THE OPENING OF THE SEALS
Here in the 6th chapter we see the breaking of the 7 seals.
Now, here in chapter 6 we see the Lamb breaking 6 of the 7 seals that sealed the book and as He does so we see the beginning of the end of the book.
Now, keep in mind that this is a vision and a lot of what is expressed here is expressed in symbols and symbolic language.
Remember that this book is a book of prophecy and prophecy always warns of a coming judgment….and it always deals with the situation that is going on at the time.
So, look at verse 1.
And I saw when the Lamb broke one of the seven seals, and I heard one of the four living creatures saying as with a voice of thunder, “Come.”
2 And I looked, and behold, a white horse, and he who sat on it had a bow; and a crown was given to him; and he went out conquering, and to conquer.
Notice the “white horse”.
This rider has a crown given to him.
And He says that He had a bow.
Then the verse says that this rider goes “out conquering and to conquer.”
Now verse 3: “And when He broke the second seal, I heard the second living creature say “Come.”
“And another, a red horse, went out; and to him who sat on it, it was granted to take peace from the earth, and that men should slay one another; and a great sword was given to him.”
In verse 5 we see a description of economic hardship. Look what He says:
“And when He broke the third seal, I heard the living creature saying, “Come.” And I looked, and behold, a black horse; and he who sat on it had a pair of scales in his hand.
“And I heard as it were a voice in the center of the four living creatures saying, “A quart of wheat for a denarius, and three quarts of barley for a denarius; and do not harm the oil and wine.”
Economic hardship could cause the people to revolt against the authorities and the government…and this too would aid in the decline of the Roman Empire.
And notice, He says: “Do not harm the oil and the wine.”
7 And when He broke the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature saying, “Come.” 8 And I looked, and behold, an ashen horse (sickly pale, yellowy green); and he who sat on it had the name Death; and Hades (Hades…the grave. The abode of disembodied spirits. Death slays, Hades reaps) was following with him. And authority was given to them over a fourth (indication that this is not the final judgment) of the earth, to kill with sword (war) and with famine and with pestilence and by the wild beasts of the earth.
9 And when He broke the fifth seal, I saw underneath the altar the souls of those who had been slain because of the word of God, and because of the testimony which they had maintained (faithful unto death. These Christians had died because of their faith); 10 and they cried out with a loud voice, saying, “How long, O Lord, holy and true, wilt Thou refrain from judging and avenging our blood on those who dwell on the earth?”
11 And there was given to each of them a white robe(spiritually clean, pure); and they were told that they should rest for a little while longer (the persecution is not over yet), until the number of their fellow servants and their brethren who were to be killed even as they had been, should be completed also.
12 And I looked when He broke the sixth seal, and there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth made of hair, and the whole moon became like blood; 13 and the stars of the sky fell to the earth, as a fig tree casts its unripe figs when shaken by a great wind. 14 And the sky was split apart like a scroll when it is rolled up; and every mountain and island were moved out of their places.
15 And the kings of the earth and the great men and the commanders and the rich and the strong and every slave and free man, hid themselves in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains; 16 and they said to the mountains and to the rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the presence of Him who sits on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb;
There will be no place to hide when God comes in judgment.
17 for the great day of their wrath has come; and who is able to stand? ”
Chapter 6 speaks of the coming judgment on the Roman Empire.
Second: Anybody who touches God’s people touches the apple of His eye…and those people will answer to God for it.