Summary: The second, third and fourth horsemen of the Apocalypse
Revelation 6: Riders On The Storm Part II--War, Famine, Death (vs 3-8)
Back To The Future
Today we return to Revelation after studying the Seventy Weeks of Daniel and different aspects of Antichrist for a few weeks. Let's review what we we have learned so far.
It is Jesus Himself Who opens the seven sealed scroll, the title deed to the earth. With each successive seal that Jesus opens, more judgments are brought forth upon the earth.
The first seal brought forth a rider a white horse in Revelation 6:2. This is Antichrist, the super villian of the end times, second only in evil intent after Satan himself. Antichrist will be the "master of intrigue", and will rise to power through the stealth of diplomacy and schemes. This is indicated by the bow without arrows. The white horse and the stephanos crown are both indicative of victory, meaning that he will be named the commander in chief of the world.
We also learned that Antichrist's rise to power will be after the Rapture of the Church, will be during the Tribulation period; he will strike a global peace treaty with Israel and all of the other countries on Planet Earth. He will be slick brainac, a statesman, a great orator, a military mastermind, and an economic mastermind. The world will be under his thumb, and he will rule a configuration of states surrounding the Mediterranean.
We will see and discover more in coming months about Antichrist, such as how he will be the second part of the "unholy trinity", a feeble attempt to copycat the Holy Trinity. The "unholy trinity"will consist of Satan, Antichrist and False Prophet as an evil "substitute" for the Holy Trinity: God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit. Satan always tries to ape God, and although Satan is smart and powerful he is merely a "God wannabe". Now, let's look at the other three horsemen.
The Destroyer of Worlds
I am become death, the destroyer of worlds. J. Robert Oppenheimer
It is said that Oppenheimer quoted a Hindu writer in the above quote, but the truth is yet the same. Oppenheimer was the head scientist in the Manhattan Project in World War II: the making of the first hydrogen bombs. It is said that Oppenheimer said this after the first test detonation in the desert in 1945. Of course, we know the eventual outcome of that test was the death of thousands at Hiroshima and Nagasaki. It did perhaps save many more lives as it cause the end of the war, but at the same time we have been under the nuclear threat ever since. Truly, in a sense, Oppenheimer's "gadgets" have changed the world; there is a constant fear or at least acknowledgement in the minds of all that one day we may see such a device used here in the United States.
In this second of the four "Horsemen of the Apocalypse", the peace in the world obviously did not really last long. The horse here is a "fiery red" color. The color red is known universally in the Bible as the color of blood, of violence and death. What had appeared to the world as "world peace" quickly turns into violence against the world, against those that will not agree to the "one world government" of Antichrist.
Now think for a moment before you get hasty in your thoughts in judging how the world will be fooled, and how you would not be. John MacArthur writes in his commentary on Revelation how this happened to the British:
Adolf Hitler spelled out in detail his plans for conquest in his book Mein Kampf, published more than a decade before World War II began. Yet, incredibly, the Western allies (particularly Britain and France) persisted in believing Hitler's false claim to be a man of peace. They stood idly by as he reoccupied the Rhineland (demilitarized after World War I), thus abrogating the Versailles Treaty, then annexed Austria, the Sudetenland, and Czechoslovakia. Desperate to appease Hitler and avoid war, British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain met with the Nazi dictator at Munich in 1938. Upon his return to England, Chamberlain triumphantly waved a piece of paper (containing a worthless pledge of peace from Hitler) which he claimed guaranteed "peace with honor … peace for our time." When Winston Churchill (one of the few never taken in by Hitler) rose in the House of Commons to declare that England had suffered a total, unmitigated defeat he was shouted down by angry members of Parliament. The deception was nearly universal; almost everyone misread Hitler's intentions. Only after he invaded Poland in September 1939 did the allies finally acknowledge the truth. By then it was too late to avoid the catastrophe of the Second World War.