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Section 9B .. The Future/End of The Age

 

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The-Future

The End Of The Age Part VI... The Seven Bowls

Carol Brooks
Edited by Vicki Narlee

 "Neither their silver nor their gold Will be able to deliver them On the day of the Lord's wrath; And all the earth will be devoured In the fire of His jealousy, for He will make a complete end, indeed a terrifying one, of all the inhabitants of the earth" (Zephaniah 1:18 NASB)

INDEX TO ALL SIX SECTIONS

PART I... THE 'DAY OF THE LORD This devastating period of time, described as coming suddenly, was foretold by the prophets of old and is described in several different terms in both Old and New Testaments

PART II... THE FIRST SIX SEALS. If one avoids a superficial reading of Matthew 24, then compares what Jesus said in that chapter with the Seals of Revelation 6, it becomes quite clear that the Seals represent the persecution of Christians.

PART III... THE SEVENTH SEAL AND THE FIRST SIX TRUMPETS. This Seventh, and last, Seal does not bring about any disasters in itself but introduces the Seven Trumpets. In the Old Testament, trumpets often announced a coming disaster. And it will be no different at the end of the age, when the sounding of trumpets will herald the plagues that God will send on the earth, which will indeed be of 'Biblical proportions'.

PART IV... THE SEVENTH TRUMPET. This last Trumpet is, in a sense, the most eventful of all them all, since it literally ushers the old age out, and the new one in. In summary, this last and final Trumpet... a) Brings and end to the mystery of God, when the doors to the Kingdom close forever with no possibility of redemption for any that have not yet become a disciple of the Lamb. b) Marks the point when believers are caught up in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air (the rapture). They are physically moved off the earth for a very specific reason. c) Introduces the Seven Bowls that end all things.

 PART V... THE RAPTURE. The reasons we cannot, and should not, trust in the Rapture taking place before the tribulation.

YOU ARE HERE 001orange PART VI... THE SEVEN BOWLS. Zephaniah 1:18 says it all... "Neither their silver nor their gold Will be able to deliver them On the day of the Lord's wrath; And all the earth will be devoured In the fire of His jealousy, for He will make a complete end, indeed a terrifying one, of all the inhabitants of the earth"

 

The End Of The Age Part VI... The Seven Bowls

The Seven Bowls/ The Last Woe. (Revelation 15, 16)

    Then I saw another sign in heaven, great and marvelous, seven angels who had seven plagues, which are the last, because in them the wrath of God is finished...Then one of the four living creatures gave to the seven angels seven golden bowls full of the wrath of God, who lives forever and ever...Then I heard a loud voice from the temple, saying to the seven angels, "Go and pour out on the earth the seven bowls of the wrath of God." (Revelation 15:1,7. 16:1 NASB)

The general tenor of the verses describing the Seven Bowls is that they are not as long drawn out as the Trumpets, but follow one another in quick succession. In any case, the kind of conditions described would make it impossible for people to survive more than a few days.

Because there is great deal of similarity in the two series, there are those that believe that the Seven Bowls are a recapitulation or in some way, a concise summing up of the Seven Trumpets. However, this view does not take into account that each of the first four Trumpets affects only a third of the targeted area, while the corresponding bowl affects the entire earth. This is a crucial difference, as the Trumpets cause great affliction and suffering (The 'Great Tribulation'), while the Bowls rapidly make an end of all things. Additionally, the Fifth and Sixth Trumpets are aimed at man himself (in a sense, so is the Seventh Trumpet since the Seven Bowls begin when it is blown). While man is affected by the final Three Bowls, they seem to be largely aimed at the supernatural realm.

The million dollar question is whether anyone will survive the bowls. Although, Jesus said

    Unless those days had been cut short, no life would have been saved; but for the sake of the elect those days will be cut short. (Matthew 24:22 NASB),

He was referring to the 'Great Tribulation' (symbolized by the Seven Trumpets) that takes place while believers are still on earth. Hie people are 'raptured' or taken off the earth at or just before the blowing of the Seventh Trumpet, which heralds the beginning of the Seven Bowls. See Chapter IV... The Seventh Trumpet.

Ten Plagues of Egypt: The Seven Trumpets can be likened to the Ten Plagues of Egypt. Gradually increasing in intensity, plague after plague fell on the Egyptians, while the Israelites that lived in their midst were not affected. However, once the Israelites were safely on the far shore of the Red Sea (the rapture), the Egyptian army was completely destroyed (the Seven Bowls).

Zephaniah 1:18 certainly indicates that no one will survive the Bowls.

    Neither their silver nor their gold Will be able to deliver them On the day of the Lord's wrath; And all the earth will be devoured In the fire of His jealousy, For He will make a complete end, Indeed a terrifying one, Of all the inhabitants of the earth. (Zephaniah 1:18 NASB)

Luke: When Luke drew a parallel between the days of Noah, the days of the Son of Man, and the days preceding the destruction of Sodom, he specifically said that all the inhabitants of the city were destroyed after Lot, the only righteous man in the city, left Sodom. Once believers are taken out of the way (The Rapture) the Seven Bowls will destroy all the inhabitants of the earth.

    (26) "And just as it happened in the days of Noah, so it will be also in the days of the Son of Man: (27) they were eating, they were drinking, they were marrying, they were being given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all.  (28) "It was the same as happened in the days of Lot: they were eating, they were drinking, they were buying, they were selling, they were planting, they were building; (29) but on the day that Lot went out from Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven and destroyed them all.  (30) "It will be just the same on the day that the Son of Man is revealed.  (Luke 17:26-30 NASB)


The First Four Bowls

The first Four Bowls are poured out on the natural realm (16:1-9).

So the first angel went and poured out his bowl on the earth; and it became a loathsome and malignant sore on the people who had the mark of the beast and who worshiped his image. (Revelation 16:2 NASB)

The second angel poured out his bowl into the sea, and it became blood like that of a dead man; and every living thing in the sea died.  (Revelation 16:3 NASB)

Then the third angel poured out his bowl into the rivers and the springs of waters; and they became blood. And I heard the angel of the waters saying, "Righteous are You, who are and who were, O Holy One, because You judged these things; for they poured out the blood of saints and prophets, and You have given them blood to drink. They deserve it." And I heard the altar saying, "Yes, O Lord God, the Almighty, true and righteous are Your judgments." (Revelation 16:4-7 NASB)

The fourth angel poured out his bowl upon the sun, and it was given to it to scorch men with fire. Men were scorched with fierce heat; and they blasphemed the name of God who has the power over these plagues, and they did not repent so as to give Him glory. (Revelation 16:8-9 NASB)


The Final Three Bowls
seem to be aimed at the supernatural realm (16:10-21).

Then the fifth angel poured out his bowl on the throne of the beast, and his kingdom became darkened; and they gnawed their tongues because of pain, and they blasphemed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores; and they did not repent of their deeds. (Revelation 16:10-11 NASB)

The sixth angel poured out his bowl on the great river, the Euphrates; and its water was dried up, so that the way would be prepared for the kings from the east. And I saw coming out of the mouth of the dragon and out of the mouth of the beast and out of the mouth of the false prophet, three unclean spirits like frogs; for they are spirits of demons, performing signs, which go out to the kings of the whole world, to gather them together for the war of the great day of God, the Almighty. ("Behold, I am coming like a thief. Blessed is the one who stays awake and keeps his clothes, so that he will not walk about naked and men will not see his shame.") And they gathered them together to the place which in Hebrew is called Har-Magedon. (Revelation 16:12-16 NASB)

Then the seventh angel poured out his bowl upon the air**, and a loud voice came out of the temple from the throne, saying, "It is done." And there were flashes of lightning and sounds and peals of thunder; and there was a great earthquake, such as there had not been since man came to be upon the earth, so great an earthquake was it, and so mighty. The great city was split into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell. Babylon the great was remembered before God, to give her the cup of the wine of His fierce wrath. And every island fled away, and the mountains were not found. And huge hailstones, about one hundred pounds each, *came down from heaven upon men; and men blasphemed God because of the plague of the hail, because its plague *was extremely severe. (Revelation 16:17-21 NASB)

This is followed by The Millennium... The thousand year reign of Jesus Christ.

** Note: Satan is called "the prince of the power of the air" in Ephesians 2:2.


Comparison of Trumpets and Bowls
There is a great deal of similarity between the judgments of the trumpets and bowls.

First Trumpet /First Bowl
Both affect the earth itself. However, at the sounding of the first trumpet, hail and fire mixed with blood cast to the earth and a third of the earth, trees and grass are burned up. At the first bowl, the men that had the mark of the beast are afflicted with grievous sores.

    The first sounded, and there came hail and fire, mixed with blood, and they were thrown to the earth; and a third of the earth was burned up, and a third of the trees were burned up, and all the green grass was burned up. (Revelation 8:7 NASB)

    So the first angel went and poured out his bowl on the earth; and it became a loathsome and malignant sore on the people who had the mark of the beast and who worshiped his image. (Revelation 16:2 NASB)

Second Trumpet / Second Bowl
At the second trumpet a third part of the sea becomes blood, which causes the death of a third of all sea creatures. At the second bowl, the sea turns into blood, killing everything in it.

    The second angel sounded, and something like a great mountain burning with fire was thrown into the sea; and a third of the sea became blood, and a third of the creatures which were in the sea and had life, died; and a third of the ships were destroyed. (Revelation 8:8-9 NASB)

    The second angel poured out his bowl into the sea, and it became blood like that of a dead man; and every living thing in the sea died.  (Revelation 16:3 NASB)

Third Trumpet / Third Bowl
The Third Trumpet strikes a third of the rivers, and other sources of fresh-water making them bitter and killing those who drank these waters. The Third Bowl indicates that all rivers and 'springs of water' became blood.

    The third angel sounded, and a great star fell from heaven, burning like a torch, and it fell on a third of the rivers and on the springs of waters. The name of the star is called Wormwood; and a third of the waters became wormwood, and many men died from the waters, because they were made bitter. (Revelation 8:10-11 NASB)

    Then the third angel poured out his bowl into the rivers and the springs of waters; and they became blood. (Revelation 16:4 NASB)

Fourth Trumpet / Fourth Bowl
The Fourth Trumpet darkens a third part of the sun, moon, and stars. The Fourth Bowl again affects the sun, but this time its heat is intensified to the point it scorches the inhabitants of the earth.

    The fourth angel sounded, and a third of the sun and a third of the moon and a third of the stars were struck, so that a third of them would be darkened and the day would not shine for a third of it, and the night in the same way.  (Revelation 8:12 NASB)

    The fourth angel poured out his bowl upon the sun, and it was given to it to scorch men with fire. (Revelation 16:8 NASB)

Fifth Trumpet / Fifth Bowl
At the Fifth Trumpet, those who do not have the seal of God on their foreheads are tormented by 'locusts' for five months (a specific, limited time) and are in such pain that they long to die. The very air is darkened by the smoke from the abyss that this army comes out from. The Fifth Bowl strikes at the 'throne of the beast' and his kingdom is darkened. and those who belong to his kingdom gnaw their tongues in pain, but yet blaspheme God.

    Then the fifth angel sounded, and I saw a star from heaven which had fallen to the earth; and the key of the bottomless pit was given to him. He opened the bottomless pit, and smoke went up out of the pit, like the smoke of a great furnace; and the sun and the air were darkened by the smoke of the pit. Then out of the smoke came locusts upon the earth, and power was given them, as the scorpions of the earth have power. They were told not to hurt the grass of the earth, nor any green thing, nor any tree, but only the men who do not have the seal of God on their foreheads. And they were not permitted to kill anyone, but to torment for five months; and their torment was like the torment of a scorpion when it stings a man. And in those days men will seek death and will not find it; they will long to die, and death flees from them. (Revelation 9:1-6 NASB)

    Then the fifth angel poured out his bowl on the throne of the beast, and his kingdom became darkened; and they gnawed their tongues because of pain, and they blasphemed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores; and they did not repent of their deeds. (Revelation 16:10-11 NASB)

Sixth Trumpet / Sixth Bowl
At the Sixth Trumpet, four angels who are bound at the great river Euphrates are released. The fire and the smoke and the brimstone which comes out of the mouths of the armies of the horsemen killed a third of mankind (9: 15-18). At the sixth bowl the great river Euphrates is dried up, and three demonic spirits go out to the kings of the whole world to gather them together for the final battle of Armageddon.

    Then the sixth angel sounded, and I heard a voice from the four horns of the golden altar which is before God, one saying to the sixth angel who had the trumpet, "Release the four angels who are bound at the great river Euphrates." And the four angels, who had been prepared for the hour and day and month and year, were released, so that they would kill a third of mankind. (Revelation 9:13-15 NASB)

    The sixth angel poured out his bowl on the great river, the Euphrates; and its water was dried up, so that the way would be prepared for the kings from the east. And I saw coming out of the mouth of the dragon and out of the mouth of the beast and out of the mouth of the false prophet, three unclean spirits like frogs; for they are spirits of demons, performing signs, which go out to the kings of the whole world, to gather them together for the war of the great day of God, the Almighty. (Revelation 16:12-14 NASB)

Seventh Trumpet / Seventh Bowl
The Seventh Trumpet marks the end of the age... the consummation of all the other Trumpets. At its sounding, the temple of God in heaven opens revealing the ark of His covenant, which is accompanied by flashes of lightning, peals of thunder, an earthquake, and a great hailstorm. The Seventh Bowl marks consummation ("It is done," 16:15) and is also marked by lightning, thunder, and hundred pound hail. Very importantly, an earthquake of a magnitude never before seen, will once and for all bring Babylon, the "great city" down. (See Two Babylons)

    Then the seventh angel sounded; and there were loud voices in heaven, saying, "The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ; and He will reign forever and ever." .... And the temple of God which is in heaven was opened; and the ark of His covenant appeared in His temple, and there were flashes of lightning and sounds and peals of thunder and an earthquake and a great hailstorm. (Revelation 11:15, 19 NASB)

    Then the seventh angel poured out his bowl upon the air, and a loud voice came out of the temple from the throne, saying, "It is done." And there were flashes of lightning and sounds and peals of thunder; and there was a great earthquake, such as there had not been since man came to be upon the earth, so great an earthquake was it, and so mighty. The great city was split into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell. Babylon the great was remembered before God, to give her the cup of the wine of His fierce wrath. And every island fled away, and the mountains were not found. And huge hailstones, about one hundred pounds each, *came down from heaven upon men; and men blasphemed God because of the plague of the hail, because its plague *was extremely severe. (Revelation 16:17-21 NASB)


Nuclear Weapons In The End Times?
The following is excerpted from an article by Dr. David R. Reagan of Lamb & Lion Ministries...

The book of Revelation talks about the poisoning of the oceans, the burning up of the grass and the trees, and the sun scorching people with great heat. It also tells us that horrible plagues will afflict mankind, that there will be widespread wars and famines, and that the atmosphere will become so polluted as to reduce visibility by one third. In the midst of all this devastation, the earth's population will flee to the caves, as people cry to the mountains and rocks, "Fall on us and hide us from the face of Him who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb!" (Revelation 6:16).

There are three possible sources of the kind of devastation portrayed above.

    1) It is brought about supernaturally by God Himself without any other possible explanation. Until the nuclear age this was the primary view, as it was hard to see how such a scenario could be brought about by natural human means. In the Old Testament we find God killing 185,000 of Israel's enemies by one angel, without any natural explanation. If one angel can wipe out that many people, it should not be too much trouble for all the hosts of God's angelic armies to destroy three quarters of the earth's population.

    2) The disturbances are created by a comet whose path leads it uncomfortably close to the earth. Global earthquakes and tidal waves, resulting in famines on an unprecedented scale would almost certainly be the result. Some, but probably not all, of these judgments could be brought about this way.

    3) A nuclear holocaust. In other words God simply steps back and allows man to blow himself up in which case the plagues and judgments seen and described by John, are a first century man's description of a thermonuclear war. John did not use terms like "nuclear weapons, ICBM's, or fractional orbital bombs", but described things like "hail and fire," "a great mountain burning with fire," and "a great star . . . burning like a torch." This is what we would expect of a first century man, describing things he had no knowledge of in the only terms he knew to use.

The sun becoming black as sackcloth and the moon becoming like blood perfectly describes the phenomena that would result from massive amounts of dust and debris blown into the sky by multiple nuclear bursts.

    Revelation 6:14 says And the atmosphere was pushed apart like a scroll when it is rolled together" In a nuclear explosion the atmosphere literally rolls back on itself. A tremendous rush of air back into the vacuum that causes much of the destruction of a nuclear explosion. John's words in this verse are a perfect picture of an all-out nuclear exchange... The whole world will be literally shaken apart!

    Zechariah 14:12 says "Now this will be the plague with which the Lord will strike all the peoples who have gone to war against Jerusalem; their flesh will rot while they stand on their feet, and their eyes will rot in their sockets, and their tongue will rot in their mouth."

Certainly the poisoning of the waters (Revelation 8:11), the severe reduction in visibility (Revelation 8:12), the death of much of the earth's vegetation (Revelation 8:7), malignant sores (Revelation 16:2), the end of ocean life (Revelation 16:3), and the inability of the atmosphere to block out harmful ultraviolet rays, resulting in severe burns (Revelation 16:8) are all expected results of nuclear war. [01]

This is a very real possibility but nothing we can know with absolute certainty.

 

Endnotes
[01] Dr. David R. Reagan. Nuclear Weapons in the End Times...Does the Bible predict a nuclear holocaust?
http://www.lamblion.com/articles/articles_tribulation5.php

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