The Seventh-day Shubertian/Adventist Interpretation of the Book of Revelation

Revelation of inestimable value from the Old and New Testaments, especially the testimony of Jesus.
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Zog Has-fallen
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The Seventh-day Shubertian/Adventist Interpretation of the Book of Revelation

Post by Zog Has-fallen » Thu Jun 12, 2014 5:29 pm

Introduction
The Perfected Millerite Interpretation of Daniel 8:14

The Large-Scale Structure of the Book of Revelation

Here are the essential facts from the Millerite perspective that are needed to discern the fundamental, large-scale structure of the book of Revelation:
John wrote:I was in the Spirit on the Lord's Day, and I heard behind me a loud voice, as of a trumpet, saying, "I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last," and, "What you see, write in a book and send it to the seven churches which are in Asia: to Ephesus, to Smyrna, to Pergamos, to Thyatira, to Sardis, to Philadelphia, and to Laodicea." Revelation 1:10-11.
"What you see" refers to all that was revealed to John in this vision.
John wrote:Then I turned to see the voice that spoke with me. And having turned I saw seven golden lampstands, and in the midst of the seven lampstands One like the Son of Man, clothed with a garment down to the feet and girded about the chest with a golden band. His head and hair were white like wool, as white as snow, and His eyes like a flame of fire; His feet were like fine brass, as if refined in a furnace, and His voice as the sound of many waters; He had in His right hand seven stars, out of His mouth went a sharp two-edged sword, and His countenance was like the sun shining in its strength. And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as dead. But He laid His right hand on me, saying to me, "Do not be afraid; I am the First and the Last. I am He who lives, and was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore. Amen. And I have the keys of Hades and of Death. Write the things which you have seen, and the things which are, and the things which will take place after this. Revelation 1:12-19.
Verse 19 repeats the directive given to John in verse 11. Here it's broken down in delightfully simple terms. "Write the things which you have seen." The writing was to include the appearing of Christ to John (chap. 1). "and the things which are." John was to write about the condition of the churches in his own day (chaps 2-3). "and the things which will take place after this" (chap 4 onwards).

Rev. 4:1 says,
After these things I looked, and behold, a door standing open in heaven. And the first voice which I heard was like a trumpet speaking with me, saying, "Come up here, and I will show you things which must take place after this." Revelation 4:1.
Here is Shubert's outline of the book of Revelation:

1. A Call To Overcome (Revelation 1-3).
2. The Court Assembled (Revelation 4-5).

3. The First Scenario (Revelation 6).
4. The Second Scenario (Revelation 7-11).
5. The Third Scenario (Revelation 12-18).

6. The Court’s Final Verdict (Revelation 19-20).
7. The Reward Of Those Who Overcome (Revelation 21-22).


A scenario is a reasonably continuous sequence of either expected or supposed events. An interlude then is whatever obviously breaks and noticeably disrupts that natural sequence. From a very straightforward reading of Revelation, it clearly follows that the three scenarios are systematically interrupted at regular intervals. There is an interlude between the 6th and 7th seal (Rev 7), between the 6th and 7th trumpet (Rev 10:1--11:13), and between the 6th and 7th vial (Revelation 16:13-16). [1], [2], [3].

Here is a crucial question. What do these three scenarios refer to?

Before I present Shubert's answer, let’s hastily display the literary structure of the vision of Amos 7:1-6, notice the “canceled conclusions” and mention, for emphasis, that Amos has three scenarios.
This is what the Sovereign Lord showed me: He was preparing swarms of locusts after the king’s share had been harvested and just as the second crop was coming up. When they had stripped the land clean, I cried out, “Sovereign Lord, Forgive! How can Jacob survive? He is so small!”

So the Lord relented.
“This will not happen,” the Lord said.
This is what the Sovereign Lord showed me:

The Sovereign Lord was calling for judgment by fire; it dried up the great deep and devoured the land. Then I cried out, “Sovereign Lord, I beg you, stop! How can Jacob survive? He is so small!”

So the Lord relented.
“This will not happen either,” the Sovereign Lord said.

This is what He showed me: .... [a third scenario.]
The large-scale structure of the book of Revelation may be summarized as follows. In the first scenario, a book is being opened. In the second scenario, a book is opened. In the third scenario, the gospel to the world includes the message that the hour of God's judgment has come.

Therefore, the interpretation Shubert suggests for the book of Revelation is this. The first scenario expresses the thought that an imminent return was possible for the Apostolic church. That conclusion was canceled and the prophetic drama shifts to a second scenario. The second scenario was the possible end of the world during the Millerite Movement in 1844. That possibility was also canceled as foretold in Scripture. We are now in the third and final scenario.

Here are the fundamental facts that Shubert has listed elsewhere on the three scenarios:

Each scenario is a complete unit of prophecy, i.e., each scenario tells a story and reaches to an end of time.

The three scenarios emphasize one especially important feature: The gospel commission is fulfilled in each of them. The white horse of the first seal, the two ascending witnesses, and the three angels of Revelation 14 all refer to the gospel being proclaimed with power and great glory just before the end of the world.

In each scenario, a percentage of the earth’s population is killed before the return of Christ. In the first scenario: 1/4 of the earth are killed with "sword and with famine and with pestilence and by the wild beasts of the earth" (6:8). In the second scenario, a third of mankind is killed, by three plagues: fire, smoke & brimstone (9:17,18). In the third scenario, the great river Euphrates, symbolizing all the wicked that support Babylon, is dried up (16:12 cf. 17:1,15).

There are remarkable parallels between the seven trumpet judgments and the seven last plagues.
There are remarkable parallels between the first scenario and the Olivet discourse.

Regarding the second and third scenario:
  • Both scenarios refer to the end of Christ’s priestly intercession (8:5 /15:8).
  • Both scenarios allude to the end of repentance (9:20,21 /16:9,11).
  • There are parallels in thunderings and lightning (more on that later).
Shubert's interpretation:

“Evil men and impostors will proceed from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived” (2 Timothy 3:13). The longer God delays in pouring out His final judgments, the worse those judgments will be.

We’re seeing possible ends of the world in different periods of time. As God revises His threats with greater and more severe judgments, the previous scenarios are canceled.

I see the second and third scenarios as comparatively close to each other in time. This naturally accounts for the similarity in the trumpets and vials. Their dissimilarity with the judgments that were to fall in the first century suggests that the end of the world was delayed far beyond that time.

The many parallel events between the three scenarios are all comprehended by the term “multiple scenarios.” If the world were scheduled to end in 1844 but for whatever reason God delayed the end for another 45, 65 or 180 years, wouldn’t you expect the final judgments to be similar?

Christ's Two Scenario Scheme

I advise believers to study, in exquisite detail, the connection between the Olivet discourse and the first two scenarios of Revelation.

In Matthew 24, Jesus presented two irreconcilable prophecies that are blended together almost invisibly. One prophecy is an exact, unmistakable delineation of future events. The other insists on your ignorance of the future and cautions you to be ready no matter what.

The distinct prophecies Matthew 24:1-35 and Matthew 24:36-51 are to be interpreted according to the thesis of multiple scenarios. The first refers to a possible end of the world in the first century. The second applies to a certain indeterminable future. Jesus continues His instruction about the second scenario in Matthew 25.

“At that time the kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom” (Matthew 25:1).

Verse 5 is a key verse:

“Now while the bridegroom was delaying, they all got drowsy and began to sleep” (Matthew 25:5).

Following the parable of the Ten Virgins, Christ tells the parable of the Talents. Note the parallel idea:

After a long time the master of those servants returned and settled accounts with them” (Matthew 25:19).

It is very evident that Jesus was referring to two scenarios in Matthew 24: the first applies to Christ’s Second Coming as the culmination of a possible end of the world in the first century; the second refers to His return after a long delay.
Be dressed ready for service and keep your lamps burning, like men waiting for their master to return from a wedding banquet, so that when he comes and knocks they can immediately open the door for him. It will be good for those servants whose master finds them watching when he comes. I tell you the truth, he will dress himself to serve, will have them recline at the table and will come and wait on them. It will be good for those servants whose master finds them ready, even if he comes in the second or third watch of the night. But understand this: If the owner of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have let his house be broken into. You also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.”
Peter asked, “Lord, are you telling this parable to us, or to everyone?”
The Lord answered, “Who then is the faithful and wise manager, whom the master puts in charge of his servants to give them their food allowance at the proper time? It will be good for that servant whom the master finds doing so when he returns. I tell you the truth, he will put him in charge of all his possessions. But suppose the servant says to himself, ‘My master is taking a long time in coming,’ and he then begins to beat the menservants and maidservants and to eat and drink and get drunk. The master of that servant will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour he is not aware of. He will cut him to pieces and assign him a place with the unbelievers.” Luke 12:35-46.
The second watch was from between 9PM to midnight. The third watch was from midnight to 3AM. I believe that the midnight cry of Mt 25:6, “Behold, the bridegroom! Come out to meet him”, was given on the second watch.

Seventh-day Adventists of the past have understood the Olivet Discourse to be a blended prophecy:
Ellen G. White wrote:As Christ's attention was attracted to the magnificence of the temple, what must have been the unuttered thoughts of that Rejected One! The view before Him was indeed beautiful, but He said with sadness, I see it all. The buildings are indeed wonderful. You point to these walls as apparently indestructible; but listen to My words: The day will come when "there shall not be left one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down." {DA 627.2}

Christ's words had been spoken in the hearing of a large number of people; but when He was alone, Peter, John, James, and Andrew came to Him as He sat upon the Mount of Olives. "Tell us," they said, "when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of Thy coming, and of the end of the world?" Jesus did not answer His disciples by taking up separately the destruction of Jerusalem and the great day of His coming. He mingled the description of these two events. Had He opened to His disciples future events as He beheld them, they would have been unable to endure the sight. In mercy to them He blended the description of the two great crises, leaving the disciples to study out the meaning for themselves. When He referred to the destruction of Jerusalem, His prophetic words reached beyond that event to the final conflagration in that day when the Lord shall rise out of His place to punish the world for their iniquity, when the earth shall disclose her blood, and shall no more cover her slain. This entire discourse was given, not for the disciples only, but for those who should live in the last scenes of this earth's history. {DA 628.1}
While there are many examples of Ellen White misunderstanding Scripture, I generally accept her claims of having inspired dreams and visions. I also believe in revelation that is beyond grammatical-historical exegesis. [4]. Naturally, understanding a communication in a plain and straightforward sense is the most logical place to begin. Nevertheless, I find the following dream/vision strangely compelling, where it was very likely revealed to Ellen White that the remnant will be encouraging one another with the facts about conditionality and three Scripture-based scenarios:

A company was presented before me ... waiting and watching. Their eyes were directed heavenward, and the words of their Master were upon their lips: "What I say unto you I say unto all, Watch." "Watch ye therefore: for ye know not when the Master of the house cometh, at even, or at midnight, or at the cockcrowing, or in the morning: lest coming suddenly He find you sleeping." The Lord intimates a delay before the morning finally dawns. But He would not have them give way to weariness, nor relax their earnest watchfulness, because the morning does not open upon them as soon as they expected. The waiting ones were represented to me as looking upward. They were encouraging one another by repeating these words: "The first and second watches are past. We are in the third watch, waiting and watching for the Master's return. There remains but a little period of watching now." I saw some becoming weary; their eyes were directed downward, and they were engrossed with earthly things, and were unfaithful in watching. They were saying: "In the first watch we expected our Master, but were disappointed. We thought surely He would come in the second watch, but that passed, and He came not. We may be again disappointed. We need not be so particular. He may not come in the following watch. We are in the third watch, and now we think it best to lay up our treasure on the earth, that we may be secure against want." Ellen G. White, Testimonies for the Church Volume 2, p. 192.

I saw that watch after watch was in the past. Ibid. p. 193.


Conclusion

Shubert's thesis is correct:

The impact of free choice on the divine purpose has been firmly illustrated in Scripture: As obstacles arise, detours are taken and the natural long term result of man's free will (in response to the promises and threatenings of God) is that the prophetic view of the future continually develops, unfolds, and changes. Millerite eschatology has been perfected and now both enhances and substantiates the Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, Vol 7 p. 729:

"At any one of various critical points in the history of this world, divine justice could have proclaimed, `it is done!' and Christ might have come to inaugurate His righteous reign. Long ago He might have brought to fruition His plans for the redemption of this world. As God offered Israel the opportunity to prepare the way for His eternal kingdom upon the earth, when they settled the Promised Land and again when they returned from their exile in Babylon, so He gave the church of apostolic times the privilege of completing the gospel commission. Another such opportunity came with the great second advent awakening of the 19th century. But in each instance God's chosen people failed to take advantage of the opportunity thus graciously accorded them."

Shubert also takes credit for perfecting Sir Isaac Newton's remarkably accurate assessment of Biblical eschatology:

"Prophecy is a wonderful combination of [conditionality] and [foreknowledge]. Enough of God's purpose is revealed to act powerfully upon the heart and conscience of those to whom the heavenly message is sent, but not enough to make fatalists of them, to paralyze human effort, or to coerce the human will: enough to prove the message to have been a true word from Him to whom alone the unknown future is fully known, but not enough to enable man to foresee with certainty when and how that purpose is to be realized" (Sir Isaac Newton, cited by Desmond Ford in Crisis, Vol 1, p. 25).

Newton originally wrote "the clear and the obscure."


Zog Has-fallen
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2. The Court Assembled (Revelation 4-5)

Post by Zog Has-fallen » Fri Jun 27, 2014 4:51 pm

Focus on the Throne Room:
In the temple of God everything says, “Glory!” (Ps. 29:9). Consider Revelation 4-5; Everything says, “Glory!” The first thing we see is a door open in heaven (4:1). That door is to the throne room of God (4:2 ff.). The throne room is center stage for what follows. See Revelation 8:3,5; 9:13; 11:1,2,16,19; 14:15,17,18; 15:5,6,8; 16:1,7,17.

Court Is Now In Session:
The book of Revelation elaborates upon the judgment scene of Daniel 7. Consider the parallels:
  • A focus on the Ancient of Days and His throne: Daniel 7:9 cf. Rev. 4:2,3.

  • Many thrones around the throne of God: Daniel 7:9 cf. Revelation 4:4.

  • A great assembly around the throne: Daniel 7:10 cf. Revelation 5:11.

  • The Son of Man coming before the Father: Daniel 7:13 cf. Revelation 5:7.

  • A focus on book/s: Daniel 7:10 cf. Revelation 5:1-9.

  • The Lamb receives a kingdom (cf. Luke 19:11,12): Daniel 7:14 cf. Revelation 5:12.
The heavenly court was assembled in the first century; that’s when Christ took possession of the book, but the book was not opened until 1844.

References and Notes
After quoting Revelation 5:1-3, which you recall begins with the Father having a sealed book in His hand, Ellen White states: “There in His open hand lay the book, the roll of the history of God’s providences, the prophetic history of nations and the church. Herein was contained the divine utterances, His authority, His commandments, His laws, the whole symbolic counsel of the Eternal, and the history of all ruling powers in the nations. In symbolic language was contained in that roll the influence of every nation, tongue, and people from the beginning of earth’s history to its close” (Letter 65, dated, August 23, 1898).

The book of destiny is also a title deed:
“The world does not acknowledge that, at an infinite cost, Christ has purchased the human race. They do not acknowledge that by creation and by redemption He holds a just claim to every human being. But as the Redeemer of the fallen race, He has been given the deed of possession, which entitles Him to claim them as His property” (E.G.W., Questions on Doctrine, p. 670).

Footnotes:
Respected commentaries agree with these identifications.
All scholars agree that no part of the book can be read (or executed) until all the seals have been broken.
What do you think of Christ's Teaching on the Judgment of Professing Christians?
The great F.A.S.O.D. -- the Final, Awesome Settling of Destiny.

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3. The First Scenario (Revelation 6)

Post by Zog Has-fallen » Fri Jun 27, 2014 4:58 pm

THE FIRST SCENARIO

‘And I saw when the lamb broke one of the seven seals, and I heard one of the four living creatures saying as with a voice of thunder, “Come.” And I looked, and behold, a white horse, and he who sat on it had a bow; and a crown was given to him; and he went out conquering, and to conquer’ (Revelation 6:1,2).

“And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached throughout the whole world for a witness to all nations, and then the end shall come” (Matthew 24:14).

‘And when He broke the second seal, I heard the second living creature saying, “Come.” And another, a red horse went out; and to him who sat on it, it was granted to take peace from the earth, and that men should slay one another; and a great sword was given to him’ (Revelation 6:3,4).

“And you will be hearing of wars of rumors of wars; see that you are not frightened, for those things must take place.” “Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom” (Matthew 24:6,7).

‘And when He broke the third seal, I heard the third living creature saying, “Come.” And I looked, and behold, a black horse; and he who sat on it had a pair of scales in his hand. And I heard as it were a voice in the center 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 the wine” ’ (Revelation 6:5,6).

“And in various place there will be famines” (Matthew 24:7).

‘And when He broke the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature saying, “Come.” And I looked, and behold, an ashen horse; and he who sat on it had the name “Death”; and Hades was following with him. And authority was given to them over a fourth of the earth, to kill with sword and with famine and with pestilence and by the wild beasts of the earth’ (Revelation 6:7,8).

“Wars and disturbances” (Luke 21:9); “Plagues and famines” (Luke 21:11).

“But you will be betrayed even by parents and brothers and relatives and friends, and they will put some of you to death” (Luke 21:16).

‘And when He broke the fifth seal, I saw underneath the altar the souls of those who had been slain because of the word of God, and because of the testimony which they had maintained; and they cried out with a loud voice, saying, “How long, O Lord, holy and true, wilt Thou refrain from judging and avenging our blood on those who dwell on the earth?” And there was given to each of them a white robe; and they were told that they should rest for a little while longer, until the number of their fellow servants and their brethren who were to be killed even as they had been, should be completed also’ (Revelation 6:9-11).

You will be brought “before kings and governors for My name’s sake. It will lead to an opportunity for your testimony” (Luke 21:12-13). “Then they will deliver you up to tribulation, and will kill you, and you will be hated by all nations on account of My name” (Matthew 24:9). “Yet not a hair of your head will perish. By your perseverance you will win your souls” (Luke 21:17-18).

'And I looked when He broke the sixth seal, and there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth made of hair, and the whole moon became like blood; and the stars of the sky fell to the earth, as a fig tree casts its unripe figs when shaken by a great wind. And the sky was split apart like a scroll when it is rolled up; and every mountain and island were moved out of their places. And the kings of the earth and the great men and the commanders and the rich and the strong and every slave and free man, hid themselves in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains; and they said to the mountains and to the rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the presence of Him who sits on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb; for the great day of their wrath has come; and who is able to stand?” ’ (Revelation 6:12-17).

“But immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will fall from the sky, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken, and then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky with power and great glory” (Matthew 24:29,30).

Then the seventh and final seal is broken (Revelation 8:1).

The meaning of this seal is often misunderstood. Later on, we will study the matter in greater detail, but for now, can you guess what the conclusion to this scenario must be? Let me supply three hints from Scripture:

“But when these things begin to take place, straighten up and lift up you heads, because your redemption is drawing near” (Luke 21:28).

“Even so you, too, when you see these things happening, recognize that the kingdom of God is near” (Luke 21:30).

“But keep on the alert at all times, praying in order that you may have strength to escape all these things that are about to take place, and to stand before the Son of Man” (Luke 21:36).

It is the day of judgment, the time of redemption, and the coming of the kingdom of God. Please read Matthew 25.

Additional Notes

The First Seal
In defense of the Olivet Discourse being the basis of the seals, let's compare the language of Zechariah 10:3-5 with the first seal of Revelation 6.

My anger is kindled against the shepherds,
And I will punish the male goats;
For the LORD of hosts has visited His flock, the house of Judah,
And will make them like His majestic horse in battle.

From them will come the cornerstone,
From them the tent peg,
From them the bow of battle,
From them every ruler, all of them together.

They will be as mighty men,
Treading down the enemy in the mire of the streets in battle;
And they will fight, for the LORD will be with them;
And the riders on horses will be put to shame.

From these verses it's clear that God's people have been compared to God's majestic horse in battle. If you turn to Revelation 19:11 you'll see that the horse Jesus rides into battle is white. Every ruler wears a crown so that much is understood in the Zechariah reference. It also mentions the bow of battle. If you look again at the white horse and rider in Revelation 6 you would see a remarkable connection with the 3 verses just quoted, Zechariah 10:3-5.

The Second Seal
War between nations follows the great spiritual warfare and conquests of Christ.

The Third Seal
The cost of wheat and barley here are at famine prices. Famine commonly follows war. Notice that famines were to appear in various places (Matthew 24:7), but here they are global.

The Fourth Seal
This summarizes the death due to sword and famine in the previous two seals, adds pestilence (Luke 21:11), plus a new element, wild beasts. Wild beasts are not mentioned in the Olivet discourse (if taken literally) but they do fit naturally into this account of the great tribulation. The imagery is taken from Jeremiah 15:2,3 and Jeremiah 24:10.

The Fifth Seal
Martyrdom on a larger scale now seems to replace a milder account of the great tribulation: Luke 21:12,16. When the souls cried out, “How long O Lord?”, they were told to go back to sleep for a little while longer, until the number of martyrs reached the full number. The delay seems reminiscent of Christ’s words: “The end is not yet” (Matthew 24:6).

The Sixth Seal
This seal blends the signs of the end (Luke 21: 25-30; Matthew 24:29) with the regret and terror of those who are found guilty at His second coming (Matthew 24:30). This event clearly echoes Luke 23:26-31 which was to have been fulfilled in Christ’s generation.

In this seal, Christ is seen coming, the world has ended “for the great day of God’s wrath has come.” This verse ends chapter 6 with the question: “and who is able to stand?” Chapter 7 answers: ... those who are sealed of God, the one hundred and forty-four thousand (7:1-8).

We see here yet another reference to the Olivet discourse. Four winds of destruction are about to be released by four angels (7:1). In Matthew 24:31, the elect are gathered out of four winds.

Additional Commentary
It Almost Happened!
The Meaning of the Crown in Revelation 6:2

Zog Has-fallen
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4. The Second Scenario (Revelation 7-11)

Post by Zog Has-fallen » Fri Jun 27, 2014 5:21 pm

THE SECOND SCENARIO

7:1-3. After this I saw four angels standing at the four corners of the earth, holding back the four winds of the earth, so that no wind should blow on the earth or on the sea or on any tree. 2 And I saw another angel ascending from the rising of the sun, having the seal of the living God; and he cried out with a loud voice to the four angels to whom it was granted to harm the earth and the sea, 3 saying, "Do not harm the earth or the sea or the trees, until we have sealed the bond-servants of our God on their foreheads."

The four angels "represent divine agencies in the world holding back the forces of evil until the work of God on human hearts is complete" (SDA.BC Vol 7).

There is no gap in the first scenario (Revelation 6); There, the winds of strife never cease to blow. Where then do we place this scene of relative calm if the great tribulation began in the first century and was to continue to the very end of time? (Matthew 24:15-21,29-31). Answer: This is clearly the beginning of a second scenario.

4 And I heard the number of those who were sealed, one hundred and forty-four thousand, sealed from every tribe of the sons of Israel.

These bond-servants of God come from all the tribes of spiritual Israel (vss 5-8). The Millerites were such a remnant. They did in fact come from all the denominations in the Christian Church and were the largest such interfaith movement in history. They were to be the one hundred and forty-four thousand.

8:1 And when He broke the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour.

Thus far, the throne room has been filled with praise and adoration, but now, as in a court, all are quiet with an awesome reverence as the Judge of all the earth breaks the final seal to the book of destiny. The Lamb now goes through His record book. John was painfully aware of how long this awesome scene of investigation was presented before him, for he was writing down what he saw as the images passed through his mind. See 10:4. He later beheld a panoramic view of many centuries within a short time, yet he estimated the silence to last half an hour. This tells us that the opening of the book is a most important event.

2. And I saw the seven angels who stand before God; and seven trumpets were given to them.

3. And another angel came and stood at the altar, holding a golden censer; and much incense was given to him, that he might add it to the prayers of all the saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne. 4 And the smoke of the incense, with the prayers of the saints, went up before God out of the angel’s hand.

5. And the angel took the censer; and he filled it with the fire of the altar and threw it to the earth; and there followed peals of thunder and sounds and flashes of lightning and an earthquake.

6. And the seven angels who had the seven trumpets prepared themselves to sound them.

7. And the first sounded, and there came hail and fire, mixed with blood, and they were thrown to the earth; and a third of the earth was burnt up, and a third of the trees were burnt up, and all the green grass was burnt up.

8. And the second angel sounded, and something like a great mountain burning with fire was thrown into the sea; and a third of the sea became blood; 9 and a third of the creatures, which were in the sea and had life, died; and a third of the ships were destroyed.

10. And the third angel sounded, and a great star fell from heaven, burning like a torch, and it fell on a third of the rivers and on the springs of waters; 11 and the name of the star is called Wormwood; and a third of the waters became wormwood; and many men died from the waters, because they were made bitter.

12. And the fourth angel sounded, and a third of the sun and a third of the moon and a third of the stars were smitten, so that a third of them might be darkened and the day might not shine for a third of it, and the night in the same way.

13. And I looked, and I heard an eagle flying in midheaven, saying with a loud voice, "Woe, woe, woe, to those who dwell on the earth, because of the remaining blasts of the trumpet of the three angels who are about to sound!"

9:1 And the fifth angel sounded, and I saw a star from heaven which had fallen to the earth; and the key of the bottomless pit was given to him. 2. And he opened the bottomless pit; and smoke went up out of the pit, like the smoke of a great furnace; and the sun and the air were darkened by the smoke of the pit.

3. And out of the smoke came forth locusts upon the earth; and power was given them, as the scorpions of the earth have power.

4. And they were told that they should not hurt the grass of the earth, nor any green thing, nor any tree, but only the men who do not have the seal of God on their foreheads.

5. And they were not permitted to kill anyone, but to torment for five months; and their torment was like the torment of a scorpion when it stings a man. 6. And in those days men will seek death and will not find it; and they will long to die and death flees from them.

7. And the appearance of the locusts was like horses prepared for battle; and on their heads, as it were, crowns like gold, and their faces were like the faces of men. 8. And they had hair like the hair of women, and their teeth were like the teeth of lions. 9. And they had breastplates like breastplates of iron; and the sound of their wings was like the sound of chariots, of many horses rushing to battle. 10. And they have tails like scorpions, and stings; and in their tails is their power to hurt men for five months. 11. They have as king over them, the angel of the abyss; his name in Hebrew is Abaddon, and in the Greek he has the name Apollyon.

12. The first woe is past; behold, two woes are still coming after these things.

13. And the sixth angel sounded, and I heard a voice from the four horns of the golden altar which is before God, 14 one saying to the sixth angel who had the trumpet, "Release the four angels who are bound at the great river Euphrates." 15. And the four angels, who had been prepared for the hour and day and month and year, were released, so that they might kill a third of mankind.

16. And the number of the armies of the horsemen was two hundred million; I heard the number of them. 17. And this is how I saw in the vision the horses and those who sat on them: the riders had breastplates the color of fire and of hyacinth and of brimstone; and the heads of the horses are like the heads of lions; and out of their mouths proceed fire and smoke and brimstone. 18. And a third of mankind was killed by these three plagues, by the fire and the smoke and the brimstone, which proceeded out of their mouths. 19. For the power of the horses is in their mouths and in their tails; for their tails are like serpents and have heads; and with them they do harm.

20. And the rest of mankind, who were not killed by these plagues, did not repent of the works of their hands, so as not to worship demons, and the idols of gold and of silver and of brass and of stone and of wood, which can neither see nor hear nor walk; 21 and they did not repent of their murders nor of their sorceries nor of their immorality nor of their thefts.

11:14 The second woe is past; behold, the third woe is coming quickly.

15. And the seventh angel sounded; and there arose loud voices in heaven, saying, "The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord, and of His Christ; and He will reign forever and ever." 16. And the twenty-four elders, who sit on their thrones before God, fell on their faces and worshiped God, 17 saying "We give Thee thanks, O Lord God, the Almighty, who art and who wast, because Thou hast taken Thy great power and hast begun to reign."

18. The nations were enraged, and God’s wrath came, and the time came for the dead to be judged, and the time to give their reward to His bond-servants the prophets and to the saints and to those who fear His name, the small and the great, and to destroy those who destroy the earth.

19. And the temple of God which is in heaven was opened; and the ark of His covenant appeared in His temple, and there were flashes of lightning and sounds and peals of thunder and an earthquake and a great hailstorm.

The Church with the Lion's Roar (Revelation 10:1-3)

The roar of a lion indicates that the angel speaks with the majestic authority of God through his word. The description of the angel’s voice as “loud” or “great” is not unique. However, no other figure in Revelation speaks with the voice of a lion, as does the angel here in 10:3, and he does so only once. In the OT God is likened to a lion. In Job 10:16 God’s majestic power is compared to the lion’s prowess as a hunter (see also Hos 5:14, Amos 3:12). In Amos 3:8 the Word of God impels the prophet to speak it just as surely as the roar of the lion incites fear. And the lion, as it stands fearlessly over its prey, is used in a simile of God’s judgment against his unfaithful people (Isaiah 31:4) and as a metaphor for God’s judgment of all peoples on earth, including Israel (Jeremiah 25:30-38). While the lion is used on occasion in reference to mighty men of renown, in the OT it is never so used in reference to angels; in the heavenly sphere it is used only of God. In all of biblical literature, only the voice of God (Hosea 11:10) and the angel of Revelation 10 are likened to the voice of a lion.

It is little wonder that the voice of this angel has been compared to or understood to be “that of the deity.” … There is no other voice that is equal to his, for it is with the voice of God that the angel speaks. The Lion’s voice--like the cloud and rainbow, the angel’s radiant countenance, his legs of fire, and especially his gigantic size--demands for the sake of the mission which he will command John and the church to undertake (10:11). It is a mission that will cause all creation to tremble, but especially all people. In the same way that the roar of a lion instills fear and awe (cf. Amos 3:8) and the lion possesses a roar which no human can outshout, so the mission of John and the church as they speak the message of God will overcome all opposition. It is a mission that will instill fear because the message is one of judgment--judgment that serves the purpose of repentance if the message is heeded (Jeremiah 25:30-38; cf. Revelation 9:20-21; 16:10-11). -- Louis A. Brighton, Concordia Commentary, Revelation, p. 266.


The Millerites were to be invincible witnesses for 3&1/2 years
Revelation 11:1-13, cf. Acts 4:31, Daniel 12:6-7.

The prophesied invincibility of the Millerites is an obvious update to the words of Christ:

Luke 10:19
Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you.


The Extent and Power of the Millerite Movement

Based largely upon the apocalyptic books of Daniel and Revelation, the theology of the Advent Movement was discussed in the newspapers as well as in theological journals. New Testament eschatology competed with stock market quotations for front-page space, and the "seventy weeks," "twenty-three hundred days," and "the abomination of desolation" (Daniel 8-9) were common subjects of conversation.

Lest anyone reading the various accounts of the rise of "Millerism" in the United States come to the conclusion that Miller and his followers were misguided, the following facts should be known: The Great Advent Awakening movement that spanned the Atlantic from Europe was bolstered by a tremendous wave of contemporary biblical scholarship. Although Miller himself lacked academic theological training, actually scores of prophetic scholars in Europe and the United States had espoused Miller's views before he himself announced them. In reality, his was only one more voice proclaiming the 1843/1844 fulfillment of Daniel 8:14, or the 2300-day period allegedly dating from 457 B.C. and ending in A.D. 1843-1844. Walter Martin, The Kingdom of the Cults, (1997 edition), pp. 521-522.


The Most Important Facts about the Millerite Movement

"I believe that God will still justify my preaching to the world." - William Miller, Low Hampton, August 1, 1845.



The Millerites could have completed the work

The history of ancient Israel is a striking illustration of the past experience of the Adventist body. God led His people in the advent movement, even as He led the children of Israel from Egypt. In the great disappointment their faith was tested as was that of the Hebrews at the Red Sea. Had they still trusted to the guiding hand that had been with them in their past experience, they would have seen the salvation of God. If all who had labored unitedly in the work in 1844, had received the third angel's message and proclaimed it in the power of the Holy Spirit, the Lord would have wrought mightily with their efforts. A flood of light would have been shed upon the world. Years ago the inhabitants of the earth would have been warned, the closing work completed, and Christ would have come for the redemption of His people.

It was not the will of God that Israel should wander forty years in the wilderness; He desired to lead them directly to the land of Canaan and establish them there, a holy, happy people. But "they could not enter in because of unbelief." Hebrews 3:19. Because of their backsliding and apostasy they perished in the desert, and others were raised up to enter the Promised Land. In like manner, it was not the will of God that the coming of Christ should be so long delayed and His people should remain so many years in this world of sin and sorrow. But unbelief separated them from God. As they refused to do the work which He had appointed them, others were raised up to proclaim the message. In mercy to the world, Jesus delays His coming, that sinners may have an opportunity to hear the warning and find in Him a shelter before the wrath of God shall be poured out. -- Ellen G. White, The Great Controversy, pp. 457-458.


Additional Commentary
The Seal of God
The Beast of Revelation 11:7


Zog Has-fallen
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6. The Court’s Final Verdict (Revelation 19-20)

Post by Zog Has-fallen » Fri Jun 27, 2014 5:30 pm

The Court’s final verdict (Revelation 19-20) is nearly finished. To be completed after later editing.

Zog Has-fallen
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7. The Reward Of Those Who Overcome (Revelation 21-22)

Post by Zog Has-fallen » Fri Jun 27, 2014 5:30 pm

This is the reward of those who overcome (Revelation 21-22). To be completed after later editing.

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