15 March 2010 ©Homer Kizer
The Sixth Seal
When he opened the sixth seal, I looked, and behold, there was a great earthquake, and the sun became black as sackcloth, the full moon became like blood, and the stars of the sky fell to the earth as the fig tree sheds its winter fruit when shaken by a gale. The sky vanished like a scroll that is being rolled up, and every mountain and island was removed from its place. Then the kings of the earth and the great ones and the generals and the rich and the powerful, and everyone, slave and free, hid themselves in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains, calling to the mountains and rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of him who is seated on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb, for the great day of their wrath has come, and who can stand?” (Rev 6:12–17)
Each commentary within this Rereading Prophecy series strives to be a self-contained essay, meaning that similar information will appear in each commentary and the same example year for the Second Passover will be used.
If the Second Passover were to occur on or near the second Passover in 2011, every person who by the person’s mouth claims to be a “Christian” and believes that the Father raised Jesus from the dead will be suddenly filled with and empowered by the divine breath of God on or about May 19th. If this person wasn’t previously born of God—most will not be so born—then this person will suddenly receive spiritual life as the first Adam suddenly received physical life. This person will receive spiritual life as the angels suddenly received life. But the caveat is the same as the caveat concerning natural Israel’s liberation from physical slavery to a physical king in Egypt: the Lord will give the lives of men (the firstborn of men that are already His) as ransom for spiritual life being given to Christians, life that fills them to the extent there is no longer sin and death dwelling within them.
Christians will universally argue that they already have indwelling eternal life; that they are already born of God; that they are no longer under the first covenant but that they are under the New Covenant, which has the Torah written on hearts and placed in minds so that every person Knows the Lord. However, their claim that they are presently under the New Covenant is prime facie evidence that they are not born of God. If they were born of God, their minds would not be set on the things of the flesh such as governance of this world, wealth, possessions, children and grandchildren; they would not be hostile to God, refusing to submit to God’s law. They would want to keep the commandments and would do everything in their power to walk uprightly before God. They would rebel against the lawlessness of this world. And this is not what’s seen in the Christian Church, which has the same divorce rate as the world; which has the same ethical problems as the world has; which is very much of the world.
Jesus said that an Israelite needs to believe the writings of Moses before this person can believe His words (John 5:47) … the first covenant was made with the fathers of Israel on the day when the Lord took them by the hand to bring them out of Egypt (Heb 8:9; Jer 31:32), not weeks later at Sinai. This first covenant is the Passover covenant to which much was added as rebellion occurred, but this first covenant remains the Passover covenant which has its initial terms:
And the Lord said to Moses and Aaron, “This is the statute of the Passover: no foreigner shall eat of it, but every slave that is bought for money may eat of it after you have circumcised him. No foreigner or hired servant may eat of it. It shall be eaten in one house; you shall not take any of the flesh outside the house, and you shall not break any of its bones. All the congregation of Israel shall keep it. If a stranger shall sojourn with you and would keep the Passover to the Lord, let all his males be circumcised. Then he may come near and keep it; he shall be as a native of the land. But no uncircumcised person shall eat of it. There shall be one law for the native and for the stranger who sojourns among you.” /All the people of Israel did just as the Lord commanded Moses and Aaron. And on that very day the Lord brought the people of Israel out of the land of Egypt by their hosts. (Ex 12:43–51 emphasis added)
The Lord said to Moses, “Consecrate to me all the firstborn. Whatever is the first to open the womb among the people of Israel, both of man and of beast, is mine.” / Then Moses said to the people, “Remember this day in which you came out from Egypt, out of the house of slavery, for by a strong hand the Lord brought you out from this place. No leavened bread shall be eaten. Today, in the month of Abib, you are going out. And when the Lord brings you into the land of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Amorites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites, which he swore to your fathers to give you, a land flowing with milk and honey, you shall keep this service in this month. Seven days you shall eat unleavened bread, and on the seventh day there shall be a feast to the Lord. Unleavened bread shall be eaten for seven days; no leavened bread shall be seen with you, and no leaven shall be seen with you in all your territory. You shall tell your son on that day, ‘It is because of what the Lord did for me when I came out of Egypt.’ And it shall be to you as a sign on your hand and as a memorial between your eyes, that the law of the Lord may be in your mouth. For with a strong hand the Lord has brought you out of Egypt. You shall therefore keep this statute at its appointed time from year to year. (Ex 13:1–10 emphasis added)
The circumcision that counts is circumcision of the heart (cf. Deut 10:16; 30:6; Jer 9:25–26; Rom 2:28–29; Col 2:11) … a Christian needs to understand that this first covenant was modified when Israel ceased being an outwardly circumcised nation but the nation that is circumcised of heart by the soft breath of God. The covenant was modified when disciples as the Body of Christ (1 Cor 12:27) became the temple of the Lord (1 Cor 3:16–17; 2 Cor 6:16), and the sacrificed paschal lamb was represented by broken unleavened bread and the Cup taken on one night a year, the dark portion of the 14th of Abib after the example established by Christ Jesus (Matt 26:26–28). But this first covenant that was made with the fathers of Israel on the day when Israel left Egypt, though growing old and becoming obsolete a quarter century after Calvary (Heb 8:13), remains in effect until blood is again shed by the Lord after the type and example of blood being shed in Egypt when the Lord gave the lives of firstborn Egyptians (and the firstborn of their livestock) as the ransom price for Israel (Isa 43:3–4). And this first covenant requires that those who are of God take the Passover sacraments and keep the seven days of the Feast of Unleavened Bread. The first covenant also requires that the firstborn of Israel be redeemed for they belong to the Lord.
It is the above condition of the covenant found in Exodus 13:1 that is most overlooked by the greater Christian Church: The Lord said to Moses, “Consecrate to me all the firstborn. Whatever is the first to open the womb among the people of Israel, both of man and of beast, is mine.”
Of the firstborns of this world, how many have been consecrated; i.e., dedicated to the Lord? If these firstborns have not been dedicated to the Lord, is the Lord not free to take the lives of these firstborns whenever or however He chooses? He is, isn’t He? And He will take their lives at the Second Passover, the event that ends the first covenant and implements the New Covenant.
Humanity isn’t prepared for the sudden death of 2.4 billion human beings, a third of humankind, all firstborns. When earthquakes or tsunamis take the lives of 200,000 human beings, the resources of this world are taxed in trying to recover bodies, take care of survivors, and repair infrastructures. So what if there were ten thousand times more dead and the catastrophe was worldwide? Infrastructures will not then be destroyed (that comes later), but they will be neglected as thoughts will turn toward God: the focus of humankind will be on trying to get right with God. Nothing else will really matter other than people will want the question answered, Why, when that answer is in how far humankind has gotten from God.
After the Second Passover takes place, the first covenant will have vanished away and Christians will be under the New Covenant, with the Torah written on their hearts and placed in minds. Sin will no longer be the inward or outward transgression of the commandments but simple unbelief of the sort that condemned the nation that left Egypt.
Why would a Christian not walk as Jesus walked; not keep the Passover as Jesus kept the Passover? Christians don’t, but why don’t they?
The Christian Church today, because it errantly believes that it is already under the New Covenant, steadfastly refuses to take the Passover sacraments of bread and wine on the 14th day of Abib, the first month of the year, the month beginning with the first sighted new moon crescent following the vernal equinox. The Christian Church refuses to observe the Feast of Unleavened Bread. In fact, flaunting its lawlessness before God, much of the Christian Church bakes and eats hot cross buns and other raised delicacies as part of its Easter observance. So no one should be surprised when the Lord takes from this world those firstborns that are His. In number, they are enough to pay the ransom price of the Christian Church, and in death, they will be sealed until they are resurrected in the great White Throne Judgment when they will be judged by whether the work of the law has been written on their hearts (Rom 2:14–15). They will not necessarily be lost.
But disciples who are already born of God, with the inner new selves being firstborn sons of God [the firstfruits of this earth], and who do not cover their lawlessness by taking the sacraments of bread and wine on the dark portion of the 14th day of Abib shall see this inner son of God perish at the Second Passover: these disciples will be spiritually lost. They cannot be saved, for they do not today believe God and would not believe God even if they escaped perishing when Israel is liberated from indwelling sins—if they are not physical firstborns, they may escape dying physically but they will be dead spiritually if they are not already dead from the Father having cut them away (John 15:2).
Distilling the above to its essence, at the Second Passover the world changes: natural firstborn human beings will suddenly die, including both the President and Vice-President of the United States if the Second Passover were to occur in 2011. In the Abyss, the “firstborn” or first convert of the Adversary will suddenly be broken, with this firstborn being the first king or first horn of the federated king of Greece. The spiritually lifeless shadow of this sudden breaking of the first king is seen in the death of Alexander the Great … the first or great king of the spiritual king of Greece will be to the four kings or horns that sprout from his stump as Alexander was to the diadochi.
The Second Passover liberation of Israel precedes and is just outside of the 1260 day long ministry of the two witnesses as the sixth Trumpet Plague precedes and is just outside of the 1260 day long Endurance—the Second Passover liberation of Israel precedes and is just outside of the 1260 day long Affliction as the slaughter of human beings at Armageddon precedes and is just outside of the thousand year long “Millennium.” All three of these events (Second Passover, Sixth Trumpet Plague, Armageddon) will see the death of a third part of human beings who are then living. In rough numbers, 2.4 billion will perish at the Second Passover; 1.2 billion will perish in the sixth Trumpet Plague; and 800 million will perish at Armageddon. Certainly the prophet Isaiah saying that the “‘the earth shall be utterly empty and utterly plundered … and few men are left’” (24:3, 6) will prove true.
This cannot be overly emphasized: Human beings are neither physically nor psychologically prepared to address a catastrophe as large as the Second Passover, but unless the first covenant ends through the Lord shedding blood in a manner foreshowed by how He shed blood to initiate the covenant, the New Covenant cannot be implemented. Dispensationalists are wrong in what they teach about dual paths leading to salvation. There is only one path out of Babylon, and that path goes through believing the writings of Moses and by faith keeping the commandments of God.
As the angels in the Abyss are not prepared for the breaking of the first king of the federated king of Greece, humankind on earth is not prepared for what is sure to come … a person would be a fool to say that he or she is eager for the seven endtime years of tribulation to begin. This person truly doesn’t understand how difficult life will become for the Elect, and how impossible life will be for the lawless. And prayers for deliverance will not help for it will be the Father who has delivered the saints into the hand of the Adversary for the destruction of the flesh (see 1 Cor 5:5 for a comparison text). It will be the Father who permits endtime saints to be martyred as their 1st-Century brothers were slain. And it is the justifiable wrath of the Lamb—justified because of how many genuine saints are slain by their rebelling Christian brothers—that causes the remainder of humankind, great and small, to believe that the end of the world is at hand. It will be during the wrath of the Lamb that the infrastructure of this world is destroyed.
Because the Second Passover immediately precedes the time, times, and half a time when the saints are given into the hand of the little horn (Dan 7:25, also Zech 13:7–8), the sprouting of the four horns from around the base of the broken first horn; the emergence of the four beasts or kings from the sea; the removal of the four seals from the Scroll—all describe the same event. The opening of the first four seals occurs within three or four days of the Second Passover liberation of circumcised-of-heart Israel.
The fifth seal is removed when the Rebellion of day 220 occurs; when the great falling away occurs; when the lawless one, the man of perdition, is revealed (2 Thess 2:3):
When he opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain for the word of God and for the witness they had borne. They cried out with a loud voice, “O Sovereign Lord, holy and true, how long before you will judge and avenge our blood on those who dwell on the earth?” Then they were each given a white robe and told to rest a little longer, until the number of their fellow servants and their brothers should be complete, who were to be killed as they themselves had been. (Rev 6:9–11 emphasis added)
There are saints who will be killed as 1st-Century saints were martyred, with a definite number of these martyrdoms known in heaven … from the perspective of the timeless heavenly realm, all activity occurs in the same unchanging moment, with the activity erasing what came before. Thus, the Father and the Son know the end of a matter from its beginning, for both the end and the beginning occur in the same moment regardless of how far the end is from the beginning. Therefore, when Jesus said, “‘I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven’” (Luke 10:18), He speaks of an event two millennia in the future from the perspective of being inside of time [space-time] but an event He witnesses as the glorified Christ. In His mind, the man Jesus had transcended time so that He could speak of a future event as already having happened. And the prophet Ezekiel addresses a similar scenario when he records the Lord’s words to Satan:
Your heart was proud because of your beauty;
you corrupted your wisdom for the sake of your splendor.
I cast you to the ground;
I exposed you before kings
to feast their eyes on you.
By the multitude of your iniquities,
in the unrighteousness of your trade
you profaned your sanctuaries;
so I brought fire out from your midst;
it consumed you
and I turned you to ashes on the earth
in the sight of all who saw you.
All who know you among the peoples
are appalled at you;
you have come to a dreadful end
and shall be no more forever. (28:17–19 emphasis added)
This anointed cherub will not come to an end until after the thousand years of the Millennium, but from the perspective of the Most High, the event has already occurred just as the saints have already been glorified: “For those whom he [God] foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified. (Rom 8:29–30 emphasis added) … from the perspective of being within time, the saints are not yet glorified, but from the perspective of the Lord, those who will be glorified have already been glorified.
In the same way, saints who are slated to be martyred are known to the Father even though they, themselves, do not yet know that they will be martyred.
If only a few saints were slated to be martyred when the fifth seal is removed, the wrath of the Lamb would be tempered by the smallness of their number. Conversely, if many saints are slated for martyrdom, the wrath of the Lamb will be great; for disciples are not to avenge their own but will be avenged by the Father and the Son.
How much time lapses between when the fifth seal is opened and when the sixth seal is opened can be reasonably determined by counting backwards from the doubled day 1260 of our hypothetical timeline:
· If Satan and his angels are cast from heaven on Halloween, 2014, they are cast out on Julian day #2456961.5; they are cast out on the second half of the doubled day 1260, hence on 56961 instead of on 56960 [modified Julian day].
· One long spiritual night began at Calvary, with the midnight hour of this night coming when humankind can get no farther from God;
· The death angel[s] will pass over the earth at the midnight hour of this long spiritual night;
· The death angel will slay uncovered firstborns; this will be the Second Passover slaughter that ends the first covenant;
· There will still be six hours of darkness before dawn comes with the giving of the kingdom of this world to the Son of Man; each of these six hours represents seven months.
· The hour of trial from which Philadelphia is kept represents both the first and second of the three woes; this hour is seven months or 210 days long.
If a person subtracts 210 days from Julian day #2456961.5, the person arrives at o4 April 2014, a Friday—Nissan 4 on rabbinical Judaism’s calendar—as the date for when the fifth angel blows his trumpet if the Second Passover occurs in 2011. This date is accurate within four days; typologically, the fifth angel blows his trumpet on Nissan 1, the beginning of the year, meaning that there are four days (three and a half days) after the death of a third of humanity in the sixth Trumpet Plague and when Satan is cast from heaven.
If a symbolical hour is seven months long, then a half hour is three and a half months or 105 days long: subtracting 315 (210 + 105) days from Julian day #2456961.5, a person arrives at 20 December 2013, or the December solstice. John records, “When the Lamb opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour” (Rev 8:1) … about half an hour isn’t a precise enough expression that events can be assigned to a certain day within an example timeline; so it is reasonable to say that within our example timeline, the Lamb opens the seventh seal about the December solstice in 2013.
If the Second Passover occurs on the second Passover in 2011, Julian day #2455700.5, then the Rebellion or great falling away (2 Thess 2:3) will occur on Julian day #2455920.5, December 25th, Christmas, 2011. The fifth seal will be opened on Christmas 2011 in our example timeline and the seventh seal will be opened at the December solstice in 2013. So if the opening of the sixth seal begins the great day of the wrath of the Lamb, with a “great day” suggesting a time frame of a year, the sixth seal will be opened on or about the December solstice 2012.
The December solstice of 2012 has an immense amount of cultural baggage attached to it. This is when the Mayan long count calendar indicates that the end of the world is at hand; when the count of days begins again, if it begins again.
More modern experts have reassured Western culture that nothing will happen on the December solstice 2012 than have frightened people with a doomsday scenario; yet the totality of Scripture supports cataclysmic events that not only reshape the surface of the earth but will see the death of most of humankind.
What John the Revelator records about the sun turning black and the full moon becoming like blood (in December 2012, the first quarter occurs on the 20th, and the full moon on 28th) and the stars of the sky falling like fruit shed in a gale; about the sky vanishing like a scrolled being rolled up and about every mountain and island being removed from its place is written in metaphorical language. The “literalness” of what’s described can be questioned, but not that the wrath of the Lamb will occur, with vengeance being taken on small and great for the martyrdom of the saints and for the rebellion of Christians.
As humans are more ‘fluid” than usually perceived, the earth is more fluid than is usually considered: if the planet has a molten core and three-fourths of its surface covered by water and is surrounded by an atmospheric sea of gas molecules, exactly how much solidity actually exists? It would not be difficult for the Lamb to cause mountains and islands to move, but to what purpose would mountains move? … The distribution of land masses on the surface of the earth maintains rotational stability; so if mountains and islands were moved from their present locations, the earth would wobble in orbit as if it were a drunken man staggering about.
Most biblical scholars and Christian theologians do not find scriptural support for a second Passover liberation of Israel, now a nation circumcised of heart, but their inability to find this liberation from sin and death comes from their assumption that Christians are already under the New Covenant. This assumption will be proved false in a year near to the present time. If that year is 2011—it will be a year like 2011—the doomsday scenarios for what will happen beginning on the December solstice 2012 have scriptural support in a mimetic reading of what happens when the sixth seal is opened. If that year is another year, then the December 2012 solstice will pass as most experts expect the solstice to be just one of many solstices; for on the winter solstice the sun always has a declination of minus 23.5 degrees and a right ascension of 18 hours, with its relative position to distant stars slowly shifting due to the precession of equinoxes, moving 0.01 degree per year. With the plane of the Milky Way 10–12 degrees in width, the December solstice is in the plane of the Milky Way for about a thousand years. But in crossing the plane of the Milky Way, the solstice will be in the jaws of the crocodile in 2012; it will be there for the earth to be devoured because the earth has slain too many sons of God in the preceding year.
The irony of a potential doomsday scenario occurring beginning with the December solstice of 2012 is that the death of those who will be killed [martyred] when the fifth seal is opened has been known to God since the foundations of the earth were laid, with the endtime wrath of the Lamb ordained from the beginning—if 2011 is the year of the Second Passover.
"Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version, copyright ©2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.