The 7-Seal Judgments

Slide_15a_-_Lesser_of_70th_Week_Timeline

The Bible reveals that Jesus Christ as being the “Lamb of God” (John 1:29) is the only man in heaven, earth or under the earth who is worthy to open the 7-seals of this book of judgments:

And I saw a strong angel proclaiming with a loud voice, Who is worthy to open the book [of Tribulation judgments], and to loose the seals thereof? 3 And no man in heaven, nor in earth, neither under the earth, was able to open the book, neither to look thereon. 4 And I wept much, because no man was found worthy to open and to read the book, neither to look thereon. 5 And one of the elders saith unto me, Weep not: behold, the Lion of the tribe of Juda, the Root of David, hath prevailed to open the book, and to loose the seven seals thereof."

6 "And I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of the throne and of the four beasts, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as it had been slain [i.e. Jesus Christ - John 1:29], having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth. 7 And he [Jesus] came and took the book out of the right hand of him [God the Father] that sat upon the throne.” (Rev 5:2-7)

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The Bible reveals there are seven distinct seals opened by Christ, as described below:

  1. And I saw when the Lamb opened [the first] one of the seals, and I heard, as it were the noise of thunder, one of the four beasts saying, Come and see. 2 And I saw, and behold a white horse [and its rider – the Antichrist]: and he that sat on him had a bow [or weapon of war]; and a crown [or authority from heaven] was given unto him: and he went forth conquering, and to conquer. “ (Rev 6:1-2)

    Antichrist—the White Horse Rider

    This rider of a white horse is not to be confused with the white horse rider of Rev. 19:11-21. This one is symbolic; the other literal.  This one represents Antichrist; the other is Christ in person. 

    This one symbolizes a series of terrible events on earth; the one in Rev. 19:11-21 ends these events.  Furthermore, this white horse rider is not a symbol of a great revival of the Word of God, as some teach from Habakkuk 3:8-9, which is in the past tense and refers to God leading Israel out of Egypt.  This rider is future and will be the first of 62 post-rapture events of Daniel's 70th week.

  2. And when he had opened the second seal, I heard the second beast say, Come and see. 4 And there went out another horse that was red [and its rider]: and power [or authority from heaven] was given to him that sat thereon to take peace from the earth [meaning war everywhere where red blood is shed], and that they should kill one another: and there was given unto him a great sword [that millions of people should die].” (Rev 6:3-4)

    This is a symbol of human blood being shed through wars of the first two seals.

  3. And when he had opened the third seal, I heard the third beast say, Come and see. And I beheld, and lo a black horse [and its rider]; and he that sat on him had a pair of balances in his hand [with which to ration food – Lam 4:9]. 6 And I heard a voice in the midst of the four beasts say, A measure a of wheat for a penny, and three measures of barley for a penny; and see thou hurt not the oil and the wine.” (Rev 6:5-6)

    This is a symbol of famine which is the result of the conquest and wars of the first two seals (compare with Lam 4:4-8; Matthew 24:7).

  4. And when he had opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth beast say, Come and see. 8 And I looked, and behold a pale horse [and its rider]: and his name that sat on him was Death, and Hell followed with him. And power [or authority from heaven] was given unto them over the fourth part of the earth, to kill with sword, and with hunger, and with death, and with the [wild and domestic] beasts of the earth.” (Rev 6:7-8)

    The Tribulation is Not Worldwide:

    1.     The first 4 seals apply only to a 4th part of the earth (Rev. 6:8).
    2.     The martyrdom of the saints in Rev. 6:9-11 is inside Antichrist's territory where the great whore of Rev. 17 dominates the 10 kings.
    3.     The 144,000 Jews of Rev. 7:1-8 are sealed from the nation of Israel in Palestine, for the woman (national Israel) brings forth the man-child (Rev. 12:2). Since the nation is not made up of all the Jews still scattered, then the whole prophecy centers around Palestine.
    4.     The great tribulation saints of Rev. 7:9-17 are martyred only in that part of the earth where the tribulation will be.
    5.     The 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th trumpets are over only a third part of the earth (Rev. 8:7-12)
    6.     The 6th trumpet causes only a third part of mankind to be killed (Rev. 9:18).
    7.     Jerusalem and Israel are the ones affected in the troubles of Rev. 11:1-13; Rev. 12:1-17.
    8.     The Antichrist rule will be only over the 10 kingdoms - preseumably of the old Roman Empire territory.
    9.     The events of Rev. 14:8-20 concern Babylon, beast worshipers, martyrs, and Armageddon in Palestine.
    10.   The vial judgments are also limited to the kingdom of Antichrist (Rev. 16:2,10,12; Rev. 18:1-24). Even the second coming is local (Zech. 14:1-5; Rev. 19:11-21). Christ will be reigning in Jerusalem possibly before many people in the isolated parts of the earth will know He is on earth (Isa 2:2-4; Isa 52:7; Isa 66:19-21; Zech 8:23).

  5. And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them [the foolish virgins killed by beheading - Matt 10:28] that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony [of Jesus Christ as their Lord] which they held: 10 And they [as souls] cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth? 11 And white robes [representing ‘their personal righteousness’] were given unto every one of them; and it was said unto them, that they should rest yet for a little season, until their fellowservants [who die after them] also and their brethren, that should be killed as they were [Rev 7:13-17], should be fulfilled.” (Rev 6:9-11)

    "souls of them that were slain": These people will be saved after the resurrection of both the dead and those alive in Christ—commencing at the New Testament's Abel (Matt 23:35) to those living in these days at the Rapture in Rev. 4:1.  Such people will be martyred between the Rapture and the 5th seal during the first 3 1/2 years of Daniel's 70th week, a period which takes in all the events of the Seals and first 6 Trumpets.  They will be martyred by the Great Whore of Rev. 17:1-7 Rev 17:8-18.

  6. And I beheld when he had opened the sixth seal, and, lo, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became as blood; 13 And the stars of heaven fell unto the earth [Isa 24:20-23], even as a fig tree casteth her untimely figs, when she is shaken of a mighty wind. 14 And the heaven departed as a scroll when it is rolled together; and every mountain and island were moved out of their places. 15 And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every free man, hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains; 16 And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb: 17 For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?” (Rev 6:12-17)

    Four Earthquakes in Daniel's Seventieth Week

    1.    Under the 6th seal in the first 3 1/2 years of the 70th week (Rev. 6:12)
    2.    Between the 7th seal and the first trumpet in the first 3 1/2 years (Rev. 8:5)
    3.    Under the 7th trumpet in the middle of the week (Rev. 11:19)
    4.    Under the 7th vial at the end of the week (Rev. 11:13; Rev. 16:19; Zech. 14:4-8)

    Jesus predicted many earthquakes for the last days as a sign of His Second Coming (Matt 24:7; Mark 13:8; Luke 21:11). 

    Several are mentioned in Biblical history (Amos 1:1; Zech. 14:5; Matt 8:24; Matt 27:51; Matt 28:2; Acts 16:25).  The greatest earthquake of all will take place at the end of the Millennium (Haggai 2:6-7,21-22; Heb 12:25-29; 2 Peter 3:10-13; Rev. 20:11).  This will result in the renovation of the heavens and earth, making the third perfect earth, and the end of the earth's second sinful career (Rev. 21-22; Isa 66:22-24).

    "stars of heaven fell unto the earth": Five times the stars will become affected, corresponding with the sun above, but only twice are they spoken of as falling to the earth:  first, during the 6th seal (Rev. 6:13); second, at the coming of Christ immediately after the tribulation (Matthew 24:29-31).  There will be several years between the two events.  This does not refer to true stars, all of which are much bigger than our earth, but to meteors or shooting stars.

    "heaven departed as a scroll when it is rolled together": This does not mean the extinction of the heavens any more than it does in Rev. 20:11 and Rev. 21:1, for they are seen many times after this (Rev. 8:1,10,13; Rev. 9:1; etc.).

    "every mountain and island were moved out of their places": This does not mean the extinction of the islands and mountains, for several years later they are again affected by another great earthquake (Rev. 16:20).  The earth abideth forever (Ecc 1:4; Psalm 1:4-5)

  7. And when he had opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven about the space of half an hour.” (Rev 8:1)

    This is as literal as stated—silence in heaven about half an hour.  The reason for silence is not stated.
     

It is believed the Sixth Seal will be opened either at the end of the Tribulation period or at the 1,335th day after the mid-Tribulation point - which corresponds with the Second Coming of Christ.

Quite a number of my comments above have been taken from the notes of the Dake Annoted Bible commentary.