Revelation 6:1-7:4 (NRSV)
Then I saw the Lamb open one of the seven seals, and I heard one of the four living creatures call out, as with a voice of thunder, "Come!" I looked, and there was a white horse! Its rider had a bow; a crown was given to him, and he came out conquering and to conquer.
When he opened the second seal, I heard the second living creature call out, "Come!" And out came another horse, bright red; its rider was permitted to take peace from the earth, so that people would slaughter one another; and he was given a great sword.
When he opened the third seal, I heard the third living creature call out, "Come!" I looked, and there was a black horse! Its rider held a pair of scales in his hand, and I heard what seemed to be a voice in the midst of the four living creatures saying, "A quart of wheat for a day's pay, and three quarts of barley for a day's pay, but do not damage the olive oil and the wine!"
When he opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature call out, "Come!" I looked and there was a pale green horse! Its rider's name was Death, and Hades followed with him; they were given authority over a fourth of the earth, to kill with sword, famine, and pestilence, and by the wild animals of the earth.
When he opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slaughtered for the word of God and for the testimony they had given; they cried out with a loud voice, "Sovereign Lord, holy and true, how long will it be before you judge and avenge our blood on the inhabitants of the earth?" They were each given a white robe and told to rest a little longer, until the number would be complete both of their fellow servants and of their brothers and sisters, who were soon to be killed as they themselves had been killed.
When he opened the sixth seal, I looked, and there came a great earthquake; the sun became black as sackcloth, the full moon became like blood, and the stars of the sky fell to the earth as the fig tree drops its winter fruit when shaken by a gale. The sky vanished like a scroll rolling itself up, and every mountain and island was removed from its place. Then the kings of the earth and the magnates and the generals and the rich and the powerful, and everyone, slave and free, hid in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains, calling to the mountains and rocks, "Fall on us and hide us from the face of the one seated on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb; for the great day of their wrath has come, and who is able to stand?"
After this I saw four angels standing at the four corners of the earth, holding back the four winds of the earth so that no wind could blow on earth or sea or against any tree. I saw another angel ascending from the rising of the sun, having the seal of the living God, and he called with a loud voice to the four angels who had been given power to damage earth and sea, saying, "Do not damage the earth or the sea or the trees, until we have marked the servants of our God with a seal on their foreheads."
And I heard the number of those who were sealed, one hundred forty-four thousand, sealed out of every tribe of the people of Israel:
WOW! Today's scripture reading reminds me why so many people are afraid to read the book of Revelation. There are many mysteries contained in this book regarding the end of days. I do not believe that there is a Bible scholar anywhere who has unlocked all of the secrets of the days to come.
But, although many will ask, "Who is able to stand?," as Christians, we can have a blessed assurance, that come what may, we are safe in the arms of Jesus.
Recently I had the privilege of visiting with a woman during her last days upon the Earth. As we would sit together in her hospice room, she would say to me, "I know that we serve a loving and a forgiving God. That is why I am not afraid."
Her courage in the face of death inspired me! She knew that "everyone who calls upon the Name of Lord shall be saved!"
In these Easter Days, let us never forget to proclaim, "Alleluia! Christ is risen! Christ is risen, indeed! Alleluia!"
Because Jesus lives, we do not need to live in fear. Although we do not know what the future will bring, we do know the one who holds the future and He loves us very much!
Be at peace, my friends! We are overcomers by the Blood of the Lamb!
Won't you pray with me:
God, thank you for keeping me safe in your arms. Only you know the time and the season that this world will end. Please help me to trust that because I believe that Jesus died, rose, and is coming again, my sins are forgiven and I will inherit eternal life! I am excited about the future, because I know that I will surely spend it with you! I pray this in Jesus' Name, Amen.
If you have questions about how to become a friend and follower of Jesus, please see the devotion entitled, “Come to Jesus” @ http://bit.ly/JVhaL