Part 022 – The sixth and the seventh Trumpet and Vial Judgments

The Book of REVELATION

A Study

Part 022

The sixth and the seventh Trumpet and Vial Judgments

Following the sounding of the first five trumpets and the pouring out of the first five vials, the kingdom of Antichrist is seen in complete disarray, awaiting destruction. This destruction is seen in the sounding of the sixth trumpet and the pouring out of the sixth vial. Then the sounding of the seventh trumpet and the pouring out of the seventh vial brings matters to a complete end, announcing the finality of that which has been accomplished.

The Sixth Trumpet (Rev.9:13-21) and the Sixth Vial (Rev.16:12-16)

Both the sixth trumpet and the sixth vial have to do with THE GREAT RIVER EUPHRATES. When the sixth angel sounded his trumpet, the command went out, “Loose the four angels which are bound in the great river Euphrates.” These four angels are said to have been “prepared for an hour, and a day, and a month, and a year, for to slay a third part of men. Then the four angels are seen in connection with an army of two hundred million, with this army seen as the entity actually responsible for slaying “the third part of men.”

When an angel poured out the sixth vial upon the great river Euphrates, the water of the Euphrates was dried up, that the way of the kings of the east might be prepared.” Then three unclean spirits which originate from Satan, the beast and the false prophet, go forth to gather “the kings of the earth and of the whole world… to the battle of that great day of God Almighty” to Armageddon [meaning, ‘the Mount of Megiddo]. On Satan’s part, they will be gathered to the land of Israel in order to destroy a repented, regathered and restored people (the Jews) and their King (the Lord Jesus Christ) in their midst. On the Lord’s part, the military leaders and armies of an already decimated kingdom will be brought into the land of Israel in order to themselves be destroyed.

The sequence of events

The correct sequence of events can be clearly seen in OT typology, the Prophets and the Jewish festivals of Lev.23. At the end of the Tribulation, Christ will return, when the unrepentant Jewish people are still scattered among the nations, going through unbearable sufferings. The Jewish people, at their wits’ end, will have no other place to turn to, but to their Messiah in true repentance and faith. Christ will then send His angels out to gather His people back to their Land (Matt.24:30, 31). Then, the armies of the earth will be gathered into the Middle East. And once they have been gathered, Christ, beginning His march into battle from the Mount of Olives, will go forth and destroy these invading armies, delivering His people (Zech.14:1-9).

Symbolism used in the Sixth Trumpet and Sixth Vial judgments

The four angels were being held for a particular mission which was to occur at a previously set time, and this would be in accordance with the manner in which God acts ― at set times which He Himself has previously established. The three demonic spirits seen when the sixth vial is poured out, are to go out into all the world and gather the kings of the earth, with their armies, into the Middle East. “Four” is a number showing the extent of their mission ― the four corners of the earth. And “three” has to do with a counterfeit Divine perfection. These three demonic spirits, (1) coming “out of the mouth of the dragon” ― Satan, who sought to be as God (Rev.12:9; Isa.14:13, 14), (2) “out of the mouth of the beast” ― Antichrist, who will declare himself to be God (2Thess.2:4) and (3) “out of the mouth of the false prophet” ― who will direct all worship toward the Beast (Rev.13:12). The Euphrates River forms a natural divide between the Promised Land and the nations beyond (Gen.15:18-21). In a metaphorical sense, this great river and its drying up undoubtedly refers to the removal of anything which would hinder various Gentile armies from moving into the Middle East. These armies are seen as horsemen wearing breastplates of fiery red, hyacinth blue and sulfur yellow and they are riding on horses having heads as lions, with fire, smoke and brimstone issuing forth from their mouths. These horses are also seen to have tails like serpents, with heads on their tails. All is an apparent reference to the vast array of modern-day weapons of warfare which will climatically lead to a horrific and unimaginable scene of judgment, bloodshed and death.

The battle of Armageddon

Armies numbering two hundred million are seen led into the land of Israel to a particular place called Armageddon. The number two hundred million literally means “two myriads of myriads” and the word “myriads” would refer to a large indefinite number (Luke 12:1; Heb.12:22; Jude 14). And the number “two” used in connection with the myriads of myriads is possibly a reference to the two directions in which the armies would be brought into the land of Israel ― from the north and from the south. “Armageddon” a word derived from two Hebrew words (har Megiddo) meaning “Mount of Megiddo” will apparently be the central point for this battle. But the battle field will be spread over very vast areas beyond this point ― note that blood from this battle is going to run even “up to the horses’ bridles, for one thousand six hundred furlongs” (Rev.14:20). And this battle ― God’s Son treading the winepress, “alone” ― will extend all the way down to Edom (Isa.63:1-6). Thus, is it any wonder that the Spirit of God has gone to great lengths to describe this climatic scene, through the use of numerous metaphors, when the sixth trumpet sounds and the sixth vial is poured out?

The Seventh Trumpet (Rev.11:15-19) and the Seventh Vial (Rev.16:17-21)

Once all the judgments of the seven sealed scroll have been brought to pass, matters will be exactly as described when the seventh trumpet sounds and the seventh vial is poured out: And the seventh angel sounded; and there followed great [loud] voices in heaven, and they said, “The kingdom of the world is become the kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ: and He shall reign forever and ever” (Rev.11:15, ASV). And the seventh angel poured out his vial into the air; and there came a great [loud] voice out of the temple of heaven, saying, “It is done” (Rev.16:17). The full measure of God’s judgment will have fallen upon the final form of the kingdom of Babylon; Israel will have been brought to the place of repentance and belief; the inheritance will have been fully redeemed, the bride will have become the Lamb’s wife and the kingdom will have become that “of our Lord, and of his Christ.”

A rainbow (Rev.10:1)

A rainbow, as first seen after the flood in Gen.9:13-16, appeared indicating completion of God’s judgment over all flesh, during the days of Noah. And the rainbow is used twice in the Book of Revelation (Rev.4:3; 10:1), after a similar manner in relation to judgment. The rainbow is seen in Rev.4:3, indicating the completion of judgment of all believers (Rev. chs.1-3) and the rainbow is seen again in Rev.10:1, indicating the completion of judgment of Israel and the nations (Rev. chs.6-19). In both cases, judgment will be over at this point. Through the first judgment, the bride will have been made known, and through the second judgment Israel will have been brought to the place of repentance, the inheritance will have been redeemed, and the bride will have become the Lamb’s wife.