Revelation 10

Revelation 10  •  5 min. read  •  grade level: 8
“AND I saw another mighty angel come down from heaven, clothed with a cloud: and a rainbow was upon his head, and his face was as it were the sun, and his feet as pillars of fire." (Ver. 1.) It is all-important to apprehend to whom this angel refers. He is mighty, and is seen by John come, or rather coming, down from heaven. A cloud is a well-known symbol of the presence of Jehovah. Doubtless it is the Lord in angelic garb. He is the angel of the covenant. Having a rainbow round His head shows that, in taking possession of the sea and earth (which He was about to announce His intention of doing), He remembers His covenant of old. In spite of terrible judgments which precede and accompany, His taking the kingdom, He remembers mercy which rejoices against judgment, and He will deliver many. His countenance is as the sun. Supreme power, rule and light are His. He is the Sun of righteousness, and will come with healing in His wings. But His feet are as pillars of fire. He is strong to crush His foes in searching judgment, treading them as ashes beneath His feet. He will consume the wicked.
“And he had in his hand a little book open." When Daniel received a marvelous communication in relation to His people, and their time of trouble and deliverance, he was told to shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end.
(Dan. 12:44But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased. (Daniel 12:4).) But here the angel holds an opened book in his hand. Its contents are to be understood, and about to be fulfilled. "And he set his right foot upon the sea, and his left foot on the earth, and cried with a loud voice, as when a lion roareth." (Verses 2, 3.) "Will a lion roar in the forest, when he hath no prey? will a young lion cry out of his den, if he have taken nothing?" saith the prophet Amos. (Chapter 3:4.) When Christ, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, plants His feet upon His inheritance, His right foot upon the unsettled and His left foot on the settled part thereof, He will cry with a loud voice, as of a roaring lion, for the prey is His!
“And when he had cried, seven thunders uttered their voices. And when the seven thunders had uttered their voices, I was about to write: and I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Seal up those things which the seven thunders uttered, and write them not." (Verses 3, 4.) The lion-like cry of the angel is accompanied with the utterance of the voices of seven thunders, fit symbol to usher in the announcement the angel is about to make. John apparently understood them, insomuch that he was about to write what he heard. But another voice arrested him, a voice out of heaven, and commanded him to seal up the utterances of the seven thunders, and not to write them. Hence these utterances are not revealed.
“And the angel which I saw stand upon the sea and upon the earth lifted up his hand to heaven, and swear by him that liveth forever and ever, who created heaven, and the things that therein are, and the earth, and the things that therein are, and the sea, and the things which are therein, that there should be time no longer [or no longer delay]: but in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the prophets." (Verses 5-7.) Now the angel (who, as already stated, we believe to be the Lord), standing on the sea and on the earth, lifts up his hand to heaven, and swears by Him that lives to the ages of ages, the great Creator, who by His mighty fiat called heaven, earth and sea, and all things in them into existence, that (not that there should be time no longer, as it is erroneously translated, but) there should be no longer delay. Everything was about to be closed up. The seventh angel was shortly about to sound the seventh trumpet. And in the days of the voice, when he shall begin to sound, the present delay would cease, the mystery (or secret) of God would be finished. We understand this secret of God to signify the patient invisible dealings of God with men, since evil entered the world, and His apparent indifference to it. When the seventh trumpet shall be sounded this period will close. Christ shall be manifested in power and take the kingdom. All will be accomplished, as He has declared (or made known the glad tidings) to His servants the prophets. Every prophet, as many as 1 aye spoken, has announced glad tidings in relation to that glorious day.
This brings us down to the end of the age, and to the introduction of the kingdom, as set forth in chapter 11. verses 15-18, which accordingly ends one section of the prophet's testimony. But in verse 19 the temple of God is opened in heaven, and a further prophetic testimony begins, rendered from God through the prophet, in accord with chapter 10:11. "Thou must prophesy, again." From that day onwards peoples, nations, tongues and kings have heard and read these things, which must shortly come to pass. They are unfolded from chapter 11:19 down to the close of the Revelation of Jesus Christ.