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From Silence To Divine Action

Revelation 8:1-5

The scroll was almost completely unrolled. The text revealed by the broken seals was described in the drama of John's vision before God took any action. When John saw the Lamb break open the seventh seal, all heaven fell silent.

Announcing God's Plagues (1)

Revelation 8:6-9

The seventh seal has been broken and the scroll is now fully open. As it was broken, the wrath of God began to be unleashed upon a rebellious world. In his vision, John sees seven angels each with a trumpet to announce the different ways in which God's anger would be experienced on earth. These are like the plagues God sent to rebellious Egypt, but worse, in that they affect a third of the world.

Announcing God's Plagues (2)

Revelation 8:10-13

Two trumpets have already been sounded in heaven (Revelation 8:6-9). Like heralds in a royal court, the trumpets are the command for the unleashing of God's wrath on a rebellious world.

Announcing God's Plagues (3)

Revelation 9:1-6

As the divinely authorised trumpet calls ring out from heaven, so John sees the effect which God's plagues will have on the earth. The fifth trumpet announced another cosmic event with global consequences. Another great star (Revelation 8:10) fell to earth.

Announcing God's Plagues (4)

Revelation 9:7-12

The fifth trumpet signalled the release of locusts from the world of the unbelieving dead and demons. The were not the voracious insects so much feared by rural communities: they obeyed God's instruction not to eat any plant-life. They had the sting of a scorpion but were barred from stinging those who belong to God (

Announcing God's Plagues (5)

Revelation 9:13-16

The sixth trumpet was sounded by the sixth angel. These herald messengers were appointed by God to dramatically introduce the scenes of forthcoming judgement. John saw these graphic images in his vision as the Lord Jesus entrusted terrible future events to him, for John to write down. The purpose was to prepare the church for the time when God takes obvious command of the wheel of history, steering humanity towards His mercy through what might be called plagues.

Announcing God's Plagues (6)

Revelation 9:17-19

The sixth trumpet call, from the sixth angel, started a scene of destruction in which a third of the people remaining on earth after other 'plagues' would die through catastrophic military conflict. Today's reading enlarges John's description of what he saw (

Refusing To Repent

Revelation 9:20-21

The escalating tribulations, which God promised to unleash on the world in the Last Days, as shown by Jesus to John in the vision, were truly dreadful. From 'natural' disasters to cosmic events and global warfare, the catalogue was woeful. The word 'woe' (used in

The Roaring Messenger

Revelation 10:1-4

Just to remind ourselves: we are at the point in the Revelation when the sixth angel has blown the sixth trumpet to announce the death of a further third of the world's population, and only half of the people are left alive. But

The Time Has Come

Revelation 10:5-7

John is watching the drama in his vision, given to him by Jesus Christ. The scene has changed from the throne room of heaven to earth, where a mighty angel stands astride the land and sea with the authority of God (