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Homer Dewayne Shappley
The Fifth Trumpet of Revelation 9
"Out of the smoke locusts came
“And [they] were given power like that of scorpions of the earth.”
Another prophecy of Revelation for centuries XX and XXI?
"Then from the smoke came locusts on the earth, and they were given authority like the authority of scorpions of the earth. 4 They were told not to damage the grass of the earth or any green growth or any tree, but only those people who do not have the seal of God on their foreheads. 5 They were allowed to torture them for five months, but not to kill them, and their torture was like the torture of a scorpion when it stings someone. 6 And in those days people will seek death but will not find it; they will long to die, but death will flee from them.” NRSVA
The format of Scene 1 is retained.
D. "Then from the smoke came locusts on the earth." Revelation 9:3
A realistic painting of locusts coming down on the earth as projected in the vision of the Fifth Trumpet.
1. What are these "locusts?”
a) Surely, they are not the insect
called "locust." Rather they
represent human beings. As we
saw in Scene 1, the “star” of the
Fifth Trumpet, the “smoke… the sun and the air” are symbolical. So then, logically, also the “locusts.” Their “authority” (“power” in most translations), actions, and phantasmagorical “appearance” are not properties of the real locust, an insect of the Acrididae family. On the other hand, those properties are most proper for metaphorical applications to different types of human beings when considering their mentalities and procedures. I proceed to explore possible applications and cordially invite you to accompany me.
b) Analyzing the parameters of the vision-prophecy of the Fifth Trumpet and reviewing the history of the Common Era (Christian Age), with special attention to the 20th and 21st centuries, I conclude these “locusts” symbolize human beings, deceived by Satan, who govern countries, as well as those who carry out the will of the deceived rulers, as is projected by the prophecies of the Sixth Bowl of God’s wrath. Particularly, during the “little while” when the nations, having been deceived again, will be dominated by powerful satanic influences. Revelation 16:12-16; 20:1-10
c) These rulers of the deceived nations of the world, together with all who serve them and all who support their platforms, are, indeed, like a great plague of locusts that leave threadbare the multicolor moral-social-racial-political-spiritual fabric of the masses they govern, causing them intense grief and great anguish in what they consider vital aspects of their lives.
d) Among these “locusts” (deceived men and women) that come “on the earth” during the “five months” of the “little while” are to be found, as I interpret the vision:
(1) All those human beings who prepare, produce and spread the propaganda of deceived rulers.
(2) All the devotees, opportunists, counselors, and masses of government workers who serve the deceived rulers. Security personnel, secret agencies, police, national guards, military, office workers, etc., who are on the scenes during those dark “five months.”
Heinrich Himmler, head of the SS in Nazi Germany, and other leaders of that security and terror organization. Some of the worst “locusts” of the Fifth Trumpet of Revelation 9.
For example, the Schutzstaffel (SS), an arm of the Nazi Party of Germany during the Second World War (1939 – 1945) dedicated to vigilance and terror. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_War_II_casualties#Nazi_Germany
The KGB (Russian: Комитет государственной безопасности (КГБ), principal security agency of the Soviet Union from March 13, 1954, to December 3, 1991. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/KGB
(3) All the advisors, professors, teachers, philosophers, psychologists, sociologists, and other professionals who promote and defend the evil beliefs and agendas prevalent during the prophetical “five months” that the Fifth Trumpet covers.
Above. Teachers come together to make known their positions on various issues and state their demands. Teachers at all levels and in all kinds of educational institutions: A very influential, life-forming power capable of much good and just as capable of much harm in the realms of morals, attitudes, lifestyles, conduct, philosophies, and beliefs.
e) To my understanding, these infernal “locusts” work right along with three other creatures as bad as they are, to wit: The three “frogs” that come out of the mouths of the dragon, beast, and prophet, these repulsive “frogs” being “three foul spirits,” “demonic spirits,” identified in Revelation 16:13-14.
(1) In both texts, the prophecies are about events of the “little while.” The ones of the Fifth Trumpet are limited specifically to “five months” of the “little while.”
(2) Though the linguistic symbols used to communicate the prophecies are different, they, nevertheless, project the same kind of satanic works.
(3) Let it be noted that in both texts the works of Satan are carried out in all the earth. The phrase in Revelation 9:3 is “on the earth,” there being no limitations set, while in Revelation 16:14 the parallel expression is “the whole world.”
Though I think it is not rigorously necessary to conclude that “on the earth” means absolutely every small village and even every rural area on the face of the entire planet Earth, it is no less certain that the renewed deceiving of secular nations during the “little while” will be general and worldwide according to the prophetical projections.
(4) The prophecies of the Fifth Trumpet contain substantially more information on Satan’s actions during the “little while” than the shorter vision-prophecy of the “three foul spirits like frogs.” Revelation 16:13-14
2. Where do these “locusts” come from? They come out of the “smoke from the shaft” of the “bottomless pit.” Revelation 9:1-3
a) Enormous quantities of “smoke from the shaft” of the “bottomless pit” were released around planet Earth during the 20th century, resulting in two World Wars, plus the wars of Korea, China, Vietnam, Cambodia, Afghanistan, Iraq, those between Israel and Arab countries, those in Africa, and those between eastern European countries such as Albania, Serbia, Croatia, Herzegovina, and Macedonia. Also resulting in: Genocides, pogroms, mass exiles, barbaric tortures, famines, and plagues. In addition, “smoke like the smoke from a great furnace" came from billions of publications of all kinds, public gatherings, clandestine meetings, radio and television programs, videos, and the Internet.
b) During the last four decades of the 20th century and the time that has lapsed so far of the 21st century, incredible quantities of “smoke,” differing
notably in composition from that coming from deceived rulers and the terrible wars and atrocities they unleashed on humanity, has been coming from educational entities, government agencies, social organizations, and movements, even from certain religions, including some churches of Christendom.
From teachers in kindergartens, elementary schools, and high schools,
both public and private. From professors of colleges, universities
and Internet schools of all kinds. From politicians of many
different stripes. From doctors, philosophers, psychiatrists, and
counselors in different specialties. From a great part of the
population as a whole, outstanding among them: Declared
atheists, skeptics, humanists, hedonists, Darwinian
evolutionists, existentialists, freethinkers, and the totally
secular who are virtually without moral or spiritual values.
“SMOKE,” thick and hot, of asseverations and controversies on sexual identity separate and apart from biological identity, same sex partners and marriages, adoption of children by homosexuals, sexual partners without marriage, unnatural relationships, abortion, abnormal lifestyles, different kinds of families, personal rights, racial rights, curriculums in educational
institutions, freedom of expression, equality of the sexes in every aspect, inclusion and tolerance without barriers, negation and distortion of realities on a large scale, etc., etc.
c) Physically, how does smoke affect a human being? It disorients, blinds, poisons, and suffocates. Metaphorically, it does the same intellectually, morally, and spiritually to people, the “locusts” of the Fifth Trumpet, who come out of the “smoke from the shaft of the bottomless pit.” They are disoriented, their vision blurred, their understanding darkened, and their spirit poisoned.
Consequently, it is not reasonable to expect they would act sanely, guided at least by a little common sense and some natural understanding of right and wrong, but rather irrationally, carnally, egotistically, even violently, impelled by sentimentalism and dark, sensual agendas laced with purple personal passions and reddish strands of willful ignorance both of history and normal, realistic, intelligent human reasoning and conduct.
As a matter of fact, according to other details of the prophecy, that is just the way people who occupy positions of influence and power act during the “little while,” of which the “five months” of this prophecy are a part. “Woe, woe, woe to the inhabitants of the earth!" (Revelation 8:13) because of these “locusts” (men and women) disoriented, blind, poisoned and even crazed by the “smoke from the shaft of the bottomless pit.”
3. Let us consider the “power” that the “locusts” of this vision have, as also their actions during the prophetical “five months” of the “little while.”
a) Their “power” is similar to the “power” that “scorpions of the earth” have: They poison but they do not kill. Revelation 9:3 y 10
b) Their “power” does not include the right “to damage the grass of the earth or any green growth or any tree.” Revelation 9:4. That is, the mission of these “locusts” is not to damage
natural resources of this category. Their malevolent mission is altogether different: To do serious damage to human beings of a very particular category!
c) They can do damage to “only those people who do not have the seal of God on their foreheads.” Revelation 9:4
(1) The “seal of God” is the same as the seal of the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 1:13-14), that is, the approval of God which is acquired by “obedience to the truth” of God. 1 Peter 1:22; John 8:32; Acts 2:36-47
(2) The “locusts” can harm “only” those who do not have the seal of God. Stressing this point: THEY DO NOT HAVE IT! So then, this prophecy does not focus on Christians loyal to God but only on people who elect not to follow God during the prophetical “five months” of the “little while.”
d) Who are these peoples not converted to God during those “five months?”
(1) Inferentially, they are the inhabitants of the world who are not genuine Christians. However, neither are they “locusts,” for the “locusts” persecute them. Indeed, three classes of human beings are identified in the relevant prophecies of Revelation for the period of time called the “little while.”
(a) The oppressors, represented by the “locusts” who, of course, do no have the “seal of God.”
(b) The oppressed. These are the rest of the inhabitants of the world who do not have the “seal of God.”
(c) The persecuted. These are the true Christians that closely follow the New Testament (of false ones there are always a great number). With regard to deceived secular rulers under the influence of Satan, although they do not sympathize with genuine Christians, they may be strongly inclined to tolerate them because they submit themselves to those in authority as long as they are not obligated to violate their spiritual principals. Romans 13:1-7, Acts 4:1-22. To be sure, it is implied that Christians truly faithful to the Lord are not victims of the “locusts” during the onslaught of the “locusts… with the power of scorpions,” since these “locusts” are authorized to torment only those people who do not have the “seal of God.”
(2) Why do faithful Christians not figure in the scenarios revealed in the Fifth Trumpet? A thought: Maybe because God desired to focus exclusively on the sad condition of people not converted to Christ who are tormented by the “locusts,” not complicating the prophecy with details related to the condition of loyal Christians during the same period.
Whatever the case, intellectually and spiritually, true Christians would not be easy pray for the “locusts” with their poison of “scorpions,” because Christians really faithful to the Lord always have their understanding illuminated by the brilliant light of the sun of the pure Truth. Duly informed by relevant prophecies, they quickly perceive the “smoke” of the “shaft of the bottomless pit,” identify its evil source, understand what it is, and sagaciously distinguish between that “smoke” and the clarity of the Truth, taking the necessary steps to keep the “smoke” from addling or killing them. 1 Thessalonians 5:1-7
19 “We have also a right sure word of prophecy, to which, if you take heed as to a light that shines in a dark place, you do well, until the day dawns and the day star arises in your hearts. 20 And first understand this: that no prophecy in the scripture has any private interpretation. 21 For the scripture never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit."
2 Peter 1:19-21
Text and Document Composition by Homer Dewayne Shappley
Scene 3. The "locusts torment" people who do "not have the seal of God."
Category. Revelation: Its Ongoing Relevancy and Fulfillment. Commentary.
Revelation 10:6. Going out into the FUTURE to the LAST DAY of TIME. Looking back at planet Earth in the 20th and 21st centuries.