What is the Coming Tribulation All About? Part 11

August 27, 2014 at 10:09 AM 3 comments

Trumpet Judgments of Revelation

Trumpet Judgments of Revelation

In our previous article on the Tribulation, Part 10, we began discussing the first couple of Trumpet Judgments that take place from the Seventh Seal Judgment of Revelation 8. For this article, we’ll continue looking at more of the Trumpet Judgments.

Starting with the 3rd Trumpet Judgment, we learn the following from Revelation 8:10-11:

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. 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.”

What is being described by John is likely a meteor or comet. As it enters the earth’s atmosphere, it appears to burn like a torch. We’ve seen this phenomenon with spacecraft coming back to earth from outer space. We know that if the heat shields fail on this reentry, the entire space capsule (and anyone inside) would be destroyed by fire. There are plenty of artist’s renderings of this event throughout the ‘Net and in books as well.

Reentry of a space capsule

Reentry of a space capsule

That being the case, we know that what John saw was something approaching and entering earth’s atmosphere. As it continued its journey through the higher elevations of earth’s atmosphere, the fire trail of the object likely grew brighter and the longer. The text tells us that this object – whatever it was that John saw – landed on and affected one-third of the rivers and the springs. This tells us that the fresh water supplies of the earth up to one-third will be affected.

Whatever this object is, it manages to poison the waters that it affects. It is called “wormwood” because wormwood, during John’s day, was a plant that made water taste very brackish. Drinking enough of it would make one sick. The word “wormwood” literally means “bitter” and note the text tells us that “many men died from the waters, because they were made bitter.” This simply means that whatever toxin this falling star brings to earth, it imperils one-third of the fresh water system enough so that drinking it becomes fatal for many.

Thomas Constable notes that “It was the name of a bitter herb that was fatally poisonous to some people and was a symbol of divine punishment (Jeremiah 9:15; Jeremiah 23:15; Lamentations 3:15; Lamentations 3:19; Amos 5:7).” He also points out that it should remind us of the judgment that God poured out on Israel in the wilderness (Exodus 15).

Following the 3rd Trumpet Judgment, the 4th occurs, as highlighted in Revelation 8:12.

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

Many judgments that occur during the Tribulation period have an effect on one-third of the population, one-third of nature, or one-third of something else. Here, with the 4th Trumpet Judgment, the fourth angel sounds and one-third of the sun, moon, and stars were affected. God turns out the lights – at least one-third.

Now please take the time to consider the results of one-third of the sun going dark. Not only will that greatly dim the heavenly lights, but it will also result in a drastic change in the environment, temperature, and weather. You want to know about so-called “climate change”? Here it is, but God is the One who controls it, as He controls all else. I don’t think we can really imagine what will transpire because of this 4th judgment.

Constable points out, “The text seems to imply that God will reduce the intensity of light from these sources by one-third (cf. Matthew 27:45). Perhaps a partial eclipse or pollution in the atmosphere is in view. Such a reduction in light, and consequently temperature, would have a devastating effect on the earth.

Generally, I think we are simply reminded of time when we turn the lights off in our homes. It becomes dark, but the temperature doesn’t change. However, the sun of course, is the source of the earth’s light and heat. Without it, there would be no life on earth at all. Science has long told us that if the earth were moved off its appointed place in space by only a few degrees or if the moon drew closer to the earth by a few degrees, havoc would likely result. When the sun goes dark by one-third, there will be havoc on the earth, period. It will not only be much darker (even during the day) when this happens, but other things will be affected.

John then tells us what he sees next, in Revelation 8:13.

“Then 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’!”

An eagle flies through the heavens and announces the coming three woes along with the remaining trumpet judgments. The woes themselves are especially terrible because the target of each of them is the people on the earth.

It would be very good for each person to take some time to study these passages and focus on their reality. We don’t spend enough time doing that these days, but we spend a ton of time using our smart phones, playing video games, and being on the computer. Our attention span has grown much shorter (not by accident either) and it is more difficult for us to be and remain focused on the things of God.

We’ll be back next time to discuss the remaining Trumpet Judgments.

Entry filed under: Dr. Fred, Religious - Christian - End Times, Religious - Christian - Prophecy, salvation. Tags: , .

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3 Comments

  • […] our last article in this series on the Tribulation, we covered the 3rd and 4th Trumpet judgments of Revelation 8 as well as the first […]

  • 2. kochmachine  |  August 27, 2014 at 5:51 PM

    Heard “The Bible Answer Man” mention while dial surfing that “tribulation” in NT terms just refers to our own personal conflicts. Whew, what?

    • 3. modres  |  August 27, 2014 at 6:07 PM

      Yep he is more aligned with reformed or aspects of Preterism. Rejected anything literal for allegory with respect to biblical prophecy a while ago. Good ol’ Hank Hannegraf.


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