Revelation 8:2

2 And I saw the seven angels which stood before God; and to them were given seven trumpets.

Revelation 8:2 Meaning and Commentary

Revelation 8:2

And I saw the seven angels
Not the seven spirits of God, ( Revelation 1:4 ) ( 5:5 ) ; their names, as well as their office, differ; nor the ministers of the word, though these are often called angels in this book, and blow the trumpet of the Gospel, and lift up their voice like a trumpet; but the angelic spirits, and these either evil ones, since they are the executioners of wrath and vengeance, and bring judgments on the earth; and who, are sometimes said to stand before God, ( 1 Kings 22:21 1 Kings 22:22 ) ( Job 1:6 ) ; or rather good angels, who are sometimes ministers of divine wrath; see ( 2 Samuel 24:16 2 Samuel 24:17 ) ( 2 Kings 19:35 ) ; "seven" of them are mentioned, as being a proper number for the blowing of the seven trumpets, which would complete all the woes that were to come upon the world, and in allusion to the seven princes the eastern monarchs used to have continually about them, ( Esther 1:14 ) , as it follows:

which stood before God;
and denotes their nearness to him, and familiarity with him, they always behold his face; and their service and ministrations, and their readiness to execute his will: the allusion is to the two priests standing at the table of fat, with two silver trumpets in their hands, with which they blew, and another struck the cymbal, and the Levites sung, which was always done at the time of the daily sacrifice F16:

and to them were given seven trumpets:
everyone had one; and which were an emblem of those wars, and desolations, and calamities, which would come upon the empire, and upon the world, at the blowing of each of them; the trumpet being an alarm, preparing for, proclaiming, and introducing these things; ( Jeremiah 4:19 ) ( Hosea 5:8 ) ; these are said to be given them; either by him that sat upon the throne, about which they were; or by the Lamb that opened the seal; and shows that they did nothing but what they had a commission and order to do. Here is manifestly an allusion to the priests and Levites blowing their trumpets at the close of the daily sacrifice, and at the offering of incense F17 as before observed.


F16 Misn. Tamid. c. 7. sect. 3.
F17 Maimon. Hilch. Tamidin, c. 6. sect. 5.

Revelation 8:2 In-Context

1 And when he had opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven about the space of half an hour.
2 And I saw the seven angels which stood before God; and to them were given seven trumpets.
3 And another angel came and stood at the altar, having a golden censer; and there was given unto him much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne.
4 And the smoke of the incense, which came with the prayers of the saints, ascended up before God out of the angel's hand.
5 And the angel took the censer, and filled it with fire of the altar, and cast it into the earth: and there were voices, and thunderings, and lightnings, and an earthquake.