Sunday, January 3, 2021

The Fifth Trumpet: The First Woe

 Temple Baptist Church - 1-3-2021

Revelation 9:1-12




A.  The inhibiters of the earth are those who have rejected the preaching of the gospel by the 144,000 sealed witnesses.  Verse 4 tells us that not all people on earth will be tormented because those who have not rejected the gospel are sealed and protected.


Revelation 8:13  And I beheld, and heard an angel flying through the midst of heaven, saying with a loud voice, Woe, woe, woe, to the inhabiters of the earth by reason of the other voices of the trumpet of the three angels, which are yet to sound!


Woe – “Alas, grief!” 


Alas defined - “unhappiness, pity, sorrow, regret”

Grief defined – “deep and poignant emotional distress caused by or as if by bereavement such as death.”


B.  Choices have consequences!  It takes a foolish man to reject God!  Twice in Psalms, the Bible declares that “The fool hath said in heart, There is no God!”


Psalms 14:1  The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good.


Psalms 53:1  The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. Corrupt are they, and have done abominable iniquity: there is none that doeth good.


Psalms 10:4  The wicked, through the pride of his countenance, will not seek after God: God is not in all his thoughts.


C.  At this point we have a Horror Story of horrendous proportions!  Over the years, Hollywood has made movies about ants, scorpions, spiders, and birds that have mutated and taken over the earth.  Destroying everything in their path.  In the movies, mankind survives, and the insects or animals are destroyed.  These movies always brought about both fear and a good ending.  This is not a fictional story nor will the ending be pretty!


D.  Verse 1.  The 5th Angel sounded and the star that fell from heaven is an angel, not a celestial body.  We are literalists and take the bible literally, but there are places in the Bible where we find allegories or metaphors.  This is one of those occasions.  In the Book of Revelation, we find the phrase “as it were” used 11 times.  This “star” is an Angel.


Revelation 1:20  The mystery of the seven stars which thou sawest in my right hand, and the seven golden candlesticks. The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches: and the seven candlesticks which thou sawest are the seven churches.


This angel was given the “key” to the bottomless pit.  The word “key” is mentioned in your Bible 6x.


The First Mention, an actual key to a door – Judges 3:25  And they tarried till they were ashamed: and, behold, he opened not the doors of the parlour; therefore they took a key, and opened them: and, behold, their lord was fallen down dead on the earth.


The next 5x that “key” is mentioned are not actual keys to open an actual door, but a specific way to open something.  A metaphor for the “power to open”: i.e., “key of David” 2x – “key of knowledge”1x – “key of the bottomless pit” 2x.


Revelation 1:18  I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.


Revelation 20:1  And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand.


The “bottomless pit” is a reference to hell within the earth.  I find the word “bottomless” interesting.  As people go to hell, they evidently sink down into the magma of the earth but, as the earth turns, the bottom is never found.  I saw a commercial years ago about Prell Shampoo where they dropped a pearl into a bottle of it and the pearl sand slowly toward the bottom of the bottle.  If at any time you rotated the bottle, the pearl could not come to rest because it was simply falling in the opposite direction.  Thus, it may be with the lost sinner in hell.  Always falling but never coming to rest.


E.  Verse 2.  There arose smoke out of the pit.  I think of volcanoes, when they erupt, produce great amounts of smoke and ash.  Yellowstone National Park is a place where magma is either exposed or encounters colder water to produce smoke and geysers.  Hell, when opened to the atmosphere, will produce such great smoke that the sun will be darkened.  Forest fires in the west create this effect to a lesser degree.  


F.  Verse 3.  Out of the smoke will come creatures that only God could have created.  Locust plagues have been a part of this earth's history over the ages.  Locusts are very destructive armies that destroy every living thing (plant life) that they come upon.  During their infestation out West that when they walked over the top of houses that they could hardly hear each other talk because of the noise.  They will come out of the smoke, but God has given them a power that normal locusts do not have, the power of a scorpion to hurt but not the power to kill.  The power to torture those it stings.


2 Peter 2:4  For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment;


G.  Verse 4.  These locusts that have been unleashed have a command given them, not to do what they want to do, but they will do what they are they are designed to do.  They are not designed to hurt the grass or anything green.  They are there to hurt the people who have not the seal of God in their foreheads.  This means that there are still people that are sealed on this earth at that time.  People that are saved and yet not yet martyred.


The destructive abilities of the locusts are specifically limited by the permission of God. 


H.  These locusts are there to torment men.  There are scorpions out west of a very large variety that can actually be fatal to some if stung but here in South Carolina, we have a smaller species whose stings are very painful but not fatal unless you have a allergy to insect stings or bites. These are sent to torment men for beer to five months and that is a long time.


J.  Verse 6.  Men will desire death but cannot die.  They can neither be killed or kill themselves.  I find this interesting that they think death is far better than living.  Evolution teaches that when you die everything ceases to exist.  Like a an animal that has no soul, you just go to sleep and cease to exist, but that is not the case.  It is a fool's way of thinking!  When you die without Christ, Hell awaits.  “All this and hell too!”  Then there is the Lake of fire for an eternity.  I call this leaping out of the frying pan and into the fire.  These individuals want nothing to do with God.  They just want to put an end to their suffering here on earth.  They want the suffering to stop but do not want the God who can stop it.


Job 3:20-22  Wherefore is light given to him that is in misery, and life unto the bitter in soul;  (21)  Which long for death, but it cometh not; and dig for it more than for hid treasures;  (22)  Which rejoice exceedingly, and are glad, when they can find the grave?


K.  Verses 7-10.  In verses 7 through 9 we found a description of these creatures that God has created for a special time and use.


Verse 7.  Like unto horses prepared for battle.  In war, horses were powerful instruments of war.  Swift to run and powerful to stop.  This speaks of readiness to fight.  Crowns on their heads speaks of the authority to rule.  Power and authority over mankind.  Mankind does not want God to rule so He will give them devilish creatures to rule them.  The Gold speaks of authority given by God.  They are created by God for this purpose. 


Verse 8.  Their faces as the faces of men but their hair was that of a woman.  This speaks of shame.  A haunting affect!  These will not be subject to God’s authority, so we find an unnatural ruling.  These locusts cannot be ruled by man as their authority is given by God and can only be revoked by God.  Their teeth will be like the teeth of Lions.  Lions are carnivorous animals of great power.  They have huge teeth, and those teeth are able to rip and to tear, giving them a fearful look.  


Verse 9.  They had breastplates to protect their vitals so they cannot be either hurt of killed.  Man will have no power over them, and the sound of their wings is a frightful one.  As chariots running to battle.  They are coming and nothing can be done to stop them.  that means that you can't hurt them as the breastplates of iron these you can't perish them you can't shoot one of 'em you can't stab 'em you can't do anything because they are protected from mankind in the sound of their wing as the sound of chair it's in many horses run to battle great noise I mean multitudes of these things flying together create a lot of noise and therefore they create a lot of fear you know there coming and there's not a thing you can do about it


Verse 10.  Scorpions will normally grab their prey and hold their prey down with their legs while they bring that tail over the back and sting them.  There is no power over them and no place to hide from them.  No relief from their pain.


L.  Verse 11.  Special angels are found in the Bible and this is one of them.  The king of the locust/scorpion creatures is called Abaddon in Hebrew or The Destroying Angel and Apollyon in the Greek, a destroyer.  The Angel of Destruction.  Throughout the Bible, we have seen angels that God has sent to destroy men.  Though some would say that this angel was a fallen angel, I believe that he is one of God’s special angels who guards the bottomless pit where men suffer and will command the locusts that will cause men to suffer.


2 Kings 19:35  And it came to pass that night, that the angel of the LORD went out, and smote in the camp of the Assyrians an hundred fourscore and five thousand: and when they arose early in the morning, behold, they were all dead corpses.


1 Chronicles 21:15  And God sent an angel unto Jerusalem to destroy it: and as he was destroying, the LORD beheld, and he repented him of the evil, and said to the angel that destroyed, It is enough, stay now thine hand. And the angel of the LORD stood by the threshingfloor of Ornan the Jebusite.


M.  Verse 12.  One woe is now past but the world will know the other two woes well!

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