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Notes for

The Revelation

Chapter Nine


1. These last three warnings tell of events which are worse than the first four!

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2. Luke 10:18 The "star" is Satan

And He [Jesus] said to them, I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven.

Revelation 9:11

And they had a king over them, which is the angel of the bottomless pit, whose name in the Hebrew tongue is Abaddon [destruction], but in the Greek tongue has his name Apollyon [the destroyer].

Psalm 40:1-3 It is also the "miry" pit of sin

To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David.

I waited patiently for the LORD; and He inclined unto me, and heard my cry. He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a Rock, and established my goings. And He has put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the LORD.

It is Satan who has control of the bottomless pit (which is the opposite of the solid "Rock" on which Christians stand), and it is he who loosed the "locusts" upon the world in an attempt to destroy God’s kingdom. But as we can see in the text his plan was neatly circumvented by God protecting His own. Once started, however, the destruction could not be stopped, because like locusts, Satan's followers are all for themselves and care little for authority. Although they are said to have a king over them, he is simply the one who has the greatest ability to get them what they want.

Satan, true to his selfish nature, doesn’t care about his human followers on the earth, they are expendable from his point of view, so he carried on with his plan. Whether the king of the north or the king of the south are on top matters little to him in the long run, for it is by war and/or entertainment that he secures the attention of the world. He is only concerned with himself and his angel followers. The "smoke" which obscures the light was a new religion and it is was he who let it loose on the world. It is called Islam, and has a Friday observance. Now the Sabbath was flanked on both sides!

In a clever move Satan based this religion on Abraham's other son, Ishmael. Those who follow it claim they also worship the God of Abraham, but do not see Jesus as His Son. See "Islamic View of Christianity".

Genesis 16:11-12 Hagar’s son

And the Angel of the LORD said to her [Hagar], Behold, you are with child, and shall bear a son, and shall call his name Ishmael; because the LORD has heard your affliction. And he will be a wild man; his hand will be against every man, and every man's hand against him; and he shall dwell in the presence of all his brethren.

Genesis 17:18-21 But Abraham pleaded for him

And Abraham said to God, O that Ishmael might live before you!

And God said, Sarah your wife shall bear you a son indeed; and you shall call his name Isaac: and I will establish My covenant with him for an everlasting covenant, and with his seed after him.

And as for Ishmael [your other son], I have heard you: Behold, I have blessed him, and will make him fruitful, and will multiply him exceedingly; twelve princes shall he beget, and I will make him a great nation. But My covenant will I establish with Isaac, which Sarah shall bear to you at this set time in the next year.

This angel is picturing the attacks on the eastern empire by the Islamic Arabs during 629 – 1299AD. They are called "locusts" because they were so many and so destructive.

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3. Psalm 52:8 "grass.. green.... tree"

But I am like a green olive tree in the house of God: I trust in the mercy of God for ever and ever.

Jeremiah 11:16

The LORD called your name, A green olive tree, fair, and of goodly fruit…

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4. "not kill" = Although waves of Islamic Arabs overran the nations of the east, and even attempted to enter Europe through Greece, they were not able to cross over into that area for many centuries. Not until the Turks of the Ottoman empire attacked on July 27, 1299 were they even partially successful. Of that time God said they would be able to "torment" for 5 months of prophetic days which means 5 x 30 day/years, a total of 150 years which ended in 1449.

The religion Islam (self-submission to the will of the God of Abraham whose name is "Allah, the Merciful, the Compassionate") is based around the words of the prophet Mohammed (570 - 632AD). He wrote a book which is called the Koran, and Islam today consists of the many nations who accept that book. Its followers are called "Muslims" or "Moslems". Their self-proclaimed purpose is to repair the errors made to the sacred writings of the Bible by the Jews, and convert all peoples to "the way of peace". Mohammed accepted the inspiration of the Old Testament and claimed to be a successor to Moses. Although he did not recognise Jesus as God, he did accept Him as a prophet.

The prominent nationality in Islam was at first Arab, then Turk, with the people known as Moors also having a great part to play in the world shattering events. This latter group advanced from North Africa into Spain and eventually into France, while the Turks came into Europe as far as Venice.

See "The Islamic View of Christianity".

It was the Saracens and Turks taking over Jerusalem in the land of Palestine which led to the crusades of the middle ages, and also the campaigns in the first World war (Galipoli etc.). Although Turkey today seems a backward and third world country, it was once, and that not so very long ago, one of the major powers in the civilized world. In 1449 the emperor of the Roman empire asked the sultan's permission before he was enthroned.

Always a threat to "Christian" Europe its demise as a world power was seen as a major event in 1840.

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5. Exodus 29:6 "crowns" can be turbans

[Speaking of Aaron, God said to Moses] And you shall put the mitre upon his head, and put the holy crown upon the mitre.

War horses with long-haired men on them! No wonder that John heard the sound of many horses running into battle. As he watched he saw that their weapons worked backwards as well as forward, which he called having "stings in their tails". He also noticed that they had the faces of men, grave and composed, not wild as normal warriors. This was because they were fighting a "holy" war in which their public aim was to attract converts. In reality, of course, the majority only followed that way when it suited them. Personal gain and honour in battle were the real driving forces.

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6. They are under the control of the evil one, following his suggestions. In a natural situation locusts do not have a leader.

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7. This is the voice of the High Priest, not one of the beasts. Remember that Jesus is standing at the altar offering up the prayers of the saints?

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8. The river Euphrates ran from one corner to the other of the city of Babylon and was a great source of wealth to it.

These angels are the ones commissioned by God to stop the world from self-destructing while there is still a chance of saving some indivuals out of it. Now they were being told to loosen their grip on peace and allow the world to have some of its own way, more than usual, for a specified time. Although God has given us the right of self-determination, He also has a responsibility to make sure that we use it as mature intelligences, so He, like any other parent, has the moral obligation to treat us as children until we grow up.

Revelation 7:1

And after these things I saw four angels standing on the four corners of the earth, holding the four winds of the earth, that the wind should not blow on the earth, nor on the sea, nor on any tree.

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9. God does not give a start or end date for this rather precise prophecy. Therefore it must be searched for in history. In other words, the details of it were not intended to be known until JUST BEFORE or AFTER the event. Its inclusion here was to lend credence to the certainty of The Revelation being made to John.

See "The time periods of The Revelation 8 & 9" for details

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10. 200,000,000 = Two hundred million is a lot of men.

"brimstone" = sulphur

"fire, smoke and brimstone ...by these three was the third part of men killed."

This is a graphic description of horsemen using guns pointing forward or backwards by a man who had no idea what a gun was. What John saw he endeavoured to explain using ordinary human thoughts so that those who followed him would have an idea of what was coming. With the benefit of hindsight we now know what he was looking at. It was around the time of these wars that these weapons were introduced to Europe.

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11. Isaiah 44:9-21 The foolishness of idol makers

They that make a graven image are all of them vanity; and their delectable things shall not profit; and they are their own witnesses; they see not, nor know; that they may be ashamed. Who has formed a god, or molten a graven image that is profitable for nothing? Behold, all his fellows shall be ashamed: and the workmen, they are of men: let them all be gathered together, let them stand up; yet they shall fear, and they shall be ashamed together.

The smith with the tongs both works in the coals, and fashions it with hammers, and works it with the strength of his arms: yes, he is hungry, and his strength fails: he drinks no water, and is faint. The carpenter stretches out his rule; he marks it out with a line; he fits [or smooths] it with planes, and he marks it out with the compass, and makes it after the figure of a man, according to the beauty of a man; that it may remain in the house.

He hews [cuts] him down cedars, and takes the cypress and the oak, which he strengthens [or grows] for himself among the trees of the forest: he plants an ash, and the rain does nourish it. Then shall it be for a man to burn: for he will take of it, and warm himself; yes, he kindles it [or makes it into a fire], and bakes bread; yes, [then] he makes a god [of the remainder], and worships it; he makes it a graven image, and falls [or bows] down thereto.

He burns part of it in the fire; with part of it he eats flesh; he roasts [a] roast, and is satisfied: yes, he warms himself, and says, Aha, I am warm, I have seen the fire: and the residue of it he makes a god, even his graven image: he falls down to it, and worships it, and prays to it, and says, Deliver me; for you are my god.

They have not known nor understood: for he [Satan] has shut their eyes, that they cannot see; and their hearts, that they cannot understand [because of their sinful behaviour]. And none considers in his heart, neither is there knowledge nor understanding to say, I have burned part of it in the fire; yes, also I have baked bread upon the coals of it; I have roasted flesh, and eaten it: and shall I make the residue of it an abomination? Shall I fall down to the stock of a tree?

He feeds on ashes: a deceived heart [his own] has turned him aside, that he cannot deliver his soul, nor say, Is there not a lie [a false thing] in my right hand?

Remember these, O Jacob and Israel; for you are My servant: I have formed you; you are My servant: O Israel, you shall not be forgotten of Me.

All the warnings and events had no lasting effect upon the people.

Consider Exodus 7:10-18 and pharaoh’s rejection of Jesus.

 

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