The Seven Trumpets
Lorraine Day, M.D.
“What is the theological significance of the seals and of the trumpets? The content of each series reveals that it is directed to different kinds of people. The seals center on the martyrs slain because of their witness to the word of God and the testimony of Jesus. . .(Rev 6:9-11). Their loud cry “How long. . . ?” indicates that Christian persecution had been going on for a long time.” (End-Time Prophecies of the Bible, LaRondelle pg 171) The seals teach that discipleship of Christ implies suffering for Christ (see Rev 1:9).
According to LaRondelle, the vision of the trumpets shows that heaven will respond to these prayers of the suffering saints by casting “fire” from the altar to the earth. This represents specific judgments that limit or incapacitate the world’s persecuting powers until the global judgments bring final destruction to the world as we know it.
The consensus appears to be that the seals and the trumpets are parallel, they are occurring at the same time, but the seals are a picture primarily of the suffering of the saints at the hands of the persecutors, whereas the trumpets reveal God’s judgment on those who have persecuted God’s people.
How should we interpret these Trumpets:
Should they be literally interpreted or Spiritually interpreted?
We know that Revelation is a book of symbols. Jesus is represented as a Lamb. Obviously that is a Spiritual interpretation, rather than a literal one. It may be that the trumpets are both literal AND spiritual, but we must certainly look for their Spiritual interpretation which will be hidden from many. The literal interpretation may be quite obvious and does not require spiritual discernment.
Let’s look again at 1 Cor 2:14: “Bur the natural man (the physical or soulish man) receives not the things of the Spirit of God; for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.”
This verse tells us that a non-Christian cannot understand Spiritual things. In addition, even a professing Christian who is not guided by God’s Spirit, who is not deeply studying His word, will NOT be able to understand Spiritual things, particularly a book as deep as Revelation. Therefore, if the interpretation of the trumpets is obvious, even to an unregenerate heart, then that cannot be its interpretation, that cannot be the ultimate information God desires to pass on to us.
The Introductory Vision: Rev 8:1-5
The seventh seal is opened and there was silence in heaven about the space of half an hour (7 days). If a day represents a year (360 days in prophecy) then 1 hr represents 1/24th of a day, which is calculated as 15 days (360 divided by 24). One-half hour then, is approximately 7 days.
Seven angels with Seven Trumpets appear out of the Seventh Seal.
Another angel 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.
“And the smoke of the incense which came with the prayers of the saints, ascended up before God out of the angel’s hands.
“And the angel took the censer, and filed it with fire of the altar, and cast it to the earth: and there were noises, and thunderings, and lightnings, and an earthquake.”
The main theme of this introductory vision to the trumpets is the assurance that Christ hears the prayer requests of His oppressed people. The incense represents the divine propitiation for our sins.
“In his final act the angel uses the censer no longer for intercession but for judgment; fire without incense. This indicates that the prayers of the saints (in Rev 6:9-11) will be answered by judgments on earth, followed by the appearance of the Judge of all the earth, in conjunction with a cosmic earthquake.” End-Time Prophecies of the Bible, by Hans LaRondelle.
Remember that the Seals and the Trumpets appear to be running pretty much parallel. The Seals depict largely what is happening to God’s people, whereas the Trumpets reveal what is happening to the enemies of God’s people.
The Trumpets are judgments against the earth, meant to turn the people to repentance and back to God. That is why they only involve one-third of the earth, rather than the whole earth as the Seven Last Plagues do.
“The first angel sounded,
“There followed hail and fire mingled with blood. . .
Hail and fire mingled with blood is a description commonly used in the old testament for God’s judgment on various peoples of the earth, a description of battles and wars: Ex 9:23,24-26; Isa 28:2,17 and 32:17-19
“And they were cast upon the earth
“And the third part of trees was burnt up,
These judgments are restrictive as they only involve a third part of the trees.
The term “trees” is often used to denote God’s people: Jer 11:16,17; Luke 13:6-9; Matt 21:18,19
Jesus cursed the fig tree (representing Israel) because it did not bear fruit when it “appeared” that it should. Israel did not believe in the Messiah even though they claimed to be God’s “Chosen People.”
And all green grass was burnt up.”
Ps 92:7; 102:4; 103:15; Prov 19:12; Isa 37:;27; Isa 40:6
This First Trumpet hearkens back to the 3rd day of Creation, AND the 7th Plague of Egypt (hail) Ex 9:18
“And the Second angel sounded, and as it were a great mountain burning with fire
A mountain is frequently used as a symbol of a nation: Isa 2:2,3; 11:9; 11:15, Dan 2:35, 44,45; Zach 4:7
Fire: War-like Isa 43:2; Isa 29:6; Isa 66:15
was cast into the sea:
sea = multitudes, people, languages, etc.
and the third part of the sea became blood;
A third of the peoples of the world became involved in wars
“And the third part of the creatures which were in the sea, and had life, died;
A third of the people on the earth died
and the third part of the ships were destroyed.”
Ships provide safety in the sea: Noah’s Ark, also see Gen 49:13; Prov 31:4; Isa 60:9
Ships may also pertain to people’s material possession (i.e. homes) or economic well-being.
This trumpet occurs in response to the cry of the martyred saints in Rev. 18 and the same cry of the saints in the Fifth Seal, Rev 6:9
This trumpet hearkens back to the 1st Exodus Plague AND the to the 5th Day of Creation (creation of the sea creatures).
And the Third Angel sounded,
And there fell a great star from heaven
False worker or false teacher: Jude 12,13; Rev 1:16,20; Rev 12:1; or Satan, Job 38:7
Satan promulgates his errors through human teachers. Apostasy in the Christian church: Matt 24:4,5,24; Acts 20:26-3l
Burning as it were a torch
The “illuminated” ones - False teachers
And it fell upon the third part of the rivers, and upon the fountains (springs) of waters
Restricted judgments on “waters” - people.
Rivers = people (2 Thess 2:7,8,4)
Fountains of Water = Spiritually thirsty: Isa 12:3; Prov 13:14; John 7:37; Jer 2:13
And the name of the star is called Wormwood
Wormwood is a symbol for idolatry: Deut 29:17,18; Jer 9:15
And the third part of the waters became wormwood
And many men died of the waters, because they were made bitter.
2 Thess 2:10-12
This 3rd Trumpet hearkens back to the 2nd and 3rd days of creation AND the First Plague
“And the Fourth Angel sounded
“And the third part of the sun was smitten,
“And the third part of the moon,
“And the third part of the stars;
“So as the third part of them was darkened,
“And the day had no light for a third part of it, and the night likewise.
The FOURTH TRUMPET strikes the heavenly bodies and “light”
The sun, moon and stars turn “dark” for a third of the time. A third of the light is affected means that there is a removal of some (a third part) of the TRUTH, but not all of it.
There is symbolic use of “darkness” in the Old Testament: Isa 45:7; Amos 5:20
Darkness is used as a metaphor for “disaster” and also for ignorance or blindness regarding truth: Isa 42:7; Ps 107:10,11; Isa 8:20,22; 60:2; 9:1,2 Mic 3:6,7; Matt 4:16, Luke 1:79; 2 Cor 4:4; Rom1:21; John 8:12
Idolatry is an expression of the “darkening” of men’s foolish hearts (Rom 1:21), of the perversion of the true knowledge of God, of the “blindness" of the unbelievers (Rom 2:19).
Jesus said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows Me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” John 8:12
The FOURTH TRUMPET hearkens back to the 1st and 4th days of Creation AND to the 9th plague of Exodus
AFTER THE FOURTH TRUMPET: Three “woes”
“And I beheld, and heard an angel flying through the midst of heaven, saying with a loud voice, Woe, woe, woe, to the inhabiters of the earth by reason of the remaining blasts of the trumpet of the three angels, which are about to sound!”
“With these woes or covenant curses God allows an increase of the demonic manifestation and darkness on the earth, but not without assuring His worshipers that no harm will come to them. They stand under His seal of approval and protection (Rev 9:4).” LaRondelle, pg 186
“And the fifth angel sounded
and I saw a star which had fallen from heaven unto the earth
We will see below that this is Satan, the Destroyer
and to him was given the key of the bottomless pit (abyss)
The “abyss” is what Satan made of the earth before God re-created it in Gen 1:1,2, and what Satan is going to make of this earth at the end.
and he opened the bottomless pit
and there arose a smoke out of the pit, as the smoke of a great furnace;
and the sun and the air were darkened by reason of the smoke of the pit;
Blackening of the sky by the smoke from the realm of demons. Heavy demonic oppression of the earth.
And there came out of the smoke locusts upon the earth
Locusts can cover the earth and devour it. This is what the New World Order Religious/Political power will do.
And unto them was given power as the scorpions of the earth have power
Scorpions have “power” by their ability to “hurt and injure” not because they are intelligent rulers. Jesus used snakes and scorpions as metaphors for demons.
And it was commanded them that they should not hurt the grass of the earth, neither any green thing, neither any tree
But only those men which have not the seal of God in their foreheads
This suggests that the “grass”, “green things” and “trees” are, indeed God’s people.
The only ones tortured are those who have received the Mark of the Beast, not those who have the seal of God.
Those without Christ will receive the poisonous sting of deadly lies causing an unbearable mental agony and suicidal anguish (Rev 9:5,6).
The Humanist Manifesto says “No deity will save us; we must save ourselves.” In this basic lie are rooted all mental agonies and suicidal desires.
And to them it was given that the locusts should not kill them but that they should be tormented 5 months
They torture but do not kill - - yet!
And their torment was as the torment of a scorpion, when he striketh a man
The scorpion’s sting is in his tail, suggesting extreme deception. The evil that they do from behind, like the deception, which means they act by the power of the lie. Satan’s major tools of operation indeed are lies, deception and persecution (Matt 24; 2 Thess 2)
And in those days shall men seek death, and shall not find it; and shall desire to die, and death shall flee from them
And the shapes of the locusts were like unto horses prepared unto battle
A war - the ”Great Controversy” between Christ and Satan for men’s hearts.
And on their heads were as it were crowns like gold
This war will be conducted by the kings of the earth. They will be victorious, at least for a time.
And their faces were the faces of men
These are human beings being used by demonic forces
And they had hair as the hair of women
This may be that they have a very deceptively pleasant and legitimate appearance: Song of Solomon: 7:5; 4:1; 6:5 A woman’s hair is her crowning glory.
And their teeth were as the teeth of lions
They teach soul-destroying philosophies and people lose all hope and meaning of life.
And they had breastplates as it were breastplates of iron
The perpetrators of the torture are protected from danger
And the sound of their wings was as the sound of chariots of many horses running to battle
And they had tails like unto scorpions and there were stings in their tails
And their authority was to hurt men five months
They severely torture, but do not kill.
And they had a king over them, which is the angel of the bottomless pit whose name in the Hebrew tongue is Abaddon (Destruction) but in the Greek tongue hath his name Apollyon (Destroyer).
This is obviously, Satan. Note that he is called the “Destroyer” because he is “destroying” the earth, he is “de-Creating” the earth. Over a period of 6,000 years, Satan has been reversing the 6 days of God’s Creation. This is its final culmination.
This FIFTH TRUMPET hearkens back to the 6th Day of Creation and the 8th plague of the Exodus.
“One woe is past; and behold, there come two woes more hereafter.” Rev 9:12
“And the sixth angel sounded, and I heard a voice from the four horns of the golden altar which is before God,
The symbol of “horns” represents power and strength. “Four” symbolizes ALL, such as in the phrase “four corners of the earth.” “The golden altar which is before God”, shows us that God is in control of EVERYTHING and that everything that happens is from Him, including the judgments on the earth.
Saying to the sixth angel which had the trumpet, Release the four angels which are bound at the great river Euphrates
The river Euphrates represents the great multitudes that support the Babylonian New World Order power that is controlling the earth. Their power has been restricted by God up until now, but their power to do evil has been loosed by the angels.
However, this is Satan’s hour to show his vindictive power over those who yield to his control.
And the four angels were loosed, which were made ready for the hour, and day, and month, and year, that they should be killing a third of mankind.
Obviously the plan to kill a third of mankind will have a very specific timetable. We already know of the plans of the New World Order for depopulation of the earth. Their objective is ultimately to eliminate nearly all of the 6 billion people now on earth. Their goal is for only 500 million people to remain on the earth.
Also we understand that the demonic deceptions will be so great, that most of the world’s population will also be spiritually dead.
And the number of the troops of cavalry was two hundred millions -- I heard their number.
Clearly, with all the world’s resources at their command, the New World Order will have almost an unlimited ability to carry out their plans.
This shows how the symbolic “144,000” are outnumbered.
And thus I perceived the horses in the vision, and those sitting on them having fiery red breastplates and amethystine and sulphurous (brimstone)
Horses represent battle (the Great Controversy - Armageddon - the battle between Christ and Satan) and the fiery red breastplates of sulphur represent Satan’s forces.
And the heads of the horses are as the heads of lions
The lion represents Babylon which is the head of the terrible beast of Rev 13.
And out of their mouths is issuing fire and fumes and sulphur.
By these calamities were killed a third of mankind; by the fire and fumes and the sulphur which is issuing out of their mouths.
The fire, fumes and sulphur represent demonic power which issues out of their “mouths” which could be demonically inspired despotic decrees.
For the license (the power) of the horses is in their mouths and in their tails;
Power or “license” in the tail is symbolic of deception which comes out of their mouths.
For their tails are like serpents, having heads, and with them they are injuring.
Their tails are like serpents, Satan, the author of deception uses his most intelligent cunning to deceive the whole earth.
And the rest of mankind, who were not killed in these calamites, repent not of the acts of their hands
These calamities are obviously meant to bring about repentance, but the wicked do not repent.
--that they will not be worshiping the demons and idols of gold and silver and copper and stone and wood, which are neither able to be observing nor to be hearing nor to be walking
The people of the world continue to worship their idols of fame, riches, pleasure, power and iniquity.
--and they repent not of their murders, nor of their enchantments (sorceries), nor of their prostitution, nor of their thefts.
This is a perfect list of the activities encouraged by the New World Order: murder, consorting with demons, including spiritualism (astrology, Harry Potter, psychics, hypnosis, paranormal phenomena, New Age meditation, drugs: both drug medications and illegal drugs - both of which affect the mind), whoring after the gods of Baal and Molech including fame, money, power, vanity, pride, selfishness which includes the sacrificing of children by abortion, sacrificing lives through conventional medical treatments, and stealing not only money, but the very minds and lives of the people.
These are the first Six Trumpets. There is an interlude before the sounding of the Seventh Trumpet in Rev. 11:15 which is considered to be the Third Woe (Rev 11:14) and introduces the Seven Last Plagues.
The Interlude Vision of Revelation 10
Read Rev 10:1,2
The Mighty angel is portrayed as the returning Messiah. “Robed in a cloud, with a rainbow above His head; His face was like the sun, and His legs like fiery pillars.”
Verse 4: John was told to seal up those things which the seven thunders uttered, and write them not. . . (verse 6) that there should be no more delay.”
Apparently the hearts of all are settled. Everyone has made up his mind about whose side he is on, God’s or Satan’s, so there is no need for any “more time”, no need for any delay.
Jesus is standing upon the sea and the earth and lifts His hand to heaven (Verse 5) showing that His authority is over the entire universe.
Verse 6 reminds us that God is the Creator of the heavens, the earth, the sea and everything therein, which is the crux of the whole issue: who will you worship? The Creator of the Universe - on His Holy Sabbath Day? Or will you worship what has been created - the venerable Sun? Will you worship God? Or will you worship nature: the sun, the earth, man, the beasts or even the insects, as is done in pagan cultures?
Verse 7: In the days of the voice of the Seventh Angel . . . the mystery of God should be finished (accomplished). The Seventh Angel introduces the Seven Last Plagues. But what is the “mystery of God?”
In Verse 8, John is asked to take the little book which is open in the “hand of the angel” (Christ) and to “eat it up; and it shall make thy belly bitter, but it shall be in thy mouth sweet as honey.”
Paul explains that “the mystery of Christ” in the apostolic gospel discloses that “the Gentiles” (which means unbelievers) are heirs together with Israel (which means the believers), members together of one body, and sharers together in the promise in Christ Jesus” (Eph 3:6). This was the “mystery hidden for long ages past, but now revealed and made known through the prophetic writings by the command of the eternal God, so that all nations might believe and obey Him” (Rom 16:25,26).
The “Mystery of God” is the message that Christ died for EVERYONE and He is going to save EVERYONE, both believers and later those who are now unbelievers, who will ALL become believers.
This is Universal Restoration. God will restore everyone and reconcile them ALL to Himself.
It is THIS message that is sweet as honey in our mouth, but bitter in our belly because we will be severely persecuted and even killed for spreading this fabulous message about God. And our most vicious persecutors will be Christians who virtually ALL hate the fact that Christ will eventually save EVERYONE!
Verse 11: We are told by Christ that we must take THIS message (prophesy “AGAIN”), the message of Universal Restoration, to “many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings” which includes the whole earth.
Why does Christ say, “prophesy AGAIN”? Because the first time the gospel was taken to the world in this present generation, it was the WRONG gospel. It was the gospel of a “killer God”, a God who will destroy forever those who presently don’t worship Him, or so the Organized Churches believe.
But God does NOT kill!
Jesus said, “I came NOT to destroy men’s lives but to SAVE THEM!”
“And I, If I be lifted up from the earth (on the Cross) WILL draw ALL to Me!”
© Lorraine Day, M.D. 2006. All Rights Reserved.
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