Revelation 9

<< Revelation 9 >>

1. And the fifth angel sounded, and I saw a star fall from heaven unto the earth, and to him was given the key of the pit of the abyss. 2. And he opened the pit of the abyss; and there went up a smoke out of the pit of the abyss, as the smoke of a great furnace: and the sun and the air were darkened from the smoke of the pit. 3. And out of the smoke there went forth locusts upon the earth; and unto them was given power, as the scorpions of the earth have power. 4. And it was said to them that they should not hurt the grass of the earth, nor any green thing, nor any tree; but only the men who had not the seal of God in their foreheads. 5. And it was given to them that they should not kill them, but that they should torment them five months: and their torment was as the torment of a scorpion when it striketh a man.

6 And in those days shall men seek death, and shall not find it; and shall desire to die, and death shall flee from them. 7. And the likenesses of the locusts were like unto horses prepared for war; and upon their heads as it were crowns like gold, and their faces were as the faces of men. 8. And they had hair as the hair of women, and their teeth were as those of lions. 9. And they had breastplates, as breastplates of iron; and the voice of their wings was as the voice of chariots of many horses running to war. 10. And they had tails like unto scorpions; and there were stings in their tails: and their power was to hurt men five months.

7 And they had a king over them, the angel of the abyss, whose name in the Hebrew is Abaddon, and in the Greek he hath the name Apollyon. 12. One woe is past; behold, there come two woes more hereafter. 13. And the sixth angel sounded, and I heard a voice from the four horns of the golden altar that is before God. 14. Saying to the sixth angel who had the trumpet, Loose the four angels that are bound at the great river Euphrates. 15. And the four angels were loosed; who were prepared for an hour, and a day, and a month, and a year, to kill a third part of men.

8 And the number of the armies of horsemen was two myriads of myriads: and I heard the number of them. 17. And thus I saw the horses in the vision, and them that sat upon them, having breastplates of fire, and jacinth, and brimstone; and the heads of the horses were as the heads of lions; and out of their mouths issued fire, and smoke, and brimstone. 18. By these three was a third part of men killed, by the fire, and by the smoke, and by the brimstone, that issued out of their mouths. 19. And their power was in their mouth; for their tails were like unto serpents, having heads, and with them they hurt. 20. And the rest of the men who were not killed by these plagues, yet repented not of the works of their hands, that they should not adore demons, and idols of gold, and silver, and brass, and stone, and wood; which neither can see, nor hear, nor walk: 21. Neither repented they of their murders, nor of their enchantments, nor of their whoredoms, nor of their thefts.

Of the exploration and manifestation of the states of life of those in the church of the Reformed, who are called learned and wise from the confirmation of faith separated from charity, and of justification and salvation by it alone (these are treated of from verses 1-12). Of the exploration and manifestation of those therein, who are not so learned and wise, and are in faith alone, and who live as they please (from verses 13-19). Lastly, of those therein, who know nothing but that faith is the all by which man is saved, and not anything besides (verses 20-21). The contents of each verse

Spiritual Correspondences

Verse 1. “The fifth angel sounded,”

The exploration and manifestation of the states of life of those in the church of the Reformed, who are called learned and wise from the confirmation of faith separated from charity, and of justification and salvation by it alone.

“And I saw a star fall from heaven unto the earth,”

Spiritual Divine truth flowing from heaven into the church with them and exploring and manifesting.

“And to him was given the key of the pit of the abyss,”

The opening of their hell.

Verse 2. “And he opened the pit of the abyss, and there went up a smoke out of the pit, as the smoke of a great furnace,”

The falsities of the concupiscences of the natural man springing forth from their evil loves.

“And the sun and the air were darkened from the smoke of the pit,”

Thence the light of truth became thick darkness.

Verse 3. “And there went forth out of the smoke locusts upon the earth,”

From them were falsities to the lowest things, such as are with those who have become sensual, and see and judge of all things from the senses and their fallacies.

“And unto them was given power, as the scorpions of the earth have power,”

The power of persuading that their falsities are truths.

Verse 4. “And it was said to them that they should not hurt the grass of the earth, nor any green thing, nor any tree; but only the men who had not the seal of God in their foreheads,”

The Divine providence of the Lord, that they should not be able to take away any truth and good of faith, nor any affection and perception of them, from any others than such as are not in charity and thence not in faith.

Verse 5. “And it was given to them that they should not kill them, but that they should torment them five months,”

Neither from these should they be able to take away the faculty of understanding and willing truth and good, but that they should only be able to bring on stupor for a short time.

“And their torment was as the torment of a scorpion when it striketh a man,”

This is from their persuasive power.

Verse 6. “And in those days shall men seek death, and shall not find it; and shall desire to die, and death shall flee from them,”

They wish that in matters of faith the understanding should be shut up and the will closed, by which means spiritual light and life are extinguished, and that yet this cannot be done.

Verse 7. “And the likenesses of the locusts,”

The appearances and images of those who have confirmed in themselves faith separated from charity.

“Were like unto horses prepared for war,”

Because they can reason, they appear to themselves as if they were combating from the understanding of truth from the Word.

“And upon their heads as it were crowns like gold,”

They appeared to themselves as if they were conquerors (n. 432). “And their faces were as the faces of men,” signifies that they appeared to themselves as if they were wise.

Verse 8. “And they had hair as the hair of women,”

They appeared to themselves as if they were in the affection of truth.

“And their teeth were as the teeth of lions,”

Sensual things, which are the ultimates of the life of the natural man, appeared with them to have power over all things.

Verse 9. “And they had breastplates, as it were breastplates of iron,”

Arguments from fallacies, by which they fight and prevail, appeared to them so powerful that they could not be refuted.

“And the voice of their wings was as the voice of chariots of many horses running to war,”

Their reasonings as if they were from the truths of doctrine from the Word fully understood, for which they must ardently fight.

Verse 10. “And they had tails like unto scorpions,”

The truths of the Word falsified, by which they induce stupor.

“And there were stings in their tails, and their power was to hurt men five months,”

Subtle falsifications of the Word, by which for a short time they darken and fascinate the understanding, and thus deceive and captivate.

Verse 11. “And they had a king over them, the angel of the abyss, whose name in the Hebrew is Abaddon, and in the Greek he hath the name Apollyon,”

They are in the satanic hell who are in falsities from lusts, and by the total falsification of the Word they have destroyed the church.

Verse 12. “One woe is past; behold, there come two woes more hereafter,”

Still further lamentations over the state of the church.

Verse 13. “And the sixth angel sounded,”

The exploration and manifestation of their state of life in the church of the Reformed who are not so wise, and yet place the all of religion in faith, and think of it alone, and live as they please.

“And I heard a voice from the four horns of the golden altar that is before God, saying to the sixth angel who had the trumpet”

A command from the Lord out of the spiritual heaven to those who were to explore and make manifest.

Verse 14. “Loose the four angels that are bound at the great river Euphrates,”

External bonds should be taken away from them, that the interiors of their minds might appear.

Verse 15. “And the four angels were loosed,”

When external bonds were taken away, the interiors of their minds appeared.

“Who were prepared for an hour, and a day, and a month, and a year, to kill a third part of men,”

They were perpetually in the effort to take away spiritual light and life from the men of the church.

Verse 16. “And the number of the armies of horsemen was two myriads of myriads,”

Reasoning concerning faith alone, with which the interiors of their minds were filled up, from the great abundance of the mere falsities of evil.

Verse 17. “And thus I saw the horses in the vision, and them that sat on them,”

It was then discovered that the reasonings of the interiors of their minds concerning faith alone were imaginary and visionary, and that they themselves were insane with them.

“And I heard the number of them,”

The quality of them was perceived.

“Having breastplates of fire, and jacinth, and brimstone,”

Their imaginary and visionary arguments from infernal love and their own intelligence, and from the lusts thence.

“And the heads of the horses were as the heads of lions,”

Fantasies concerning faith alone as if it were in power.

“And out of their mouths issued fire, and smoke, and brimstone,”

In their thoughts and discourses, viewed interiorly, there is nothing, and from them there proceeds nothing, but the love of self and of the world, and the pride of their own intelligence, and the lusts of evil and falsity from these two.

Verse 18. “By these three was the third part of men killed, by the fire, and by the smoke, and by the brimstone, which issued out of their mouths,”

From these it is that the men of the church perish.

Verse 19. “And their power was in their mouth,”

They prevail only by their discourse in confirmation of faith.

“For their tails were like unto serpents, having heads, and with them they do hurt,”

The reason, because they are sensual and inverted, speaking truths with their lips, but falsifying them by the principle which constitutes the head of their religion, and thus they deceive.

Verse 20. “And the rest of the men who were not killed by these plagues,”

Those in the church of the Reformed who are not so spiritually dead from visionary reasonings, and from the love of self, the pride of their own intelligence, and from lusts, thence as those before mentioned, and yet make faith alone the head of their religion.

“Yet repented not of the works of their hands,”

Neither did they shun the things that are of their proprium, which are evils of every kind, as sins (n. 457). “That they should not adore demons,” signifies that thus they are in the evils of their concupiscences, and make one with their like in hell.

“And idols of gold, and silver, and brass, and stone, and wood,”

Thus they are in worship from mere falsities.

“Which neither can see, nor hear, nor walk,”

In which there is nothing of spiritual and truly rational life.

Verse 21. “Neither repented they of their murders, nor of their enchantments, nor of their whoredoms, nor of their thefts,”

The heresy of faith alone induces on their hearts stupidity, tergiversation, and hardness, so that they do not think anything of the precepts of the Decalogue, nor indeed of any sin that it ought to be shunned because it is in favor of the devil and against God.

Author: Emanuel Swedenborg (Apocalypse Revealed)