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Sermon #8701

The Trumpets

A Sermon on the Trumpets in Revelation



Sermon Description

What do the trumpets in Revelation stand for? Why are they in the book? How can their teaching be applied today? In this sermon on the trumpets, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones teaches more about these symbols from the book of Revelation. He notes that the trumpets afflict only one-third of their objects. This is contrary to the seals of Revelation, which afflict things as a whole. What do the trumpets represent? They represent what happens to those who persecute God’s people. Many times when people are punished for their sin, it is easy to think that it is all a coincidence, but Dr. Lloyd-Jones reminds the listener that these calamities in Revelation are sent by God Himself. This is important to remember because it is a reminder that God will judge those who have afflicted His people. Just like the plagues of Egypt, the trumpets in Revelation serve as a warning that God sees the trouble of His people and will seek justice for them. Finally, are these trumpets meant to be taken and understood literally? Dr. Lloyd-Jones shows why this is not the case and how to best interpret these symbols of Revelation.

Sermon Breakdown

  1. The book of Revelation consists of 7 parallel visions revealing the history of the church from Christ's first coming to his second coming.
  2. The book can be divided into two main sections: Chapters 1-11 depict the conflict between Christ/the church and men. Chapters 12-22 depict the conflict between Christ/the church and spiritual forces of evil.
  3. Chapters 1-3 show the different spiritual conditions of the church throughout history.
  4. Chapters 4-7 show God's people encountering opposition from the world through the opening of the seals. The seals show that forces are arrayed against God's people because they are God's people.
  5. Chapters 8-11 (the trumpet series) show what happens to those who oppose God and persecute the church. The trumpets are warnings of judgment and punishment on the ungodly.
  6. The trumpet judgments only affect 1/3 of things, showing they are partial judgments, unlike the bowl judgments in Chapter 16 which affect everything.
  7. The trumpet series parallels the plagues on Egypt for oppressing God's people. The plagues were warnings for Pharaoh to let God's people go.
  8. The things that happen to the ungodly (calamities, natural disasters) are ordained by God as punishment for sin and persecution of the church.
  9. The 5th trumpet shows hell being unleashed on earth and restraints being removed. This has happened at times in history and is happening now. God allows greater evil to punish the world.
  10. The 6th trumpet shows terrible wars that wipe out masses of people. These wars are God's punishment on the world.
  11. Despite the judgments of trumpets 1-6, men do not repent (9:20-21). Calamities do not convert people - only the Holy Spirit can do that.
  12. Chapters 10-11 show the church during this time. The little scroll is sweet but bitter, symbolizing the sweetness of the gospel leading to the bitterness of suffering and persecution.
  13. The two witnesses in Chapter 11 are the Old and New Testaments. They prophesy and are eventually killed, symbolizing the suppression of the Scriptures. But they come back to life, showing the Scriptures can never be destroyed.
  14. Chapter 11:15-19 shows the final judgment, as in the 6th seal. The nations are angry but face God's wrath. The temple is opened and the ark is seen.

Great Biblical Doctrines

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.