Revelation 9-10 Contemporary English Version (CEV)
9 When the fifth angel blew his trumpet, I saw a star[a] fall from the sky to earth. It was given the key to the tunnel that leads down to the deep pit. 2 As it opened the tunnel, smoke poured out like the smoke of a great furnace. The sun and the air turned dark because of the smoke. 3 Locusts[b] came out of the smoke and covered the earth. They were given the same power that scorpions have.
4 The locusts were told not to harm the grass on the earth or any plant or any tree. They were to punish only those people who did not have God’s mark on their foreheads. 5 The locusts were allowed to make them suffer for five months, but not to kill them. The suffering they caused was like the sting of a scorpion. 6 In those days people will want to die, but they will not be able to. They will hope for death, but it will escape from them.
7 These locusts looked like horses ready for battle. On their heads they wore something like gold crowns, and they had human faces. 8 Their hair was like a woman’s long hair, and their teeth were like those of a lion. 9 On their chests they wore armor made of iron. Their wings roared like an army of horse-drawn chariots rushing into battle. 10 Their tails were like a scorpion’s tail with a stinger that had the power to hurt someone for five months. 11 Their king was the angel in charge of the deep pit. In Hebrew his name was Abaddon, and in Greek it was Apollyon.[c]
12 The first horrible thing has now happened! But wait. Two more horrible things will happen soon.
13 Then the sixth angel blew his trumpet. I heard a voice speak from the four corners of the gold altar that stands in the presence of God. 14 The voice spoke to this angel and said, “Release the four angels who are tied up beside the great Euphrates River.” 15 The four angels had been prepared for this very hour and day and month and year. Now they were set free to kill a third of all people.
16 By listening, I could tell there were more than two hundred million of these war horses. 17 In my vision their riders wore fiery-red, dark-blue, and yellow armor on their chests. The heads of the horses looked like lions, with fire and smoke and sulfur coming out of their mouths. 18 One-third of all people were killed by the three terrible troubles caused by the fire, the smoke, and the sulfur. 19 The horses had powerful mouths, and their tails were like poisonous snakes that bite and hurt.
20 The people who lived through these terrible troubles did not turn away from the idols they had made, and they did not stop worshiping demons. They kept on worshiping idols that were made of gold, silver, bronze, stone, and wood. Not one of these idols could see, hear, or walk. 21 No one stopped murdering or practicing witchcraft or being immoral or stealing.
The Angel and the Little Scroll
10 I saw another powerful angel come down from heaven. This one was covered with a cloud, and a rainbow was over his head. His face was like the sun, his legs were like columns of fire, 2 and with his hand he held a little scroll[d] that had been unrolled. He stood there with his right foot on the sea and his left foot on the land. 3 Then he shouted with a voice that sounded like a growling lion. Thunder roared seven times.
4 After the thunder stopped, I was about to write what it had said. But a voice from heaven shouted, “Keep it secret! Don’t write these things.”
5 The angel I had seen standing on the sea and the land then held his right hand up toward heaven. 6 He made a promise in the name of God who lives forever and who created heaven, earth, the sea, and every living creature. The angel said, “You won’t have to wait any longer. 7 God told his secret plans to his servants the prophets, and it will all happen by the time the seventh angel sounds his trumpet.”
8 Once again the voice from heaven spoke to me. It said, “Go and take the open scroll from the hand of the angel standing on the sea and the land.”
9 When I went over to ask the angel for the little scroll, the angel said, “Take the scroll and eat it! Your stomach will turn sour, but the taste in your mouth will be as sweet as honey.” 10 I took the little scroll from the hand of the angel and ate it. The taste was as sweet as honey, but my stomach turned sour.
11 Then some voices said, “Keep on telling what will happen to the people of many nations, races, and languages, and also to kings.”
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