“The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him (John), to shew unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass; and he sent and signified it by his angel unto his servant John: Who bare record (wrote) of the word of Jesus Christ, and of ALL THINGS HE SAW (capitals mine).“
John, the author of the Book of Revelation, was instructed by the angel sent by Jesus Christ Himself to visit John and show him the “…things which must shortly come to pass.” John was about to be shown all the things which must come to pass before Jesus Returns and sets up His earthly 1,000 year earthly Kingdom. So much of what we know about the Last Days comes directly from John’s Book of Revelation. This includes the coming Church Age with a strong rebuke to many of the seven churches for what they have done in their history; the Rapture; the rise of the anti-christ and false prophet; the various global plagues and punishments; the two prophets and 144,000 Jewish evangelicals; the Mark of the Beast; a 200 million man army from the east; Armageddon; and, so much more, many of which are revealed for the very first and only time in God’s Holy Word, the Bible. This was so important John was told directly “Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophesy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand.” – Revelation 1:3. Over the course of the vision John was given, he was shown so much. But more than that, he very specifically was told to write down everything he saw. God wants us to know what is coming! Ultimately what he saw and wrote about became the Book of Revelation which is considered approximately 95% prophetic.
I John, who also am your brother, and companion in tribulation, and in the kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was in the isle that is called Patmos, for the word of God, and for the testimony of Jesus Christ. I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day (sabbath), and heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet, Saying, I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last: and, WHAT THOU SEEST, WRITE IN A BOOK (the Book of Revelation – capitals mine), and send it unto the seven (Christian) churches which are in Asia; unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira, and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea.”
When John was imprisoned by the Romans on the isle of Patmos (off the coast of Greece) in approximately 95 AD, he was the only disciple still alive at the time and obviously, since the book was written approximately 60 years after Jesus’s death and Resurrection and 25 years after the destruction of the Holy Jewish Temple in Jerusalem, John was old. He had witnessed so many of the things Jesus had told him about while He was still alive but now he was being shown what will happen on the earth in the Last Days.
What I find so fascinating is Daniel in the Old Testament also had a similar vision and was also told to write down what he saw! Many people have noticed the many similarities between the Book of Daniel and the Book of Revelation regarding end time events. And they should because Daniel and John, almost 700 years apart, were both given visions of what was coming in the Last Days AND TOLD TO WRITE DOWN WHAT THEY SAW!
“And I heard, but I understood not: Then said I, O my Lord, what shall be the end of these things? And he said, Go thy way Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end. Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried; but the wicked shall do wickedly: and none of the wicked shall understand; but the wise shall understand.”
Daniel wrote down exactly what he saw and was told but he didn’t understand what it meant so he asked God directly “What shall be the end of these things?” Basically, God said to Daniel was “Don’t worry about it. What you wrote won’t be understood until the Last Days because I have sealed it (made the words unknowable) until the time is relevant to those people living in the future Last Days.” So, Daniel was told to write down what he saw but was then told what he wrote down would not be understood until those people living in the Last Days would understand them because it was now being seen and understandable. On the other hand, John was told to write down what he saw but then to give it to the seven churches he earlier had founded in Asia Minor which also represented the coming Church Age. In other words, he was told to write down what he saw and then to give it to his seven churches at that time. What changed in those 700 years between Daniel and John? If you said the birth and death of Jesus Christ, you nailed it! Once Jesus came down from Heaven as a man, lived a sinless life and died for our sins then the rest of what had been written by Daniel could be fulfilled and understood.
But, then something very mysterious happened!
“And I saw another mighty angel come down from heaven, clothed with a cloud: and a rainbow was upon his head, and his face was as it were the sun, and his feet as pillars of fire: And he had in his hand a little book open: and he set his right foot upon the sea, and his left foot on the earth, And cried with a loud voice, as when a lion roareth: and when he had cried, seven thunders uttered their voices. And when the seven thunders had uttered their voices, I WAS ABOUT TO WRITE (capitals mine): and I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, SEAL UP THOSE THINGS WHICH THE SEVEN THUNDERS UTTERED, AND WRITE THEM NOT (capitals mine).”
John heard seven voices from the “…seven thunders” and he was about to write down what he heard but was then told by a voice directly from Heaven to NOT write them down. Wait a minute! In the Scripture above (Revelation 1:9-11) John was told to write what he saw in a book. Now he is being told to not write what he heard “…the seven thunders uttered” and to seal them up! In the Book of Daniel he was told by God He sealed up what Daniel had seen and written until the time came when it was to be pertinent and relevant to those living in the Last Days. Then what Daniel wrote would be understood. Here John is told to seal up what he heard and told to not even write it down. Also, the term “little book” is only used in Revelation 10 and is used 4 times always referring to the Scripture above where the angel has it in his hand.
According to Strong’s Accordance of the Bible, the word “thunders” is only used a combined total of seven times (God’s number of completeness?) in the Old and New Testament. It is always used with another word like “hail”, “rain” or “lightning” except the one time when it refers to the “seven thunders” uttered as voices in the Book of Revelation. Again, I don’t know what they mean but it is very interesting John heard them and was going to write them down but was told to NOT write them down. This is not an issue of sealing them up to be opened later. This is saying what was said was not for unbelievers OR Believers to hear in His Prophetic Word!
It definitely appears the mighty angel is not Jesus. Nowhere else in the Bible does Jesus appear as an angel so this apparently is a mighty angel like Michael or Gabriel. More importantly, if you read the chapters before and after chapter 10, it appears these “seven thunders” will occur at the midpoint of the Tribulation and at the beginning of the Great Tribulation, the final 3 1/2 years before Jesus Returns at Armageddon.
“But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the prophets.”
Honestly, I don’t know what the seven thunders represent. We do know they will occur in the middle of the Tribulation, at a time when the Wrath of God is being unleashed on the unbelievers of the earth. We can only know with certainty what Daniel and John were told to write down based upon what they saw, but not what they heard. However, based on their timing, my assumption is the seven thunders will not be good! But, you know what is good? What is good is what Jesus told all of us to do and that is to “…therefore comfort one another with these words.” His Words are great and true! Maybe we haven’t been told to write down what we have seen or heard but we have been told to definitely tell others of God’s Promise of Salvation for all of us. If we believe Jesus is the Son of God and that He was born and died for our sins, and if we repent of those sins, we will be saved!
Please pass this on to your friends and family as we anxiously await His soon Return! May God Bless you!