The Thomas Pages
– subject to continuing refinement –
S T U D Y    T E X T,    S E C T I O N   T H R E E
And when He opened the fifth seal, I saw underneath the altar the lives of those slaughtered for the word of God and for the witness they held.
'under the altar'= life-sacrifice representatively completed (as the ash under the altar)
And they cried with a loud voice, saying,
'Until when, holy and true Master,
do You not judge and avenge our blood on those dwelling on the earth?'
We are reminded that as Abel's blood cried for justice their suffering calls for justice!
And to each one was given a white robe, and it was said to them that, for a little time, they should rest until their fellow-slaves and brothers who are to be killed as they were should be fulfilled.
We are reminded that God does not intervene until His appointed time.
And I saw when he opened the sixth seal, and a great earthquake occurred, and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the whole moon became as blood; and the stars of heaven fell to the earth, as a fig tree throws its unripe figs when being shaken by a strong wind. And the heaven departed as a scroll being rolled up, and every mountain and island moved out of their places.
And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the generals, and the rich, and the strong, and every slave and freeman, hid themselves in the caves and in the rocks of the mountains; and "they said to the mountains" and to the rocks,
'"Fall on us," and hide us from the face of the One sitting on the throne
and from the wrath of the little Lamb:
for the great day of their wrath is come; and who can stand?'
Hosea 10:8
After this I saw four angels standing on the four corners of the earth, holding the four winds of the earth in order that wind should not blow on the earth, nor on the sea, nor on any tree.
And I saw another angel coming up from the rising of the sun, having a seal of the living God, and he cried with a loud voice to the four angels to whom it was given to harm the earth and the sea, saying,
'Do not harm the earth, nor the sea, nor the trees,
until we seal the slaves of our God on their foreheads'.
Judgment upon the world held back until the people of God are sealed in understanding their spiritual identity!
And I heard the number of those sealed, a hundred and forty-four thousand, sealed out of every* tribe of the children of Israel:
12 X 12 X 1000 =
the full number of God's people
Of the tribe of Judah twelve thousand sealed; 
Of the tribe of Reuben twelve thousand;
Of the tribe of Gad twelve thousand; 
Of the tribe of Asher twelve thousand;
Of the tribe of Naphtali twelve thousand; 
Of the tribe of Manasseh twelve thousand;
Of the tribe of Simeon twelve thousand; 
Of the tribe of Levi twelve thousand;
Of the tribe of Issachar twelve thousand; 
Of the tribe of Zebulun twelve thousand;
Of the tribe of Joseph twelve thousand; 
Of the tribe of Benjamin twelve thousand sealed.
*The absence of Dan and inclusion of two tribes whom God disinherited from their own part in the Promised Land (Simeon & Levi) indicates the symbolic nature of this list. The number 12 represents God's goverment – as in the 12 months of the year. Hence, God's promise to Abraham of 12 princes from Ishmael (Gen.17:20).
See meaning of '144,000'
After these things I saw, and see, a great crowd, which no one could number, out of every nation and tribe and people and language, standing before the throne and before the little Lamb, clothed in white robes, and palms in their hands; and they cry with a loud voice, saying,
'Salvation to our God sitting on the throne, and to the little Lamb'.
And all the angels were standing round the throne, and the Seniors and the four Animals; and they fell before the throne on their faces, and worshipped God, saying,
Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, and thanks, and honour, and power, and strength,
to our God forever and ever.
And one of the Seniors answered, saying to me,
'These that are clothed in white robes, who are they, and where did they come from?'
And I said to him,
'My lord, you know.'
And he told me,
'These are those coming out of the great suffering,
and they washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the little Lamb.
Therefore are they before the throne of God; and serve Him day and night in His shrine:
and the One sitting on the throne shall spread His tent over them.
They shall no longer hunger, nor will they thirst any longer;
neither shall the sun strike them, nor any heat:
because the little Lamb in the midst of the throne will shepherd them,
and will lead them to springs of living waters;
and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.'
And when He opened the seventh seal, a silence occurred in Heaven, about a half-hour.
The Scroll, God's inheritance deed,
is now about to be opened!
And I saw the seven angels who stood before God, and seven trumpets were given to them.
And another angel came and stood over the altar, having a golden censer; and much incense was given to him , that he should add it to the prayers of all the saints on the golden altar before the throne. And the smoke of the incense, with the prayers of the saints, went up out of the angel's hand before God.
A reminder to us that now the cry of the Fifth Seal may be answered in judgment of the earth.
And the angel took the censer, and filled it from the fire of the altar, and threw it into the earth: and there occurred thunders, and sounds, and lightnings, and an earthquake.
And the seven angels having the seven trumpets prepared themselves to trumpet.
The judgment of the earth now begins!
And the first trumpeted; and there occurred hail and fire mixed with blood, and it was thrown into the earth;
and a third of the earth was burnt up, and a third of the trees were burnt up, and all grass was burnt up.
– on the land –
And the second angel trumpeted; and as it were 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 with life died in the sea; and a third of the ships were destroyed.
– on the sea –
And the third angel trumpeted; and a great star fell out of heaven, burning as a lamp, fell onto a third of the rivers, and onto the springs of waters; and 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.
– on the water supply –
And the fourth angel trumpeted; 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 might be darkened, and a third of the day might not appear, and the night likewise.
And I saw:
  and I heard one eagle flying in mid-heaven, saying with a loud voice,
'Woe! Woe! Woe, to those dwelling on the earth,
by reason of the remaining sounds of the trumpet of the three angels who are yet to trumpet.'
eagle = ἀετός = vulture
(same word as in Matt.24:28; Lk.17:37).


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