Author’s Note: Most are afraid of the Book of Revelation. Christians are often easily frightened by the misconceptions of “Armageddon,” fabrications, or Hollywood’s portrayal of merely bad theology. Furthermore, most who attempt to read the book are easily confused. Therefore, More Than Judas will be spending the next several weeks analyzing the Book of Revelation.
Please understand this study will not attempt to expound on every minute detail in Revelation. 2 Minutes With God would quickly escalate into 2 Hours With God. However, this analysis will consider the critical aspects of each chapter, as well as their underlining purposes and application of the Scriptures. Each study will contain five critical points and one main idea. Because the text is so complicated, this will streamline the material in a “layman” reader friendly format.
For those who would like to further research this book, I suggest Warren W. Wiersbe’s, Be Victorious Study Guide on Revelation, or John MacArthur’s, Revelation-The Christian’s Ultimate Victory. Outside of scholarly publications, both accounts have been very influential to me in understanding such a difficult text.
Lastly, this daily devotional will be written for the common man- not the theologian. I seldom ever debate Eschatological perspectives. Nor do I ever plan to. I know brilliant biblical scholars on all sides that can make valid arguments for explaining their positions regarding Revelation. The most important task at hand is glorifying Jesus Christ- not to win the arguments amongst faithful Christians.
Nevertheless, for the case of this MTJ Study, everything will be considered through a Progressive Dispensationalist-Premillennial Viewpoint, a Pretribulation point of view concerning the Rapture, as well as a literal interpretation, which allows for symbolism of Scripture and Christ’s Second Coming. Please feel free to post any specific questions concerning the text in the Facebook thread.
Discussions regarding particular theological inquiries or philosophies can be had there.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Verses: “8 The second angel sounded his trumpet, and something like a huge mountain, all ablaze, was thrown into the sea. A third of the sea turned into blood, 9 a third of the living creatures in the sea died, and a third of the ships were destroyed.” Revelation 8: 8-9
Here’s the main idea of the passage: “Seven angels blow seven trumpets. The trumpets set in motion seven judgments leading up to the Second Coming. The trumpets form the second cycle out of several that depict God’s rule over history from various angles…Like the trumpets used in the battle of Jericho (Josh. 6), these trumpets lead up to the fall of the worldly city (11:8, 11:13), and in the seventh trumpet the complete victory of God arrives. The trumpet plagues are reminiscent of the plagues on Egypt, signifying God’s judgments on idolatrous power. The seven seals began with announcements of riders commissioned to bring calamities (6:1–8). The seven trumpets, by contrast, contain descriptions of the calamities themselves. The intensity of judgment has increased. Yet still some things are spared: most of the trumpet plagues fall on a third of the people or the land, not on all; the locust plague of 9:1–12 is over after five months; some people survive the collapse of the city in 11:13. By contrast, the later judgments with the bowls (15:1–16:21) are thoroughly devastating.” (R.C. Sproul’s Reformation Study Bible Commentary)
Here are the five points of the passage:
- But first a quick review: “The first trumpet will target the Earth. The second blast will affect one-third of the sea. This enormous devastation strikes both life in the sea’s depths and ships on its surface. John witnessed ‘something like a great mountain’ engulfed in flames and cast into the sea. The image of water turning to ‘blood’ recalls the divine judgment of God through Moses that is described in Exodus 7:17-19. Whether this is literal blood or a description of massive pollution as a result of the catastrophe, we cannot be sure. It may be that the ‘mountain’ envisioned by John describes an asteroid that will strike the ocean. The tsunami caused by this kind of impact would inflict death and destruction on the scale described in Revelation 8:9. The impact on human life would be inestimable. Those who depend on ocean life for food would suffer hunger and hardship on an unprecedented scale. The destruction of seafaring vessels would cause disruption in global trade as well as a crisis of security when the navies of world powers are significantly reduced.” (Chuck Swindoll Commentary)
- 8- Most theologians suggest a meteor or asteroid crashing into the sea. This would create a massive tidal wave, destroying ships and much of the sea.
- 8- “…the sea became blood…This may refer to an event known as red tides, caused by billions of micro-organisms poisoning the water- in this case the result of the meteor’s collision. Or it may be actual blood, a clear act of eschatological judgement.” (John MacArthur Study Bible)
- As a consequence of this upheaval one-third of the sea creatures died, and one-third of the ships were destroyed. “The affect and destruction will be greater than that of an atomic bomb!” (John Brown Commentary)
- “The limitation to one-third leaves room for more terrible destruction to come, whether in connection with the last three trumpets or the later visions. Still, one-third is more than one-fourth. Eugene Boring (1989:135) notes that ‘in the first cycle, one-fourth of the earth’s inhabitants were struck (6:8); in this cycle the scale goes up to one-third,’ adding wisely, ‘to inquire whether this is a third of the original whole, or a third of what remained after one-fourth had been struck would be a wrong question; John works with the imagination, not calculators.’” (The IVP New Testament Commentary Series)
How is this applicable to the 21st Century?
There is no doubt the intensity of these judgments is ever increasing. But why is this so? How can God not only judge someone, much less send a person to Hell? Quite candidly, God hates sin that much. Moreover, as mentioned prior, God’s holiness will never be compromised. In essence, these judgments are a response to our sinful and fallen world. Consider this analogy commonly used by Christians: the Father reigns upon His throne- righteous and holy. Mankind is drowning in sin. Every single person is depraved by nature-flesh gravitates toward sin. Unequivocally, there is a gap between us and the Lord. Furthermore, there is nothing we can humanly do to close the fissure. This is why Jesus Christ came. He is the answer. Jesus is the One who bridges the gap- He is the propitiation for our sins.
“For God so loved the world that He gave His One and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16
“But if anybody does sin, we have an advocate with the Father- Jesus Christ, the Righteous One. He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the world.” 1 John 2: 1-2
Quote: “To the praying soul there becomes possible the love that, like a celestial flood, drowns out evil tempers and hateful dispositions, and introduces us to a new world of gentle and generous frames. To the praying soul there becomes possible and increasingly real the holiness which is personal conformity to an unseen Divine image and ideal, and the innermost secret of a heavenly bliss.” R. A. Torrey
Additional Readings: Revelation 8
Prayer: Father God, forgive me of my sinful nature. Have mercy on me Lord. Thank you for giving Your Son to die on the Cross for me. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.