Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Revelation 9:7-11

Revelation 9:7-11
In appearance the locusts were like horses prepared for battle: on their heads were what looked like crowns of gold; their faces were like human faces, their hair like women's hair, and their teeth like lions' teeth; they had breastplates like breastplates of iron, and the noise of their wings was like the noise of many chariots with horses rushing into battle. They have tails and stings like scorpions, and their power to hurt people for five months is in their tails. They have as king over them the angel of the bottomless pit. His name in Hebrew is Abaddon, and in Greek he is called Apollyon.

Thoughts for Today

First Thought:

Before we return to the locusts, let’s look at the person that is called king over the locusts.  The Hebrew word given is Abaddon.  The Greek word is Apollyon.  Both words have the same meaning: destruction.  I find this to support a great Biblical truth that we often ignore. Satan isn’t here to gain more supporters than God.  Satan’s not in a popularity war against God.  What Satan is interested in doing is destroying our relationship with God.  He doesn’t care so much that we are on His side.  He cares that he has pulled us away from God, His grace, and His mercy.  He truly is destruction.  Satan desires to destroy relationship between humanity and its Creator.

What is your perspective on Satan?  How does this perspective in Revelation mesh with perspectives like John 10:10 and 1 Peter 5:8?

Second Thought:

As we return to the locusts, notice that it appears that a single generation of locusts will inflict this pain upon humanity.  We’ve heard that the locusts will harm humanity for five months.  This would be roughly the length of the growing season – roughly the span of a single season that locusts would plague an area.  What is John saying?  There could be multiple interpretations.  He could be saying that we don’t need to be plagued by the generations of sin before us; we have enough sin in ourselves to plague us on our own!  It could also be that John is reflecting the leadership of the world around us.  In John’s day, the Emperor Domitian was busy torturing the Christians and bringing persecution to them.  It very well could be that John is making the point that a single generation of poor leadership can inflict great amounts of persecution upon human beings under the leadership.  Any of these points can be true.  I find them all believable, to be honest.

Where have your sins impacted your life?  What persecution does your own sinfulness bring into your life?  Where have you seen poor leadership impact the world around you in a negative way?

Third Thought:

When we consider the locusts themselves, we clearly see an analogy at work.  The locusts have all the things that drag down humanity into sin.  The locusts have crowns of gold (greed).  The look like human beings, with hair like a woman (self-centeredness and vanity).   They have sharp teeth like a lion (power to devour and consume the world around it to dominate over it).  They have breastplates of iron (relying upon our own strength and ability to protect ourselves).  They make an incredible noise (Often focused on the wrong things, creating a busy life with little seen purpose).  Once more we see that these locusts symbolize a plague – perhaps even a plague that we bring upon ourselves through our own sinful nature.

Where are you guilty of the things mentioned here that are symbolized in the locusts?  How can you resist the temptation to be like these locusts?

Passage for Tomorrow: Revelation 9:12-21
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