Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 2 Tim. 2:15

King James AV1611


The Revelation
Revelation was taught by Dr. James Modlish

Chapter Six

Opening The Sealed Book


We now enter the first half of Daniel's 70th week (Dan. 9:27), that seven year period of tribulation. The Lamb has taken the sealed book (His title deed to creation), and is about to open the seals and declare war on the godless world. With the opening of each of the seals in heaven, an important event takes place. Be sure to compare these seals with what Christ taught about the end times in (Matt. 24).



With the opening of the first four seals, one of the four living creatures before the throne (4:6-11) calls for the rider and horse to "Come!". The first horse is white, and his rider is given a bow and a crown. Do not confuse this with (Rev. 19:11), where we definitely have Christ riding in conquest. No, the rider here is Antichrist, the false christ, making his conquest on earth. The fact that he has a bow, but no arrows, indicates that he conquers the nations peacefully. After the church has been raptured, the way will be opened for Antichrist to march in triumph (2 Thess. 2). There will be a false peace temporarily, as he unifies Europe and makes his pact with the Jews (I Thess. 5:2-3). This parallels (Matt. 24:5), and fulfills Christ's prophecy in (Jn. 5:43).



The world wide peace will not last long; for while men are saying "Peace and safety!" then terrible wars will break loose. This parallels (Matt. 24:6-7). Red is a color associated with terror and death. In Revelation we have the red horse of war (6:3-4), the red dragon (12:3), and the red beast (17:3). Note that God gives Antichrist authority to take peace from the earth; this is all a part of the divine plan. He exchanges his arrow less bow for a great sword, and men begin to kill each other. This indicates clearly that the method of international agreement and debate will not bring lasting peace.



Famine and war go together; see (Matt. 24:7). The color black makes one think of famine; see (Jer. 14: 1-2 and Lam. 5:10). The rider (still Antichrist) holds a pair of balances, indicating that we now have government control of food consumption. A measure of wheat was about a day's wages for a worker. In other words, food will be so scarce it will take a man all day to earn enough wages for just a quart of grain! But note that there is no scarcity of oil and wine for the rich. We see here that the rich get richer, and enjoy their luxuries; while the poor get poorer and can hardly make ends meet. This indicates that all man-made schemes to give people even the necessities of life will fail. It is worth noting that grain, oil, and wine were the key products of Israel (Hos. 2:8). Since Antichrist has made his covenant with Israel, he would want to protect her resources.



The word "pale" suggests a leprous color (Lev. 13:49, "greenish"). Death rides this horse, and Hell the soul. God gives them authority to kill one-fourth of the earth's population! Four methods are used; the sword (violence and war); hunger (famine); death, or pestilence (disease accompanies war and famine); and beasts (nature takes over when civilization deteriorates). Read (Ezek. 14:210 for a parallel. Even the wild beasts will be hungry and attack men! What terrible judgments await the Christ rejecting world after the church is taken to heaven! (See Matt. 24:7).



The Old Testament priests poured the blood of the sacrifice under the brazen altar (Lev. 4:7); and since the blood speaks of the life, we have the souls of the martyrs under the heavenly altar. These are people who were saved after the Rapture, but who paid for their testimony with their lives. Their murders were at that time still alive on the earth, and they had not been judged. These martyred saints pray for vengeance; see (Ps. 74:9-10; 79:5; 94:3-4). It is true that saints in this age are told to pray for those who persecute them, and this is what Christ, Stephen, and Paul did (Lk. 23:34.1 Acts 7:60; 2 Tim. 4:16). But this period will be a time of judgment, when God will be answering the prayers of His people for deliverance and vengeance. After all, God is judging the world when they pray; so they are praying in the will of God. This parallels (Matt. 24:9). God promises them that He will answer their prayers; but first, more of their brethren will be slain. We see other saints slain in (12:11; 14:13; and 20:4-5). Among the slain will be Moses and Elijah, God's two witnesses, who even then were ministering on earth (11:1-7). (Rev. 20:4) indicates that these tribulation martyrs will be resurrected to reign during the Millennium.



This parallels (Lk. 21:25-16); see also (Joel 2:30-3:11; 3:15; Isa. 34:2-4; 13:9-10). Three earthquakes are indicated in Revelation (6:12, 11:13, and 16:18-19). There is no doubt that these are literal earthquakes, but along with them, will be disturbances on earth and in the heavens that will frighten great and small. Some students think that these verses describe the results of atomic warfare, with the sun and moon blacked out, great land masses moved, and men hiding in holes in the ground to escape atomic radiation. This may be so; but we need to note particularly that the people hide from Christ and His wrath, and not from some man-made device.

Verse 15 is a vivid description of what life will be like during the first 3 1/2 years of the Tribulation. For one thing, kingdoms will be revived. Today, the movement is toward nationalism and democracy; but this will be changed. (See 16:12-14) Antichrist will rule over the "United States of Europe", the revived Roman Empire, with a number of petty kings following him (17:12-14). Another characteristic of Tribulation days is militarism; there will be "chief captains". This is a Roman title "military tribunes" which goes right along with the revived Roman Empire of Antichrist. There will also be slavery (bondmen); (see 18:13), where "slave and souls of men" are included in the merchandise of Babylon. There will also be great wealth and great poverty, a redistribution of wealth that will wreck the-economy of nations.

It seems, then, that the judgment of the sixth seal involves literal physical destruction in the heavens and on earth, as well as a shaking of the economic and political systems of nations. All of this will make it easier for Antichrist to extend his rule.

The peoples of the earth will know that Christ is sending judgment, but they will not receive Him! They would rather hide in the rocks than in THE ROCK. The first 3 1/2 years of the Tribulation are preparation for the last 3 1/2 years, and this latter period is known as the wrath of God (See 11: 18; 12:12; 14:10; 18:3; etc.) There is a pause, however, between the sixth and seventh seals (as there is also between the sixth and seventh trumpets, 10:1-11:13) for us to see the two great groups of redeemed who will be saved in the Tribulation period. We will examine these groups in our next study.

In summary, note that Antichrist begins his career as a peaceful conqueror, who then resorts to war and economic controls to get control of nations. The world will accept his false peace because it has rejected the Prince of Peace, Jesus Christ.

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