Anchor Secrets Unsealed School of Theology: Revelations Seven Seals

The First Seal

Three Angels Broadcasting Network

Program transcript



Series Code: ARSS

Program Code: ARSS190009S

00:16 Well, good morning everyone.
00:18 Welcome to Anchor.
00:21 This is day number three.
00:23 We're on a roll here. This is half way today.
00:27 Because we have 24 presentations and today we will do 4 more,
00:32 which will give us 12 and we'll be half way.
00:36 Today we are going to study some introductory matters,
00:39 and then we're going to go to study the first seal.
00:43 So I'm hoping that in this session we will be able to
00:46 do the introductory matters and also the first seal.
00:49 But if we are not able to finish the first seal,
00:51 we'll do it the second session.
00:53 But we want to begin with prayer, as we always do.
00:56 So let's bow our heads reverently for prayer.
00:59 Father in heaven, we thank You for the privilege
01:02 of beginning this new day.
01:04 Thank You, Lord, for Your many blessings.
01:06 Thank You because You give us life this day.
01:09 Thank You for Your Word.
01:11 We ask that Your Holy Spirit will be present
01:13 to give us understanding into the depths of this wonderful
01:17 book, the book of Revelation.
01:19 We place ourselves in Your hands,
01:22 pleading for Your presence.
01:23 And we thank You for being with us,
01:25 because we ask it in Jesus name, amen.
01:30 Okay, we're going to page 111, skipping a few things here
01:34 that we've basically covered before.
01:38 But I want to deal with the subtitle,
01:41 Ellen White and the Seven Seals, on page 111 of your syllabus.
01:47 And I want to remind those who are watching the live stream
01:51 and watching on our SumTV channels that you can
01:57 also get a syllabus from us after the class ends.
02:02 Or you can access it online and you can download it if you wish,
02:07 but it will be available after the class is over.
02:11 So anyway, if you want a hard copy, you can contact us
02:15 and get information about how you can get a hard copy
02:18 like the one that all the students have here.
02:21 So let's go to the section, Ellen White and the Seven Seals.
02:26 And I'm going to go through this carefully because it
02:28 deals with some very important matters.
02:31 At first sight, Ellen White has little to say about the
02:37 first four seals and the seventh seal.
02:41 In fact, as far as I know, she never quotes Revelation 8:1,
02:45 which is the seventh seal.
02:47 However, don't be fooled.
02:50 Though she does not have much to say in terms of quantity,
02:54 she does have several qualitative statements
02:58 that help us know when the seals are fulfilled
03:02 in the course of history.
03:05 Ellen White also has some significant statements
03:08 besides a statement on the first seal, the second seal,
03:13 and the third seal, at least hints,
03:16 she has several statements on the fifth seal
03:21 and she has many, many statements on the sixth seal.
03:26 So it's very important for us to realize that Ellen White
03:30 does have quite a bit to say about the seals,
03:32 even though many times she doesn't quote the verses,
03:35 she is dealing with the events that fulfill the seals.
03:40 Now let's go to the bottom of the page.
03:43 In, Desire of Ages, pages 833-835,
03:46 which is the last chapter of, Desire of Ages,
03:49 Ellen White explains the introductory
03:52 vision to the seals.
03:53 That's Revelation 4 and 5.
03:55 We dedicated a significant amount of time to study
03:59 the introductory vision.
04:00 In other words, Jesus ascending to heaven
04:02 and being installed as the High Priest and sitting on the throne
04:05 as the King of the kingdom of grace.
04:08 And then this applies to Christ's inauguration as
04:11 High Priest upon His ascension.
04:15 This means that the introductory vision gives us
04:19 the crucial historical starting point for the seals.
04:23 Are you with me or not?
04:25 So this gives us the beginning point.
04:27 The last chapter of, Desire of Ages,
04:30 is Ellen White's commentary on the introductory vision
04:34 right before the first seal, which is the white horse.
04:38 Then in, The Great Controversy, page 641,
04:42 Ellen White places the seventh seal
04:45 in the context of the second coming.
04:48 Now she doesn't quote Revelation 8:1,
04:50 but we're going to go through a method where we can
04:53 determine where Ellen White is commenting on
04:57 Bible passages even though she doesn't particularly
05:00 mention the verses.
05:04 So we have the starting point which is the introductory vision
05:08 in the last chapter of, Desire of Ages.
05:10 And then you have the seventh seal
05:13 in, Great Controversy, page 641.
05:16 So where would you expect to find the fulfillment
05:18 of the other seals, seal number one through seal number six?
05:23 It must be between the last chapter of, Desire of Ages,
05:26 and, Great Controversy, page 641.
05:29 Are you with me or not?
05:31 As we shall see, several times Ellen White applies the
05:36 expression of the first seal, "conquering and to conquer,"
05:41 to the gospel conquest of the early church.
05:45 By the way, we're going to notice something
05:47 very interesting in a moment.
05:48 So the first seal would be the apostolic church
05:51 going out conquering and to conquer.
05:54 With regard to the second seal, Ellen White has a clear
05:58 statement on the meaning of the sword.
06:01 The second rider has a sword in his hand
06:04 that takes away peace from the earth.
06:06 Ellen White has a significant statement
06:08 on when that is fulfilled.
06:11 And then she applies it to the persecutions
06:14 that the early church, the persecutions that they suffered
06:17 at the hands of the Roman Empire.
06:20 Concerning the third seal, Ellen White has a clear statement
06:23 about the oil and the wine.
06:25 Because oil and wine are mentioned in the third seal.
06:29 Furthermore, we shall see in the course of our study
06:32 that Ellen White had several clear statements
06:34 about the fifth and sixth seals.
06:37 Later on in the book, Great Controversy, I might say.
06:40 Regarding the seventh seal, she does not quote
06:43 Revelation 8:1, but clearly alludes to it.
06:49 Now the next paragraph is extremely important.
06:52 The best commentary on the introductory vision to the seals
06:58 is the last chapter of, The Desire of Ages.
07:02 The title is, To My Father and Your Father.
07:05 Speaking to the disciples.
07:07 The first two chapters of the book, Acts of the Apostles,
07:10 explain the enthronement of Jesus in heaven
07:13 on the day of Pentecost.
07:15 So we have to link, Acts of the Apostles,
07:19 the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, that's when the seven
07:22 spirits are sent to the earth that we studied about.
07:26 And then Ellen White, in the book, The Great Controversy,
07:30 expounds upon the seven seals in their proper order,
07:34 culminating on page 641 with the seventh seal.
07:39 So the last chapter of, Desire of Ages, actually has the
07:42 introductory vision, Revelation 4 and 5.
07:46 The book, Acts of the Apostles, has the enthronement of Christ
07:50 when He arrives in heaven and the description of the first
07:53 seal, the conquest of the early church.
07:56 And then the book, Great Controversy,
07:58 has the comments on the second seal through the seventh seal,
08:04 culminating in, Great Controversy, page 641.
08:07 Are you with me or not?
08:09 So what is the best commentary on the seals?
08:11 If I ask you, what is the best commentary that has ever
08:13 been written on the seals?
08:17 The last chapter of, Desire of Ages,
08:20 the book, Acts of the Apostles,
08:22 and the book, Great Controversy.
08:24 And somebody asked yesterday about what would be a good
08:27 commentary on the book of Revelation.
08:29 Well, I gave you the non-inspired commentaries,
08:32 but the best commentary on Revelation
08:34 is the book, Great Controversy.
08:37 I don't know whether you've noticed, Ellen White
08:39 follows the exact order of the book of Revelation
08:43 from beginning to end.
08:45 She begins with the persecutions in the early centuries,
08:51 and then she moves on to speak about the papacy,
08:55 then she speaks about the Millerites, 1844.
08:58 Before that, she speaks about the French Revolution.
09:00 That's Revelation 11.
09:02 Then she speaks about the three angels' messages.
09:05 Then she deals with the final controversy.
09:07 Then she deals with the second coming.
09:09 Then she deals with what happens during the millennium.
09:12 And then the desolation of the earth.
09:14 And then what happens after the millennium.
09:16 She's following the exact order of the book of Revelation.
09:20 It's the best commentary on the book of Revelation,
09:23 is the book, Great Controversy.
09:26 But the problem is, Ellen White many times does not quote
09:31 the verses that she's commenting on.
09:35 We had an example of that in the introductory vision.
09:38 You know, you read Revelation 4 and 5,
09:40 it says there in the throne room are the 24 elders,
09:44 and the four living creatures that have four faces, and so on,
09:48 and you have the seven spirits,
09:50 and you have one sitting on the throne who is not identified,
09:53 and then you have a lamb as though it had been slain.
09:56 You have all of these symbols.
09:58 But Ellen White, in her explanation,
10:00 she says the Father is on the throne.
10:03 She's interpreting who the person is.
10:06 "The Father is on the throne."
10:07 She says there are cherubim and seraphim.
10:10 The four living creatures.
10:11 She doesn't say four living creatures.
10:13 She never quotes the verses.
10:14 Then she says there also are present the representatives
10:17 of the worlds that never sinned.
10:19 That would be the 24 elders.
10:22 And then in, Acts of the Apostles, she speaks about
10:25 the sending of the Holy Spirit to the earth on the
10:28 day of Pentecost.
10:30 But you would never know that she's commenting
10:32 on Revelation 4 by reading what she's written because
10:37 she doesn't quote Revelation 4.
10:40 However, there is a hint.
10:42 At the end of the chapter, the last chapter of, Desire of Ages,
10:50 she quotes Revelation 5:12-13.
10:57 So if she's commenting at the very end of the chapter
11:00 Revelation 5:12-13, where would you expect to find her
11:04 commentary on Revelation 4?
11:08 In the previous pages, right?
11:11 So we have to be good detectives.
11:14 We have to look for clues.
11:16 You know, not everything is there on the surface.
11:18 We have to think, we have to look at the structure.
11:21 What comes before, what comes after, what order things are in.
11:25 Let me give you one other example of how,
11:30 you know, we need to look and read Ellen White
11:34 when many times she doesn't quote verses specifically,
11:38 although she's commenting on what the verses are saying.
11:43 And this is not directly related to the seals,
11:46 but it's another illustration of how we need to read,
11:49 The Great Controversy.
11:50 Ellen White, in the chapter on, The Time of Trouble,
11:54 she comments on the 144,000.
11:58 And she comments on the first four plagues
12:03 of Revelation 16.
12:05 So in the chapter on, The Time of Trouble,
12:07 she comments on the first four plagues.
12:10 Very brief, less than one page,
12:12 she comments on the first four plagues.
12:15 But we don't find any verse where she comments on
12:18 the fifth plague.
12:20 Or the sixth plague.
12:22 The drying up of the Euphrates.
12:24 And so you say, "Well, Ellen White, you know, she had
12:27 something to say about the first four, but she had
12:29 nothing to say about plagues number 5 and 6.
12:34 She did, but she doesn't quote the verses.
12:38 Now let's notice this.
12:40 I know you don't have a copy of, The Great Controversy,
12:43 but I'm going to show you how important it is to just,
12:49 you know, try to read between the lines what verses
12:52 Ellen White is commenting on even though she does not
12:55 quote the verses specifically.
12:58 I'm going to the chapter, God's People Delivered.
13:01 It's the first page of, God's People Delivered.
13:05 It's, Great Controversy, page 635.
13:08 In the previous chapter she commented on the
13:11 the first four plagues.
13:13 You know.
13:14 And then after that she doesn't quote about
13:18 the fifth or sixth plagues.
13:19 But what is the fifth plague? It's the plague of darkness.
13:23 What is the sixth plague?
13:25 It's the drying up of the river Euphrates.
13:28 And the seventh plague is the voice in heaven
13:30 that causes the earthquake, lightning, thundering, so on.
13:34 So notice, Great Controversy, page 635.
13:39 I'm only going to read at the bottom of the page.
13:43 "With shouts of triumph, jeering, and imprecation,
13:47 throngs of evil men are about to rush upon their prey..."
13:53 What is it that rushes?
13:56 Water rushes.
14:00 What does the waters represent?
14:04 What do they represent?
14:05 Multitudes, nations, tongues, and peoples
14:08 that are inimical to the people of God.
14:10 So they're about to rush upon their prey,
14:13 "...when, lo, a dense blackness deeper than the darkness
14:17 of the night falls upon the earth."
14:20 Plague number 5, the darkness.
14:24 Doesn't quote the verse,
14:26 but she speaks of the darkness.
14:29 After she says that a deep darkness, "deeper than the
14:35 darkness of the night falls upon the earth.
14:37 Then a rainbow shining with the glory from the throne of God
14:40 spans the heavens and seems to encircle each praying company."
14:43 Now listen to this.
14:44 "The angry multitudes are suddenly arrested."
14:49 What happens with the rushing waters?
14:51 They're arrested.
14:53 What is that?
14:54 The drying up of the Euphrates.
14:57 Are you following me or not?
15:00 But she doesn't quote the verses.
15:01 So you say she doesn't have anything to say.
15:03 Yes she does.
15:05 So that's how we have to read, Great Controversy,
15:09 Acts of the Apostles.
15:10 We have to look where Ellen White is commenting
15:13 on Bible verses even though she doesn't quote them.
15:15 And then I want you to notice,
15:18 and this is where I got this clue,
15:20 "The multitudes are suddenly arrested.
15:22 Their mocking cries die away.
15:24 The objects of their murderous rage are forgotten.
15:27 With fearful foreboding they gaze upon the symbol of
15:31 God's covenant and long to be shielded
15:34 from its overpowering brightness."
15:36 And then here's the clue that I saw that helped me understand
15:41 that the arresting of the multitudes is the drying up
15:45 of the waters and the darkness deeper than the darkness of
15:48 midnight is the fifth plague.
15:51 At the end of page 636 Ellen White quotes the seventh plague.
16:02 Let me just read that.
16:05 "The streams cease to flow.
16:07 Dark heavy clouds come up and clash against each other.
16:10 In the midst of the angry heavens is one clear
16:12 space of indescribable glory, whence comes the voice of God
16:17 like the sound of many waters, saying, 'It is done.'
16:20 Revelation 16:17."
16:22 The seventh plague.
16:24 And then she says, "That voice shakes
16:28 the heavens and the earth.
16:30 There is a mighty earthquake 'such as was not since
16:35 men were upon the earth,
16:37 so mighty an earthquake and so great.'"
16:40 Verses 17 and 18 of the seventh plague.
16:45 And then she goes on a little bit further down
16:47 to speak about the hailstones and the weight of the hailstones
16:50 about the weight of a talent.
16:52 Verses 19 and 21.
16:53 So she's commenting on the seventh plague.
16:56 So where would you expect to find her commentary
16:58 on the fifth and sixth?
17:03 So in the chapter, The Time of Trouble,
17:05 she's commenting on the first four plagues.
17:09 Then the darkness deeper than the darkness of the night.
17:12 Doesn't quote the verses.
17:14 Then the multitudes that want to rush upon
17:17 God's people are arrested.
17:18 That's the drying up of the Euphrates.
17:20 And then she quotes the verses having to do with
17:22 the seventh plague.
17:25 Are you following the method?
17:27 But for this, you know, we have to dedicate time
17:31 and we have to, you know, look at the sequence of things.
17:36 Not only just look at what we're reading at any given moment.
17:40 We need to look at what comes before, what comes after
17:43 the specific context in which passages
17:46 or verses are found.
17:49 Now with that in mind, let's go to page 121.
17:55 And we're going to notice here a summary of the introductory
18:01 vision and the seven seals.
18:03 A summary of the introductory vision and of the seven seals.
18:10 Now the first paragraph, we don't have time to do this,
18:12 but there's a striking parallel between Matthew 24
18:15 and the seven seals.
18:17 You'll find many, many parallels.
18:18 The sequence is basically the same sequence as the seals.
18:24 The seals are parallel in many ways to Matthew 24.
18:28 This indicates that the seals describe, in symbolic language,
18:32 events that occur during the Christian era because the events
18:36 in Matthew 24 are in chronological order.
18:40 We don't have time to get into that, but I did a series
18:43 on Matthew 24.
18:44 It's the most popular series that Secrets Unsealed has.
18:48 And it was 14 presentations studying the whole of Matthew 24
18:54 as well as the parallel passages in Mark 13 and Luke 21.
18:58 You can, you know, you can download that for free
19:01 or you can get a hard copy here if you wish.
19:04 But we don't have time to do the Matthew 24
19:06 parallel with the seals as well.
19:08 We just don't have enough sessions.
19:11 The seven churches, the next paragraph,
19:13 the seven churches are a description of the internal
19:15 condition of the church from apostolic times
19:18 until the second coming.
19:20 Even though the seals cover the same historical period
19:24 as the churches, the emphasis is different.
19:28 In other words, the time period is the same, but the
19:30 emphasis is different between the churches and the seals.
19:34 While in the churches the emphasis falls upon the internal
19:38 condition of the church in different periods of history,
19:42 the seals describe the external forces that affect the church
19:46 during the same periods.
19:49 Now let's look at the chronological flow
19:52 then of the seals.
19:54 And let me just ask you this question.
19:56 This is the quiz question for today.
20:00 How many times in, Great Controversy, does Ellen White
20:03 mention the barbarian invasions?
20:11 This much.
20:15 So why do we have four trumpets for the barbarian invasions
20:20 if they are so significant?
20:22 You know, we're going to study the trumpets next year,
20:25 Lord willing.
20:27 If we're still here, if the time of trouble hasn't come.
20:30 And things are moving very fast.
20:32 But, you know, Ellen White does not see any significance
20:38 to Islam in the end time.
20:41 She has the one comment on 1840.
20:43 Yes, in, Great Controversy.
20:45 But that's practically the lone statement that Ellen White has
20:49 on the Muslims.
20:52 Interesting.
20:53 You know, they called it the Turk back then.
20:57 So anyway, that's just a little side light.
21:01 Let's look at the sequence.
21:03 First, the Father sits alone on His throne in the
21:06 Holy Place of the heavenly throne room.
21:08 That's Revelation 4, right?
21:10 Yeah?
21:13 Then the cloud catches Jesus up to the
21:15 Father's throne in the Holy Place.
21:19 And you have Acts 1:9-11, Desire of Ages, pages 830-833,
21:23 Acts of the Apostles, pages 30-34.
21:26 Then the Father anoints the War Hero as Priest and King
21:31 in the Holy Place, and the outpouring of the Holy Spirit
21:35 on the day of Pentecost announces this
21:37 heavenly event on earth.
21:41 Correct?
21:43 The seven spirits are what?
21:45 They are there in chapter 4,
21:47 and in chapter 5 they are sent to the earth.
21:52 And then we have the seals,
21:54 the breaking of the seals after that.
21:59 The breaking of the seals, in other words, describe events
22:01 that transpire between the moment that Jesus began His work
22:05 in the Holy place and when finally He opens the scroll
22:09 to reveal who will inherit what Adam lost.
22:13 Does that make sense?
22:16 The seven seals are simply the span between the inauguration
22:21 and the consummation.
22:23 The events in between.
22:25 That's historicism.
22:29 If Adventists ever get rid of historicism,
22:31 we have no reason to exist.
22:34 Because our origins are based on a historicist understanding,
22:38 for example, of Revelation 10.
22:42 So if we discard the method, we discard the message.
22:46 Because the message is based on the method.
22:50 And there are many scholars these days that are questioning
22:52 the historicist method of interpreting prophecy.
22:55 Notable scholars.
22:57 It's dangerous ground to get rid of the method,
23:01 because if you have the wrong method,
23:04 you're going to reach the wrong conclusions.
23:07 Now the first seal...
23:09 This is just so you can get an overview
23:11 of what we're going to study.
23:12 The first seal describes the conquests
23:16 of the apostolic church.
23:18 And that's found in, Acts of the Apostles, pages 47-602.
23:24 The second seal, the red horse, is the description of the
23:29 persecutions against Christians by the Roman emperors,
23:33 the early Roman emperors of the Christian age.
23:38 By persecution Satan attempts to eradicate God's faithful people.
23:43 So Satan's first method, the red horse, red is symbolic of blood.
23:48 Satan tries to get rid of the church by persecution.
23:52 The third seal is a black horse.
23:55 Satan changes his strategy from persecution to infiltration.
24:01 His philosophy was this: if you cannot fight them, join them.
24:06 Christianity merges with paganism and the darkness
24:10 of apostasy enters the church during
24:12 the period of Constantine.
24:16 Great Controversy, pages 49-60.
24:19 See, Ellen White is following the order.
24:22 The fourth seal, the pale horse, it's the horse of death.
24:30 The famine of the third horse is going to lead to death
24:33 in the fourth horse.
24:35 The apostasy in the church intensifies
24:37 under the fourth horse and leads to the emergence of papal Rome
24:42 who persecutes and kills God's people for 1260 years.
24:47 In other words, there's lots of martyrs during that period.
24:51 So then we come to the fifth seal.
24:53 Are you seeing that there's a sequence here?
24:56 These are not just separate disconnected events.
24:59 The conquest of the early church leads Satan to say,
25:03 "I've got to get rid of this through persecution."
25:06 But when he persecutes the church, it grows all the more.
25:08 So he says, "I've got to change my method."
25:09 So you have the black horse.
25:11 He infiltrates the church with apostasy.
25:14 And then the papacy becomes a persecutor
25:16 and kills the martyrs.
25:18 So under the fifth seal, the martyrs are crying out
25:20 and saying, "Hey, we're on the right side
25:24 and the papacy is on the wrong side,
25:25 and we're being killed."
25:27 And they're crying out from under the altar.
25:28 Are you with me or not?
25:31 Those who pagan and papal Rome slew cry out for justice.
25:36 By the way, the judgment of Daniel 7,
25:40 the purpose of the judgement of Daniel 7 is to reverse
25:44 the unjust earthly judgments.
25:47 You know, there's this big debate about Daniel chapter 7.
25:50 We use it to speak about the investigative judgment
25:54 of all those who profess Jesus Christ.
25:58 But Desmond Ford who passed away recently
26:00 says the central theme of Daniel 7 is not upon
26:04 God's people, it's upon the punishment of the little horn.
26:09 But when you read the chapter carefully,
26:11 the little horn, it says in Daniel 7, prospered.
26:15 Things went well.
26:17 The saints were given into his hand for 1260 years;
26:20 times, times, and the dividing of time.
26:23 So in other words, the papacy prevailed and the saints lost.
26:30 Was that just?
26:32 No.
26:33 Earthly courts condemned God's people.
26:36 So what does God do in the investigative judgment?
26:40 What He does, He revokes the judgments of the earthly courts
26:45 and He rewards the saints of the Most High.
26:48 So the central theme is not the punishment
26:50 of the little horn for persecuting the saints,
26:53 it's vindicating the saints who were persecuted by the papacy.
26:57 And that's clear.
26:59 Because Jesus goes before the Father,
27:01 before the Ancient of Days, clearly it says in Daniel 7,
27:05 Jesus goes to receive the kingdom.
27:08 And then the kingdom is given to the saints of the Most High
27:12 and to Jesus.
27:13 So those who were persecuted and killed,
27:19 now the heavenly judgment reverses the judgments,
27:22 the unjust judgments on earth and rewards
27:26 the saints of the Most High.
27:28 So the central theme of Daniel 7 is not the punishment
27:31 of the little horn.
27:32 The central theme is the rewarding of God's people that
27:35 have been mistreated by the little horn.
27:38 Are you following me or not?
27:40 Now let's continue here then the fifth seal.
27:43 Those whom pagan and papal Rome slew cry out for Justice.
27:48 And I have in parentheses, the judgment in Daniel 7
27:51 reverses the sentences in the earthly tribunals.
27:55 In answer to their pleas, what does God do
27:57 when the martyrs under the altar are crying out?
28:00 What does God do?
28:02 He gives them a white robe.
28:05 Well, they're dead.
28:07 It means that they're saved, right?
28:09 Because they have the righteousness of Christ.
28:11 And what does He tell them?
28:13 He says, rest a little while
28:18 until the rest of the martyrs are killed.
28:22 And then he'll be rewarded with the rest of the martyrs.
28:25 Does this give us the idea that the same power that persecuted
28:28 in the past is going to persecute again in the future?
28:32 Hmm.
28:35 The sixth seal.
28:37 Signs in the sun, moon, and the stars, and a great earthquake.
28:42 The sixth seal has two parts, we're going to notice.
28:46 And the two parts are separated by a long period of time.
28:50 The first part of the sixth seal is Revelation 6:12-13.
28:55 And the significant thing is, you know, Ellen White,
28:57 this is so interesting, Ellen White quotes Revelation 6:12-13.
29:05 And then 200 pages later in, Great Controversy,
29:09 she quotes Revelation 6:14-17.
29:14 Why would she do that?
29:16 Because there's a time gap, there's all sorts of events
29:20 that transpire between the first part of the sixth seal
29:24 and the last part of the sixth seal.
29:26 The last part of the sixth seal is the second coming of Christ.
29:31 So let's go through this.
29:33 The fulfillment of the first part of the sixth seal,
29:35 Revelation 6:12-13, occurs between 1755 and 1833.
29:42 The second part of the sixth seal, Revelation 6:14-17,
29:46 will occur at the second coming.
29:49 And then in between that you have Revelation 7:1-8.
29:52 It describes the period between the first and the second
29:55 part of the sixth seal.
29:58 The sealing.
30:00 And then, of course, you have the seventh seal,
30:03 which is silence in heaven for about half an hour.
30:06 And I don't believe we apply the year/day principal there.
30:10 Because after the close of probation, the time periods
30:15 are to be understood literally.
30:17 And we'll come back to that later.
30:20 So under the seventh seal, there is a period of awful silence
30:23 during the second coming of Christ when the redeemed
30:27 cry out, "Who shall be able to stand?"
30:30 Ellen White says that when Jesus is coming,
30:33 He hasn't arrived at the earth yet, the saints cry out,
30:38 "Who shall be able to stand?"
30:41 That's the last part of the sixth seal, right?
30:44 And then Ellen White says that there's an awful period of
30:47 silence in heaven.
30:50 And then after the awful period of silence,
30:52 which is the seventh seal, a voice is heard saying,
30:56 "My grace is sufficient for you."
31:00 That is the seventh seal.
31:03 And we're going to study all of these things.
31:05 I just want you to get the overview now.
31:09 And finally, the last paragraph, when the seventh seal is
31:11 broken, God will take His people to heaven.
31:16 For how long?
31:17 For a thousand years.
31:20 They will be able to do what?
31:22 To examine the contents of the scroll.
31:26 What does the scroll contain?
31:28 We studied this. What does the scroll contain?
31:31 The whole history of the world,
31:33 and the decisions that each person made
31:35 within the history of the world
31:37 that determines their salvation or their perdition.
31:40 Remember the case of the religious leaders that said,
31:44 "Release unto us Barabbas."
31:46 Ellen White says that their act was written in the book.
31:49 Are they going to see that event and why they're lost? Yes.
31:53 So the book reveals why people are saved
31:55 and why people are lost.
31:57 Let me ask you, after the millennium, is there going to be
31:59 a great panoramic view where the wicked are going to see
32:02 why they were lost?
32:04 That's the final unfurling of the scroll.
32:08 It's after the millennium.
32:10 But God's people will examine the contents
32:11 during the millennium.
32:13 Are you with me or not?
32:15 After the millennium, God will open the scroll
32:18 and reveal its contents to the lost outside the Holy City,
32:22 and then God will create a new heavens and a new earth
32:28 where righteousness dwells.
32:31 So that basically is an overview of the seals.
32:34 Is that clear?
32:36 Sequence clear?
32:37 Okay, now we're going to study specifically the events
32:42 in more detail.
32:43 So let's go to page 139.
32:46 We've got about 25 minutes.
32:48 I don't know if we'll be able to finish the first seal,
32:50 but we'll give it a shot.
32:53 Revelation 6:1-2
32:58 That's page 139 in the syllabus.
33:01 "Now I saw when the Lamb opened one of the seals;
33:05 and I heard one of the four living creatures saying with
33:08 a voice like thunder, 'Come and see.'
33:11 And I looked, and behold, a white horse."
33:16 That's the reason why Steve Wohlberg called his ministry
33:20 White Horse Media.
33:22 I like that name.
33:24 Isn't that a nice name for a ministry?
33:27 So it says, "And I looked, and behold, a white horse.
33:31 He who sat on it had a bow;
33:34 and a crown was given to him,
33:37 and he went out conquering and to conquer."
33:42 Now there are several symbols in these verses.
33:45 First, there is a white horse.
33:48 Secondly, there is a rider on the white horse.
33:51 Third, the rider has a crown on his head.
33:55 Fourth, he has a bow in his hand.
33:59 If he's going to conquer, you know, the bow definitely is
34:03 an item of war of that time.
34:06 And with the crown and the bow, he goes out conquering
34:10 and to conquer.
34:13 So let's notice, first of all, what is meant by the
34:17 white horse and its rider.
34:18 How do we determine what is meant by the
34:20 white horse and the rider?
34:24 Does Revelation 6:1-2 explain what the horse and rider are?
34:30 No. So how can we ever decipher it?
34:34 We allow Scripture to interpret Scripture.
34:40 You say, why do we do that?
34:42 Let me ask you, who inspired Scripture?
34:45 The Holy Spirit.
34:47 Did the Holy Spirit put everything in Scripture
34:49 that we need to understand Scripture?
34:53 Or did He miss something where we can't explain something
34:57 because He forgot to put something in there that explains
34:59 what we're reading?
35:01 No.
35:02 The Holy Spirit placed in Scripture everything we need
35:06 to understand Scripture.
35:09 So when you find a symbol that is not explained,
35:11 you go to other places in the Bible that explains the symbol.
35:15 It's that simple. It's not rocket science.
35:18 And there are people in the Adventist church,
35:20 scholars today, that are questioning the principle
35:24 of sola scriptura, or the principle of
35:26 Scripture as its own interpreter.
35:28 They say, "Well, you know, you have to stay
35:31 within the passage itself.
35:32 You know, this is the proof text method."
35:36 So what they do is they speak negatively if this method
35:40 of allowing Scripture to interpret Scripture.
35:42 Because they say that's the proof, you find all these verses
35:45 as proof texts.
35:48 Well, maybe they are proof texts.
35:50 They prove that we're right, huh?
35:54 Now notice Zechariah 10:3-6.
35:57 Zechariah is a very prophetic book with lots of symbols.
36:01 It's one of the most difficult books to understand
36:03 in the whole Bible, Zechariah.
36:07 But you'll notice in Zechariah 10:3-6
36:11 that God's people, Judah, are compared to a conquering horse.
36:18 And I'm going to read the verses.
36:20 God is speaking.
36:41 So what does the horse represent in this passage?
36:45 Judah.
36:48 And who is riding the horse?
36:52 The Lord is riding the horse.
36:56 So once again it says, "...and will make them,"
37:00 that is Judah, "as His royal horse in the battle."
37:06 So is there going to be conquering and to conquer?
37:08 Absolutely.
37:17 Is there a bow in the first seal?
37:20 Yes.
37:28 "Ruler." Interesting.
37:30 Does the rider have a crown?
37:32 Yes.
37:38 Is this a conquering horse?
37:40 Oh yes it is.
37:50 Ah, who's riding the horse?
37:53 His people are the horse.
37:55 Let me ask you, does the horse guide the rider
37:58 or does the rider guide the horse?
38:01 Well, sometimes the horse does, if it's a rebellious horse.
38:05 But normally it would be the rider that guides the horse.
38:10 So notice, once again it says, "They shall fight because
38:12 the Lord is with them."
38:19 See, the horse represents God's people.
38:36 Now notice what Ellen White has to say where she explains
38:40 what the horse represents.
38:43 This is Review and Herald, July 10, 1900.
38:48 "God desired His people to go forth
38:53 conquering and to conquer."
38:56 So what does the horse represent?
38:59 His people.
39:01 In another statement, Prophets and Kings, page 725,
39:06 this is speaking about the final conquering,
39:09 when the loud cry is proclaimed.
39:12 "Clad in the armor of Christ's righteousness,
39:16 the church is to enter upon her final conflict.
39:20 Fair as the moon, clear as the sun,
39:25 and terrible as an army with banners,
39:28 she," that is the church, "is to go forth into
39:31 all the world..." Doing what?
39:34 "...conquering and to conquer."
39:37 So what does the white horse represent?
39:40 It represents the church.
39:42 Defeating the enemies of the church.
39:44 Conquering and to conquer.
39:47 Ellen White also described Jesus as the rider on the white horse.
39:52 It is the rider who guides the horse,
39:55 not the horse that guides the rider.
39:58 That is, the rider of the horse symbolizes Jesus
40:01 and the horse itself represents His people.
40:06 Notice volume 4 of the, Bible Commentary, page 1146.
40:10 "The issue of the battle does not rest upon
40:12 the strength of mortal man.
40:15 'The Lord shall go forth as a might man,
40:18 He shall stir up jealousy like a man of war.
40:22 He shall cry, yea, roar;
40:25 He shall prevail against His enemies.'
40:29 In the power of Him who rides forth conquering and to conquer,
40:35 weak finite man may gain the victory."
40:39 So who is the rider?
40:41 The rider is Jesus.
40:43 And who is the horse?
40:46 Ah, the horse is the church.
40:49 Colporteur Ministry, page 155.
40:52 "God's workers must gain a far deeper experience.
40:57 If they will surrender all to Him,
40:59 He will work mightily for them.
41:03 They will plant the standard of truth upon fortresses
41:06 till then held by Satan, and with shouts of victory
41:10 take possession of them.
41:12 They bear the scars of battle, but there comes to them
41:16 the comforting message that the Lord will..." What?
41:20 "...will lead them..." See, the horse.
41:22 "...will lead them on conquering and to conquer."
41:28 And then you have, Christian Service, page 166.
41:32 Christ identifies His interests with the interests
41:37 of His faithful people;
41:38 He suffers in the person of His saints.
41:41 And whoever touches His chosen ones, touches Him."
41:46 In other words, there's a close intimate relationship between
41:49 the rider and the horse.
41:51 You know, just not anybody can ride a horse.
41:54 There's a rapport between the horse and the rider.
41:59 Notice, In Heavenly Places, page 313.
42:02 "The world today is in a crying need of a revelation
42:07 of Christ Jesus..." How?
42:10 " the person of His saints.
42:14 God desires that His people shall stand before the world..."
42:18 What kind of what?
42:20 "...a holy people."
42:21 What color is the horse?
42:24 What does white represent?
42:26 We'll come back to this in a moment.
42:29 So once again, "God desires that His people shall stand
42:32 before the world a holy people.
42:34 Why?
42:35 Because there is a world to be saved by the light..."
42:39 By the way, light is white, right?
42:40 We studied that yesterday.
42:42 "...of the gospel truth; and as the message of truth
42:46 that is to call men out of darkness into God's marvelous
42:50 light is given by the church, the lives of its members,
42:55 sanctified by the Spirit of truth, are to bear witness
42:58 to the verity of the messages proclaimed."
43:01 So we've interpreted what the rider represents
43:05 and what the horse represents.
43:06 The horse represents the church, and the rider that guides
43:10 the horse is Jesus Christ going out conquering
43:15 and to conquer.
43:18 The bottom of page 141.
43:21 Scripture uses different symbols to illustrate
43:23 the intimate relationship between Jesus and His people.
43:27 Whoever touches His people touches whom?
43:31 Touches the Lord.
43:33 And you know, I have illustrations here.
43:37 Whoever touches the head touches what?
43:40 Touches the body, touches the head, right?
43:44 For example, when somebody pricks you with a needle,
43:47 does the head feel it?
43:49 Yeah, it's the head that feels it, by the way, folks.
43:52 You say, "Oh, my hand felt it."
43:54 Yeah, but it's being processed by the brain.
43:57 So whoever hurts the body of Christ hurts Christ.
44:02 Whoever messes with the shepherd,
44:06 or with the sheep, is messing with whom?
44:10 With the shepherd.
44:12 Whoever messes with the bride is messing with the husband.
44:20 And Jesus, as the sovereign Commander,
44:24 whoever messes with His armies is messing with the Commander.
44:30 Revelation 19 describes the time when the church militant
44:35 will become the church triumphant
44:38 when the spiritual victories of Christ through the church
44:41 during the Christian dispensation become the
44:44 literal victory of Jesus and His church at the second coming.
44:48 Because at the end of the book, we find the white horse again.
44:53 And the rider on the horse.
44:57 Revelation 19:11-12 describes that.
45:17 So at this point the church militant, the church that is
45:21 described in the first seal now is the church victorious.
45:26 Because Jesus is coming on a white horse
45:28 with the armies of heaven to deliver His people
45:31 from literal death at the hands of their enemies.
45:34 Now let's talk about the color white.
45:37 The horse is white.
45:40 Futurists and dispensationalists believe that the white horse
45:44 symbolizes a future antichrist
45:47 that will pass himself off as Christ.
45:52 They say, see, he's going to pass himself out as white,
45:55 but he's really the antichrist.
45:57 The problem with this is it doesn't fit
46:00 with the book of Revelation.
46:01 I have this quotation from George Eldon Ladd
46:04 who was a scholar, a very good scholar,
46:07 not an Adventist, but he wrote about the
46:09 color white in Revelation.
46:11 And I read, it's from a book that he wrote.
46:16 I didn't provide the reference here,
46:18 but I can get that for you.
46:20 "In the Revelation, white is always a symbol of Christ,
46:25 or of something associated with Christ,
46:28 or of spiritual victory."
46:30 Like the great multitude who are clothed in white robes.
46:34 "Thus the exalted Christ has white hair, white as wool;
46:40 the faithful will receive a white stone with a new name
46:43 written on it; they are to wear white garments;
46:47 the 24 elders are clad in white; the martyrs are given white
46:51 robes, as is the great numberless throng;
46:55 the Son of Man is seen on a white cloud;
46:57 He returns on a white horse accompanied by the
47:00 armies of heaven who are clad in white and ride white horses;
47:04 in the final judgment, God is seated on a great white throne."
47:08 So how can you say that the white horse of the first seal
47:12 represents the antichrist.
47:14 In Revelation, the color white is always identified
47:18 with Christ and with the followers of Christ.
47:21 Now why white?
47:23 Why is the horse white? The horse represents the church.
47:26 Why would the horse be white?
47:29 Because in Scripture, white represents what?
47:33 It represents purity.
47:35 And you have several verses here that we're not going to read.
47:40 Was the apostolic church a pure church
47:43 in doctrine and lifestyle?
47:46 We're going to read in a moment a quotation from Ellen White.
47:49 Yes, it was a pure church in doctrine and in lifestyle.
47:55 Now here comes another important point.
47:57 However, white is also the color of what?
48:01 It's the color of light.
48:03 And light symbolizes what?
48:06 The Word of God.
48:08 "Your Word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path."
48:15 And light is white.
48:18 So white would also represent the witness of the church
48:24 through the Word.
48:27 So white is also the color of light.
48:30 And light symbolizes the Word of God.
48:32 And you can look up the verses.
48:35 During the white horse period the church is pure,
48:39 and it is the what?
48:42 The light of the world.
48:45 Are you following the argument?
48:46 It's the light of the world.
48:49 In obedience to the rider's command,
48:51 the earliest church, that is the horse, witnessed where?
48:57 In Jerusalem, in Judea, in Samaria,
49:02 and unto the uttermost ends of the earth.
49:05 The church won victory after victory
49:09 and the gospel went to the entire Roman Empire
49:13 in a single generation.
49:16 Was the apostolic church a conquering church?
49:20 Was it a pure church?
49:22 It was certainly a pure church.
49:24 Did it shed light, which is the Word of God?
49:29 Absolutely.
49:31 Did it take away subjects from Satan's kingdoms?
49:34 By the thousands.
49:37 Now the white horse stands in contrast to the
49:39 black horse of darkness.
49:43 We're going to see that black and darkness
49:46 are used synonymously.
49:48 In other words, the black horse is the horse of darkness.
49:51 When darkness comes into the church.
49:54 When the church loses its purity of doctrine and lifestyle
49:57 it becomes what?
50:00 It becomes a black horse.
50:03 Now Ellen White describes the early church.
50:06 "The early Christians were indeed a peculiar people.
50:11 Their blameless deportment and unswerving faith
50:17 were a continued reproof that disturbed the sinner's peace."
50:22 So, do you have a fight going on here?
50:25 Oh, you have a real struggle.
50:29 Though few in numbers, without wealth, position,
50:35 or honorary titles, they were a terror to evildoers
50:40 wherever their character and doctrines were known."
50:46 So it wasn't only doctrines, it was their lifestyle.
50:50 "Therefore, they were hated by the wicked,
50:53 even as the ungodly Cain hated Abel.
50:56 For the same reason that Cain slew Abel
50:58 did those who sought to throw off the restraint
51:02 of the Holy Spirit put to death God's people.
51:06 It was for the same reason that the Jews rejected
51:09 and crucified the Savior; because the..." What?
51:13 "...the purity and holiness of His character..."
51:16 See, that's the color white.
51:17 "...because the purity and holiness of His character
51:20 was a constant rebuke to their selfishness and corruption.
51:26 From the days of Christ until now, His faithful disciples
51:29 have excited the hatred and opposition of those who
51:32 love and follow the ways of sin."
51:35 So do you see the number of times Ellen White
51:37 in this statement emphasizes the purity of the early church,
51:40 of their lifestyle, of their doctrine,
51:42 the fact that they witnessed?
51:44 See, this is all related to the symbols in the first horse.
51:49 Now what does the bow represent?
51:52 Well, in ancient times what weapons were used?
51:55 Well, they used the sword, but they also used what?
51:58 The bow.
52:00 2 Kings 13:17 shows us that the bow represents
52:07 God's deliverance in battle.
52:09 The bow and arrows.
52:11 In, Acts of the Apostles, page 45, you find the commentary
52:15 of Ellen White on the bow.
52:17 "The arguments of the apostles alone, though clear and
52:20 convincing, would not have removed the prejudice
52:23 that had withstood so much evidence.
52:26 However, the Holy Spirit sent the arguments home
52:30 to hearts with divine power.
52:33 The words of the apostles..."
52:36 And I have in brackets here, now that the seven spirits
52:40 had been sent into all the earth, the apostles shoot
52:43 the arrows, and the Spirit through the ministration
52:45 of the angels guides them to the heart.
52:48 "The words of the apostles were as..." What?
52:52 " arrows of the Almighty, convicting men
52:56 of their terrible guilt in rejecting and crucifying
52:59 the Lord of glory."
53:00 So the church is going out to conquer with the bow.
53:04 And what do the arrows represent?
53:07 They represent the Holy Spirit guiding the arrows to the heart
53:11 to bring about conversions.
53:14 Desire of Ages, page 104.
53:16 "God does not send messengers to flatter the sinner.
53:20 He delivers no message of peace to lull the unsanctified
53:24 into fatal security.
53:26 He lays heavy burdens upon the conscience of the wrongdoer
53:30 and pierces the soul with arrows of conviction."
53:36 Gospel Workers, pages 150-151.
53:39 "The words of Christ were as..." What?
53:42 " arrows..."
53:44 Did the apostles shoot arrows?
53:47 Oh yeah, they shot arrows. Symbolically.
53:51 And who directed the arrows to the heart?
53:54 Ah, the Holy Spirit.
53:55 The seven spirits that were sent to the earth.
53:58 "The words of Christ were as sharp arrows
54:00 which went to the mark and wounded
54:02 the hearts of His hearers.
54:03 Every time He addresses the people, whether His audience
54:05 was large or small, His words took saving effect
54:08 upon the soul of someone."
54:10 And then comes this beautiful statement.
54:11 Christ Object Lessons, page 158.
54:14 "The Pharisee felt no conviction of sin.
54:17 The Holy Spirit could not work with him.
54:19 His soul was encased in a self-righteous armor
54:22 which the arrows of God, barbed and true-aimed
54:27 by angel hands, failed to penetrate."
54:32 So are you catching the picture about what the
54:34 first seal is all about?
54:37 The church is going out conquering and to conquer.
54:39 Jesus is guiding the church.
54:41 You know, arrows are being shot. Souls are being converted.
54:48 So let's take a look at the crown.
54:50 Because the rider has a crown.
54:53 The word of crown here is stephanos.
54:56 With few exceptions, like we noticed yesterday,
54:58 the stephanos crown is the one that is given to a victor.
55:03 For example, it was given to victors in the Olympic games
55:07 in the times of the Roman Empire.
55:10 Revelation 2:10
55:13 We're going to read several verses now.
55:15 Probably some of them we'll have to read in the next session.
55:18 But we're going to see that the crown involves a struggle,
55:23 fighting, going out conquering and to conquer,
55:25 and getting a crown because victory is being gained.
55:30 Revelation 2:10, which we're going to take a look at later.
55:46 See, once again, faithfulness in the battle.
55:53 James 1:12
55:55 "Blessed is the man who endures temptations."
55:57 See, once again, there's the trial, the battle.
56:09 2 Timothy 4:7-8
56:11 Had the apostle Paul gained the victory?
56:14 Oh yeah.
56:15 He's about to be beheaded, and he says,
56:17 "I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race,
56:20 I have kept the faith.
56:22 Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness
56:26 which the Lord, the righteous Judge,
56:27 will give me on that Day; and not to me only,
56:31 but also to all who have loved His appearing."
56:35 And then you have this passage in 1 Corinthians 9:24-27
56:41 where the apostle Paul uses the example of the Olympic games.
57:24 So what does a crown represent?
57:27 It represents victory in battle.
57:30 It represents victory in trials.
57:34 Is that true of the apostolic church?
57:36 Did they gain victory after victory? Yes.
57:39 Now in our next class we're going to finish
57:42 our study of the first horse, and then we're going to
57:45 get into the second horse.
57:46 We're going to look at the phrase,
57:48 conquering and to conquer.
57:51 We've put all of the symbols together,
57:53 we have one thing that we still need to study.
57:55 What does it mean that the early church
57:57 went out conquering and to conquer?
58:00 That will be the study for our next lesson.


Revised 2022-02-14