Rev. 6:1 "And I saw when the Lamb opened one of the seals, and I heard, as it were the noise of thunder, one of the four beasts saying, Come and see.
Rev. 6:2 "And I saw, and behold, a white horse: and he that sat on him had a bow; and a crown was given unto him: and he went forth conquering, and to conquer.
First I want you to notice that the FIRST beast said to John, Come and see. And we know from Revelation 4:7 that the first beast was like a LION. I am not sure if there is any significance of this, but the pattern follows for the opening of the first four seals, one of each of the FOUR beasts for each of the first FOUR seals.
In other words, when the second seal is opened we see the SECOND beast say to John COME and SEE. And then the THIRD beast for the third seal and the FOURTH beast for the fourth seal. I we expound on this more in a moment. But first let us finish looking at the first seal.
The first thing John saw when the first seal was opened was a WHITE horse. Now as for the white horse and he that sat on him with a bow I agree with others who speculate that this white horse represents a time of WAR. I will also add that the color WHITE usually represents RIGHTEOUS, so this war might be considered by some to be a RIGHTEOUS war, in that, it is a war that is JUSTIFIED to be waged. Like as in a war to DEFEND an innocent people or nation. When Jesus returns to judge and make war it is a righteous thing with God to execute vengeance upon the ungodly.
Or this war may be waged AGAINST those who are truly RIGHTEOUS and INNOCENT upon the earth by another in the name of THEIR god where they think that they are doing what the true God wants them to do. Again there is nothing concrete and solid just from this verse ALONE so it is all speculation, but for sure the word "conquering" in this verse signifies some kind of overcoming or subduing.
Now when we compare scripture with scripture and we interpret these first four seals that the church and even the world has come to call the FOUR HORSEMAN of the Apocalypse, then we can see that these first four seals have already been OPENED in HISTORY where the fourth seal is just now beginning to be opened and is not yet fully opened. In other words, the fourth seal is very near to be opened.
Initially I believe that the first six seals are opened during the time of great tribulation, which was spoken by Daniel and Jesus. In other words at first I was seeing that ALL of the first SIX seals would be opened DURING the final or last 3 1/2 years of GREAT tribulation.
But then after a long debate with one of my readers who wrote to me trying ever which way he could to convince me of a rapture BEFORE the great tribulation I began to see that the "beginning of sorrows" was NOT confined to just a 3 1/2 year period of time right before the 3 1/2 years of great tribulation that the church has come to call the first half of the seventieth week of Daniel.
If you remember Jesus tells us in Matthew chapter 24 that there would be wars and rumors of war, but the end was not yet. Jesus went on to teach us about the abomination of desolation spoken of by the prophet Daniel. And when we see this abomination of desolation then there would be great tribulation such as has never been before on the earth nor shall ever be again. Jesus also tells us in that same chapter of Matthew that he will COME AGAIN, which is when he comes to rapture us, the church, immediately AFTER this time of great tribulation. Then Jesus will execute the WRATH of God upon the world and the disobedient to the gospel when the seventh seal will be opened, which is the wrath of God. For a complete and deeper understanding of the time of the rapture please read the study called "THE GREAT TRIBULATION", and "WHEN IS THE RAPTURE?". I will expound more on the seals and what I believe they mean after we finish covering the first six seals here in Revelation chapter 6.
Rev. 6:3 " And when he had opened the second seal, I heard the second beast say, Come and see.
Rev. 6:4 " And there went out another horse that was red: and power was given him that sat thereon to take peace from the earth, and that they should kill one another: and there was given unto him a sword."
Jesus also spoke of the nations rising against nations, which some teach to mean nationalities against nationalities, or in other words racial wars or conflicts. BOTH can be seen as correct interpretations as you will soon see. The color RED could mean much bloodshed. Whatever the meaning of the red horse it is clear that PEACE will be taken from the earth. And keep in mind that it is the translators who chose to use the English word "earth", but in truth this Greek word also mean LAND. And land can mean a REGION of the earth and not the whole earth.
The SECOND beast was described in Revelation 4:7 was like a CALF. The literal translation reads like unto cattle. So an animal like a cow or a bull. This brings to remembrance the IDOL of the golden CALF made by the children of Israel in Exodus chapter 32. Please know and understand that not ALL of Israel IS Israel. If you remember Abraham had TWO sons and the Bible teaches us that there is the seed of Issac and the seed of Ishmael. And the descendants of BOTH Issac and Ishmael worshiped IDOLS, but God CHOSE the seed of Issac to inherit the birth right of Abraham. So many in the church are SEEING that the religion of ISLAM is the MARK of the beast system and that an Islamic prophet will arise out of the land or the region of Syria to lead a united Islamic caliphate to war against Israel.
To Christians Islam is a FALSE religion, but to Muslims it is the only true religion. But since we are Christians and use the Bible as the only true word of Almighty God we see Islam as a FALSE CHRIST as false religion claiming to be the only true religion. Islam is LIKE worshiping the CALF, which is an IDOL to the one true God, but to Muslims they sincerely believe that they are worshiping to true God by killing the Christians and the Jews in the name of Allah. Again more on this in a moment after we finish looking at the first six seals.
Rev. 6:5 " 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 he that sat on him had a pair of balances in his hand."
Rev. 6:6 " And I heard a voice in the midst of the four beasts say, A measure of wheat for a penny, and three measures of barley for a penny; and see you hurt not the oil and the wine."
This time John hears a voice coming from the midst of the four beast, which most likely is the voice of God the Father, Jesus or one of the 24 elders.
Jesus said that there would be famines during this time of the beginnings of sorrows, so the balances could represent the careful weighing and rationing of food for a price that would be equal to a days wages. We are also told by this voice NOT to hurt the oil or the wine. Now oil and wine is often a type of the Holy Spirit of God, so this may be a reference to the PROTECTION of the saints of God, who are filled with the Holy Spirit of God. Again these are just speculations.
What seems to be certain is a time of FAMINE. Also two things are NOT to be hurt during this period of time when the THIRD seal is opened. Now one thing that I am seeing is that during this period of HISTORY these two things will not be hurt by WAR, as in, all out war to totally destroy and wipe out these two things. So then, I myself am seeing these two things, the oil and the wine, as being symbolic of the Jews and the Christians. The oil being symbolic of OLIVE oil and the wine being symbolic of the NEW wine of the Holy Spirit.
Now with any span of history when it comes to WAR there is a beginning to war and and ending of war where there is not an "all out" war right from the start. And nor is the ending of all out war come to and end abruptly all at once. With that being said I am seeing that we are IN the THIRD seal right now where the antichrist system is coming in PEACEABLY and by some not even being noticed. And before the fourth seal is FULLY opened we are NOW seeing a RISE in the hostility of this beast system toward the oil and the wine or toward the Jews and the Christians.
The description of the THIRD beast is that of a MAN. This speaks to me of a time of PEACE in relation to the antchrist system and the oil and the wine. Once you see that the antichrist system is the Islamic Muslim Ottoman empire that was wounded by the sword and is now rising again, but is still claiming to be a religion of PEACE, then you will see that after the time that Islam was wounded to death by the sword during the Christian crusades that there was no wars between Muslims and God's people the Jews and the Christians, as in, major all out wars between the Muslims and God's people to wipe the Jews and the Christians off the face of the earth. Again I will put all this together shortly, but let us finish taking a look at the first six seals.
Rev. 6:7 " And when he had opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth beast saying, Come and see.
Rev. 6:8 " And I looked, and behold a pale horse: and his name that sat on him was Death, and Hell followed with him. And power was given unto him over the forth part of the earth, to kill with the sword, and with hunger, and with the beasts of the earth.
I believe the rider of this horse is the antichrist himself, and power is given unto him from Satan to make what I call all out war against the saints of God and God's chosen people Israel and slay many of them with the sword. I say Satan is the one who gives the rider of the fourth horse power, because of the wording, and HELL followed WITH him. The word hell means the grave, but it is also known as the pit where Satan is also the king of the underworld.
Also we are told elsewhere in Revelation 13 that Satan is the one who gives power to the antichrist beast system and the false prophet, which we will see later on in this study as being the religion of Islam and the prophet that is prophesied in the religion of Islam to lead Muslims against their sworn enemies, namely anyone who is NOT a Muslim, but primarily the Jews and the Christians.
But in truth it is God who is allowing this fourth horseman to have power or AUTHORITY one one fourth of the earth or land. This mean that the resurrected Islamic Muslim empire will be the dominate controlling power over 1/4 of the land mass of the earth. Now some Christians wrongly interpret this verse to mean the 1/4 of the entire earths population will be killed by this fourth horseman, which most all Christians agree is the antichrist, the man of sin, the son of perdition.
Now I myself believe that the opening of the fourth seal is the ABOMINATION of desolation, which actually BEGINS the last 3 1/2 years of GREAT tribulation, which the church will go through. It is also called the time of Jacobs trouble, and it is the time when the fullness of the GENTILES be come in, meaning that no, not one more Gentiles will turn to Jesus BEFORE the rapture of the church. Now one thing that some Christians have not yet seen is that this time of GREAT tribulation actually extends over into the time of God's WRATH.
Remember that Jesus said in Matthew 24 that immediately after the "tribulation of those days" and not immediately after the great tribulation of those days, which would then make the wrath of God nothing compared to the 3 1/2 years of great tribulation. And we know that the WRATH of God is much more fierce than the 3 1/2 years of great tribulation. So in this SENSE both the 3 1/2 years of great tribulation and the WRATH of God is the time as such that has never been nor ever shall be again. I still stand firm in my belief that the 3 1/2 years of great tribulation is NOT the WRATH of God meaning that there will be a TIME of great tribulation measured out by God to be exactly 1260 prophetic days or 3 1/2 prophetic years of 360 days and also a time FOLLOWING the tribulation of THOSE PARTICULAR days with FAR MORE intense great tribulation called the WRATH of God being poured out upon the world, to which we, the church, are NOT appointed. if so be we OBEY the GOSPEL of Jesus Christ unto the end.
So then, the FOURTH seal seems to cover the 3 1/2 years of great tribulation where the FIFTH seal is included in this last 3 1/2 years of great tribulation showing us the saints in heaven who were killed for the testimony of Jesus and the word of God. The FOURTH beast before the throne of God was described in Revelation 4:7 as flying EAGLE. When we read Daniel 7:4 we see a beast like a LION with EAGLES wings, which by the way is the symbol used by ancient Babylon that is now modern day Iraq.
"The FIRST was like a LION, and had eagle's wings: I beheld till the wings thereof were plucked, and it was lifted up from the earth, and made stand upon the feet as a MAN, and a MAN's heart was given to it."
In other words, Islam rose up in the region where the kingdom of Babylon once reigned. At first Islam used WORDS to spread it's religion as a DECEITFUL BOW and then progressed to the second stage, which is the second seal. In this period of history Muslims began to spread the IDOLATRY religion of Islam using the SWORD killing those who would not convert to Islam. In the third seal we see the WINGS clip from the LION and this beast system was made to stand up like a MAN and was given a MAN's heart. To say this another way this first beast was wounded with the SWORD unto death. The Christians crusades subdued the Muslims, but did do completely wipe out every last Muslim.
Then toward the end of this period of history covering the third horseman we are seeing a RISING again of the religion of Islam. The deadly wound has been healed and the EAGLES wings are back flying swiftly across the land growing faster than any other religion. Now Islam is coming in PEACEABLY claiming it is a religion of PEACE. But all that is slowly changing as more and more area of the earth is becoming dominated by Muslims by shear growth in population. When the FOURTH seal is opened this Islamic caliphate will be united to make all out war with Israel, which is what Luke teaches us is the abomination of desolation to make Jerusalem desolate. And during the 3 1/2 years of the fourth seal Christians will be killed as well as the Jews. This is what we see in the FIFTH seal.
Further on in the book of Revelation we see the FALL of Babylon.
Rev. 6:9 " And when he opened the fifth seal, I saw under the alter of the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony for which they held:
Rev.6:10 "And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, Holy and true, do you not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?
Rev. 6:11 " And white robes were given unto every one of them: and it was said unto them that they should rest yet for a little season, until their fellow servants also and their brethren, that they should be killed as they were, should be fulfilled."
I want you to notice two groups of people here; the fellow servants and the brethren. In verse nine we see that there were those that were slain for the WORD of God AND those who were slain for their TESTIMONY, which we know from Revelation 12:17 is the testimony of Jesus that they held, again signifying two groups. I will say more on this later, but as you read the rest of the book of Revelation please pay attention to be looking for these two different groups of people, which I personally believe are the TWO witnesses, the ONLY two groups of people in all the earth who stand for the ONE TRUE God. The one witness of God are the Jews that are God's CHOSEN people, who are pointed out by the phrases in the book of Revelation, "the servants of God", "the song of Moses" and the servant who "keep the WORD of God". The second witness is the church who have the "testimony of Jesus".
We also see in this verse that many more Christians and Jews are killed because they believe in the one true God. In other words, during this last 3 1/2 years of great tribulation there will rise a great HATRED toward the Jews and the Christians and both of these witnesses, who stand up for the one true God will be killed for their FAITH. They are and will be killed for no other reason other than they will not deny their faith in God, and that is why they will be persecuted and slain.
Rev. 6:12 "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;"
Rev. 6:13 "And the stars of heaven fell unto the earth, even as a fig casts her figs, when she is shaken of a mighty wind."
Rev. 6:14 "And the heaven departed as a scroll when it is rolled together; and every mountain and island were moved out of there places.
Rev. 6:15 " And the kings of the earth, and great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and mighty men, and every bondman, and every free man, hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains;
Rev. 6:16 "And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sits on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb:
Rev. 6:17 "For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?"
The sixth seal was for me one of the keys that opened up the book of Revelation and HOW to read this book filled with symbolic language and yet having much literal language as well. Once I saw that the rapture before the great tribulation was a false teaching by when the resurrection takes place I then began to see the pattern of SIX then something happens right before the SEVENTH. As I explain this SIXTH seal you too will begin to see this pattern of the book of revelation repeating itself.
Let me begin by explaining verse 17 which says, for the great day of his WRATH is come, and who SHALL BE ABLE to stand? These words teach us that the WRATH of God is just about ready to be poured out. In other words, the wrath of God is being ANNOUNCED.
The opening of the SIXTH seal is showing us the SIGNS of the second coming of Jesus, which is WHEN Jesus will execute or pour out the WRATH of God. Now I do not know one Christian who disagrees that the SECOND coming is WHEN Jesus comes to execute the WRATH of Almighty God. Now these SIGNS in the SUN, MOON, and STARS will appear and be seen just prior to the pouring out of God's WRATH upon the ungodly and disobedient. Let us compare the signs with what Jesus says in Matthew 24:29-31 with these same sign here in the opening of teh SIXTH seal.
"Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the SUN be darkened, and the MOON shall not give her light, and the STARS shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be SHAKEN:
30. And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.
31. And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other."
Scroll back up or get your own Bible out and read Revelation 6:12-14 again and take notice of the SIGNS of the sun, moon, stars and the shaking of the earth. These are the SAME signs found in Matthew 24:29-31, which every Christian agrees is the SECOND coming of Jesus. Now in the passage of scripture Jesus himself states in simplicity that these signs in the SUN, MOON, and STARS will appear IMMEDIATELY AFTER the time of great tribulation. This means that at least SOME of the first SIX seals cover the time of the GREAT tribulation.
Jesus also tells of these SAME signs in Luke 21:25-28 and we see that they take place just prior to the second coming of the Lord to pour out the WRATH of God.
"And there shall be SIGNS in the SUN, and in the MOON, and in the STARS, and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity, the sea and the waves roaring.
26. The hearts of men failing them for FEAR, and for looking after those things which ARE COMING on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.
27. And then shall they SEE the Son of man COMING in a cloud with power and great glory.
28. And when you see these things BEGIN to come to pass, then lift up your hears; for your redemption draws nigh."
So all these SIGNS occur just before the RAPTURE of the church AT the SECOND coming of Jesus. These signs are the initial setting in motion of the WRATH of God. Please read the study entitled "THE SECOND COMING OF JESUS" for a deeper understanding of these signs and more.
First notice here that Jesus told us that men's hearts shall fail them, because of their FEAR of the things that ARE coming upon the earth. I believe that the HEART that Jesus is speaking of is BOTH the physical organ, the heart, where people are having "heart attacks" from FEAR, and also the spirit of man, the heart or the inner man will fail or grow faint and Christians will lose there FAITH that their Lord is even coming back to save them. Read Luke 18:8,
"...Nevertheless when the Son of man comes, shall he FIND FAITH on the earth."
Take heed dear child of God, lest these SIGNS right before Jesus comes back for the church are going to be so "earth shaking" of very fearful things that will they will shake your very FAITH if you are nor aware that they must take place BEFORE Jesus comes again for the church. Those that teach the PRE-tribulation and MID-tribulation view are leading Christians to believe that they are not going to be here when these signs occur. However, the WHOLE word of God does NOT teach this. Please read all the studies relating to the great tribulation, the second coming of Jesus and "THE WRATH OF GOD VERSES THE GREAT TRIBULATION".
Now look at Revelation 6:15-17 which shows the FEAR of mankind that dwells upon the earth, saying, let the rocks and mountains fall on us and HIDE us from the WRATH of God and the Lamb that is about to come upon us. Remember they shall SEE Jesus coming in a cloud of great glory, and they will also see the great vast army of saints and angels that Jesus brings with him. Behold he comes with ten thousands of his saints. This is found in Jude 1:14,15. And he comes with his angels in FLAMING fire taking VENGEANCE upon then that know not God AND on the disobedient to the GOSPEL, which is speaking of Christians living is SIN at his coming. This is found in 2 Thessalonians 1:6-10.
Let me now summarize the first SIX seals. First notice the PATTERN where the FIRST SIX seals or opened one right after the other, but the SEVENTH is NOT opened until AFTER something happens. In chapter 7 we will see WHAT that something is BEFORE the SEVENTH seal is opened. I want you to remember this patter of SIX and THEN comes the SEVENTH, because it is repeated in the seven trumpets and in the seven vials. More on this later when we get to the seven trumpets and then again when we get to the seven vials.
Next I want you to consider that the beginnings of sorrows extends from the early church all the way up to the abomination of desolation rather than dogmatically demanding that the beginnings of sorrows is only a 3 1/2 year period called the first half of the seventieth week of Daniel. Once you see this, then you should be able to see that the first SIX seals cover a much wider span of time than just 7 years right before the second coming of Jesus.
With this in mind I want you to now consider The rise and FALL of the Islamic Muslim Ottoman empire, which was wounded to death by the SWORD of the Christian crusades. Remember the WHITE horse went forth conquering and to conquer. To me this speaks of the ones where were conquering were NOT finished with what they were intending to conquer.
So then, the white horse to me is NOT Jesus, nor the Christians of the crusades, but rather the opening of the first seal is the beginning of the Muslims using the DECEITFUL BOW or spreading Islam in the name of Allah. In other words, the white horse is symbolic for a "RELIGIOUS" system rising up in the land teaching against Christianity and the religion of the Jews claiming that they are the one true religion. Now every religion particularly the religion of Islam sincerely believe that their god is the one true god and thus they believe that they ALONE are the ANOINTED of God. To say this another way the religion of Islam is a FALSE Christ proclaiming that Islam is the only way to Allah. Jesus rides a WHITE horse when he returns and the antichrist system rides a WHITE horse being a FALSE Christ.
Also they went out at first conquering with the bow. What does the bow mean other than war, if it has any other meaning? First of all conquering and to conquer also means to subdue and to overcome. Then we read a prophecy of Israel speaking raging WORDS and God likens their words to a DECEITFUL BOW. Please read Hosea 7:16.
"They return, but not to the most High: they are LIKE a DECEITFUL BOW: their princes shall fall by the sword for (or because OF) the rage of their TONGUE: this shall be their derision in the land of Egypt."
Also the CROWN that was given to this first rider is Islam growing to become the great Islamic Ottoman Empire.
This brings us to the seventh chapter of the book of Revelation. Again I want you to notice that ONLY the first six seals have been opened up to this point in time and we see the WRATH of God being announced in the opening of the SIXTH seal. The seventh and final seal has yet to be opened and will not be opened UNTIL the eighth chapter. So what happens BETWEEN the opening of the sixth seal and the opening of the seventh seal? You will soon find out what will take place in chapter seven as we continue this verse by verse study in the book of Revelation by clicking on the link CHAPTER 7 and reading this next chapter.