This is Part 4 of 6 parts answering a friend’s question regarding the Rapture and end times. Parts 5-6 will be posted on succeeding days.
The stage is now set for the second echelon of judgments – the trumpet judgments. These will be highly destructive to the world and the inhabitants who remain alive.
The first trumpet judgment brought hail, fire and blood which destroyed one third of the vegetation, “The first angel sounded: And hail and fire followed, mingled with blood, and they were thrown to the earth. And a third of the trees were burned up, and all green grass was burned up.” (Rev. 8:7 NKJ) What would it look like to have one third of the trees and vegetation burned? Where would birds roost, cows and animals eat grass or how would recycled carbon dioxide turn to oxygen?
The second trumpet describes a massive volcano that blasts a huge portion of a mountain into the sea that produces and the resultant tsunami and destruction to the sea creatures, “8 Then the second angel sounded: And something like a great mountain burning with fire was thrown into the sea, and a third of the sea became blood. 9 And a third of the living creatures in the sea died, and a third of the ships were destroyed. (Rev. 8:8-9 NKJ)
The third trumpet depicts a comet like astral feature that turns water to bitterness. That water became a poison that will kill millions of people who drank from the rivers and springs that were affected,
10 Then the third angel sounded: And a great star fell from heaven, burning like a torch, and it fell on a third of the rivers and on the springs of water. 11 The name of the star is Wormwood. A third of the waters became wormwood, and many men died from the water, because it was made bitter. (Rev. 8:10-11 NKJ)
The fourth trumpet strikes one third of the sun and stars for increased darkness like living near one of the poles during its winter, “Then the fourth angel sounded: And a third of the sun was struck, a third of the moon, and a third of the stars, so that a third of them were darkened. A third of the day did not shine, and likewise the night.” (Rev. 8:12 NKJ)
At this point the intensity of the judgments increases (how can they increase?).
The fifth trumpet portrays an angelic being who is given the key to the bottomless pit and from that pit arises smoke of a great furnace of destroying locusts. The locusts will not eat the grass, but will sting men who will call out for their own death,
Then the fifth angel sounded: And I saw a star fallen from heaven to the earth. To him was given the key to the bottomless pit. 2 And he opened the bottomless pit, and smoke arose out of the pit like the smoke of a great furnace. So the sun and the air were darkened because of the smoke of the pit. 3 Then out of the smoke locusts came upon the earth. And to them was given power, as the scorpions of the earth have power. 4 They were commanded not to harm the grass of the earth, or any green thing, or any tree, but only those men who do not have the seal of God on their foreheads. (Rev. 9:1-4 NKJ)
The sixth angel sounded his trumpet and a 200 million man army will be sent to kill and destroy. Various interpretations have been made, but they all point to the one third of mankind, who will die from this destructive trumpet,
Then the sixth angel sounded: And I heard a voice from the four horns of the golden altar which is before God, 14 saying to the sixth angel who had the trumpet, “Release the four angels who are bound at the great river Euphrates.” 15 So the four angels, who had been prepared for the hour and day and month and year, were released to kill a third of mankind. 16 Now the number of the army of the horsemen was two hundred million; I heard the number of them. (Rev. 9:13-16 NKJ)
China reportedly has this kind of army already, so they may be involved during the Tribulation wreaking destruction. As you read through Revelation 9:17 through Revelation 11:14, tremendous trouble will cause great destruction on mankind.
Finally, the seventh angel will sound his trumpet and this will initiate the seven bowl judgments. This transition will continue months of distress and hardship,
Then the seventh angel sounded: And there were loud voices in heaven, saying, “The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever!” (Rev. 11:15 NKJ)
Then I saw another sign in heaven, great and marvelous: seven angels having the seven last plagues, for in them the wrath of God is complete. (Rev. 15:1 NKJ)
Then I heard a loud voice from the temple saying to the seven angels, “Go and pour out the bowls of the wrath of God on the earth.” (Rev 16:1 NKJ)
The seven bowl judgments are the Great Tribulation of Revelation 16.