Photography by Bob Sabo

Rev 7:1-8  And after these things I saw four angels standing on the four corners of the earth, holding the four winds of the earth, that the wind should not blow on the earth, nor on the sea, nor on any tree.  (2)  And I saw another angel ascending from the east, having the seal of the living God: and he cried with a loud voice to the four angels, to whom it was given to hurt the earth and the sea,  (3)  Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads.  (4)  And I heard the number of them which were sealed: and there were sealed an hundred and forty and four thousand of all the tribes of the children of Israel.  (5)  Of the tribe of Juda were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Reuben were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Gad were sealed twelve thousand.  (6)  Of the tribe of Aser were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Nepthalim were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Manasses were sealed twelve thousand.  (7)  Of the tribe of Simeon were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Levi were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Issachar were sealed twelve thousand.  (8)  Of the tribe of Zabulon were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Joseph were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Benjamin were sealed twelve thousand.

It’s a new day and people are scurrying around getting their tasks accomplished. Some are going to work; some are retired (like me) and enjoying a slower-paced life. But what will it be like for those who are alive during the Tribulation?

We have seen through this series thus far, God’s reasons for allowing the Tribulation to occur:

  1. to wake up unbelievers
  2. to shake up the nation of Israel, and
  3. to make up the Kingdom of God

Each judgment is progressively worse. Just as a crescendo indicates an increase in loudness, during a piece of music to capture the listeners’ attention, so will each of the judgments. Here’s a short review of what we’ve covered follows:

  • The Antichrist rises to prominence (Revelation 6:1-2)
  • Wars (Revelation 6:3-4)
  • Famine and economic collapse (Revelation 6:5-6)
  • Death of many unbelievers (Revelation 6:7-8)
  • Death of some believers (Revelation 6:9-11), and
  • Universal natural catastrophes (Revelation 6:12-14)

Chapter 7 and 8 seem to remove the focus from earth’s judgments and appear parenthetical, a pause if you will. But this pause packs quite the punch! Judgments on earth have ceased in order to introduce a special people; they will receive the seal of God on their foreheads. It doesn’t say what the seal will look like. But we do know that it will set them apart from everyone else on earth. We will see later that the Antichrist’s mark will be on the right hand or forehead (Revelation 13:16). The devil’s attempt to be “god” is revealed as he tries to duplicate his own counterfeit mark. Who are these people? This chapter introduces them as the 144,000 who will be anointed in a unique and powerful way in order to preach the Gospel.

At the beginning of this chapter, we read that John has two visions. He sees four angels holding four winds; wind is often an indication of judgment, as we see here. However, we don’t see any mention of judgments in this or the next chapter. John then hears the number of those who will be sealed. Notice these are 12,000 men from each tribe of Israel, except the tribe of Dan. These are not Jehovah’s Witnesses, as believed in their doctrine. (They cannot be Jehovah’s Witnesses as they are not form the twelve tribes of Israel.) Since the tribe of Dan is not included, it makes me wonder if this is a fulfillment of Jacob’s prophecy over each tribe (Genesis 49:17): Dan shall be a serpent? Very interesting 😀

These 144,000 will be redeemed from the earth (as told to us in Revelation 14:3), and nothing will be able to overcome them until their evangelizing mission is complete. Because they are men from the tribes of Israel, they will be evangelizing to Jews. Naturally, Gentiles will hear the Gospel and will get saved as well but the main target will be Israel. The whole purpose of the Tribulation is to call the Jews back to God. This parenthetical chapter once again reveals God’s mercy in the midst of judgment! What a loving God we serve! People look at the negativity of the judgments rather than the Lord’s beautiful mercy! We will see later what will happen to those people who accept Christ as the Messiah. It will not bode well for them at all.

Where will you be during this period, reader? Will you be safe in Heaven with our Groom or will you be on earth, serving Satan and his beast? Friend, it is no coincidence that God has placed you here for such a time as this so that you may be saved if you are not already. Please click here and the link will open up in a separate tab to You Can Be Born Again and Know It!