Revelation 9:1-12 Part 2


1)    Then the fifth messenger trumpeted, and I saw a star having fallen from the heaven into the land, and the key of the shaft of the abyss was given to it.

2)    And the shaft of the abyss was opened, and smoke as smoke from a great furnace arose out of the shaft, and the sun and the atmosphere was darkened by the smoke from the shaft.

3)    Then locusts came forth into the land from the smoke; and power was given to them the same as the capabilities the scorpions of the land have.

4)    And it was said to them that they should do no harm to the grass of the land nor any green plant nor any tree, but only the men having no seal of God on their foreheads.

5)    And it was given to them that they not kill them but that they should be tormented five months, and their torment as the scorpion torments when it has stung a man.

6)    Then the men will seek the death in these days and will not find it; they will long to die, but the death flees from them.

7)    The appearances of the locusts like horses having been made ready into battle; upon their heads as crowns like gold; their faces as men’s faces;

8)    they had hair as women’s hair; their teeth were as lions’;

9)    they had breastplates as iron breastplates; the sound of their wings as chariot sound from many horses running into battle;

10) they have tails and stings like scorpions, their ability to harm the men five months in their tails.

11) For their ruler they have the messenger of the abyss, the Hebrew name: Abaddon, the Hellenic name being Apollyon.

12) The one woe did go forth.  Lo!  It comes yet two woes after this.

13) Then the sixth messenger trumpeted.  Then I heard one voice from the four corners of the altar of gold before God

14) saying to the sixth messenger having the trumpet, ‘loose the four messengers having been bound at the great river Euphrates’.

15) And the four messengers having been made ready into the hour and the day and the month and the year were loosed in order that they might kill the third of the men.

16) The number of the armies of horses: two myriads of myriads.  I heard their number.

17) And thus I saw in the appearance of the horses, and those who sit on them, having breastplates of fire and hyacinth and brimstone, the heads of the horses as lions’ heads, and fire and smoke and sulphur went forth out of their mouths.

18) From these three plagues, the fire and the smoke and the sulphur going forth from their mouths, the third of the men were killed,

19) for the ability of the horses is in their mouths; and in their tails, their tails like serpents having heads, they do harm.

20) And the rest of the men, those not killed in these plagues, neither repented of the works of their hands that they should not worship devils and idols of gold and silver and brass and stone and wood (which neither can see nor hear nor walk),

21) nor did they repent of their murders nor of their sorceries nor of their fornications nor of their thefts.



As we began this chapter, last Lord’s Day, we quoted our Lord from the Gospel of Luke chapter ten, as He had sent out seventy other disciples to find some of the lost sheep of the house of Israel.

Here is part of that reading:


18) And he said unto them, ‘I beheld Satan having fallen as a flashing from the heaven.

19) Lo, I have given you authority to tread upon serpents and scorpions and over all the power of the enemy.  And nothing shall in any wise hurt you.


He had sent them out in an already – and increasingly – demon-infested nation, one already beginning to experience the “woes” of the last days.  He had sent them with His authority and with His Words to the Father’s elect of the twelve tribes.

And by the authority of God the Son (the evil things being mentioned here in our text as well), the snakes and scorpions already infesting Israel could not harm them.  And that’s the decree that John sees in the heaven and writes to the Churches.

John begins this portion of his letter with the sounding of the fifth trumpeter; and the messenger having trumpeted, John sees a star “having fallen” into the land – the four corners of God’s heaven-and-earth-Israel.  And it’s obvious from the text of Luke chapter ten that it is the same that Jesus had already seen:  Satan having already fallen into the land as a “flashing” from the heaven.

It was also said last Lord’s Day, from the text here in the first verse, that the risen and ascended Christ has been given all authority in the heavens and on the earth, and that He is Commander In Chief of all the creatures in all His creation.

We’ve already seen the plagues and pestilence and misery brought on the land by the first four trumpeters.  And the fifth, sixth and seventh trumpeters (which are the voice of God) call forth the three “woes” mentioned previously… a perfect “three”, and all prophesied in Ezekiel.

And the first “woe” (trumpeter number five) has the “star” having fallen into the land (identified as Satan by our Lord), (the first woe has the star) authorized to open the shaft of the abyss.  Obviously this is another intensification of the plagues and pestilences prophesied by the prophets, as the key to the shaft is “given” to this creature.

It is also obvious that the One Who gives it to the creature is the One Who has all authority in the heavens and upon the earth.  Listen to it.  This is at verse ten of the opening chapter of John’s Revelation:


10) I came to be in spirit in the Lord’s Day, and I heard a great voice as a trumpet behind me

11) saying, “Write what you see in a scroll and send to the seven Churches, into Ephesus and into Smyrna and into Pergamum and into Thyatira and into Sardis and into Philadelphia and into Laodicea.”

12) And I turned around to see the voice that was speaking with me; and when I turned I saw seven golden lampstands,

13) and in midst of the lampstands like a Son of Man, having been clothed upon to the feet and having been wrapped at the chest with a golden girdle:

14) His head and hair white as wool, white as snow, and His eyes as flaming fire,

15) and His feet like burnished brass as in having been fired in a furnace, and His voice as a sound of many waters,

16) and having seven stars in His right hand, and a sharp two-edged sword proceeding out of His mouth, and His face as the sun shines in its power.

17) And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as dead; and He placed His     right hand on me saying “Fear not.  I Am the First and the Last

18) and the Living, and I became dead and LO, I Am living into the ages of the ages, and I have the keys of death and hades.”


When I was sitting on the side of a steep hill on the island of Patmos, overlooking the island and the harbor, these are the very words that kept running through my memory as John describes the appearance of God the Son in all His glory as He appeared to John in that place.

The Word of God has come into His power; and He says to John (chapter one verse eighteen) that He alone is the Owner of the keys.  And when it is proper to His providential purpose, He conveys that ownership and power to another, or others; and He “assigns” to them a purpose.

That was the case when He conveyed the keys to the Kingdom to His apostles, whose doctrine is the very Word of the Christ and is the foundation of the new temple of Holy Spirit, the Rock being the plumb cornerstone, and His elect being the white stones in its structure!  Rock solid apostolic doctrine is the Word of the Christ and the sure foundation of His Church – the “keys to the Kingdom”.

And that is also the case as He conveys the key to the shaft of the abyss to the “star” having fallen.  It’s name is Satanos according to our Lord, known by another name in Hebrew and still another in Hellenic mythology.  And in the conveyance of this power, our Lord assigns this creature a purpose.

It is not to “speak”; our Lord doesn’t give it words to say.  Its purpose is limited here in the “last days” … it is to open the shaft of the abyss.  We’ll see the reason for that in a little while.

But first we need to do what we can with regard to the abyss itself.

And please remember once again that all these things are what is covenantally decreed by God.  They are what He has spoken into being; and John is seeing and hearing the Lord’s providential rule and authority over all that belongs to Him. 

And how He sees it is where we must begin.  All truth lies in the One Who IS Truth.  Wisdom begins with Wisdom personified.  Reason starts with O Logos, the Word.  If observation, thought and reasoning begin with something other than the Word of the Christ, then faith is abandoned.

If one’s starting point is not the Word of The Christ, then he is altogether intellectually, spiritually, presuppositionally, covenantally, epistemologically incapacitated!  And all his thought processes are faith-less!

First this morning, let’s continue to establish Jesus’ authority over all the creatures in His creation, and over all the “locations” in His creation.  And of all the texts of Scripture that speak to that authority, we need go only to the encounters that Jesus had with demons (demonic creatures) that are written for us in the Gospels.  These are numerous.

These are all well-known, and should we read them all (which we’re not going to do here), we would see first that they all knew Him!  All the demon-creatures knew Him. They didn’t just recognize Him; they hadn’t just “heard of” Him; they hadn’t just been apprised of His existence…  but they “knew” Him.

And they knew Him because He is their Creator!


“In the beginning was The Word.  And the Word was with God; and the Word Was God.  And without Him nothing was made that was made (John chapter one).


The Word of God called everything that was into being … including all the creatures.  These creatures were in the heaven; they were those of God’s Glory Cloud; they were His “messengers” doing that which was spoken from His mouth.  So these devilish creatures that Jesus encountered in Israel, which had possessed His Father’s elect from the tribes of Jacob, knew Him… for they had personally served Him in the heaven.

The next thing is that they “believed” Him.  So, not only did they “know” Him at every encounter written for us in the Gospels, but they believed Him.  Having been created by Him; and having served Him in the heaven, they knew and believed He was God the Son… O Logos – Word of God.

So too, we see that they all “feared” Him.  In every case in which there is interaction between Jesus and these fallen creatures, they are frightened of His divine Authority.  And they were frightened as to what He would do to them.

And lastly, not only did they know Him and believe Him and were fearful of Him, but they “obeyed” Him.  Even those that were the most evil among them did what they were told.  And in at least one encounter these evil creatures “prayed” that Jesus not send them back into the abyss.  And on another occasion they begged that they not be sent into the “deep”.

The deep, of course, is the abyss, also translated “the pit” in some portions of the older Scripture.  And Jesus, the Christ of God, has the keys to the Kingdom and the key to the abyss and the key to “the death” (as He told John in Revelation chapter one).

This bottomless pit called the abyss is revealed by God seven times in the Revelation, written down by John.  Three times here in chapter nine, once in chapter eleven, once in chapter seventeen, and twice in chapter twenty.

As God called His creation into existence, knows and observes it, and reveals it in His older prophetic Word, the abyss is the farthest extreme of all He has made.  He uses the word as a reference to the deepest parts of the sea, and to the subterranean vaults of water from whence came the flood.

The Red Sea crossing of His rescued covenant people in Egypt is repeatedly likened to a passage through the abyss (having some substantial theological significance from God’s perspective).

  And Ezekiel, in chapter twenty-six, threatened the city of Tyre with a great desolation in which God would bring up the abyss and bring down all its people to the lower parts of the earth.  And yet, Jesus, in the Luke chapter ten passage that we read, says that it will be more tolerable for Tyre in the judgment than it will be for the cities of Israel.

Jonah spoke of the abyss in terms of excommunication from the Presence of God (Jonah chapter two) (the loss of the Presence and grace of God is truly an “abysmal” existence).  Job reveals the abyss as the domain of the dragon (Job 41), and that’s what John writes, as well, in chapters eleven and seventeen.

John, in chapter twenty of this letter, describes the abyss as the prison of the demons, as does Gospel writer Luke (chapter eight), as well as the apostle Peter in the second chapter of his second letter to the refugees from Israel in the nations.

The apostle Paul calls the abyss the “realm of the dead” in Romans ten.

So what are we to say regarding God’s perception of His Own creation decree and what is about to transpire, as John receives that Revelation?

John is revealing to the Churches that “hell” is about to break loose in the land.  The shaft of the abyss is to be opened for a period of time as God the Son provides Satan with the key to that shaft.  And Israel is to be inundated from the “deep” with evil creatures, all of which obey the Commander In Chief as to what they are to do and what they are not to do!

“That is the way it will be”, Jesus said, as written by Matthew in chapter twelve of His Gospel, “(that is the way it will be) in this generation”!

It’s what Jesus prophesied for three years before His crucifixion and resurrection.  The Land of Israel that had received the Word of His Coming, and had even been a living prophecy of God’s Messiah, had never believed Him but had established its own religion, and was about to be glutted – flooded – with demon-creatures from the pit, from the deep, from “the abyss”.

Apostate Israel is about to be cast out of God’s Presence – excommunicated – and filled with demon-creatures.

Because of Israel’s rejection of the King of Kings all through its entire existence, all the blessings that it had received through His longsuffering with its abominable idolatry, would now turn into curses.

Jerusalem and all Israel had been “swept clean” of the demon-creatures all through the three-year manifestation of the Christ of God.  But now they would return “seven-fold” to inundate all of Israel; and the entire nation would be a “dwelling-place” for every unclean creature (Revelation 18, verse two).

And now Israel would be the “unrestricted” dwelling place for these creatures, while in all “the nations” (the Gentile nations) the evil creatures would be “restricted”.  In other words, they would no longer have “free reign” in the nations, and the Word of the Christ would take from them all that belongs to Him!

This entire generation (Jesus’ words) became increasingly demon-possessed; their progressive national insanity being apparent as one reads through the newer Scripture – all prophesied in the older; the horrifying final stages of covenantal judgment being proclaimed in the pages of John’s letter to the Churches as he urges steadfastness and faithfulness from the Lord’s elect in the light of the Parousia of Jesus Christ.

Now.  As we consider what we see in verse two and beyond, it’s necessary for us to read where this covenant was cut.  Please listen carefully as I read the passage from Genesis fifteen.  You can hear the same sights and sounds and terminologies that John sees and hears here in our text.  Here it is:


5)    And He brought him forth abroad, and said, ‘Look now toward heaven, and number the stars, should you be able to number them. Then He said unto him, ‘So shall your seed be.’

6)    And he believed Yahveh; and Yahveh reckoned it to him for righteousness.

7)    Then He said unto him, ‘I am Yahveh Who brought you out of Ur of the Chaldees, to give you this land to inherit it.’

8)    And he said, ‘O Lord Yahveh, whereby shall I know that I shall inherit it?’

9)    And He said unto him, ‘Take me a heifer three years old, and a she-goat three years old, and a ram three years old, and a turtle-dove, and a young pigeon.’

10) And he took Him all these, and divided them in the midst, and laid each half over against the other: but the birds he did not divide.

11) And the birds of prey came down upon the carcasses, and Abram drove them away.

12) And when the sun was going down, a deep sleep fell upon Abram; and, lo, a horror of great darkness fell upon him.

13) And He said unto Abram, ‘Know of a surety that your seed shall be sojourners in a land that is not theirs, and shall serve them; and they shall afflict them four hundred years;

14) and also that nation who they shall serve, I will judge: and afterward shall they come out with great substance.

15) But you shall go to your fathers in peace; you shall be buried in a good old age.

16) Then in the fourth generation they shall come hither again; for the iniquity of the Amorite (Canaanite) is not yet full.’

17) And it came to pass that, when the sun went down and it was dark, Lo, smoke as from a smoking furnace and a flaming torch having passed between these pieces.

18) In that day Yahveh cut a covenant with Abram, saying, ‘Unto your seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates….’


Now, this is that part of the covenant revealed to Abram concerning the land of Israel, defined as being between the river of Egypt and “the great river Euphrates” (which you see in our Revelation passage). And the covenant (a covenant of life or death) is “ratified” to Abram in a heavily “darkened” state as smoke from a great furnace appears to him, and then fire appearing as a flaming torch and having passed between the pieces of “three” animals that were divided!

We certainly don’t have time for a full-orbed, whole-Bible analysis of the cutting of God’s covenant with Abram.  But you most assuredly can hear that this passage in the Revelation is a passage having to do with that covenant specifically!

And here’s another:


10) And Yahveh said unto Moses, ‘Go unto the people, and sanctify them today and tomorrow, and let them wash their garments,

11) and be ready against the third day; for the third day Yahveh will come down in the sight of all the people upon mount Sinai.

12) And you shall set bounds unto the people round about, saying, ‘Take heed to yourselves, that you go not up into the mount, or touch the border of it: whosoever touches the mount shall be surely put to death:

13) no hand shall touch him, but he shall surely be stoned, or shot through; whether it be beast or man, he shall not live.  When the trumpet sounds long, they shall come up to the mount.’

14) And Moses went down from the mount unto the people, and sanctified the people; and they washed their garments.

15) And he said unto the people, ‘Be ready against the third day: come not nigh unto a woman.’

16) And it came to pass on the third day, when it was morning, that there were thunders and lightnings, and a thick cloud upon the mount, and the voice of a trumpet exceeding loud; and all the people that were in the camp trembled.

17) And Moses brought forth the people out of the camp to meet God; and they stood at the nether part of the mount.

18) And mount Sinai, the whole of it, smoked, because Yahveh descended upon it in fire; and the smoke thereof ascended as the smoke of a furnace, and the whole mount quaked greatly.

19) And when the voice of the trumpet waxed louder and louder, Moses spoke, and God answered him by voice.


This is the scene in which Yahveh appears in order to cut a covenant with Israel.  And all the same sights and sounds and language that Moses writes, as revealed by Yahveh, also appears in this text of the Revelation.  Yahveh cut the covenant (a covenant of life and death) with Israel at Sinai (same as before with Abram).  And now, in the Revelation, the same covenantal language is used as those covenantal sanctions are brought to bear on apostate Israel.

Then the gross darkness and the smoke of the furnace and the fire of the wrath of Yahveh is directly prophesied against Israel by the prophet Ezekiel in chapter twenty-two.  Hear the same covenant language here as we’ve just heard in Genesis and in Deuteronomy, and that we also see here in the Revelation.  This is the life and death covenant revealed in the Garden of Eden; the same one revealed to Abram; the same revealed at Sinai; and it is the life and death covenant finally brought against Israel by the Executor of the Covenant at His Parousia.  So listen carefully as God reveals it all to Israel through the prophet:


1)    Moreover the word of Yahveh came unto me saying,

2)    And you, son of man, will you judge, will you judge the bloody city?  Then cause her to know all her abominations.

3)    And you shall say, Thus saith the Lord Yahveh:  A city that sheds blood in the midst of her so that her time has come, and that makes idols for herself so as to defile her!

4)    You are guilty of the blood that you have shed, and are defiled by the idols which you have made; and you have caused your days to draw near, and are come even unto your years: therefore have I made you a disgrace unto the nations, and a mockery to all the countries.

5)    Those that are near, and those that are far from you shall mock you, you infamous one full of turmoil.

6)    Behold, the princes of Israel, every one according to his power, have shed blood in you.

7)    In you father and mother have been treated with contempt; in the midst of you they have exploited the sojourner; in you have they oppressed the fatherless and the widow.

8)    You despise my holy things, and you have profaned my sabbaths.

9)    Slanderous men have been in you to shed blood; and in you there are those who have eaten upon the mountain (shrines): in the midst of you they have committed lewdness.

10) In you have they uncovered their fathers' nakedness (i.e. committed incest); in you have they violated her that was unclean in her impurity.

11) And one commits an abomination with his neighbor's wife; while another lewdly defiles his daughter-in-law; and yet another in you has violated his sister, his father's daughter.

12) Those in you have taken bribes to shed blood; you have taken interest and increase, and you have greedily extorted your neighbors by oppression, and you have forgotten me, says the Lord Yahveh.

13) Behold, therefore I have smitten my hand at your dishonest gain which you have made, and at the blood shed in your midst.

14) Can your courage endure, or can your hands be strong, in the days that I shall deal with you? I, Yahveh, have spoken it, and will do it.

15) And I will scatter you among the nations, and disperse you through the countries; and I will purge your filthiness out of you.

16) And you shall be profaned in yourself in the sight of the nations; and you shall know that I am Yahveh.

17) And the word of Yahveh came unto me, saying,

18) Son of man, the house of Israel is become dross unto me (i.e. dregs, debris): all of them are copper and tin and iron and lead, inside of the furnace; they are the dross of silver.

19) Therefore thus says the Lord Yahveh:  Because you are all become dross, therefore behold, I will gather you into the midst of Jerusalem.

20) Just as silver and brass and iron and lead and tin are gathered into the midst of the furnace, to blow the fire upon it and melt it, so will I gather you in my anger and in my wrath, and I will put you inside and melt you.

21) Yea, I will gather you, and blow upon you with the fire of my wrath, and you shall be melted in the midst thereof.

22) As silver is melted inside the furnace, so shall you be melted inside the city; and then you shall know that I, Yahveh, have poured out my wrath upon you.’


Then, lastly, the passage that connects all of this together is found in Malachi chapter four.  It connects all of the covenant passages and the prophetic word with what the Lord Jesus said in Luke chapter ten.

That’s where He said that His disciples, while finding the lost sheep of the house of Israel, would walk on snakes and scorpions without harm.  For before the furnace of the wrath of God came upon them, every last one of His people would be rescued.

Here’s the Malachi passage:


1)    For, behold, the day is coming burning as a furnace; and all the arrogant, and all that commit wickedness, shall be debris; and the day that comes shall burn them up, says Yahveh of Hosts, leaving them neither root nor branch.

2)    But for you who fear my name shall the sun of righteousness arise with healing in its wings; and you shall go forth and playfully jump as calves from the stall.

3)    And you shall trample the wicked; for they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet in the day that I am preparing, says Yahveh of hosts.


In our passage, the smoke – as the smoke of a furnace – darkened all the land.  And from the smoke of the covenantal furnace of Yahveh came evil creatures under the command of the King of Kings.

And even what they yet had was being reduced to waste and ashes and rubble.

Just a minute or two here at the end regarding the “national insanity” setting in in all of Israel.  I mentioned it before as I was speaking of epistemological incapacitation.

Our Lord Jesus Christ is O Logos, the Word of God.  And He so aptly said that He IS Truth.  And He is Wisdom personified.  All Truth, all Wisdom is His.  And in order to have wisdom and knowledge and truth, man is to reason – first – from His Word.  That’s the starting point if we are to be wise and truthful and have knowledge.

But if man begins elsewhere (such as in some other “source” of knowledge or wisdom – such as the wisdom of this world, or in vain philosophies, or in false religions), then he is inabled, or invalidated, or incapacitated.  And all his cognitive activities have no meaning.

In order to think, in order to reason, in order to have wisdom, one must begin with the Word of the Christ.  That’s the starting point.

So the point can be made, without question, that to begin at some other starting point is invalid – and insane.

For fifteen hundred years national Israel had been “doing wisdom” from some other starting point… until God gave them up to their own insanity.  And in our text they are about to be flooded with the foulest of demon-creatures from the pit of hell.  Their insanity will then take on a new level.  We’ll see that next.

But the apostle Paul said, “let this mind be in you….”  He means the mind of the Christ.  In other words, one must repent and faith in the Christ.  And then begin all of his thought processes with His Word.  There is Wisdom; there is Truth.  And there, therefore, is sanity.  Anything else is insane, for it is incapacitating and self-destructive.  And it will end you up in the furnace of the covenant.