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JESUS

His Trumpets

CHAPTER 11

We have seen the developments of principle described in the seals which were opened by Jesus. He revealed the way in which the history of the truth reveals itself. Under the seventh seal we can find the seven trumpets which show in detail the way in which the process of the rejection of truth takes place.

Through the centuries, a clear development of principle has been made manifest in regard to the Lord's dealing with His professed people. The first evident step is the removing of God's people from the world. This removal takes the children of God from worldly customs, maxims and ideas, as well as the sins of Egypt. This is described in prophecy as God calling His children from Egypt. The people of God are now united against the world and they form a solid front.

As time passes, there is a great falling away. First of all, this takes apparently innocent forms, such as the observance of pagan holidays and customs. The people say, "After all, we do not want to appear too strange. We don't want people to accuse us of fanatical practices." As time goes on, there is a total involvement with the world and its policies. Today, Christmas and other holidays have totally involved millions. This sentimental attraction to earth, as well as debt, contributes largely to keeping many bound to the things of this world. The apostle Paul illustrated this principle in II Thessalonians 2:3. "Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition." Israel did not receive its promise until there was a great falling away. Israel was at its lowest when the expected Messiah finally came upon the scene.

Who Is The Great Whore?

The Reformation did not come until the great falling away of the Roman church. The Roman church slowly involved itself with worldly religion until it became the great whore as described in the Scriptures. Protestantism came forth from the Roman church as the pure virgin to spread the truth of Christ's righteousness in all the earth. When that movement degraded to forms, God caused a great religious awakening, calling His people out of apostasy. These believers announced the imminent return of Jesus and the necessity for Christians to obey all of God's commandments. But, after generations of declension in that movement, the Lord has now brought forth His own righteousness, even the Lord Our Righteousness. This is not new light, but the old light on a new lamp stand. The principle is revealed in the seed. "Thou fool, that which thou sowest is not quickened [made alive], except it die." (1 Corinthians 15:36) It is also expressed by Jesus this way. "No man putteth a piece of new cloth unto an old garment, for that which is put in to fill it up taketh from the garment, and the rent is made worse. Neither do men put new wine into old bottles: else the bottles break, and the wine runneth out, and the bottles perish: but they put new wine into new bottles, and both are preserved." (Matt. 9:16-17) The Roman church became great Babylon. The reformed churches became its daughters.

New Wine New Bottle

It has been proven through history that the "old bottle" has not been able to receive the "new wine." In each case, the old garment had to be replaced with a new one. A new house had to be established to receive the fulfillment of the dream hoped for in the old house. This was not arbitrary, for in each instance of reformation the "mother" had the opportunity to receive the new wine. To this day, the mother never has taken it. The mother "church" had to die to give birth to life. The seed had to die before the new plant could grow.

The process of this is made quite evident in the book of Revelation. "Trumpet after trumpet is to be sounded, vial after vial poured out one after another upon the inhabitants of the earth." (7BC 982) As one views the seven trumpets, one can see the way in which the old plant is brought to extinction so that the new plant can grow and prosper. This same principle is made evident in the Old Testament as well. A trumpet is an announcement. "And I saw the seven angels which stood before God; and to them were given seven trumpets." (Rev. 8:2) The trumpets are given to the messengers of God. It would do little good to sound trumpets if no one heard them. The principle is evident. "I was shown that the third angel, proclaiming the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus, represents the people who receive this message and raise the voice of warning...." (1T 77) "No one hears the voice of these angels, for they are a symbol to represent the people of God. ...Men and women, enlightened by the Spirit of God and sanctified through the truth, proclaim the three messages in their order." (2 SM 387)

Our War Is Spiritual

Some have suggested that the trumpets represented things upon the earth that could be seen, such as warfare and war machines. The apostle Paul helps illustrate the nature of our battles as well as the prophetic ideas concerning them. "For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places." (Ephesians6:12) The seven trumpets, then, are seven announcements to the world given by God's people. These are announcements that give vision to the realities of the spiritual world and wickedness in high places.

We hear an announcement that is given by reason of the intercession of the angel mentioned in Revelation chapter 8, verses 3 and 4. "And another angel came and stood at the altar, having a golden censer; and there was given unto him much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne. And the smoke of the incense, which came with the prayers of the saints, ascended up before God out of the angel's hand." What were the prayers of the saints? We can find the answer to this in Revelation 6:9-10. "And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held: and they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?"

Here, mentioned, is the cry of the saints who have given their testimony and were killed for it. It would not do violence to principle to say that these could also include those who were killed [hated] in Babylon for sharing the gift. There was much bloodshed as the saints returned home week after week from their "church", killed for the testimony which they bore in their Sabbath school classes. When they arrived home, they would pray, "How long, O Lord, till you avenge us?" "How long must we be killed for our testimony?" These are the prayers that were heard by the angel, and the trumpets now are soon to blow. God's people are to make an announcement.

"The first angel sounded, and there followed hail and fire mingled with blood, and they were cast upon the earth: and the third part of trees was burnt up, and all green grass was burnt up."(Rev. 8:7) When apostasy raises its head, the Lord sends help. He desires that healing might be made possible. He sends messages of warning to bring His people to repentance. "And I will plead against him with pestilence and with blood; and I will rain upon him, and upon his hands, and upon the many people that are with him, and overflowing rain, and great hailstones, fire, and brimstone." (Eze. 38:22)

When judgment first comes to a "church", men are raised who will speak against the sins of the prevailing age. "Judgment also will I lay to the line, and righteousness to the plummet: and the hail shall sweep away the refuge of lies...." (Isaiah 28:17) Hail is described here as breaking down the lie that apostasy has built up. When the lies are swept away, it makes it easier for people to make an intelligent decision. Fire also is used. Jesus said, "I am come to send fire on the earth; and what will I, if it be already kindled?" (Luke 12:49) When Jesus came as fire and hail, He came to save His nation. He sought to seek men out and help them see the way of salvation. He came with a sword and said, "Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword." (Matt. 10:34) This sword that Jesus brought was the cause of the blood of the first trumpet. "The sword of the Lord is filled with blood...." (Isaiah 34:6)

Hail, Fire And Blood

Today, God's people come to the apostate religion with the same hail, fire and blood. The first trumpet sounded. This first trumpet was mixed with mercy so that men might understand and know the truth. The Christians in these congregations were there with intercession so that whoever might desire the way of the Lord, would find healing. Even so, all those who were weak were slain. This was the grass. A third part of the trees were killed. When those in Israel turned against Jesus, they were found wanting. A third of those trees likewise perished by refusing the light. Some, like the apostle Paul, were still standing when the first angel sounded in that day; and some, like him today, remained standing during the time of the first announcement.

"And the second angel sounded, and as it were a great mountain burning with fire was cast into the sea: and the third part of the sea became blood; and the third part of the creatures which were in the sea, and had life, died; and the third part of the ships were destroyed." (Rev. 8:8-9) The second trumpet gives the message that the professed people of God are poisoning the earth. They have become Babylon and are like a mountain on fire cast into the sea. "And I will render unto Babylon and to all the inhabitants of Chaldea all their evil that they have done in Zion in your sight, saith the Lord. Behold, I am against thee, O destroying mountain, saith the Lord, which destroyest all the earth: and I will stretch out mine hand upon thee, and roll thee down from the rocks, and will make thee a burnt mountain." (Jer. 51:24-25) The seas that this great burnt mountain fell into are the peoples and nations and tongues that she touched. "...The waters which thou sawest, where the whore sitteth, are peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues." (Rev. 17:15)

Many have been destroyed because of the acts of this great apostasy. All of her daughters have caused the nations to groan. Jesus warned the people of His day. He reached out for them and sought to save them with His rebuke. He realized that His own nation was as a poisonous mountain in the seas of the people. "Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves." (Matt. 23:15) The same is true today with professed Christianity. They have become a burning mountain cast into the sea. Many die because of it. The second trumpet is this announcement.

A Great Star Fell

"And the third angel sounded, and there fell a great star from heaven, burning as it were a lamp, and it fell upon the third part of the rivers, and upon the fountains of waters; and the name of the star is called Wormwood: and the third part of the waters became wormwood; and many men died of the waters, because they were made bitter." (Rev. 8:10-11) Here a star burns as a light, yet it is fallen. Not only is this light fallen, but also it is poisonous as wormwood. Wormwood is the state of those who leave off righteousness. Their judgment is poisonous to the people. "Ye who turn judgment to wormwood, and leave off righteousness in the earth...." (Amos 5:7) The people are turned to fables. They do not live righteously, so the Lord gives them their desire. The ministers in the apostate church teach fables and lead the people astray with peace and safety; so God gives them what they want. "Therefore thus saith the Lord of hosts concerning the prophets; Behold, I will feed them with wormwood, and make them drink the water of gall: for from the prophets of Jerusalem is profaneness gone forth into all the land." (Jer. 23:15)

The waters which previously flowed sweet and pure are now bitter and gall. The lukewarm, leavened teaching of these priests and prophets caused the waters, which were to satisfy the thirst of the people, to become poison to them. The third trumpet was the announcement of this terrible fact. Jesus said, "Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men's bones, and of all uncleanness. Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity." (Matt. 23:27-28) Outwardly this star looked like a light, but inside it was wormwood. History has repeated itself once again.

"And the fourth angel sounded, and the third part of the sun was smitten, and the third part of the moon, and the third part of the stars; so as the third part of them was darkened, and the day shone not for a third part of it, and the night likewise." (Rev. 8:12) The great lights who profess to be leaders in Israel are herewith rebuked. The lights in the heavens will not give their light. "For the stars of heaven and the constellations thereof shall not give their light: the sun shall be darkened in his going forth, and the moon shall not cause her light to shine." (Isaiah 13:10) Instead of sharing the light that God was pleased to give them, these luminaries refused to give this light in its fullness, but darkened it down so that the people would not be unduly agitated. The lights have "healed the hurt of the daughter of my people slightly, saying, Peace, peace; when there is no peace"(Jer. 6:14), but they would not heal the people fully with the full light of day. This is the last warning before the woes are pronounced.

God's People Leave Her Now

The four trumpets sounded by God's people in Babylon were sufficient to warn her of her impending doom. The apostate church would not listen. She broke her vow and refused to shine. She refused to repent. The people of God would now leave her. Jesus said to the church of His day, "Behold, your house is left unto you desolate. For I say unto you, Ye shall not see me henceforth, till ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord." (Matt. 23:38-39) Today, God's children have had to say to the apostate church, "Behold your house is left unto you desolate; you shall not see me again until you can say blessed is he that comes in the name of the Lord."

"Here and there an individual member of a family is true to the convictions of his conscience and is compelled to stand alone in his family or in the church to which he belongs, and is finally compelled, because of the course of those with whom he associates, to separate himself from their companionship. The line of demarkation is made distinct. One stands upon the word of God, the others upon the traditions and sayings of men." (3RH 169) "And it shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall beat off from the channel of the river unto the stream of Egypt, and ye shall be gathered one by one, O ye children of Israel. And it shall come to pass in that day, that the great trumpet shall be blown, and they shall come which were ready to perish in the land of Assyria, and the outcasts in the land of Egypt, and shall worship the Lord in the holy mount at Jerusalem." (Isaiah 27:12-13) Jesus Himself now separated from those He would have saved. So it is in this age. Believers are compelled to separate from the wormwood and darkness which would consume them if they did not separate. As they separate from their former brethren, woes are now pronounced upon the people left in Babylon because there are no more intercessors in her halls. There is no voice left to give the warning.


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