Revelation, A Key to Its Understanding

I have noticed over the last 30 years or so a teaching on understanding the Book of Revelation that seemed to originate with a Christian teacher by the name of David Ebaugh. I do not know much about the man except for some books I read that were printed back in the 1970’s. I think his reasoning is sound and God has indeed worked in the following manner in the past. Let’s examine this teaching and see for ourselves if this is a viable means of studying Revelation.

We will begin with the story of a young man named Joseph who had a dream. That in itself is not significant except for the fact that he had yet another dream and both were interpreted in a similar way. He attributed the dreams as being from God, showing him a future event. The story can be found in Genesis 37:5-10. Please note that God gave Joseph two dreams with the same interpretation! The number two is the number of a witness (Matthew 18:16). Jesus knew this principle – by the witness of two or more a word will be established (John 8:17, 18). So God established that this event would shortly come to pass. Shortly is not necessarily in our time frame, but God’s because it took about 20 years for it to happen to Joseph.

God gave Pharaoh two dreams also. Joseph told him the interpretation saying they both meant the same thing and God established that the dreams were important and would surely happen soon. In Genesis 41: 25, 32 (NASV) Joseph explained the dream that Pharaoh had of the cows and the wheat. “Now Joseph said to Pharaoh, ‘Pharaoh’s dreams are one and the same; God has told to Pharaoh what He is about to do.’” And again he said, “Now as for the repeating of the dream to Pharaoh twice, it means that the matter is determined by God, and God will quickly bring it about.” Please notice God’s pattern in the Bible. He repeats things when “the matter is determined by God” and when “God will quickly bring it about.”

God tells people TWICE when things are important. That is God’s nature. That is the way he does things. This can also be seen in Job 33: 14 (AMP) where Elihu speaks the Word of God, “For God [does reveal His will; He] speaks not only once, but more than once, even though men do not regard it. . . .” Elihu continues this thought in vs. 29, 30, “Behold, God does all these things twice, yes, three times, with man, to bring back his life from the pit [of destruction], that he may be enlightened with the light of the living.” That is why He speaks twice – to enlighten men – specifically the Body of Christ! That fact is culminated in Revelation! And, surely, what is written in the Book of Revelation is important to the Church!

Mr. Ebaugh noticed similarities in certain seals, angels, vials and trumpets within Revelation. It became obvious the similarities were not coincidences. The Trumpets in chapter 8 and 9 had the same descriptions as the Vials in chapter 16. Look at chapter 8:8 and chapter 16:3. Both mention the sea becoming blood. Then chapter 8:10 and chapter 16:4 both mention rivers and fountains of water. The same similarities occur for the next three Trumpets and Vials. It seemed to be too many similarities to be a coincidence to Mr. Ebaugh and that is how I see it, too. It seems the Lord is showing us the same events from different perspectives. When you combine them you will get a clearer image of what God is saying in Revelation! He combined the opening of the 7 seals with the 7 angels in chapter 14. And he combined the 7 Trumpets with the 7 Vials/Bowls. Let’s go down this line of thought (NASV) and explore what God is saying to the Church:


1st Seal – Rev. 6: 1, 2

6 I watched as the Lamb opened the first of the seven seals. Then I heard one of the four living creatures say in a voice like thunder, “Come!”2 I looked, and there before me was a white horse! Its rider held a bow, and he was given a crown, and he rode out as a conqueror bent on conquest.

1st Angel – Rev. 14: 6, 7

7 He said in a loud voice, “Fear God and give him glory, because the hour of his judgment has come. Worship him who made the heavens, the earth, the sea and the springs of water.”6 Then I saw another angel flying in midair, and he had the eternal gospel to proclaim to those who live on the earth—to every nation, tribe, language and people.

So, what do you gather from combining the 1st seal with the 1st angel? The eternal gospel goes out on the white horse bent on conquest.


2nd Seal – Rev. 6: 3, 4

3 When the Lamb opened the second seal, I heard the second living creature say, “Come!” 4 Then another horse came out, a fiery red one. Its rider was given power to take peace from the earth and to make people kill each other. To him was given a large sword.

2nd Angel – Rev. 14: 8

8 A second angel followed and said, “‘Fallen! Fallen is Babylon the Great,’ which made all the nations drink the maddening wine of her adulteries.”

Babylon falls when the fiery red horse takes peace from the earth.


3rd Seal – Rev. 6: 5, 6

5 When the Lamb opened the third seal, I heard the third living creature say, “Come!” I looked, and there before me was a black horse! Its rider was holding a pair of scales in his hand. 6 Then I heard what sounded like a voice among the four living creatures, saying, “Two pounds of wheat for a day’s wages, and six pounds of barley for a day’s wages, and do not damage the oil and the wine!

3rd Angel – Rev. 14: 9-11

9 A third angel followed them and said in a loud voice: “If anyone worships the beast and its image and receives its mark on their forehead or on their hand, 10 they, too, will drink the wine of God’s fury, which has been poured full strength into the cup of his wrath. They will be tormented with burning sulfur in the presence of the holy angels and of the Lamb. 11 And the smoke of their torment will rise for ever and ever. There will be no rest day or night for those who worship the beast and its image, or for anyone who receives the mark of its name.”

The black horse brings God’s fury on the beast and its followers.


4th Seal – Rev. 6: 7, 8

7 When the Lamb opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature say, “Come!” 8 I looked, and there before me was a pale horse! Its rider was named Death, and Hades was following close behind him. They were given power over a fourth of the earth to kill by sword, famine and plague, and by the wild beasts of the earth.

4th Angel – Rev. 14: 12, 13

12 This calls for patient endurance on the part of the people of God who keep his commands and remain faithful to Jesus.13 Then I heard a voice from heaven say, “Write this: Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on.” “Yes,” says the Spirit, “they will rest from their labor, for their deeds will follow them.”

The pale horse brings Death to the people of God who die for the sake of the Lord.


5th Seal – Rev. 6: 9-11

9 When he opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain because of the word of God and the testimony they had maintained.10 They called out in a loud voice, “How long, Sovereign Lord, holy and true, until you judge the inhabitants of the earth and avenge our blood?”11 Then each of them was given a white robe, and they were told to wait a little longer, until the full number of their fellow servants, their brothers and sisters, were killed just as they had been.

5th Angel – Rev. 14: 14-16

14 I looked, and there before me was a white cloud, and seated on the cloud was one like a son of man with a crown of gold on his head and a sharp sickle in his hand.15 Then another angel came out of the temple and called in a loud voice to him who was sitting on the cloud, “Take your sickle and reap, because the time to reap has come, for the harvest of the earth is ripe.”16 So he who was seated on the cloud swung his sickle over the earth, and the earth was harvested.

A harvest comes on the earth.


6th Seal – Rev. 6: 12-7: 17

12 I watched as he opened the sixth seal. There was a great earthquake.The sun turned black like sackcloth made of goat hair, the whole moon turned blood red,14 The heavens receded like a scroll being rolled up, and every mountain and island was removed from its place.15 Then the kings of the earth, the princes, the generals, the rich, the mighty, and everyone else, both slave and free, hid in caves and among the rocks of the mountains.13 and the stars in the sky fell to earth, as figs drop from a fig tree when shaken by a strong wind.16 For the great day of their wrath has come, and who can withstand it?” They called to the mountains and the rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of him who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb!17 For the great day of their wrath has come, and who can withstand it?” 7: 1 After this I saw four angels standing at the four corners of the earth, holding back the four winds of the earth to prevent any wind from blowing on the land or on the sea or on any tree. 2 Then I saw another angel coming up from the east, having the seal of the living God. He called out in a loud voice to the four angels who had been given power to harm the land and the sea: 3 “Do not harm the land or the sea or the trees until we put a seal on the foreheads of the servants of our God.” 4 Then I heard the number of those who were sealed: 144,000 from all the tribes of Israel. 5 From the tribe of Judah 12,000 were sealed, from the tribe of Reuben 12,000,from the tribe of Gad 12,000, 6 from the tribe of Asher 12,000, from the tribe of Naphtali 12,000, from the tribe of Manasseh 12,000, 7 from the tribe of Simeon 12,000, from the tribe of Levi 12,000,from the tribe of Issachar 12,000, 8 from the tribe of Zebulun 12,000, from the tribe of Joseph 12,000, from the tribe of Benjamin 12,000.9 After this I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands. 10 And they cried out in a loud voice:

“Salvation belongs to our God,
who sits on the throne,
and to the Lamb.”

11 All the angels were standing around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures. They fell down on their faces before the throne and worshiped God, 12 saying:

“Amen!
Praise and glory
and wisdom and thanks and honor
and power and strength
be to our God for ever and ever.
Amen!”

13 Then one of the elders asked me, “These in white robes—who are they, and where did they come from?”14 I answered, “Sir, you know.” And he said, “These are they who have come out of the great tribulation; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.15 Therefore, “they are before the throne of God and serve him day and night in his temple; and he who sits on the throne will shelter them with his presence.16 ‘Never again will they hunger; never again will they thirst. The sun will not beat down on them,’ nor any scorching heat.17 For the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd; ‘he will lead them to springs of living water.’ ‘And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.’

6th Angel – Rev. 14: 17-20

17 Another angel came out of the temple in heaven, and he too had a sharp sickle.18 Still another angel, who had charge of the fire, came from the altar and called in a loud voice to him who had the sharp sickle, “Take your sharp sickle and gather the clusters of grapes from the earth’s vine, because its grapes are ripe.”19 The angel swung his sickle on the earth, gathered its grapes and threw them into the great winepress of God’s wrath. 20They were trampled in the winepress outside the city, and blood flowed out of the press, rising as high as the horses’ bridles for a distance of 1,600 stadia.


Rev. 14:1-5   1 Then I looked, and behold, the Lamb was standing on Mount Zion, and with Him one hundred and forty-four thousand, having His name and the name of His Father written on their foreheads. 2 And I heard a voice from heaven, like the sound of many waters and like the sound of loud thunder, and the voice which I heard was like the sound of harpists playing on their harps. 3 And they sang a new song before the throne and before the four living creatures and the elders; and no one could learn the song except the one hundred and forty-four thousand who had been purchased from the earth. 4 These are the ones who have not been defiled with women, for they have kept themselves chaste. These are the ones who follow the Lamb wherever He goes. These have been purchased from among men as first fruits to God and to the Lamb. 5 And no lie was found in their mouth; they are blameless.

God’s wrath and His provision for the Church are illustrated here. And that provision is the 144,000. I believe they go by a couple other names: Two Witnesses, and Man Child (See the article Two Witnesses).


7th Seal – Rev. 8: 1-6

8: 1 When he opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour. 2 And I saw the seven angels who stand before God, and seven trumpets were given to them. 3 Another angel, who had a golden censer, came and stood at the altar. He was given much incense to offer, with the prayers of all God’s people, on the golden altar in front of the throne. 4 The smoke of the incense, together with the prayers of God’s people, went up before God from the angel’s hand. 5 Then the angel took the censer, filled it with fire from the altar, and hurled it on the earth; and there came peals of thunder, rumblings, flashes of lightning and an earthquake. 6 Then the seven angels who had the seven trumpets prepared to sound them.

7th Angel – Rev. 15: 1-16: 1

15: 1 I saw in heaven another great and marvelous sign: seven angels with the seven last plagues—last, because with them God’s wrath is completed. 2 And I saw what looked like a sea of glass glowing with fire and, standing beside the sea, those who had been victorious over the beast and its image and over the number of its name. They held harps given them by God 3 and sang the song of God’s servant Moses and of the Lamb:

“Great and marvelous are your deeds,
Lord God Almighty.
Just and true are your ways,
King of the nations.
Who will not fear you, Lord,
and bring glory to your name?
For you alone are holy.
All nations will come
and worship before you,
for your righteous acts have been revealed.”

5 After this I looked, and I saw in heaven the temple—that is, the tabernacle of the covenant law—and it was opened. 6 Out of the temple came the seven angels with the seven plagues. They were dressed in clean, shining linen and wore golden sashes around their chests.7 Then one of the four living creatures gave to the seven angels seven golden bowls filled with the wrath of God, who lives for ever and ever. 8 And the temple was filled with smoke from the glory of God and from his power, and no one could enter the temple until the seven plagues of the seven angels were completed.16 Then I heard a loud voice from the temple saying to the seven angels, “Go, pour out the seven bowls of God’s wrath on the earth.” In this last Seal and Angel combination is the preparation for the seven trumpets calls and the seven plagues poured out from the bowls.

In this last Seal and Angel combination is the preparation for the seven trumpets and the seven plagues poured out from the bowls.


1st Trumpet – Rev. 8: 7

7 The first angel sounded his trumpet, and there came hail and fire mixed with blood, and it was hurled down on the earth. A third of the earth was burned up, a third of the trees were burned up, and all the green grass was burned up.

1st Bowl – Rev. 16: 2

2 The first angel went and poured out his bowl on the land, and ugly, festering sores broke out on the people who had the mark of the beast and worshiped its image.

God’s wrath continues.


2nd Trumpet – Rev. 8: 8, 9

8 The second angel sounded his trumpet, and something like a huge mountain, all ablaze, was thrown into the sea. A third of the sea turned into blood, 9 a third of the living creatures in the sea died, and a third of the ships were destroyed.

2nd Bowl – Rev. 16: 3

3 The second angel poured out his bowl on the sea, and it turned into blood like that of a dead person, and every living thing in the sea died.

The seas are turned into blood. Now, this is just an observation of mine, but do you remember the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico? The pictures that I saw of that spill looked a lot like blood to me and many living creatures died because of that one spill. Then imagine a third of all the oceans like that.


3rd Trumpet – Rev. 8: 10, 11

10 The third angel sounded his trumpet, and a great star, blazing like a torch, fell from the sky on a third of the rivers and on the springs of water—11 the name of the star is Wormwood. A third of the waters turned bitter, and many people died from the waters that had become bitter.

3rd Bowl – Rev. 16: 4-7

4 The third angel poured out his bowl on the rivers and springs of water, and they became blood. 5 Then I heard the angel in charge of the waters say: “You are just in these judgments, O Holy One, you who are and who were; 6 for they have shed the blood of your holy people and your prophets,and you have given them blood to drink as they deserve.” 7 And I heard the altar respond: “Yes, Lord God Almighty, true and just are your judgments.”

The rivers and springs of water are affected by the third calamity.


4th Trumpet – Rev. 8: 12, 13

12 The fourth angel sounded his trumpet, and a third of the sun was struck, a third of the moon, and a third of the stars, so that a third of them turned dark. A third of the day was without light, and also a third of the night.13 As I watched, I heard an eagle that was flying in midair call out in a loud voice: “Woe! Woe! Woe to the inhabitants of the earth, because of the trumpet blasts about to be sounded by the other three angels!”

4th Bowl – Rev. 16: 8, 9

8 The fourth angel poured out his bowl on the sun, and the sun was allowed to scorch people with fire. 9 They were seared by the intense heat and they cursed the name of God, who had control over these plagues, but they refused to repent and glorify him.

The sun is affected by the fourth calamity.


5th Trumpet – Rev. 9 : 1-12

9: 1 The fifth angel sounded his trumpet, and I saw a star that had fallen from the sky to the earth. The star was given the key to the shaft of the Abyss. 2 When he opened the Abyss, smoke rose from it like the smoke from a gigantic furnace. The sun and sky were darkened by the smoke from the Abyss. 3 And out of the smoke locusts came down on the earth and were given power like that of scorpions of the earth. When he opened the Abyss, smoke rose from it like the smoke from a gigantic furnace. The sun and sky were darkened by the smoke from the Abyss. 4 They were told not to harm the grass of the earth or any plant or tree, but only those people who did not have the seal of God on their foreheads. 5 They were not allowed to kill them but only to torture them for five months. And the agony they suffered was like that of the sting of a scorpion when it strikes. 6 During those days people will seek death but will not find it; they will long to die, but death will elude them. 7 The locusts looked like horses prepared for battle. On their heads they wore something like crowns of gold, and their faces resembled human faces. 8 Their hair was like women’s hair, and their teeth were like lions’ teeth. 9 They had breastplates like breastplates of iron, and the sound of their wings was like the thundering of many horses and chariots rushing into battle. 10 They had tails with stingers, like scorpions, and in their tails they had power to torment people for five months. 11 They had as king over them the angel of the Abyss, whose name in Hebrew is Abaddon and in Greek is Apollyon (that is, Destroyer). 12 The first woe is past; two other woes are yet to come.

5th Bowl – Rev. 16: 10, 11

10 The fifth angel poured out his bowl on the throne of the beast, and its kingdom was plunged into darkness. People gnawed their tongues in agony 11 and cursed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores, but they refused to repent of what they had done. The throne of the Beast is in the Abyss. This kingdom is over those who did not have the “seal of God on their foreheads” – who are not sold out to God.

Are you sold out to God?


6th Trumpet – Rev. 9: 13-20

13 The sixth angel sounded his trumpet, and I heard a voice coming from the four horns of the golden altar that is before God. 14 It said to the sixth angel who had the trumpet, “Release the four angels who are bound at the great river Euphrates.” 15 And the four angels who had been kept ready for this very hour and day and month and year were released to kill a third of mankind. 16 The number of the mounted troops was twice ten thousand times ten thousand. I heard their number. 17 The horses and riders I saw in my vision looked like this: Their breastplates were fiery red, dark blue, and yellow as sulfur. The heads of the horses resembled the heads of lions, and out of their mouths came fire, smoke and sulfur. 18 A third of mankind was killed by the three plagues of fire, smoke and sulfur that came out of their mouths. 19 The power of the horses was in their mouths and in their tails; for their tails were like snakes, having heads with which they inflict injury. 20 The rest of mankind who were not killed by these plagues still did not repent of the work of their hands; they did not stop worshiping demons, and idols of gold, silver, bronze, stone and wood—idols that cannot see or hear or walk. 21 Nor did they repent of their murders, their magic arts, their sexual immorality or their thefts.

6th Bowl – Rev. 16: 12-14

12 The sixth angel poured out his bowl on the great river Euphrates, and its water was dried up to prepare the way for the kings from the East.13 Then I saw three impure spirits that looked like frogs; they came out of the mouth of the dragon, out of the mouth of the beast and out of the mouth of the false prophet. 14 They are demonic spirits that perform signs, and they go out to the kings of the whole world, to gather them for the battle on the great day of God Almighty.


7th Trumpet – Rev. 10: 7 (11: 15-19)

10: 1 Then I saw another mighty angel coming down from heaven. He was robed in a cloud, with a rainbow above his head; his face was like the sun, and his legs were like fiery pillars. 2 He was holding a little scroll, which lay open in his hand. He planted his right foot on the sea and his left foot on the land, 3 and he gave a loud shout like the roar of a lion. When he shouted, the voices of the seven thunders spoke. 4 And when the seven thunders spoke, I was about to write; but I heard a voice from heaven say, “Seal up what the seven thunders have said and do not write it down.” 5 Then the angel I had seen standing on the sea and on the land raised his right hand to heaven.6 And he swore by him who lives for ever and ever, who created the heavens and all that is in them, the earth and all that is in it, and the sea and all that is in it, and said, “There will be no more delay! 7 But in the days when the seventh angel is about to sound his trumpet, the mystery of God will be accomplished, just as he announced to his servants the prophets.”

*(The mystery of God will be revealed at the sound of the Seventh Trumpet! But before the Seventh Trumpet sounds the ministry of the Two Witnesses takes place (see the article Two Witnesses). Read Rev. 10: 8-11: 14 and that article.)

7th Bowl – Rev. 16: 15-21

15 “Look, I come like a thief! (1 Thess. 5: 2 uses the same term to talk about the same event) Blessed is the one who stays awake and remains clothed, so as not to go naked and be shamefully exposed.” 16 Then they gathered the kings together to the place that in Hebrew called Armageddon.

11: 15 The seventh angel sounded his trumpet, and there were loud voices in heaven, which said:

“The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Messiah, and he will reign for ever and ever.”

16 And the twenty-four elders, who were seated on their thrones before God, fell on their faces and worshiped God,17 saying:

“We give thanks to you, Lord God Almighty, the One who is and who was, because you have taken your great power and have begun to reign.

18 The nations were angry, and your wrath has come. The time has come for judging the dead,
and for rewarding your servants the prophets and your people who revere your name, both great and small—and for destroying those who destroy the earth.” 19 Then God’s temple in heaven was opened, and within his temple was seen the ark of his covenant. And there came flashes of lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder, an earthquake and a severe hailstorm.

17 The seventh angel poured out his bowl into the air, and out of the temple came a loud voice from the throne, saying, “It is done!”18 Then there came flashes of lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder and a severe earthquake. No earthquake like it has ever occurred since mankind has been on earth, so tremendous was the quake. 19 The great city split into three parts, and the cities of the nations collapsed. God remembered Babylon the Great and gave her the cup filled with the wine of the fury of his wrath. 20 Every island fled away and the mountains could not be found. 21 From the sky huge hailstones, each weighing about a hundred pounds, fell on people. And they cursed God on account of the plague of hail, because the plague was so terrible.


Please notice that Jesus comes “like a thief” at the Seventh Trumpet and Bowl (the LAST Trumpet – 1 Cor. 15: 51, 52). (See the article The Rapture. What Is It?) There are SO many Scriptures depicting the events of the Return of Christ! Here are a few for you to read: Col. 3: 4; Matt. 13: 41-43, 49, 50; Prov. 2: 21, 22.

I hope this revelation of God’s Word clarifies some things in your mind and spirit. Feel free to write me and let me know your thoughts on these issues. I certainly do not have all the answers. I have a lot more questions than answers. My goal with this article was to give the Body of Christ tools to build up your faith in Christ.

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