The Seals of the Scroll Are Broken
1I watched as the Lamb broke open the first of the seven seals. Then I heard one of the four living creatures say in a voice that sounded like thunder, “Come!” 2 I looked, and there in front of me was a white horse! Its rider held a bow in his hands. He was given a crown. He rode out like a hero on his way to victory.
3 The Lamb broke open the second seal. Then I heard the second living creature say, “Come!” 4 Another horse came out. It was red like fire. Its rider was given power to take peace from the earth. He was given power to make people kill each other. He was given a large sword.
5 The Lamb broke open the third seal. Then I heard the third living creature say, “Come!” I looked, and there in front of me was a black horse! Its rider was holding a pair of scales in his hand. 6 Next, I heard what sounded like a voice coming from among the four living creatures. It said, “Two pounds of wheat for a day’s pay. And six pounds of barley for a day’s pay. And leave the olive oil and the wine alone!”
7 The Lamb broke open the fourth seal. Then I heard the voice of the fourth living creature say, “Come!” 8 I looked, and there in front of me was a pale horse! Its rider’s name was Death. Following close behind him was Hell. They were given power over a fourth of the earth. They were given power to kill people by swords. They could also use hunger, sickness and the earth’s wild animals to kill.
9 The Lamb broke open the fifth seal. I saw souls under the altar. They were the souls of people who had been killed. They had been killed because of God’s word and their faithful witness. 10 They called out in a loud voice. “How long, Lord and King, holy and true?” they asked. “How long will you wait to judge those who live on the earth? How long will it be until you pay them back for killing us?” 11 Then each of them was given a white robe. “Wait a little longer,” they were told. “There are still more of your believing brothers and sisters who will be killed. They will be killed just as you were.”
12 I watched as the Lamb broke open the sixth seal. There was a powerful earthquake. The sun turned black like the clothes people wear when they’re sad. Those clothes are made out of goat’s hair. The whole moon turned as red as blood. 13 The stars in the sky fell to earth. They dropped like figs from a tree shaken by a strong wind. 14 The sky rolled back like a scroll. Every mountain and island was moved out of its place.
15 Everyone hid in caves and among the rocks of the mountains. This included the kings of the earth, the princes and the generals. It included rich people and powerful people. It also included everyone else, both slaves and people who were free. 16 They called out to the mountains and rocks, “Fall on us! Hide us from the face of the one who sits on the throne! Hide us from the anger of the Lamb! 17 The great day of their anger has come. Who can live through it?”