Q. I blog on (another site) and at times we have heated debates. One of the most debated topics especially of late has been whether or not the first 5 seals of Revelation are open. One argument is that “there is NO mention in Revelation (or elsewhere) that the Seals are Judgments – I think that this is just tradition – and again has no foundation in Scripture. Remember, the seals are being broken one by one by the Lord Jesus, as he opens the Scroll.”
Deep down in my spirit I feel that this is wrong. How do I go to people who think, and feel this way backing it up scripturally that the seals are not open?
A. As far as I can tell the idea that the seals are broken came from a recent book where the author presents a unique view of the seals that I don’t think is consistent with a literal interpretation of Scripture. The use of personal pronouns in the first four seals indicates that they’re brought about by people and are not general conditions. I don’t see any of those people on the world scene yet. And a straight forward reading will lead us to believe that they’re sequential events, not overall conditions.
I also see the Church in Heaven in Rev. 5 and that hasn’t happened yet either. In my opinion, viewing the seals as already opened requires abandoning a literal interpretation of the text and the sequential nature of the Book with the Church age represented in chapters 2-3 the Rapture in 4-5 and the 70th week of Daniel beginning in 6.
As far as the seals not being called judgments, I don’t think the Trumpets and Bowls are specifically called judgments in the text of Revelation either, but no one is suggesting that they aren’t.