Revelation; The Sixth Seal

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posted on May, 9 2010 @ 12:24 PM
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I want to offer some thoughts on Revelation ch6 vv12-17.

These are the events of the "sixth seal", of course. In my previous threads, I was looking over the first four seals- the event of the "Four Horsemen"- and then at the "fifth seal"- the reaction of the martyrs, the "souls under the altar".

Now we come to the sixth seal. But I'm not interested so much in the events themselves.

Instead I'm going to be asking the question; what do these events mean for us. These are descriptions filled with echoes of Old Testament passages- so what is that telling us?

The first echo is the "great earthquake". We don't know where that earthquake may be, but it should be reminding us of the earthquake which defines the beginning of Amos.

The collected prophecies of Amos help to mark a change in the way God was dealing with his people. In the past, he had been guiding them, through his prophets, with a mixture of rebuke and encouragement, as the need arose. But the newer "writing prophets" of Israel and Judah were symptoms of a time when God's people were, increasingly, failing to listen. It was now increasingly necessary that God should be warning them about the dangers of disobedience.

So the earthquake which Amos talks about marks a moment of shift, from one emphasis to another. It marks the beginning of a great theme of "judgement", which finally culminated in the fall of Jerusalem to the Babylonians.

So the earthquake in this passage, in the same way, indicates the beginning of the great process of God's judgement upon the world.

So the message in the event is the beginning of God's judgement.

We see events in the heavens; the sun darkens, the moon turns red, and the stars disappear from view- "as the fig-tree sheds its winter fruit when shaken by a gale". The sky then vanishes "like a scroll that is rolled up". In physical terms, these could be the result of something in the atmosphere, interrupting the light.

But what matters for my purposes is that all these things are full of echoes.

We read in Isaiah ch34 v4 that;
"All the host of heaven shall rot away, and the skies roll up like a scroll.
All their host shall fall, as leaves fall from the vine, like leaves falling from the fig-tree."
This prophecy belongs to a time when "the Lord is enraged against all nations"- Isaiah ch34 v2.

And, again, we are told in Joel (ch2 v31) that "the sun shall be turned to darkness, and the moon to blood", in the time before "the great and terrible Day of the Lord".

"The Day of the Lord", in the Old Testament, is essentially the time when God is expected to come with power to impose his will upon the world and put things right. It would be a "great day" in any event, but it becomes a "terrible day", a time of judgement, for anyone who is part of what needs to be put right. In the New Testament, this becomes what Paul calls "The Day of our Lord Jesus Christ"- which appears to be much the same thing.

So the message in these events is the imminence of God's judgement.

Then there's the human response to all these things, which brings another collection of echoes.

We see the kings and great men of the earth hiding in caves and among the rocks. This is exactly what people are doing in Isaiah ch2 v19, when the Lord of Hosts "has a day against all that is proud and lofty, against all that is lifted up and high" (Isaiah ch2 v12).

The same kind of thing is happening in Jeremiah ch4;
"I looked on the mountains, and, lo, they were quaking,
and all the hills moved to and fro"- v24
"For this the earth shall mourn, and the heavens above be black"- v28
"At the noise of horseman and archer, every city takes flight;
they enter thickets; they climb among rocks."- v29
And all this is part of the prophet's warning about the destruction of Jerusalem.

When they reach their refuge, they call upon the mountains to fall upon them and hide them- just like the people of Samaria in Hosea ch10 v8.

Their own assessment of the situation is that "the great day of their wrath [of God and the Lamb] has come, and who can stand before it?" This brings us right back to the central teaching of Joel; "For the Day of the Lord is great and very terrible, who can endure it?"- Joel ch2 v11.

So the message in all these reactions is that the peoples of the earth are recognising the coming of God's judgement.

This is the other side of the coin to the reaction of the martyrs "under the altar", at the opening of the fifth seal.

The martyrs can see the work of God in all these events, and they welcome it.
The people of the world at large can see the work of God in all these events, and it makes them horrified.

In fact, we can now see the "fifth seal" and the "sixth seal" as one of the many "contrasting pairs" of Revelation.
They're both talking about the judgement of God- but they're presenting two different ways of receiving the judgement of God.

(I had, originally, been intending to make some observations about the fact that most of these Old Testament allusions refer to episodes of God' wrath against his own people - but I now think the point is important enough to deserve separate treatment).

-----------

This is the fifth time that I've been looking at one aspect or another of the "seven seals" of Revelation, and I think I've succeeded in demonstrating the overall structure of the episode;

First, there is what I've been calling the "implied background" of ch6- the oppression of God's people, to which God would have been responding. I covered that in "4 Horsemen- Why?"

Then there is the devastating destruction of the "Four Horsemen" event itself, described under the first four seals, which I covered in "4 Horsemen- Running".

Then there is a pair of reactions to this destruction;
The reaction of the martyrs, in the "fifth seal", described in "Souls under the Altar"-
And the reaction of the rest of the world, described in this thread.

Finally, at the beginning of ch7, the destruction comes to an end, for the time being. There is a time of truce.
As I was explaining in "Silence in Heaven", the "time of truce" continues during the "half-an-hour" mentioned at the opening of the seventh seal.

This sets the scene for the next stage, the rise of the Beast, and what he does.
And that sets the scene for the final stage, the destruction of the Beast.




posted on May, 9 2010 @ 12:47 PM
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The Martyrs see that day as good, and bad. Good, because it is ushering in the Era of God, but bad as many people will see God's true wrath. The people who are not of the Christian faith will see it as bad, because they are being punished, but still many people will not convert, because of the "truce". (The point at which God does nothing, and the Rise of the Beast).

Everything in the bible is being fulfilled, read the scriptures and weep, for the end is upon us!

Peace and God Bless.



posted on May, 9 2010 @ 01:26 PM
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I can only add my support.
S&F
Now the gentleman penguins, underSons and wacko flakos will begin flaming your post. This is to be expected. Evil wants to withhold any information regarding Revelations. It knows that it's time is almost up, and the four court press is on! It will attempt to lure away as many souls as possible.
Praise Our G_D Lord Jesus Christ!



posted on May, 9 2010 @ 01:33 PM
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Originally posted by Violater1
I can only add my support.
S&F
Now the gentleman penguins, underSons and wacko flakos will begin flaming your post. This is to be expected. Evil wants to withhold any information regarding Revelations. It knows that it's time is almost up, and the four court press is on! It will attempt to lure away as many souls as possible.
Praise Our G_D Lord Jesus Christ!

Thank you very much for your support, greatly appreciated.
I may be able to get away without being flamed- the experience of my previous threads on the subject is that the flamers have been leaving me alone. Perhaps because I'm not on the "Conspiracies in religion" forum, where most of them seem to hang out.
Anyway, look forward to seeing your reactions to future threads.



posted on May, 9 2010 @ 01:37 PM
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You'd think if the world was going to end, "God" would have chosen to appear mor than once every 3 thousand years don't you think?

It's kind of his fault if we are so astray as he provides no guidance. He trusts the will of men, which by definition is flawed, greedy and cruel.

If the Christian God is the only one, he's certainly not omnipotent and perfect, he's a jealous child.

~Keeper



posted on May, 9 2010 @ 01:45 PM
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Originally posted by tothetenthpower
It's kind of his fault if we are so astray as he provides no guidance. He trusts the will of men, which by definition is flawed, greedy and cruel.

You cannot say "provides no guidance".
The existence of the Bible is supposed to be guidance.
The fact that the Christian believer is surrounded by other Christian believers is supposed to be guidance.
As for the frequency of God's appearance, I'm not going to try to dictate to him how often he ought to be doing things

[edit on 9-5-2010 by DISRAELI]



posted on May, 9 2010 @ 01:50 PM
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Originally posted by DISRAELI

Originally posted by tothetenthpower
It's kind of his fault if we are so astray as he provides no guidance. He trusts the will of men, which by definition is flawed, greedy and cruel.

You cannot say "provides no guidance".
The existence of the Bible is supposed to be guidance.
The fact that the Christian believer is surrouded by other Christian believers is supposed to be guidance.
As for the frequency of God's appearance, I'm not going to try to dictate to him how often he ought to be doing things


But God didn't write the bible, people over a period of centuries wrote the bible, changed it's contents, translated it into different languages, which I might add completely changes the meaning of scripture.

It's a man made piece of literature, therefore MAN'S influence is the prime guider of the Bible, not God.

~Keeper



posted on May, 9 2010 @ 01:56 PM
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Originally posted by tothetenthpower

But God didn't write the bible, people over a period of centuries wrote the bible, changed it's contents, translated it into different languages, which I might add completely changes the meaning of scripture.

It's a man made piece of literature, therefore MAN'S influence is the prime guider of the Bible, not God.

You see Either/Or where I see Both/And.

I believe that God provided the Bible.
I also fully agree with you that men wrote the Bible over a period of centuries.
I believe this is how God did it.

Human action and God's action don't have to be alternatives. One can be the means for the other.



posted on May, 9 2010 @ 02:06 PM
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Originally posted by DISRAELI

Originally posted by tothetenthpower

But God didn't write the bible, people over a period of centuries wrote the bible, changed it's contents, translated it into different languages, which I might add completely changes the meaning of scripture.

It's a man made piece of literature, therefore MAN'S influence is the prime guider of the Bible, not God.

You see Either/Or where I see Both/And.

I believe that God provided the Bible.
I also fully agree with you that men wrote the Bible over a period of centuries.
I believe this is how God did it.

Human action and God's action don't have to be alternatives. One can be the means for the other.


That's a good point.

Let's discuss some things I have issues with though.


To Fear the Lord is wisdom”
--Job 28:28

“...for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God”
-Deut 5:9

*"For our God is a consuming fire!"
-- Hebrews 12:29

*“He cast upon them the
fierceness of his anger, wrath,
and indignation, and trouble,
by sending evil angels among them.
” Psalms 78:49

*“Behold, the day of the
Lord cometh, cruel both with
wrath and fierce anger...”
-- Isaiah 13:9

God Will Kill Ethiopia



"You Ethiopians will also be slaughtered by my sword," says the LORD. And the LORD will strike the lands of the north with his fist. He will destroy Assyria and make its great capital, Nineveh, a desolate wasteland, parched like a desert. The city that once was so proud will become a pasture for sheep and cattle. All sorts of wild animals will settle there. Owls of many kinds will live among the ruins of its palaces, hooting from the gaping windows. Rubble will block all the doorways, and the cedar paneling will lie open to the wind and weather. This is the fate of that boisterous city, once so secure. "In all the world there is no city as great as I," it boasted. But now, look how it has become an utter ruin, a place where animals live! Everyone passing that way will laugh in derision or shake a defiant fist. (Zephaniah 2:12-15 NLT)


So if god is so great, why does he advocate the killing of children, women, and the like?

These are the traits of men NOT an all powerful God. I would hope so anyway.

Don't get me wrong, I do infact respect your religion, true christians have done a lot of good in the world. However, blind faith is the most dangerous tool of control ever created.

~Keeper



posted on May, 9 2010 @ 02:21 PM
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Originally posted by tothetenthpower

Let's discuss some things I have issues with though.


To Fear the Lord is wisdom”
--Job 28:28

“...for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God”
-Deut 5:9


To "fear the Lord" means to understand his authority, to be willing to obey him. For example, if the Lord's command is "You shall behave with justice", then "fearing the Lord" means behaving with justice.

On the subject of "jealousy", Christian theologians have taught since the early days of the church that human emotions cannot, strictly speaking, be attributed to a transcendant God. They can only be applied, at best, analogically. God is described as "jealous" in the Old Testament in two senses. Firstly, he does not want his people to give their obedience to anyone else. That makes sense, because he cannot teach them unless they are listening. Secondly, he is described as jealous for them, meaning that he does not want other nations to destroy them- for one thing, that would bring the whole project to an end, and he would have to start again.

I will deal with other points piece by piece, but I must keep emerging to see what else is happening on this thread.

Incidentally, you must not assume that you are dealing with someone who has "blind faith". I am a former atheist- I walked into this faith with my eyes open, knowing exactly what I was doing.



posted on May, 9 2010 @ 02:21 PM
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Old Jungle saying ....

" The Lord giveth , and the Lord taketh away "

.... He's been here for the last fifty years ,

continually leeched by the antichrist spirit ,

... the undead puffy penguins

Never more



posted on May, 9 2010 @ 02:42 PM
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Originally posted by tothetenthpower
*“He cast upon them the
fierceness of his anger, wrath,
and indignation, and trouble,
by sending evil angels among them.
” Psalms 78:49

*“Behold, the day of the
Lord cometh, cruel both with
wrath and fierce anger...”
-- Isaiah 13:9

God Will Kill Ethiopia

My understanding of the "wrath of God" is that it is the salvation of God, seen from a different angle.
Let me give you an illustration.
A woman is walking down the street- attacked by a mugger- suddenly a mighty wind (ex hypothesi, from God) roars down, snatches him away, and slams him against a wall.
From her viewpoint, this is an act of salvation.
From his viewpoint, this is an act of wrath.

In the Old Testament, the "wrath" of God is expected to be directed either against those acting unjustly, or against those threatening the existence of God's people. I have suggested why God might reasonably have an interest in those things.

And, yes, the details of the expectation are not always particularly Christian; but, as I've already said, the teaching is coming through humans and it is therefore getting mixed up with human feelings. That comes with the territory. If you are educating a child, you do not begin with by expecting a good grasp of particle physics from a two-year old. You start with the alphabet and work upwards. When God set out to teach people to be spiritual, he was faced with the same herculean task, so he did the sensible thing- he did it slowly. What you see in the Old Testament are some of the inky fingerprints that his people left during the learning process.



posted on May, 9 2010 @ 06:03 PM
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Originally posted by ReVoLuTiOn76
The Martyrs see that day as good, and bad. Good, because it is ushering in the Era of God, but bad as many people will see God's true wrath. The people who are not of the Christian faith will see it as bad, because they are being punished, but still many people will not convert, because of the "truce".

Everything in the bible is being fulfilled, read the scriptures and weep, for the end is upon us!

Thank you for your encouraging comments. We seem to be thinking along the same lines.
Mind you, I'm not making any promises about exactly how close "the end" might be.



posted on May, 10 2010 @ 06:04 PM
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Originally posted by tothetenthpower

Let's discuss some things I have issues with though.



*"For our God is a consuming fire!"
-- Hebrews 12:29


I managed to leave this one out the first time round. now let me offer a few thoughts on it.

First, I'd like to note, from the context, that this remark is being put forward as a motive for reverence and awe. Not necessarily abject fear and horror. Just reverence and awe. If you really are dealing with a Creator God, this seems a very reasonable thing to be looking for.

Second; If there is a Creator God, then he will, necessarily, be transcendant. One modern theologian has described him as "Wholly Other". What do you think an encounter with such a God be like? Would it be a case of "Hail-fellow-well-met, let's sit down and have a beer?" Or do you think it might be a rather overwhelming experience? Is it possible that a sense of "consuming fire" would be quite a plausible description of it? Reverence and awe would certainly be appropriate. perhaps even abject fear.

Thirdly; there is elsewhere in the Bible a similar metaphor which describes God as "refining fire". The point of "refining fire", of course, is that it has a purifying effect. It uses heat to separate out what is wanted and what is not wanted, so that what is not wanted can be discarded. It describes the way that God separates out what belongs to him from what is not compatible with him. Which is also another way of describing exactly what "wrath" is all about. "Wrath" is ultimately about God putting things right- removing what does not belong to him, and keeping what does belong. This is the essence of it, underneath the humanly-conceived details.

Now, as humans, we can try to second-guess him and say "Why doesn't he do it sooner? Why does he allow wrong things in the first place?" I'm not going to attempt an explanation, because I don't think we have the right or the ability to second-guess God and tell him how he should be doing things. But I'm satisfied in my own mind that spiritual truth can be found even in the Bible.

[edit on 10-5-2010 by DISRAELI]



posted on May, 11 2010 @ 05:26 PM
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reply to post by DISRAELI
 

I just want to add, further to the comment at the end of the OP;

The next thread in this series will now NOT be "Woman in Heaven" as originally advertised.
Instead, there will be a discussion entitled "The Sins of the Church?", and the "Woman" will be postponed for a week.



posted on Jul, 31 2010 @ 11:21 PM
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i think the sixth seal coincides with the resurrection.

heaven departs and only hell is left on earth.



posted on Aug, 1 2010 @ 05:46 AM
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reply to post by iamnot
 

One problem with this theory, is that even the first resurrection, in the sequence of Revelation, doesn't arrive until ch20.
A lot of things happen between those times.



posted on Aug, 1 2010 @ 07:49 AM
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someone else mentioned this and i agree that revelation is not in sequence. they overlap, one vision clarifying the meaning to another. a little here, a little there. one vision is a more detailed explanation of a seal or a trumpet until you can hear it loud as thunder.

if you chart out revelations, you might notice this.

the fifth seal where the souls are under the altar waiting, this period is actually the time of the two witnesses. the souls are waiting for the witnesses to join them.

that's why the sixth seal being the time of resurrection makes sense. because it is the witnesses who are resurrected.

before the seventh seal is opened, the four winds are held back, the 144000 are sealed. the seal of the living God is the resurrection.



posted on Aug, 1 2010 @ 07:56 AM
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reply to post by Violater1
 

By insulting anyone with a contrary opinion or translation before they even speak I am sure you do Jesus proud...
So, your take on his teachings I take it from your post, is strict intolerance?
If you do not expect debate why even post?

I am reminded here of all the non european peoples that have already been revelated, or raptured, in the last couple of hundred years.
I'll won't say a prayer for them to day, because their god must have loved them, as he called them home before this revelations, and spared them the tribulations.



[edit on 1-8-2010 by Danbones]



posted on Aug, 1 2010 @ 08:00 AM
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reply to post by iamnot
 

I've been working on the plan that the seals, trumpets, and vials, are a sequence. I think it makes sense when the overall picture is presented, but of course I'm only able to present it piece by piece.

So I see the holding back of the winds as creating a very deliberate gap between the seals and the trumpets, a gap which is represented by the "silence for half-an-hour, as explained in the attached thread.

Silence in heaven

Then, at the end of that half hour, the message is "NOW you can let the winds go and harm the earth", and that's what they start doing. Whereas under the seals, they were not harming the earth at all, just disrupting human life. Then the vials are the final stage of the process begun by the trumpets.

The "sealing" would then relate to preparing people for the time of persecution.





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