Introduction to Revelation Chapter 9
This chapter gives an account of the blowing of the fifth and sixth trumpets, and of the effects following upon them. The fifth angel blows his trumpet, and a star falls; the key of the bottomless pit is given to him, which being opened by it, out of it comes smoke to the darkening of the sun and air, and out of the smoke locusts, who have power like scorpions, Revelation 9:1; whose power is restrained from using it to the hurt of the grass, or any green thing or tree, only of those who had not the seal of God in their foreheads; but are permitted, though not to kill men, yet to torment them five months, which is worse than death unto them, Revelation 9:4. The shapes of these locusts, which are said to be like horses, are described by their heads, faces, hair, teeth, breastplates, wings, and tails, and are said to have a king over them, whose name is mentioned, Revelation 9:7. The blowing of this trumpet brings on one of the woes mentioned in Revelation 8:13, and the two other follow, Revelation 9:12. The sixth angel blows his trumpet, and a voice is heard from the horns of the altar, directed to the said angel, ordering him to loose four angels bound in the great river Euphrates, where they were prepared, for a determinate time, to slay the third part of men, and they were loosed accordingly, Revelation 9:13. The number of the army, under these angels, is given, Revelation 9:16, and the horses and horsemen are described; the riders by their breastplates of fire, jacinth, and brimstone; their horses' heads as heads of lions, fire, smoke, and brimstone, issuing out of their mouths, by which the third part of men are killed, Revelation 9:17. The reason of this slaughter is, because they had power both in their mouth and tails, which latter were like serpents, and had heads, with which they did mischief, Revelation 9:19; and yet such who were not killed by these plagues, but escaped, did not repent of their idolatry, murders, sorceries, fornication, and theft, Revelation 9:20.