Keys to Revelation – Chapter 6
AUTHOR: Capoccia, Tony
PUBLISHED ON: May 12, 2003
PUBLISHED IN: Bible Studies

                        Keys to Revelation – Chapter 6

Taken from the HOLY BIBLE: NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION (C) 1978 by the New
York International Bible Society, used by permission of Zondervan Bible

          BIBLE TEXT                                  COMMENTARY

REV 6:1  I watched as the Lamb            [Lamb] – Lamb of God is Jesus Christ.
opened the first of the seven           
seals. Then I heard one of the four      NOTE: With the opening of the first
living creatures say in a voice          seal, the beginning of the seven-year
like thunder, “Come!”                    tribulation period is described, 
                                          which is the time of judgment for 
                                          Israel and for the whole world.   

                                          [Come!] – This call is for the first
                                          of the four horses.       

REV 6:2  I looked, and there before      [white horse] – It was customary in
me was a white horse! Its rider          biblical times for a conqueror to
held a bow, and he was given a            ride in triumph on a white horse.
crown, and he rode out as a
conqueror bent on conquest.              [bow] – Typical weapon for a king to
                                          carry into battle in that part of the

                                          [crown] – Greek word is “stephanos”
                                          which is a crown of victory and not
                                          a crown of a sovereign. 

                                          [conqueror] – This is the AntiChrist,
                                          the “man of sin” who comes and tries
                                          to conquer the world.  See DAN 9:26-

REV 6:3  When the Lamb opened the         
second seal, I heard the second
living creature say, “Come!” 

REV 6:4  Then another horse came          [fiery red] – A color representing
out, a fiery red one. Its rider was      bloodshed and sin.
given power to take peace from the
earth and to make men slay each          [rider..given..power] – A reminder
other. To him was given a large          that in all events it is God who 
sword.                                    allows and empowers mankind to carry
                                          out His will.

                                          [take peace..make slay] – This rider
                                          follows the Antichrist who tries to
                                          take over the world and the result is
                                          war and bloodshed. 

                                          [large sword] – A long sword often
                                          carried into battle that symbolizes
                                          violent death and war.

REV 6:5  When the Lamb opened the        [black] – The color of mourning,
third seal, I heard the third            affliction, and famine. 
living creature say, “Come!” I
looked, and there before me was a        [scales] – A yoke or beam with a
black horse! Its rider was holding        weight on one side and the substance
a pair of scales in his hand.            to be measured on the other.

REV 6:6  Then I heard what sounded        [quart of wheat] – Dry measure of
like a voice among the four living        about a quart (1.92 pints).  This was
creatures, saying, “A quart of            daily ration of food for one man. And
wheat for a day’s wages, and three        he got it for his [day’s wages]. This
quarts of barley for a day’s wages,      would indicate that the famine and
and do not damage the oil and the        inflation levels after the first
wine!”                                    series of wars was so severe, that a
                                          man worked all day for just enough
                                          food for himself, leaving his family
                                          and those unable to work without

                                          [three quarts of barley] – Poor man’s
                                          diet and cheaper than wheat.  The
                                          worker could chose it instead of the

                                          [oil..wine] – Staples of the society
                                          and God in His judgment continues to
                                          show mercy by not making the famine
                                          as severe as He could. 

REV 6:7  When the Lamb opened the
fourth seal, I heard the voice of
the fourth living creature say,

REV 6:8  I looked, and there before      [pale horse] – The word means a
me was a pale horse! Its rider was        yellowish green, but refers here to
named Death, and Hades was                the color of a corpse or the look
following close behind him. They          of a person struck with terror.
were given power over a fourth of
the earth to kill by sword, famine        [Death] – This is the death horse and
and plague, and by the wild beasts        right behind him is a fifth horse
of the earth.                            named Hades, which is another name
                                          for Hell, the place of torment until
                                          the Final Judgment.

                                          [fourth of earth] – Today it would be
                                          approximately 1.5 Billion people

                                          [sword] – The wars and bloodshed

                                          [famine] – Starvation of the masses

                                          [plague] – Diseases from the war, if
                                          they used “germ warfare” and/or the
                                          simple judgment of God in the form of
                                          a Divine ordered disease.

                                          [wild beasts] – A revolt of the
                                          Animal Kingdom, possibly caused by
                                          the displacement of war and the
                                          scarcity of an adequate food supply.

REV 6:9  When he opened the fifth
seal, I saw under the altar the          [under the altar] – In the Levitical
souls of those who had been slain        rite the blood was poured out at the
because of the word of God and the        foot of the altar.  John sees an
testimony they had maintained.            altar in heaven with souls (people)
                                          under it.

                                          [slain] – They were Christians that
                                          had been killed for their faith in
                                          Christ.  It is likely that these
                                          Christians were killed during the
                                          Tribulation Period.

REV 6:10  They called out in a loud      [avenge] – They cry out like David
voice, “How long, Sovereign Lord,        for God to judge wickedness because
holy and true, until you judge the        God is Holy and all sin is an affront
inhabitants of the earth and avenge      to His Sovereignty.
our blood?” 

REV 6:11  Then each of them was          [white robes] – See REV 19:8 and
given a white robe, and they were        19:14
told to wait a little longer, until
the number of their fellow servants      [wait] – God has a timetable for this
and brothers who were to be killed        world and is very patient with the
as they had been was completed.          wickedness of man, but the day is
                                          coming when the evilness of man will
                                          be completed and then Jesus will
                                          judge the world.

REV 6:12  I watched as he opened          [sixth seal] – The first five seals
the sixth seal. There was a great        were the direct result of man’s
earthquake. The sun turned black          actions.  A man tried to conquer the
like sackcloth made of goat hair,        world (Antichrist-Seal 1).  Men from
the whole moon turned blood red,          this attempted takeover fought with
                                          each other (War-Seal 2).  The result
                                          of this major war was a worldwide
                                          food shortage (Famine-Seal 3).
                                          Because of the war, famines, and the
                                          problems that ensued many on earth
                                          died (Death-Seal 4). The mass killing
                                          of Christians by unsaved man.
                                          Martyrs-Seal 5)

                                          But the sixth seal is the direct
                                          action of God, where He pours out His
                                          judgments against man and his earth.

                                          [great earthquake] – God often has
                                          used earthquakes to introduce His
                                          judgments.  This was not a local
                                          quake but rather one that likely
                                          shook the entire world. 

                                          [sun..black] – A black sun is in fact
                                          no sun!  There would be total dark-
                                          ness except for the red moon.

                                          [red..moon] – The whole world sees a
                                          blood red moon which causes fear and
                                          panic in the hearts of sinful man.
                                          Since the moon gets its light from
                                          the sun, God somehow caused the moon
                                          to emit it’s own light of judgment.

REV 6:13  and the stars in the sky        [stars..fell] – Literally, shooting
fell to earth, as late figs drop          stars were observed to be “falling”
from a fig tree when shaken by a          to the earth.
strong wind. 

REV 6:14  The sky receded like a          [sky receded] – Violent sights in the
scroll, rolling up, and every            heavens that made the sky appear to
mountain and island was removed          roll up like a scroll. 
from its place. 
                                          [mountain..island..removed] – They
                                          did not necessarily disappear, but
                                          may have literally moved to new
                                          locations by the violence of Nuclear
                                          War or simply by the finger of God.

REV 6:15  Then the kings of the          [man hid] – The events on the earth
earth, the princes, the generals,        and in the heavens were terrifying to
the rich, the mighty, and every          every man and woman on earth.
slave and every free man hid in
caves and among the rocks of the

REV 6:16  They called to the              [hide us] – God’s judgments were to
mountains and the rocks, “Fall on        not only judge sin, but also to cause
us and hide us from the face of him      sinful man to repent and cry out to
who sits on the throne and from the      God for mercy.  However, they would
wrath of the Lamb!                        not acknowledge their sin but only to
                                          hide from the wrath of God, wishing 
                                          that the rocks would crush and kill
                                          them, rather than agree with God
                                          about their sins and submit to Him.

REV 6:17  For the great day of            [who can stand] – No one can ever
their wrath has come, and who can        stand smug in their sins before God
stand?”                                  when He comes to judge the earth.

Tony Capoccia
Box 130
Shreveport, LA 71110
Modem (318) 949-1456
300/1200/2400/9600 Baud

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