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Composite title graphic for the Two Witnesses of Revelation 11, showing the globe of planet Earth on the parched, broken ground of a field and stormy skies on the left side and wide rays of light orange light on the other.

Chapter Four of this CommentaryPart 6.

The Sixth Trumpet of Revelation
Also called "the second woe."

Chapters 9, 10, and 11
of the Book of Revelation

Scene 10 of the Sixth Trumpet     Part 1     Revelation 11:7 

The Two Witnesses Finish Their Testimony

Revelation for the 20th and 21st Centuries

Composite graphic of three ministers of Christ with tape over their mouths and a fourth on a platform speaking to only two people, with a large pulpit, empty pulpit in the foreground, all against a somber background cloudy skies, title graphic for The Two Witnesses Finish Their Testimony, War Against Them, and Their Death.

The outline of previous Scenes is continued.

V. "When they have finished their testimony, the beast that comes up from the bottomless pit will make war on them and conquer them and kill them." Revelation 11:7 NRSVA (New Revised Standard Version, Anglicised). Almost all versions read “will make war on them,” and not the weaker “will attack them” of the NIV.

A. "When they have finished their testimony..."

1. The Two Witnesses finish their testimony when the "1,260 days" end, whatever may be the duration in real time of this number interpreted as symbolical in this commentary. “Symbolical, that is to say, not necessarily exactly 1,260 days of 24 hours each, but, nevertheless, a specific period of time to be understood in correlation to the “short time” (Revelation 20:3), the thousand years (Revelation 20:3, 6-7), the “five months(Revelation 9:5), or any other time-age parameter of Revelation.

To posit that these different time parameters of Revelation are synonymous, all covering the entire Common Era (Christian Age), seems, on the surface, contrary to common sense, and would, indeed, rob them of their obvious individual significance on the overall timeline of Revelation. “Contrary to common sense, because, if the entire Common Era is, timewise, a single whole without distinctive periods of time along its axis, then why complicate the New Testament scenarios of prophecies and visions by injecting such temporal elements as a “thousand years,” “forty-two months,” "1,260 days," a “short time,” or five months (Part f) of the document)?”

An example of applying all the different Revelation time periods to the “entire Christian Age” is the following statement. “They witness for 1,260 days, a period of time signifying the entire Christian era.” Copyright © 2007 by J. Daniel Hays, J. Scott Duvall, and C. Marvin Pate. Commentary on the Two Witnesses, in the Dictionary of Biblical Prophecy and End Times, as published in https://www.biblegateway.com.

In the revelations of the Sixth Trumpet, the Two Witnesses prophesy “for 1,260 days.” Before those days begin, the events prophesied by Trumpets One, Two, Three, Four, and Five have taken place. Also, those of Scenes One through Five of the Sixth Trumpet. After the 1,260 days come to an end, the Two Witnesses do not continue prophesying. Still, other developments await them.

2. The “1,260 days” do not encompass the entire period identified as the “short time. Revelation 20:3. We can be sure of this because other events take place AFTER the Two Witnesses finish their testimony. Some of those events are the following:

a) “…the beast that comes up from the bottomless pit will make war on them and conquer them and kill them." When does “…the beast accomplish these terrible, despicable deeds? Precisely, when the Two Witnesses “have finished their testimony and the 1,260 days of their special ministry have ended. His actions do not take place during those days, but in what remains of the “short time.”

Colorful, multielement Revelation timeline showing the relative positions of the Millennium, the Short Time, the 1,260 days of the Two Witnesses' Ministry, Harmagedon, and the Second Coming of Jesus Christ.

b) The Two Witnesses are killed AFTER the end of the 1,260 days. The uncommon “war” the beast makes against the Two Witnesses is the decisive and fulminating one that results in their DEATH! 

“…the beastwill make war on them and… KILL them." This “war” is the one called “Harmagedon. A heavy, steely, frightening name that, just like the word “Apocalypse, has become a part of the English language today.

Image of the cover of a publication intitled Harmagedon, in reds and yellows, with a menacing face, plus a male and a female projecting violence and destruction.

And be it duly noted that “Harmagedon,just as in the case of “Apocalypse, is used and seen today, in the 21st century, in comics, magazines, books, videos, and movies by multitudes of all age groups, especially youth, who have no knowledge of its original use in the book of Revelation. Too bad for them, unless they become informed and act wisely, for the real “Harmagedon” will suddenly come upon them when they are saying “Peace and security…  as labor pains come upon a pregnant woman, and there will be no escape!” 1 Thessalonians 5:1-3

c) Once these Two Witnesses have been killed, their “dead bodies” will be exposed “in the street of the great city that is prophetically called Sodom and Egypt… for three and a half days,” a fact revealed in Revelation 11:9. Subject of Scene 11.

d) When these three and half days end, they stand up on their feet and, hearing “a loud voice from heaven saying to them ‘Come up here!’ immediately “they went up to heaven in a cloud.” Revelation 11:11-12. Subject of Scene 12.

e) Then, as related in Revelation 11:12, God brings on “their enemies,” as also on planet Earth in general, the explosion of destructive phenomena presented in Revelation 11:13; 16:18-21 y 19:11-21. Subject of Trumpet 7.

Thus, it is fully confirmed that the 1,260 days do not cover the entire “short time,” seeing that other events follow them on up to the end of the material universe itself.

A graphical timeline for Revelation, showing the relative positions of the short time, the 1,260 days of the Two Witnesses' ministry, a short interval between that time and the third woe and the return of Christ.

3. Taking the necessary precaution to place all these events on the timeline correctly, we observe that all of them take place before the Seventh Trumpet sounds, an action that signals the end of material time and dimensions. Revelation 10:5-7

The testimony of the Two Witnesses comes to an end, and the beast from the bottomless pit makes war against them, killing them. All this occurs before the sounding of the Seventh Trumpet, which is the “third woe” that comes “very soon” after the “second woe” concludes with the ascension of the Two Witnesses to heaven. Revelation 11:14-15. We take note of the fact that there is a short interval between the “second woe” and the “third woe,” as indicated by the statement “The second woe has passed. The third woe is coming very soon.” Revelation 11:14. As illustrated in the above timeline graphic.

4. Obviously, the Two Witnesses do not prophesy nor testify during the last great spiritual “war” (Harmagedon) of the Common Era (Christian Age). And it goes without saying that they do not during the three and a half days when they are dead.

Do these facts mean that the gospel is not proclaimed to atheists, humanists, secularists, and all other defiant souls during the time of that last “war” between the forces of good and evil, neither during the “short interval” that comes between the “second woe” and the “third woe?” Indeed, that would really seem to be the only logical inference.

After all, why preach the gospel to them? They have already heard, in one way or another, to some degree or another, at some time or another, the prophecies and testimonies that tormented them into silencing those who dared publish them, going so far as to kill some. Their only recourse now is to repent, but that they adamantly refuse to do despite the plagues and other catastrophes unleashed on them with that specific purpose of persuading them to repent! But, sadly, they are so hardened in their resistance to God and his people, so perverted and depraved, so secular and humanistic, so atheistic, sensual, and worldly, that neither the good news that God still loves them and only desires them to repent nor his punishments on them because they obdurately and angrily resist his every effort to break through to them, do not make a dent in the devil’s armor they boldly and flauntingly sport.

For them, the time of grace and salvation is up. They shut down the preaching of the “eternal gospel,and now they are shut out of the eternal Kingdom forever. God graciously grants them time and opportunity to return to his spiritual family, even punishing them as a father punishes a persistently wayward son or daughter,

Bible-closed-chain-heavy-1200-Export.jpg

powerfully motivated by deep, spiritual relationships, for he is the only original and rightful “Father of spirits.” Hebrews 12:7-11. But they will not hear of it, for they left his house and  cast their lot with another “father… the devil… the father of lies.”  John 8:44. And, verily, they love his"darkness” (John 3:19-21), putting “darkness for light and light for darkness” (Isaiah 5:20), calling their way, that of “enlightenment,” and themselves, “the enlightened,” though they are, in reality, purely and simply, “children of darkness.” 1 Thessalonians 5:4-8. It is not surprising, then, that they continually make fun of the mercy God nobly, magnanimously, and patiently proffers them, blaspheming him because of the plagues they so foolishly bring on themselves. Revelation 16:21

Thus, there is “no remedy” for them, ignominiously trampling along, as they do, in the steps of the rebellious Israelites in the time of king Zedekiah.

“But they kept mocking the messengers of God, despising his words, and scoffing at his prophets, until the wrath of the Lord against his people became so great that there was no remedy.” 2 Chronicles 36:16

When does God take fulminating, terminal reprisal against human beings who relentlessly reject him no matter what he does? Only when there is “NO REMEDY!

Armor-Satan-modern-868.jpg

Set it down in Stone. Publish it on billboards. On the Internet and television. In social media. In printed media. So that he will not be misrepresented and maligned as an “arbitrary, cruel, violent, and vengeful god impatient to wrath and quick to cast into hellfire.” For, in reality, he is just the opposite of all that!

When it comes to rebellious souls, his “forbearance and patience” are admirable to the highest degree. Marvelous attributes which his blind, entrenched enemies do not appreciate, nor can they until their Satanic armor is blasted from their hearts, minds, and spirits, and they humbly recognize his magnanimous mindset, his profound love, and his goodwill toward all people in general, desiring the salvation of each and every one. 1 Timothy 2:1-5; Romans 12:2

“Or do you despise the riches of his kindness and forbearance and patience? Do you not realize that God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance?” Romans 2:4

Your evaluation of this study will be greatly appreciated. hshappley@yahoo.com

Category. Revelation: Its Ongoing Relevancy and Fulfillment. Commentary.

Revelation 9:1-4. Smoke from the Bottomless Pit comes out of not a few universities, their faculties, and student bodies.

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.

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