Monday, March 25, 2013

Revelation, Chapters 7 & 8: Nightmare at 20 000 feet

When I was about 5, I snuck into the room while my parents were watching The Twilight Zone: The Movie, probably exactly when this clip was playing. It took me years to get over it.

Chapter 7

John now sees the four angels standing at the four corners of the earth, holding on to the wind, keeping it off the earth. A fifth angel starts rising in the east and tells the other four that he's just going to quickly mark god's 144 000 best christians(12 000 from each Israelite tribe) so they're safe from harm, and then they can start destroying everything.

Then John notices that a large crowd has gathered around the Jesus lamb, all dressed in white and carrying palm fronds. The angels give up on world destruction and also come over to worship the lamb. One of the elders is getting a bit senile and asks John who the people in white are, but then he remembers they're martyrs and they've washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb (v. 14). Now they live in heaven, safe from famine, thirst and skin cancer. 

Chapter 8

The Jesus lamb opens the seventh seal and for half an hour, there is blessed silence. But then someone gives the seven angels trumpets. An eighth angel flies up to the altar carrying a censer full of incense and starts praying for the saints. Then he fills the censer with fire from the altar and throws it down to earth, which causes people to start shrieking again, as well as a thunderstorm and an earthquake. 

By now, the trumpeter angels have finished warming up. The first one blows his horn and a mix of hail, fire and blood falls to earth, burning a third of the trees and all of the grass. The second angel toots his own horn and a burning mountain falls into the sea, turning a third of it into blood, killing a third of the sea life and sinking a third of the ships. The third angel's trumpet causes a star to fall out of the sky and destroy a third of the rivers and fountains. This particular star is called Wormwood and it also poisons the water. The fourth angel's trumpeting is so bad it kills a third of the sun, moon and stars and kills a third of the day. The action is cut off by yet another angel flying through the air crying out woe to the people, because we haven't heard the other 3 trumpets yet.

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