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The Christian Counter

 
 

 

The Seven Trumpets
Parts 7-9
(The Fifth Trumpet)

 

Begin Text:

We have examined the first four trumpets in Revelation 8. Today we will study the fifth trumpet. Before we begin with Revelation 9, I want to highlight the last verse in chapter 8:

 

Revelation 8:13   As I watched, I heard an eagle that was flying in midair call out in a loud voice: “Woe! Woe! Woe to the inhabitants of the earth, because of the trumpet blasts about to be sounded by the other three angels!”

 

If I translated verse 13 into conversational English, I would write it this way: “The fourth living creature, the one having the face of an eagle, cried out: ‘Because most of the world has rejected God’s gracious offer of salvation, three horrible curses are coming upon the wicked. The next three trumpets shall be worse than the first four! God’s wrath will be imposed on everyone who rejects His offer of salvation, perhaps some will change their minds and be saved.”

 

Two points:

1.   The fifth trumpet does not occur until the advance of the gospel stalls. In other words, when the Two Witnesses, working through the 144,000 have done everything possible to get people to accept Jesus as Lord and Master of their lives, the gospel hits “a brick wall” in terms of progress. When the gospel of Jesus cannot overcome the control and persecution of Babylon and gain any more souls, the fifth trumpet sounds.  I’ll show you from Scripture later on.

 

2.   This may come as a surprise, but at any given time, there are three groups of people on Earth:

 

(1) The saints

(2) the religious wicked

(3) the non-religious wicked

 

Let’s discuss this:

 

(1) God has children in every nation, culture, religion and language. These people are sincere and honest-hearted toward God and man. The saints listen to the Holy Spirit and obey His directives and they live up to all they know and believe to be pleasing to God. Because God has saints in all religious groups, the saints don’t agree on very much at the present time. In a sentence, one could say that most of God’s saints are currently opposed to each other because of their religion, culture, language and racial differences.

 

(2) The term, religious wicked is self-explanatory. These people who are zealous and militant about their religion. They are self-righteous, self seeking and critical of those who do not understand God as they do. Although these people are religious, they have not been born again. Most of the Pharisees in Christ’s day belonged to this group.  (Even though Saul was a Pharisee, he didn’t belong to the religious wicked. Saul was a saint living among the religious wicked! This is why Jesus called him to be a disciple on the road to Damascus. Paul wrote, 1 Timothy 1:13   “Even though I was once a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent man, I was shown mercy because I acted in ignorance and unbelief.” As a Pharisee, Saul’s heart was right and honest toward God, even though his head was totally wrong. At the present time, there are large numbers of people in every religion just like Saul.)

 

(3) The non-religious wicked group is also self-explanatory. These people have no use for religion or God. These people are spiritually dead. They are slaves to the carnal nature. Again, there are some saints living among this group too! They are honest in heart, but totally wrong in their heads!

 

One of the purposes of the Great tribulation is to rescue everyone in these three groups who will trust in God.

 

1. Saints

2. Religious wicked

3. Non-religious wicked

 

There’s a reason you need to know about these three groups of people. When the fifth trumpet sounds, Jesus begins a process that will eliminate the non-religious wicked from the Earth. By the time the seventh trumpet sounds, there will only be two groups of people left on Earth: Those worshiping the Lamb (Jesus) and those worshiping the lamblike (Lucifer). 

 

Lucifer and his angels will be permitted to exit the spirit realm (the abyss) where he presently lives. When the fifth trumpet sounds, a great horde of angles will suddenly darken the sky and a glorious Lucifer will descend upon Earth to address various nations in a rapid sequence of glorious appearances.

 

It is a gross understatement to say that the people of Earth will be shocked! The wicked will be stunned and speechless. Never has the world seen anything like the show of glory that Lucifer will put on. Attended by millions of hovering angels, and performing miracles at will, the wicked will be stunned and speechless. But, the saints will not be surprised nor curious to see the devil because they know who he really is.

 

Lucifer, illuminated with supernatural light, pretending to be Almighty God, and backing up his blasphemous claims by calling fire from Heaven, will tell the people of Earth that he has come to establish his kingdom on Earth and there will be a thousand years of peace as soon as the opposition is eliminated!

 

The religious wicked will think that Almighty God has come to live and reign among men when they behold this glorious being and many non-religious will be converted on the basis of Lucifer’s deceptions and they will join the religious wicked group!    

 

You already know that the fifth seal indicates there will be much martyrdom after Satan appears on Earth because the saints will not bow down and worship the devil. You already know that the Great Tribulation will begin with awesome judgments and spectacular displays of God’s wrath…. So thoughtfully consider the following statement.  I rarely say anything profound:

 

Nothing but the glory and power of Jesus at the Second Coming can eclipse the glorious and powerful release of Lucifer and millions of his angels from the spirit realm.

 

In other words, the arrival of the Antichrist will be a rapid sequence of glorious “road shows” designed to impress a suffering world that indeed, a magnificent Savior has just arrived. The appearing of the devil will make the religious wicked think that the Second Coming has taken place.

 

(Note: Lucifer’s appearing will be a series of “local road shows” because Jesus does not permit the devil to appear in the same manner as He will appear. Lucifer will have to travel about, presenting himself in different places at different times. This is why Jesus said:

 

Matthew 24:23   At that time if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or, ‘There he is!’ do not believe it.

 

Matthew 24:24   For false Christ’s and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and miracles to deceive even the elect – if that were possible. 

 

Matthew 24:25   See, I have told you ahead of time.

 

Matthew 24:26   “So if anyone tells you, ‘there he is, out in the desert,’ do not go out; or, ‘Here he is, in the inner rooms,’ do not believe it.

 

Matthew 24:27   For as lightening that comes from the east is visible even in the west. So will the coming of the Son of Man.”

 

The coming of Jesus will be visible from east to west, from horizon to horizon. This is not the case for Lucifer.

 

The appearing of Lucifer in the fifth trumpet is unlike the Second Coming in two ways. First, during the seventh bowl, the sign of Jesus and His angels will appear in the sky for a period of about ten days and He draws near the Earth. As Jesus draws near this devastated planet, every eye will be able to see Jesus and His angels because they will encircle Earth and Earth will rotate beneath this glorious entourage. Think of millions forming a huge ring around the Earth. Night and day, as Earth rotates, from horizon to horizon, from East to West, the glory of the Second Coming will illuminate Earth!

 

Revelation 1:7   Look, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him; and all the peoples of the earth will mourn because of him. So shall it be! Amen.”

 

The second difference between the appearing of Lucifer and Jesus is that Jesus will not touch Earth at the Second Coming. Instead, Paul clearly says the saints will be called up to meet the Lord in the air. Together, with Jesus, the saints will travel to the Holy City, New Jerusalem. (John 14:1-3) There, the saints will spend 1,000 years reigning with Jesus in judgment. During this time, the saints will determine the amount of restitution that will be extracted from the wicked at the end of the 1,000 years. (We will examine these matters when we study Revelation 20-22.)

 

Nevertheless, the many appearances of the devil with 200 million demonic angels will be so grand, so brilliant, so powerful, so overwhelming that if possible, the very elect would be deceived! You may be wondering, how do we know that Lucifer is going to appear with 200 million angels?

 

Revelation 9:11   They [Lucifer’s angels] had as king over them the angel of the Abyss, whose name in Hebrew is Abaddon, and in Greek, Apollyon. [Destroyer]

 

Revelation 9:16   The number of mounted troops was two hundred million. I heard their number.”

 

I think the number of angels that were cast out of Heaven with Lucifer is greater than 200 million. If so, it seems that Jesus limits the number of demons that can attend Lucifer or there would be more demons than people.

 

Now let’s switch gears…. Here’s some history about the Antichrist that you need to consider:

 

Christians have a variety of ideas about the identity of the Antichrist. Most Christians believe the Antichrist is coming, but there is a great deal of confusion about who the Antichrist will be.

 

1 John 2:18   Dear Children, this is the last hour; and as you have heard that the antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have come. This is how you will know it is the last hour…

 

1 John 4:2   This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, 

 

1 John 4:3   but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is already in the world.”

 

Ok, the Antichrist is coming. So, who is he?

 

Some Protestants today believe the Antichrist is the pope. This view became popular during the Dark Ages when the Catholic Church persecuted anyone who tried to reform the church or denounce its doctrines. From a human point of view, it is easy to see how people could think the pope was “anti-Christ” and ultimately, The Antichrist. When people are languishing in dungeons or dying at the stake because of religious differences, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out who is evil. 

 

After Martin Luther nailed his 95 theses to the church door in Wittenberg in 1517, the Catholic Church became alarmed at the rebellion and growth of  Protestantism. The church tried to combat the growth of Protestantism by burning Bibles and having Protestants put to death, but Protestantism continued to flourish because Protestants were able to demonstrate from the Bible prophecy that a blasphemous power would arise out of the fourth beast in Daniel 7 and it was predicted that it would persecute the saints of God.

 

Since history leaves no wiggle room on the succession of world empires, the fourth beast in Daniel 7 can be nothing other than the Roman Empire. Therefore, the little horn power in Daniel 7 that persecutes the saints has to be the Roman Catholic Church because it is the only enduring religious and political power to rise out of Rome. For three hundred years, Protestants rallied around Daniel 7 as a common doctrine indicating that the Roman Catholic Church was Babylon, the Mother of Harlots, and the pope was the predicted Antichrist.

 

Going to Martin Luther’s day, I am sure you can understand how loyal Catholics became furious at the Protestant movement. Seventeen years after Luther nailed his theses to the church door, Ignatius Loyola founded a secret order in the Catholic Church called the Society of Jesus on August 15, 1534. Members of this secret order became known as Jesuits. The Jesuit society formed out of a single purpose: The destruction of Protestantism, both physically and theologically.

 

The secret society of the Jesuits caused enormous death, damage and grief. In fact, the Jesuits became so notorious for their wicked deeds that they were evicted from Portugal (1759), France (1764), Spain (1767), Naples (1767), and Russia (1820). Even with the power to inflict a horrible inquisition on Europe, the Jesuits were unable to stop the growth of Protestantism.

 

I should also mention that eleven years after the Jesuits organized, the Catholic Church conducted a council that lasted 18 years in the city of Trent, Italy. One outcome from the Council of Trent was the development of a clever strategy to beat the Protestants at their own game. The Jesuits decided they would thoroughly study the Antichrist doctrine taught by the Protestants and the church would respond to Daniel 7 and the finger-pointing tactics of Protestants with a Biblical alternative. The church would offer an explanation of the Antichrist that would confuse Protestants and defuse their popularity.

 

A Jesuit scholar from Spain, Francisco Ribera, studied into this matter and he eventually came up with the idea that the Antichrist would be an evil man who would come to power down in the distant future, at the end of time. This man would gain the favor of the Jews and he would enable them to rebuild Jerusalem and the temple. Ultimately, this man would turn on the Jews and become their enemy. This man would bring the world to a catastrophic and through global war. Ribera’s commentary was published in 1590, and Protestants immediately rejected it – until the middle of the 19th century.

 

Early Protestants knew the Church was trying to “spin” Bible prophecy so that the pope would not be the Antichrist and this made their case and efforts to expose the pope as the Antichrist stronger.

 

About two hundred years are Ribera’s commentary was published the French Revolution began. During this bloodiest of European wars, the pope was taken prisoner by General Berthier in February 1798. When the papacy fell, 1,260 years of papal dominance over Europe ended. The Roman Catholic Church was left badly wounded and powerless.

 

About 30 years after the French Revolution, in 1831, William Miller, a licensed Baptist minister, began preaching that Jesus would return to Earth around 1844. A significant number of people in New England (between 50-100 thousand) became followers of miller and when nothing happened in 1844, the Millerite movement imploded.

 

Miller’s disappointment is important within the context of this study because two things confused Protestants in Europe and the United States after 1844.

 

 First, the historical method of interpretation used by Miller proved to be a disaster. Miller’s embarrassment convinced many Protestant leaders that Bible prophecy needed a fresh study.

 

Second, since the power of the papacy had been destroyed, Protestants needed another Antichrist. The pope was gone.

 

A number of prophetic conferences were held in Europe and the United States during the 19th century and guess what? Protestants began to adopt the views of Ribera written in 1590! Ribera’s views did not become widely popular within Protestantism until Cyrus Scofield published his Scofield reference Bible around 1909, near the beginning of the twentieth century.

 

During the past 100 years, millions of Protestants have embraced the counterreformation ideas presented by Ribera in 1590. This bit of history explains why millions of Christians today believe the Antichrist will be a man from Europe that rises to power. They believe he will become powerful and prominent. That he will befriend the Jews and help them rebuild the temple. Then, half way through the 70th week, they believe he will betray the Jews and will cause Armageddon.

 

As I said, the Protestant position on the identity of the Antichrist is diverse. Some Protestants still believe the Antichrist is the pope. They believe the pope and the Catholic Church will control the world someday and everyone who refuses to worship on Sunday will be killed.

 

On the other hand, it should be said that a few Protestants today think the Antichrist was Nero, the Roman Caesar who ruled from A.D. 54 to A.D. 68. He imposed a lot of suffering, death and grief on early Christians. Ironically, the view that Nero was the Antichrist originated with a Jesuit priest. His name was Luis de Alcazar (1554-1613). His 900-page theory, published in 1618 was designed to nullify the doctrines of Protestants. (It is fascinating that two contemporary Jesuit scholars arrived a totally different conclusion about the same time and the church blessed both efforts. So, what does the Catholic Church really believe?)

 

Now that you have a little background on today’s Protestant confusion, I hope you can understand why I believe a great tragedy is in the making. The devil will physically appear on Earth at the appointed time, masquerading as Almighty God and deceiving billions of people, and Protestants don’t have a single Bible text to deal with the topic. Not ONE! Zero.

 

The Antichrist predicted in the Bible is far more powerful, far more evil, and far more destructive than anything possible for a mere mortal to do. The Antichrist to which the Bible points are infinitely more powerful and evil and destructive than any human being could be!   

 

The coming Antichrist has been anti-Christ for thousands of years. He is not to be confined by the limitations imposed on human beings. Lucifer was the highest of the angels, Lucifer was the brightest and the most gifted of God’s creation. Lucifer chose to become a devil and as such, he has used his incredible gifts and talents for evil. For thousands of years he has been doing everything possible to thwart the plans and purposes of God. 

 

He is the original Anti-Christ and he will be given an opportunity to fully present himself before mankind. I want to lift up your thinking and put the appearing of the Antichrist on a higher plane than Nero, the pope or some man from Europe. The physical appearing of the devil is a component of the Great Tribulation which 99.99% of the Christian world does not anticipate!

 

The world’s greatest deception is about to take place and most Christians are totally ignorant of this coming event. This is terrible! Yes, most Christians have heard that the Antichrist is coming, but they don’t have a clue that it will be the miracle-working devil, Lucifer, masquerading as Almighty God. Even worse, most of the people on Earth have no idea that 200 million giant angels will attend Lucifer!

(Consider this, if the two figurines in Solomon’s temple were made life-size, and I think they were, at a minimum, Lucifer’s angels will be about 15 feet tall. See 1 Kings 6:26. Do you remember how one angel killed 185,000 Assyrian soldiers one night? (2 Kings 19:35) Do you think that if all of the armies of Earth were brought together to fight Lucifer’s angels, a dozen of his angels could destroy several million men in one night? Sure! The point here is that the coming Antichrist and his forces are supernatural. They will dwarf the people of Earth in strength and ability. This is serious!)

 

Why does Jesus permit the devil and his angels to appear?  Because God’s actions are always multipurposed, Jesus has several reasons for releasing the devil upon the world. Here are three easy ones:

 

1.   When two-thirds of the time allotted to the Great Tribulation has passed and the advancement of the gospel has stalled – Jesus will release the devil and his angels from the abyss and the devil’s actions will push a number of people “off the fence.” In other words, some people will wake up after beholding the reality of the devil and his behavior and they will give their hearts and lives to Christ. (Do you remember the story of the serpents in the desert? Those bitten by venomous snakes could go and look at the bronze serpent that Moses put on a pole and they would live. Numbers 21:8,9 The idea here is similar. Many will realize the glorious being claiming to be God is evil and they will turn to Jesus for salvation to escape the devil’s torture.)

 

2.    After he arrives, the devil will level the playing ground for all religions on Earth. This is a most crucial point. You know how every religion believes it is right and the others are wrong. You should know that most of the religious wicked worship their religion because it is an extension of their self-righteousness. In other words, religion is their idol. Now hear this: When the devil appears, he will terminate all of the religions of the world and this will create a huge vacuum for the group called “the religious wicked.”

 

What will they now worship? Think about this: Catholicism, Protestantism, Islam, Judaism, Eastern Mysticism, Paganism and Atheism will be abolished after Lucifer arrives…  He will do this because there can be no room for religious diversity when “God Himself” lives among men..

 

The devil will claim to be God. He will declare his teachings as truth and his will as law and who will be able to argue? Who will be able to differ without receiving a severe penalty? Masquerading as God, the devil will establish a new religion, a one-world religion. He will claim to be God, he will exercise the divine prerogatives of God and no one will be able to stop him or kill him.

 

3.   Jesus releases the devil upon the world so the universe can witness the huge contrast between the government, the character and ways of a God of love and the government, the character and the ways of a god who loves only himself.

 

This contrast will be a cosmic lesson studied throughout eternity. God wants the universe to understand that His laws are based on love that does not have one thread of selfishness in it. God also wants the universe to know that all three members of the Godhead have committed their divine powers of omnipresence, omnipotence, and omniscience to ensuring that the universe will forever remain governed by the law of love. These laws are immutable and eternal because conformity to them is the only way God’s children, forever having the power of choice, can live happily ever after.

 

I hope you are beginning to see that the fifth trumpet is a very serious topic and it warrants a close and through investigation. Even more, if you have family and friends who know nothing about this profoundly important subject, you should introduce them to the fifth trumpet as soon as possible.

 

This is a sad truth: We live at a time when most of the world does not believe that mankind has a supernatural malicious enemy, a fallen angel called the devil or Satan. This is very amazing. Think about this:

 

Lucifer has been able to trash and thrash planet Earth for 6,000 years, he has been able to cause unspeakable cruelty, outrageous suffering, endless illness, abject poverty, rampant arrogance and ignorance, not to mention the death of everyone who lives here and yet, most human beings are totally unaware of his presence and his pervasive work. And even if they do believe in a devil, most people regard the devil as a fictitious character rather than a vigilant enemy. He is one very clever devil. He is unbelievingly deceptive! Were it not for the Bible, we could not know God nor His relentless adversary, Lucifer, the devil.

 

For the moment, I am going to assume that everyone understands that Lucifer was once in Heaven. He was a covering cherub, that is, he stood on the left side of the throne of God. Michael, the archangel – the other covering cherub, stood on the right. Over time, Lucifer became jealous of Michael’s higher position and honor. Because Lucifer did not want the other angels to know 6that he was jealous, he began to undermine the authority and honor that is due Michael through lies and doubts.

 

This is how Lucifer became Anti-Christ because Michael is the same member of the Godhead who lived in Heaven and was born as Jesus Christ on Earth.

 

Eventually, Lucifer was cast out of Heaven along with one-third of Heaven’s host. Revelation 12:4   His tail [tale] swept a third of the stars out of the sky and flung them to the earth…

                   Lucifer’s History

 

1                   2               3     4                     5

x----4000----x—2000—x---x-----1000-----x

 

1.   Cast out of Heaven for rebellion

2.   Cast out of Heaven on Resurrection Sunday – no longer represents Earth

3.   Released from the Abyss

4.   Returned to the Abyss for 1,000 years

5.   Destroyed in the lake of fire

Because chronological order is a very important rule in apocalyptic prophecy, I am going to go over to Revelation 12 where the birth of Jesus occurs so that I can show you how the fifth trumpet in Revelation 9 unfolds.

 

Let’s look at Revelation 12:

 

Revelation 12:1   A great and wondrous sign appeared in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet and a crown of twelve stars on her head.

 

Revelation 12:2   She was pregnant and cried out in pain as she was about to give birth.

 

Revelation 12:3   Then another sign appeared in heaven: an enormous red dragon with seven heads and ten horns and seven crowns on his heads.

 

Revelation 12:4   His tail swept a third of the stars of the sky and flung them to the earth. The dragon stood in front of the woman who was about to give birth, so that he might devour her child the moment that it was born.

 

Revelation 12:5   She gave birth to a son, a male child, who will rule all the nations with an iron scepter. And her child was snatched up to God and to his throne.

 

Revelation 12:6   The women fled into the desert to a place prepared for her by God, where she might be taken care of for 1,260 days.

Four establishing points of reference are found in this prophecy:

 

1.   The Woman represents the people of God (this contrasts with the other woman in Revelation, the great whore who represents the wicked)

 

2.   The great red dragon with seven heads and ten horns represents the devil

 

3.   The male child is Jesus who will rule all nations with a rod of iron, and He was snatched up to God’s throne.

 

4.   Dragon chased the women to the desert for 1,260 days – a parallel reference to the time, times and half a time mentioned in Daniel 7:25.

 

                                  Time Line

 

            1                2                             3                             4

---------x------------x----------------------x-------1,260--------x----

 

1.   Jesus born 4 B.C. / Herod

2.   Jesus ascended A.D. 30

3.   Dragon chases woman 538

4.   Papal power broke 1798

 

Now that the time line in verses 1-6 has been established [Remember, according to Rule One, time lines are crucial in apocalyptic prophecies because every event is either date stamped or chronologically located] we will continue with the next prophecy in Revelation because it builds upon the time line laid out in the prophecy found in verses 1-6.

 

Revelation 12:7   And there was war in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angles fought back.

 

Revelation 12:8   But he was not strong enough, and they lost their place in heaven.

 

Revelation 12:9   The great dragon was hurled down – that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him.

 

Revelation 12:10   Then I heard a loud voice in heaven say: “Now have come the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God, and the authority of his Christ. For the accuser of our brothers, who accuses them before our God day and night.

 

Revelation 12:11   They [our brothers] overcame him by the blood of the lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death.

 

Revelation 12:13   When the dragon saw that he had been hurled to the earth, he pursued the woman who had been given birth to the male child.

 

Revelation 12:14   The woman was given the two wings of a great eagle, so that she might fly to the place prepared for her in the desert, where she would be taken care of for a time, times and half a time, out of the serpent’s reach…”

 

Key question: When did this war in Heaven between the dragon and Michael occur? Many Christians think the war refers to the original conflict between Lucifer and Michael, but this is not the case! Watch closely how this unfolds:

 

Revelation 12:7   And there was war in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back.

 

Revelation 12:8   but he was not strong enough, and they lost their place in heaven…

 

Revelation 12:13   When the dragon saw that he had been hurled to the earth, he pursued the woman who had given birth to the male child.”

 

Look again at verse 13.   This expulsion from Heaven has to occur after the male child is born. But wait, there is more! Look at these verses:

 

Revelation 12:9   The great dragon was hurled down – that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him. 

 

Revelation 12:10   Then I heard a loud voice in heaven say: “Now have come the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God, and the authority of his Christ. For the accuser of our brothers, who accuses them before our God day and night, has been hurled down.”

 

If this war occurred before the creation of the world as some Christians claim, how could Satan be called the accuser of our brothers when there weren’t any humans to accuse???  But wait, there’s more! Look at the words of Jesus:

 

John 12:26   Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also must be. My father will honor the one who serves me.

 

John 12:27   “Now my heart is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? No, it was for this very reason I came to this hour.

 

John 12:28   Father, glorify your name!” Then a voice came from heaven, “I have glorified it, and will glorify it again.”

 

John 12:29   The crowd that was there and heard it said it had thundered; others said an angel had spoken to him.

 

John 12:30   Jesus said, “This voice was for your benefit, not mine.

 

John 12:31   Now is the time for judgment on this world; now the prince of this world will be driven out [of Heaven].

 

Jesus hurried to Heaven on Resurrection Morning. This is why He told Mary not to hold on to Him. (John 20:17) He returned that morning to the Father to expel Lucifer and take his seat as Earth’s representative in Heaven’s Congress.

 

As the prince of this world, Lucifer had represented Earth for 4,000 years, but Jesus, on the basis of His sinless life and shed blood, declared that he had earned the right to represent the world. The Father agreed with Jesus.

 

Lucifer and Michael/Jesus fought over this position and Lucifer was humiliated, defeated and forever cast out of Heaven. No longer could he serve as Earth’s representative. (See Job 1.) What does this have to do with the fifth trumpet? Quite a bit actually. John saw the cosmic battle between Jesus and the dragon in vision. He saw:

 

KJV: Revelation 12:9   And the dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil or Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.”  

The devil and his angels were cast into the Earth. In other words, like a stone thrown into a lake, the devil and his angels sank out of sight after they were cast into the Earth.

 

These demons have been confined in the Abyss since resurrection Sunday and at the fifth trumpet, the Abyss will be unlocked and the devil and a large number of his angels will pop out and be seen!

 

John saw this course of events and later on, an angel spoke to him about it:

 

Revelation 17:8   The beast [the dragon], which you saw, once was [visible], now is not [visible], and will come out of the Abyss and go to his destruction. The inhabitants of the earth whose names have not been written in the book of life from the creation of the world will be astonished when they see the beast [the dragon], because he was [visible], now is not [visible], and yet will come [up out of the Abyss and be visible].

 

So, what does the Bible teach?

 

              1              2                   3                        4

----------x-----------x--------------x------1,260-----x------------

           4BC         AD30           538                    1798

                              x--------out of sight-------------------------x

                  Cast into Earth                                          At fifth trumpet

                                                                                    comes up out of Earth

 

Now that you have some background information, let’s read Revelation 9:1-11:

 

Revelation 9:1   The fifth angel sounded his trumpet, and I saw a star that had fallen from the sky to the earth. The star was given the key to the shaft of the Abyss.

 

Revelation 9:2   When he opened the Abyss, smoke rose from it like the smoke from a gigantic furnace. The sun and sky were darkened by the smoke from the Abyss.

 

Revelation 9:3   And out of the smoke locusts came down upon the earth and were given power like that of scorpions of the earth.

 

Revelation 9:4   They were told not to harm the grass of the earth or any plant or tree, but only those people who did not have the seal of God on their foreheads. [actually, those in opposition to the claims of the devil will be tormented, the non-religious wicked, the devil cannot touch those having been sealed, nor will he harm his followers]

 

Revelation 9:5   They were not given power to kill them, but only to torture them for five months. And the agony they suffered was like that of a sting of a scorpion when it strikes a man.

 

Revelation 9:6   During those days men will seek death, but will not find it; they will long to die, but death will elude them.

Revelation 9:7   The locusts looked like horses prepared to do battle. On their heads they wore something like crowns of gold, and their faces resembled human faces.

 

Revelation 9:8   Their hair was like woman’s hair, and their teeth were like lions’ teeth.

 

Revelation 9:9   They had breastplates like breastplates of iron, and the sound of their wings were like the thundering of many horses and chariots rushing into battle.

 

Revelation 9:10   They had tails and stings like scorpions, and in their tails they had power to torment people for five months.

 

Revelation 9:11   They had a king over them the angel of the Abyss, whose name in Hebrew is Abaddon, and in Greek, Apollyon.” 

 

The words, Abaddon and Apollyon mean the same thing, “destroyer.” God wants Jew and Gentile alike (this is why there the Hebrew and Greek language is used) to identify this enemy.

 

Looking at God’s use of Destroyer

Let’s start with Revelation 9:11 since you already understand the full cup principle. The full cup principle is this: When a nation or group of people reach a point where extended mercy does not produce a redeeming effect, God sends a destroyer. The destroyer may be called to impose redemptive judgments or totally destructive judgments. Here’s an example of the full cup principle:

 

God told Jeremiah:

 

Jeremiah 4:5   “Announce in Judah and proclaim in Jerusalem and say: ‘Sound the trumpet throughout the land!’ Cry aloud and say: ‘Gather together! Let us flee to the fortified cities!’ 

 

Jeremiah 4:6   Raise the signal to go to Zion! Flee for safety without delay! For I am bring disaster from the north, even terrible destruction.

 

Jeremiah 4:7   A lion has come out of his lair; a destroyer of nations has set out. He has left his place to lay waste your land. Your towns will lie in ruins without inhabitant…

 

Jeremiah 4:16   “Tell this to the nations, proclaim it to Jerusalem: ‘A besieging army is coming from a distant land, raising a war cry against the cities of Judah.

 

Jeremiah 4:18   “Your own conduct and actions have brought this upon you. This is your punishment. How bitter it is! How it pierces to the heart!”

 

Jeremiah 4:22   “My people are fools; they do not know me. They are senseless children; they have no understanding. They are skilled in doing evil; they know now how to do good.”

Jeremiah 5:15   O house of Israel,” declares the Lord, “I am bringing a distant nation against you – an ancient and enduring nation, a people whose language you do not know, whose speech you do not understand.

 

Jeremiah 5:16   Their quivers are like an open grave, all of them are mighty warriors.

 

Jeremiah 5:17   They will devour your harvests and food, devour your sons and daughters, they will devour your flocks and herds; devour your vines and fig trees. With the sword they will destroy the fortified cities in which you trust.

 

Jeremiah 25:8   Therefore the Lord Almighty says this: “Because you have not listened to my words,

 

Jeremiah 25:9   I will summon all the peoples of the north and my servant Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon,” declares the Lord, “and I will bring them against this land and its inhabitants and against all the surrounding nations. I will completely destroy them and make them an object of horror and scorn, and an everlasting ruin.”

 

Nebuchadnezzar, king of ancient Babylon, was empowered by God to be the destroyer of Israel. In a parallel way, Lucifer, king of modern Babylon, will be released upon the whole world to destroy Earth.

 

There is significance in the Hebrew and Greek names: Apollyon and Abaddon.  This name represents a curse for Jew and gentile alike. The devil will be physically released from the Abyss [spirit realm] to bring the drama of sin to a close. The Antichrist and his angels will be on Earth 445 days.

 

2 Thessalonians 2:3   Don’t let anyone deceive you in any way, for that day [the Second Coming] will not come until the rebellion occurs [a world-wide rebellion against the everlasting gospel will bring the gospel of Jesus to a stand still] and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the man doomed to destruction.

 

2 Thessalonians 2:4   He will oppose and will exult himself over everything that is called God or is worshiped, so that he sets himself up in God’s temple [receiving the worship reserved for God], proclaiming himself to be God.

 

2 Thessalonians 2:5   Don’t you remember that when I was with you I used to tell you these things?

 

2 Thessalonians 2:6   And now you know what is holding him back, so that he may be revealed at the proper time.

 

2 Thessalonians 2:7   For the secret power of lawlessness [rebellion] is already at work; but the one who now holds it back will continue to do so till he is taken out of the way. [After corporate intercession has ended]

 

2 Thessalonians 2:8   And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will overthrow with the breath of his mouth and destroy by the splendor of his coming.

 

2 Thessalonians 2:9   The coming of the lawless one will [appear to be divine and glorious, but it will] be in accordance with the work of Satan displayed in all kinds of counterfeit miracles, signs and wonders.   

 

2 Thessalonians 2:10   and in every sort of evil that deceives those who are perishing. They perish because [they heard and] they refused to love the truth and so be saved.

 

2 Thessalonians 2:11   For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie

 

2 Thessalonians 2:12   and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but delighted in wickedness.”

 

End Text:

 

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