Sandra declared, "I can't believe that a loving God would pour out the destruction and wrath on man, described in the book of Revelation. It sounds to me like an example of the church promoting the concept of an angry, punishing God, to keep people in line. The events of Revelation contradict my belief in a loving God who created and loves all men. Surely, God will never pour out wrath on man."
Many struggle to reconcile the judgments and wrath described in Revelation, with the distorted belief that man somehow deserves God's love. They often confuse God's love and mercy with sin-tolerance or even an approval of evil, reasoning that God would prevent sin, if it were really evil. The opening of the seven seals are the beginning of the removal of God's protection from mankind. Even though the seven seal judgements seem devastating, they are mild compared to later judgements, and actually evidence God's continued grace. These signs further warn people who have probably already missed the rapture, to reject sin and turn to God. If God's mercy and forgiveness were not still available to man, further postponement of final judgement and destruction would be unnecessary.
Since creation, only the great flood of Noah's day is comparable to the supernatural, global judgements described in Revelation. Still, the opening of the seven seals is only the beginning. As God draws back his hand of protection ever so slightly, the four horsemen of the Apocalypse bring deception, war, economic chaos, famine and death to the world. Fittingly, the first horseman is a false Christ, who brings even greater spiritual deception and blindness to the world, than already exists. Still, many remain blind to their own blindness. There is nothing random or capricious about the Great Tribulation and judgements. Indeed, God has always extended mercy and protection to both the righteous and the wicked, but will not always contend with evil (Mat 13:49, 5:45).
A key to understanding the destruction and havoc released on the earth by the seven seals, is God's restraint, not the judgement. A righteous, holy, creator-God has every right to judge and destroy evil and sin in one fell swoop. A more difficult question than, "Why is God judging rebellious, sin-loving men?" is "Why has he delayed so long?" As the judgements grow progressively worse, an incredible truth becomes evident. In spite of the pain and destruction, men still cling to evil and reject God (Rev 6:15-17, 13:3-4, 9:20-21). Even after the sixth seal is opened and a great earthquake shakes the entire earth (perhaps a meteorite causes a shift in the polar ice caps) rebellious men still hide from God. The seventh seal brings silence, followed by trumpets announcing even more severe judgements. It is as though God's silence against evil is finally ended (Rev 8-9).
The scroll is similar to a legal document of the day.Both a 'Last Will and Testament' or a 'Title Deed' were sealed seven times, included writing on both sides, and could only be opened by one who met all terms and condition. Such a person was a kinsman- redeemer. Many believe the scroll is the 'Title Deed' to the unspoiled, perfect world created by God, and that Christ, is reclaiming the birthright of God's people. That 'birthright' is an open, eternal relationship with God and dominion over all created things. Mankind exchanged his birthright for the temporary, worthless sin and pleasures of the world, just as Esau exchanged his birthright for a bowl of stew (Gen 25:29-34).
Sandra has seen the world's evil and claims a faith in God. Like many, she has rejected God's standard of righteousness, rather than rejecting the sin and evil of a lost and dying world. Those who claim Christ as Lord, but ignore his righteousness, may one day meet him as judge (Mat 25:34-40). (#925)