Saturday, May 16, 2020

Wormwood and Revelation Trumpets 1-4

Wormwood and the Revelation Trumpets 1-4


Blessed is he that reads, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand. (Revelation 1:3 AKJV)

The Apostle John was confined to an island by the leaders of his time. He wrote the Book of Revelation during his confinement. It begins with a blessing for those who hear and “keep” the things written within this book. The Greek word tereo  translated “keep” means to “attend to carefully.” That is what we are doing here today.

But that when the days come when the trumpet call of the seventh angel is about to be sounded, then God’s mystery (His secret design, His hidden purpose), as He had announced the glad tidings to His servants the prophets, should be fulfilled (accomplished, completed). (Revelation 10:7 AMPC)

The Greek word for mystery is mysterion and it means “a hidden or secret thing, not obvious to the understanding.” Only in His time, by His spirit can we understand them.  It isn’t necessary or even possible to understand all of what is written in Revelation, until God reveals it or possibly while it is happening.

We can look at many of the prophecies in this book and say “perhaps it means” this or that, but in many cases it will be a “theory” until God brings the truth. If our theory differs from yours, I hope you will agree to disagree until God’s truth comes.

7th Seal


We have looked at the seals that are to be broken by the Lamb of God. The seventh seal contains seven trumpets.

And when he had opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven about the space of half an hour. And I saw the seven angels which stood before God; and to them were given seven trumpets. (Revelation 8:1-2  AKJV)

A trumpet heralds something is coming, in this case, it is the wrath of God. As we look at the trumpets, we need to remember that these are “mysteries” of God. After this an angel comes and places the prayers of the saints and incense before the Throne of God on a golden altar (Revelation 8:1-4). God’s response is this:

And the angel took the censer, and filled it with fire of the altar, and cast it into the earth: and there were voices, and thunder, and lightning, and an earthquake. (Revelation 8:5 AKJV)

Before the first trumpet is sounded this occurs. We really have no definite indication what “voices, thunder and lightning” represents. However, looking at the Greek words may help:

      Voices: phone - besides actual speech it can mean a sound, a tone
      Thunder: bronte - like a roar
      Lighting: astrape - of the gleam of a lamp or actual lightening

The definitions seem straightforward, but some of these words have been used together by John before:

Then there came a voice out of heaven saying, I have already glorified it, and I will glorify it again. The crowd of bystanders heard the sound and said that it had thundered; others said, An angel has spoken to Him! (John:12:28-29 AKJV)

This shows that that voices can come out of the spiritual realm and to some it can sound unclear like thunder to those not able to hear from God. This particular combination of words occurs other times in the Book of Revelation: as the last trumpet sounds (Revelation 11:19) and the last vial of wrath is poured out (Revelation 16:18). We will look at these in greater detail when we discuss the rapture.

The one conclusion that we can draw from these facts is that between each of the sets of events (seals, trumpets, vials) God is going to release something upon the earth with great power.

1st Trumpet


The first angel sounded, and there followed hail and fire mingled with blood and they were cast on the earth: and the third part of trees was burnt up, and all green grass was burnt up. (Revelation 8:7 AKJV)

The first trumpet releases something from Heaven which impacts the earth. In whichever way this appears, it is the effect that we will recognize. 

      ⅓ of the trees are burned
      all the grass is destroyed

2nd Trumpet


And the second angel sounded, and as it were a great mountain burning with fire was cast into the sea: and the third part of the sea became blood; And the third part of the creatures which were in the sea, and had life, died; and the third part of the ships were destroyed. (Revelation 8:8-9 AKJV)

A “great mountain burning with fire cast into the sea” is most likely a meteor hitting the earth. If we re-examine the 2nd trumpet in light of this one, the earlier trumpet could be small meteorites which hit before the large one. The effects of the second trumpet:

      ⅓ of the sea life dies
      ⅓ of all ships are destroyed

3rd Trumpet


And the third angel sounded, and there fell a great star from heaven, burning as it were a lamp, and it fell on the third part of the rivers, and on the fountains of waters; And the name of the star is called Wormwood: and the third part of the waters became wormwood; and many men died of the waters, because they were made bitter. (Revelation 8:10-11 AKJV)

Going back to the original language will help us understand these scriptures:

      Star: aster - the same one defined elsewhere as an angel (Revelation 1:20)
      Burning: kaio - the writer of this book also used this word to describe John the Baptist; a light to show the way (John 5:35)
      Lamp: lampas - implied to mean one fed by oil. This same word is used to speak in the parable of the ten virgins where the oil was the Holy Spirit.
      Fell: pipto - to descend from a higher place to a lower. Used with aster to describe Satan and his minions being kicked out of Heaven (Revelation 1:20).
      Wormwood: apsinthion - at the time this was written, wormwood was a bitter, poisonous herb a lot like hemlock.

By looking at the original language we can see that Wormwood may be the name or the job of an angel which carries an anointing from God to cause great harm. The effect seen are:

      ⅓ of all rivers and springs become “bitter” or poisonous

We may not know exactly what happens however, there are a few possibilities that come to mind.

  1. If several nuclear power plants melt down like Chernobyl, the fallout may turn many waters poisonous. The radiation would have no taste and could kill many people.
  2. Scientists claim that the meteorite which hits in the prior trumpet have poison the ocean. The impact in the ocean vaporizes a lot of this poisoned water which rains down poisoning rivers and springs.
  3. The angel may release something from the spiritual realm which we don’t even see.

Besides these three, God may do something completely unexpected. The only fact is that one third of all rivers and springs will be poisoned.

4th Trumpet


And the fourth angel sounded, and the third part of the sun was smitten, and the third part of the moon, and the third part of the stars; so as the third part of them was darkened, and the day shone not for a third part of it, and the night likewise. (Revelation 8:12 AKJV)

When the sun, moon and stars are darkened, that most likely indicates debris in the atmosphere from the prior trumpets. Without sunlight on ⅓ of the earth, food production will be greatly affected. There will be much hardship from this trumpet.

Is there anything that could adequately prepare us for these announcements of the coming
wrath of God? If we are listening to God and know His ways we will be able to lean on Him for protection and provision. I can think of no better way to prepare than to strengthen my relationship with my Father who is in Heaven.

In our next article we will discuss the last three trumpets which will make these look like a walk in the park!

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