Revelation shows that the central issues in the last crisis of earth’s history will be worship and obedience to God, as revealed in keeping His commandments ( Rev. 14:12). The people of the world will fall into two groups: those who fear and worship God, and those who fear and worship the beast.
Review the first four commandments of the Decalogue ( Exod. 20:2– 11). Then go through Revelation 13. How does the beast’s demand for worship ( Rev. 13:7, 8), the setting up of an image to the beast to be worshiped ( Rev. 13:14, 15), blasphemy of God and His name ( Rev. 13:5, 6), and receiving of the mark of the beast ( Rev. 13:16, 17) point to Satan’s attacks on the first four commandments of the Decalogue in the final crisis?
The central concept of the first four commandments of the Decalogue is worship. Revelation indicates that these commandments will become the standard of loyalty to God in the final crisis. The final conflict between Christ and Satan plainly will revolve around worship and the first four commandments.
The key issue in the final crisis is emphasized in the second exhortation of the first angel’s message. The call to “ ‘worship Him who made heaven and earth, the sea and springs of water’ ” ( Rev. 14:7, NKJV) is almost an exact quotation of the fourth commandment of the Decalogue ( Exod. 20:11). This shows that the call to worship God the Creator is a call to Sabbath observance.
Rest and worship on the seventh day, Saturday, is a special sign of our relationship with God ( Exod. 31:13, Ezek. 20:12). The first angel’s message is a call to worship the Creator.
“While the observance of the false sabbath in compliance with the law of the state, contrary to the fourth commandment, will be an avowal of allegiance to a power that is in opposition to God, the keeping of the true Sabbath, in obedience to God’s law, is an evidence of loyalty to the Creator. While one class, by accepting the sign of submission to earthly powers, receive the mark of the beast, the other choosing the token of allegiance to divine authority, receive the seal of God.”—Ellen G. White, The Great Controversy, p. 605.
All of these happen in future but preparation for this stern test, which will have mortal consequences, must start from now. Knowing the truth but continuing to not do it is seen by God as sin.
Source reference: SDA 1Q19 Quarterly