HH, Sir Godfrey Gregg D.Div
Revelation 8:2 Now that God’s servants have been sealed for protection, the seventh seal can be opened. Seven angels are given seven trumpets. The first four angels sound their trumpets resulting in great devastation to the life-supporting systems of the earth. As harsh as these judgments are, they are less severe than the remaining three trumpets to come. He opened We must ever bear in mind that it is the Lamb who opens each of the seals initiating the judgments which befall the earth and its citizens.
THE SEVENTH SEAL
The seventh seal contains the seven trumpet judgments and the seventh trumpet contains the seven bowl judgments.
The full effects of opening all seven seals include all seven trumpet judgments and the seven bowl judgments: 6 seal judgments + 6 trumpet judgments + 7 bowl judgments = 19 specific judgments in all. At the opening of the seventh seal, 6 judgments (the six seals) have passed and 13 remains (six trumpets and seven bowls within the seventh trumpet).
SILENCE IN HEAVEN
“In the Jewish temple, musical instruments and singing resounded during the whole time of the offering of the sacrifices, which formed the first part of the service. But at the offering of incense, solemn silence was kept.”
Zephaniah revealed that silence would attend the Day of the Lord in response to the solemn occasion where He will prepare a sacrifice and invite His guests (Zephaniah 1:7).
The sacrifice will consist of the men who oppose God and the guests are the birds of heaven who will feast upon them (Revelation 19:17-18). This silence precedes the Day of the Lord in its narrow sense—the actual day when Christ returns and physically defeats the armies gathered against him. The Day of the Lord, in its broadest sense, is already in progress. Who have eyes to see will see and take heed of the word of the Lord. These are the closing of days.
The implication is that when the judgment about to happen becomes visible as the seventh seal is broken and the scroll unrolled, both the redeemed and the angels are reduced to silence in anticipation of the grim reality of the destruction they see written on the scroll. The half an hour of silence is the calm before the storm. It is the silence of foreboding, of intense expectation, of awe at what God is about to do.
The Scripture reveals a pattern of silence associated with the recognition of God’s holiness and righteous judgment (Psalm 76:8-9; Habakkuk 2:20; Zephaniah 1:7; Zecharias 2:13).
When Heaven falls silent for half an hour, when all the singing, glorifying, and praising ceases, there will be a deep sense of foreboding. The judgments, every righteous soul knows, must be formidable in the extreme, yet they will shudder in awe at the prospect of having to witness their administration.