Revelation: Chapter 16

In Revelation 14, we saw God’s reluctant, but final decision to close the gates of heaven to any further entrants. In His great foreknowledge, God knows that every unbeliever alive on the earth at that time will have hardened his heart against the Gospel and will never come to Him. Therefore, He prepares to release the final judgments on the earth.

The Bowls of Wrath

Revelation 16:1 - This verse depicts a great voice booming out of the smoke-filled temple. This voice gave the seven angels orders to pour out the bowls of wrath that had been given to them.

Bowl No. 1

Revelation 16:2 - “There fell a foul and painful sore open on those who had received the mark of the beast and who worshiped his image.” This sore will be worse than anything man has ever experienced. It will be so foul and painful that cancer and leprosy will be trivial by comparison. No known drug will cure these sores. Even the Antichrist with his supernatural abilities will not be able to cure these malignancies. On the other hand, God will supernaturally protect the believers from this horrible plague. “Be not deceived, God is not mocked.” Compare this with the plague of boils in Exodus 9:8-11.

Bowl No. 2

Revelation 16:3 - “The sea became like the blood of a dead man.” In essence, the waters congeal like blood and every living creature that lived therein died. In Rev. 8, only a third of the sea became blood and only a third of the marine life died. In this judgment, all marine life is going to be wiped out. The whole earth will be affected. Sea transportation will be paralyzed. The former series of judgments (seals & trumpets) have increased gradually in measured progression. In the bowl judgments, all the stops are out.

Bowl No. 3

Revelation: Chapter 9

Revelation 9 begins a new phase of God’s dealings with men. He now begins to pour out His great wrath on unrepentant sinners and Christ’s rejections. Rev. 6:17, “For the great day of His wrath is come, and who shall be able to stand.” The angel of Rev. 8:13 introduces these as “Woes.”

The Fallen Star (Revelation 9:1-12)

The Fifth Trumpet

“And the fifth angel blew his trumpet, and I beheld a star fall from heaven unto the earth.” The identity of this star is obscured a little in the language of our King James Version. The star is described more accurately in other translations as “fallen,” rather than “falling.” It is written in the perfect tense, which signifies an already completed action. The star had already fallen.

That this is not a literal star is obvious from the fact that “to him was given the key of the bottomless pit.” I believe that the star mentioned here is “Satan himself.” Rev. 12 describes the war in the heavens and Satan and his angels being cast upon the earth (chronologically this has already happened). So then, what we have here, at the blowing of the fifth trumpet, is Satan in possession of the key of the Abyss. 

Satan and The Bottomless Pit

The key to the bottomless pit (or Abyss) really belongs to the Lord Jesus Christ. See Rev. 1:18, “I am He that liveth, and was dead; and behold, I am alive forevermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.” The keys of the “bottomless pit” belong to Jesus Christ, but He gives them to Satan at this time.

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