Revelation 10

Sunday, May 17th, 2015

THE MIGHTY ANGEL

INTRODUCTION:

Revelation of Jesus Christ 10:1-11:14 (from the sixth trumpet judgment to the seventh trumpet judgment) is parenthetical. These verses form an interlude between the sixth and seventh trumpet judgments. This section does not advance the narrative of Revelation.

Similarly, chapter 7 forms an interlude between the sixth and seventh seal judgments.

I. THE MIGHTY ANGEL AND THE SEVEN THUNDERS - 10:1-4

Revelation of Jesus Christ 10:1-4 - (1) And I saw another mighty angel come down from heaven, clothed with a cloud: and a rainbow was upon his head, and his face was as it were the sun, and his feet as pillars of fire: (2) And he had in his hand a little book open: and he set his right foot upon the sea, and his left foot on the earth, (3) And cried with a loud voice, as when a lion roareth: and when he had cried, seven thunders uttered their voices. (4) And when the seven thunders had uttered their voices, I was about to write: and I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Seal up those things which the seven thunders uttered, and write them not.

Another angel is another angel of the same kind. It is a different angel, but it is an angel of the same kind as the strong angel in Revelation of Jesus Christ 5:2 .

Revelation of Jesus Christ 5:2 - And I saw a strong angel proclaiming with a loud voice, Who is worthy to open the book, and to loose the seals thereof?

The word translated strong in Revelation of Jesus Christ 5:2 is the same word translated mighty in this verse. Mighty is strong or powerful.

Although some have identified this mighty angel with Christ, the use of another (of the same sort) to describe him as an angel does not allow this.

Come down from heaven is coming down out of heaven or descending out of heaven and indicates that its action was going on as John was looking.

From heaven is out of heaven and indicates that this angel had been in heaven and was seen descending to the earth.

Not only was this mighty angel seen descending out of heaven, but he was also seen to be clothed with a cloud.

The tense of clothed indicates that its action had already taken place before John saw this angel. The angel had been previously clothed and was already in a state of having been clothed by the time John saw him.

With a cloud indicates the covering which had been put around this angel as if it were his clothing.

And a rainbow was upon his head.

Upon his head suggests upon the angel's head.

And his face was as it were the sun suggests that this angel's face was very bright, too bright to look upon.

His face is his countenance and refers to the appearance of his face.

As it were is simply as or just as, but it has been translated in which indicates that it was not really the sun John saw but that John was simply trying to express its brightness in everyday terms his readers would understand.

The sun is very bright, and things are often compared to it for brightness.

And his feet as pillars of fire suggests that his feet appeared as if they were actually burning. As such they would have had a reddish or reddish-orange appearance.

Revelation of Jesus Christ 10:2 And he had in his hand a little book open: and he set his right foot upon the sea, and his left foot on the earth.

And he had [i.e. the mighty angel was holding] in his hand a little book open.

The tense of open indicates that this book was already opened before John saw it.

The contents of the little book are not revealed.

And he set [the mighty angel put (or placed)] his right foot upon the sea, and his left foot on the earth [or land].

His right foot upon the sea and His left foot on the earth [i.e. on the land] implies a position of authority over the entire earth.

Revelation of Jesus Christ 10:3 And cried with a loud voice, as when a lion roareth: and when he had cried, seven thunders uttered their voices.

And cried [i.e. the mighty angel called or the mighty angel called out] with a loud voice, as when a lion roareth.

With a loud voice is literally with a great voice.

As when a lion roareth is just as a lion roars and provides a comparison to show how loud the angel had cried or called out. Anyone who has been in the lion house at a zoo at feeding time has heard just how loudly a lion can roar.

And when he had cried, seven thunders uttered their voices.

When he had cried means when the mighty angel called or called out. The inclusion of had with cried suggests that the mighty angel cried or called out immediately before the seven thunders uttered their voices.

The appears before seven thunders in the Greek text and implies that the sum total of all the thunders that existed crashed or sounded at this same time. This is further substantiated by the use of the number seven, which suggests perfection or completion.

When used of inanimate things such as thunders, uttered means sounded or gave forth.

What the seven thunders uttered was their voices, i.e. their own voices.

Voices, when used of people, suggests their speaking voices; but when used of noises, means sounds, tones, or noises. All of a sudden, the sum total of all the thunders in existence made a lot of noise. It was very dramatic.

Uttered their voices is a personification of the seven thunders as if the seven thunders were people.

Revelation of Jesus Christ 10:4 And when the seven thunders had uttered their voices, I was about to write: and I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Seal up those things which the seven thunders uttered, and write them not.

And when the seven thunders had uttered their voices refers to what John heard in verse 3. The words used are the same as in verse 3 and have the same meaning.

I was about to write suggests that John was getting set to begin writing but that he had not yet begun writing.

And I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me indicates that John heard this verse, and it stopped him from writing before he ever started.

From heaven is literally out of heaven and indicates that heaven was the source of the voice he heard.

Saying unto me indicates that the voice was speaking to John personally.

What the voice said was, Seal up those things which the seven thunders uttered, and write them not.

The tense of seal up indicates that this action was to be done at once and without delay.

What John was to seal up was those things which [i.e. what (things)] the seven thunders uttered. It means that no one was to learn the content of the things which the seven thunders uttered. There are some things God does not want us to know.

The tense and mood of write, when combined with not, implies that John was not even to begin to write these things or that he was never to write these things.

II. THE ANNOUNCEMENT OF THE END OF THE AGE - 10:5-7

Revelation of Jesus Christ 10:5-7 - (5) And the angel which I saw stand upon the sea and upon the earth [i.e. upon the land] lifted up his hand to heaven, (6) And sware by him that liveth for ever and ever, who created heaven, and the things that therein are, and the earth, and the things that therein are, and the sea, and the things which are therein, that there should be time no longer: (7) But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the prophets.

The angel which I saw stand upon the sea and upon the earth refers to the mighty angel introduced in verse 1. In verse 2 it was said that He placed his right foot on the sea but his left foot on the earth (or land).

The tense of stand indicates that its action has occurred in the past and that its result was continuing. It indicates that the angel was in a state of already having stood and that he was still standing when John saw him.

Lifted up his hand to heaven (or raised his hand to heaven) suggests that he was gesturing in the direction of God the Father Who was seated upon the throne.

Revelation of Jesus Christ 10:6 And sware by him that liveth for ever and ever, who created heaven, and the things that therein are, and the earth, and the things that therein are, and the sea, and the things which are therein, that there should be time no longer.

Sware indicates that the angel swore in the sense of took an oath.

By him that liveth for ever and ever is by God the Father. This oath was based on the person of God the Father, the highest authority in the universe. By him that liveth for ever and ever means that there has never been a time when He was not living and there never will be a time when He will not be living.

Who created heaven, and the things that therein are, and the earth, and the things that therein are, and the sea, and the things which are therein refers to God the Father's bringing things into existence which had not previously existed. He made them out of nothing.

He created heaven. This could refer to God's abode, or it could refer to the stellar heavens. Inasmuch as heaven in the Greek text is singular, it seems to be a reference to His abode.

He also created the things that therein are, i.e. the things in heaven.

He also created the earth, and the things that therein are, i.e. the earth and the things in it, i.e. the things in the earth.

God also created the sea, and the things which are therein, i.e. the sea and the things in the sea.

What the mighty angel swore is that there should be time no longer, i.e. that time shall not yet be. Does this mean that time will cease to exist? Or, does it mean that there will be no more delay for God's judgment in all its fullness to fall upon the earth? The context demands that it means that the time for God's judgment has come and that there will be no more delay.

Revelation of Jesus Christ 10:7 But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the prophets.

But introduces a statement in strong contrast to there should be time no longer.

In the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound refers to the time when the seventh angel will sound the seventh trumpet.

In the days of the voice of the seventh angel refers to the time when the seventh angel blows his trumpet.

When he shall begin to sound refers to the seventh angel and is whenever he (i.e. the seventh angel) is about to sound the trumpet or whenever he is about to trumpet forth. The fact that the seventh angel will sound the trumpet is clear, but the time of his sounding it is not yet clear to John although he knows it will be soon after the sixth trumpet is sounded.

He refers to the seventh angel, the one with the seventh trumpet.

The seventh angel sounds his trumpet in Revelation of Jesus Christ 11:15 , and it includes everything which occurs through Revelation of Jesus Christ 19:21 .

Revelation of Jesus Christ 11:15 - And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.

We return to Revelation of Jesus Christ 10:7

The mystery of God should be finished also goes with the word when or whenever.

The mystery of God refers to the idea that God the Father has concealed some truth or truths in the past but has now revealed them. In this context the particular mystery referred to is God's bringing to completion His judgments upon the world during the great tribulation.

Should be finished is should be completed.

As he [i.e. just as God the Father] hath declared to his servants the prophets introduces a comparison with the completion of the mystery of God.

He hath declared is he announced good news or he has announced good news. It is the same word translated evangelized in the context of announcing the good news of salvation. It has been translated in a way which emphasizes the result of its action.

To his servants is to his slaves and refers to some who had voluntarily enslaved themselves to Him and His service.

The prophets makes it clear to which servants He has announced this good news that His mystery should be finished or completed.

III. THE EATING OF THE LITTLE BOOK - 10:8-11

Revelation of Jesus Christ 10:8-11 - (8) And the voice which I heard from heaven spake unto me again, and said, Go and take the little book which is open in the hand of the angel which standeth upon the sea and upon the earth. (9) And I went unto the angel, and said unto him, Give me the little book. And he said unto me, Take it, and eat it up; and it shall make thy belly bitter, but it shall be in thy mouth sweet as honey. (10) And I took the little book out of the angel's hand, and ate it up; and it was in my mouth sweet as honey: and as soon as I had eaten it, my belly was bitter. (11) And he said unto me, Thou must prophesy again before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings.

In verse 4, John heard a voice from heaven saying unto him, Seal up those things which the seven thunders uttered, and write them not.

The voice which I heard from heaven indicates again that heaven was the source of this voice.

It is the same voice John had previously heard as spake unto me again suggests.

And said is and saying.

What this voice was saying is, Go and take the little book which is open in the hand of the angel which standeth upon the sea and upon the earth.

Go and take are both commandments directed to John.

What John was to take is the little book.

Which is open in the hand of the angel which standeth upon the sea and upon the earth makes it clear which little book the voice from heaven intended John to take.

Which is open is literally which is opened and indicates that it had been previously opened and remained in a state of having been opened.

In the hand of the angel refers to the mighty angel introduced in verse 1 and indicates the location of this little book.

Which standeth upon the sea and upon the earth refers to the fact that this mighty angel had set his right foot upon the sea and his left foot upon the land.

Revelation of Jesus Christ 10:9 And I went unto the angel, and said unto him, Give me the little book. And he said unto me, Take it, and eat it up; and it shall make thy belly bitter, but it shall be in thy mouth sweet as honey.

In verse 8 John had been commanded to go and take the little book which the mighty angel had in his possession. In this verse John obeys this directive. And I went unto the angel indicates John's obedience to the first command in verse 8.

Went unto the angel is went away to the angel. Of course, this is the mighty angel who is mentioned throughout this context.

And said unto him, Give me the little book.

And he [i.e. the mighty angel] said unto me introduces the mighty angel's response to John.

What the angel said to John is, Take it, and eat it up; and it shall make thy belly bitter, but it shall be in thy mouth sweet as honey.

Take it, and eat it up refers to the little book.

Eat it up is emphatic and means consume it or devour it, i.e. consume (or devour) the little book.

It shall make thy belly bitter suggests that the little book will upset John's stomach.

But introduces an emphatic contrast with making John's belly bitter.

It shall be in thy mouth sweet as honey suggests that it will really taste good in your mouth until you have swallowed it. It speaks of the word of God which John was to thoroughly digest. Some aspects of it, such as God's deliverance of His people, are sweet. Other aspects of it, however, such as God's judgment on the wicked and their being cast into the lake of fire, are bitter. We do not want to see anyone reject the gospel and go to hell, but we take delight in knowing that we have been saved and are on our way to heaven.

Revelation of Jesus Christ 10:10 And I took the little book out of the angel's hand, and ate it up; and it was in my mouth sweet as honey: and as soon as I had eaten it, my belly was bitter.

And I took the little book out of the angel's hand, and ate it up indicates that John did as he had been directed.

And it was in my mouth sweet as honey: and as soon as I had eaten it, my belly was bitter indicates that John experienced the things he had been told he would experience.

Had eaten has been translated in a way which emphasizes the result of its action.

My belly was bitter suggests my stomach became bitter.

Revelation of Jesus Christ 10:11 And he said unto me, Thou must prophesy again before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings.

And he said unto me may mean that the mighty angel said to John what follows or that the voice from heaven said this to John. Inasmuch as the mighty angel is the last one who had spoken to John, it is the better choice.

What he said unto John was, Thou must prophesy again before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings.

Thou must prophesy again is literally that you (John) prophesy again is necessary.

Before is understood in the sense of to.

John was to prophesy to many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings.

Many peoples suggests groups of people.

Nations suggests multiple countries.

Tongues is languages and kings suggests rulers.

How would John do this as a 90-year-old man who was confined to a very small island in the Mediterranean? He would do it by writing the rest of the chapters in Revelation.