The Fifth Sixth and Seventh Seal Judgments

The fifth, sixth and seventh seal judgments in the Tribulation, judgments, end-times, Revelation 6, Revelation 8-9, Revelation 10, Revelation 19

What are the Fifth, Sixth, and Seventh Seal Judgments? Let’s take a look into what scripture has to teach us as we study the Tribulation.

The Four Judgments in the Tribulation
Seven SealsRev. 61st half of the tribulation
Seven TrumpetsRev. 8-92nd half of the tribulation
Seven Thunders (Hidden)Rev. 10After the Trumpets
Seven BowlsRev. 16Before the 2nd Coming
The Four Horsemen are introduced in the first four seals

Horsemen introduced the first four seals, and they explained how their opening affected the earth and earth dwellers. One-fourth of the earth’s population has died (two billion?) from the first four seals. 

The Fifth Seal Rev. 6:9-11

Now, for the fifth seal, Jesus presents it another way. The view changes from earth to heaven and from living earth dwellers to martyrs in heaven.  

More specifically, we see the altar in heaven, and under it are the souls of persecuted martyrs. We don’t see everyone who has died; we see the faithful—those who suffered and died for God’s word during this first half of the tribulation. The language suggests they were slaughtered like livestock. Yet God’s testimony on earth lives on.

These martyrs ask God how long He’ll wait to avenge their murder. Like Abel, their blood calls for justice (Genesis 4:10; Hebrews 12:24). God gives them a white robe, and they were–and are–protected by Jesus’ blood, not from the first death but from the second. God responds by saying He’ll delay His vengeance until their number is complete. 

“These … came out of great tribulation and washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb” (7:14). 

These tribulation martyrs add their voices to a familiar theme: The righteous call for justice. God, why delay?

“O Lord, how long shall I cry, and You will not hear?
Or cry to You, “Violence!” and You will not save?
Why do You make me see wickedness, and cause me to see trouble?”

Habakkuk 1:2-3

Calls for Justice in Revelation

11:17-18The twenty-four elders“Because … the time has come for the dead to be judged and to (reward) those who fear your name, (and) to destroy those who destroy the earth.”
12:10-11A loud voice in heaven“They conquered him (Satan) by the blood of the Lamb … for they did not love their lives to death.”
14:6-7An angel flying high overhead, with the eternal gospel (for) the inhabitants of the earth“Because the hour of his judgment has come.”
14:15An angel of the temple“For the time to reap has come since the harvest of the earth is ripe.” 
14:16The angel of the waters“You (Jesus) are just … “Because you have passed judgment on these things.”
16:6Another voice from heaven“Because they poured out the blood of the saints and the prophets you have given them blood to drink; they deserve it.”
16:7The altar (in heaven)“Yes, Lord God, the Almighty, true and just are your judgments.”
18:4-6Another voice from heaven“For her sins are piled up to heaven … Pay her back … mix a double portion for her.”
18:20The merchants?“Because God has pronounced on her the judgment she passed on you!”
19:1-2A vast multitude in heaven“Because his (God’s) judgments are true and righteous, because he has judged the notorious prostitute who corrupted the earth (because He has) avenged the blood of his servants that was on her hands.”
The Church Age Has Ended

This shows that the Age of Grace, the Church Age, has ended. During this age, while dying, both Jesus and Stephen called to God, not for vengeance but to forgive their murderers because “they know not what they’re doing” Luke 23:34; Acts 7:60).

The Sixth Seal (6:12-14)

Jesus triggers actions when He opens this seal.

  • A huge earthquake (see also Mark 13:8). Probably accompanied by volcanic activity (soot in the sky), turns the sun black and the moon red—possibly for the rest of the tribulation. The prophets predicted these signs would accompany The Day of the Lord (Joel 2:31; Acts 2:20).
  • Stars fall to earth, and the sky splits apart, another ominous sign (also Mark 13:25). This might suggest meteor showers if God uses only known phenomena for this portent. This was predicted by Isaiah, whose words against Edom prefigured this wrath:

“All the host of heaven shall be dissolved, and the heavens shall be rolled together as a book; and all their host shall fall down as the leaf falls from the vine, and as a falling fig from the fig tree” (Isaiah 34:4).

Midpoint Tribulation

These signs may also result from the Archangel Michael’s battle in heaven. The first six seal judgments occur in the first half of the tribulation and bring us right up to its midpoint, and we’re at that point in this vision. At this midpoint, Michael defeats Satan in heaven and throws him to earth (12:7-18):

“The great dragon was cast out, that ancient serpent called the Devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world. He was cast down to the earth, and his angels … with him…. Woe unto the inhabitants of the earth and the sea! For the devil has come down to you in great wrath because he knows that his time is short” (12:7,12).

Second Half of Tribulation is Worse

Satan’s full-time presence on earth is one reason the second half of the tribulation is worse than the first. The heavens rejoice at Satan’s banishment, but they know the world suffers. No doubt phenomena will accompany that event.

Features on earth will share the sympathetic displacements in the starry heaven. Every mountain and island will be moved from its place. This, again, might be a manifestation to those on earth of the heavenly shifts in power. 

John looks to see how the earth dwellers respond. He focuses his attention on the “rich (in attitude).” At first, these plagues didn’t affect them. Instead of repenting, they shelter in caves and rocks in the mountains. 

They know they’re facing God’s wrath. And people are being saved, so salvation is available. But they’re so depraved that they choose destruction instead. This is the first of three times in the tribulation we’re told the earth dwellers wouldn’t repent (9:21; 16:11).

After these judgments, the vision tells us that the great day of His wrath has come. Who can withstand it?”

Note: The judgments have moved the time up to the tribulation midpoint. Time won’t move forward again until the trumpet judgments begin. 

The Seventh Seal (8:1)

“When he opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour” (8:1). 

Chapter 8 of Revelation shows a dramatic pause that comes with the opening of the seventh seal. Sometimes more is communicated by silence. The silence lasted for half an hour. Does Heaven have time? Who knew?

God had the attention of earth dwellers: 

“They said to the mountains and rocks, “Fall on us, and hide us from the face of Him who sits on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb” (6:16).

What could be so crucial … So ominous?

 Jesus calls the second half of the tribulation as a time when,

“Then will be great tribulation, such as has not happened since the beginning of the world until now, no, nor ever shall be” (Matthew 24:21). 

But instead of introducing another individual plague, the seventh seal presents a new series of seven judgments. The vision calls them trumpet judgments. And they’ll be the subject of another article.

“Then I saw the seven angels who stand in the presence of God; seven trumpets were given to them” (8:2).  

We invite you to believe in the name of Jesus. Those who belong to Christ before the Tribulation will be taken to Heaven and will not endure the reign of the Antichrist.

Please watch the Great News video on this page to find out about the free gift of salvation through Jesus Christ.

Read the latest blog about the Tribulation here.