Osborne, Grant R. Revelation. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2002. Location: Ellis BS 2825.53.O73 2002
III. God in Majesty and Judgment (4:1-16:21) pp. 218-602.
A. God’s Sovereignty in Judgment (4:1-11:19) pp. 219-450.
3. Seven Trumpets (8:2-11:19) pp. 339-450.
f. “Seventh Trumpet (11:14-19)” pp. 438-450.
The seventh trumpet, of Revelation 11:14-19, introduces the “third woe.” Osborne notes it is a difficult passage because the actual woe does not seem to be present. Instead, there is a celebration of the coming of the Lord (Osborne 2002, 438). People have variously suggested the woe is in chapters 12-13, in 12-20, or is simply absent from the text. If it is present in 1114-19, it “is proclaimed rather than described” (Osborne 2002, 438).
Osborne observes that the announcement of the third woe could take a reader by surprise, since the second woe was some time ago, in 9:13-21 (Osborne 2002, 439). The interlude may have been a purposeful part of the second woe. The trumpet, when blown, would lead readers to expect an immediate catastrophe, as happened in the past. However, as in the action of the seventh seal, there is something which seems peaceable. Osborne notes the seventh seal introduces silence but the seventh trumpet introduces a choir (Osborne 2002, 440). The heavenly chorus sings loudly about the victorious kingdom of God, which is a certain reality. The Lord has ushered in a heavenly kingdom which replaces all the earthly kingdoms (Osborne 2002, 441). Osborne sees a strong emphasis on the unity of the Father and the Son in the eternal kingdom. Temporality has been ended by the eternal Lord.
In Revelation 11:16-18, the twenty-four elders sing a hymn which celebrates God as He “has ended this world and begun his eternal reign” (Osborne 2002, 442). In powerful terms the title of God as the one “who is, who was, and who is to come” is used but without the future, indicating that God’s kingdom is present now forever (Osborne 2002, 443). God is reigning in his final show of power. While some, taking a preterist approach, think this is a description of Christ’s kingdom after the sacking of Jerusalem in 70, Osborne observes that God’s reign in Christianity was established earlier, by Pentecost, so the destruction of Jerusalem is not a natural fit (Osborne 2002, 444). The hymn further refers to Psalm two, with mockers despising God’s wrath, and a statement of God judging the mockers. The time referred to will also be one for judging the dead and rewarding the faithful (Osborne 2002, 445). Osborne notes that different people receive some sort of rewards, but the nature of the rewards, their differences, and distinctions among the groups are not at all clear (Osborne 2002, 446). Regardless, at the end of the song, God’s temple in heaven has been opened. God’s mercy is present for the end of this age (Osborne 2002, 448).