What Happens Next? Revelation 8, The 7th Seal/4 Trumpet Blasts

When the Lamb opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour.

  • After the intermission of chapter 7, we return to the opening of the 7 seals mentioned back in chapter 5.
  • John’s report of the events continues from a heavenly perspective.
  • Chapter 8 is largely a display of God’s judgment on sin through a series of trumpet blasts.
  • “When the Lamb” – John reminds us briefly of what was stated in 5.6-10, that Christ is the only one worthy to open the seals.
  • “silence in heaven for about half an hour” – until now, John’s description of heavenly events largely revolves around continual worship of the godhead…”day and night they never stop, saying, ‘Holy, holy, holy, Lord God, the Almighty, who was , who is, and who is to come” (4.8). This is no doubt a signal that something big is about to happen.
  • The opening of the 7th seal is really the continuing of the unfolding of the judgment scroll of chapter 5. A telescoping of sorts.
  • “What he sees and hears better described as angels blowing trumpets rather than as reading the contents of a scroll. Another way to think about this is that the seven trumpet judgments (and seven bowl judgments of chapter 16) are what is written on the scroll. After the seventh seal is broken, the scroll unrolls to reveal its contents.” – Kendell H. Easley, Revelation, vol. 12, Holman New Testament Commentary (Nashville, TN: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1998), 142.

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