The Book of Revelation

Program # 10 

by: Ronald L. Dart

"And I saw on the right hand of Him that sat on the throne a book," Revelation 5:1, "it was written within and on the backside, and it was sealed with seven seals, {2} And I saw a strong angel proclaiming with a loud voice, "Who is worthy to open the book and to loose the seals thereof?" {3}And they looked all over heaven and looked all over the earth and they couldn't find anyone that was qualified or worthy to open this book, to break the seal, to look inside of it."

It was only when the slain Lamb (Jesus Christ) came on the scene that one was able to open it, and to break the seals. This book, this strange book, this scroll, is the story of the end of the world. That's a sobering thought. I remember the first time I ever heard that expression, I was just a boy growing up and living in the northwestern part of Arkansas. It was in the early years of World War II and everybody was worried a lot back in those days. They watched the news daily. They listened to the radio. They read the papers and it didn't look good, frankly, in those 1942 and 1943 years.

These were pre-television and pre-air conditioning days. On a hot summer evening when supper was over, you didn’t sit around inside the house, you went outside and sat on the porch and maybe swung back and forth in the porch swing or a rocking chair or like us kids, we would sit on the cool concrete of the porch and think about this, or play with that, but in our ears, we were hearing what our elders were talking about, and I remember them saying, that "One of the signs of the end of the world was wars and rumors of wars," and boy, there was plenty of that in 1942 and 1943. I worried a lot about those things in those days. I remember in fact, there was a light in the sky one night and I thought, "This is it, this is it, the Lord's coming back. The end of the world is coming." I think it must've just been the Aurora Borealis, but it sure sobered me up a lot.

Well only the Lamb of God, who is identified in the pages of Revelation as Jesus Christ, was found worthy to break the seals and the look on the book and the only reason He was found worthy is because He was slain. He is the one that was killed and died for our sins and the sins of the world and He is the one who is qualified and it is not merely a matter folks, of looking into the book, that the breaking of the seal, opens up the events. It's actually perhaps the start of the count down toward what people are fond of calling the ‘end of the world.’

It's spooky to think about, isn’t it? That the seven seals in this book are the seven steps up to the end of the world.

I bet you'd like to know, what those seven steps are? Wouldn't you? Well let's watch, while the seals are opened, and let's ask, "What they tell us about the end of the world?"

Jesus Opens the First Seal

Revelation 6 and verse one is where these seals begin to be opened. "I saw when the Lamb opened one of the seals, and I heard, as it were, the noise of thunder, one of the four beasts saying, "Come and see." {2} And I saw, and behold a white horse: and he that sat upon him had a bow; and a crown was given to him: and he went forth conquering, and to conquer."

Well, horses in these ancient times were really war engines. A horse and chariot was the tank of the day, the mobile artillery of the day, and this fellow with a bow was a warrior. He was given a crown, which means he had rulership over something, and one of his big roles was to conquer other nations, other peoples.

What is this? Now this is the famous, the first actually of the famous four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. What are they, what does it mean?

There's another prophecy of Jesus that gives us some clues about this passage in Revelation. I would hate to have to just interpret what I read in Revelation, without some help coming from somewhere else in the Bible.

The Olivet Prophecy

The passage in question is Matthew 24, it's the famous Olivet Prophecy, and I'll show you why it's called that in just a moment.

"Jesus went out, and departed from the Temple." They were walking around alongside the wall of the great Temple of Herod, that he had built on the ruins, actually of Solomon's Temple, "and the disciples came up to Him to show Him all the buildings of the Temple."

They were a bunch of Galileans, they were country boys, they were fishermen, they were back woodsman in our modern terminology and they had not been to the big town all that much, and they were excited and I can see them all standing there, pointing and saying, "Look at this, and look at that!" With a lot of oohing and awing going on.

Jesus said to them in verse 2, "You see all these things, I tell you the truth, there's not going to be left here one stone on top of another, that shall not be thrown down."

Was God’s Temple a Place of Safety?

Now it's hard to imagine the impact to those words on those men. For one thing, this was God's Temple and there was a presumption that because God was in this place, that nothing bad could happen to it, and of course us, being next door to the temple, we ought to be safe, shouldn’t we? We are actually in the temple environs, we ought to be safe here!

But Jesus said, "No, no, the time is coming when there's not going to be one stone here left up on top of another one that shall not be thrown down."

Even the temple of God was not a place of safety, but they went on down across the brook and on up to the Mount of Olives, which was just opposite there, and continuing in verse 3 of Matthew 24, "Jesus sat down and the disciples came to Him privately and said, "Tell us Lord, when shall these things be? When is it going to happen that this building will be destroyed and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the world?"

There is the expression, and I guess that's where it comes from.

End Of The Age

Now there's a small problem with this actually, the language you have in the old King James Authorized Version of the Bible, it says "of the end of the world," but in fact what the Greek expression says is "what shall be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age." It is not that the physical planet is going to disappear, it is not that the world is going to come to an end on these statements of Jesus that He is making here. It is this age in which we are now living, the age of man, the age of man's rule, the age in which a man controls his own destiny, it is going to end.

Now this is what we would we want to know. What is going to happen and how will we know when this is getting close? They asked, "What is the sign of your coming? And of the end of the age?"

Don’t Let Anyone Deceive You

Jesus answered and said in verse 4 of Matthew 24, "Be careful about this, that no one deceives you, {5} For many, not a few, will come in my name, saying, I am Christ, and shall deceive many."

Well, there have been people like that down through history, it's something that repeatedly happens. Someone comes along and declares himself a Messiah, the anointed of God. So there are going to be many people coming in Jesus’ name or who are saying, "I am the Christ," and a lot of people we are told are going to believe them! Now as I said, it's happened before.

But I have to believe that the opening of this first seal in Revelation 6 verse 2, that is the one who comes out on a white horse with a crown and a bow, may himself look very much like Christ.

But how would you know the difference? The only thing you have ever seen about Jesus is the picture on the Sunday School wall of a man with long hair and maybe a beard! Is that what Jesus looks like? Well, everybody knows that's not what Jesus looks like, that was a model that some painter picked out back when and painted a picture of Him and it became very popular and it helps people think about Jesus, they say, and so they put it on the wall and look at it. What's funny about it is, that the Devil himself, could make himself look that way and come on a white horse and some people would say, "Look, there is Jesus!" Because that's what they've seen. It's what they looked at and that's what they believe.

You know, we really ought to be careful about that kind of thing shouldn't we? Because Jesus said in Matthew 24 verse 4, "Be careful that no man deceives you, {5} Because many will come in my name, saying, I am Christ, and shall deceive many. {6} And you shall hear of wars and rumors of wars."

Wars and Rumors of Wars

Ah, there it is, that's what my parents had looked at. They said, "You will hear of wars and rumors of wars and that's a sign of the time of the end."

Jesus said something funny about it though. "He said in verse 6 of Matthew 24, "You shall hear of wars and rumors of war, see that you be not troubled, for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet."

Ut-Oh, I thought I had it. I thought these things meant that the end is here. Well, not quite. These are the things that tell us that the end is coming, and of course as Jesus breaks that first seal, comes the false christ, comes the false prophets, comes a rather significant time on this earth, of deception, and people becoming confused and falling away in some cases, probably even from their own faith.

Then {6} "comes wars and rumors of wars" and I guess again some significant wars, {7} "for nation must rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There shall be famines and pestilences, and earthquakes, in different places. {8} All these are just the beginning."

I don't find that very comforting. You know you see an unparalleled time of false religions and false christs, wars and rumors of wars that will terrify you every night as you go to bed. Famines with people not having enough to eat, with pestilence and disease epidemics breaking out all over the world, and Jesus tells us, "Sorry folks, this is just the beginning. You haven't seen anything yet!" I don't know about you but I find that rather disconcerting.

You Will Be Hated of all Nations for My Namesake

Jesus then went on to say, verse 9 of Matthew 24, "Then they shall deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you, and you will be hated of all nations for my namesake, {10} And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another and shall hate one another."

So there is going to be a time when a great deal of conflict grows, religious conflict, I would have to conclude, because you have these false christs and false prophets coming along.

All of the world's economy is probably going to be something of a wreck by this time, because by the time you get through all these famines and the pestilences and the wars, that's pretty hard on the economy of the world. People are going to tend to turn on one another at a time like that.

Jesus says to His own disciples, {9} "They're going to deliver you up to be afflicted and kill you."

Why? Well, because you are My disciples and you are going be hated of all nations for My namesake, because you call yourself a Christian and you carry My name, they are going to hate you around the world. I would have to say that's a little different from what it is right now, but it's not too hard to understand. What is sad about it is that, many are going to stumble at that time from the faith, and many will betray one another and will come to hate one another. People who, a month before, or a year before were brothers, and loved one another, and went to church together, and sang together, prayed together, and wept together. And now they won't talk to each other anymore and will hate one another and would actually betray a brother to the authorities.

This is something Jesus said, that we could, pardon the expression, look forward to, as one of the signs that we were approaching the end of the age.

So there will be several things that begin in the last days when we start cracking open the seals. They are false christs and false prophets, then wars and rumors of wars, then famines, then pestilence, then earthquakes, then religious persecutions. All these things come along.

Jesus Opens the Second Seal

Now let's roll back into Revelation again, chapter 6 and verse three, "And when he (Jesus) had opened the second seal, I heard the second living creature say, "Come and see," {4} And there went out another horse, that was red, and power was given to him that sat thereon to take peace from the earth, and that they should kill one another, and there was given to him a great sword."

Jesus said, right after He said that "There would be false christs," He said, "There will be wars and rumors of wars." In Revelation, we have the one sitting on the white horse with the bow in his hand, the false christ, followed immediately by the red horse, which is the horse of war, to take peace from the earth with a great sword.

Jesus Opens the Third Seal

In verse five of Revelation 6, "When He opened the third seal, "I heard the third living creature say, "Come and see," and I looked, and lo, a black horse, and he that sat on him had a pair of balances in his hand, {6} And I heard a voice in the midst of the four creatures say, "A measure of wheat for a penny. Three measures of barley for a penny, and be careful with the oil and wine.""

What this is giving us, is a time of inflation, and a time of scarcity of food, when people are weighing it out in small measures and charging high prices for it and being careful with everything that's there. It's famine and it is the third of the things Jesus said we would see at a time leading up to His return!

"Jesus said "There are going to be false christs and wars and rumors of wars, nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, famines and pestilences, and earthquakes in various places, as we approach the time of the end."

Jesus Opens the Fourth Seal

In Revelation chapter 6 verse seven, "When Jesus had opened the fourth seal, I (John) heard the voice of the fourth creature say, "Come and see," {8} And I looked, and behold a pale horse, and his name that sat on him was Death, and Hell followed with him. And power was given to him over the fourth part of the earth, to kill with the sword, and with hunger, and with death, and with the beasts of the earth."

This is bad news folks, by the time you get through this deception, and wars, and famines, and pestilence, a lot of people would have died. But this is what Jesus said that we are going to run into as we come down toward the very time of the end.

Jesus Opens the Fifth Seal

In verse nine of Revelation 6, "When Jesus opened the fifth seal," Now we are through with the four Horsemen. Now we turn to something rather different. Remember Jesus earlier indicated there would come a time of betrayal of people turning away from the faith, of people turning on one another, of religious persecution.

In Revelation 6 and verse nine, "When he opened the fifth seal, I (John) saw under the altar, the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held."

Now, don't make a mistake here of thinking you're in real time. Don't make the mistake here of thinking there's some real souls under a real altar somewhere and that is what John is seeing in a vision and a representation of something. It is not at all unlike the situation, when God came to Cain and said in Genesis 4 verse 9, "Where is your brother," and Cain said, "I don't know where he is, am I my brother's keeper? and God said, {10} "The blood of your brother cries to me from the ground." It's a metaphor and this is a metaphor in a vision.

John said, verse 9 of Revelation 6, "I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God and for the testimony which they held."

And down through generations of time, there have been people by their scores, by their hundreds and by their thousands who have been killed just for that.

Verse 10, "And they cried with a loud voice, saying, how long O Lord, holy and true, are you not going to judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?" {11} And white robes were given unto them and it was said to them, that "They should rest for yet a little season, until their fellow servants and their brethren, that should be killed as they were, should be fulfilled.""

So more people were going to die, many more from the time of the opening of this fifth seal on through the remainder of the time leading up to the close of this age.


Jesus put it this way back in Matthew 24 and verse 11, he said, "Many false prophets shall arise and shall deceive many. {12} And because iniquity shall abound."

Now, for your information, the word in the Greek that is translated ‘iniquity’ simply means ‘lawlessness.’

Continuing in verse 12, "because lawlessness shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold."

We are going to live in a time toward the end of the age when there is so much lawlessness and so much decay and rot in the moral fiber of the people, that even those of us who have loved God, will find our love growing cold. You know, I don't see how we can watch the violence. I don't see how we can hear the language and watch the acts that we see on television and in movies and think that were going away from this unaffected. Violence is everywhere, lawlessness is everywhere, a callous disregard for human life on every hand and we think that "Well, I can just sail about on a peaceful ship right on through the stormy seas and I will never be affected by them."

Think again, {12} "Because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. {13} But he that shall endure to the end, that's the one that will be saved."

In saying that, what Jesus suggests is, that it's very possible that many of us will not, that we won't overcome, that we won't win, that we will lose!

Verse 14, "And this Gospel of the Kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations, and then shall the end come."

Forces at Work in the World

There are several things actually at work. There seem to be forces at work in the world that restrain the end from taking place. There are forces that seem to restrain the evil forces in the world and keep them from coming forward to overcome the world. But sometime those sources, those strengths, those sources which bind the evil, will be released and the evil will go forth upon the earth.

Another thing that restraints is the fact that there needs to be time for the gospel to be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations.

Abomination Of Desolation

Continuing in Matthew 24 and verse 15, "When you therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, in the holy place (whoever reads, let him understand), {16} Then let them which be in Judea flee into the mountains."

Now this is an interesting passage in a lot of ways, it's a reference back to the abomination of desolation that Daniel spoke of, which was a historical event, when a man named Antiochus placed an abomination right in the Holy of Holies in the Temple.

Now Jesus looked back at the prophecy of Daniel. Daniel looked forward to a time when a man would do this, and sure enough it happened. Well, Jesus looks back and takes this same prophecy and says, "It's going to happen again! And when it happens those who are in Judea should flee to the mountains."

Now this is not a signal for those of you who live in Los Angeles to flee to the mountains. It's for the people in Judea because apparently, what's about to happen there, Jerusalem will be encompassed with armies. The armies will invade the city and there will be just a short period of time, for those who know God and who trust God to get out. How short will it be?

"Well, Jesus said, {17} "Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take anything out of his house."

Just go down the outside of the house or go across the roof of the next house and get your way out of town as fast as you can go. Leave!

"If," {18} "you're out in the field working, don't go back in your house to get another change of clothes."

If you're out there working with nothing but, you know, some shorts, and the sun is shining on your back and you see this take place, or you hear about it taking place, just head for the hills, don't go home, don't get a shirt, just leave! That's how close it is!

"Woe," {19} "unto them that are with child, and those who are nursing children in those days, {20} Pray that your flight is not on the winter, or on the Sabbath Day, {21} Because when this comes down, there will be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, nor will ever be again."

This will be one time, in history, unlike any other time, that has ever been!

(Notice that Jesus mentions the Sabbath Day in verse 20 in this end time prophecy. Don’t you think that Jesus must have thought it was very important and in effect in order to mention it?)

Jesus said {22} "Except those days should be shortened, there would no flesh be saved alive."

Jesus didn't mean saved by salvation to eternal life. He's talking about flesh being saved alive. Do you realize that 2000 years ago, Jesus said that if we are left to ourselves, that ultimately there will be no flesh left alive on this planet. Now I do not know how anyone could have foreseen that 2000 years ago.


The biggest advances in history of making war was with bows and arrows and siege engines, and things to knock down walls and digging under walls in old cities and sieges, that's how we made war and when you went into a battle to fight, you might go in with 20,000 men and with the first round of battle that takes place, man-to-man combat, 10,000 people die, but 10,000 of them are still kicking.

Jesus says {22} "There's a time coming when no flesh would be saved unless the days are shortened," unless He does something to stop it and makes it not happen.

Well, we have lived to see a time when it's possible. He suggests that there is a time coming, when it will not only be possible, it will be easy.

Look, Here Is Christ!

"Then if any man shall say to you," verse 23 of Matthew 24, "Lo, here is Christ, or there is Christ!" Don't believe it! {24} For there will arise, false christs and false prophets, and will show great signs and wonders, insomuch that, if it were possible, they will deceive the very elect."

I want to tell you something. I want to tell you something that is very important for you to know! The times that lie ahead, as the seals of this book are opened and as the events begin to unfold down toward the end of this age, things are going to get so confusing, that the strongest of us will begin to doubt our own sanity. Well, what you do about it? Well, if you have your Bible, and if you know your Bible, you've got the basic tools to protect yourself against it. You have the basic things you need to keep the faith.

And Jesus says here. "Behold," {25} "I have told you before," {26} "and if they say to you, "Behold, He is in the desert," Don't go out there," or "Behold He is in the secret chambers," don't believe them, {27} For like lightning comes out of the east and shines to the West."

You have a great bolt of lightning starting in the East and crackling across the left side of the sky. How long does it take? And how hard is it to see?

"The coming of the Son of Man is going to be like that."

Then comes the strange metaphor, {28} "Wherever the carcass is, there the eagles will be gathered together!"

If You're A Christian?

One thing folks, if you're a Christian, if you're in Christ and if His spirit is in you and He comes back, you're going to be where He is. You will not have to go looking for Him!

Verse 29 of Matthew 24, "Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, the moon will not give her light, stars will fall from heaven, The powers of the heavens will be shaken, {30} And then there is going to appear the sign of the Son of Man in heaven, and all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they shall see the Son of Man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory!"

Man, this is a scary time, but they look at this earth, and they tell us that there have been times like that before.

Jesus Opens the Sixth Seal

Listen to what Revelation 6 says in verse 12. "I beheld when He opened the sixth seal, and there was a great earthquake, and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became blood. {13} And the stars of heaven fell to the earth, like a fig tree casts her untimely figs, when she is shaken of a mighty wind."

Down here in East Texas, they have these machines that grab hold of pecan trees and shake them, and the pecans falling on the ground and plops all over the place, sounds like big drops of rain hitting the ground.

Can you imagine a meteor shower like that? They're not just burning up in the sky, they are hitting the ground. They tell us it's happened before and I don't want to scare you too much, but they say it's sure to happen again.

Get a pair of binoculars and go out and look at the moon some night. You will see what's happened up there. Apparently it's going to rain very large objects from the sky at some point before it's all done, and you won't know when it's coming.

Until next time, this is Ronald L. Dart reminding you, a Hard Hat won’t help! 

This article was transcribed with

minor editing from a Born to Win Radio Program by: Ronald L. Dart

Titled: The Book of Revelation -Program #10

Transcribed by: bb 1-1-24

Ronald L. Dart was an evangelist and is heard daily and weekly on his Born to Win radio program. 
The program can be heard on over one hundred radio stations across the nation.

In the Portsmouth, Ohio area you can listen to the Born to Win radio program on 
Sundays at 7:30 a.m. and at 12:30 p.m. on WNXT 1260.

You can contact Christian Educational Ministries at
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Phone: (903) 509-2999 - 1-888-BIBLE-44


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