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Now when Jesus opened the seventh seal, something different happened. Silence! It was completely quiet in Heaven for about a half an hour. Then John saw the seven angels, and seven trumpets were given to them. What do you think they’re going to do with those? Yup… It’s not going to be quiet much longer. Because they’re gonna blow them!
But before that, another angel came and offered to God sweet-smelling spices, along with the prayers of all the saints.
Then the angel took a container, filled it with fire from the altar, and threw it on the earth. Boom! Bang! Rumble! There were crashes of thunder, roaring, flashes of lightning, and an earthquake.
We know that some of what follows might sound kind of fierce to you, but now is a good time to remind you that we don’t want all the evil in the world to go on forever. No. Not at all. God has a plan and a promise to end this war between evil and good. And at some point He’s gonna do away with all evil and take back His own planet. (And it’s okay for the Creator God to take back His own planet, right? Well, yeah!) And those who Follow Him will live in perfect peace and harmony and joy and love… forever. Good stuff. That’s the Big Plan, remember? Now back to those trumpets.
The seven angels holding those trumpets got ready to blow.
The first angel blew his trumpet — Dooooo-to-dooooo-to-dooooo-to-dooooo! — and a third of the earth was burned up.
Then the second angel blew his trumpet — Dooooo-to-dooooo-to-dooooo-to-dooooo! — and a third of the sea turned to blood.
Then the third angel blew his trumpet — Dooooo-to-dooooo-to-dooooo-to-dooooo! — and a third of the fresh water became poison. Bleh!
Then the fourth angel blew his trumpet — Dooooo-to-dooooo-to-dooooo-to-dooooo! — and a third of the sun, the moon, and the stars went dark. A third of the light was just gone!
Then an eagle flew directly over John’s head. It was proclaiming with a loud voice, “Trouble! Trouble! Trouble coming to those who live on the earth because of the next three trumpet blows coming! Woe! Woe! Woe! Trouble! Trouble! Trouble!”
For the first Big Trouble, the fifth angel blew his trumpet — Dooooo-to-dooooo-to-dooooo-to-dooooo! — and John saw a star that had fallen from the sky… as well as grasshoppers. The grasshoppers were given the power to hurt anyone without God’s Mark on them.
For the second Big Trouble, the sixth angel blew his trumpet — Dooooo-to-dooooo-to-dooooo-to-dooooo! — and four angels with 200 million horses went out and destroyed one third of the people on the earth.
But would you believe the people who were not destroyed still wouldn’t repent? They kept on worshiping their useless idols that cannot see or hear or walk. And they didn’t repent of their murdering, bad magic, immorality, or stealing. (People can be so stubborn when it comes to hanging on to their sin and idols. Let’s not be like that.)
Next John saw another powerful angel coming down from heaven. He was wrapped in a cloud, with a rainbow above his head. His face was like the sun and his legs were like pillars of fire. He held in his hand a little scroll that was open.
Then he shouted in a loud voice like a lion roaring. And when he shouted, the seven thunders spoke. John started to write down what the thunders said, but then he heard a voice from heaven say, “No, John, don’t write down what the thunders said.”
Then the angel said, “There will be no more waiting! In the days when the seventh angel is about to blow his trumpet, the mystery of God is completed, just as He has told His Heaven-Seers it would be.”
Then the voice from heaven began to speak to John again saying, “Go and take the open scroll in the hand of the angel.” So John went over to the angel and asked him, “May I have that little scroll.”
And the angel said to John, “Yes, take the scroll and eat it. It will make your stomach bitter, but it will be as sweet as honey in your mouth.” (That sounds like what happened with Ezekiel, doesn’t it?) John took the little scroll from the angel’s hand and ate it, and it did taste as sweet as honey. But after he swallowed it, his stomach didn’t feel so good. Then he was told: “You must Speak for God again, John. And you must get up and do some measuring.
“Then I will give My two witnesses the authority to tell it like it is. They will be My Seeing-Sayers. These two witnesses are the two olive trees, two lampstands. Anyone who wants to hurt these two… Boom Baby! Fire will come from the mouths of the two and will hush them up.”
Just like many of the things John saw and wrote down, these two witnesses probably aren’t simply two people, but instead probably represent two kinds of people. Could it be that they represent both the Jews and the not-Jews proclaiming God’s Word together to the world? We’ll see.
“These two Seers and Sayers of Mine will have the power to close up the sky so that it doesn’t rain. They have authority to turn the waters to blood and to strike the earth with any kind of whammy, as often as they want.
“Once these two are finished saying everything I tell them to, the beast that comes up from the bottomless pit, will kill them.“
Explanation time. Yes, sometimes God’s People are given great power and can bring whammies and Boom Baby! And, sometimes, God allows His People to experience pain and suffering. That’s okay. No big deal. God’s Big Plan is that one day there will be no more tears, but He didn’t promise no tears right now. Painful things will happen to us on planet earth while satan and his buddies are still around. So expect some tears in your lives. But our lifetimes on earth are very short compared to forever. So be strong and brave and hang in there til the “no tears time.”
For three and a half days people from ALLLLL over the world will look at the dead bodies of the two witnesses laying in the street… And those earthly-minded people will rejoice and celebrate, and even send gifts to each other, because they’ll be so glad that those two Heaven Seers-and-Sayers are gone.
But after three and a half days… something will happen. Whoooooooooo… The breath of life from God will enter those two Heaven Seers-and-Sayers. John saw them stand up on their feet.
Ahhhh! Everyone was so afraid. And then a loud voice from Heaven said to the two: “Hey! Come on up here!” So those two went up to Heaven in a cloud while their enemies just stood and stared at them.
Just then an earthquake shoooook the ground and a tenth of the city fell down flat.
And that was the end of the Second Big Trouble; and next comes the third. (But you have to go to the next story for that.)