Revelation 9-12 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.”
The Two Witnesses
11 An angel gave me a measuring stick and said:
Measure around God’s temple. Be sure to include the altar and everyone worshiping there. 2 But don’t measure the courtyard outside the temple building. Leave it out. It has been given to those people who don’t know God, and they will trample all over the holy city for forty-two months. 3 My two witnesses will wear sackcloth,[e] while I let them preach for one thousand two hundred sixty days.
4 These two witnesses are the two olive trees and the two lampstands that stand in the presence of the Lord who rules the earth. 5 Any enemy who tries to harm them will be destroyed by the fire that comes out of their mouths. 6 They have the power to lock up the sky and to keep rain from falling while they are prophesying. And whenever they want to, they can turn water to blood and cause all kinds of terrible troubles on earth.
7 After the two witnesses have finished preaching God’s message, the beast that lives in the deep pit will come up and fight against them. It will win the battle and kill them. 8 Their bodies will be left lying in the streets of the same great city where their Lord was nailed to a cross. And that city is spiritually like the city of Sodom or the country of Egypt.
9 For three and a half days the people of every nation, tribe, language, and race will stare at the bodies of these two witnesses and refuse to let them be buried. 10 Everyone on earth will celebrate and be happy. They will give gifts to each other, because of what happened to the two prophets who caused them so much trouble. 11 But three and a half days later, God will breathe life into their bodies. They will stand up, and everyone who sees them will be terrified.
12 The witnesses then heard a loud voice from heaven, saying, “Come up here.” And while their enemies were watching, they were taken up to heaven in a cloud. 13 At that same moment there was a terrible earthquake that destroyed a tenth of the city. Seven thousand people were killed, and the rest were frightened and praised the God who rules in heaven.
14 The second horrible thing has now happened! But the third one will be here soon.
The Seventh Trumpet
15 At the sound of the seventh trumpet, loud voices were heard in heaven. They said,
“Now the kingdom
16 Then the twenty-four elders, who were seated on thrones in God’s presence, knelt down and worshiped him. 17 They said,
“Lord God All-Powerful,
19 The door to God’s temple in heaven was then opened, and the sacred chest[f] could be seen inside the temple. I saw lightning and heard roars of thunder. The earth trembled and huge hailstones fell to the ground.
The Woman and the Dragon
12 Something important appeared in the sky. It was a woman whose clothes were the sun. The moon was under her feet, and a crown made of twelve stars was on her head. 2 She was about to give birth, and she was crying because of the great pain.
3 Something else appeared in the sky. It was a huge red dragon with seven heads and ten horns, and a crown on each of its seven heads. 4 With its tail, it dragged a third of the stars from the sky and threw them down to the earth. Then the dragon turned toward the woman, because it wanted to eat her child as soon as it was born.
5 The woman gave birth to a son, who would rule all nations with an iron rod. The boy was snatched away. He was taken to God and placed on his throne. 6 The woman ran into the desert to a place that God had prepared for her. There she would be taken care of for one thousand two hundred sixty days.
Michael Fights the Dragon
7 A war broke out in heaven. Michael and his angels were fighting against the dragon and its angels. 8 But the dragon lost the battle. It and its angels were forced out of their places in heaven 9 and were thrown down to the earth. Yes, that old snake and his angels were thrown out of heaven! That snake, who fools everyone on earth, is known as the devil and Satan. 10 Then I heard a voice from heaven shout,
“Our God has shown
11 Our people defeated Satan
12 The heavens should rejoice,
13 When the dragon realized that it had been thrown down to the earth, it tried to make trouble for the woman who had given birth to a son. 14 But the woman was given two wings like those of a huge eagle, so that she could fly into the desert. There she would escape from the snake and be taken care of for a time, two times, and half a time.
15 The snake then spewed out water like a river to sweep the woman away. 16 But the earth helped her and swallowed the water that had come from the dragon’s mouth. 17 This made the dragon terribly angry with the woman. So it started a war against the rest of her children. They are the people who obey God and are faithful to what Jesus did and taught. 18 The dragon[h] stood on the beach beside the sea.
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