Revelation Chapter 7 – Servants of God

“After this, I saw four angels standing at the four corners of the earth, holding back the four winds of the earth, so that no wind would blow on the land, on the sea or on any tree. I saw another angel coming up from the east with a seal from the living God, and he shouted to the four angels who had been given power to harm the land and the sea, “Do not harm the land or the sea or the trees until we have sealed the servants of our God on their foreheads!” I heard how many were sealed — 144,000 from every tribe of the people of Isra’el: From the tribe of Y’hudah, 12,000 were sealed, from the tribe of Re’uven, 12,000; from the tribe of Gad, 12,000; from the tribe of Asher, 12,000; from the tribe of Naftali, 12,000; from the tribe of M’nasheh, 12,000; from the tribe of Shim’on, 12,000; from the tribe of Levi, 12,000; from the tribe of Yissakhar, 12,000; from the tribe of Z’vulun, 12,000; from the tribe of Yosef, 12,000; from the tribe of Binyamin, 12,000” (Revelation 7:1-8).

After ‘the Lamb’ opens the sixth seal, there is an interlude before opening the seventh seal. Angels standing at the four corners of the earth hold back the four winds so that no wind (ruach) blows upon the land (eretz). The Hebrew word kanaph is translated into ‘four corners’ and means ‘to the extremity’ and ‘wings.’ These angels or messengers of Elohim stand at the ‘extremities of the earth’ or ‘as far as their wings ‘can go’ and hold back the four winds.

It is important to understand that prophetic events described in Revelation are not always linear, but happen at the same time with more detailed descriptions being given of events. Each of the following Scriptures include the four winds and from the events, it seems plausible that these events happen concurrently.

“Adonai-Tzva’ot says: ‘I will break ‘Eilam’s bow, the mainstay of their might. I will bring against ‘Eilam the four winds from the four quarters of the sky and scatter them to all those winds” (Jeremiah 49:35-36).

The four winds according to the prophet Jeremiah are the winds of war. The four winds will come against Eilam and scatter its people into those winds. The ancient name Eilam is the modern Iran. For a moment after the opening of the sixth seal, the ‘four winds’ of war and judgment will be held back.

“Next he said to me, “Prophesy to the breath! Prophesy, human being! Say to the breath that Adonai Elohim says, ‘Come from the four winds, breath; and breathe on these slain, so that they can live.’ So I prophesied as ordered, and the breath came into them, and they were alive! They stood up on their feet, a huge army!” (Ezekiel 37:9-10).

The ‘four winds’ according to the prophet Ezekiel bring forth the breath of life that raise the dead to life. In the moment after the opening of the sixth seal, the breath of life will enter dry bones preparing a massive army.

“I had a vision at night; I saw there before me the four winds of the sky breaking out over the great sea, and four huge animals came up out of the sea, each different from the others” (Daniel 7:2-3).

The prophet Daniel has a vision of the ‘four winds’ breaking out over the sea. In the moment following the sixth seal, four beasts will appear out of the nations. One, a lion with eagle’s wings, will stand on two legs and be given a human heart though not human, one like a bear gnawing on three ribs will be told to devour the flesh of humans, one like a leopard with bird’s wings and four heads will rule over humanity, and the last with iron teeth and 10 horns will crush whatever opposition remains.

“Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, all the tribes of the Land will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with tremendous power and glory. He will send out his angels with a great shofar; and they will gather together his chosen people from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other” (Matthew 24:30-31).

When Yeshua explained the signs before his return, he used the ‘four winds’ to reveal the ‘extremity’ of the places from where his chosen people would be gathered. In the moment following the opening of the sixth seal along with a great shofar blast, the chosen of Yeshua will be gathered from one end of heaven to the other.

In that moment when the ‘four winds’ of judgement are held back, the dead are raised, the chosen are gathered, and the demonic forces are prepared. A stillness will cover the land, the sea and the trees.

Another angel comes up from the ‘east.’ In the Hebrew the phrase is ‘to the east of the sun.’ The same phrase is translated in Psalm 113:3 as ‘sunrise.’

This messenger that ‘rises with the sun’ like the dawning of a ‘new day’ has the seal of Elohim. This messenger tells the other angels to ‘Wait!’ They are not to harm, injure or wound the sea and the trees until the servants of Elohim are sealed. The Hebrew word for ‘servant’ is avar which means ‘bondsman’. It comes from the word avodah which means ‘worker’ or ‘laborer.’ Those who are going to be sealed will be the ‘laborers’ for Elohim, they will be bound to Him in the time to follow the sixth seal.

The Seal of Elohim Himself

Once again a ‘seal’ is used to show the authenticity of Ehyeh Asher Ehyeh Himself. It is His seal that will ‘set apart’ those workers who He marks. The Hebrew word for ‘seal’ is chatham and is used for the word ‘sign’ of circumcision to ‘mark’ the covenant Elohim made with Avraham. In Romans 4:11, this ‘seal of righteousness’ was given to him because of his faith before he was circumcised in the flesh. The ‘seal’ of Elohim is a covenant mark and when it is established, it becomes ‘law’ and cannot be revoked or changed.

Revelation chapter 14 gives a little more insight into those who are sealed with a covenant mark: 144,000 or 12,000 from each Tribe of Israel: Y’hudah, Reuben Gad, Asher, Naphtali, Manasseh, Simeon, Levi, Issachar, Zebulun, Joseph and Benjamin.

In Hebrew they are B’nei Isra’el. B’nei in a general sense was used for the ‘children of Noach,’ but came to mean ‘sons.’ Thus this phrase can be translated as ‘sons’ and/or ‘sons and daughters.’

The 144,000 B’nei Isra’el will be redeemed as firstfruits for Elohim and the Lamb, Yeshua. They are not redeemed from the world, but from the nation of Isra’el. Firstfruits is an allusion to the Feast of Firstfruits that will be followed by a great harvest. Whether these firstfruits are those who are raised from the dust to become a great army is not specifically stated, but they are firstfruits for service to yod hey vav hey and Yeshua.

“Isra’el is set aside for Adonai, the firstfruits of his harvest; all who devour him [Isra’el) will incur guilt; evil will befall them,” says Adonai” (Jeremiah 2:3).

“But the fact is that the Messiah has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have died” (1 Corinthians 15:20).

These B’nei Isra’el have never lied. They have no fault, no blemish on their lives, and are considered blameless or tamim. The statement that they did not have sexual relations with women suggests the B’nei Isra’el are only men. In this day and age of sexual immorality, finding one or two men who are sexually pure is remote, but Elohim seals 144,000 Israeli men from the 12 Tribes who are virgins.

“These are the ones who have not been defiled [by relations] with women, for they are celibate. These are the ones who follow the Lamb wherever He goes. These have been purchased and redeemed from among men [of Israel] as the first fruits [sanctified and set apart for special service] for God and the Lamb. No lie was found in their mouth, for they are blameless (spotless, untainted, beyond reproach)” (Revelation 14:4-5, Amplified Bible).

Those who don’t believe the verses mean a literal physical purity suggest it is a spiritual purity and these men never defiled themselves with other religions and/or Christian ideologies and denominations. There are also those who want to include women as part of those sealed. The actual phrase in Hebrew says, they were not redeemed with women taking women out of the equation altogether. Remember, these men are redeemed to follow the Lamb, to battle with him.

According to Torah, women were not included in military actions. In our modern cultures, women in the military has become normalized, but it is not part of Yeshua’s Kingdom culture. Men were the warriors with few exceptions. Though men and women both work for the Kingdom, the battles during the Tribulation are not meant for the faint of heart. The men sealed for the years of Jacob’s Trouble are unique men, born and raised for this very purpose and time.

Just as in the days of King David, men in war remained celibate. Having a mindset of sexual purity, these men will focus solely on being a servant of Elohim. They have not deviated from serving Him and He is their entire life focus. These may be the very men Adonai told Ezekiel to seal. These ‘sealed’ men have not succumbed to the abominations the culture condones nor approve of the behaviors. They grieve over the disgusting practices being allowed in the holy city of Jerusalem.

“Adonai said to him, “Go throughout the city, through all Yerushalayim, and put a mark on the foreheads of the men who are sighing and crying over all the disgusting practices that are being committed in it” (Ezekiel 9:4).

Tribes of Israel

There are many non-Jews who claim to be Isra’el. Though as believers in Yeshua, non-Jews become part of the Olive Tree of Isra’el and join the community of Isra’el, they are not Jewish. Some suggest the ‘sign’ for Isra’el is the Shabbat which is based on Ezekiel 20:20, “and keep my shabbats holy; and they will be a sign between me and you, so that you will know that I am Adonai your God.” Though this may be a possibility, this ‘sign’ is for all Isra’el, not just men.

The ‘seal’ for Avraham and his descendants was ‘circumcision,’ and one of the ‘signs’ for a man to be of Israeli descent is ‘circumcision.’ It stands to reason that the 144,000 men who are sealed are actual descendants of Avraham, Yitzak, and Ya’kov.

There isn’t much description about the 144,000 in Revelation 7. They are just men sealed from the 12 Tribes of Isra’el. As they walk with the Lamb through the days of tribulation, they may be transformed from just men of Isra’el into redemeed men of Isra’el and become the firstfruits of those redeemed from the earth singing a new song.

Chapter 7 – White Robes

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