Chapter 14 brings us to the end of the vision which was begun in chapter 13. It began with the vision of the Anti-Christ pictured as a beast with seven heads and ten horns (13:1-10). He causes the whole earth to worship the dragon (Satan – see ch. 12) who conducts a fierce war against Christians and the church from the earth (11: 1- 10) which survives only by God’s grace. This is indeed the history of the last 2000 years of the Christian church. She has never had prolonged times of peace. Sooner or later Satan makes sure that she is attacked and destroyed. There are so many evidences in our history of churches that once have flourished in this world, but which are now either museums or businesses or mosques, or they have been eliminated altogether. Who has done this? Well, Revelation 11: 4-10 and 12: 12b-13 tells the story . Satan has done this , and he has done this through the first beast , the anti-christ, who is given authority for 42 months (13:5) to hold the earth in his brutal ransom, causing the whole earth to marvel and worship the beast, and the dragon (13:4) and to speak haughty and blasphemous words against God (13:6)
The companion of the first beast (the antichrist) is the second beast arising out of the earth ,
with his two horns like a lamb's and with speech like the dragon. He is the false prophet, who deceives those who dwell on earth (13:14) with the help of great signs and wonders. He made them make an image of the anti- christ causing the people of this earth to worship it, killing those that refused to submit. And then he gave them a mark, and only the worshippers of the beast and his image, who had the mark could buy or sell.
The third vision was that of the Lamb on Mount Zion and with him the 144 000 (14: 1-5) who have been redeemed among mankind . Until this point it seemed as if the kingdom of the anti-christ was supreme and invincible, but now this vision tells us a different story.
Our God reigns !
The Almighty never intended the unholy trinity to exercise authority on this earth – only for 42 months. God has installed His own King on Mt. Zion (Psalm2) , the symbolic place from where He exercises His rule and everlasting authority. Psalm 2 tells us that God in the heavens sits and laughs at all the futile raging and plotting of the nations under their rulers and kings who are pawns in the hands of Satan , the anti-christ, the false prophet – the members of the unholy trinity.
God's people are perfectly safe. The one hundred forty-four thousand are all there, and not one is missing .
The fourth vision was that of angels (14:6- 11) delivering their messages of judgment upon Babylon , the city that symbolizes Satan’s kingdom.
In conclusion, there is a call for endurance to Christians (14:12-13) and a promise of rest for those who had endured the tribulation and persecution in this time because they refused to worship the beast.
THE HARVEST OF THE EARTH (14: 14-20)
We are now coming to the end of this vision which relates to the 2nd coming of our Lord and to the end of time as we know it. Just as the opening of the 6th seal in Rev 6 took us to the close of all human history, this passage takes us to the end - although the end is viewed here from a different angle.
We shall also see that what is spoken of here will be dealt with again in future chapters. The fall of Babylon (14:8) symbolically described in scripture as “the great prostitute” (17:1,5,15,16) is accompanied by the grim reaper and by the terrible wrath of God. This theme will be developed in future chapters with greater vividness and detail.
Two images strike us as we look at this vision of the great harvest – pictured here for us in the imagery of a harvest of wheat (14:15-16) and of grapes (14: 17-20) :
1. There is a harvester
2. There is a harvest
There should be no doubt as to who this is. The language employed makes it very clear that this is Jesus … " one like a son of man with a crown of gold on His head and a sharp sickle in His hand…" The term "son of man" is familiar to us.
(i) It is His favourite self – designation in the gospels.  Jesus testified before the High priest in Mt 26:64 as he stood before the Sanhedrin: "But I say to all of you: In future you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Mighty One and coming on the clouds of heaven." There is no doubt that this is the Lord Jesus Christ.
(ii) We have seen this same description in Rev. 1:13 - " In my vision at night I looked, and there before me was one like a son of man, coming with the clouds of heaven…"
(iii) The same picture is portrayed in Dan. 7:13 - "In my vision at night I looked, and there before me was one like a s on of man , coming with the clouds of heaven…"
This then is a picture of Jesus , the Son of Man , the Son of God in His exalted glory. He is seated on a white cloud . This imagery is familiar , and we see it also on the Mount of Transfiguration (Mt 17:5) as well as at His ascension (Acts 1:9). It is this same cloud that features in His second coming ( 1 Thess. 4:17) and in Rev 1:7 we read: “ Behold , He is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see Him…” . To come with the clouds in the Scriptures always denotes that this Son of man is coming for judgement.
In what capacity does He appear?
He is coming as God’s anointed King. Just when we thought that all was lost, and when the hour of darkness has reigned on the face of the earth He comes back with dramatic suddenness and unexpectedly (Matt 24: 44; 25:1-13; 1 Thess. 5:2) to claim His own , but the picture here is mainly that of a terrible judgement upon the earth . He has a sharp sickle in His hand , and He is coming for the purpose of harvest .
At the second coming He will not come as Saviour , but He is coming as the King -Judge.
But He is not alone in this work.
Whilst He supervises and oversees the harvest the actual work to be done is left to the angels, His servants. This agrees with other parts of the Scripture. E.g
Ø Matt 13:39 : Speaking about the harvest of the unrighteous : Parable of the Weeds à Jesus explains in this context: "The weeds are the sons of the evil one, and the enemy who sows then is the devil .The harvest is the end of the age, and the harvesters are angels."
Ø Matt 24:31 – Speaking about the harvest of the righteous : "And He will send His angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather His elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other."
Here then the angels proclaim that the time has come for the great harvest. It is time to reap. It is time to put the sickle to gather in the harvest . This announcement reminds us of Joel's prophecy of the judgement upon the nations: (Joel 3:13) " Put in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe. Go in, tread,for the winepress is full. The vats overflow, for their evil is great.
The hour for the harvest of the earth has come. The time of deliverance of God's people and the judgment for Satan's people has come. That is all fairly clear.
2. THE HARVEST :
As we take a closer look at this passage we see that 2 harvests are taking place. There is reference made to a wheat harvest (14:15,16) and also to a grape harvest (14:18-20)
The wheat harvest generally is a symbol which refers to the harvest of God's people.
Ø Lk 3:17 records the words of John the Baptist about Jesus: "His winnowing fork is in His hand to clear His threshing floor and to gather the wheat into His barn , but He will burn the chaff with fire." The purpose of the harvest is the gathering of the wheat, and not the chaff or the tares.
Ø In Lk 10:2, Mt 9:37 , Jn. 4:35-38 , ( The harvest is plentiful , but the labourers are few…) ; Christ describes His people as a field to be harvested. In Mk 4:26- 29 , He declares … “The kingdom of God is as if a man should scatter seed on the ground. He sleeps and rises night and day, and the seed sprouts and grows; he knows not how. The earth produces by itself, first the blade, then the ear, then the full grain in the ear. But when the grain is ripe, at once he puts in the sickle, because the harvest has come.”
The grape harvest represents the harvest of the ungodly, who are like grapes ready to be trampled upon in the winepress of God's judgement . Grapes in ancient times were put into a big bucket and they were trodden out with feet . This picture forms the background to the following OT pictures :
Ø Joel 3:13: Put in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe. Go in, tread, for the winepress is full. The vats overflow, for their evil is great.
Ø Isaiah 63: 1 – 6 : Who is this who comes from Edom, in crimsoned garments from Bozrah, he who is splendid in his apparel, marching in the greatness of his strength? “It is I, speaking in righteousness, mighty to save.” Why is your apparel red, and your garments like his who treads in the winepress?  “I have trodden the winepress alone, and from the peoples no one was with me; I trod them in my anger and trampled them in my wrath; their lifeblood spattered on my garments, and stained all my apparel.  For the day of vengeance was in my heart, and my year of redemption had come. 5] I looked, but there was no one to help; I was appalled, but there was no one to uphold; so my own arm brought me salvation, and my wrath upheld me.  I trampled down the peoples in my anger; I made them drunk in my wrath, and I poured out their lifeblood on the earth.”
The order to perform this reaping is again given from the temple in heaven. An angel comes with fire from the altar and proceeds from there with the judgment. Fire always is a symbol of judgment and of cleansing . This may be the same angel alluded to in Rev 8:5. There the angel takes a censer, fills it with fire from the altar, and hurls it upon the earth.
Notice that this winepress of God's wrath is located outside of the city. It was outside the city gate that Jesus was unjustly condemned, treated as unclean and abominable, and it was here that He was put to death - the Innocent for the guilty. It was there that He was publically trodden upon in the winepress of God's wrath , bearing our sins and absorbing our punishment so that we might be clothed with his pure and holy righteousness.
And now when the final hour of judgement comes, it will be also be outside of the symbolic city of God , that the rejectors of His grace ( all through their own choice ) will have to suffer God's righteous wrath.
The picture which follows is graphic and terrible. They were trampled in the winepress, …and blood flowed out of the press in great quantities. To illustrate - 1600 stadia represents about 300 kilometres as high as a horses bridle - 1.5 meters !
Do you remember that desperate question back in Rev. 6:17 : "In the face of God's wrath , who can stand?"
Thankfully the answer remains the same while the day of Grace continues : "Those who have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the lamb " (7:14)
You see , you can't get around the issue of 'blood'. Either it is your or His blood that will be required in the day of judgment.
What will it be for you?
 See also Mk 14:62 ;Lk 22:69;Acts 2:33 ; see also Rev 1:7