Good Morning, Siblings!
Today’s readings are Revelation 4-8
Rabbit Trails from Christy’s Sister, Patti.
She is calling these Patti Rat’s Revelations (her childhood nickname making the title flow just right)
So this starts right off with a shofar talking to the author and showing him a game plan. In my mind, this is highly significant because the shofar is symbolic in signaling to us in times of trouble and triumph. It’s used to signal the beginning and the end- and now it’s physically talking to John and not just signaling a warning filling in the gaps and giving a game plan. Before, shofars were used in battle to signal what to do but now it’s actually forming the game plan. I already get goose bumps when I hear a shofar and that meaning just doubled for me.
So here we are with a door opened that reveals what’s going to happen. John is on a prison island. He is suffering persecution as he writes this. We are not going to be without our trials either.
Rev 4:3 I’m thinking these stones are symbolic for so many things. It would take days to research. Right off the bat I see they are nameless and faceless but authentic. The thrones would have been breath taking, I’m sure, and many people would embrace the throne and stop there.
Another thing is that there are 24 thrones and 12 tribes. But everywhere else you see 7’s and multiple of 7’s. I think the thrones somehow stand for the tribes. In Rev 21:21 we will also read that there are twelve gates to the Kingdom of Heaven.
Rev 4:6: the sea of glass separated him from the throne and the four animals guarding it had eye in the front and back. No one can successfully navigate and overthrow those thrones! Not happening. Those are uncharted waters that clearly show us everything to expect, meaning that nothing is hidden in the glass. Huge show of force and grandeur here. You can clearly see there’s no getting over the crystal glass waters unless you are wanted. I wonder if it was a sea of glass like a sheet or pieces of glass. Either way it would be very overwhelming but peaceful. Not scary like swamp water would be.
Rev 4:7: In our world, the lion would kill a calf and the eagle would eat the remains. The cow sits between two things that would eat him and the creature with the face of a man is vulnerable to all. Hmmm vulnerable but powerful all at the same time. I find this interesting and it also helps me remember these passages.
The lion is wild and rules the land. The eagle is free and rules the air.
Rev 5:1-4 The scroll was right before them but they couldn’t read it. Very symbolic like this book. Revelations is right before our eyes in this study but we really aren’t equipped to fully understand it.
The scroll has seven seals. The menorah has seven branches… everything points back to the seven spirits of God (Rev 1:4, Rev 3:1, Rev 4:5, Rev 5:6) and Yeshua being the light in the midst.
Rev 5:8 The prayers of the set apart ones are in bowls filled with incense, they are heard and collected. Not all answered though, because they are in a bowl filled with incense so to me that looks like they are being meditated on. There are several religions that have bowls of incense used during meditative prayer. Please note that I’m not suggesting we do that. On the contrary, we need to be careful in doing this for precisely that reason: we don’t want to mix unholy practices from other faiths in with our own (syncretism) and YHWH has not told us to do this. He isn’t sitting around just waiting on someone to revolutionize Christianity. He already did that. He’s just waiting on us to do what He said.
“Come see” on the first four seals. The fifth seal was watched by the martyrs. Perhaps the creatures were each guarding a seal and the rest of the seals didn’t need close guarding?
But still we can’t see what’s in the scroll until all the seals are broken. I think that’s like this book of Revelations. We can’t see what all it means until everything is in motion. This is still not the end. The breaking of the seals signals the preparation for the end, but it’s not the end. This is all to help us understand what we will be witnessing. Notice not one person has been raptured and pulled up at this point and the martyrs are told to get more rest because their group isn’t complete.
Rev 6:11 We aren’t escaping this mess. The martyrs are not yet completed!
Rev 6:13 That takes a lot of force to shake figs that aren’t ripe off a fig tree!
Rev 6:16 yet another repeat of “Old Testament” Hosea 10:8. I mean, this stuff is prophesied all through the Bible.
Going back to the rapture theory here. I hear so many people say “We won’t have to suffer all that because God will scoop is up!” When you read Rev 7:3 that can kind of makes you think that and give you some comfort in that theory but then there’s Rev 7:14 and Rev 7:16. They’re coming out of great distress and will hunger and thirst no more. And the sun won’t strike then with heat. Then he quotes Isaiah (I like to say his Hebrew name because it sounds cool Yeshiyahu ) Isaiah 25:8 = Rev 7:17 there are a few other books thrown in this verse that people of that time would have understood because they would have known the Torah and the Tanakh, Jeremiah 2:13 and 17:13. We need to read the prophesy they were reading in order to understand revelations.
Revelation 7:3 this reminds me of mass casualty training. In those incidents we actually write on people’s foreheads if they are viable. We have levels of viability. We triage and treat the ones that are more viable. I think we have a lot of people that are dead in the word and deeds and aren’t too viable in today’s world… in mass casualty situations if people are too complex or difficult to treat we leave them for dead. We only save those that are savable. I wonder if this is symbolic of Gods triage during these times.
Ezekiel 9 goes more in depth on this about people having marks on their forehead, I think this is a very important tie in to read.
Rev 7:4 Oh my goodness. So many religions think they have the 144,000. Right here it states from ALL the tribes of the children of Israel. Not from one religion. Not from one church. From ALL THE TRIBES. I once had a representative from a religion visit me. They stated that the 144000 was part of their religion and all have been selected by their authorities. I asked who represented which tribe and could I see pictures to see how different they looked….. blank stare.. many other “innocent” questions I had that day has black listed me from the list of houses they visit. I see them skip right by my house now. I feel so left out. (Christy’s note: welcome to Patti’s humor)
Starting in verse four it list tribes. It leaves some out! Very interesting
Rec 7:8 Hold up! The tribe of Joseph? That covers Manasseh and Ephraim. It specifically mentions tribe of Joseph. Is this a double portion? Joseph isn’t a tribe as Manasseh and Ephraim took his place/portion. There’s tribes missing here. Where’s The tribe of Dan? Numbers is one of my least favorite books to read. Numbers chapter 1 is one of my least favorite. My ADD can’t take it but this proves how important it is to “hear and listen” to the whole word. Here’s a list of the tribes: Manasseh, Ephraim, Benjamin, Asher, Dan, Naphtali, Issachar, Judah, Zebulon, Simeon, Reuben, Gad. In Rev 8 there are tribes missing and aren’t listed as having 12,000 sealed. I don’t know why, I’m just throwing that out there. This might not sound huge to you but if you were in the tribe of Dan it would be because you didn’t make that list!
Is Joseph standing in for Ephraim because we’re so lost? (Many people see the lost tribe of Ephraim as representing the Gentiles as they became so scattered throughout the earth. I’m of that thought as well, so that is where my perspective is coming from. We don’t have to agree, of course, but I wanted to disclose that). Joseph gave Ephraim the blessing and made us a tribe as well as Manasseh but Ephraim lost their way. They assimilated but they’re waking back up. Is Joseph stepping up to receive our portion and guide us back in? Are we receiving another blessing? Genealogy can trace many people’s roots to the other tribes but only spirituality can trace you to Ephraim.
Rev 8:1 starts off with a deafening silence. I can’t be silent for half a minute. Silence is uncomfortable that’s why we have filler words like “um” and “uh”, because people feel uncomfortable in silence. There is actually an interrogation technique where you ask a question and then go silent. People will sing like a bird and confess because the silence is so uncomfortable. Can you imagine half an hour of silence in Heaven? I would be the one whispering “What’s happening?! What’s going on??!! Somebody tell me something?!” (Christy’s note: I can’t stop laughing because this is so true, she absolutely would!)
That seventh seal was never verbalized as to what exactly it was. What did they see?? Did they just know what to do? I have a million questions here. The seven seals and the seven trumpets both signal the ending.
Rev 8:3: I’m seeing the incense again. Meditative prayer is what always comes to mind. That is deep meaningful prayer. I’m lacking in that arena lately. (Christy’s note: I’m always careful when I write about stuff like this because so many are easily led away from the Faith through doors labeled “meditation”, but I absolutely agree with Patti’s point. We just need to be careful to remain pure in our faith and trust in YHWH.)
I know I have already said this but feel I should say it again. This vision was not meant to lay out the future and tell us what will happen, it was meant for us to listen to it so that when it happens we have that “aha!” moment and an understanding. Chapter 8 confirms this to me. I’ll go deeper and explain why but not too deep because Christy is rushing me!!
When the 7th seal is broken it allows the sounding of the trumpets. Maybe the seventh seal didn’t have anything written at all. Maybe it’s the trumpets that are more significant here, not the seal at all. There’s a ton of sevens in this chapter and lots of mentions of the trumpets. I think the seventh seal could have been a sign to the messengers to “let the show begin”
The trumpets aka shofars are an instrument of war!
Something else to consider. What was the one thing Satan knew better than anyone else? “The whole word of the Bible” he sparred with the word on the mountain with Yeshua himself. Satan knows these visions better than us. Will he try to trick us and create some of these prophecies? Will he high-jack these visions and make us think they’re happening? That’s why we need to know ALL the word because there is a timeline and many other things that should be happening to usher in these visions.
We’re about to hear all about the synagogue of Satan. Brace yourselves
Rev 8:6 wow. They were given the trumpets. They had to prepare. These trumpets appear to be war weapons. It reminds me of the bagpipes used by the Scots. As each shofar is blown, war is unleashed in this chapter. It really makes me wonder how much evil I have driven away from my house by blowing my shofar and crying out to the Father in prayer.
Rev 8:7- fire! My worst fear. So right off the bat we lose a third of the earth to fire. It mentions trees and grass specifically. I’m sure the oxygen supply was compromised. Imagine the desperation of a third of the earth burning! This sounds terrifying.
Before we even get to Rev 8:11 we have lost a third of the earth, a third of the sea creatures rivers and springs are compromised. Whew. Food, water, shelter … gone.
Now to a rabbit trail.. wormwood. This is an oil produced from the plant which is used to rid the intestines of worms. Not a pleasant way to work yourself. It’s bitter. I have used a supplement with wormwood for my dog before. It’s very effective in cleaning out the ol’ intestines. I couldn’t imagine the agony of being thirsty and water tainted with wormwood being my only option. That’s painful! Drinking that water would ultimately dehydrate you, and painfully so.
Rev 8:12 Then, darkness which also means it will be cold.
Rev 8:13: an eagle is an opportunistic predator. A bird of prey, a scavenger who would normally snack on us if we’re dead. A scavenger feels sorry for us! Wow. That’s pretty bad considering his food supply was greatly disrupted and his trees were burned leaving him very limited areas to nest.
As I’m reading these chapters I feel the horror of what is being described. This is sobering stuff but we are living in sobering times.
Test everything, hold tight to what is good.~ 1 Thess 5:21
We are saved by Grace alone: Obedience is not the root of our salvation, it is the fruit!
May YHWH bless the reading of His Word!