VERSE 1. And I saw another mighty angel come down from
heaven, clothed with a cloud: and a rainbow was upon his
head, and his face was as it were the sun, and his feet as
pillars of fire. 2. And he had in his hand a little book
open: and he set his right foot upon the sea, and his left
foot on the earth. p. 488, Para. 2.
In this scripture we have another instance in which the consecutive line of thought is for a time interrupted; and this chapter comes in as -- p. 488, Para. 3.
A Parenthetical Prophecy. -- Chapter 9 closed with the events of the sixth trumpet. The sounding of the seventh trumpet is not introduced until we reach the 15th verse of chapter 11. The whole of chapter 10 and a portion of chapter 11, therefore, come in parenthetically between the sixth and seventh trumpets. That which is particularly connected with the sounding of the sixth trumpet is recorded in chapter 9. The prophet has other events to introduce before the opening of another trumpet, and takes occasion to do it in the scripture which intervenes to the 15th verse of chapter 11. Among these is the prophecy of chapter 10. Let us first look at the chronology of the message of this angel. p. 488, Para. 4.
The Little Book. --
He had in his hand a little book
open." There is necessary inference to be drawn from this
language, which is, that this book was at some time closed
up. We read in Daniel of a book which was closed up and
sealed to a certain time: "But thou, O Daniel, shut up the
words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many
shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased.
Dan. 12:4. Since this book was closed up only till the time
of the end, it follows that at the time of the end the book
would be opened; and as this closing was mentioned in
prophecy, it would be but reasonable to expect that in the
predictions of events to take place at the time of the end,
the opening of this book would also be mentioned. There is
no book spoken of as closed up and sealed except the book
of Daniel's prophecy; and there is no account of the
opening of that book, unless it be here in the 10th of
Revelation. We see, furthermore, that in both places the
contents ascribed to the book are the same. The book which
Daniel had directions to close up and seal had reference to
How long shall it be to the end of these wonders?
And when the angel of this chapter comes down with the
little book open, on which he bases his proclamation, he
gives a message in relation to time:
Time shall be no
longer. Nothing more could be required to show that both
expressions refer to one book, and to prove that the little
book which the angel had in his hand open, was the book of
the prophecy of Daniel. p. 488, Para. 5.
An important point is now determined toward settling the
chronology of this angel; for we have seen that the
prophecy, more particularly the prophetic periods of
Daniel, were not to be opened till the time of the end; and
if this is the book which the angel had in his hand open,
it follows that he proclaims his message this side of the
time when the book should be opened, or somewhere this side
of the commencement of the time of the end. All that now
remains on this point is to ascertain when the time of the
end commenced; and the book of Daniel itself furnishes data
from which this can be done. In Daniel 11, from verse 30,
the papal power is brought to view. In verse 35 we read,
And some of them of understanding shall fall, to try them,
and to purge, and make them white, even to the time of the
end. Here it is brought to view the period of supremacy of
the little horn, during which time the saints, times, and
laws were to be given into his hand, and from him suffer
fearful persecutions. This is declared to reach to the time
of the end. It ended A.D. 1798, where the 1260 years of
papal rule expired. There the time of the end commenced,
and the book was opened. And since that time, many have run
to and fro, and knowledge on these prophetic subjects has
marvelously increased. p. 489, Para. 1.
The chronology of the events of Revelation 10 is further
ascertained from the fact that this angel is identical with
the first angel of Revelation 14. The points of identity
between them are easily seen:  They both have a special
message to proclaim;  they both utter their proclamation
with a loud voice;  they both use similar language,
referring to the great Creator as the maker of heaven and
earth, the sea, and the things that are therein; and 
they both proclaim time, one swearing that time should be
no more, and the other proclaiming that the hour of God's
judgment has come. But the message of Rev. 14:6 is located
this side of the commencement of the time of the end. It is
a proclamation of the hour of God's judgment come, and
hence must have its application in the last generation.
Paul did not preach the hour of judgment come. Luther and
his coadjutors did not preach it. Paul reasoned of a
judgment to come, indefinitely future; and Luther placed it
at least three hundred years off from his day. Moreover,
Paul warns the church against any such preaching as that
the hour of God's judgment has come, until a certain time.
In 2 Thess. . 2:1-3, he says:
Now we beseech you,
brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by
our gathering together unto him, that ye be not soon shaken
in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word,
nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at
hand. Let no man deceive you by any means; for that day
shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and
that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition, etc.
Here Paul introduces to our view the man of sin, the little
horn, the papacy, and covers with a caution the whole
period of his supremacy, which, as already noticed,
continued 1260 years, ending in 1798. In 1798, therefore,
the restriction against proclaiming the day of Christ at
hand ceased; in 1798, the time of the end commenced, and
the seal was taken from the little book. Since that period,
therefore, the angel of Revelation 14 has gone forth
proclaiming the hour of God's judgment come; and it is
since that time, too, that the angel of chapter 10 has
taken his stand on sea and land, and sworn that time shall
be no more. Of their identity there can be no question; and
all the arguments which go to locate the one, are equally
effective in the case of the other. We need not enter into
any argument here to show that the present generation is
witnessing the fulfilment of these two prophecies. In the
preaching of the advent, more especially from 1840 to 1844,
began their full and circumstantial accomplishment. The
position of this angel, one foot upon the sea and the other
on the land, denotes the wide extent of his proclamation by
sea and by land. Had this message been designed for only
one country, it would have been sufficient for the angel to
take his position on the land only. But he has one foot
upon the sea, from which we may infer that his message
would cross the ocean, and extend to the various nations
and divisions of the globe; and this inference is
strengthened by the fact that the Advent proclamation,
above referred to, did go to every missionary station in
the world. More on this under chapter 14. p. 490, Para. 1.
VERSE 3. And cried with a loud voice, as when a lion
roareth: and when he had cried, seven thunders uttered
their voices. 4. And when the seven thunders had uttered
their voices, I was about to write: and I heard a voice
from heaven saying unto me, Seal up those things which the
seven thunders uttered, and write them not. p. 491, Para.
The Seven Thunders. -- It would be vain to speculate to any great length upon the seven thunders, in hope of gaining a definite knowledge of what they uttered. We must acquiesce in the directions given to John concerning them, and leave them where he left them, sealed up, unwritten, and consequently to us unknown. There is, however, a conjecture extant in relation to them, which may not inappropriately be mentioned here. It is that what the seven thunders uttered is the experience of the Adventists engaged in that movement, embracing their sore disappointment and trial. Something, evidently, was uttered which it would not be well for the church to know; and for God to have given an inspired record of the Advent movement in advance, would have been simply to defeat that movement, which we verily believe was in all its particulars an accomplishment of his purposes, and according to his will. Why, then, any mention of the seven thunders at all? Following out the above noticed conjecture, the conclusion would be that we, having met in our history with sudden, mysterious, and unexpected events, as startling and strange as thunders from an unclouded sky, might not give up in utter perplexity, inferring, as we may, that all is in the order and providence of God, since something of this nature was sealed up, and hidden from the church. p. 491, Para. 2.
VERSE 5. And the angel which I saw stand upon the sea and
upon the earth lifted up his hand to heaven, 6. And sware
by him that liveth forever, and ever, who created heaven,
and the things that therein are, and the earth, and the
things that therein are, and the sea, and the things which
are therein, that there should be time no longer. p. 492,
Time No Longer. -- What is the meaning of this most solemn
declaration? It cannot mean that with the message of this
angel, time, as computed in this world, in comparison with
eternity, should end; for the next verse speaks of the days
of the voice of the seventh angel; and chapter 11:15-19
gives us some of the events to take place under this
trumpet, which transpire in the present state. And it
cannot mean probationary time; for that does not cease till
Christ closes his work as priest, which is not till after
the seventh angel has commenced to sound. Rev. 11:15, 19;
15:5-8. It must therefore mean prophetic time; for there is
no other to which it can refer. Prophetic time shall be no
more -- not that time should never be used in a prophetic
sense; for the
days of the voice of the seventh angel,
spoken of immediately after, doubtless mean the years of
the seventh angel; but no prophetic period should extend
beyond this message; those that reach to the latest point
would all close there. Arguments on the prophetic periods,
showing that the longest ones did not extend beyond the
autumn of 1844, will be found in remarks on Dan. 8:14. p.
492, Para. 2.
VERSE 7. But in the days of the voice of the seventh
angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God
should be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the
prophets. p. 493, Para. 1.
The Days of the Voice of the Seventh Angel. -- This seventh trumpet is not that which is spoken of in 1 Cor. 15:52 as the last trump, which wakes the sleeping dead; but it is the seventh of the series of the seven trumpets, and like the others of this series, occupies days [years] in sounding. In the days when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God shall be finished. Not in the day when he shall begin to sound, not in the very commencement of his sounding, but in the early years of his sounding, the mystery of God shall be finished. p. 493, Para. 2.
Commencement of the Seventh Trumpet. -- From the events to
take place under the sounding of the seventh trumpet, its
commencement may be located with sufficient definiteness at
the close of the prophetic periods in 1844. Not many years
from that date, then, the mystery of God is to be finished.
The great event, whatever it is, is right upon us. Some
closing and decisive work, with whatever of importance and
solemnity it bears in its train, is near at hand. There is
an importance connected with the finishing of any of the
works of God. Such an act marks a solemn and important era.
Our Saviour, when expiring upon the cross, cried,
finished [John 19:30]; and when the great work of mercy
for fallen man is completed, it will be announced by a
voice from the throne of God, proclaiming, in tones which
roll like thunder through all the earth, the solemn
It is done! Rev. 16:17. It is therefore no
uncalled-for solicitude which prompts us to inquire what
bearing such events have upon our eternal hopes and
interests; and, when we read of the finishing of the
mystery of God, to ask what that mystery is, and in what
its finishing consists. p. 493, Para. 2.
The Mystery of God. -- A few direct testimonies from that
Book which has been given as a lamp to our feet will show
what this mystery is. Eph. 1:9, 10:
Having made known unto
us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure
which he hath purposed in himself: that in the dispensation
of the fulness of time he might gather together in one all
things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are
on earth; even in him. Here God's purpose to gather
together all in Christ is called the
mystery of his will.
This is accomplished through the gospel. Eph. 6:19:
for me [Paul asks that prayers be made], that utterance may
be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly, to make
known the mystery of the gospel. Here the gospel is
declared plainly to be a mystery. It is called in Col. 4:3,
the mystery of Christ. Eph. 3:3, 6:
How that by revelation
he made known unto me the mystery [as I wrote afore in few
that the Gentiles should be fellow heirs,
and of the same body, and partakers of his promise in
Christ by the gospel. Paul here declares that the mystery
was made known to him by revelation, as he had before
written. In this he refers to his Epistle to the Galatians,
where he recorded what had been given him
in these words:
But I certify you, brethren, that the
gospel which was preached of me is not after man; for I
neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by
the revelation of Jesus Christ. Gal. 1:11, 12. Here Paul
tells us plainly that what he received through revelation
was the gospel. In Eph. 3:3, he calls it the mystery made
known to him by revelation, as he had written before. The
Epistle to the Galatians was written in A.D. 58, and that
to the Ephesians in A.D. 64. p. 493, Para. 3.
In view of these testimonies, few will be disposed to deny that the mystery of God is the gospel. It is the same, then, as if the angel had declared, In the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the gospel shall be finished. But what is the finishing of the gospel? Let us first inquire for what it was given. It was given to take out from the nations a people for God's name. Acts 15:14. Its finishing must, as a matter of course, be the close of this work. It will be finished when the number of God's people is made up, mercy ceases to be offered, and probation closes. p. 494, Para. 1.
The subject is now before us in all its magnitude. Such is the momentous work to be accomplished in the early days of the voice of the seventh angel, whose trumpet notes have been reverberating through the world since the memorable epoch of 1844. God is not slack; his work is not uncertain; are we ready for the issue? p. 494, Para. 2.
VERSE 8. And the voice which I heard from heaven spake
unto me again, and said, God and take the little book which
is open in the hand of the angel which standeth upon the
sea and upon the earth. 9. And I went unto the angel, and
said unto him, Give me the little book. And he said unto
me, Take it, and eat it up; and it shall make thy belly
bitter, but it shall be in thy mouth sweet as honey. 10.
And I took the little book out of the angel's hand, and ate
it up; and it was in my mouth sweet as honey: and as soon
as I had eaten it, my belly was bitter. p. 494, Para. 1.
In verse 8, John himself is brought in to act a part as a representative of the church, probably on account of the succeeding peculiar experience of the church which the Lord of the prophecy would cause to be put on record, but which could not well be presented under the symbol of an angel. When only a straightforward proclamation is brought to view, without including the peculiar experience which the church is to pass through in connection therewith, angels may be used as symbols to represent the religious teachers who proclaim that message, as in Revelation 14; but when some particular experience of the church is to be presented, the case is manifestly different. This could most appropriately be set forth in the person of some member of the human family; hence John is himself called upon to act a part in this symbolic representation. And this being the case, the angel who here appeared to John may represent that divine messenger, who, in the order which is observed in all the work of God, has charge of this message; or he may be introduced for the purpose of representing the nature of the message, and the source from which it comes. p. 495, Para. 2.
There are not a few now living who have in their own experience met a striking fulfilment of these verses, in the joy with which they received the message of Christ's immediate second coming, the honey-like sweetness of the precious truths then brought out, and the sadness and pain that followed, when at the appointed time in 1844 the Lord did not come, but a great disappointment did. A mistake had been made which apparently involved the integrity of the little book they had been eating. What had been so like honey to their taste, suddenly became like wormwood and gall. But those who had patience to endure, so to speak, the digesting process, soon learned that the mistake was only in the event, not in the time, and that what the angel had given them was not unto death, but to their nourishment and support. [See the same facts brought to view under a similar figure in Jer. 15:16-18.] p. 495, Para. 3.
VERSE 11. And he said unto me, Thou must prophesy again
before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings.
p. 496, Para. 1.
John, standing as the representative of the church, here
receives from the angel another commission. Another message
is to go forth after the time when the first and second
messages, as leading proclamations, ceased. In other words,
we have here a prophecy of the third angel's message, now,
as we believe, in process of fulfilment. Neither will this
work be done in a corner; for it is to go before
peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings. [See chapter
14.] p. 496, Para. 2.
© by S. D. Goeldner,