A Study of Revelation

Rev. 5:10
10* “You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to our God; and they will reign upon the earth.”

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Notice when he made them to be a kingdom……….

We are in the Kingdom today, in God’s Kingdom the church. A Kingdom consists of those who are subject to a King. Christ is our king and is reigning on his throne in heaven at God’s right hand today. We in the church are subjects in his kingdom and are reigning with him today.

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Notice that we are also priests. Under the law of Moses the priests made atonement for the people’s sins by offering sacrifices. Today we are priests in the church. We have direct access to God’s throne by power through Jesus, our high priest.

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Notice that our reign is here on this earth. We are reigning on earth today in God’s spiritual kingdom the church just as Christ is reigning on his throne in heaven.

Rev. 5:11-12
11* Then I looked, and I heard the voice of many angels around the throne and the living creatures and the elders; and the number of them was myriads of myriads, and thousands of thousands,
12* saying with a loud voice, “Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing.”

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Art used by permission by Pat Marvenko Smith, copyright 1992.
To order prints visit:
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Rev. 5:13
13* And every created thing which is in heaven and on the earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all things in them, I heard saying, “To Him who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb, be blessing and honor and glory and dominion forever and ever.”

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Art used by permission by Pat Marvenko Smith, copyright 1992.
To order prints visit:
“Revelation Illustrated”

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Art used by permission by Pat Marvenko Smith, copyright 1992.
To order prints visit:
“Revelation Illustrated”

14* And the four living creatures kept saying, “Amen.” And the elders fell down and worshiped.

Christ has taken his placed on the throne beside God and is worth of our praise. The 4 living creatures represent all physical things and the 24 elders represent the spiritual lawgivers. All of our physical labors and all our spiritual worship must be directed toward God. Me must strive to serve Jesus in everything we do.

Revelation chapter 6

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Art used by permission by Pat Marvenko Smith, copyright 1992.
To order prints visit:
“Revelation Illustrated”


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Art used by permission by Pat Marvenko Smith, copyright 1992.
To order prints visit:
“Revelation Illustrated”


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Art used by permission by Pat Marvenko Smith, copyright 1992.
To order prints visit:
“Revelation Illustrated”

 

Rev. 6:1-8
6:1* ¶ Then I saw when the Lamb broke one of the seven seals, and I heard one of the four living creatures saying as with a voice of thunder, “Come.”
2* I looked, and behold, a white horse, and he who sat on it had a bow; and a crown was given to him, and he went out conquering and to conquer.
3* ¶ When He broke the second seal, I heard the second living creature saying, “Come.”
4* And another, a red horse, went out; and to him who sat on it, it was granted to take peace from the earth, and that men would slay one another; and a great sword was given to him.
5* When He broke the third seal, I heard the third living creature saying, “Come.” I looked, and behold, a black horse; and he who sat on it had a pair of scales in his hand.
6* And I heard something like a voice in the center of the four living creatures saying, “A quart of wheat for a denarius, and three quarts of barley for a denarius; and do not damage the oil and the wine.”
7* When the Lamb broke the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature saying, “Come.”
8* I looked, and behold, an ashen horse; and he who sat on it had the name Death; and Hades was following with him. Authority was given to them over a fourth of the earth, to kill with sword and with famine and with pestilence and by the wild beasts of the earth.

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As we begin to study the Seals, the Trumpets and the Plagues it is important to know, from the very beginning of our examination of this section, that we are dealing with visions which are parallel. The visions of the 7 seals, the 7 trumpets and the 7 plagues all cover the same time period. The first six events in each of these visions describe things which take place during the Christian dispensation (the time period we are presently in), the seventh event of each of these visions relates to the time of judgment.

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The difference in these visions is that they each describe different events which will affect mankind.

The seven seals describe the forces on this earth which affect the physical lives of men.

The seven trumpets describe those forces which affect the spiritual lives of men.

The seven plagues show the consequences of being disobedient to God.

As we begin with the 7 seals we should first start with an overall understanding of this vision. In brief, Christ opens each of the first four seals, as he does one of the four living creatures introduces the vision. Four horses of different colors are revealed and are ridden by four different riders.

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In order for armies to be strong during this period of history, they had to possess many horses. These horses are symbolic of the different types of wars Christians must fight, and their color determines the type of war being described.

Remember that the number “4” in Revelation relates to physical things. The events of the first 4 seals are physical events which must take place on earth during the Christian dispensation.

The 5th seal shows that God is aware of the physical persecutions and trials which Christians must suffer. It also shows that if Christians remain faithful through these trials, they will have a home in heaven with God.

The sixth seal goes to the end of time. It represents an end to all physical things here on earth and describes the total destruction to take place on the last day.

The 7th seal takes us to the time of judgment. All sinners will have their place in total destruction as symbolized by an earthquake which would be a great shaking of the people of the earth.

This demonstrates, then, that the vision of the seven seals is a picture of the entire Christian age and the final judgment. This is a problem for most commentators because they want to make Revelation into a chronological order of events. Most do not see that the 7 seals, the 7 trumpets and the 7 plagues are parallel. Because of this when they come to the judgment scene so early in the book of Revelation they misinterpret the visions, which in turn, causes them to misinterpret the rest of the book.

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As we have said, these three visions are parallel, they cover the entire Christian dispensation, the end of time, and the judgment. The reason we have three visions all covering the same period of time is because they all deal with different subjects. The seals deal with physical things that will happen in this world, the trumpets deal with spiritual matters, and the plagues show the consequences of disobedience to God throughout the Christian dispensation, the dispensation we are living in today.

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Let’s begin:

Rev. 6:1
6:1* ¶ Then I saw when the Lamb broke one of the seven seals, and I heard one of the four living creatures saying as with a voice of thunder, “Come.”

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The lamb is Christ. He is able to break the seals because He gave his life for the sins of man. In order to understand these “seals” we need to know something about the significance of a “seal” in Old Testament and New Testament times.

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A “seal” or signet was used as a symbol of authority. A king would place his seal upon a document to signify its authenticity. We have an example of this in Esther:

Esther 3:12
12 Then the king’s scribes were summoned on the thirteenth day of the first month, and it was written just as Haman commanded to the king’s satraps, to the governors who were over each province and to the princes of each people, each province according to its script, each people according to its language, being written in the name of King Ahasuerus and sealed with the king’s signet ring.

Today we put a signature on a document to indicate the same thing. In some cases, seals or stamps are still used. My diploma has a “seal” showing it comes with authority.

Seals also were used to preserve or secure something. We seal jars, packages and envelopes to secure their contents.

Therefore, the “seals” show that:
1) God has written and preserved the contents of this book
2) It is a message that comes from God.

In other words, since God has “sealed” this book the events cannot be changed by man. Just as a king would place his seal upon a document to make it a law, God has placed his seven divine seals on this book to show that the events contained therein will definitely occur. As Christ opens these seals to reveal the contents of this book, we must realize that the events pictured will absolutely take place. God has sealed them.

God has sealed this book with seven seals showing its divine completeness. The ancients used multiple seals to show the importance of a document. This is a book of great importance. It was written and sealed by the most powerful king of all – God Almighty.

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Rev. 6:1
6:1* ¶ Then I saw when the Lamb broke one of the seven seals, and I heard one of the four living creatures saying as with a voice of thunder, “Come.”

The Lamb opened the first seal and there was a voice of thunder indicating an event of tremendous important was about to be revealed Each of the first four seals is introduced by one of the living creatures. Since the events being describe deal with physical events taking place on the earth, the symbolic meaning of the living creatures represents God’s ability to see and know all the physical actions of mankind.

Rev. 6:2
2* I looked, and behold, a white horse, and he who sat on it had a bow; and a crown was given to him, and he went out conquering and to conquer.

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The first seal is opened and a white horse appears. The rider is carrying a bow and a crown is given to him. This is a picture of Christ.

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The symbolic white horse is used in Rev. 19:11, and in that passage its rider is definitely identified as Christ. The horse is symbolic of wars and battles which Christians will have to fight on this earth throughout the Christians age. The color white is always used to represent purity or holiness. Therefore, this white horse signifies a righteous war. In Rev. 19:19-21, the beast, the kings of the earth and their armies make war with Christ who sits upon the white horse. In Rev. 19:14 the army of Christ, Christians, are also pictured as sitting upon white horses and following Christ.

The bow carried by Christ indicates great strength in battle and the crown he wears represents power and authority.

This white horse is a symbolic description of the battle which Christ and his followers will fight on this earth. It is a war against evil. Jesus said :

Matt. 24:14
14* “This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come.

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Art used by permission by Pat Marvenko Smith, copyright 1992.
To order prints visit:
“Revelation Illustrated”

Christ is fighting this war against evil through his followers as they spread the gospel throughout the entire world. Christ conquers evil every time a person becomes obedient to the gospel Christians have a powerful weapon to use in this battle as symbolized by the bow. We also have great authority as symbolized by the crown. Our authority comes from God through His Word.

Eph. 6:10-13
10* ¶ Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might.
11* Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil.
12* For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.
13* Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm.

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Today Christ sits upon a white horse leading his followers who also sit upon white horses spreading the gospel throughout the world. This is a war which will definitely take place because God has sealed it. The white horse is being ridden throughout the world today.

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Rev. 6:3-4
3* ¶ When He broke the second seal, I heard the second living creature saying, “Come.”
4* And another, a red horse, went out; and to him who sat on it, it was granted to take peace from the earth, and that men would slay one another; and a great sword was given to him.

The horse in this seal is colored red which symbolizes bloodshed or death (cf. Gen. 37:31.

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The rider of this horse has the power to take peace from the earth and cause people to kill one another. It’s impossible to identify this rider as a specific person, he represents any force on this earth which is responsible for wars that cause people to kill each other. Jesus said:

Matt. 24:6,7
6* “You will be hearing of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not frightened, for those things must take place, but that is not yet the end.
7* “For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and in various places there will be famines and earthquakes.

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Throughout history men have been at war with one another, and it is no different today. This is one form of physical persecution through which Christians must remain faithful in order to be acceptable to God. These physical trials will always be present as long as the world exists because God has sealed it.

This rider has a great sword. This probably reminded the people of John’s time of the great Roman short sword. It was the supreme weapon of that age and was used to inflict terror and slaughterings upon many people. It is symbolic of any weapon which might be used to take peace from the earth.

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Rev. 6:5
5* When He broke the third seal, I heard the third living creature saying, “Come.” I looked, and behold, a black horse; and he who sat on it had a pair of scales in his hand.

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At the opening of the third seal a black horse appears. The color black is representative of mourning or death, therefore the events described by this seal will bring severe hardships and possibly even death to those affected by it. This horseman has a pair of balances in his hand. According to verse 6 they are used for weighing food. To weigh food would indicate that it is in short supply. This shows that throughout the Christian age there will be times of food shortages upon the earth. During these times food will have to be measured or, as we might put it, rationed.

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