The Angel and the Small Scroll
10 Then I saw another mighty angel coming down from heaven, surrounded by a cloud, with a rainbow over his head. His face shone like the sun, and his feet were like pillars of fire. 2 And in his hand was a small scroll that had been opened. He stood with his right foot on the sea and his left foot on the land. 3 And he gave a great shout like the roar of a lion. And when he shouted, the seven thunders answered.
4 When the seven thunders spoke, I was about to write. But I heard a voice from heaven saying, “Keep secret what the seven thunders said, and do not write it down.”
5 Then the angel I saw standing on the sea and on the land raised his right hand toward heaven. 6 He swore an oath in the name of the one who lives forever and ever, who created the heavens and everything in them, the earth and everything in it, and the sea and everything in it. He said, “There will be no more delay. 7 When the seventh angel blows his trumpet, God’s mysterious plan will be fulfilled. It will happen just as he announced it to his servants the prophets.”
8 Then the voice from heaven spoke to me again: “Go and take the open scroll from the hand of the angel who is standing on the sea and on the land.”
9 So I went to the angel and told him to give me the small scroll. “Yes, take it and eat it,” he said. “It will be sweet as honey in your mouth, but it will turn sour in your stomach!” 10 So I took the small scroll from the hand of the angel, and I ate it! It was sweet in my mouth, but when I swallowed it, it turned sour in my stomach.
11 Then I was told, “You must prophesy again about many peoples, nations, languages, and kings.”
Chapter 10 is a bit of an interlude between the 6th and 7th trumpet.
To me, it is unclear what is taking place here and why. But perhaps this delay in the 7th trumpet represents God giving everyone more time to repent, giving every opportunity before the final events and judgements take place.
I find it interesting John was not allowed to record what the seven thunders said. I guess somethings are just not meant for our ears while on this earth. I can understand that, this is already very hard to comprehend what is happening. I’m betting that whatever was sealed up, not for our ears, was a mystery beyond comprehension.
To better understand this chapter, I think some study of Ezekiel and Daniel would be in order. We will recognize similar events taking place in these books, for example, the eating of the scroll and it being sweet to the taste, but sour to the stomach we see in Ezekiel 2-8. Sweet because it is the Word of God, sour because there is prophecy and judgement to pronounce.
This chapter has me confused, to be honest. I’ve read a ton of commentaries and explanations, and there are so many different views. Today I am going to declare defeat on this chapter. However, I am going to stand by the fact that despite the truth and reality of what is taking place, my salvation is secure in the Lord, and not completely understanding this will not change that one bit. Isn’t it awesome to know we can walk with this incredible confidence in our Lord!!
So today, walk boldly in your salvation. Be a shining light to those around you and be an encouragement to someone today.