Summary: Second Bowl Judgment
Revelation 16:3, “Then the second angel poured out his bowl on the sea, and it became like the blood of a corpse. And everything in the sea died.”
The reason why these bowl judgments are so severe as I stated in my introduction to the bowl judgments are that these bowl judgments are culmative meaning that they will happen one after another. This judgment is similar to the first plague in Egypt (Ex 7:20-24), and the second trumpet judgment (8:8-9). This time the effects will be much more intense and the destruction widespread; since the oceans cover 70 percent of the earth’s surface, the effects of this judgment will be worldwide. The pouring then of this bowl on the sea will make the sea like the blood of a corpse.
This will amaze humanity more on the side of horror likely and despair, the oceans will not longer be fluid, but thick, dark and coagulated, like the pool of blood from someone who has been stabbed to death. There are some possibilities for the effects of such a judgment. One of these possibilities is known as red tide. John Phillips comments, “From time to time, off the coast of California and elsewhere, a phenomenon known as “the red tide” occurs. These red tides kill millions of fish and poison those who eat contaminated shellfish. In 1949, one of these red tides hit the coast of Florida. First the water turned yellow, but by midsummer it was thick and viscous with countless billions of dinoflagellates, tiny one-celled organisms. Sixty-mile windrows of stinking fish fouled the beaches. Much marine life was wiped out, even bait used by fishermen died upon the hooks. Eventually the red tide subsided, only to appear again the following year. Eating fish contaminated by the tide produced severe symptoms caused by a potent nerve poison, a few grams of which, distributed aright, could easily kill everyone in the world. An unchecked population explosion of toxic dinoflagellates would kill all the fish in the sea. (Exploring Revelation, rev.ed [Chicago: Moody, 1987; reprint, Neptune, N.J.: Loizeaux, 1991], 190-191).
The stench from the dead, decayed bodies would then cause everything in the sea to have died. Dr. Morris writes: “In this toxic ocean nothing can survive, and soon all the billions of fishes and marine mammals and marine reptiles and the innumerable varieties of marine invertebrates will perish, thus still further poisoning the oceans and contaminating the sea shores of the world. The oceans will have effectively completed their age-long function in the earth’s physical economy, and will die. As God had created every living soul in the waters (Genesis 1:21), so now every living soul died in the sea. (The Revelation Record [Wheaton, Ill.: Tyndale, 1983], 298).”
This bowl judgment will be a reminder to humanity in respect to the fact of God’s establishment of the oceans and all humanity for that matter. God created humanity in the waters and God will then end the waters necessity in the scope of human’s life. Humanity needs water to survive, and God will then strike at that need so that humanity will then see the need to repent, but the reality is that it will not repent and thereby will experience the full pain and suffering in its midst of its life. Yet this will just point out to the fat that the stinking pools of death that is the oceans will be a testimony to God’s sovereign rule over His creation, and to the wickedness of man, and will then reverse the day when God originally gave life to all sea creatures (Gen 1:21).