And when he had opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven about the space of half an hour. Revelation 8:1
Be silent, O all flesh, before the Lord: for he is raised up out of his holy habitation. Zech 2:13
Be still before the Lord, all mankind, because he has roused himself from his holy dwelling (niv)
And there was silence in heaven…………………..
I’ve always wondered about this. What was going on in heaven during this silence? Was it fear? Was it trembling? Was it a stillness? And what about the time frame we are given? It always sends my mind and imagination off into every scenario. I’ve decided to search the scripture for some clues to this mystery.
What has sparked this study?…I sense a stillness and silence when I go to the Lord, I don’t know if it’s just me… or if something is going on. I just sense this silence and I’ve sensed it for about two weeks. Its got me wondering- what is going on? It’s not that the Lord isn’t working or speaking, it’s different… it’s like a stillness…as if I was watching a race and I could see disaster ahead, like a cliff that the race car driver couldn’t see and there would be no way to warn him ….. and a silent gasp – stillness in awe/terror- of what is coming. Maybe it’s me? I don’t know, but it has sparked my curiosity further…..so off I go.
If you want to know more, read Zephaniah 1 and Isaiah 24 (see below) I believe both of these chapters have within them the keys to this time and to this mystery of Revelation 8:1. I’m focusing on the “silent” part, haven’t really dove into the time frame study.
It seems, according to scripture, there is a silence before destruction. We see silence as reverence, a silencing of our enemies, a way to act when we are angry, yet over and over again we see a silence both before destruction and a silence after the desolation. I imagine all the host of heavens still –gasping to breath- silence as they watch the Lord God Almighty rise up from His throne. What a terrifying moment.
Here are some verses that have stirred the Fear of the Lord within me as I went about this study:
And I will destroy those who used to worship me but now no longer do. They no longer ask for the LORD’s guidance or seek my blessings. I will destroy my own people, because they refuse to change their evil ways. The earth suffers for the sins of its people, for they have twisted God’s instructions,violated his laws, and broken his everlasting covenant. Therefore, a curse consumes the earth. Its people must pay the price for their sin.They are destroyed by fire, and only a few are left alive. The grapevines waste away, and there is no new wine. All the merrymakers sigh and mourn. The cheerful sound of tambourines is stilled; the happy cries of celebration are heard no more. The melodious chords of the harp are silent. Stand in silence in the presence of the Sovereign LORD, for the awesome day of the LORD’s judgment is near. The LORD has prepared his people for a great slaughter and has chosen their executioners.” Stand in silence in the presence of the Sovereign Lord, for the awesome day of the Lord’s judgment is near. 2 “I will sweep away everything from the face of the earth,” says the Lord. “I will sweep away people and animals alike. I will sweep away the birds of the sky and the fish in the sea.I will reduce the wicked to heaps of rubble, and I will wipe humanity from the face of the earth,” says the Lord. Be silent, O all flesh, before the Lord: for he is raised up out of his holy habitation. You quieted the raging oceans with their pounding waves and silenced the shouting of the nations
Our God approaches, and he is not silent. Fire devours everything in his way, and a great storm rages around himPsalm 65:7 Psalm 50:3 Zech 2;13 Zephaniah 1:6 Jer 15:7 Is 24,Zephaniah 1:7
Could the Lord be about to rise up? I heard these words a few months ago- Weep O Ye People, fall down before Him in Reverent Fear- I am silent now in a frozen state, almost wondering what is ahead.
Silence in the Scripture:
- In wonder-( what was about to happen) Gen 24:21
- In Reverence and awe of God’s Power Lev 10:3, Ps 8:2, 65:7 ,Micah 7:16 Hab 2:20
- In waiting to see what was about to happen 1 Kings 18:21
- During Judgement: The earth trembles and stands silent as the Lord sentences His enemies Ps 76:8
- In obedience , when the people were told to be silent as their enemies blasphemed their God and terrified them with words 2 Kings 18;36, Is 36:31
- In dreadful fear of the unknown Job 4:16
- In sorrow and repentance Lam 2:10, 3:28, Ez 16;63
- In emptiness and desolation after destruction Is 27;10, 47:5, Jer 25:10
- in Awe Acts 21;40, Acts 22:2
- Sound of the enemy as they approach-before war Jer 46;22
- Something we hope our accusers would do- just be quiet Job 13:5,13
- In reverence of an honored person or silent awestruck at a horrific site Job 29;9, 21(When people were silenced before Job)
- In anger -A way to control yourself when you’re angry- be silent overnight and think about it Ps 4:4, 39:2,
- In waiting on the Lord- A way to stand against your enemies, allowing God to take over Ps 38:13 (Jesus also stood silent before His accusers) waiting and knowing that God was in control Is 53:7, Mt 26:63, 27:12, Mk 14:61, Acts 8:32
- In Sorow and Repentance -Silence in deserved punishment for sins Ps 39:9
- Ps 50:21 “While you did all this, I remained silent, and you thought I didn’t care.” Is 42:14. Is 57;11, Is 64:12
- In mourning for the sins of a nation Is 23:2, Jer 47:5, Lam 1:4
- Before destruction: a silence, stillness before the Lord completely destroys all the earth because a curse consumes the earth for they have twisted and violated God’s Instructions Is 24
- Before Judgment: A silence before the awesome day of the Lord’s judgment- a great slaughter Zeph 1;7 before He sweeps everything away from the earth, Is 41:1, Acts 19:33
- To silence enemies (and wrong teachers)- a benefit for the servants of the Lord Is 54;17, Jer 51:55, Ez 27:32 (city under the sea), Titus 1:11, 1 Peter 2;15
- Disobedient silence of God’s watchmen who don’t warn others Is 56:10, Acts 18:9
- Instructed silence when one should mourn- mourn silently Ez 24;17, Amos 8:3
- In Honor: How we should stand before the Lord hab 2:20, Zeph 1;7
- In destruction: Sound of a city destroyed and deserted Zeph 3:6
- Before the Lord rises up and acts “for he has roused himself from his holy dwelling”- be silent Zech 2:13
- Silence- when you have no more argument left, God’s words silence others (teachers were silenced with Jesus’ words) Matt 22:34, luke 20;26. Acts 21:40, Acts 22:2
- A rebuke to the wind- Be Silent, Be Still! Mk 4;39
- Punishment for disbelief Luke 1:20-22
HEAR THE WORD OF THE LORD:
Genesis 24:21The servant watched her in silence, wondering whether or not the LORD had given him success in his mission.
Leviticus 10:3Then Moses said to Aaron, “This is what the LORD meant when he said, ‘I will display my holiness through those who come near me. I will display my glory before all the people.’” And Aaron was silent.
1 Kings 18:21Then Elijah stood in front of them and said, “How much longer will you waver, hobbling between two opinions? If the LORD is God, follow him! But if Baal is God, then follow him!” But the people were completely silent
2 Kings 18:36But the people were silent and did not utter a word because Hezekiah had commanded them, “Do not answer him.”
Job 4:16The spirit stopped, but I couldn’t see its shape. There was a form before my eyes. In the silence I heard a voice say
Job 13:5If only you could be silent! That’s the wisest thing you could do.,“Be silent now and leave me alone. Let me speak, and I will face the consequences
Job 29:9The princes stood in silence and put their hands over their mouths.
Job 29:21“Everyone listened to my advice. They were silent as they waited for me to speak
Psalm 4:4Don’t sin by letting anger control you. Think about it overnight and remain silent
Psalm 38:13But I am deaf to all their threats. I am silent before them as one who cannot speak
Psalm 50:21While you did all this, I remained silent, and you thought I didn’t care. But now I will rebuke you, listing all my charges against you
Psalm 76:8From heaven you sentenced your enemies; the earth trembled and stood silent before you
Isaiah 23:2Mourn in silence, you people of the coast and you merchants of Sidon. Your traders crossed the sea
Isaiah 24 The earth mourns and dries up,and the crops waste away and wither. Even the greatest people on earth waste away.5 The earth suffers for the sins of its people, for they have twisted God’s instructions,violated his laws, and broken his everlasting covenant. Therefore, a curse consumes the earth. Its people must pay the price for their sin.They are destroyed by fire, and only a few are left alive.7 The grapevines waste away, and there is no new wine. All the merrymakers sigh and mourn.8 The cheerful sound of tambourines is stilled; the happy cries of celebration are heard no more. The melodious chords of the harp are silent.
Isaiah 41:1 “Listen in silence before me, you lands beyond the sea. Bring your strongest arguments. Come now and speak. The court is ready for your case
Isaiah 53:7 He was oppressed and treated harshly, yet he never said a word. He was led like a lamb to the slaughter. And as a sheep is silent before the shearers, he did not open his mouthIsaiah 54:17
But in that coming day no weapon turned against you will succeed. You will silence every voice raised up to accuse you. These benefits are enjoyed by the servants of the LORD; their vindication will come from me. I, the LORD, have spoken
Isaiah 56:10For the leaders of my people— the LORD’s watchmen, his shepherds— are blind and ignorant. They are like silent watchdogs that give no warning when danger comes. They love to lie around, sleeping and dreaming
Jeremiah 46:22Egypt flees, silent as a serpent gliding away. The invading army marches in; they come against her with axes like woodsmen
Ezekiel 27:32As they wail and mourn over you, they sing this sad funeral song: ‘Was there ever such a city as Tyre, now silent at the bottom of the sea
Ezekiel 27:32As they wail and mourn over you, they sing this sad funeral song: ‘Was there ever such a city as Tyre, now silent at the bottom of the sea
Habakkuk 2:20But the LORD is in his holy Temple. Let all the earth be silent before him
Zephaniah 1:7Stand in silence in the presence of the Sovereign LORD, for the awesome day of the LORD’s judgment is near. The LORD has prepared his people for a great slaughter and has chosen their executioners.” Stand in silence in the presence of the Sovereign Lord, for the awesome day of the Lord’s judgment is near.
Zechariah 2:13Be silent before the LORD, all humanity, for he is springing into action from his holy dwelling.”
Matthew 22:34[ The Most Important Commandment ] But when the Pharisees heard that he had silenced the Sadducees with his reply, they met together to question him again
Mark 4:39When Jesus woke up, he rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Silence! Be still!” Suddenly the wind stopped, and there was a great calm
Luke 1:20But now, since you didn’t believe what I said, you will be silent and unable to speak until the child is born. For my words will certainly be fulfilled at the proper time
1 Corinthians 14:28But if no one is present who can interpret, they must be silent in your church meeting and speak in tongues to God privately
1 Corinthians 14:34Women should be silent during the church meetings. It is not proper for them to speak. They should be submissive, just as the law says
Titus 1:11They must be silenced, because they are turning whole families away from the truth by their false teaching. And they do it only for money
1 Peter 2:15It is God’s will that your honorable lives should silence those ignorant people who make foolish accusations against you
Psalm 39:9 I am silent before you; I won’t say a word, for my punishment is from you
Look! The Lord is about to destroy the earth
and make it a vast wasteland.
He devastates the surface of the earth
and scatters the people.
Priests and laypeople,
servants and masters,
maids and mistresses,
buyers and sellers,
lenders and borrowers,
bankers and debtors—none will be spared.
3 The earth will be completely emptied and looted.
The Lord has spoken!
4 The earth mourns and dries up,
and the crops waste away and wither.
Even the greatest people on earth waste away.
5 The earth suffers for the sins of its people,
for they have twisted God’s instructions,
violated his laws,
and broken his everlasting covenant.
6 Therefore, a curse consumes the earth.
Its people must pay the price for their sin.
They are destroyed by fire,
and only a few are left alive.
7 The grapevines waste away,
and there is no new wine.
All the merrymakers sigh and mourn.
8 The cheerful sound of tambourines is stilled;
the happy cries of celebration are heard no more.
The melodious chords of the harp are silent.
9 Gone are the joys of wine and song;
alcoholic drink turns bitter in the mouth.
10 The city writhes in chaos;
every home is locked to keep out intruders.
11 Mobs gather in the streets, crying out for wine.
Joy has turned to gloom.
Gladness has been banished from the land.
12 The city is left in ruins,
its gates battered down.
13 Throughout the earth the story is the same—
only a remnant is left,
like the stray olives left on the tree
or the few grapes left on the vine after harvest.
14 But all who are left shout and sing for joy.
Those in the west praise the Lord’s majesty.
15 In eastern lands, give glory to the Lord.
In the lands beyond the sea, praise the name of the Lord, the God of Israel.
16 We hear songs of praise from the ends of the earth,
songs that give glory to the Righteous One!
But my heart is heavy with grief.
Weep for me, for I wither away.
Deceit still prevails,
and treachery is everywhere.
17 Terror and traps and snares will be your lot,
you people of the earth.
18 Those who flee in terror will fall into a trap,
and those who escape the trap will be caught in a snare.
Destruction falls like rain from the heavens;
the foundations of the earth shake.
19 The earth has broken up.
It has utterly collapsed;
it is violently shaken.
20 The earth staggers like a drunk.
It trembles like a tent in a storm.
It falls and will not rise again,
for the guilt of its rebellion is very heavy.
21 In that day the Lord will punish the gods in the heavens
and the proud rulers of the nations on earth.
22 They will be rounded up and put in prison.
They will be shut up in prison
and will finally be punished.
23 Then the glory of the moon will wane,
and the brightness of the sun will fade,
for the Lord of Heaven’s Armies will rule on Mount Zion.
He will rule in great glory in Jerusalem,
in the sight of all the leaders of his people.
1 The Lord gave this message to Zephaniah when Josiah son of Amon was king of Judah. Zephaniah was the son of Cushi, son of Gedaliah, son of Amariah, son of Hezekiah.
“I will sweep away everything
from the face of the earth,” says the Lord.
3 “I will sweep away people and animals alike.
I will sweep away the birds of the sky and the fish in the sea.
I will reduce the wicked to heaps of rubble,[a]
and I will wipe humanity from the face of the earth,” says the Lord.
4 “I will crush Judah and Jerusalem with my fist
and destroy every last trace of their Baal worship.
I will put an end to all the idolatrous priests,
so that even the memory of them will disappear.
5 For they go up to their roofs
and bow down to the sun, moon, and stars.
They claim to follow the Lord,
but then they worship Molech, too.
6 And I will destroy those who used to worship me
but now no longer do.
They no longer ask for the Lord’s guidance
or seek my blessings.”
7 Stand in silence in the presence of the Sovereign Lord,
for the awesome day of the Lord’s judgment is near.
The Lord has prepared his people for a great slaughter
and has chosen their executioners.[c]
8 “On that day of judgment,”
says the Lord,
“I will punish the leaders and princes of Judah
and all those following pagan customs.
9 Yes, I will punish those who participate in pagan worship ceremonies,
and those who fill their masters’ houses with violence and deceit.
10 “On that day,” says the Lord,
“a cry of alarm will come from the Fish Gate
and echo throughout the New Quarter of the city.[d]
And a great crash will sound from the hills.
11 Wail in sorrow, all you who live in the market area,
for all the merchants and traders will be destroyed.
12 “I will search with lanterns in Jerusalem’s darkest corners
to punish those who sit complacent in their sins.
They think the Lord will do nothing to them,
either good or bad.
13 So their property will be plundered,
their homes will be ransacked.
They will build new homes
but never live in them.
They will plant vineyards
but never drink wine from them.
14 “That terrible day of the Lord is near.
Swiftly it comes—
a day of bitter tears,
a day when even strong men will cry out.
15 It will be a day when the Lord’s anger is poured out—
a day of terrible distress and anguish,
a day of ruin and desolation,
a day of darkness and gloom,
a day of clouds and blackness,
16 a day of trumpet calls and battle cries.
Down go the walled cities
and the strongest battlements!
17 “Because you have sinned against the Lord,
I will make you grope around like the blind.
Your blood will be poured into the dust,
and your bodies will lie rotting on the ground.”
18 Your silver and gold will not save you
on that day of the Lord’s anger.
For the whole land will be devoured
by the fire of his jealousy.
He will make a terrifying end
of all the people on earth.
May His Words be sent out and not return void. May the Lord fill you with all wisdom and understanding , as you walk in obedience and in reverent Awe of our Lord God and His Holy Son Jesus Christ. Grace and Peace of the Lord God and His Son Jesus be with you all.
7 Seals; Revelation 8: A Voice in the Wilderness