IV. ``The Things Which Are About to Take Place''
A. The First Section, Giving a General View of the Things to Come, from Christ's Ascension to Eternity Future
1. The Scene around the Throne in the Heavens --
Only the Lion-Lamb (the Victorious and Redeeming Christ)
Being Worthy to Open the Mystery of God's Economy
1 After these things I saw, and behold, a adoor 1bopened in heaven, and the first 2cvoice which I heard was like a trumpet speaking with me, saying, dCome up here, and I will show you the things that must take place after these ethings.
2 Immediately I was in 1aspirit; and behold, there was a 2bthrone set in heaven, and upon the throne there was cOne sitting;
3 And He who was sitting was like a 1ajasper stone and a 2bsardius in appearance, and there was a 3crainbow around the throne like an 4demerald in appearance.
4 And aaround the throne there were 1btwenty-four thrones, and upon the thrones 1ctwenty-four 2elders sitting, clothed in 3dwhite garments, and upon their heads golden ecrowns.
5 And out of the throne come forth alightnings and voices and thunders. And there were 1bseven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are the 2cseven Spirits of God;
6 And before the throne there was as it were a 1aglassy sea like bcrystal; and in the midst of the throne and around the throne, there were 2cfour living creatures 3dfull of eyes in front and behind.
7 And the first living creature was 1like a alion, and the second living creature like a acalf, and the third living creature had a face like that of a aman, and the fourth living creature was like a flying aeagle.
8 And the four living creatures, each one of them having asix wings apiece, are full of eyes around and within; and they have no rest day and night, saying, 1bHoly, holy, holy, cLord God the Almighty, 2dwho was and who is and who is coming.
9 And when the four living creatures give 1aglory and honor and thanks to Him who sits upon the throne, to Him who blives forever and ever,
10 The twenty-four elders will afall before Him who sits upon the throne and worship Him who lives forever and ever; and they will 1cast their crowns before the throne, saying,
11 You are aworthy, our Lord and God, to receive the 1bglory and the honor and the power, for You have ccreated all things, and because of Your 2dwill they were, and were created.
1 And I saw on the right hand of Him who sits upon the throne a 1ascroll written within and on the back, sealed up with 2seven seals.
2 And I saw a strong angel proclaiming with a loud voice, Who is aworthy to open the scroll and to break its seals?
3 And no one ain heaven nor on the earth nor under the earth was able to open the scroll or look into it.
4 And I wept much because 1no one was found worthy to open the scroll or look into it.
5 And one of the elders said to me, Do not weep; behold, the 1aLion of the tribe of bJudah, the 2cRoot of David, has 3dovercome so that He may open the scroll and its seven seals.
6 And I saw in the midst of the throne and of the four living creatures and in the midst of the elders a 1aLamb 2standing as 3having just been bslain, having 4seven chorns and 5dseven eeyes, 6which are the fseven Spirits of God sent forth into gall the earth.
7 And He came and took the scroll out of the right hand of Him who sits upon the throne.
8 And when He took the scroll, the afour living creatures and the btwenty-four elders fell before the Lamb, each having a charp and dgolden 1bowls full of 2eincense, which bowls are the fprayers of the saints.
9 And they sing a 1anew song, saying: You are 2bworthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, for You were cslain and have dpurchased for God 3by Your eblood men out of fevery tribe and tongue and people and nation,
10 And have made 1them a 2akingdom and priests to our God; and they will breign 3on the earth.
11 And I saw, and I heard the voice of 1many angels around the throne and of the living creatures and of the elders, and their number was aten thousands of ten thousands and thousands of thousands,
12 Saying with a loud voice, aWorthy is the bLamb who has been cslain to receive the dpower and eriches and wisdom and strength and honor and fglory and gblessing.
13 And 1every creature which is ain heaven and on the earth and under the earth and on the sea and all things in them, I heard saying, To Him who sits upon the throne and to the bLamb be the blessing and the honor and the glory and the might forever and ever.
14 And the four living creatures said, aAmen. And the elders fell down and worshipped.
2. The Seven Seals --
The Mystery of God's Economy
a. The First Seal:
A White Horse and Its Rider --
The Preaching of the Gospel
1 And I saw when the aLamb 1opened one of the bseven seals, and I heard one of the cfour 2living creatures saying like the dsound of thunder, eCome.
2 And I saw, and behold, a 1awhite horse, and 2he who sits on it had a 3bow; and a 4bcrown was given to him, and he cwent forth 5dconquering and to conquer.
b. The Second Seal:
A Red Horse and Its Rider --
The Spread of War
3 And when He opened the second seal, I heard the second living creature saying, Come.
4 And 1I saw, and behold, another horse, a 2ared one, went forth; and to him who sits on it, to him authority was given to 3btake peace from the earth, and that men should slay one another; and to him a great csword was given.
c. The Third Seal:
A Black Horse and Its Rider --
The Increase of Famine
5 And when He opened the third seal, I heard the third living creature saying, Come. And I saw, and behold, a 1ablack horse; and he who sits on it had a 2bbalance in his hand.
6 And I heard as it were a voice in the midst of the four living creatures saying: A 1choenix of wheat for a 2denarius and three choenixes of barley for a 2denarius; and do not harm the 3aoil and the wine.
d. The Fourth Seal:
A Pale Horse and Its Rider --
7 And when He opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature saying, Come.
8 And I saw, and behold, a 1pale horse, and he who sits upon it, his name is aDeath; and 2bHades followed with him. And authority was given to them over the fourth part of the earth to ckill with the sword and with famine and with 3death and by the 4beasts of the earth.
e. The Fifth Seal:
The Cry of the Souls underneath the Altar --
The Prayer of the Martyred Saints
from Paradise for Vengeance
9 And when He opened the 1fifth seal, I saw 2underneath the aaltar the bsouls of those who had been cslain because of the dword of God and because of the etestimony which they had.
10 And they 1cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Master, aholy and true, will You not bjudge and cavenge our blood on those who ddwell on the earth?
11 And to each of them was given a 1awhite robe; and it was said to them that they should brest yet a little while, until also the number of their fellow slaves and their brothers who were cabout to be 2killed, even as they were, is completed.
f. The Sixth Seal:
The Shaking of the Earth and Heaven,
the Beginning of the Great Tribulation --
A Warning to Earth's Dwellers
12 And I saw when He opened the 1sixth seal, and there was a great 2aearthquake, and the bsun became black like csackcloth made of hair, and the whole moon became like blood;
13 And the astars of heaven fell to the earth as a bfig tree casts its unripe figs when shaken by a great wind.
14 And aheaven was removed like a scroll being rolled up, and every bmountain and island were moved out of their places.
15 And the akings of the earth and the great men and the 1generals and the rich and the strong and every slave and free man bhid themselves in the caves and in the rocks of the mountains;
16 And they 1asay to the mountains and to the rocks, Fall on us and hide us from the bface of Him who sits upon the throne and from the cwrath of the dLamb;
17 For the agreat day of Their wrath has come, and bwho is able to stand?
g. The Visions Inserted
between the Sixth and Seventh Seals
(1) 144,000 of the Twelve Tribes Sealed --
The Chosen Israelites Preserved on Earth
1 1After this I saw four angels standing at the afour corners of the earth, holding the bfour 2winds of the earth, so that 3no wind would blow on the earth nor on the sea nor on any tree.
2 And I saw 1another Angel ascending from the arising of the sun, having the seal of the bliving God; and He cried with a loud voice to the four angels to whom authority was given to harm the earth and the sea,
3 Saying, Do not harm the earth or the sea or the trees until we aseal the slaves of our God upon btheir foreheads.
4 And I heard the number of 1those who were sealed, a ahundred and forty-four thousand, sealed out of every tribe of the sons of Israel:
5 Out of the tribe of 1Judah, twelve thousand sealed; out of the tribe of Reuben, twelve thousand; out of the tribe of Gad, twelve thousand;
6 Out of the tribe of Asher, twelve thousand; out of the tribe of Naphtali, twelve thousand; out of the tribe of 1aManasseh, twelve thousand;
7 Out of the tribe of Simeon, twelve thousand; out of the tribe of Levi, twelve thousand; out of the tribe of Issachar, twelve thousand;
8 Out of the tribe of Zebulun, twelve thousand; out of the tribe of Joseph, twelve thousand; out of the tribe of Benjamin, twelve thousand sealed.
(2) A Great Multitude Serving God
in the Heavenly Temple --
The Redeemed Saints Raptured to Heaven
to Enjoy God's Care
and the Lamb's Shepherding
9 After these things I saw, and behold, there was a 1great multitude which no one could number, out of aevery nation and all tribes and peoples and tongues, 2standing before the throne and before the bLamb, clothed in 3cwhite robes and 4dpalm branches in their hands.
10 And they cry with a loud voice, saying, 1aSalvation to our God who sits upon the throne and to the bLamb.
11 And all the angels stood around the throne and the aelders and the bfour living creatures; and they fell on their faces before the throne and worshipped God,
12 Saying, 1aAmen. The bblessing and the cglory and the wisdom and the dthanks and the honor and the power and the strength be to our God forever and ever. Amen.
13 And one of the elders answered, saying to me, These who are clothed in the white robes, who are they, and where did they come from?
14 And I said to him, My lord, you know. And he said to me, These are those who come out of the 1great atribulation, and they have bwashed their robes and made them cwhite in the dblood of the eLamb.
15 Because of this 1they are before the throne of God and 2aserve Him day and night in His btemple; and He who sits upon the throne 3will ctabernacle over them.
16 They will not ahunger any more, neither will they bthirst any more, neither will the csun 1beat upon them, nor any heat;
17 For the aLamb who is in the midst of the throne will 1bshepherd them and cguide them to dsprings of 2ewaters of life; and God will fwipe away every 2tear from their eyes.
h. The Seventh Seal:
Seven Trumpets Brought In --
The Answer to the Martyred Saints' Prayer
in the Fifth Seal
1 And when He opened the seventh seal, there was asilence in 1heaven for about half an hour.
2 And I saw the 1aseven angels who stand before God, and 1bseven trumpets were given to them.
i. The Scene in Heaven
after the Opening of the Seventh Seal --
Christ as the High Priest Offering the Prayers
of the Saints to God
3 And 1aanother Angel came and stood at the 2baltar, having a 3golden ccenser, and much 4dincense was given to Him to 5offer with the eprayers of all the 6saints upon the 7fgolden altar which was before the throne.
4 And the 1asmoke of the 2incense went up with the bprayers of the saints out of the hand of the Angel before God.
5 And the Angel took the censer and 1filled it with the afire of the altar and 2bcast it to the earth; and there were cthunders and voices and lightnings and an dearthquake.
3. The Seven Trumpets --
The Execution of God's Economy
6 And the aseven angels who had the seven trumpets prepared themselves 1to trumpet.
a. The First Trumpet:
Judgment on the Earth
7 And the first trumpeted, and there was ahail and bfire mingled with blood, and it was cast to the earth; and the 1cthird part of the dearth was burned up, and the third part of the trees were burned up, and all green grass was burned up.
b. The Second Trumpet:
Judgment on the Sea
8 And the second angel trumpeted, and as it were a great amountain burning with fire was cast into the sea; and the third part of the 1sea became bblood,
9 And the third part of the creatures which were in the sea and had 1life died, and the third part of the ships were destroyed.
c. The Third Trumpet:
Judgment on the Rivers
10 And the third angel trumpeted, and a great astar fell out of heaven, burning like a torch, and it fell upon the third part of the rivers and upon the bsprings of waters.
11 And the name of the star is called 1Wormwood; and the 2third part of the waters became awormwood, and many of the men died from the waters because they were made bitter.
d. The Fourth Trumpet:
Judgment on the Sun, Moon, and Stars
12 And the 1fourth angel trumpeted, and the 2third part of the asun and the third part of the moon and the third part of the stars were smitten, so that the third part of them would be bdarkened and the day would not appear for the third part of it, and the night likewise.
e. The Fifth Trumpet -- The First Woe:
Judgment on Men -- Satan and Antichrist
Collaborating to Torment Men
13 And I saw, and I heard an aeagle flying in bmid-heaven, saying with a loud voice, 1cWoe, woe, woe, to those who ddwell on the earth because of the remaining trumpet sounds of the ethree angels who are about to trumpet!
1 And the fifth angel trumpeted, and I saw a 1astar out of heaven bfallen to the earth, and to him was given the ckey of the pit of the 2dabyss.
2 And he opened the pit of the abyss, and asmoke went up out of the pit like the smoke of a great furnace; and the bsun and the air were darkened by the smoke of the pit.
3 And out of the smoke came forth 1alocusts to the earth, and to them 2power was given, as the bscorpions of the earth have 2power.
4 And it was said to them that they should not harm the grass of the earth or any green thing or any tree, but 1men who do not have the aseal of God on their foreheads.
5 And it was given them that they should not kill them, but that they should be tormented afive months; and their torment was like the torment of a scorpion when it strikes a man.
6 And in those days men will aseek death and shall by no means find it; and they will long to die, and death flees from them.
7 And 1the 2alocusts were like horses prepared for bwar, and on their heads there were as it were crowns like gold, and their faces were like faces of men.
8 And they had hair like the hair of women, and their ateeth were like the teeth of lions.
9 And they had breastplates like breastplates of iron; and the asound of their wings was like the sound of chariots of many horses rushing into war.
10 And they have atails like scorpions, and stings; and in their tails is their power to harm men for bfive months.
11 They have a aking over them, the 1angel of the babyss; his name in Hebrew is 2Abaddon; and in Greek he has the name 3Apollyon.
f. The Sixth Trumpet -- The Second Woe:
Further Judgment on Men --
Two Hundred Million Horsemen
Killing the Third Part of Men
12 The 1afirst woe has passed; behold, 2btwo woes are yet coming after these things.
13 And the sixth angel trumpeted, and I heard a voice out of the four horns of the 1agolden altar which is before God
14 Saying to the sixth angel who had the trumpet, Release the four angels who are bound at the great river aEuphrates.
15 And the four angels were released, who had been prepared 1for the hour and day and month and year that they might kill the athird part of men.
16 And the number of the armies of 1horsemen was two hundred million; I heard their number.
17 And thus I saw the horses in the vision and those sitting on them, having breastplates of afire and of hyacinth and of bbrimstone; and the heads of the horses were like the heads of lions, and out of their mouths proceed fire and csmoke and brimstone.
18 By these three aplagues the third part of the men were killed, by the fire and the smoke and the brimstone proceeding out of their mouths.
19 For the power of the horses is in their mouth and in their atails; for their tails are like 1bserpents and have heads, and with them they harm men.
20 And the rest of the men, who were not killed by these plagues, still did anot 1repent of the bworks of their hands, so as not to cworship the demons and the didols of gold and silver and brass and stone and wood, which can 2neither see nor hear nor walk;
21 And they did anot repent of their murders or of their bsorceries or of their cfornication or of their thefts.
g. The Visions Inserted
between the Sixth
and Seventh Trumpets
(1) Christ Coming to Possess the Earth
1 1And I saw 2aanother strong Angel bcoming down out of heaven, clothed with a ccloud; and the 3drainbow was upon His head, and His eface was like the 4sun, and His ffeet like 5pillars of 6fire;
2 And He had in His hand a 1little opened ascroll. And He placed His 2right foot on the sea and the left on the land;
3 And He cried out with a loud voice just as a 1alion broars. And when He cried out, the 2seven cthunders uttered their own voices.
4 And when the seven thunders spoke, I was about to write, and I heard a avoice out of heaven saying, bSeal the things which the seven thunders spoke, and do not write them.
5 And the Angel whom I saw astanding on the sea and on the land blifted up His right hand to heaven
6 And 1swore by Him who alives forever and ever, who bcreated heaven and the 2things in it, and the earth and the 3things in it, and the sea and the 4things in it, that there shall be 5cdelay no longer,
7 But in the 1days of the voice of the aseventh angel when he is about to trumpet, then the 2mystery of God 3is 4finished, as He has bannounced the 5good news to His own slaves the prophets.
(2) John Charged to Prophesy Again
8 And the avoice which I heard out of heaven, I heard again speaking with me and saying, Go, take the opened bscroll in the hand of the Angel who is cstanding on the sea and on the land.