I have felt led to say something for several weeks now, so here goes.
Father, I ask, in the name of your Son Jesus Christ, that these words find their way into the hands of those that you have intended, and that they carry the weight and power that you intended them too.
I ask Father that you embed these words, no matter how foolish I think they sound, into the hearts and minds of those that will come to know Jesus Christ and that they be willing to share your passion whether it be newly found or like a flickering candle has burned within them for some time now. Cause your life to erupt inside of those who find you and give them the courage to face what ever comes their way.
I also pray for those that will not make it in the rapture, and must prove their love for God by giving their lives. Give them a supernatural strength that they did not think was in them. And Father, above all, because your word will not go void or lose its strength, I ask that no matter what comes their way during these dark days ahead, that they are not only filled with courage, but shine as testimonies to the living God. In the mighty and powerful name of Jesus Christ I ask these things. Amen.
Take the next few paragraphs as you wish but I am speaking wisdom as a prophet of God.
Use faith filled words for God's word still works and will still the avenger as the Holy Spirit of God empowers you to act boldly. Even today, but especially in the future, this is not a time to listen to religious people; they are among you, trying to lead you to destruction, but here is the key, religious people will crumble under pressure and fall to the mark of the beast. (I strongly suspect that this mark will come in the form of some sort of acceptance of Allah and Mohammed as his prophet, much like the Jews had to do under Hitler's regime, and you will be required to wear something that shows your subservience.)
Do not give your allegiance to anyone but God, for in so doing you will cut yourselves off from God's mercy forever. Think of it this way. You are following your leader to his reward, in this case Satan, eternal punishment (Yes, God asked us to follow him, and his path takes us to a world without sin, Satan, and it is filled with God's presence and love). Stand your ground, in your allegiance to God, no matter what. It is going to be tough but this is where you have to lean heavily on the Holy Spirit.
If you still have access to a bible read about the Holy Spirit and how he interacts with and through people. The book of Acts is filled with examples of this. Some are not so direct and others are very implicit. If the rapture has not come then I strongly suggest that you live a life filled with the Holy Spirit now.
Acts 6:5-8 KJV …. Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Ghost, and Philip, …. (7) And the word of God increased; and the number of the disciples multiplied …..; and a great company of the priests were obedient to the faith. (8) And Stephen, full of faith and power, did great wonders and miracles among the people. Acts 6:9-15 KJV Then there arose certain of the synagogue. (religious people – they do not believe in the power of God.) They started arguing with Stephen. Acts 6:10,11 CEV But they were no match for Stephen, who spoke with the great wisdom that the Spirit gave him. So they talked some men into saying, "We heard Stephen say terrible things against Moses and God!" Acts 6:12-15 CEV They turned the people and their leaders and the teachers of the Law of Moses against Stephen. Then they all grabbed Stephen and dragged him in front of the council. (13) Some men agreed to tell lies about Stephen, and they said, "This man keeps on saying terrible things about this holy temple and the Law of Moses. (14) We have heard him claim that Jesus from Nazareth will destroy this place and change the customs that Moses gave us." (15) Then all the council members stared at Stephen. They saw that his face looked like the face of an angel.
Stephen was not miraculously pulled out of that uncomfortable situation but he had a calm assurance settle over him that was not of this world, and they saw it. This is exactly what I am talking about. Stephen was killed (murdered at Saul's bequest) and Saul, the notable Jew, stood there as they did it. God got Saul's attention because of what he saw in Stephen, and Saul became the Apostle Paul and carried the good news about this life changing man, Jesus Christ, to the Greeks.
It was not just a bad dream; you are still here. Now what?
Just because you are still be here after the rapture does not mean that God rejected you. Let's be honest, you rejected him, but hopefully by now you have seen his mighty hand and understand how mislead you were.
Know this, you have not been rejected. God loves you, he always has. He proved his love long ago by sending Jesus his only Son, so that you could have a glorious life with the Father. Unfortunately you rejected him during the time of grace, but his arms are still open, just as they always have been, to accept you into his love and mercy when you come. Merely call on his name. The thief on the cross beside Jesus simply asked to be received into the kingdom; God will do the same for you if you ask him.
Back to the bible study, and the Seventh seal
Revelation 8:1 KJV And when he had opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven about the space of half an hour.
When attempting to find out what the background depth and meanings of what we read we demonstrate intelligence and insight, but we can also be looking for things that do not exist. When you look up the word silence in the Greek it means just that.
Why should there be anything odd about this passage? Primarily because everything I have ever understood about heaven tells me that it is filled with sounds of praise. Every testimony that I have ever read where the person came back from the dead after seeing heaven, said that everything had beautiful sounds associated with it. The silence then, gives this verse the feeling of impact. Perhaps all the residents of heaven are aghast at what is about to happen, or they are in awe of the how the glory and majesty of the God that the earth mocked, is about to show up.
Revelation 8:2 KJV And I saw the seven Angels which stood before God; and to them were given seven trumpets.
As I listened recently to a radio pastor, he spoke about the numbers that show up all over the bible, but especially in Revelation. Some are literal and some are analogies, symbolic of something else, such as completion or purity. I suspect it is safe to say that there are seven literal angels that will carry out this task.
If you have followed me in my trek through Revelation you have noticed trumpet blasts on several occasions. Since this was, in a sense, written to Jewish believers, who maintained and even found their Jewishness to be even richer for they had found the Messiah that they sought for and understood with a clarity what was meant by “a trumpet blast”. It is a shofar, and has a very distinct sound.
Begin to pay close attention
Revelation 8:3-5 KJV And another angel came and stood at the altar, having a golden censer; and there was given unto him much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne. (4) And the smoke of the incense, which came with the prayers of the saints, ascended up before God out of the angel's hand. (5) And the angel took the censer, and filled it with fire of the altar, and cast it into the earth: and there were voices, and thunderings, and lightnings, and an earthquake.
- “....another angel came and stood at the altar, having a golden censer; and there was given unto him much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne.”Consider what this says. This angel is offering up incense, an extremely symbolic act, but the angel is mingling that incense with the prayers of the Saints.Numbers 16:47 KJV..... and he put on incense, and made an atonement for the people.Exodus 30:7-8 KJV And Aaron shall burn thereon sweet incense every morning: when he dresseth the lamps, he shall burn incense upon it. (8) And when Aaron lighteth the lamps at even, he shall burn incense upon it, a perpetual incense before the LORD throughout your generations.
- A second thing that you need to pay attention to is where these Saints are. the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne.” They are upon the golden altar.If God is in control, and he is, then these “Saints” found upon the golden altar have been offered up to God as a sacrifice. Some might see this in a negative light; I do not. God, in offering them up, has made them like the lambs of the old covenant, the covenant done away with by the New one, but that was the time of grace and ended with the rapture.Literally man, but particularly one man, the false prophet, has offered them up unwittingly, back to God. Islam awaits a prophet they call Jesus Christ also. The problem is that their Jesus is not the son of God but merely a good prophet. According to Islam, he did not die on a cross for your sins (according to Islam only Allah can grant such things and there is no guarantee of that outside of martyrdom in the name of Jihad), for Allah rescued him and he died a natural death.This Islamic Jesus is understood to be a Jewish convert to Islam, and he is of the lineage of Aaron. That entitles him to be a high priest and serve as such in the temple. (He may already be functioning in that capacity already. Do not be so shocked at that idea for scripture tells us that the dragon – Satan – gives the beast his power.)Revelation 13:2 KJV And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion: and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority.
- These “Saints” that John sees are not the church, they are the martyred through great tribulation. I feel like I found this concept on my own, long ago, but only recently heard other radio pastors, that I admire, saying the same thing. If we go on the principal that scripture interprets scripture and follow the context, then it leads us back to Revelation and God calls those martyred for the name of Jesus and their testimony, Saints. The church is called the church and the body of Christ, and is in Christ. Christ is seated next to the Father and has already spent his time upon the altar, offered up by the priesthood of his day. Do not get them confused.
In response to the prayers of the Saints.
Revelation 8:4-5 LITV And the smoke of the incenses went up with the prayers of the saints out of the hand of the angel before God. (5) And the angel has taken the censer, and has filled it from the fire of the altar, and cast it into the earth; and sounds and thunders and lightnings and earthquakes occurred.
Stop! - What did the Saints, previously martyred, say to God?
Revelation 6:10 NIV They called out in a loud voice, "How long, Sovereign Lord, holy and true, until you judge the inhabitants of the earth and avenge our blood?"
If there is a point to this it is that there is a feel of finality in their conversation. Another aspect that demonstrates the finality of their numbers is that God himself introduces them to John as those who have come out of Great Tribulation. This is the end of them, just do not ask me to give you specific time frames.
Revelation 6:11 NIV Then each of them was given a white robe, and they were told to wait a little longer, until the full number of their fellow servants, their brothers and sisters, were killed just as they had been.
The words to note here in verses four and five are “and”. Whether it is following or in response to, the actions that begin to happen seem to clearly be in response to their prayers. I threw in Revelation 6:10 because they asked God how long until he avenges their blood. It is safe, in my opinion, to make the connection between their request of God and what occurs immediately after the angel offers up the incense mixed with prayers.
- The angel filled the censer with fire and cast it into the earth. - This may be analoguous, but to what I am not sure. There will be plenty of firey objects thrown into the earth in the near future, and you will see some immediate impacts. One commentary indicates that this action shows us the future things to come.
- There were voices – When you explore the Greek word translated as voices you find the word phōnē which means a sound or a tone of an inanimate thing. I suppose this might make more sense for in an orchestra the musical instruments are called voices.
- and thunderings – Obviously more noise but of a different nature. Thunder has a completely different impact when it booms over your head. You know it means business and there is the potential that somebody just got hurt.
- and lightnings – If you read the story of Samuel the prophet, he is old and in his last days. Israel once again is rejecting God and the enemy, the Philistines, is attacking. The elders ask Samuel to pray to God for help. So God responds with earthquakes and lightning upon the Philistines.Having heard of people surviving a lightning strike I decided to gain some knowledge about lightning. The spark can reach over five miles (eight kilometers) in length, raise the temperature of the air by as much as 50,000 degrees Fahrenheit (27,700 degrees Celsius), and contain a hundred million electrical volts. (3,696 deaths were recorded in the U.S. between 1959 and 2003) or cause cardiac arrest. Injuries range from severe burns and permanent brain damage to memory loss and personality change. About 10 percent of lightning-stroke victims are killed, and 70 percent suffer serious long-term effects. People who are close to a blast incident, such as bomb disposal technicians, soldiers wearing body armor, deminers or individuals wearing little to no protection, there are four types of blast effects on the human body: overpressure (shock), fragmentation, impact and heat. Overpressure refers to the sudden and drastic rise in ambient pressure that can damage the internal organs, possibly leading to permanent damage or death. Fragmentation includes the shrapnel described above but can also include sand, debris and vegetation from the area surrounding the blast source. This is very common in anti-personnel mine blasts. The projection of materials poses a potentially lethal threat caused by cuts in soft tissues, as well as infections, and injuries to the internal organs. When the overpressure wave impacts the body it can induce violent levels of blast-induced acceleration. Resulting injuries range from minor to unsurvivable. Immediately following this initial acceleration, deceleration injuries can occur when a person impacts directly against a rigid surface or obstacle after being set in motion by the force of the blast. Finally, injury and fatality can result from the explosive fireball as well as incendiary agents projected onto the body. (Excerpted from Wikipedia)
- and an earthquake – Revelation is filled with earthquakes. Some would seem violent enough to move land masses. An obvious factor is the earth splitting open. This was one of the aspects when God answered Samuel's prayer. So the Philistines had all these things thrown at them.
And the trumpets have not even sounded yet.
The seven angels prepared themselves to sound.
Revelation 8:6-7 KJV And the seven angels which had the seven trumpets prepared themselves to sound. (7) The first angel sounded, and there followed hail and fire mingled with blood, and they were cast upon the earth: and the third part of trees was burnt up, and all green grass was burnt up.
The first angel sounded, and there followed:
- hail and fire mingled with blood
The effect is that one-third of the trees were burned up and all the green grass.
The Greek word for green is chloros. It is the word that we derive chlorophyll and gives plant life its green color. But the word for grass is chortos and means something a little broader in spectrum. A primary word; a “court” or “garden”, that is, (by implication of pasture) growing crops or vegetation. (Strong's) Now we are not just talking about your yard but crops. So immediately food production is destroyed.
It's bad enough to have hail coming down because of its destructive properties. The worst I have been in was about the size of marbles. I thought I was going to lose my windshield, but when we start talking about hail the size of baseballs or bigger, now we are talking the loss of life should you get hit in the head. God takes this one freakish step further by throwing in blood and fire.
Revelation 8:8-9 KJV And the second angel sounded, and as it were a great mountain burning with fire was cast into the sea: and the third part of the sea became blood; (9) And the third part of the creatures which were in the sea, and had life, died; and the third part of the ships were destroyed.
The second angel sounded
- the third part of the sea became blood
- the third part of the creatures which were in the sea, and had life, died
- and the third part of the ships were destroyed.
“and as it were a great mountain burning with fire was cast into the sea:”
How is all this possible in one shot. Of course nothing is impossible with God, but I think we are missing something. Again, the food supply is destroyed, and one-third of the ships are destroyed. A logical approach says: if you strike say the Pacific Ocean you would impact the western seaboard of both the US and South America, Australia, Japan, Russia, and all the Island nations. Potentially affecting a third of all the waters, but I do not think so. The US alone has its navy spread adequately around the globe and I suspect that God is trying to make a global impact.
Consider that at this point in time there has already been a massive earthquake that has flattened mountains and the islands have disappeared.
Therefore the concept of unified land mass and plate shifts take on much more importance.
Revelation 8:10-11 KJV And the third angel sounded, and there fell a great star from heaven, burning as it were a lamp, and it fell upon the third part of the rivers, and upon the fountains of waters; (11) And the name of the star is called Wormwood: and the third part of the waters became wormwood; and many men died of the waters, because they were made bitter.
The third angel sounded
“..a great star, blazing like a torch, fell from the sky on:..”
- A third of the rivers
- upon the fountain of waters (the NIV puts it this way, “and on the springs of water--”)
- Many men died because of the waters
How could one object take out not only a third of the rivers but an originating water source that impacts one-third of the earth's population, unless: we were one contiguous land mass, or this thing is massive beyond comprehension. If size is the case, the effects of a strike of this size will be catastrophic, changing the global climate. A consideration that is worthy and forces us to think outside the box, is that God does not physically have to strike a specific target to do what he wishes to do. Clearly this object will have its effect.
The fourth angel sounded
Revelation 8:12 NIV The fourth angel sounded his trumpet, and a third of the sun was struck, a third of the moon, and a third of the stars, so that a third of them turned dark. A third of the day was without light, and also a third of the night.
- A third of the sun turned dark
- A third of the moon turned dark
- A third of the stars turned dark
- A third of the day was without light, and also a third of the night.
A short article on About.com gave me a little insight.
“"The sun is a mass of incandescent gas, a gigantic nuclear furnace, where hydrogen is built into helium at a temperature of millions of degrees." Have you ever wondered what else is in the sun besides hydrogen and helium? I hunted up a table (source: NASA - Goddard Space Flight Center) listing the sun's elemental composition, which we know from analysis of its spectral signature. I'm sure you're not surprised that hydrogen is the most abundant element. The sun is constantly fusing hydrogen into helium, but don't expect the ratio of hydrogen to helium to change anytime soon. The sun is 4.5 billion years old and has converted about half of the hydrogen in its core into helium. It still has about 5 billion years before the hydrogen runs out. “ Chemical Composition of the Sun By Anne Marie Helmenstine, Ph.D., About.com GuideJune 15, 2010
It could only be God that turns off a third of the fireball that has the potential to continue burning for 5 billion years. The moon on the other hand is a reflective object so the logic becomes even cloudier, and how does one shut down a third of the stars. Perhaps this is the act of a black hole induced phenomenon. Again, it is so contrary to logical possibilities that it has to be God.
What would be the purpose? One thing comes to mind; how many years has man mocked and ignored the creator, calling him anything but Jehovah, and denying his power. Now you will understand what power is.
As bad as any of this may sound it gets worse.
Revelation 8:13 NIV As I watched, I heard an eagle that was flying in midair call out in a loud voice: "Woe! Woe! Woe to the inhabitants of the earth, because of the trumpet blasts about to be sounded by the other three angels!"
I wonder how there could be anyone left on earth and yet even though no one turns their heart toward God that seems to be one of the purposes for all this wrath. As you read on Revelation you will the phrase, “those whose names are not written in the book of life.” It is a done deal, even now, as you read this, God has already had his eye upon you. You might as well throw yourself at his feet, for he is relentless.
The fact that the eagle cries out three times is indicative of three more trumpet blasts, along with their wrath and judgment, are yet to come.