for these are the ones to be harvested as part of the first resurrection and will behold the face of their Beloved as He comes to gather His elect. They are the last testimony of God’s word in the final moments of this prophesied generation. And for the sake of this elect the time will be shortened – after all, compared to the years and days mentioned in Revelation, this time period is only just an “Hour”.
The Scriptures give us an unusual precedent for the removal of one worker and the remaining of another. Elijah was a prophet at the time when Ahab ruled Israel, (or should we say, when Jezebel ruled through Ahab?). After mightily demonstrating the power of God to the equivalent of an apostate church, Elijah was “raptured” or carried away by fire and wind, both symbols of the Holy Spirit.
And it came to pass, as they (Elijah and Elisha) still went on and talked, that behold, there appeared a chariot of fire, and horses of fire, and parted them both asunder, and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven …II Kings 2:11.
The prophet Elisha knew this was going to happen but was unprepared for the dramatic suddenness of the event. Previously he had asked for, and did receive after Elijah’s removal, a double portion of the prophet’s powerful anointing and Elisha was “left behind” to carry on the work and the testimony of the pure truth of God’s word to a corrupt church and government. Both of the prophets had specific jobs to do and when the time of the first prophetic dispensation was fulfilled and completed, the mantle was transferred and Elisha continued the work with tremendous anointing.
We have a possible precedent here for events in the future when the Philadelphian remnant elect are removed and the remaining believers are refined to continue God’s work. God is assembling His troops and engineering all of us into our respective future roles and there is a specific purpose and plan for every member of the body of Christ.
We continue to behold the portrait of the remaining harvest in chapter seven, those who have become the fruit of the first resurrection. It is a multitude which no man could number of all nations, and kindreds, and people and tongues. They are standing before the throne and the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands, worshipping their God with all the angels with the elders and the four beasts which represent all of creation.
And when John asks who these ones in white are, he is told that these are they which came out of Great tribulation (verse 14) and have washed their robes in the blood of the lamb. Laodicea has come through the fires of her purging, Jezebel’s children have learned to repent, and they and the rest of the Danites, have done the exploits witnessed by the prophet Daniel – But the people that know their God shall do exploits – Daniel 11:32.
We see them all again in the vision described in Chapter fifteen, the gathering of those who have come out of great tribulation and have gotten the victory over the beast, and over his image, and over his mark, and over the number of his name, stand on the sea of glass singing their praises to the One they have learned to obey and have not denied His name, therefore they have the assurance that He will not deny them – (11 Timothy 2:12, Matthew 10:32,33).
Therefore they are before the throne of God, and serve Him day and night in His temple: and He that sits on the throne shall dwell among them. 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 shall lead them unto fountains of living waters: and God shall wipe away tears from their eyes - and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away - Revelation 7:15—17, 21:4.
Yes, children, there is hope.
copyright 2010 by H.D. Shively