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Evening Reading & Study (Revelation 6) "The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse Seals 1-6

"Revelation" - means to uncovering something that has been hidden. What's been hidden? How about in this case the "FINAL TRIUMPH" of the Kingdom of God.

Early Christians believed the Second Coming of Christ was near (Acts 2:16-17, Hebrews 1:1, and 1 John 2:18). St. John's vision here in Revelation was informing God's Church not to give into their adversaries and to hold fast in their faith.

According to the Introduction in the Orthodox Study Bible- The book of Revelation can be seen as prophecy addressing a greater amount of time distant from its era of composition, predicting actual future events, or an exposition of the ongoing relationships and conflicts between God and His Kingdom, humanity, and Satan. these three approaches are not contradictory but complementary; all are valid.

The Lamb opens the Seals- the descriptive signs from St. John seems to match those find in Matthew 24, Mark 13, and Luke 21.

Early Church School of Thought

In chapter 6, Christ opens the first seal. St. John sees Christ as a magnificent victor. In the Book of Revelation, only Christ is the victor (cf. Rev. 19:11; Jn. 16:33). Here the first rider must represent Christ, the Church with the Gospel ready to face the other coming catastrophic riders, who represent worldly powers. This is the theme of the whole Book of Revelation: the struggle of the Church and its victory over evil by the power of the blood of Christ. St. John sees three other demonic powers, in opposition to Christ, that bring grief to the world and to the Church. He dramatically envisions the struggle between the Church and its enemies in the form of wars. Natural catastrophes are depicted as punishment from God for the enemies of the Church. The same theme, the persecution of the Church and the punishment of the persecutors, is repeated in chapters 8-19, with different images.

Revelation 19:11: Christ on a White Horse

11 Now I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse. And He who sat on him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and makes war.

John 16:33: These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you[a]will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.”

Newer School of Thought- Rider 1 represents the Antichrist. Or a Global Government takeover giving birth for the rise of the Antichrist.

see the book of Zecheriah gives great imagery of the Four Horsemen (Zech 1:8-17, Zech 6:1-8).

- the first rider is representing a spirit of conquest. - Jeremiah 27:29; and Ezekiel 5:15

Jeremiah 27:29: These two sources speak of fierce divine judgement in the OT, which is brought by military power of adversaries. Jesus also taught that "Nation will rise against Nation" (Matthew 24). this most likely represents liberators of the oppressed people of God.

-The second rider is representing war, violence and lots of bloodshed, and death- with removal of peace from the earth. Jesus predicted there will be "wars and rumors of wars" (Matthew 24:6).

-The third rider- is representing famine and inflation, and with frequent wars.

-The fourth rider- is representing widespread human death, pale green is describing rotting flesh. Pestilences and starvation follow famine and warfare.

The fifth seal- the cry of the martyrs for vengeance is not seen as vindictive, but instead they are pleading to God to stop the persecution and bring in His consummation of His plans for the world. We see in v. 11 the martyrs are consoled by the "WHITE ROBE"- which is a Jewish symbol for resurrection from the dead. The white robe is also seen as a symbol of blessedness, good deeds, innocence, victory, purity, new and eternal life, "TRANSFIRGURATION"- a resurrected and glorified body, vesting in Christ. We also read that the martyrs are called to have patience until the fullness of their number is complete. See (v. 9)- The vision of the souls of the martyrs under the altar derives from OT practice of pouring blood (physical manifestation of the life of the soul) of sin offerings at the base of the altar of burnt offerings.

Historic Christians practices of building church buildings over tombs of martyrs and placing relics of saints in the altar when a church is consecrated and burying baptized people under the altar.

- The sixth Seal- This is representing cosmic disturbances that often accompany descriptions of "the day of the Lord"- the return of Christ (Joel 3:3, Matthew 24:29-30; and parallels). People in rebellion with God (see v. 15) and they are terror stricken before God's judgmental wrath.

- from my Orthodox Study Bible - Joel 3:3: "And I shall give wonders in the heavens and upon the earth, blood and fire and vapor of smoke."

Matthew 24:29-30: "The Coming of the Son of Man

29 “Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. 30 Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.

Numbers 6:24-26

“The Lord bless you and keep you;

25 The Lord make His face shine upon you,

And be gracious to you;

26 The Lord [a]lift up His countenance upon you,

And give you peace.” ’

In Christ love ❤️ Jared W Campbell

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