The Seven Seals (Part 4)
At the conclusion of chapter 5 (part 3), the topic of Redemption was covered, the song that the cherubim and the elders sang was focused on the work of the cross, a work which allowed people to be restored into relationship with God. So, chapter 5 covered how the Lamb was worthy because He had redeemed mankind, now with the opening of the seals in chapter 6, the process of redeeming the dominion over creation from Satan, on behalf of mankind, begins.
An analysis of Scripture will reveal that God works in circles, it is a symbol of wholeness and completion:
- God required the nation of Israel to have cyclic remembrances of their relationship with him: weekly Sabbaths, yearly feasts, the sabbath year (Shmita) and the fifty-year jubilee (Ezekiel’s wheels within wheels).
- The corrupted creation in the Garden of Eden, will result in a new creation on a New Earth.
- The rebellion of the Tower of Babel with a one-world-government, a one-world-economy, and a one-world-religion, returns in the last days under the rule of the Antichrist. This time there will be an accountability and mankind will be judged for his rebellion.
The curse God spoke over the serpent in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 3:15) is also about to have its cyclic completion, with the start of chapter 6. The revelation by John of the details within the seven sealed scroll should not just be understood as prophecy, John is also recording theology – the seed of the woman (Jesus) at enmity with the seed of the serpent (the Antichrist). Throughout the history of the world, the spirit of the Antichrist has been at work contaminating and corrupting the Word of God, with the ultimate goal of attaining a rebellion against God, that will see Satan replace God in the hearts of mankind. With the breaking of the seals, the battle between the seed of the woman and the seed of the serpent comes to its conclusion. In chapter 6 to 20 the spiritual conflict between the Hosts of Heaven and the Forces of Darkness come to a climax. While the serpent struck the heel of the seed of the woman at the cross, the seed of the woman is now about to crush the head of the seed of the serpent.
The Four Horsemen (6:1-8)
The first four seals reveal four men riding on horses, and are often referred to as the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. These four horsemen are universal and carry great judgements to be directed at the population of whole earth.
Revelation 6 – An Overview
The seven seals are an overview of the Tribulation period. Jesus, as the Kinsman-redeemer, has ownership of the scroll with seven seals, the legal document that lays out the requirements for Jesus to take back dominion over the kingdoms of the world from Satan. The scroll starts with the rise of the Antichrist after the signing of the seven-year treaty: “He (the Antichrist) will confirm a covenant with many for one ‘seven’ (Dan.9:27a)”. There has to be peace for three and a half years, a time when the Third Temple is built and the Antichrist establishes himself in Jerusalem. Then, “In the middle of the seven (after three and a half years [Dan. 9:27b]), the Antichrist “sets up an abomination that causes desolation (Dan.9:27b)”. It will be during the Great Tribulation that the plagues of the last three horsemen will unfold. War will break out in rebellion to the Antichrists rule, and the wars will result in the economic hardship, plagues and death.
The White Horse (6:1-2)
“1 Now I watched when the Lamb opened one of the seven seals, and I heard one of the four living creatures say with a voice like thunder, ‘Come!’ 2 And I looked, and behold, a white horse! And its rider had a bow, and a crown was given to him, and he came out conquering, and to conquer”.
The first of the four riders is the rider on the white horse, which is the release of the Antichrist onto the world. The voice calling “come,” should be interpreted in the same way as a coach calling a reserve player off the bench, before sending him onto the field to play. The term antichrist literally means in place of Christ, so the Antichrist is more than, as some would suggest, “anti” or against Christ; the Antichrist also seeks to displace Jesus. The Antichrist is Satan’s counterfeit messiah, whom Satan will empower in an attempt to bring all mankind into rebellion against God. So, the Antichrist is the false messiah, he is sent forth with the intention to deceive mankind, this is clearly represented by the description of the Antichrist being a counterfeit of Jesus, who is described by John as returning at the end of the Tribulation, as King of Kings and Lord of Lord’s, while riding a white horse (Revelation 19:11).
There are clear distinctions between the two white horse riders:
- The Antichrist is depicted with a bow which has no arrows, indicating that the Antichrist will be militarily strong, but in the beginning he does his conquering by diplomacy. While Jesus has the sword of the Word of God, indicating impending judgement (Rev. 19:15).
- The Antichrist has “a crown… given to him,” the Greek word used for crown is stephanos, a victor’s crown – he is given authority. It is not however, the Kingly diadem of Jesus which is a symbol of sovereignty.
- The descriptions of the two riders is very different, while the description of the Antichrist only includes two items, the bow and the crown, the description of Jesus is detailed, and the symbolism is that of a returning King, coming to establish His rule, with authority and judgement.
- The order of the four horsemen of Revelation 6 indicates that the first rider on the white horse, because he claims world authority, becomes the cause of the tribulations brought by the three horsemen to follow. While in Revelation 19, Jesus returns at Armageddon and quickly ends the rebellion of mankind, there will be no wars, plural, and the establishment of His Kingdom will ensure a time of blessing, not the curse of plagues.
The first seal therefore is not Jesus, but his counterfeit, a false messiah given authority by God to deceive the world (2 Thess. 2:11).
The Antichrist is a judgement:
It is very important for the student of End Times to understand that the arrival of the Antichrist is a judgement from God. Paul writes in 2 Thessalonians 2:3 that the Antichrist is able to come to power because of apostacy within the world. The Word of God is going to be corrupted within the “Church” to such an extent that the Antichrist is going to be accepted as the anointed saviour:
“Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away (apostasy) first, and that man of sin (The Antichrist) be revealed, the son of perdition. who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness” (2 Thess. 2:3).
Paul, continues to inform the church in Thessalonica that because of the rebelliousness of mankind God will send “them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie, and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness” (2 Thess. 2:11b-12). Mankind in the world today, has reached a stage in his sinful rebellion where he does not withhold anything from himself that he desires. God is a Holy God, and therefore He must hold ungodliness and unrighteousness accountable. By handing mankind over to a reprobate mind, God is giving man what he wants, but the consequences for those that chose rebellion against His Word will not only be an eternity in hell, but also the wrath of God’s judgement during the Tribulation.
The studies Matthew 24 part 1 & 2, and 2 Thessalonians, cover in detail the rise of apostacy in the “Church” which will allow the Antichrist to establish himself on a seat of authority as the leader of the one-world religion.
The Antichrist in Scripture
There are those who deny that there will be a sinister individual called the Antichrist, who will ascend to be the world governing power in the future. The letters of John are used by these disclaimers as evidence of their belief, “Dear children, this is the last hour; and as you have heard that the antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have come” (1 John 2:18) and “Many deceivers, who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh, have gone out into the world. Any such person is a deceiver and the antichrist” (2 John 7). They believe there will rather be “many false Christs” and that there was evidence of their existence in the first century at the time of John’s writing of his two letters. The term “antichrist”, they reason, is a general term used to suggest a spirit of unbelief that is directed against the teachings of Jesus. According to them, there is no identification in Scripture of a single individual who would be considered “the Antichrist.”
A close study of John’s letter is required to clarify the issue: John reminds his readers that they had heard that “the antichrist is coming” (1 John 2:18), but then goes on to warn that there will be many antichrists in the future and that even at the time of his writing the letter there existed those that had the spirit of the antichrist. John is the Biblical author who coined the name “Antichrist” in his letters, which were thought to be written between 90-95AD. With John then being one of the last contributors to the Scriptures, it is only logical that no other author of Scripture would have used a term John coined. That does not mean they did not write and warn us about the Antichrist. A close look at Scripture shows that a number of Biblical authors write in detail about the Antichrist, only they each give him a name fitting to their own description of him. Examples would be:
- Daniel has several names for the Antichrist: In two of Daniel’s visions he is called the Little Horn (Daniel 7:8 and 8:9); he is called a contemptible person in 11:21; and a wilful king in chapter 11:36. Then in 9:26, Daniel refers to him as the prince that shall come (KJV).
- Zechariah calls the Antichrist the idol shepherd (Zech. 11:16-17).
- In the apostle Paul’s second letter to the Thessalonians, he calls the Antichrist the man of sin and the son of perdition (2 Thes. 2:3 [KJV]), and that wicked one (2 Thes. 2:8 [KJV]).
- In a vision that the apostle John is given by God, John sees the Antichrist as the Beast (Rev. 13:1). John writes that the Dragon gives “his power and his throne and great authority to the beast” (Rev. 13). John clearly identifies the beast as Satan’s messiah, through whom he will work in the End Times.
The builder of the Tower of Babel was Nimrod, and his name means “rebel”; very possibly, Moses refused to identify the man by name and gave him a suitable nickname. Nimrod is a type of Antichrist in that he established a one-world government, one-world religion and a one-world economy in rebellion to God. It is important to note the name “rebel” is present in many of the Biblical names given to the Antichrist.
Finally, the most powerful Scripture for those who doubt the existence of a future Antichrist must be the warning Jesus gives, “I have come in My Father’s name, and you do not accept me; but if someone else comes in his own name, you will accept him” (John 5:43). Jesus is prophesying of his rejection by the Jews and warning that a man will rise up and make a claim to the title of Messiah, and he will be accepted by the Jews. This man will be the Antichrist.
The Antichrist is a judgement!
The pre-Wrath rapture theorists hold to the belief that the rapture occurs after the “abomination of desolation,” where the Antichrist declares himself to be God at the start of the Great Tribulation, but before the Trumpet Judgements commence. They totally miss the reality that the appearance of the Antichrist at the first seal, which sounds the start of the seven-year Tribulation, is a judgement:
“The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with the works of Satan, signs and wonders, and in every sort of evil that deceives those that are perishing. They perish because they refuse to love the truth and so be saved. For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie and so be condemned… (2 Thess. 2:11)”.
Paul is very clear, those that choose to follow the Antichrist will perish because they rejected Jesus – The Truth – this is an eternal judgement. Paul describes in the book of Romans, how in a similar way God judged the Romans by handing them over to a reprobate mind; God gave them what they wanted which resulted in their physical and spiritual destruction:
“Since they do not feel it worthwhile to retain a knowledge of God, he gave them over to a depraved (reprobate) mind to do what ought not to be done (Romans 1:24)”.
God, after lovingly trying to draw mankind back to righteousness through the Lamb of God, is going to eventually call an end, He will have had enough of the continual rebellion of mankind. So, God will give mankind what they want, a false messiah, the Antichrist. Mankind will have sold themselves into the hands of the enemy, Satan, who seeks their destruction. Anyone who claims that the Antichrist is not a judgement has not read their Bible. A pre-Wrath rapture is a myth.
The Red Horse (6:3-4).
“3 When he opened the second seal, I heard the second living creature say, ‘Come!’ 4 And out came another horse, bright red. Its rider was permitted to take peace from the earth, so that people should slay one another, and he was given a great sword”.
The rider on the red horse will come onto the scene after the start of the Great Tribulation, as nations begin to challenge the Antichrist’s claim to be god. It may appear that Satan has lost control, as nations of the world rebel against his appointed ruler, but it is all part of his plan to destroy mankind. The red horse takes peace from the earth and people begin killing one another.
In Old Testament times horses were used for war and donkeys for labour, so horses are seen as symbols of power strength and conquest. Military dominance in Biblical time was determined by the number of chariots and cavalry a nation’s military possessed. God however, wanted the nation of Israel to trust in Him, and not the number of horses and chariots the king of Israel had in his army; in Deuteronomy, God commanded that when a king comes to power, he “must not acquire many horses” (17:16). Also, both the prophets and psalmists warn the nation of Israel not to place their trust in horses and chariots:
“Woe to those who go down to Egypt for help and rely on horses, who trust in chariots because they are many and in horsemen because they are very strong, but do not look to the Holy One of Israel or consult the Lord!” (Isaiah 31:1).
“Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God” (Psalm 20:7).
The four horsemen must therefore be interpreted as mankind’s rejection of God, and dependence on the wisdom of man. The four horsemen may be seen as both the consequences of the rejection of God for man’s wisdom, and as judgements from God – mankind is handed over to a reprobate mind. A reprobate mind, is a morally stupid mind, where even intelligent people will believe in plainly idiotic ideas. The most idiotic of ideas, will be the belief that the Antichrist is a saviour. So, the four horses with riders are the result of mankind’s decision to follow the Antichrist. The Antichrist riding the white horse will, after the start of the Great Tribulation, be the cause of a number of wars breaking out – the red horse. The consequences of the red horse upon the earth will be found in the black horse and the pale horse.
The Spiritual Parallel:
There will also be spiritual warfare with an attack on the saints of God by the Antichrist, which is recorded in Revelation 13:7: “he is given power to war against the Saints”.
The Black Horse (6:5-6).
“5 When he opened the third seal, I heard the third living creature say, ‘Come!’ And I looked, and behold, a black horse! And its rider had a pair of scales in his hand. 6 And I heard what seemed to be a voice in the midst of the four living creatures, saying, ‘A quart of wheat for a denarius, and three quarts of barley for a denarius, and do not harm the oil and wine!’”
The red horse will “take peace from the earth,” through strife and global conflicts. Wars cause food shortages for a number of reasons: Farmers are forced to become soldiers and stop farming their land, land that was farmed becomes a war zone, supply chains are targeted by the enemy and trade between counties become disrupted. Additionally, war displaces people, who become refugees, cut off not only from their homes, but also from their food supply and their means to earn a living.
The rider of the red horse was given a sword, a symbol of the wars that the judgement would bring, the next rider to go forth is on a black horse, and ominously holds up a pair of scales in his hand. The scales symbolise the effect of the wars on the economy, with food shortages and the need to ration food. So, the black horse symbolises that there will be dark times for mankind, which will result from the collapse of economies, and cause famine and death.
It seems that the rider of the black horse does what a trader in the market would do, he calls out the cost of items “A quart of wheat for a denarius, and three quarts of barley for a denarius”. A denarius was a silver coin that was the equivalent of a day’s wages in the apostle John’s days. So, the horseman is announcing that the ingredients for a loaf of bread will cost a day’s wages, which is less than is necessary for a subsistence diet – the people will begin to starve. The horseman then commands that the “oil and the wine!” should not be damaged, meaning that the very wealthy should still have access to luxury goods.
The Spiritual Parallel:
There will also be a spiritual famine, God has handed mankind over to a reprobate mind (2 Thess. 2:11). Mankind on rejecting God attempts to elevate himself to replace Him. The one-world religion of the Antichrist will be based on the liberal morals of secular humanism.
The Pale Horse (6:7-8)
“7 When he opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature say, “Come!” 8 And I looked, and behold, a pale horse! And its rider’s name was Death, and Hades followed him. And they were given authority over a fourth of the earth, to kill with sword and with famine and with pestilence and by wild beasts of the earth”.
If the appearance of the rider on the black horse holding up a pair of scales was an ominous figure, the arrival of the rider on the sickly pale green horse will be downright terrifying! There will be a great many deaths as a consequence of the wars and famine, and the plagues and diseases that result from them. The Pale Rider follows closely behind war and famine claiming the souls of the dead for Hades. The word Hades is the Greek term for the Hebrew Sheol, a temporary place for the dead, where souls are kept as they await the final resurrection; for the lost, that will mean appearing before the White Throne of Judgement.
The apostle John records that the devastation of the horsemen on the population of the earth will be over a quarter of the earth. Many people automatically take the population of the earth and divide by four to arrive at the approximate number, which according to population statistics will be 2 billion in 2024, with the population expected to reach 8 billion in that year. This will not be accurate, as the consequence of man’s rule without God, will be running parallel with God’s Trumpet and Bowl judgements, throughout the 3½ years of the Great Tribulation. Therefore, people will be dying in great numbers right through the last 3½ years. Remember also that when the Antichrist proclaims himself to be god, he will require all to take the mark of the beast or be put to death. The prophetic words of Jesus must be a warning to all: “For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been from the beginning of the world until now, no, and never will be. And if those days had not been cut short, no human being would be saved” (Matthew 24:21-22b).
Verse 8 indicates that people will not only die by sword, famine and pestilence, but also by wild beasts – it seems even creation is going to turn against mankind. The possibility exists that with their natural food supplies being diminished during the Great Tribulation animals, both herbivore and carnivore, may be moving into urban area to look for food. This would cause a variety of problems with herbivores clashing with people, and carnivores developing a taste for people.
The Spiritual Parallel:
There will be spiritual illness on earth with the Antichrist proclaiming himself to be God.
The Great Tribulation Martyrs (6:9-11)
“9 When he opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain for the word of God and for the witness they had born. 10 They cried out with a loud voice, “O Sovereign Lord, holy and true, how long before you will judge and avenge our blood on those who dwell on the earth?” 11 Then they were each given a white robe and told to rest a little longer, until the number of their fellow servants and their brothers should be complete, who were to be killed as they themselves had been”.
The seals using the symbolism of the four horsemen, covered the devastating consequences of mankind replacing the Word of God with his own philosophies, and following the rule of the Antichrist, now move to reveal what will happen to believers during the Great Tribulation. During Temple sacrifices the priests would pour out the blood of the sacrifices at the base of the brazen alter (Lev. 4:7, 18, 25, 30). The blood represented the life of the sacrifice (Lev. 17:11). The revelation by John of the souls under the alter, points to the Great Tribulation martyrs who will refuse to take the mark of the beast. The Antichrist is given “power to make war against the saints” (Rev. 13:7), their lives are given sacrificially to the glory of God; Paul in his letters echoes this sentiment:
- “Even if I am to be poured out as a drink offering upon the sacrificial offering of your faith, I am glad and rejoice with you all” (Philippians 2:17).
- “For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure has come” (2 Timothy 4:6).
Note that there is no mention of the Church to describe those who had been slain for the Word of God and for the witness they had borne. These are Tribulation saints, not the Church. Further evidence that the Church has been raptured prior to the start of the Tribulation period, is the cry of the souls under the altar: “How long… until you judge the inhabitants of the earth and avenge our blood.” This cannot be members of the Church, for Scripture instructs the Church to pray for those who persecute them and show love to their enemies. Paul reminds the Church of this in Romans 12:19 when he says “do not take revenge my friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: ‘It is mine to avenge: I will repay,’ says the Lord”. Paul goes on to exhort believers to give food and drink to their enemies. The cry for vengeance by those under the altar is indicative of Old Testament believers who regularly prayed to God for His judgement to come down on the enemies of Israel. The imprecatory Psalms are an example of this, where the Psalmists call out for judgement to be brought against those they perceive to be enemies of God. In Psalm 69 David cries out to God, asking Him to “pour out your wrath on them; let your fierce anger overtake them” (Ps. 69:24). Another example would be Jeremiah, one of the great Old Testament prophets, who because of his persecution and suffering was led to desire vengeance against his enemies, “Oh Lord Almighty, you who judge righteously and test the heart and mind, let me see your vengeance upon them (those who were plotting against him) for to you I have committed my cause.” (Jer. 11:20). The cry for vengeance in Revelation 6 can only be understood in the context of the Church period being completed with the rapture, and mankind is being held accountable by God in a similar manner to Old Testament times. Thus, God’s focus is on the Jews, not the Church; hence another name for the Tribulation period is “the time of Jacob’s trouble.” (Jer. 30:7 [KJV]).
In answer to their cry for vengeance, each of them was given a white robe, symbolising righteousness, and that each person under the alter had been cleansed by the blood of Jesus. They are then told to be patient and wait a little longer, until the full number of their fellow servants, their brothers and sisters in the Lord are martyred, just as they had been. Right throughout the Bible believers are continually being told “Be still, and know that I am God” (Psalm 46:10), God is in control, be patient and wait!
The Sixth Seal – a consequence of spiritual depravation (6:12-14)
“12 When he opened the sixth seal, I looked, and behold, there was a great earthquake, and the sun became black as sackcloth, the full moon became like blood, 13 and the stars of the sky fell to the earth as the fig tree sheds its winter fruit when shaken by a gale. 14 The sky vanished like a scroll that is being rolled up, and every mountain and island was removed from its place”.
The sixth seal now moves onto what God is going to be doing during the Great Tribulation, and records an indication of the cosmic events that will take place during the Trumpet and Bowl judgements. There are a number of prophecies that refer to the Day of the Lord as being a time of darkness, literally, figuratively, and spiritually for the world, in a similar manner as the sixth seal:
- Amos 5:18: “Woe to you who desire the day of the LORD! Why would you have the day of the LORD? It is darkness, and not light”.
- Jeremiah 13:16: “Give glory to the LORD your God before He brings darkness, before your feet stumble on the dusky mountains. You wait for light, but He turns it into deep gloom and thick darkness”.
- Jeremiah 30:7: “How awful that day will be! None will be like it! It is the time of Jacob’s trouble, but he will be delivered out of it”.
- Zephaniah 1:15: “That day will be a day of wrath, a day of trouble and distress, a day of destruction and desolation, a day of darkness and gloom, a day of clouds and blackness”.
- Isaiah 8:22: “Then they will look to the earth and see only distress and darkness and the gloom of anguish. And they will be driven into utter darkness”.
The prophet Joel gives a clear warning that the return of the Lord will be preceded by the judgements of the Great Tribulation. The Trumpet and Bowl judgements are the Judgements of God upon a rebellious mankind, and take place in the last 3½ years of the seven-year Tribulation: “And I will show wonders in the heavens and on the earth, blood and fire and columns of smoke. The sun shall be turned to darkness, and the moon to blood, before the great and awesome day of the Lord comes” (Joel 2:30-31). Other prophecies that point to the events of the sixth seal are:
- The terrible earthquake that introduces the sixth seal is written about in Isaiah 2:19, “And people shall enter the caves of the rocks and the holes of the ground, from before the terror of the Lord, and from the splendour of his majesty, when he rises to terrify the earth…”
- In Ezekiel 32:7-8, we read about the darkness of the sun, moon, and stars.
- In Matthew 24:29, Jesus prophesies of the same cosmic signs of the Great Tribulation: “Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken”.
The sixth seal is the final part of the overview, where the first four seals are judgements resulting from man’s actions, and the fifth seal deals with what will happen to believers during the Great Tribulation, and reveals the results of an orchestrated attack on God’s witnesses on earth. The sixth seal describes God’s judgements – two sets of six judgments, the six Trumpet judgements and the six Bowl judgements, two sets of six judgements; for man in sin, all clearly supernatural in origin.
Please remember that these judgements only take place during the Great Tribulation, and avoid the alarmists who will use cosmic signs as an indicator that the rapture is at hand. For example, the blood moon on that occurred on January 21, 2019 coincided with a supermoon, and was titled as the “Super Blood Wolf Moon”, which had a range of “experts” predicting the Day of the Lord and the imminent rapture of the Church. Prophecy is a very broad and detail subject, to take one incident out of context and make predictions is not only ridiculous, but exceedingly irresponsible. Peter (2 Peter 3:3) warns that a Last Day’s sign will be that people become immune to prophecy because of the multiple false predictions people make, and will therefore ignore the true warnings when the Day of the Lord does approach.
The Wrath of the Lamb (6:15-17)
“15 Then the kings of the earth and the great ones and the generals and the rich and the powerful, and everyone, slave and free, hid themselves in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains, 16 calling to the mountains and rocks, ‘Fall on us and hide us from the face of him who is seated on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb, 17 for the great day of their wrath has come, and who can stand?’”.
Verse 15 names every class of mankind from royalty to servant, powerful to the dependant, none shall escape the judgement of the Lord, they will all cling together in fear at the return of the Lord. None will repent as they are sealed by the mark of the beast, so all will be condemned at the Lord’s return. Chapter 6 ends with the question, who then will be able to make a stand? The answer will be only those that have God’s seal on their foreheads! (Revelation 7:3; 9:4). Only a believer will be able to stand before the great wrath of the returning King of kings, as they are justified by grace, the wrath for their sins has been paid for, because of their faith in Jesus.
- “1 Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. 2 Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God” (Romans 5:1-2).
- “Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand” (1 Corinthians 15:1)
- “Testifying that this is the true grace of God in which you stand” (1 Peter 5:12).
Revelation 6 compared with Matthew 24
|Matthew 24||Revelation 6|
|False Christ (Vs. 4-5)||White horse rider (vs. 1-2)|
|Wars (vs. 6)||Red horse – war (vs. 3-4)|
|Famines (vs 7a)||Black horse – Famine (5-6)|
|Death (vs. 7b-8)||Pale horse – Death (vs. 7-8)|
|Martyrs (vs. 9)||Martyrs under the alter (vs. 9-11)|
|Worldwide chaos (vs. 10-13)||Worldwide chaos (vs. 12-17)|
The Day of the Lord
“Alas for the day! For the day of the Lord is near, and as destruction from the Almighty it comes” (Joel 1:15).
The phrase “Day of the Lord” is used five times in the book of Joel (1:15; 2:11; 2:31; 3:14), to understand what is meant by the Day of the Lord, one must understand the difference between the four key days mentioned in Scripture:
- Man’s day. The day that now is, when man has control over human government. 1 Corinthians 4:3, “man’s judgement.” this term literally means man’s day.
- The Day of Christ. Refers to the rapture (1 Cor. 1:8; 5:5; 2 Cor. 1:14; Phil. 1:6, 10; 2:16).
- The Day of the Lord. Refers to the direct intervention of God in the affairs of man after the rapture of the Church. It covers the Tribulation (Rev. 6-19), The Millennial Kingdom (Rev. 20:1-10), and the Great White Throne Judgement (Rev. 20:11-15). It is not only a time of judgement on the wicked, but also a time of great blessing for the redeemed of Israel and the Church – remember a day has both times of dark and light…
- The Day of God. Is mentioned in 2 Peter 3:12, which has reference to the heavens passing away, the elements melting, the earth being renovated by fire, and the establishment of a new heaven and earth, ushering in the eternal state.
It is extremely important for the correct interpretation of the book of Revelation, to understand that the six seals are not as many suppose, the first in a series of three sets of Judgments. The seven sealed scroll that The Lamb of God took possession of, is the legal document recording what must take place before dominion of the Kingdoms of the world are restored to The Lion of the Tribe of Judah. The first four seals are four riders on horses, which symbolise the rejection of God and the trust placed by mankind in the philosophies of man. Mankind turning away from the true Messiah, Jesus, makes way for the counterfeit messiah the Antichrist, and after 3½ of false peace, the consequence for trusting in man’s philosophies play out in the remaining three seals – war, economic hardship and death. There are two other important factors that the seals must deal with, and they are what happens to believers during the Great Tribulation and God’s judgements which are poured out onto mankind, both these factors are explained in the fifth and sixth seals.