Revelation 9:10 – They had tails like scorpions, and there were stings in their tails. Their power was to hurt men five months.
We discovered in Revelation 9:3 and 9:5 that the locusts have the power to sting men like earthly scorpions. Just as earthly scorpions sting with their tail, the tormenting locusts deliver their sting with a scorpion-like tail. The word translated “stings” is the same word used in the following passage:
1 Corinthians 15:54-56 – So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: “Death is swallowed up in victory.” “O death, where is your sting? O Hades, where is your victory?” The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law.
As discussed in Revelation 9:3, the locusts emerging from the smoke of the torment of those in the bottomless pit could be the source of this “sting of death.” The Greek word for “stings” is also translated “goads” in the following passages:
Acts 9:4-5 – Then he fell to the ground, and heard a voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?” And he said, “Who are You, Lord?” Then the Lord said, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. It is hard for you to kick against the goads.”
Acts 26:14 – And when we all had fallen to the ground, I heard a voice speaking to me and saying in the Hebrew language, ‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads.’
To “kick against the goads” is to engage in futile resistance. Goads are sticks with sharp ends used to prod or drive livestock such as cattle:
1 Samuel 13:20-21 – But all the Israelites would go down to the Philistines to sharpen each man’s plowshare, his mattock, his ax, and his sickle; and the charge for a sharpening was a pim for the plowshares, the mattocks, the forks, and the axes, and to set the points of the goads.
Ecclesiastes 12:11 – The words of the wise are like goads, and the words of scholars are like well-driven nails, given by one Shepherd.
The more an animal resists by kicking the goads the more they get inflicted with pain from the sharp object. Likewise, it will be futile to try to escape the sting from the scorpions from the bottomless pit. Perhaps trying to escape by trying to commit suicide, for instance, may prove to be more painful. For five months anyone not protected with the seal of God on their forehead will be subject to the torment inflicted by the locust’s sting, as discussed in Revelation 9:5.
It is interesting to note that the passages below associate things that sting like scorpions and bees with sharp things like goads, briers, and thorns:
Ezekiel 2:6 – “And you, son of man, do not be afraid of them nor be afraid of their words, though briers and thorns are with you and you dwell among scorpions; do not be afraid of their words or dismayed by their looks, though they are a rebellious house.”
Psalms 118:12 – They surrounded me like bees; they were quenched like a fire of thorns; for in the name of the LORD I will destroy them.
Isaiah 7:18-19 – And it shall come to pass in that day that the LORD will whistle for the fly that is in the farthest part of the rivers of Egypt, and for the bee that is in the land of Assyria. They will come, and all of them will rest in the desolate valleys and in the clefts of the rocks, and on all thorns and in all pastures.
Thorns and briers in the land are a sign of being cursed:
Hebrews 6:7-8 – For the earth which drinks in the rain that often comes upon it, and bears herbs useful for those by whom it is cultivated, receives blessing from God; but if it bears thorns and briers, it is rejected and near to being cursed, whose end is to be burned.
Thorns and briers can also represent people or nations who continually cause frustration and difficulty:
Numbers 33:55 – But if you do not drive out the inhabitants of the land from before you, then it shall be that those whom you let remain shall be irritants in your eyes and thorns in your sides, and they shall harass you in the land where you dwell.
Joshua 23:13 – …know for certain that the LORD your God will no longer drive out these nations from before you. But they shall be snares and traps to you, and scourges on your sides and thorns in your eyes, until you perish from this good land which the LORD your God has given you.
Judges 2:3 – Therefore I also said, ‘I will not drive them out before you; but they shall be thorns in your side, and their gods shall be a snare to you.'”
Someday, Israel will be free from these “briers” and “thorns” who have given them grief over the millennia:
Ezekiel 28:24 – “And there shall no longer be a pricking brier or a painful thorn for the house of Israel from among all who are around them, who despise them. Then they shall know that I am the Lord GOD.”
It is befitting that these “briers” and “thorns” who hate Israel and rebel against God will suffer the sting of the locusts in the fifth Trumpet judgment. If they don’t repent they will face God’s refining fire and their torment will turn into smoke:
Isaiah 9:18 – For wickedness burns as the fire; it shall devour the briers and thorns, and kindle in the thickets of the forest; they shall mount up like rising smoke.
Revelation 14:11 – And the smoke of their torment ascends forever and ever; and they have no rest day or night, who worship the beast and his image, and whoever receives the mark of his name.
This verse marks the end of John’s physical description of the tormenting locusts from the bottomless pit. While they are similar in appearance and behavior to natural locusts, these supernatural creatures are far beyond their natural counterparts in terms of destructive ability and dreadfulness. It is rather absurd that some have tried to explain away these supernatural locusts as human-made technology like a helicopter. While there might be a slight resemblance, helicopters do not sting or torment men, nor do they come from the bottomless pit in the center of the earth:
As these demons are compared to scorpions, it is clear that their mission is to hurt men. The very nature of this full scale demonic torment that drives men to seek death and not find it, or to pursue death and not catch it, is not described.
There are references in the bible where demons possessed people such as found (in Matthew 8:28; 4:23-24; 8:6; Mark 9:20-22).
These demons are given the power to torment unbelievers for 5 full months with no relief for the tormented (see note on verse 5). This stresses God’s sovereign power over the timing of their assault. Eventually God will return them to the abyss with their evil master, then send them to the lake of fire (chapter 20).
Verses 11-12: The “king” over these demons is apparently Satan, who is given temporary authority over the Abyss. The name “Abaddon” is Hebrew for “Destruction” (compare Job 28:22; Prov. 15:11; 27:20). Its Greek equivalent is “Apollyon” meaning “Destroyer”. Since the Roman emperor Domitian called himself Apollo incarnate, the mention of Satan as “Apollyon” (from the same root as Apollo), may be an intentional play on words. “Two” more “woes” are still coming. As the end approaches, the intensity and severity of the trumpet judgments increase dramatically.
image courtesy: Revelation- 9-10 – global impact studies
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We are now living in the absolute End Times as per biblical prophecy.
Our Lord Jesus Christ – King of Kings. 2nd Coming and return is IMMENENT!.
Please do not waist another a minute.
No matter what religion you serve, there is only one God.
If, you want to be assured that you will not have to endure the perilous times that will befall you.
Irrespective, of what sins you may have committed at any time of your life. If you humble yourself and ask for God’s forgiveness. He will forgive you and wash them all away and welcome you as his beloved son or daughter with open arms.
If you are not a child of Father God or have not asked Jesus Christ to come into your life yet?
I implore you to do this without delay.
Read this prayer of Salvation and ask God to forgive you now and accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour and you will be assured of eternal life.