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The sixth seal

June 21, 2011 1 comment

Two commentaries on John’s description of the opening of the sixth seal in Revelation 6:12-17 are provided. In the table below the middle column contains my interpretation and the column on the right contains comments by Robert L. Thomas. [1]

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Mountains and islands were moved out of their places

June 20, 2011 Comments off

In the opening of the sixth seal, the great earthquake and the events following are taken to be literal by some, and non-literal by others. Some of those who support a figurative interpretation point out that inconsistencies and contradictions are introduced, if the events are literal. The mountains mentioned in Revelation 6:14 must remain, since in verses 15 and 16, men hide in the rocks and dens of the mountains.
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John N. Darby, William Kelly, and the sixth seal

June 20, 2011 Comments off

The sixth seal described in Revelation 6:12-14 includes a great earthquake, and the sun becoming black like sackcloth, and the moon becoming like blood, stars falling to the earth, the heavens departing as a scroll when it is rolled together, and every mountain and island being moved out of their places.

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E. B. Elliott and the sixth seal

June 19, 2011 Comments off

Edward Bishop Elliott (1793-1875) argued that the earthquake, and the moving of mountains and islands out of their positions, and the sun becoming black, and the moon becoming as blood, and stars falling to the earth, that are all part of the sixth seal, should not be taken literally. He attempted to assign those diverse signs to political changes that had occurred or would occur in history.

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William Milligan on the sixth seal

June 19, 2011 Comments off

In the opening of the sixth seal described in Revelation 6:12-14, some of the most profound, and perplexing ideas of all Bible prophecy are brought together. The sixth seal includes a great earthquake, and the sun becoming black like sackcloth, and the moon becoming like blood, stars falling to the earth, the heavens departing as a scroll when it is rolled together, and every mountain and island being moved out of their places. Naturally, Bible commentators have struggled, in their attempts to explain it.

In the light of our modern understanding of astronomy, and the vast distance of the stars from the earth, the idea of stars falling to the earth seems grotesque. Yet one of the basic ideas of modern astronomy is that all the heavenly bodies fall towards each other. This is called “Newton’s law of universal gravitation,” and it states: [1]

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