Revelation 10 – A Mighty Angel and a Little Book
Chapters ten through fourteen are parenthetical chapters of scenes in heaven and filling in details of the tribulation period on the earth. In chapter ten John sees a mighty angel clothed with a cloud and a rainbow upon his head, his face as bright as the sun, with his feet upon the sea and the earth. He has a little book in his hand and John is commanded to take it and eat it. When he does it is sweet as honey to his taste but bitter in his belly.
Watch the Message
“And I saw another mighty angel come down from heaven, clothed with a cloud: and a rainbow was upon his head, and his face was as it were the sun, and his feet as pillars of fire: And he had in his hand a little book open: and he set his right foot upon the sea, and his left foot on the earth, And cried with a loud voice, as when a lion roareth: and when he had cried, seven thunders uttered their voices. And when the seven thunders had uttered their voices, I was about to write: and I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Seal up those things which the seven thunders uttered, and write them not. And the angel which I saw stand upon the sea and upon the earth lifted up his hand to heaven, And sware by Him that liveth for ever and ever, Who created heaven, and the things that therein are, and the earth, and the things that therein are, and the sea, and the things which are therein, that there should be time no longer: But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as He hath declared to His servants the prophets. And the voice which I heard from heaven spake unto me again, and said, Go and take the little book which is open in the hand of the angel which standeth upon the sea and upon the earth. And I went unto the angel, and said unto him, Give me the little book. And he said unto me, Take it, and eat it up; and it shall make thy belly bitter, but it shall be in thy mouth sweet as honey. And I took the little book out of the angel’s hand, and ate it up; and it was in my mouth sweet as honey: and as soon as I had eaten it, my belly was bitter. And he said unto me, Thou must prophesy again before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings.”
Another Mighty Angel
Notice the description of this angel. What a sight it must have been to behold. He is a mighty angel, clothed with a cloud, a rainbow on his head, his face was as bright as the sun, his feet as pillars of fire, a little book in his hand, his right foot on the sea, his left foot on the earth, and his voice was as a roaring lion.
Revelation 10:1-3 – “And I saw another mighty angel come down from heaven, clothed with a cloud: and a rainbow was upon his head, and his face was as it were the sun, and his feet as pillars of fire: And he had in his hand a little book open: and he set his right foot upon the sea, and his left foot on the earth, And cried with a loud voice, as when a lion roareth: and when he had cried, seven thunders uttered their voices.”
- This angel is mighty. All angels are mighty and strong but there are apparently some that are exceptionally strong. Some have greater strength and authority such as archangels like Gabriel and Michael. They all were created to do the Lord’s bidding, see to it that His Word is fulfilled, and minister to and on behalf of the saints. They will play a major part in the spiritual battle that takes place during the tribulation period. If we could but see into the spiritual realm we’d be amazed.
Hebrews 1:7 and 14 – “And of the angels He saith, Who maketh His angels spirits, and His ministers a flame of fire. Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation?”
Psalms 103:20 – “Bless the Lord, ye His angels, that excel in strength, that do His commandments, hearkening unto the voice of His Word.”
Joel 2:11 – “The Lord shall utter His voice before His army: for His camp is very great: for he is strong that executeth His word: for the day of the Lord is great and very terrible; and who can abide it?”
2 Kings 6:15-16 – “When the servant of the man of God was risen early, and gone forth, behold, an host compassed the city both with horses and chariots. And his servant said unto him, Alas, my master! how shall we do? And he answered, Fear not: for they that be with us are more than they that be with them. And Elisha prayed, and said, Lord, I pray thee, open his eyes, that he may see. And the Lord opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw: and, behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha.”
- He was Clothed with a cloud, a rainbow was about his head, his face bright as the sun, a little book in his hand, his right foot on the sea, and his left foot on the earth. Some have taken this to be Jesus Himself because it has some similarities to His description in chapter one with some variations. Here the description of the angel’s voice is as a lion and there it’s as the sound of many waters. Nonetheless his voice is powerful.
Revelation 1:13-16 – “In the midst of the seven candlesticks one like unto the Son of man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle. His head and His hairs were white like wool, as white as snow; and His eyes were as a flame of fire; And His feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and His voice as the sound of many waters. And He had in His right hand seven stars: and out of His mouth went a sharp two-edged sword: and His countenance was as the sun shineth in His strength.”
Many think this is not Jesus because this angel swears “by Him that liveth for ever and ever, Who created heaven, and the things that therein are, and the earth, and the things that therein are, and the sea, and the things which are therein” (Revelation 10:6). Whether it’s Jesus or a created angelic being, only God knows for sure. He has a little book in his hand which no doubt symbolizes the Word of God. His right foot on the sea and his left foot on the earth portrays his authority over the earth, the events that are about to take place, and that the Lord is now reasserting His dominion over a Christ rejecting world.
Dominion is about to be completely restored! In actuality, at the cross, Jesus paid for dominion to be restored but it’s up to us to enforce it over the situations and circumstances of this life. No, it will not be totally brought into subjection to Christ and His people until the second coming. However, we can even now begin to assert Jesus’ dominion over this world and the powers of darkness by faith.
Hebrews 2:5-10 – “For unto the angels hath He not put in subjection the world to come, whereof we speak. But one in a certain place testified, saying, What is man, that thou art mindful of him? or the son of man that thou visitest him? Thou madest him a little lower than the angels; Thou crownedst him with glory and honour, and didst set him over the works of Thy hands: Thou hast put all things in subjection under his feet. For in that He put all in subjection under him, He left nothing that is not put under him. But now we see not yet all things put under him. But we see Jesus, Who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that He by the grace of God should taste death for every man. For it became Him, for Whom are all things, and by Whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.”
Deuteronomy 11:24 – “Every place whereon the soles of your feet shall tread shall be yours.”
Joshua 1:3 and 5 – “Every place that the sole of your foot shall tread upon, that have I given unto you. There shall not any man be able to stand before thee all the days of thy life.”
Luke 10:18-19 – “And He said unto them, I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven. Behold, I give unto you power (authority) to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.”
Ephesians 1:19-23 and 2:6 – “What is the exceeding greatness of His power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of His mighty power, Which He wrought in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead, and set Him at His own right hand in the heavenly places, Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come: And hath put all things under His feet, and gave Him to be the head over all things to the church, Which is His body, the fulness of Him that filleth all in all. And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus.”
Romans 16:20 – “And the God of peace shall bruise Satan under your feet shortly.”
Luke 19:13 – “Occupy till I come.”
The Seven Thunders Utter Their Voiced
Revelation 10:4 – “And when the seven thunders had uttered their voices, I was about to write: and I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Seal up those things which the seven thunders uttered, and write them not.”
John had been told earlier in his revelation to write down all that he saw so believers would have this great book that reveals end time events. “Write the things which thou hast seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter” (Revelation 1:19). This was to declare past, present, and future events. Because of this he was immediately about to write down what he heard. Only here he’s told not to. Daniel, likewise was told to seal up what he had written until the time of the end. John here is forbidden to even write what he heard. Some things are not for our ears. Though John did hear.
Daniel 12:4 – “But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end.”
Amos 3:7 – “Surely the Lord God will do nothing, but He revealeth His secret unto His servants the prophets.”
Deuteronomy 29:29 – “The secret things belong unto the Lord our God: but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children for ever.”
The Angel Swears Time Will be No Longer
Revelation 10:5-6 – “And the angel which I saw stand upon the sea and upon the earth lifted up his hand to heaven, And sware by Him that liveth for ever and ever, Who created heaven, and the things that therein are, and the earth, and the things that therein are, and the sea, and the things which are therein, that there should be time no longer.”
Johns sees this mighty angel lift up his hand to heaven and sear by Him Who lives forever and ever, the creator of the heavens and earth and all that therein is. The Lord God Almighty! For this angel to take such an oath reveals the seriousness of it. This oath will be fulfilled and brought to fruition. What is the oath? “That there should be time no longer.” Does this mean that time ceases to exits at this point? No, it simply means there will be no more delay in the judgments that are to follow. The seventh trumpet will sound forthwith (Revelation 11:15), the vials or bowls of God’s wrath will be poured out on the world (Revelation 15-16), and the second coming of Jesus and His reign upon the earth will be forthcoming (Revelation 19:11-21).
Revelation 10:7 – “But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as He hath declared to His servants the prophets.”
John Takes the Little Book and Eats it Up
Revelation 10:8-10 – “And the voice which I heard from heaven spake unto me again, and said, Go and take the little book which is open in the hand of the angel which standeth upon the sea and upon the earth. And I went unto the angel, and said unto him, Give me the little book. And he said unto me, Take it, and eat it up; and it shall make thy belly bitter, but it shall be in thy mouth sweet as honey. And I took the little book out of the angel’s hand, and ate it up; and it was in my mouth sweet as honey: and as soon as I had eaten it, my belly was bitter.”
This is, without a doubt, symbolic of the Word of God. God’s Word is sweet as honey to the taste but it’s often bitter in the belly. The Word is always tasty but it can be bitter when it hits the belly because of the judgments it often portrays. Jeremiah was called the weeping prophet as he foretold of the judgment that was coming and the people refusing to heed the warning and repent.
Psalms 119:103 – “How sweet are Thy Words unto my taste! yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth!”
Jeremiah 15:16 – “Thy Words were found, and I did eat them; and Thy Word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart: for I am called by Thy name, O Lord God of hosts.”
Job 23:12 – “Neither have I gone back from the commandment of His lips; I have esteemed the Words of His mouth more than my necessary food.”
Matthew 4:4 – “But He answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.”
Thou Must Yet Prophecy Before Many Peoples
Revelation 10:11 – “And he said unto me, Thou must prophesy again before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings.”
John had been banished to the Isle of Patmos with seemingly no hope of leaving. This gives him hope that God was not through with him. The devil can’t have us until God is finished with us. God always extends hope to His prophets even in the most dire situations.
Romans 15:13 – “Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost.”
This promise comes after John’s eating of the little book. All prophecy and preaching must come from and out of God’s Word. It’s God’s intention as we minister that it’s actually the Word itself flowing out of our mouth to the ears, souls, and spirits of His people. If it’s not coming straight from the Word of God it’s nothing more than fairy tales, the doctrines and philosophies of men, and fables. WE MUST PREACH THE WORD! This is a scathing rebuke and indictment of the watered down preaching and Milk Toast Preachers of our generation.
2 Timothy 4:1-4 – “I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, Who shall judge the quick and the dead at His appearing and His kingdom; Preach the Word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all long suffering and doctrine. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.”