Revelation: Fifth and Sixth Trumpets

How do you picture the opening of the bottomless abyss?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending
Author’s Paraphrase
Revelation 9:1–2 With the fifth messenger’s trumpet blast, a star fell from the sky, and this star held the key to the bottomless abyss. When the abyss was opened, great smoke from the fiery furnace erupted and darkened the sky.
King James
Revelation 9:1–2 And the fifth angel sounded, and I saw a star fall from heaven unto the earth: and to him was given the key of the bottomless pit. And he opened the bottomless pit; and there arose a smoke out of the pit, as the smoke of a great furnace; and the sun and the air were darkened by reason of the smoke of the pit.

What gave the locusts their instinct and intelligence to harm only people who did not have a relationship with God?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending
Author’s Paraphrase
Revelation 9:3–5 Locusts descended from the smoke, having a venomous sting like scorpions. They were not allowed to harm life, not the grass, the trees, or any living thing—but they were to sting only people without a relationship with God, who did not have his seal upon their foreheads. Like the sting of a scorpion, the locusts were to inflict pain and suffering for five months, but not to kill anyone.
King James
Revelation 9:3–5 And there came out of the smoke locusts upon the earth: and unto them was given power, as the scorpions of the earth have power. And it was commanded them that they should not hurt the grass of the earth, neither any green thing, neither any tree; but only those men which have not the seal of God in their foreheads. And to them it was given that they should not kill them, but that they should be tormented five months: and their torment was as the torment of a scorpion, when he striketh a man.

What could keep people from dying when they wanted to?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending
Author’s Paraphrase
Revelation 9:6 In those days, the pain will be so great that people will wish they were dead, but death won’t come for them.
King James
Revelation 9:6 And in those days shall men seek death, and shall not find it; and shall desire to die, and death shall flee from them.

By what means would the nations have sought to eliminate the locusts? Why was that effort ineffective?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending
Author’s Paraphrase
Revelation 9:7–10 The locusts were like horses ready for battle, with human faces and golden crowns. Their hair was long and flowing, like a woman, and their teeth were sharp and cutting, like a lion. Their breastplates were hard as iron. In flight, their wings made the sound of many horses and chariots running to the battle. The locusts’ tails had scorpion-like stingers with venom to inflict pain for five months.
King James
Revelation 9:7–10 And the shapes of the locusts were like unto horses prepared unto battle; and on their heads were as it were crowns like gold, and their faces were as the faces of men. And they had hair as the hair of women, and their teeth were as the teeth of lions. And they had breastplates, as it were breastplates of iron; and the sound of their wings was as the sound of chariots of many horses running to battle. And they had tails like unto scorpions, and there were stings in their tails: and their power was to hurt men five months.

Who was the messenger from the bottomless abyss?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending
Author’s Paraphrase
Revelation 9:11 Their leader was the messenger from the bottomless abyss, whose name in Hebrew is Abaddon, or Apollyon in Greek.
King James
Revelation 9:11 And they had a king over them, which is the angel of the bottomless pit, whose name in the Hebrew tongue is Abaddon, but in the Greek tongue hath his name Apollyon.

Why were the four messengers at the Euphrates River released?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending
Author’s Paraphrase
Revelation 9:13–15 With the sixth messenger’s trumpet blast, a voice came from the four horns of the golden altar, which is before God, saying to the messenger, “Free the four messengers who are imprisoned at the great Euphrates River.” The four messengers were set free, appointed at that particular month, day, and hour to kill a third of humankind.
King James
Revelation 9:13–15 And the sixth angel sounded, and I heard a voice from the four horns of the golden altar which is before God, Saying to the sixth angel which had the trumpet, Loose the four angels which are bound in the great river Euphrates. And the four angels were loosed, which were prepared for an hour, and a day, and a month, and a year, for to slay the third part of men.

What was the nature of the messengers’ armies?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending
Author’s Paraphrase
Revelation 9:16–19 I was given the number of their army: 200 million. The troops on their horses in my vision had fiery breastplates of red, blue, and yellow. The horses’ heads were like lions, breathing fire and smoke and burning sulfur from their mouths, which killed a third of the people. Besides their mouths, the horses had power to harm the people with their tails, which had heads like snakes.
King James
Revelation 9:16–19 And the number of the army of the horsemen were two hundred thousand thousand: and I heard the number of them. And thus I saw the horses in the vision, and them that sat on them, having breastplates of fire, and of jacinth, and brimstone: and the heads of the horses were as the heads of lions; and out of their mouths issued fire and smoke and brimstone. By these three was the third part of men killed, by the fire, and by the smoke, and by the brimstone, which issued out of their mouths. For their power is in their mouth, and in their tails: for their tails were like unto serpents, and had heads, and with them they do hurt.

Why wouldn’t people repent and turn to God?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending
Author’s Paraphrase
Revelation 9:20–21 Those who were not killed refused to change their ways. They continued to worship demons and idols of wood, stone, brass, silver, and gold, which cannot walk, see, or hear. They would not repent from their self-serving pleasures in prostitution, stealing, murder, and sorcery.
King James
Revelation 9:20–21 And the rest of the men which were not killed by these plagues yet repented not of the works of their hands, that they should not worship devils, and idols of gold, and silver, and brass, and stone, and of wood: which neither can see, nor hear, nor walk: Neither repented they of their murders, nor of their sorceries, nor of their fornication, nor of their thefts.