Revelation (13 of 24) A Little Book And Two Witnesses

10:1-11:14 A Little Book And Two Witnesses

Memory Verse: Revelation 11:3

8:1-13, 9:1-12 The Seventh Seal, Six Trumpets, Two Woes

  • 8:1-13 The seventh seal is opened. It contains seven trumpets of judgement. The first four trumpets destroys one-third of the earth’s ecology: land, sea, water and space. There are three more trumpets following these first four, and each of them are considered a “woe” meaning they are going to be more severe than the previous four.
  • 9:1-21 The fifth trumpet (the first woe) unleashed a demonic attack against unbelievers for five months where men will desire to die as a way of escaping the pain, but they won’t be able to. The sixth trumpet (the second woe) released four demons were to use three plagues (fire, smoke and brimstone) to slay one-third of mankind. After all of these judgements, mankind will still refuse to repent. God continues with more judgements in the coming verses, but before we get to the seventh trumpet, John receives another vision to show us how God is working in between the judgements, offering more good news.

10:1-11 The Little Book Which Is Open

  • 10:1-2a John has a new vision and sees another mighty angel come down from heaven. He describes this angel with symbolism: (1) clothed with a cloud, which symbolizes coming judgement; (2) a rainbow was upon his head, which symbolize God’s mercy; (3) his face was as it were the sun, which symbolizes glory and power; (4) his feet as pillars of fire, which symbolize the presence of God. (5) he had in his hand a little book open, which symbolizes the book that only Jesus was worthy to open.
    Genesis 9:12–16; Exodus 13:21–22; Matthew 24:30; Revelation 5:1; 8:1
  • 10:2b-4 Then John saw the angel set his right foot upon the sea, and his left foot on the earth. The angel cried with a loud voice (like a lion’s roar). All of this represents God’s great authority and power. In response to the angels cry, seven thunders uttered their voices. John started to write what they said, but he heard a voice from heaven that said to him not to write the things they said but to seal them up. Thus we can go no farther in speculating what they said, for God did not want us to know.
  • 10:5-7 The angel proceeds to lift up his hand to heaven and swear by the eternal and sovereign God, the one who lives forever and created the heaven, earth, sea and everything in them, that there will be no more delay, but the mystery of God will be finished as soon as the seventh angel blows the seventh trumpet. This starts the time period of the seventh seal judgment. All the prophecies will finally come true.
    Matthew 24:3; Acts 1:6; Revelation 6:10; 8:3-5
  • 10:8-11 The voice from heaven spoke to John again, and told him to go and take the little book from the angel. John then goes to the angel and ask for the book. The angel gave it to him and tells him to eat it, saying that it will taste sweet as honey but make his belly bitter. John ate the little book and what the angel said happened, sweet then bitter. This represent the bittersweet judgements that are coming. They are sweet because to believers God is justly taking back everything that is His and will victoriously reign. It is bitter because many unbelievers will continue to refuse to repent and be punished. John was to record these events for all people, nations, tongues and kings as a warning of the things to come.

11:1-14 Two Witnesses Who Stand Before The God Of The Earth

  • 11:1-2 Next, John is given a reed like a rod. The angel stood and told John to rise and measure the temple of God, the altar and them that worship therein. This represents God’s ownership and protection of His people. John was also told not to measure the court which is without the temple because it is given unto the Gentiles and the Gentiles will tread under foot the holy city for forty-two months (42 months / 12 months = 3.5 years). Persecution will arise against the people of God for three and a half years.
    Luke 21:24
  • 11:3-4 God will give power to two of His witnesses. These two witnesses will be clothed in sackcloth (humble, sorrow) and prophesy for twelve-hundred and sixty days (1,230 days / 30 days = 42 months / 12 months = 3.5 years). These two are the two olive trees, and the two candlesticks standing before the God of the earth. The bible doesn’t say who these two people are but with the use of the term “witnesses” we know they are two “humans”. Also, because of several reason, many believe these two could be Elijah and Moses (representing the law and the prophets) or Enoch. Their job is clear, to be a witness of the gospel and God’s judgement to the nations.
    Deuteronomy 17:6; Zechariah 4:12–14; Matthew 18:16; 24:14
  • 11:5-6 These two witnesses will be attacked by people trying to hurt them because of the messages they preach. But they have supernatural ways to protect themselves, guaranteeing the message will be proclaimed. This includes the following: (1) They can make fire proceed out of their mouth to devour their enemies. (2) If anyone tries to hurt them, they will be killed in the same manner. (3) They have power to control the weather so that it doesn’t rain. (4) They have power over water to turn it into blood. (5) They have power to smite the earth with all plagues, as often as they want.
  • 11:7-10 When these two witnesses have finished their testimony, the beast that ascends out of the bottomless pit (Antichrist) shall make war against them, overcome them and kill them. Their dead bodies will lay in the street of the great city (Jerusalem—where Jesus died—spiritually called Sodom and Egypt because of its sinfulness). All people, kindreds, tongues and nations will see their dead bodies for three and a half days, not putting them in graves. The people on earth will rejoice, make merry and send gifts one to another because the two prophets that tormented them are dead. Their celebrations represent their ultimate rejection of God.
  • 11:11-14 After three and a half days the Spirit of Life from God entered into them, and they stood upon their feet. This caused a great fear to fall upon those that saw them. Then these two witnesses heard a great voice from heaven telling them to come up to heaven. Then they ascended up to heaven in a cloud while their enemies watched them. The same hour there was a great earthquake, which caused one-tenth of the city to fall, killing seven thousand men. Those who were left in the city were scared, and gave glory to the God of heaven, which is a sign of repentance. The second woe is now over and the third woe is coming quickly.
    Luke 16:31; 17:18–19

Review Questions

  • What does the angel have open in his hands?
  • How does the book taste that John eats? Why?
  • How many witnesses are there?
  • How long will they prophesy?
  • What happens at the end on their time?

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