Revelation  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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Revelation 8:1–13 ESV
When the Lamb opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour. Then I saw the seven angels who stand before God, and seven trumpets were given to them. And another angel came and stood at the altar with a golden censer, and he was given much incense to offer with the prayers of all the saints on the golden altar before the throne, and the smoke of the incense, with the prayers of the saints, rose before God from the hand of the angel. Then the angel took the censer and filled it with fire from the altar and threw it on the earth, and there were peals of thunder, rumblings, flashes of lightning, and an earthquake. Now the seven angels who had the seven trumpets prepared to blow them. The first angel blew his trumpet, and there followed hail and fire, mixed with blood, and these were thrown upon the earth. And a third of the earth was burned up, and a third of the trees were burned up, and all green grass was burned up. The second angel blew his trumpet, and something like a great mountain, burning with fire, was thrown into the sea, and a third of the sea became blood. A third of the living creatures in the sea died, and a third of the ships were destroyed. The third angel blew his trumpet, and a great star fell from heaven, blazing like a torch, and it fell on a third of the rivers and on the springs of water. The name of the star is Wormwood. A third of the waters became wormwood, and many people died from the water, because it had been made bitter. The fourth angel blew his trumpet, and a third of the sun was struck, and a third of the moon, and a third of the stars, so that a third of their light might be darkened, and a third of the day might be kept from shining, and likewise a third of the night. Then I looked, and I heard an eagle crying with a loud voice as it flew directly overhead, “Woe, woe, woe to those who dwell on the earth, at the blasts of the other trumpets that the three angels are about to blow!”
Revelation 9:1–21 ESV
And the fifth angel blew his trumpet, and I saw a star fallen from heaven to earth, and he was given the key to the shaft of the bottomless pit. He opened the shaft of the bottomless pit, and from the shaft rose smoke like the smoke of a great furnace, and the sun and the air were darkened with the smoke from the shaft. Then from the smoke came locusts on the earth, and they were given power like the power of scorpions of the earth. They were told not to harm the grass of the earth or any green plant or any tree, but only those people who do not have the seal of God on their foreheads. They were allowed to torment them for five months, but not to kill them, and their torment was like the torment of a scorpion when it stings someone. And in those days people will seek death and will not find it. They will long to die, but death will flee from them. In appearance the locusts were like horses prepared for battle: on their heads were what looked like crowns of gold; their faces were like human faces, their hair like women’s hair, and their teeth like lions’ teeth; they had breastplates like breastplates of iron, and the noise of their wings was like the noise of many chariots with horses rushing into battle. They have tails and stings like scorpions, and their power to hurt people for five months is in their tails. They have as king over them the angel of the bottomless pit. His name in Hebrew is Abaddon, and in Greek he is called Apollyon. The first woe has passed; behold, two woes are still to come. Then the sixth angel blew his trumpet, and I heard a voice from the four horns of the golden altar before God, saying to the sixth angel who had the trumpet, “Release the four angels who are bound at the great river Euphrates.” So the four angels, who had been prepared for the hour, the day, the month, and the year, were released to kill a third of mankind. The number of mounted troops was twice ten thousand times ten thousand; I heard their number. And this is how I saw the horses in my vision and those who rode them: they wore breastplates the color of fire and of sapphire and of sulfur, and the heads of the horses were like lions’ heads, and fire and smoke and sulfur came out of their mouths. By these three plagues a third of mankind was killed, by the fire and smoke and sulfur coming out of their mouths. For the power of the horses is in their mouths and in their tails, for their tails are like serpents with heads, and by means of them they wound. The rest of mankind, who were not killed by these plagues, did not repent of the works of their hands nor give up worshiping demons and idols of gold and silver and bronze and stone and wood, which cannot see or hear or walk, nor did they repent of their murders or their sorceries or their sexual immorality or their thefts.
We are in that section of Revelation where the judgements of God are being poured out on mankind. There is precision and order to this judgement. Those God uses to deliver it are given specific boundaries of both time and space.
The silence beginning this time of judgement is remarkable. Heaven is never silent. The praises of created beings are always heard in the presence of God. But this was truly the quiet before the storm.
During the silence the trumpets were given. They are significant in Jewish life to call people together, announce war and announce special times. Remember the trumpets were blown at the giving of the law at Mt Sinai; blown when the king was anointed and at the conquest of Gideon and at Jericho.
These trumpets announce judgement. Plain and simple. We have seen the seals broken and the scroll unrolled. The opening of the seals reveal what is to come. The trumpets announce the coming. The bowls soon coming pour out what is to come.
Some offer the opinion the seals are things happening in the natural realm. The trumpets relate to happenings in the heavenly realm. The bowls then specific to Satan and his forces. I don't know. From what I read no one does. Oh they may present as though they do, but it is not given in scripture so any opinion is just that: Opinion.
The 7th seal brings out the trumpets
30 minutes of silence
Prayers kept heaven
Fire from the altar thrown to the earth/ 1st trumpet hail, fire, blood
Something like a great mountain; meteor?
Wormwood falls from heaven
Dimming of the sun/moon
3 ‘woes’ announcing the last 3 trumpets
Another falling star/being
Bottomless pit/abyss
Four angels
Even seeing all unfold, mankind does not repent. Even though the judgement and wrath of God is poured out on earth, the seared consciences of humanity refuses to bow to the Creator. The Creator who now judges His creation.
Threat of God’s judgement is not an ultimate deterrent. Although effective in the physical realm for a society, there is a spiritual truth working against it: depravity creates callousness, insensitivity, hard-heartedness. And the depravity of man knows no bounds.
You may have a hard time accepting this truth. Let’s consider when judgement was announced in the OT: Noah. They mocked him. It seemed to have been effective for Jonah. They repented. Israel itself. Jeremiah faithfully proclaimed a message of repentance to avoid judgement.
But then there was Jericho. Rehab. Her family was saved because she confessed: We have seen what your God has done for you! When the world sees the mighty power of God in the Church, they turn to Him!! Is the power of God seen in you as you live by faith? As you trust Him in this mess of a society we are in? You can start today! If you don't know, just tell Him I DONT KNOW HOW! BUT I WANT TO!!
So our message cannot be solely of judgement. It must be of love and justice. It must be of mercy and vengeance. While we have an audience, as long as we are in this world, we must tell. Pray? Yes! Send? Yes! But open our mouths and TELL.
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