The trumpets of history sounded to alert people of the final judgments; their trumpet blast was to call people back into covenant relationship with their God. They were designed to call people to repent but “they repented not of their sins.” The Book of Revelation reveals Christ working out the provisions of God’s Covenant in the Last Days. It also reveals Christianity’s Response to that Covenant by Ulrike
THE FEAST OF TRUMPETS GIVES US THE FRAMEWORK IN FINDING THE MEANING OF REVELATION’S TRUMPETS
The feast of Trumpets was observed on the first day of the seventh month. Now the first day of every month was begun with the blowing of trumpets. So why make special mention of the blowing of trumpets on the first day of the seventh month?
The unique difference of the seventh month was in the realization that this was the month containing the Day of Atonement when the High Priest in before the Ark of the Covenant. All were to search the hearts and consecrate themselves to the Lord in preparation for this solemn day which represented the final judgment.
It is interesting that seven months pass, each month beginning with a trumpet blast. On the seventh month, we have the seventh trumpet announcing the Day of Atonement.
Are any bells ringing? Do we see parallels with these feasts and the sounding of trumpets in Revelation?
In Revelation we have seven trumpets blown consecutively, not all together. And when the seventh trumpet blows, in chapter 11, we see the inner door into the Most Holy of Heaven opened and we see the ark, while the 24 elders declare that the time of judgment has come.
It seems very likely that the blowing of the seven trumpets in Revelation correspond to the blowing of trumpets at the seven New Moon (or New Month) festivals in the Old Testament. Each new moon trumpet blowing was understood as a day of judgment in miniature, which warned people to prepare for the final judgment ushered in by the Feast of Trumpets. When the seventh trumpet blew, it was to announce the Day of Atonement was at hand.
In like manner, the trumpets in Revelation each have a warning function. When the seventh trumpet is sounded (Rev. 11:18) the judgment is announced and the Ark of the Covenant is seen.
DO THE TRUMPETS SOUND BEFORE OR AFTER THE GOLDEN CENSOR IS CAST DOWN?
Revelation 8 begins with a heavenly scene. We see the High Priest with the Golden censor standing before the altar of incense, making intercession for the people.
This series begins once again with our High Priest in the “holy place” of the heavenly sanctuary. The golden altar of incense is in the “holy place” not in the “most holy place’.
Revelation has already depicted Christ as “tending the lamps” filling His churches with the oil of the Holy Spirit. Here we see Him offering incense before the throne.
These were two functions of the High Priest in the Holy Place–
Ex. 30:7 And Aaron (type of our High Priest) shall burn thereon (on the altar of incense) sweet incense every morning: when he dresseth the lamps, he shall burn incense upon it. 30:8 And when Aaron lighteth the lamps at even, he shall burn incense upon it, a perpetual incense before the LORD throughout your generations.
Throughout the ages of the Christian Church, Christ was officiating as the HIGH PRIEST for them in the heavenly sanctuary.
But then in verse five, we see a change– The angel takes fire from the altar and fills the censor. This signifies He is getting ready to into the Most Holy Place.
Lev. 16:12 And he shall take a censer full of burning coals of fire from off the altar before the LORD, and his hands full of sweet incense beaten small, and bring [it] within the veil:
He is ready to go into the Most Holy Place — the day of Atonement is about to begin. In the earthly day of atonement service the priest was to “take a censer full of burning coals of fire from off the altar before the LORD, and sweet incense and bring it within the veil”, as we saw in the text above. On the day of Atonement the Priest took this censor filled with burning coals, as well as incense, with him into the Most Holy Place. When he came out of the Most Holy Place, the censor was put down and sin and unrepentant sinners were “cast out” of the camp. (Lev. 23:29)
When the priest comes out and throws down the censor, it will be too late to change.
Please notice something here:
When the Priest throws down the censor there will be noise and an earthquake and thunderings. BUT it is not until the very last trumpet is sounded that the noise, thunderings, lightnings and an earthquake are again referred too, at the end of Rev. 11.
Rev. 8:5 And the angel took the censer, filled with fire of the altar, and cast it into the earth; and there were VOICES, AMD THUNDERINGS, AND LIGHTNINGS, AMD AM EARTHQUAKE.
When do see this happening?
Rev. 11:15,19 And the seventh angel sounded….the temple of God was opened in heaven and there was seen in his temple the ark of his testament; AND THERE WERE VOICES, LIGHTNINGS, and THUNDERINGS and an EARTHQUAKE, and great HAIL.
Here we see that the events described as happening after the “throwing down”, namely the noise, thunder, voices and lightning, happen AFTER the seventh trumpet begins to sound, and before it has finished sounded. When it finishes sounding the kingdoms of earth will be the kingdoms of Christ. Therefore the trumpets are the WARNING that the censor WILL be thrown down, not that it has been thrown down.
You will recall from the study of the feast of trumpets, that a trumpet was sounded at the beginning of each month. Each new moon or New Month the blowing of the trumpet was understood as a day of judgment in miniature, which warned people to prepare for the final judgment ushered in by the Feast of Trumpets in the seventh month. In like manner history shows seven trumpets sounded. The ceremonial trumpets were spaced over the entire seven months between Passover and the Day of Atonement. Each trumpet call held the concept of a miniature” or foretaste of the final judgment. In like manner Revelation’s trumpets cover the period from the “Cross” the fulfillment of the Passover, to the final judgment when the righteous receive their rewards and those who destroy the earth are destroyed.
These trumpets are blown in order to get men to repent, to get them to stop worshipping their idols of gold, silver, brass, stone and wood (9:20) but they do not repent. Even after the sixth trumpet is blown, the people must continue to prophesy before the nations and people. So these trumpets are not another depiction of the last plagues as some suggest. The plagues happen after probation closes. The trumpets are warnings fo destructive religious delusions in the world, and calls to the world to prepare for the final judgment, while probation is being offered. It follows the type presented by the trumpets in Israel, one every month for seven months, which were seen as “miniature” judgments leading to the final day of atonement judgment.
When the seventh trumpet is blown, it is then that the door into the most Holy is opened in the temple of heaven and the ark of the covenant is seen, and the 24 elders announce that the time of judgment has come.
The 7th trumpet announces the investigative judgment in Revelation chapter 11:18-19. Probation is not closed before then. Following the sixth trumpet the people are told to go and prophecy again before many peoples and nations and tongues and kings. (Rev. 10:11) So probation is still open as late as the sixth trumpet! The thunders were about to be revealed after the sixth trumpet– but they were sealed. (Rev. 10:4) We are told it wasn’t time yet but in the days of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God would be wrapped up and finished. (Rev. 10:7)
People thought Christ was coming in 1844 –they gave the loud cry– it was a sweet message, but the disappointment made it bitter in their belly. It wasn’t time yet for Christ to come, for “the mystery of God” was not yet finished, His work in the Most Holy was now to commence. (Rev. 11:19) Instead of welcoming the Lord after the sixth trumpet, God’s people were commissioned to go and preach again, to all nations, this time including the message contained in the seventh trumpet, which is the three angel’s messages of Rev. 14. And yes, it is after that–at the end of the seventh trumpet that thunders and voices are finally heard. These noises do not occur BEFORE THE TRUMPETS sound– but after the trumpets have sounded– because the censor is not cast down till after the judgment in the Most Holy Place is finished.