Revealing Revelation – A Break in the Action

07Feb11

Just like the reader saw in our discussion of the seven seals, there is here an interlude between the sixth and seventh trumpets. This interlude includes an appearance of a might angel who introduces a “little book” with a prophecy attached to it. The interlude continues into Chapter 11 and the story of the Two Witnesses before this final trumpet is blown at the end of Chapter 11.

We will look at these different images and the symbols contained, but, as has been mentioned several times, the primary focus of this blog is to deal with the prophetic passages and relates them to their historical fulfillment. So, many details unrelated to the actual prophesies may be missed or not as detailed as other items for the sake of brevity.

Rev. 10:1-4 Then I saw another mighty angel coming down from heaven, wrapped in a cloud, with a rainbow over his head, and his face was like the sun, and his legs like pillars of fire. [2] He had a little scroll open in his hand. And he set his right foot on the sea, and his left foot on the land, [3] and called out with a loud voice, like a lion roaring. When he called out, the seven thunders sounded. [4] And when the seven thunders had sounded, I was about to write, but I heard a voice from heaven saying, “Seal up what the seven thunders have said, and do not write it down.”

I have placed in bold the items above worth noting. there is a debate as to whether the angel in question is Jesus Christ. I think the evidence is strong enough to assume it to be so. Note the appearing in a cloud. This image is quite common, as has been discussed previously, for representing the presence of God. Also, the rainbow in reminiscent of the rainbow around the throne in the 4th Chapter. Also we earlier noted that Jesus was described as having feet like pillars of fire(Rev 1:5). Also He speaks with a voice like a lion.

The physical description appears to be sufficient to assume that this is Jesus in this image. But we also note that He has a scroll in His hand. This is quite possibly the same scroll from Chapter 5, but here it is seen as being opened. If this is the same scroll it would be safe to assume this is Jesus. The discussion of the book itself will follow.

One very important image to consider is the placement of this feet of this angel. The placement also shed light on the idea that the angel is question is Jesus. You will note that He places one foot on the land and one on the sea. The Biblical image of Israel being related to the “land” and the Gentile nations the “sea” has been discussed previously. This positioning would note that Jesus is Lord over both Israel and the gentiles. He is the Lord of both and now fulfills the promise to Abraham and discussed in Galatians that the promised seed would bless ALL nations.

Finally, one more interesting thing to note in this passage is the instruction given to John relating to what the seven thunders spoke. He is told to seal up those words and do not write them down. This is in stark contrast to later when John is told not to seal of the prophecy for the time is “near.” This may simply mean that the message from the seven thunders was regarding a future event, quite possible the second advent of Christ.

Rev 10:5 And the angel whom I saw standing on the sea and on the land raised his right hand to heaven 6and swore by him who lives forever and ever, who created heaven and what is in it, the earth and what is in it, and the sea and what is in it, that there would be no more delay, 7but that in the days of the trumpet call to be sounded by the seventh angel, the mystery of God would be fulfilled, just as he announced to his servants the prophets.

Here we note again the proclamation of no delay in these judgment actions. His people would be avenged and the Lord Jesus Christ will be vindicated! These would be fulfilled in the days of the seventh trumpet that was just about to sound. And with that sounding the mystery of God would be fulfilled in an obvious way. This mystery, though, was foretold by His servants the prophets.

The seventh trumpet, as we will see, declares the judgment against apostate Israel that is ultimately seen in the destruction of the symbol of the Old Covenant, the Temple. This destructive judgment would plainly and clearly declare that the Old Covenant that was fading (Heb 8:13) had become obsolete and that Jesus’ finished work on the cross fulfilled the Law and He was truly Lord over all and had received His everlasting Kingdom (Dan 7).

The end result of these actions fulfills what was foretold by the prophets and promised to Abraham; that the Gentiles would be blessed and saved and that He would be Lord of both the Jew and Gentile. The Gospel is for all nations and the mystery of the addition of the gentile nations into the Covenant with the Lord is fulfilled in a physical and literal way with the symbol of the Old Covenant being destroyed, with not one stone left upon another!

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One Response to “Revealing Revelation – A Break in the Action”

  1. Excellent summary at the end of this post regarding the fading out of the Old Covenant in favor of the New Covenant, as this transition culminated in the temple’s destruction in 70 AD. Yes, the mystery of God has been fulfilled (Rev. 10:7; Eph. 3:6).

    In this post I noted that you said, “The Biblical image of Israel being related to the ‘land’ and the Gentile nations the ‘sea’ has been discussed previously.” Do you happen to remember which post it was exactly where this discussion took place? I’ve tried to search for it among your posts, but haven’t been able to find it. I’m very interested in seeing this discussion, though. Thanks!


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