THE PLAGUES OF REVELATION
Revelation Plagues on Freedom from Delusion
This paper contains all the plagues, descriptions of slaughters, and various so-called supernatural occurrences within the book of the Revelation. At one time I adhered to the “basically literal-tribulation” viewpoint highlighting an antichrist-beast world ruler invoking a literal “number of the beast” placed on the forehead or right arm to enforce a privilege or lack of to buy or sell. I have presently concluded the (at one time prophecy) majority of Revelation is a prophetic outline of the history and events of the church developments and failings since the beginning of the accepted church within the Roman Empire and later Europe and Constantinople. The primary point of this article is to hopefully reveal the irrational view of a literal interpretation.
(6:2) The white horse rider goes forth to conquer although the identity of the rider’s quarry is unknown. (6:4) The red horse rider causes peace to be taken away with people killing one another. (6:5-6) The black horse rider creates famine or a lack of edible food.
(6:8) The pale horse rider kills one-fourth (or the world?) with swords, hunger or famine, general death, and beasts.
The wording of “swords” must be symbolic, if used for the future, since swords are not used as an instrument of war any longer although they were used during the middle ages. The beasts could perhaps refer to wild animals of some type.
The fifth seal reveals souls under the altar of God who had been killed due to their testimony of God.
If all Christians have been “raptured” prior to the beginning of the Revelation then where does this group or souls, testifying of God, come from?
(6:12) The sixth seal produces a great earthquake. Also the sun becomes black, the moon appears as blood, the stars of heaven fall to the earth (perhaps meteorites), heaven departs as a scroll, every mountain and island are moved with people hiding in the rocks of the mountains because the great day of His wrath has come.
A literal understanding of the sixth seal would present an earth shattering catastrophe. If literal, the signs in the heavens: sun, moon, stars and the sky, would portend an invasion of the solar system by perhaps the so-called planet X. The earthquake moves every mountain and island. If this is worldwide then perhaps the entire crust of the earth spins the opposite direction of the inner earth or mantle. Everything would surely be destroyed. Perhaps the destruction of Mystery Babylon (chapter 17 and 19) and the warring incursions of the expected Beast/antichrist (chapter 13 and various parts of Daniel) should be placed within the first four seals. However, that would damage the so-called 7 years of Daniel’s 70th week as prescribed by Scofield .
The seventh seal releases the seven angels with trumpets but first a prequel to the trumpets consisting of (8:5) fire flung to the earth accompanied with voices, thunderings, lightnings, and an earthquake.
After the massive earthquake during the sixth seal what could be left to destroy with another earthquake?
8:7 The first trumpet elicits hail and fire mixed with blood. One third of all trees and all green grass are burned up.
It is not clear if the hail and fire with blood are two separate events or they both occur simultaneously. Hail and fire together could be meteorites. The origin of the blood is uncertain. Regardless, a literal view would mark the complete disappearance of green grass which would eliminate all grass eating animals if there are any still living after the aforementioned earthquakes.
8:8-9 The second trumpet generates a great mountain burning with fire which crashes into the sea with one-third of the sea becoming blood. One-third of sea creatures die and one-third of ships are destroyed.
It could be assumed the burning mountain causes a third of the sea to become blood which possibly results in a third of dead sea life and also causes a third of ships to be destroyed. The origin of the mountain is unknown but since it is describes as a “mountain” it must come somewhere from the earth if literal.
8:10-11 The third trumpet portrays a burning star from heaven called Wormwood falls upon one-third of the rivers and water fountains and turned them bitter as wormwood.
Another burning mass falls from the sky. It is described as a star from heaven. It would not be practical to think an actual star falls to earth so this mass, in a literal sense, could possibly be a large space rock, a meteorite, or an asteroid. This burning star affects the rivers and drinkable water, but oddly, only one-third of them. The Biblical definition of “wormwood” is a type of opioid which is extremely bitter if not hallucinogenic..
8:12 The fourth trumpet darkens one-third of the sun. Also one-third of the moon, and one-third of the stars are darkened as well. Which results in no light for one-third of the day and night.
The script does not say if the sun is darkened for one-third of the daylight hours or if the luminosity of the sun if decreased. It could be that thick clouds or smoke decrease the intensity of the emitted light but this would not account for the complete absence of light for one-third of the day.
9:1-11 With the sounding of the fifth trumpet, the bottomless pit is opened. Dark smoke from the pit darkens the sun and the air. Powerful locusts appear out of the smoke and the locusts are not allowed to hurt any green plant. They could torment any person without the seal of God on their foreheads for five months with the sting of a scorpion. The locusts appear as battle ready horses. Each had a crown of gold, a face like a man, the hair of a woman, and teeth as lions. They also had breastplates of iron, wings that imitate the sound of running horses, and their stinger is in their tail. Their king was/is the angel of the bottomless pit named Abaddon in Hebrew and Apollyon in Greek.
This scripture appears to indicate the entry way to the bottomless pit is located on the surface of the earth somewhere. If the pit is actually bottomless then the so-called non-existent bottom could be a black hole. The opening of the pit releases a stream of locusts that are not allowed to harm green plants. However, all green plants were destroyed or eliminated with the sound of the first trumpet.
The locusts are allowed to torment or sting as a scorpion, anyone without the seal of God on their forehead for a period of five months. The locusts have a bizarre appearance: gold crown, male face, female hair, teeth as lions, which sounds almost demonic. Coming from the bottomless pit, perhaps they are demonic.
Although not included in the above description, scripture states that no one repented. I would think the stone faces on Mt. Rushmore would repent after enduring this attack.
9:13 The sixth trumpet unleashes four angels bound at the Euphrates. These angels (or their army mentioned next) will slay one-third of the inhabitants (the earth?) Their army consists of two million horsemen and they kill one-third of men (actual wording) with fire, smoke, and brimstone coming from their mouths. Their tails were like serpents with multiple heads.
The four Euphrates bound angels appear to muster an army of two million horsemen. Armies are not mounted on horses in modern times so this must be symbolic of another object that is perhaps motorized. If symbolic, then the description of fire, smoke, and brimstone coming from their mouths must be describing some type of artillery machine although the serpent tails with several heads is difficult to conjure a modern apparatus.
Chapter 10 presents the “little book” which John is to eat. Seven “thunders” vocalize some information which John was planning to write. However, he was told to seal up the utterances and do not write them. When the seventh angel speaks the mystery of God is completed.
From a historical prophetic perspective the Gutenberg printing device, a concept borrowed or stolen from the Chinese, was developed around 1400 and the first Bible in vernacular German was printed around 1450. The “little book” could possibly be the beginnings of the printed Bible.
11:1 John is given a rod and told to measure the temple of God, and the altar, and those who worship in that place.
11:7-13 The two witnesses are killed by the beast from the bottomless pit. Their dead bodies are seen for three and one-half days until they are brought back to life and afterwards caught up to heaven. This is followed by a great earthquake which demolishes 1/10 of the city (??) and 7 thousand men are slain.
11:19 Immediately following the earthquake the temple of God in heaven is opened accompanied by lightnings, voices, thunderings, an earthquake, and great hail.
The two witnesses are killed by the beast from the bottomless pit which/who would be known as Abaddon or Apollyon. The beast from the sea, popularly called the “antichrist”, does not appear until chapter 13.
The city hosting the death of the two witnesses is spiritually known as Sodom and Egypt and is also the place where Jesus Christ was crucified which would be outside Jerusalem. However, scripture indicates that Sodom, Egypt, and/or Jerusalem are spiritual places. Sodom refers to its immorality. Babylon and Egypt refer to captivity or bondage. Jerusalem refers to the Old Covenant, known allegorically as “Hagar” in Galatians 4:24, because the Old Covenant is a system of religious bondage. Therefore, it is most likely none of these actual places, rather, it is within the mind of every infidel and idolater.
There is an earthquake which kills 7,000 men, however, the key statement is: the REMNANT were alarmed and gave glory to God i.e. the infidels and idolaters are never said to repent but a remnant of true believers is always present.
12:1 The appearance of a woman in heaven along with the dragon are shown. The dragon drags one-third of the stars of heaven to the earth. The dragon confronts the woman who is about to give birth. The woman delivers a son, who will rule all nations, and He is caught up to God and God’s throne. The woman flees to the wilderness under the protection of God.
12:7 In heaven, Michael and his angelic army go to war with the dragon and his army. The dragon and his army are defeated and cast to the earth. Heaven announces the accuser of Christian brethren has been cast out. The dragon can now be overcome by the blood of the Lamb. The dragon, at this time, begins persecuting the woman.
12:15-16 The serpent creates a flood but the earth cracks open and drains the flood.
Many commentators and Revelation enthusiasts view parts of chapter 12 as a distant past revealing of Satan and his cohorts being thrown from the heavenly realm before the creation of humanity.
13:1-10 A beast rises from the sea. His power and authority comes from the dragon. One of his heads appears to be killed, but later this head is said to regain its life. After the resurrection of the beast or head it speaks great things, blasphemes against God and “makes” or declares war on the saints.
Over the years, it has been argued whether the beast is a person, an empire, or both. Most modern day so-called prophecy students consider the beast to be a person who is the leader of a future world ruling empire with control of all monetary “buying and spending”. It is also believed this “antichrist” will conquer and destroy many areas of the world (regardless of the massive weaponry and nuclear arms of several countries in the world). A reborn Roman Empire has been the favorite choice for the “antichrist’s” coming empire.
Does the beast (antichrist, as often called) actually die and then is resurrected to life? Some claim he/it only appears to die. Others argue if Satan has the ability to resurrect a dead person. Some claim the beast (or antichrist) is actually some demonic entity from the bottomless pit or some Nephilim type produced by Satan or his minions.
Also note that the beast declares war on the “Saints” which apparently does not include every person claiming to be a church member. In this instance, a “saint” would be a true believer with a more correct understanding of Jesus Christ of the New Covenant and the God of the Bible, not every breather claiming to be a registered church member.
13:11-18 A second beast, or the beast from the earth, which has the appearance of a lamb but speaks as the dragon is presented. This second beast has (or exercises) all the power of the first beast. This earth beast causes everyone to worship the first beast. He also performs wonders or possible miracles.
Worship by Thayer: 1) to kiss the hand, in token of reverence 2) to fall upon the knees and touch the ground with the forehead as an expression of profound reverence 3) in the NT by kneeling or prostration to do homage (to one) or make obeisance, whether in order to express respect or to make supplication. The implication is to express homage or reverence, not to actually worship in the manner or thought that one would worship God.
This second beast tells the earth residents to make (to produce, construct, form, fashion, etc.) an image to the first beast. The image was given life, the ability to speak, and anyone not worshipping the image should be killed.
It appears the people make their own image and it is not an actual image or statue created or fashioned by the second beast. A literal event of this nature would either be astronomical supernatural magic or an extremely well developed futuristic mechanization.
And he (assumed to be the second beast) requires everyone to receive a mark in their right hand or forehead for the right (privilege?) to buy or sell. The mark is defined as: the name of the beast; or the number of his name which is 666.
The number of the beast is said to be the “number of a man” (not necessarily that of the beast). The three Greek letters making up the number 666 are: chi, 600, which is short for Christos); xi, 60, which is a cross; and stigma, 6, which means “pierced.” This describe the cross on which the Messiah was to be pierced.
A paraphrase of verse 13:18 could read: “Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, which he usurped; for the number is that of a particular man, Jesus Christ; and His number is six hundred and sixty-six.”
Also, a mark i.e. a tattoo, is a symbol of slave ownership. The marked person is a slave to the beast. The person worshipping money, valuables, and the acquiring of wealth is a slave to the beast.
There are currently various opinions concerning the correct or exact definition of the beast mark: a microchip within the skin; or a DNA transformation.
At the beginning of chapter 13 a beast rises from the sea, in a similar manner as the four beasts of Daniel 7. No one actually believes the beast rises from a literal sea, rather even Lindsey and LaHaye, claim the sea, in this case, is symbolic of people and/or nations of people. However, the sea in 8:8-8 is considered a literal sea. There are other instances of seas and earthquakes that are considered literal by some people.
It is my belief that the remainder of the Revelation has not been fulfilled and is therefore, still prophetic. This would include the downfall of Mystery, Babylon, the deconsecrating of the disheveled Church, followed by the Millennial reign of Jesus Christ and his elect.
The beginning of the Revelation through the fall of Mystery, Babylon, was prophecy at one time but is now historical events. That does not deny the event of secondary fulfillment. Some of the events appear to have modern secondary fulfillment today: such as sea life in the Pacific dying do to Fukushima radiation; the Mideast wars involving the USA for the benefit of the nation of Israel and the so-called one world government (Syria does not have a Rothschild bank; Libya intended to create their own currency based on a gold standard)
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