Revelation Chapter 9:9
Revelation 9:9 – And they had breastplates like breastplates of iron, and the sound of their wings was like the sound of chariots with many horses running into battle.
The Greek word translated “breastplates” is “thorax.” In English, “thorax” is a term used to describe the chest area of animals, but is more widely used to refer to the midsection of certain kinds of insects called arthropods that have legs and wings like locusts.
Breastplates are typically used as armor in battle, but Scripture focuses on a different type of breastplate worn by the high priest called the “breastplate of judgment”:
“Breastplates of iron”: Breastplates were designed to protect the vital organs and sustain the life of the warrior. These creatures are invulnerable.
“Breastplates of iron” symbolizes their invulnerability.
In short, they will be impossible to resist or to destroy. There will be no escaping their worldwide onslaught as there will be nowhere to run or hide from them.
In a metaphor drawn from a battlefield, John compares the sound of their wings to a moving army, noting that it was like the sound of chariots, of many horses rushing to battle. The sound alone will be enough to put fear into the hearts of the unbelievers.
Exodus 28:29-30 – “So Aaron shall bear the names of the sons of Israel on the breastplate of judgment over his heart, when he goes into the holy place, as a memorial before the LORD continually. And you shall put in the breastplate of judgment the Urim and the Thummim, and they shall be over Aaron’s heart when he goes in before the LORD. So Aaron shall bear the judgment of the children of Israel over his heart before the LORD continually.”
The locusts’ breastplates are like those made of iron. Recall from Revelation 2:27, iron symbolizes strength that has the power to destroy:
Psalms 2:7-9 – “I will declare the decree: The LORD has said to Me, ‘You are My Son, today I have begotten You. Ask of Me, and I will give You the nations for Your inheritance, and the ends of the earth for Your possession. You shall break them with a rod of iron; You shall dash them to pieces like a potter’s vessel.'”
Daniel 2:40 – And the fourth kingdom shall be as strong as iron, inasmuch as iron breaks in pieces and shatters everything.
Daniel 7:7 – “After this I saw in the night visions, and behold, a fourth beast, dreadful and terrible, exceedingly strong. It had huge iron teeth; it was devouring, breaking in pieces, and trampling the residue with its feet. It was different from all the beasts that were before it, and it had ten horns.”
Deuteronomy 28:47-48 – “Because you did not serve the LORD your God with joy and gladness of heart, for the abundance of everything, therefore you shall serve your enemies, whom the LORD will send against you, in hunger, in thirst, in nakedness, and in need of everything; and He will put a yoke of iron on your neck until He has destroyed you.”
Therefore, breastplates of iron show that the locusts come in judgment being equipped to destroy, but as discussed in Revelation 9:8 they refrain from devouring their victims, as they are only allowed to torment them. Perhaps in Hades, God allows the tormenting locusts to use their full destructive abilities to destroy the souls and bodies of those detained there:
Matthew 10:28 – And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.
The locust wings are loud like the sound of chariots and horses in battle. The following passages describe these sounds:
Jeremiah 47:3 – At the noise of the stamping hooves of his strong horses, at the rushing of his chariots, at the rumbling of his wheels….
Nahum 3:2 – The noise of a whip and the noise of rattling wheels, of galloping horses, of clattering chariots!
Judges 5:28 – “The mother of Sisera looked through the window, and cried out through the lattice, ‘Why is his chariot so long in coming? Why tarries the clatter of his chariots?'”
It is interesting that the locusts’ wings sound like chariots and horses. In the last section, we discussed the possibility that the locusts from the bottomless pit are cherubim, having characteristics of both humans and creatures. Heavenly cherubim make loud sounds with their wings similar to the “infernal” cherubim:
Ezekiel 10:5 – And the sound of the wings of the cherubim was heard even in the outer court, like the voice of Almighty God when He speaks.
Recall from Zechariah 6:2-5, the heavenly chariots are likely cherubim who are also found riding the spirit horses of judgment in both Zechariah 6 and Revelation 6. This heavenly army appeared during the days of Elisha:
2 Kings 6:17 – And Elisha prayed, and said, “LORD, I pray, open his eyes that he may see.” Then the LORD opened the eyes of the young man, and he saw. And behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.
2 Kings 7:6 – For the LORD had caused the army of the Syrians to hear the noise of chariots and the noise of horses – the noise of a great army; so they said to one another, “Look, the king of Israel has hired against us the kings of the Hittites and the kings of the Egyptians to attack us!”
This heavenly army will also appear in the “Gog and Magog War” of Ezekiel, which is also found in Joel:
Joel 2:4-5 – Their appearance is like the appearance of horses; and like swift steeds, so they run. With a noise like chariots over mountaintops they leap, like the noise of a flaming fire that devours the stubble, like a strong people set in battle array.
Interestingly, this heavenly army appears as both horses going into battle and an army of locusts, much like the tormenting locusts from the bottomless pit:
Joel 2:8-9, 11, 25 – They do not push one another; every one marches in his own column. Though they lunge between the weapons, they are not cut down. They run to and fro in the city, they run on the wall; they climb into the houses, they enter at the windows like a thief…. The LORD gives voice before His army, for His camp is very great; for strong is the One who executes His word. For the day of the LORD is great and very terrible; who can endure it…? So I will restore to you the years that the swarming locust has eaten, the crawling locust, the consuming locust, and the chewing locust, My great army which I sent among you.
The similarities of the locusts in this passage to the tormenting locusts is so striking that many believe Joel is describing the fifth Trumpet judgment and the same locust horde in Revelation. However, a closer look shows that these are two different groups of spiritual locusts God uses in judgment; one army is from Heaven, and the other from the bottomless pit. God uses the heavenly army of locusts to judge the “Gog and Magog” army, and He uses the locusts from the bottomless pit to judge the inhabitants of the earth that do not have the seal of God on their foreheads (Revelation 9:4). Note the other differences below:
|Locusts from bottomless pit||Heavenly army of locusts|
|Torment those without the seal of God
|Removes the northern army coming against Israel (Joel 2:20)|
|Do not touch vegetation (Revelation 9:4)||Devours vegetation with fire (Joel 2:3)|
|Sting like a scorpion, with the power to torment
but not kill (Revelation 9:10)
|A destroying fire burns in front of and behind them (Joel 2:3)|
|Smoke causes darkness before the locusts emerge (Revelation 9:2)||Clouds cause darkness (Joel 2:2) and smoke, blood, and fire come after the northern army’s defeat (Joel 2:30-31)|
|Sun and air darkened (Revelation 9:2)||Sun darkened (Joel 2:31)|
|No earth-shaking mentioned||The earth trembles (Joel 2:10)|
|They have wings to fly (Revelation 9:9)||They leap, run, and climb like horses and men (Joel 2:5-6)|
image courtesy: Revelation- 9-9 bible guide for the new age
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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.