MP3: The Mighty Angels of Revelation 10
Hosts: Nathan Jones & Vic Batista
A Pause for Hope
Vic Batista: In our study of God’s mighty angels in the book Revelation we are now up to chapter 10. This chapter begs the question, “Why is this mighty angel of Revelation 10 so different than the others we’ve encountered so far?”
Nathan, in a previous segment you scared me half to death because you left off with the Sixth Trumpet Judgment of Revelation 9.
Nathan Jones: In Revelation 9, with the blowing of the Fifth Trumpet Judgment, demonic locusts are released from the Bottomless Pit. These demons are so terrible that God has had them locked up until this judgment. God is going to release these demons and they are going to sting people like a scorpion for five months. Those stung will wish they had died, but they cannot die, for God will not allow their death.
In the same chapter, we read about the Sixth Trumpet Judgment where four fire-breathing, lion-like dragons lead an army of 200 million horsemen. They kill a third of the remaining people living during that time period known as the Tribulation.
So, yes, these are possibly two of the most horrific judgments released from God’s arsenal. They scare a lot of people today from reading on into Revelation. But, just think, the people living during that time are going to be the ones truly terrified! Because of all that fear, Jesus gives the reader hope with Revelation 10.
Vic Batista: Back to the demonic locusts of the Fifth Trumpet Judgment, we see that their primary goal is to sting unbelievers, those people who have rejected God. Even under God’s wrath there is hope for the Tribulation Saint, because those people since they have a relationship with Christ are not going to be condemned again as the righteous with the wicked. God is always righteous!
Nathan Jones: Exactly! That same grace came earlier to the Church before the Tribulation commenced, for Jesus promised in 1 Thessalonians 4 and other verses to Rapture the Church out of this world before His wrath was let loose. There will be many people who will be left behind after the Rapture who will then finally give their life to Jesus Christ, coming from every tongue, tribe and nation. They will become saved after the Rapture, but because they missed their chance at the Rapture, they will have to endure living through the Tribulation.
We know from Jesus’ teachings that the one-world leader of the Tribulation — the Antichrist — will kill many of the Tribulation Saints, making many martyrs. But, there will also be many believers who will survive and live on into the Millennial Kingdom. They are the ones who will repopulate the earth.
Human history is a winnowing process where God is culling out the evil of the world and leaving the good. Sure, it’s a terribly painful process, but it is a process that needs to be done in order to restore mankind to a right relationship with God for the Eternal State.
Vic Batista: Proof there’s good news in the book of Revelation! It’s not all about bad news.Vic Batista: Proof there's good news in the book of #Revelation! Click To Tweet
The Mighty Angel with the Little Book
Vic Batista: There seems to be a pause in the narrative when we get to Revelation 10. Suddenly, another incredible angel appears on the scene, but this angel seems to be quite different from the other angels. Good prophecy teachers differ on the identity of this angel. Reading verses 1-4:
“I [the Apostle John] saw still another mighty angel coming down from heaven, clothed with a cloud. And a rainbow was on his head, his face was like the sun, and his feet like pillars of fire. He had a little book open in his hand. And he set his right foot on the sea and his left foot on the land, and cried with a loud voice, as when a lion roars. When he cried out, seven thunders uttered their voices. Now when the seven thunders uttered their voices, I was about to write; but I heard a voice from heaven saying to me, ‘Seal up the things which the seven thunders uttered, and do not write them.'”
Nathan Jones: Yes, this angel is quite different from what we have read so far about the other mighty angels of Revelation. There are 72 references to angels in the book of Revelation according to the New King James Version. Of those 72, now we come to this angel, and he is vastly different than all the other angels.
As we’ve been saying throughout this study, angels are not all guys with blonde curly hair and wings. They come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. Some look like animals, some giant, and some are acts of nature. But, this angel is described very differently than all the other angels we’ve met so far.
Vic Batista: We need to recognize here that this angel could actually be not merely an angel, but Jesus Christ Himself. Calvary Chapel’s founder, Chuck Smith, definitely believed this was the case and wrote so in many of his books and commentaries. Why do you think other Bible prophecy experts disagree and categorize this angel in the same category as the others from Revelation?
Nathan Jones: For starters, the Revelation 10:1 reference calls him an angel. And, we saw Jesus at the beginning of Revelation portrayed as a suffering lamb, and John recognized it to be Jesus Christ. Jesus was given the title deed to the earth, and He broke each of the seven seals so that judgment comes upon the earth.
Now in Revelation 10, I too believe we are seeing Jesus portrayed here, though totally different than earlier in the book. John calls Him a strong angel, or a mighty angel. But, an angel? Jesus isn’t an angel. And, it’s true, He’s not. Jesus is God in the flesh. He is part of the Trinity.
Remember though how Jesus is portrayed in the Old Testament. Jesus was called the Angel of the Lord. That was the title of His pre-incarnate self. So, here in Revelation 10, Jesus is portrayed as a mighty angel, but it doesn’t mean that He is an angel, per say, as a created being. Rather, the title is likely a term of endearment and portrays Christ’s role in part as the messenger for the Father. Jesus is God incarnate, and the Son is giving us the Father’s message as His intercessor.
We can know that this mighty angel is Jesus Christ Himself, because look at how He is described. The text says He is clothed with the clouds, He has a rainbow upon His head, His face shines like the sun, and His feet glow like pillars of fire. All we have to do is go back to Revelation 1 and read the same description of Jesus Christ. Jesus in the first chapter is described the same way.
So, here midway through Revelation we are seeing Jesus Christ show up again in the story. And, thank goodness He is showing up, because like we’ve been reading, these awful judgments are causing the reader to lose hope that mankind will survive! So, Jesus steps back into the story and gives John a flash-forward to the end of the Tribulation in order to give the reader hope.
Vic Batista: I love that the Bible so often gives hope to the reader. That’s why it is very important for Christians to take some time and read through the whole book of Revelation. After all, this is the only book in the Bible that offers people a blessing, right?
Nathan Jones: Yes, Revelation 1:3 does indeed offer a blessing to those who read it: “Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written in it; for the time is near.” I think that blessing is extremely important to our Christian faith.
In the twentieth segment of our series “The Mighty Angels of Revelation,” we’ll continue to explore the Mighty Angel of Revelation 10 and see what’s in his little book.