Graceful Perseverance: The Bible, New Testament; Part 2 – 8/4
Welcome to this week’s blog. For the next several weeks, I will continue to focus on my favorite book, the Bible.
This week I will continue with part two of the Bible, the New Testament (the Bible, Part 2). I will identify the purpose of each book, the author of each book, the date written, key verses and key people involved to help give you a better understanding of the Bible before you dive into it on your own.
When you open your Bible, you will find the New Testament has 27 books, starting with Matthew (28 chapters) and ending with Revelation (22 chapters). To date, I’ve completed the overview of the Old Testament, 39 books, Genesis (50 chapters) and ending with Malachi (4 chapters). In regards to the New Testament, I’ve completed the overview of 26 books, starting with the book of Matthew through the book of Jude.
If you wish to revisit any of the Old Testament or New Testament blogs, you can find them on my website: https://www.thewitnesstoday.com/blog-archives.
The author and compiler of the final book of the New Testament is John, from the Island of Patmos. For hundreds of centuries there have been many approaches to interpreting the book of Revelation. Many of these approaches have supporters, but none of which have proved to be the only way to interpret or read this last book of the Bible.
The book of Revelation is written in “apocalyptic” form – a type of Jewish literature that uses symbolic imagery to communicate hope (in the ultimate triumph of God) for all of us who will be in the midst of persecution. The events in Revelation are ordered according to literary, rather than a traditional, chronological timeline. Revelation provides a powerful message of warning and instruction for end times or otherwise known as judgment day.
Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of this prophecy, and blessed are those who hear it and take to heart what is written in it, because the time is near. – Revelation 1:3 (NIV).
The purpose of the book of Revelation is to reveal the full identity of Christ, and to give warning and hope to believers. The author, Apostle John wrote the book of Revelation approximately 95 A.D. (From the Latin word annō Dominī – stands for “In the year of the Lord”), from the Island of Patmos.
Below is the chapter I have covered in this week’s blog. This format will help readers move through the book of Revelation at their own pace. I encourage you to study and jot down your questions as you go through each chapter and the supporting scripture.
Revelation - Chapter 8-10: The 7 Trumpets
The sounding of the seven trumpets will occur in succession leading up to the final seventh trumpet on the day of “Day of the Lord.”
The purpose of sounding the seven trumpets is to give the world a final warning or a wakeup call from God, before God withdraws His spirit completely from earth, and seals the destiny of every living soul. As we mentioned in earlier, we can expect to see the trumpets sound the earth in quick succession during the early reign of the 8th King.
We believe that at any moment, the first of seven trumpets will blast, followed by the remaining six trumpets in rapid succession. The short reign of the 7th King has come to an end, and the 8th King is in the early years of his reign. The world will be on the verge of witnessing unprecedented, catastrophic events. It is then that God will seize the attention of all mankind.
The trumpets have three primary purposes. The sounding of these trumpets are warnings to urge us to make sure our faith is firmly secured in Christ. We know by biblical scripture the three primary goals of the seven trumpets are as follows:
1. To warn us that judgment is certain to come.
2. To call the forces of good and evil into battle.
3. To announce the return of the King, the Messiah, who will overcome the world and reign for 1,000 years.
When the seventh trumpet sounds, the kingdom of the world will be the Kingdom of our Lord, and of the Messiah. It is then that He will reign for 1,000 years.
Remember when the sixth seal was opened and the 144,000 saints were sealed? We learned that the 144,000 must be sealed before the seventh seal can be opened. And it is only the Lamb of God who is worthy to open the seventh seal.
When the seventh seal is opened there is a silence in heaven for approximately thirty minutes. This dramatic pause in time is devoted to prayer of the angels and the saints. Seek God in times of silence to honor Him, His power and His might. In this time of silence and prayer, it conveys trust and confidence in God. A time to seek His strength, and provide the justice against the oppressors that we pray.
The seventh seal is now open. And the seven angels, who have the seven trumpets, are preparing to sound them. The trumpet judgments, like the seal judgments are only partial judgments. God’s final, and complete judgment has not yet come.
There were seven angels who stood before God. These angels were handed the seven trumpets. And last in John’s vision is yet another angel who has a golden censer. This angel is also standing at the altar. There was much incense to offer from the prayers of God’s people. The angel took the smoke of the incense, and the prayers of all of God’s people, and placed them on the altar in front of God’s throne. The angel took the censor, filled it with fire from the altar, and hurled it onto the earth causing thunder, rumblings, flashes of lighting, and an earthquake. This Angel’s act symbolizes the judgment of God, released upon the earth in answer to the prayers of the saints for justice for those who had been oppressed and killed.
This shows that judgment, vindication, and revenge are in God’s hands, not mans. This shows us that no matter how strong the desire to exact revenge, and retaliation toward our enemies, our work is to pray to God for His justice. Pray for God’s Will to come upon your enemies. And learn to forgive them for they know not what they do. The wrath of God will come down on those who have wronged us. We simply turn these individuals over to God’s wrath, and learn to forgive them, as we pray for our own forgiveness.
For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. – Matthew 6:14-15 (ESV).
It was then that the seven angels, with their seven trumpets, prepared to sound them.
When he opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour. And I saw the seven angels who stand before God, and seven trumpets were given to them. – Revelation 8:1-2 (NIV).
Another angel, who had a golden censer, came and stood at the altar. He was given much incense to offer, with the prayers of all God’s people, on the golden altar in front of the throne. The smoke of the incense, together with the prayers of God’s people, went up before God from the angel’s hand. – Revelation 8:3-4 (NIV).
Then the angel took the censer, filled it with fire from the altar, and hurled it on the earth; and there came peals of thunder, rumblings, flashes of lightning and an earthquake. Then the seven angels who had the seven trumpets prepared to sound them. – Revelation 8:5-6 (NIV).
1st Trumpet Sounded: The first angel sounded his trumpet, and there came hail and fire mixed with blood, and it was hurled down on the earth. A third of the earth was burned up, a third of the trees were burned up, and all the green grass was burned up. – Revelation 8:7 (NIV).
2nd Trumpet Sounded: 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. A third of the living creatures in the sea died, and a third of the ships were destroyed. – Revelation 8:8-9 (NIV).
3rd Trumpet Sounded: The third angel sounded his trumpet, and a great star, blazing like a torch, fell from the sky on a third of the rivers and on the springs of water—the name of the star is Wormwood. A third of the waters turned bitter, and many people died from the waters that had become bitter. – Revelation 8:10-11 (NIV).
4th Trumpet Sounded: 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. 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! – Revelation 12-13 (NIV).
5th Trumpet Sounded (1st WOE is past): Then the fifth angel sounded: And I saw a star fallen from heaven to the earth. To him was given the key to the bottomless pit. And he opened the bottomless pit, and smoke arose out of the pit like the smoke of a great furnace.
So, the sun and the air were darkened because of the smoke of the pit. Then out of the smoke locusts came upon the earth. And to them was given power, as the scorpions of the earth have power. They were commanded not to harm the grass of the earth, or any green thing, or any tree, but only those men who do not have the seal of God on their foreheads.
And they were not given authority to kill them, but to torment them for five months. Their torment was like the torment of a scorpion when it strikes a man. In those days men will seek death and will not find it; they will desire to die, and death will flee from them.
The shape of the locusts was like horses prepared for battle. On their heads were crowns of something like gold, and their faces were like the faces of men. They had hair like women's hair, and their teeth were like lions' teeth. And they had breastplates like breastplates of iron, and the sound of their wings was like the sound of chariots with many horses running into battle.
They had tails like scorpions, and there were stings in their tails. Their power was to hurt men five months. And they had as king over them the angel of the bottomless pit, whose name in Hebrew is Abaddon, but in Greek he has the name Apollyon. One woe is past. Behold, still two more woes are coming after these things. – Revelation 9:1-12 (NKJV).
6th Trumpet Sounded (2nd WOE is past): Then the sixth angel sounded: And I heard a voice from the four horns of the golden altar which is before God, saying to the sixth angel who had the trumpet, Release the four angels who are bound at the great river Euphrates. So, the four angels, who had been prepared for the hour and day and month and year, were released to kill a third of mankind.
Now the number of the army of the horsemen was two hundred million; I heard the number of them. And thus, I saw the horses in the vision: those who sat on them had breastplates of fiery red, hyacinth blue, and sulfur yellow; and the heads of the horses were like the heads of lions; and out of their mouths came fire, smoke, and brimstone.
By these three plagues a third of mankind was killed--by the fire and the smoke and the brimstone which came out of their mouths. For their power is in their mouth and in their tails; for their tails are like serpents, having heads; and with them they do harm.
But the rest of mankind, who were not killed by these plagues, did not repent of the works of their hands, that they should not worship demons, and idols of gold, silver, brass, stone, and wood, which can neither see nor hear nor walk. And they did not repent of their murders or their sorceries or their sexual immorality or their thefts. – Revelation 9:13-21 (NKJV).
Then I saw another mighty angel coming down from heaven. He was robed in a cloud, with a rainbow above his head; his face was like the sun, and his legs were like fiery pillars. He was holding a little scroll, which lay open in his hand. He planted his right foot on the sea and his left foot on the land, and he gave a loud shout like the roar of a lion. When he shouted, the voices of the seven thunders spoke. And when the seven thunders spoke, I was about to write; but I heard a voice from heaven say, ‘Seal up what the seven thunders have said and do not write it down.’
Then the angel I had seen standing on the sea and on the land raised his right hand to heaven. And he swore by him who lives for ever and ever, who created the heavens and all that is in them, the earth and all that is in it, and the sea and all that is in it, and said, ‘There will be no more delay!’ – Revelation 10:1-6 (NIV).
In the days when the seventh angel is about to sound his trumpet, the mystery of God will be accomplished, just as he announced to his servants the prophets. Then the voice that I had heard from heaven spoke to me once more: ‘Go, take the scroll that lies open in the hand of the angel who is standing on the sea and on the land.’
So, I went to the angel and asked him to give me the little scroll. He said to me, ‘Take it and eat it. It will turn your stomach sour, but in your mouth, it will be as sweet as honey.’
I took the little scroll from the angel’s hand and ate it. It tasted as sweet as honey in my mouth, but when I had eaten it, my stomach turned sour.
Then I was told, ‘You must prophesy again about many peoples, nations, languages and kings.’ – Revelation 10:7-11 (NIV).
When the seventh trumpet is sounded, it is the end of the 7-Year Tribulation. The sounding of the seventh trumpet is announcing the arrival of Jesus, the Messiah, the Son of God. This is the official “Day of the Lord.” There will be no turning back at this point. The doors of penitence have been closed. The coming judgments are no longer partial, as they were a warning in the beginning, but will now be complete in all of its destruction.
God is in full control, and He has now unleashed His full wrath on the evil world that refuses to turn to Him. But in the days when the seventh angel is about to sound his trumpet, the mystery of God will be accomplished, just as he announced to his servants the prophets. – Revelation 10:7 (NIV).
The rest of mankind who were not killed by these plagues still did not repent of the work of their hands; they did not stop worshipping demons, and idols of gold, silver, bronze, stone and wood – idols that cannot see or hear or walk. Nor did they repent of their murders, their magic arts, their sexual immorality or their thefts. – Revelation 9:20-21 (NIV).
7th Trumpet Sounded (3rd WOE is past): The seventh angel sounded his trumpet, and there were loud voices in heaven, which said: The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Messiah, and he will reign for ever and ever. – Revelation 11:15 (NIV).
And the twenty-four elders, who were seated on their thrones before God, fell on their faces and worshiped God, saying: We give thanks to you, Lord God Almighty, the One who is and who was, because you have taken your great power and have begun to reign. The nations were angry, and your wrath has come. The time has come for judging the dead, and for rewarding your servants the prophets and your people who revere your name, both great and small— and for destroying those who destroy the earth. Then God’s temple in heaven was opened, and within his temple was seen the ark of his covenant. And there came flashes of lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder, an earthquake and a severe hailstorm. – Revelation 11:16-19 (NIV).
The biblical mystery of the Lord has been, and will continue to be fulfilled. In the Book of John, John points out that God’s removal of all evil, and the final exaltation of Christ as Lord. This undeniable declaration will bring fear to God’s enemies, to those who do not believe in Jesus Christ as their Messiah.
But for God’s chosen ones, it brings hope, and peace. Believers long for God’s people to be vindicated. Believers pray for justice to be carried out, and His biblical prophecy, and promises to be fulfilled. We must pray eagerly for the fulfillment of God’s promises.
In biblical prophecy, from John to Matthew, to Mark and Isaiah, and so many more books of the Bible, God has revealed all that we need to know today to live for Him. It should be a desire for all of us to prepare, pray and be ready for the “Day of the Lord,” because it’s no longer “if it’s going to happen,” but “when it’s going to happen.” There should be no more emphasis placed on speculation or interpretation about these last days, or end times, as opposed to living today for God while we wait patiently for His return.
Let’s recap. This week we covered chapters eight through ten of Revelation in the New Testament. Next week I will continue with chapter eleven (The Two Witnesses).
I am hopeful that you are finding this format an easy, quick overview of the New Testament. I am hopeful that you are finding this format an easy, quick overview of the New Testament.
Blessings until next week,
Debra Pauli Unstoppable Believer
Scripture Quoted From: New International Version Bible (NIV) Archived Blogs: https://www.thewitnesstoday.com/blog-archives