Part 023 – The Opened Scroll

The Book of REVELATION

A Study

Part 023

The Opened Scroll (Rev.10:1-7)

God declares the decree

The scene portrayed in Rev.10:1-7, displays the grandeur in which God has chosen to announce the completion of 6000 years of redemptive work. And this is the manner in which God has chosen to “declare the decree” seen in Psalm 2:5-7, “Then shall He speak unto them in His wrath [speak unto the Gentile nations coming against restored Israel and Israel’s King in Jerusalem in Psa.2:1-3] and vex them in His sore displeasure. Yet have I set My King upon My holy hill of Zion. I will declare the decree: the Lord hath said unto Me, Thou art My Son this day have I begotten Thee [brought His Son forth in the sense seen in the text, placing Him on the throne in Jerusalem].”

A strong angel and a sealed scroll

A seven-sealed scroll was introduced by a strong angel with a loud voice in Revelation chapter five. This sealed scroll contained the complete redemptive terms for the inheritance, the earth. Within the scope of these redemptive terms – these judgments – there were three sets of sevens: seven seals, seven trumpets, and seven vials. The seven trumpets and seven seals are shown to be emanating from the seventh seal. The sounding of the seven trumpets and the pouring out of the seven vials formed different descriptions of the same judgments and must be studied in the light of one another (see Part 21 and Part 22 of this study). And both (the trumpets and the vials) together form additional commentary for that already seen when the first six seals of the scroll are broken. And that is especially true when viewing how the whole of the matter is brought to a terminal point, depicted by both the sounding of the seventh trumpet and the pouring out of the seventh vial. Both bring matters to the same terminal point (Rev.10:5-7; 11:5; 16:17). The seven-year Tribulation, along with immediately following events which usher in the Messianic Kingdom, will be over at this point in the book.

The mighty angel and the opened scroll

And now, Revelation chapter ten, another “mighty angel” comes down from heaven, clothed with “a cloud:” and “a rainbow” was upon his head, and his face was “as it were the sun,” and his feet as “pillars of fire,” and he had in his hand a little book [scroll] open: and he set his right foot upon the sea, and his left foot on the earth, and cried with “a loud voice, as when a lion roareth…” The angel… “lifted up his hand to heaven…” and when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the prophets (Rev.10:1-7). Then, the same thing is seen in Rev.16:17, when a seventh angel poured out the seventh vial of wrath, a great voice came out of the temple in heaven saying, “It is done!” The whole of the matter will be over when this mighty angel comes down, “lifted up his hand to heaven” (evidently the hand holding the opened scroll, with all of the seals broken [Rev.5:1, 7], showing the One in heaven that the entire matter has been finished; the complete redemptive terms contained in the scroll has been fulfilled. The whole of the matter will be over when this “mighty angel” places “his right foot upon the sea and his left foot on the earth [indicating complete dominance and control of the redeemed inheritance]” (Dan.7:13, 14).

The events

The events in Revelation chapters 7, 11a, 12-14 and 17-19, simply form commentary concerning events occurring during the time of the judgments of the seals, the trumpets and the vials. We shall take up the study of these events in the upcoming parts of this study.

Bitterness as well as sweetness associated with the scroll

Then, the end of the matter ― there is a bitterness as well as sweetness associated with the scroll (Rev.10:8-10). What is said here about the scroll is exactly same in relation to what “…He declared to His servants the prophets” (Rev.10:7) beginning with Moses and continuing in the Psalms and Prophets. The bitterness is seen in the continuous references to Israel’s unrepentant condition and the anger of God and the punishing judgments falling upon them. Then, we also see the mention of the end result ― the nation’s repentance, referred to as sweetness; and the Messianic Era ushered in.

Bitterness as well as sweetness associated with all the prophets

Isaiah begins his prophecy, presenting Israel in the unrepentant state (Isa.1:4-24) but he then calls attention to a future day when repentance will occur, with the Messianic Era being ushered in (Isa.1:25 – 2:5). And at the outset, this tells the reader what the whole book of Isaiah is about. And not merely Isaiah, but the prophecies of all the prophets from Isaiah to Malachi are structured in the same pattern. Jeremiah begins his prophecy (Jer.1 – 29) with the unrepentant condition of Israel. But then matters change, and the Lord begins to tell His people what He will one day do following their repentance (Jer.30, 31). Ezekiel begins his prophecy with the bitterness of continuous references to sin, idolatry and uncleanness of Israel; then ends with Israel ultimately being brought to the place of repentance (Ezek.36 – 39), referred to as sweetness; and with the Messianic Era ushered in. This message of bitterness and sweetness in relation to Israel is the central message of all the prophets as well as the Book of Revelation.