The sixth angel gets his turn to blow his trumpet in today’s reading. This angel had the duty of releasing four other angels, fallen angels, who had been constrained from doing evil by God. Until now. The appointed time had come, and they were allowed to strike dead 1/3 of the earth’s population. These evil ones called upon an army of 200 million to help them. Such a number in John’s day would have been unheard of, but in our world today, an army of this size could be gathered.
Again, it is good for us to remember that the imagery we read here in Revelation is not real. It’s in John’s vision. Prophetic or not, God’s message is not meant to inflict vengeance but bring to repentance. Don’t worry about the symbols but on what they represent. God’s judgment will come in some form, at some appointed time. Will you be ready? Will you have turned to God? The words of Scripture are meant to give us a wake up call so that we are standing ready and helping others to do the same.
You might ask, “What trials has God allowed in my life to bring me back to him?” As we can see, God does allow these terrors to happen. If we recall what happened to Job, it was not God who brought the destruction. God only allowed it. We can think of our trials as learning experiences, as God’s disciplinary actions to help us grow and realize our dependence on him for deliverance. All good parents discipline their children to teach them right from wrong. Our heavenly Father is no different.
We can see from these terrors and judgments that God sets limits. He could have killed everyone who was “of the world” but he chose to limit it to 1/3 this time. Another judgment had killed off another portion. But there were plenty remaining who had a chance to repent. We hear here they did not. We also see the grace of God at work here. It is His grace which allows repentance. Think about that for a moment.
We are seeing through these visions what would happen if God allowed evil to have control of us. Death. Suffering. Thankfully, God is controlling the evil. Isn’t he? For those left behind, they still have time to make the right choice and trust in God. What if time runs out for them? When will time run out?
The timeline for God’s coming judgment is not for us to know. The message we should hear loud and clear is “Repent and follow me.” Before it’s too late! Who do you know who needs to hear this message? Share this devotional blog with them.
Let’s pray. Lord, forgive me when I let fear creep in and cripple my thoughts and actions. Help me stand strong against the evil one who works so hard to infiltrate my thoughts, dreams, and desires. May I help others who also struggle with this. Thank you for the gifts you have given me that allow your message to be heard. Walk before me and guide my steps, fill my mouth with the words to say. I trust you with my life. In Jesus’ name. Amen.