Remember that the book of Revelation has sections:
Chapter 1- Introduction to the Book
Chapters 2 – 3 – Address to the seven churches
Chapters 4 – 11 – The Future of the World – First Presentation
Chapters 12 – 16 – The Future of the World – Second Presentation
Chapters 17 – 22 – The Future of the World – Third Presentation
The three presentations made in chapters 4 – 22 are the same presentation, only each time it is made, more information is given about mankind’s future. If you look closely, you will see the similarities between them.
In the first presentation for example, the nations turn against God and God destroys them with “lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder, an earthquake and a great hailstorm” (11:18-19). In the second presentation, the kings of the earth gather against God at a place called Armageddon, but God destroys them with “lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder, and a severe earthquake” (16:16,18). In the third presentation, Satan and his henchman, the Sea Beast, along with the kings of the earth and their armies gather together to make war against Jesus, the “Faithful and True.” But the beast is captured, and with him the false prophet (land beast) and they are thrown alive into the fiery lake of burning sulfur.
A wonderful day is coming; a day when the church (called the bride) will be united with Jesus. But that day is only for those who have “made themselves ready.” They are made “ready” by washing in the blood of the lamb (a figure of Jesus’ sacrifice) and by clothing their lives in the works of the righteous.
It’s a complicated image, but at heart it boils down to this: nothing of this world will last but people, and they last only if they have joined with Jesus and lived as he did, and as he commanded.