Revelation Chapter 10:1

Revelation 10:1 – I saw still another mighty angel coming down from heaven, clothed with a cloud. And a rainbow was on his head, his face was like the sun, and his feet like pillars of fire.

Chapter 10 begins with another parenthesis in the chronology of Revelation (10:1 – 11:14). These visions apparently relate to the time period covered by the first six trumpets, and thus to the latter half of the Tribulation. The “mighty angel” may be a strong angel, or even Christ Himself (the Angel of the Lord). The description is similar to that of Christ (in 1:13-16; compare Ezek. chapter 1). The “cloud” (compare Psalm 104:3), the “rainbow” (compare Rev. 4:3), the “sun” (compare 1:16), and the “pillars of fire” (compare Exodus 13:21), may refer to deity, but a parallel may also be drawn with the angel Gabriel (compare Dan. 8:16; 12:7).

In this, we must remember that John is having a dream or a vision. God appears sometimes in visions and dreams in some other way than His Godhead. Being “clothed in a cloud”, shows the royalty of this being.

“Another mighty angel”: Many commentators understand this to be Jesus Christ. But the Greek word translated “another”, means one of the same kind, that is a created being. This is not one of the 7 angels responsible for sounding the trumpets (8:2), but one of the highest ranking in heaven, filled with splendor, greatness, and strength (compare 5:2; 8:3; 18:1).

At no other time does Christ appear as an angel or created being after His resurrection. This angel is most likely Michael, Gabriel, or an angel equal to them who swears an oath by Jesus Christ, indicating something significant is about to happen. Angels play a prominent role in the Apocalypse, being mentioned sixty-six times.

A “rainbow … upon his head” reminds us of the covenant of God with man. This covenant has been fulfilled through Jesus (see note on 4:3). Perhaps God included this to remind John, that even in judgment, He will always remember His Noahic Covenant and protect His own.

“Feet as pillars of fire”: This angel’s feet and legs indicate the firm resolve with which he will execute the Day of the Lord.

The cloud, the rainbow, the sun, and the pillars of fire may refer to deity, but a parallel may also be drawn with the angel Gabriel.

Verses 2-4: The “little book” is probably a title deed to the earth (compare Jer. 32:10-11). It symbolizes Christ’s right to possess and rule the earth (compare Psalm 2:6-9). The planting of the feet on the “sea” and of His promised inheritance as Messiah. The “loud voice” shows authority as well. The little book may also contain more judgments (compare Ezek. 2:8 – 3:3). The “seven thunders” or peals of thunder may be further messages of judgment, such as the seven bowl judgments still to come (chapter 16). He is here told to “seal” them up, since they will be described in detail later.

After the sixth Trumpet judgment passes, John sees a second mighty angel. The Greek word for “mighty” is “ischuros,” which can also be translated “strong.” John uses this Greek word to describe three other angels in Revelation. The first mighty or strong angel appeared at the throne of God:

Revelation 5:1 – And I saw in the right hand of Him who sat on the throne a scroll written inside and on the back, sealed with seven seals. Then I saw a strong angel proclaiming with a loud voice, “Who is worthy to open the scroll and to loose its seals?”

Two more mighty or strong angels appear when God judges Babylon:

Revelation 18:1-2 – After these things I saw another angel coming down from heaven, having great authority, and the earth was illuminated with his glory. And he cried mightily with a loud voice, saying, “Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and has become a dwelling place of demons, a prison for every foul spirit, and a cage for every unclean and hated bird!”

Revelation 18:21 – Then a mighty angel took up a stone like a great millstone and threw it into the sea, saying, “Thus with violence the great city Babylon shall be thrown down, and shall not be found anymore.”

Michael is an archangel or chief prince (Daniel 10:13) over Israel:

Daniel 10:20-21 – Then he said, “Do you know why I have come to you? And now I must return to fight with the prince of Persia; and when I have gone forth, indeed the prince of Greece will come. But I will tell you what is noted in the Scripture of Truth. (No one upholds me against these, except Michael your prince….)”

The Hebrew word “chazaq” translated “upholds” literally means “strong.” In other words, Michael has power and strength against evil princes over other nations, or as Paul puts it: “spiritual hosts of wickedness” (Ephesians 6:12).

Some speculate that Gabriel is a mighty angel. While he is certainly a special angel sent by God to tell Daniel and Mary about the coming Messiah and Zacharias about John the Baptist, Gabriel is never described as a strong or mighty angel like Michael (Daniel 8-9, Luke 1).

Of the four mighty angels in Revelation, John only describes what the one in this chapter looks like. Since Michael is the only strong angel identified in Scripture, many believe he is the mighty angel that John sees here in Revelation. However, John’s description of the mighty angel is that of Jesus, as shown in the parallel passages below that describe Christ both pre-incarnate and in resurrection glory:

Clothed with a cloud Luke 21:27 – Then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloudwith power and great glory.

Ezekiel 1:4, 26 – Then I looked, and behold, a whirlwind was coming out of the north, a great cloud with raging fire engulfing itself; and brightness was all around it and radiating out of its midst like the color of amber, out of the midst of the fire…. And above the firmament over their heads was the likeness of a throne, in appearance like a sapphire stone; on the likeness of the throne was a likeness with the appearance of a man high above it.

Rainbow on his head Revelation 4:2-3 – Immediately I was in the Spirit; and behold, a throne set in heaven, and One sat on the throne. And He who sat there was like a jasper and a sardius stone in appearance; and there was a rainbow around the throne, in appearance like an emerald.

Ezekiel 1:28 – Like the appearance of a rainbow in a cloud on a rainy day, so was the appearance of the brightness all around it. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the LORD. So when I saw it, I fell on my face, and I heard a voice of One speaking.

Face like the sun Revelation 1:16 – He had in His right hand seven stars, out of His mouth went a sharp two-edged sword, and His countenance was like the sun shining in its strength.

Daniel 10:6 – His body was like beryl, his face like the appearance of lightning, his eyes like torches of fire, his arms and feet like burnished bronze in color, and the sound of his words like the voice of a multitude.

Ezekiel 1:27 – Also from the appearance of His waist and upward I saw, as it were, the color of amber with the appearance of fire all around within it; and from the appearance of His waist and downward I saw, as it were, the appearance of fire with brightness all around.

Feet like pillars of Fire Revelation 1:15 – His feet were like fine brass, as if refined in a furnace, and His voice as the sound of many waters.

Daniel 10:6 – His body was like beryl, his face like the appearance of lightning, his eyes like torches of fire, his arms and feet like burnished bronze in color, and the sound of his words like the voice of a multitude.

Ezekiel 1:27 – Also from the appearance of His waist and upward I saw, as it were, the color of amber with the appearance of fire all around within it; and from the appearance of His waist and downward I saw, as it were, the appearance of fire with brightness all around.

 

Any doubt that this angel is Jesus should be settled in the next chapter, as we see that this mighty angel who continues his dialogue with John equates himself with God when he calls the two witnesses “my two witnesses”:

Revelation 11:1-4 – Then I was given a reed like a measuring rod. And the angel stood, saying, “Rise and measure the temple of God, the altar, and those who worship there. But leave out the court which is outside the temple, and do not measure it, for it has been given to the Gentiles. And they will tread the holy city underfoot for forty-two months. And I will give power to my two witnesses, and they will prophesy one thousand two hundred and sixty days, clothed in sackcloth.” These are the two olive trees and the two lampstands standing before the God of the earth.

However, slight differences in Greek texts has caused dispute over whether the mighty angel is Christ or not. Some translations omit “the angel” leaving the one speaking to John as ambiguous, leading to assumptions that the “voice from heaven” in Revelation 10:8 is the one speaking to John in Revelation 11:1. However, it is clear that the mighty angel is speaking to John at the end of this chapter, continuing his dialogue into the next chapter:

Revelation 10:9-1111:1 – So I went to the angel and said to him, “Give me the little book.” And he said to me, “Take and eat it; and it will make your stomach bitter, but it will be as sweet as honey in your mouth.” Then I took the little book out of the angel’s hand and ate it, and it was as sweet as honey in my mouth. But when I had eaten it, my stomach became bitter. And he said to me, “You must prophesy again about many peoples, nations, tongues, and kings.” Then I was given a reed like a measuring rod. And the angel stood, saying….

Another slight difference in Greek texts shows that the command for John to prophesy again is given in the third person plural in one Greek text instead of the third person singular given in another text. In other words, the variant in the text shows that more than one individual was talking to John in the last verse. Since only the mighty angel and the voice from heaven spoke to John in this scene, then both would be speaking to him in the last verse, with uncertainty whether the voice from heaven or the angel continues the dialogue in Revelation 11:1.

Even with the textual variants, the mighty angel could be the one claiming the two witnesses as his in both translations. It is due to an assumption that Christ cannot appear as an angel post incarnation that has caused conflicting views due to the ambiguity introduced by variances in the Greek “Critical Text” compared to the “Majority Text.” To help clear up this issue let us take a look at this assumption and see if it has biblical merit.

Christ pre-incarnate clearly appeared in angelic form being the “Angel of the Lord.” Christ glorified, as described in Revelation matches the same descriptions as the pre-incarnate Christ in Daniel and Ezekiel, as shown in the table above. In addition, Christ is convincingly Apollyon the Destroyer, who is the “angel” over the bottomless pit, as discussed in Revelation 9:11.

Clearly the mighty angels are supernatural because they are from Heaven, but recall from Revelation 1:20that the Greek word for “angel” simply means “messenger.” In addition, Christ is clearly the “Messenger of the covenant.” Like in the Greek, the Hebrew word for “angel” is the same as “messenger”:

Malachi 3:1 – “Behold, I send My messenger, and he will prepare the way before Me. And the Lord, whom you seek, will suddenly come to His temple, even the Messenger of the covenant, in whom you delight. Behold, He is coming,” says the LORD of hosts.”

The only interpretation that makes sense harmonizing the textual variants – while taking other instances of Christ appearing as an angel both pre-incarnate and in glory into account, in addition to the mighty angel looking and acting like Christ as we will see in the next few sections – is that the mighty angel is Christ. It is interesting that John does not describe to us what the other mighty angels in Revelation looked like, which may suggest this mighty angel is more important that the other mighty angels.

As we continue and consider the symbolic meaning behind John’s description of the mighty angel, keep in mind that John was given the Revelation to “reveal” who Jesus Christ is and show us future events; not just give us vague fanciful imagery as some believe:

Revelation 1:1-2 – The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him to show His servants – things which must shortly take place. And He sent and signified it by His angel to His servant John, who bore witness to the word of God, and to the testimony of Jesus Christ, to all things that he saw.

John sees the mighty angel come down to the earth from Heaven. In the next section, this angel symbolically claims ownership of the earth, which supports the notion that the mighty angel is Christ. As we will see in the next chapter, Jesus formally takes possession of the earth at the sounding of the last Trumpet judgment which includes the “Coronation of the King” and the Bowl judgments. After the last of the judgments Christ returns physically to earth to rule and reign:

Revelation 11:15 – Then the seventh angel sounded: And there were loud voices in heaven, saying, “The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever!”

The mighty angel is clothed with a cloud. The Lord also appears in a cloud, which represents His glory:

Exodus 16:10 – Now it came to pass, as Aaron spoke to the whole congregation of the children of Israel, that they looked toward the wilderness, and behold, the glory of the LORD appeared in the cloud.

Exodus 19:9 – And the LORD said to Moses, “Behold, I come to you in the thick cloud, that the people may hear when I speak with you, and believe you forever.” So Moses told the words of the people to the LORD.

Exodus 40:34-38 – Then the cloud covered the tabernacle of meeting, and the glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle. And Moses was not able to enter the tabernacle of meeting, because the cloud rested above it, and the glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle. Whenever the cloud was taken up from above the tabernacle, the children of Israel would go onward in all their journeys. But if the cloud was not taken up, then they did not journey till the day that it was taken up. For the cloud of the LORD was above the tabernacle by day, and fire was over it by night, in the sight of all the house of Israel, throughout all their journeys.

Ezekiel 1:4, 28 – Then I looked, and behold, a whirlwind was coming out of the north, a great cloud with raging fire engulfing itself; and brightness was all around it and radiating out of its midst like the color of amber, out of the midst of the fire…. Like the appearance of a rainbow in a cloud on a rainy day, so was the appearance of the brightness all around it. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the LORD. So when I saw it, I fell on my face, and I heard a voice of One speaking.

Psalms 18:11-13 – He made darkness His secret place; His canopy around Him was dark waters and thick clouds of the skies. From the brightness before Him, His thick clouds passed with hailstones and coals of fire. The LORD thundered from heaven, and the Most High uttered His voice, hailstones and coals of fire.

Psalms 97:1-2, 6 – The LORD reigns; let the earth rejoice; let the multitude of isles be glad! Clouds and darkness surround Him; righteousness and justice are the foundation of His throne…. The heavens declare His righteousness, and all the peoples see His glory.

Luke 21:27 – Then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory.

As discussed in Revelation 1:7, Jesus will also return with clouds, which are the armies of Heaven.

Daniel 7:13 – “I was watching in the night visions, and behold, One like the Son of Man, coming with the clouds of heaven! He came to the Ancient of Days, and they brought Him near before Him.”

Revelation 1:7 – Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him, even they who pierced Him. And all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him. Even so, Amen.

Revelation 19:14 – And the armies in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, followed Him on white horses.

Rainbow Halo

Source: Wikipedia

These “clouds,” or the armies of Heaven include the saints (Jude 1:14-15, Zechariah 14:4-5) and the holy angels (Matthew 25:31). So while angels appear as clouds, they are never said to be clothed in clouds like this mighty angel, which further supports the conclusion that this angel clothed in a cloud is the Lord Jesus Christ.

The mighty angel has a rainbow on his head, like a halo that can appear around the sun, shown to the right. As discussed in Revelation 4:3, the rainbow is a sign of the covenant that God made with the earth, that He would never destroy all flesh with a flood again:

Genesis 9:13-17 – “I set My rainbow in the cloud, and it shall be for the sign of the covenant between Me and the earth. It shall be, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the rainbow shall be seen in the cloud; and I will remember My covenant which is between Me and you and every living creature of all flesh; the waters shall never again become a flood to destroy all flesh. The rainbow shall be in the cloud, and I will look on it to remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth.” And God said to Noah, “This is the sign of the covenant which I have established between Me and all flesh that is on the earth.”

The only other time we see a rainbow in Scripture is around the throne of God:

Ezekiel 1:26-28 – And above the firmament over their heads was the likeness of a throne, in appearance like a sapphire stone; on the likeness of the throne was a likeness with the appearance of a man high above it. Also from the appearance of His waist and upward I saw, as it were, the color of amber with the appearance of fire all around within it; and from the appearance of His waist and downward I saw, as it were, the appearance of fire with brightness all around. Like the appearance of a rainbow in a cloud on a rainy day, so was the appearance of the brightness all around it. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the LORD. So when I saw it, I fell on my face, and I heard a voice of One speaking.

Revelation 4:2-3 – Immediately I was in the Spirit; and behold, a throne set in heaven, and One sat on the throne. And He who sat there was like a jasper and a sardius stone in appearance; and there was a rainbow around the throne, in appearance like an emerald.

The throne is sapphire, which signifies judgment, as discussed in Revelation 4:3. The rainbow shows that judgment from the throne of God cannot come by a global flood because of the covenant He made with Noah:

Isaiah 54:9-10 – “For this is like the waters of Noah to Me; for as I have sworn that the waters of Noah would no longer cover the earth, so have I sworn that I would not be angry with you, nor rebuke you. For the mountains shall depart and the hills be removed, but My kindness shall not depart from you, nor shall My covenant of peace be removed,” Says the LORD, who has mercy on you.

God will keep His promise not to flood the earth in global judgment; instead He will pour out His Bowl judgments on the earth, which include loathsome sores, blood, fire, darkness, demonic deception, and tectonic upheaval (Revelation 16). This global judgment must come because the inhabitants of the earth broke the everlasting covenant, of which Christ is the “angel,” or messenger:

Isaiah 24:1-6 – Behold, the LORD makes the earth empty and makes it waste, distorts its surface and scatters abroad its inhabitants. And it shall be: As with the people, so with the priest; as with the servant, so with his master; as with the maid, so with her mistress; as with the buyer, so with the seller; as with the lender, so with the borrower; as with the creditor, so with the debtor. The land shall be entirely emptied and utterly plundered, for the LORD has spoken this word. The earth mourns and fades away, the world languishes and fades away; the haughty people of the earth languish. The earth is also defiled under its inhabitants, because they have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinance, broken the everlasting covenant. Therefore the curse has devoured the earth, and those who dwell in it are desolate. Therefore the inhabitants of the earth are burned, and few men are left.

Malachi 3:1-5 – “Behold, I send My messenger, and he will prepare the way before Me. And the Lord, whom you seek, will suddenly come to His temple, even the Messenger of the covenant, in whom you delight. Behold, He is coming,” Says the LORD of hosts. “But who can endure the day of His coming? And who can stand when He appears? For He is like a refiner’s fire and like launderers’ soap. He will sit as a refiner and a purifier of silver; He will purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer to the LORD an offering in righteousness. “Then the offering of Judah and Jerusalem will be pleasant to the LORD, as in the days of old, as in former years. And I will come near you for judgment; I will be a swift witness against sorcerers, against adulterers, against perjurers, against those who exploit wage earners and widows and orphans, and against those who turn away an alien – because they do not fear Me,” says the LORD of hosts.

There are only two other times Scripture describes a face shining “like the sun,” and both describe the Lord:

Matthew 17:1-3 – Now after six days Jesus took Peter, James, and John his brother, led them up on a high mountain by themselves; and He was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and His clothes became as white as the light. And behold, Moses and Elijah appeared to them, talking with Him.

Revelation 1:16 – He had in His right hand seven stars, out of His mouth went a sharp two-edged sword, and His countenance was like the sun shining in its strength.

Similarly, Daniel and Ezekiel describe the Lord’s face like lightning and amber with fire:

Daniel 10:6 – His body was like beryl, his face like the appearance of lightning, his eyes like torches of fire, his arms and feet like burnished bronze in color, and the sound of his words like the voice of a multitude.

Ezekiel 1:27 – Also from the appearance of His waist and upward I saw, as it were, the color of amber with the appearance of fire all around within it; and from the appearance of His waist and downward I saw, as it were, the appearance of fire with brightness all around.

As discussed in Revelation 1:16, the bright countenance like the sun is also indicative of the Lord’s glory like the cloud. Those who physically stand in the Lord’s glory also exhibit a bright countenance:

Exodus 34:29-30 – Now it was so, when Moses came down from Mount Sinai (and the two tablets of the Testimony were in Moses’ hand when he came down from the mountain), that Moses did not know that the skin of his face shone while he talked with Him. So when Aaron and all the children of Israel saw Moses, behold, the skin of his face shone, and they were afraid to come near him.

Luke 2:8-9 – Now there were in the same country shepherds living out in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. And behold, an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were greatly afraid.

Matthew 28:2-3 – And behold, there was a great earthquake; for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat on it. His countenance was like lightning, and his clothing as white as snow.

John tells us the mighty angel had feet like pillars of fire. This imagery takes us back to the Exodus, where the glory of the Lord appeared as a pillar of fire at night and a cloud by day:

Numbers 14:13-14 – And Moses said to the LORD: “Then the Egyptians will hear it, for by Your might You brought these people up from among them, and they will tell it to the inhabitants of this land. They have heard that You, LORD, are among these people; that You, LORD, are seen face to face and Your cloud stands above them, and You go before them in a pillar of cloud by day and in a pillar of fire by night.”

As discussed in Revelation 3:12, pillars are the supporting beams or poles that help support a structure, such as a temple (Judges 16:26). The two pillars in the temple of God were bronze (1 Kings 7:16) and John describes the Lord’s feet as being bronze, which symbolizes purification, strength, and judgment (Revelation 1:15):

Revelation 1:15 – His feet were like fine brass, as if refined in a furnace, and His voice as the sound of many waters.

Daniel 10:6 – His body was like beryl, his face like the appearance of lightning, his eyes like torches of fire, his arms and feet like burnished bronze in color, and the sound of his words like the voice of a multitude.

Bronze purified in a furnace glows red-hot like a fire. Ezekiel describes the Lord’s legs and feet as fire, like mighty angel’s feet:

Ezekiel 1:27 – Also from the appearance of His waist and upward I saw, as it were, the color of amber with the appearance of fire all around within it; and from the appearance of His waist and downward I saw, as it were, the appearance of fire with brightness all around.

As we will see in the next section, the mighty angel puts his feet on the earth and the sea. Putting something under one’s feet shows subjection. This means the mighty angel puts the earth and sea under his dominion. This only makes sense if the mighty angel is Christ:

1 Corinthians 15:24-28 – Then comes the end, when He delivers the kingdom to God the Father, when He puts an end to all rule and all authority and power. For He must reign till He has put all enemies under His feet. The last enemy that will be destroyed is death. For “He has put all things under his feet.” But when He says “all things are put under Him,” it is evident that He who put all things under Him is excepted. Now when all things are made subject to Him, then the Son Himself will also be subject to Him who put all things under Him, that God may be all in all.

Hebrews 2:8 – “You have put all things in subjection under his feet.” For in that He put all in subjection under him, He left nothing that is not put under him. But now we do not yet see all things put under him.

Therefore, the mighty angel’s fiery feet, if they are the Lord’s bronze feet, show He will subject everything under His feet through judgment when He returns in glory, because fiery bronze symbolizes purification through the refining fire. Indeed, the Lord will return in fiery judgment:

Malachi 3:2 – “But who can endure the day of His coming? And who can stand when He appears? For He is like a refiner’s fire and like launderers’ soap.”

Malachi 4:1 – “For behold, the day is coming, burning like an oven, and all the proud, yes, all who do wickedly will be stubble. And the day which is coming shall burn them up,” Says the LORD of hosts, “That will leave them neither root nor branch. But to you who fear My name the Sun of Righteousness shall arise with healing in His wings; and you shall go out and grow fat like stall-fed calves. You shall trample the wicked, for they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet on the day that I do this,” Says the LORD of hosts.

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IMPORTANT
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.

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