Boar Down!

Herschel Smith · 30 Oct 2022 · 9 Comments

Readers may have noticed I was absent the last several days.  It was a good time away.  A very good buddy and neighbor of mine, Robert, and I went hunting courtesy of the fine folks with Williams Hunting in South Carolina. I was shooting a 6mm ARC rifle with a Grendel Hunter upper, Aero Precision lower, Amend2 magazines, Brownells scope mount, Radian Raptor charging handle, Nikon Black scope, and a Viking Tactics sling.  I have no complaints about the gun.  It's at least a 1 MOA gun…… [read more]

Kelly Johnson, the SR-71 Blackbird, and Skunk Works. The genius that changed aviation.

5 months, 3 weeks ago

Pictured: F-104 Starfighter

Due to Johnson designing the F-104 to be better than any other aircraft, many other countries were interested in the F-104. At one point in time, the F-104 was operated by 15 different militaries.

This has always been one of my favorite aircraft. As a boy, I had a die-cast F-104 and spent seemingly endless hours destroying everything in its path. Here’s an interesting background on his work.

The Man Behind Lockheed Skunk Works

SR-71 Blackbird

Following the introduction of the U-2, both the USAF and CIA loved the aircraft. However, the 1960 U-2 incident [ Wiki ] highlighted to the USAF and CIA that the U-2 wasn’t invincible and needed something to prevent that.

Arming U-2s wasn’t an option- this would decrease the service ceiling of the U-2 and make it easier for Soviet radars to detect. As such, the CIA contracted Lockheed to develop a new, undetectable spy plane.

Lockheed contracted Johnson, then head of Lockheed Skunk Works, to develop the U-2s replacement. Johnson soon realized that arming the aircraft was nearly impossible, so chose another route: speed.

Johnson and his team developed the A-12 for the CIA. During the 1964 Presidential Election, Republican Barry Goldwater and Democrat Lyndon B. Johnson were having a televised debate.

Here, Goldwater accused Lyndon Johnson of allowing the Soviets to out compete the US. As such, LBJ decided to reveal the A-12 program and the fact that the USAF was implementing a variant of the A-12, called the SR-71.

Kelly Johnson had designed the fly higher than the U-2, at 85,000 ft (26,000 m). Instead of giving the SR-71 weapons, Johnson designed the SR-71 to travel at Mach 3.32, making it the fastest aircraft ever.

Herschel may have posted something about Mr. Johnson previously, but if you haven’t seen it, watch the Video Documentary of his career. They don’t make ’em like that anymore.

A Medical Perspective On Ammunition And Lethality

5 months, 3 weeks ago


[Lindsay] Gietzen is a person of incredible experience and equal amounts of sharp wit; the combination of those qualities makes her one of the world’s leading experts and educators on traumatic injury care. She’s seen thousands of gunshot injuries in the worst part of Michigan and is now doing her best to get tourniquets and bleeding control kits right next to AED machines on the wall of every building.

The revelations here may surprise you, and perhaps you’ll buy your own bleeding control kit after reading this.

There are EDC folks that carry extra mags and a med kit too. I would never tell somebody not to do this if they felt it necessary.

A gun needs to be two simple things: reliable and reliable again—everything else coming in order of personal preference. Accuracy comes with practice and cosmetic choices are largely irrelevant, so as a baseline, the gun must function. Now what about bullets?

I’ve been telling people this for years. The gun needs to go bang every time you pull the trigger; that’s primary. Next is the ability to hit with it, and thirdly, time to muzzle on target. After you can do all that well, caliber selection should be considered because a gun that doesn’t go bang and you can’t hit with is just a paperweight.

“What causes death isn’t really kinetic force or expansion,” said Gietzen. “What causes death is rapid exsanguination (blood loss). A hit to the central nervous system or head does not guarantee an instantaneous kill. Despite what you see in the movies, the survival rate for wounds to extremities is very high, and death becomes more likely the closer you get to the heart of major arteries. The most deadly places to hit are the groin, armpits or a major artery in the torso.”

Read the section on Caliber and Effectiveness at the link. Bottom line: big bullets on target win.

H/T George 1, in comments.

Hunter mauled by brown bear he shot near Anchorage’s Ship Creek, official says

5 months, 3 weeks ago


A hunter was attacked by a brown bear Thursday morning [This happened at the end of August] near Ship Creek after he shot it but didn’t realize it was still alive, an Alaska Department of Fish and Game official said.

That’s a perilous situation. Any large animal and all predators can be dangerous when shot, and it can be hard to know if they are actually dead.

The hunter, treated at a hospital for injuries, was able to make his way out of the area without calling for rescue, said Cory Stantorf, an assistant wildlife biologist for the Anchorage area.

The man shot a large adult brown bear between about 9 and 10 a.m. in an area near Ship Creek and up the valley from Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson land, Stantorf said. It is legal to hunt in the area, he said.

The man then approached the bear, which he thought was dead, and it got up and charged him, the biologist said.

The bear wounded him during the attack, according to Stantorf, although he said he could not provide additional details about the injuries or how severe they were.

Others in the hunting party shot at the bear, Stantorf said, and it stopped attacking and left. The hunters made it out of the area without further incident, he said.

It wasn’t clear by Friday morning if the bear had died from the gunshot wounds, Stantorf said. The hunting party was returning to the area to look for the bear, he said.

Grizz are tough critters.

There have been several other bear maulings in Anchorage this year. A soldier was killed and another was injured during a defensive attack involving a sow brown bear with cubs on a remote area of JBER in May.

A man was treated at the hospital last month after he surprised a sow brown bear with a cub in Eagle River. A woman was also injured last month when a black bear swatted at her on the Tony Knowles Coastal Trail near Point Woronzof.

Stantorf said it’s important that anyone recreating outdoors in the backcountry or even in Anchorage is paying attention to their surroundings and looking for bears.

The Postmillennial View

5 months, 3 weeks ago

Note: We’ve been providing a lot of Bible studies on eschatology, posting as we find them, or they have become available, or as we wright them. Soon we’ll make a post that will put them in preferred reading (viewing) order as an educational tool for the reader. That’s a goal here at TCJ, to make us better men and women through Christian education and ministry, better with our tools, and more knowledgeable and competent to survive what may come.

Eisegesis is reading into the text of the Holy Bible your presuppositions, personal view, or agenda, looking for confirmation bias in the Scriptures. Almost every American today, even the educated, operate their daily life in search of bias confirmation. This is very dangerous and has no place in proper Bible interpretation, nor is it wise in any discipline. Exegesis is drawing out the meaning, swallowing your pride, and letting God speak the truth to your heart regardless of how it makes you feel; it’s the plain meaning of Scripture in context.

We might have worded some things differently and have slightly differing views, but in the main, this is a very good brief overview of eschatology.

What is Postmillennialism?

When thinking about eschatology today, few Christians are even aware of the postmillennial view. When I have traveled to Russia, Ukraine, Latin America and other nations on short term missions trips, I am usually asked this question by new converts: “Are you pre-trib, mid-trib or post-trib?” as if these were the only three forms of eschatology. I often have to explain that I am not a dispensationalist. It is difficult to show some Christians that there is another way of looking at the end-times and the millennium altogether.

Postmillennialism (literally, “after the thousand years”) is the belief that Christ will physically return to the earth only after a non-literal millennium is completed. Postmillennialism is optimistic about the end times. Christ’s reign over the earth from heaven increases during the millennium, which is thought to be not a literal one thousand year period, but “a very long time.” Postmillennialism places the Church in a role of transforming whole social structures before the Second Coming and endeavoring to bring about a “Golden Age” of peace and prosperity with great advances in education, the arts, sciences and medicine.

All Christians must believe in the literal, physical return of Jesus Christ. Christians may differ in their opinions as to the nature of the millennium and the exact sequence of end times events without departing from biblical orthodoxy.

However, I believe that major problems have been caused by the most popular system: dispensational premillennialism. Ironically, I did not know anything of the postmillennial view until I became aware of the limitations of the dispensational paradigm. In searching for a view to replace dispensationalism, I found postmillennialism to be most convincing.

The article goes on to provide a brief overview of not just the four main eschatological views but several views and sub-categories. It also provides an understanding of “the antichrist,” the second coming, the Beast of Revelation, the great tribulation, and more.

Why The AR-15 Is The Most Popular Rifle In America

5 months, 3 weeks ago

Housekeeping Note: Herschel is offline this week. We’re certain that the quality of the posts will suffer, but the quality of the discussion in the comments doesn’t have to!


…After the American experience in Korea, where servicemen faced massed assault from Chinese forces, it was decided that the World War II workhorse M1 Garand rifle was no longer adequate; its low capacity and lack of full automatic fire hamstrung U.S. troops.

The Pentagon wanted a new rifle. Around the same time, there was a push among NATO members to standardize a rifle caliber to simplify wartime logistics. American design philosophies dominated both, and the Army’s parochial Ordnance Corps dominated the discussion on design. Ordnance Corps officers clung to the popular myth of the heroic American rifleman, who wins the day with a few well-aimed, long-ranged shots from a full-power rifle.

Thus, the M14 was born, as well as the new NATO bullet, 7.62x51mm. But everyone soon discovered the difficulty of controlling full-caliber rifles on full-auto; 7.62 NATO weapons quickly turned into anti-aircraft guns in longer automatic bursts, rendering the feature ineffective. These experiences were supported by the results of Project SALVO, a Pentagon research project to develop next-generation infantry weapons. SALVO concluded that a smaller bullet traveling at high velocity would be as lethal, if not more so, than big calibers like 7.62 NATO; the SALVO report recommended that the Pentagon should adopt a little-known gun called the AR-15, designed by ArmaLite engineer Eugene Stoner, and based off his earlier file design for the AR-10.

The AR-15 was unlike anything seen before: It was constructed of forged aluminum and plastics, used a direct impingement gas operating system, and was chambered in the new 5.56X45mm cartridge. It was the antithesis of the M14. Naturally, the Ordnance Corps hated it, and moved to kill the project by resorting to testing practices and emulation that were ultimately unfair to the AR-15. The weapon languished in design committee as Army traditionalists butted heads with Robert McNamara and his RAND Corporation  “whiz kids.”

The article goes on to discuss the interesting history of the AR-15 type platform.

Love thy neighbor, unless it’s a defenseless baby in your womb

5 months, 3 weeks ago

Newsom announced the launch of his new ad campaign on Twitter.

“Just launched billboards in 7 of the most restrictive anti-abortion states that explain how women can access care–no matter where they live,” Newsom tweeted. “To any woman seeking an abortion in these anti-freedom states: CA will defend your right to make decisions about your own health.”

As sick as it already is that he’s trying to boost his state with abortion tourism, the ads he’s running in Texas, Oklahoma, and Mississippi quote scripture. Those ads feature this quote from Mark 12:31: “Love your neighbor as yourself. There is no greater commandment than these.”

He clearly has no fear of God and operates in the reality of the shroud of blindness by the devil.

All things will be reckoned unto God, and the times of full restitution will come.

Before going any further, we must note that the Ten Commandments never saved a soul, and following them can’t save yours. All of the ceremonial rules and rituals in the Old Testament are abolished in Christ, the final sacrifice, once for all. There’s no bond or free, no Jew or Gentile, there’s no temple – but the body of Christ which are His Church, the throne of Holy God is in heaven, Jesus is the great High Preist, and the only altar before which to bow is at the feet of the Almighty.

Here’s the full quote from Mark:

“And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord: 30 And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment. 31 And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.” – Mark 12:29-31

And the rendering in Matthew:

“Then one of them, which was a lawyer, asked him a question, tempting him, and saying, 36 Master, which is the great commandment in the law? 37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. 38 This is the first and great commandment. 39 And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. 40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.” – Matthew 22-35-40

One cannot love his neighbor properly except & unless one loves the Lord God first, above all things. There’s a reason Jesus cites loving God above loving our neighbors. In our own fallen capacity, we cannot properly love our neighbor without first having the love of God.

Jesus is summarizing the Ten Commandments. The first five or so govern our relationship with the Holy One. The second set governs our interactions with each other. “Thou shalt no kill.” falls under the second heading from our Lord, for surely murdering your neighbor, such as a little defenseless baby, falls under the purview of not loving thy neighbor as thy self. All the commands of God are enjoined; with all purposefulness, we are also to defend life from unjust killing! We are not only to tell folks to love thy neighbor, but we are to tell them that God, the supreme ruler of the universe, shall have no equal and must be loved and honored above all things. Newsom has invited the full wrath of the Almighty.

For certain, the ten commandments are a covenant with the Hebrews handed down to Moses. Still, it is clear from the Bible that what would become known and set in tablets as the ten commandments were governing principles for all men before the commandments were given.

There are many good examples within Genesis and Exodus of the Law of God being in force and enforced prior to Exodus 20 at mount Sanai, not the least of which is the murder of Able (Genesis 4:8) in violation of what would be later written as the sixth commandment, “thou shalt not kill.” Murder was always wrong and still is. The sixth commandment preexisted even the very first murder and remains with us today, as do they all. The basis for the Law of Commandments, the Law of God, existed before being written and handed down to Moses.

Within the Law of God, each separate commandment is tightly connected and interwoven with the others. There is no practical way to trace out a violation of Law and not run into an immutable truth of more than one commandment within the Law of God. The murder of Able is but one example. It could be said that Cain violated the First Commandment when he took a life, as God is the creator and sole arbiter of the times, seasons, and number of the days of a man on Earth, and not Gavin Newsom.

So you see, killing a baby in the womb also violates the first commandment. And it’s the theft of God’s authority over life and death, violating God’s commands against stealing. So you see, it’s impossible to violate just one commandment. Now you know why no man can keep the Law; it’s perfect, and we are sinners.

God is the Law Giver. His Law-word is eternal and has real meaning in context. This Bible is not a collection of vaguely knowable spiritual sayings to misapply for our own convenience. Twisting the meaning of Scripture doesn’t change its actual sense.

These commandments are the immutable truth of God. The Law of God still exists for all men on this side of the Cross, restated by Christ in a simple two-part explanation from Mark 12, so that it would go well with us.

Exodus 20:1-17 follows:

1 And God spake all these words, saying,

2 I am the LORD thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.

[ One ] 3 Thou shalt have no other gods before me.

[ Two ] 4 Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth:

5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;

6 And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.

[ Three ] 7 Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain; for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.

[ Four ] 8 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.

9 Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work:

10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates:

11 For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.

[ Five ] 12 Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee.

[ Six ] 13 Thou shalt not kill.

[ Seven ] 14 Thou shalt not commit adultery.

[ Eight ] 15 Thou shalt not steal.

[ Nine ] 16 Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour.

[ Ten ] 17 Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbour’s.

Air Force Academy diversity training tells cadets to use words that ‘include all genders​,’ drop ‘mom and dad’

5 months, 3 weeks ago

It’s easy to see how this is designed to destroy America, but still, the cultist detail is a marvel to behold. The people doing this aren’t just mailing it in, so to speak; they’re dedicated true believers; behind it must be an evil spirit. Read the whole thing.

EXCLUSIVE: A diversity and inclusion training by the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado instructs cadets to use words that “include all genders” and to refrain from saying things like “mom” and “dad.”

The slide presentation titled, “Diversity & Inclusion: What it is, why we care, & what we can do,” advises cadets to use “person-centered” and gender-neutral language when describing individuals.

“Some families are headed by single parents, grandparents, foster parents, two moms, two dads, etc.: consider ‘parent or caregiver’ instead of ‘mom and dad,'” the presentation states. “Use words that include all genders​: ‘Folks’ or ‘Y’all’ instead of ‘guys’; ‘partner’ vs. ‘boyfriend or girlfriend.’”

We just talked about Gender Confusion on TCJ two weeks ago. There are only two sexes, male and female.

“Not ‘Colorblind’ or ‘I don’t see color,’ but Color Conscious,” it adds. “We see Color/Patterns AND VALUE people for their uniqueness.”

The documents were shared with Fox News Digital by Rep. Mike Waltz, R-Fla., a Green Beret and Afghan War veteran, who said the materials had alarmed cadets. Fox News Digital has verified the documents’ authenticity.


At the beginning of the training, cadets are assured that “what’s said here, stays in the room (let’s have each other’s backs)​,” and cadets were instructed not to “share people’s stories with their name/identifiers).”

The presentation also asks cadets to finish prompts like, “What I think about me in terms of who I am,” “What others think about me,” “What might be misunderstood about me” and “How squad/classmates can help me feel valued.”

At the end of the presentation, cadets are informed about additional D&I resources on the academy’s Colorado Springs campus, including a “D&I Reading Room” and “Affinity groups.”

According to the academy’s website, affinity groups help cadets “gather around a shared affinity or bond” and can be “identity-based,” “interest/career-based” or “cadet experience-based.”

A professor quoted in a 2021 press release by the academy describes the D&I reading room as a “safe space” meant “to broaden and deepen [cadets’] exploration of the issues involved in diversity, inclusion and justice.”

The academy also offers a “Cadet Wing Diversity and Inclusion Program,” where graduates are given a purple rope to wear across their left shoulder “symbolizing their position as a diversity representative” so that they can “advise students on diversity,” according to a press release.

Until Then

5 months, 3 weeks ago

Fear not the rulers and would-be tyrants of this world, for the times of the restitution of all things approaches. Where is Nero Caeser? Where is Alexander, the coppersmith? Where are Nietzsche, the Pharisees, Marx, or Stalin? Where are all those who claim they will usurp Jesus Christ or even remove His holy name from history? They are dead, but Christ ever liveth to make intercession for the saints. “For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet.” – 1 Corinthians 15:25

Until Then, by Pastor John Weaver, makes no mention of an eschatological view, but he states that Christ is ruling and reigning now; all enemies are being put under His footstool; Jesus is in the act of subduing all His enemies.

This is a great video to understand the truth of what the Holy Bible teaches about the Church, end times, and the Return of Christ; watch the whole thing.

The primary text for the lesson:

“41 And he said unto them, How say they that Christ is David’s son? 42 And David himself saith in the book of Psalms, The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, 43 Till I make thine enemies thy footstool. 44 David therefore calleth him Lord, how is he then his son?” Luke 20:41-44

9 mm vs. .45 ACP – A Different Kind of Comparison

BY Herschel Smith
5 months, 4 weeks ago

Shooting Illustrated.

It’s true that the best 9 mm loads are equal in performance to many .45 ACP loads. However, if recovered-bullet diameter and penetration mean what we think they do, the best 9 mm loads are not the equal of the best .45 ACP loads. Regarding capacity, a first-grader can see a 9 mm pistol holds more ammo, but most civilian self-defense shootings are resolved with between one and eight shots. So, capacity might not be all that important after all. But what about shootability? Are 9 mm pistols that much easier to shoot more accurately and faster? To find that out, I conducted a test to get to the bottom of the 9mm vs .45 ACP debate.

[ … ]

The 6.32-cubic-inch crush cavity delivered by the Federal 230-grain +P HST load is impressive, but it comes with a cost, and that cost is an uncomfortable shooting experience and an increase in the time it takes to fire multiple shots. Measuring recoil can be subjective, but more never helps you shoot better. Everyone will have different limits, but at some point, you must decide if the terminal performance you gain is worth the reduction in shootability that comes with it.

What the information from this test—and the massive spreadsheet created to digest it—might do best is to explain why most law enforcement agencies have gone back to the 9 mm. With the best 9 mm loads, you get terminal performance similar to standard .45 ACP loads out of a gun that holds more ammunition and is easier to shoot fast and accurately. But, what this also shows is that with a .45 ACP, you can select a lesser-recoiling load and shoot nearly as fast and accurately as you can with a 9 mm pistol, while delivering similar terminal performance. If you do that, the only thing you’re giving up with the .45 is capacity.

This is an odd article by Richard Mann.  He spends most of his effort testing and discussing ordinary .45 ACP rounds, but frankly I’ve never seen PD .45 ACP rounds.  They are all +P ammunition.  Furthermore, jacketed ball rounds for dangerous game defense are certainly all +P, and some are +P+ (such as with Double Tap 450 SMC, Underwood and Buffalo Bore).

He admits as much in both the front and end of the article, and yet states that the only thing you give up by selecting the .45 ACP is capacity.  So he admits that the .45 ACP +P has more effect than the 9mm, and then discusses giving something up to carry it (like capacity).

I think this article needed an editor.

But there’s one more thing missing in this analysis beyond “recoil,” however that is felt.  The 9mm is a higher pressure round (35,000 psi chamber pressure) compared to the 45 ACP (customarily 25,000 psi, but admittedly higher with +P+ ammunition).  There is simply a difference in feel, some call it a push versus snappiness.  I would liken it to the difference between shooting the 30-30 and 5.56mm (the former being at42,000 psi, whereas the later is 62,000 psi).

For me the bottom line is purchase and practice with both.  Use whatever you feel the best shooting in the circumstance.  But I’d never liken the performance of the 9mm with 45 ACP +P+ for dangerous game.

For dangerous game, carry a big bore cartridge.

The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse

5 months, 4 weeks ago

Revelation 6.

We thought to provide a note at TCJ about Revelation 6. We’ll attempt to simplify the complex by providing a gloss to prime the pump for those coming to the proper understanding of the New Covenant during the time the Church was birthed.

Keeping in mind that Job was probably the first book of the Bible written, perhaps the horse’s earliest use was in warfare (Job 39:19-25). The horse is an article of war; it symbolizes boldness and strength in battle. See Proverbs 21:31.

The very purpose of the sword brought to bear is that you might know there is a judgment (Job 19:29).

If you get Revelation 6 wrong, you can’t understand the book, and you miss the entire point of the end of the Old Covenant and the bringing in of the New Covenant in the blood sacrifice of the Lamb.

The New Testament is about the fulfillment of the Law and Prophets in Christ, the bringing in of the New Covenant, the birth of the Church – His body, and the judgment that comes upon that first-century generation for rejecting His Law – the Word made flesh.

Odd is how the Christian and even non-Christian world accept the destruction of Solomon’s temple and the judgment upon God’s people, and Babylonian captivity. But when Messiah was rejected, the Church birthed, and the second temple was destroyed, suddenly everybody has a problem.

Well, the problem is you. Get over it; God is sovereign and does as He pleases, and no amount of eschatological wishful thinking can change the facts. Revelation chapter six is about the destruction of Jerusalem in the first century (70AD), and neither can wild-eyed obfuscatory speculation about the future change that. Is chapter 6 a foreshadowing of a future global judgment, you decide? But, we will not ignore history or the correct interpretation of Scripture.

If you don’t understand Matthew 24, neither will Revelation make much sense among its fantastic imagery, hyperbolic and parabolic language, and prophetic legal decrees. Some background material is provided here, with study resources provided in part ten. Two further short notes on the subject are here and here.

As further background, in chapter 5 of Revelation, a sealed decree of God, a verdict in judgment, is held out in the right hand of He who is, the I Am. No creature in heaven or earth was able to take the scroll and open it. But, having defeated sin, death, hell, the devil, and the grave (the kingdom of death and hell), the sinless, thrice holy, resurrected Lamb of God is worthy (Revelation 5:1-7). Chapter six contains the opening of the first six seals of this multifold decree against those of that generation who rejected Jesus Christ. It’s important to note that Jerusalem also made war on the saints. In the fifth seal, the martyrs cried for vengeance. First, seal one.

Note: The right hand is that of power in Scripture; it’s why Christ is seated at the right of Power, and the position of being seated is that of being seated in judicial judgment (Luke 22:69). Jesus resides in the courts of heaven in judicial power over the affairs of men. Contrast that with Acts 7:55-56, where Steven sees Christ standing at the right side of God. Jesus was standing, to welcome His friend and faithful servant Steven home, and not seated in judgment. Having told the Pharisees that He would henceforth be seated in judgment against them in Luke 22 when they heard Steven say that he saw Jesus standing next to God, it drove them to such madness that they gnawed on him with their teeth.

“1 And I saw when the Lamb opened one of the seals, and I heard, as it were the noise of thunder, one of the four beasts saying, Come and see. 2 And I saw, and behold a white horse: and he that sat on him had a bow; and a crown was given unto him: and he went forth conquering, and to conquer.” – Revelation 6:1-2

Who or what is the white horse? The white horse we suppose to be the symbol of war, not simply battle, but good victory in just war. Some suggest that it is the opening of Rome’s war against Jerusalem. Ultimately, it’s God’s decree in heaven and carried out on earth among those nations and men in the first century. Jerusalem, greater Judea, all the land area called Israel, and surrounding areas were engulfed in the war. This section of Scripture is about the siege of Jerusalem. We think there is somewhat of a time progression shown in the horsemen as the city’s situation grew increasingly dim. Some say the bow represents the early stages of the war with standoff weapons such as the bow and catapult. But indeed, the first horse is that of standard Roman warfare techniques and tactics employed in the first century against Jerusalem.

“3 And when he had opened the second seal, I heard the second beast say, Come and see. 4 And there went out another horse that was red: and power was given to him that sat thereon to take peace from the earth, and that they should kill one another: and there was given unto him a great sword.” – Revelation 6:3-4

Jesus opens the second seal, and the horse is red. A symbol of blood and evil. This horse is the setting forth by God of the internal struggle among the “kings” and “rulers” of the “world” or land. History shows that as Rome approached and surrounded Jerusalem, terrible infighting occurred (Matthew 10:34), tribe against tribe, kingdom against kingdom, family against each other; even the Zealots turned on each other (Matthew 24:7, 10), all under the influence of devils as God allowed. See Isaiah 19:1-2 as an example of God turning kinsmen against each other as a proclamation of internal warring under His judicial review. Satanic confederacies always fall to internal strifes. Though we deserve what must be coming today, may God have mercy on Western Civilization.

Though we don’t hold this view, some suggest that this seal also represents the totality of fighting. Though Jerusalem was held by siege, the Jews fought back against Rome viciously and to significant effect in the provinces and especially in what is now North Africa.

“5 And when he had opened the third seal, I heard the third beast say, Come and see. And I beheld, and lo a black horse; and he that sat on him had a pair of balances in his hand. 6 And I heard a voice in the midst of the four beasts say, A measure of wheat for a penny, and three measures of barley for a penny; and see thou hurt not the oil and the wine.” – Revelation 6:5-6

Black is that color of distress, calamity, and specifically starvation with its attendant health problems (Lamentations 5:10) and moreover death by famine. The rationing of goods is the picture here. The equivalent of a day’s wages (Matthew 20:2, 9) would net a man only a measure to eat. There are varying opinions on what the standard (amount) was, but suffice it to say; that it was not enough to sustain more than one person and barely at that. Hyperinflation in food costs is pictured. Another example of famine is here in Ezekiel 4:16-17. Here is the Law of a Just Balance – Leviticus 19:36, supported in Proverbs 11:1, 16:11. The balance is a common symbol of equity and justice, which comes from the Bible. God is the great provider of all for all; food scarcity is the just reward for the evils of men and nations.

“7 And when he had opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth beast say, Come and see. 8 And I looked, and behold a pale horse: and his name that sat on him was Death, and Hell followed with him. And power was given unto them over the fourth part of the earth, to kill with sword, and with hunger, and with death, and with the beasts of the earth.” – Revelation 6:7-8

That Death and Hell are capitalized here in the KJV is a proper rendering. Verse 8 is the consummation of the fearful ravages of war wrought in the judgments of Holy God. So we also consider pestilence as a manner of judgment along with death by wild animals. The mind goes to the war of northern aggression in which more died from a combination of poor hygiene, lack of nutrition, and inadequate healthcare than by cannon or mini ball. Such is war, real war anyway. As to death by animals, we consider this in Bible terms to be the carcass of the unjust, now discarded, torn by animals (unclean), with no man to attend to a proper burial. It’s the treatment of the dead body of a disgraced man (or nation) in the Bible.

As an aside about verse 8: “his name that sat on him was Death, and Hell followed with him.” This phrase (with Revelation 20:13) points to why we coined the title: the kingdom of death and hell, which are all, spirit and man, that is opposed to the love and light and truth by Jesus Christ. We that are saved by grace, having the Spirit of God, moving and living, and having our being in Christ, are in the Kingdom of God. There are two kingdoms, and all men serve in one. By abiding in, or accepting, the kingdom of death and hell, sooner or later, it comes for its own, devouring them in their own evil designs on earth as outer darkness and eternal torment awaits, even to good men who do nothing and reject Christ.

Ezekiel 14:21 relates a concise word picture of what we find here in Revelation. The fourfold judgment is that of war, external by Rome in seal one. And seal two, internal fighting under the demonic influence indicated by the phrase “Hell following” in verse 8. This means the devils of hell were allowed by God to torment the people into fighting each other. (Have you noticed the spirit of the people in America lately?) Thirdly, famine and starvation, including uncontrolled inflation, as people sought too few goods. Fourth is the general calamity of war, including disease. The book of Revelation is not some new thing in language or typology. See Jeremiah 14:12, Ezekiel 5:12, 6:11-12 as a few examples of the tools God uses against all who break His covenants.

This section of Scripture is reasonably typical of apocalyptics representing sweeping historical events. The horsemen are not to be viewed in a historicist manner at all. These judgments are a single event in history, i.e., the destruction of Jerusalem. War is terrible; no right man would want it, nor would any right man tolerate it without rebellion for just cause.

The correct interpretation of these first four seals is that which Jesus spoke to His disciples of the desolation of Jerusalem in Matthew 24:6-8, Luke 21:5-6, 10-11.

Note that in Luke 21:12, after the ascension of Jesus but before the war, the persecution predicted by our Lord had already started, which points to the martyrs in the fifth seal; Revelation 6:9-11. The fifth seal is explained well in paragraph (2) here. It should bring great comfort to the saints of God to know that one day, all will be settled in heaven, and in earth, we win and will be vindicated in Christ. That the souls of the martyrs are under the altar indicates that they were a worthy sacrifice unto the Lord God. Are you?

The sixth seal is highly symbolic. We see the power and majesty of our God as He seeks to wreak vengeance for His saints. If you say that all the martyrs of all times are represented as under the alter, it’s not worth fussing over. That those souls in the first century were vindicated is apparent, and that all will be reckoned unto Holy God by the end of history, no believer doubts.

It’s best not to get carried away over-analyzing the symbolism in the prophetic books of Scripture. It’s easy to lose sight of the point of the book of Revelation when examining the red moon, darkened sun, dragon, colors of horses, etc. The book is the Revelation of Jesus Christ and not the revelation of any other thing at all.

Attempting to identify each horseman with any specific character or narrow historic event misses the point in spirit and method of apocalyptic literature in Scripture. If we were to know the particular interpretation of the (persons) horseman, it would be plainly explained in Scripture. God perfectly describes all specific symbolism in His holy word when it represents a particular thing or person we need to know. Revelation 1:20 is a good example, explaining the symbols in that chapter.

In first-century accounts of the siege, there’s evidence that people fled to hide in caves, piling up rocks to block the entrances. The sun was blocked out by fires burning from the Roman flaming catapult attacks, which also turned the moon red (orange). Those are two examples. Verses 13 and 14 are hyperbole bringing us to a sense of wonder at the power of God’s judicial authority over the earth. Other sections of Scripture have similar visual descriptions of the power and wrath of God. Perhaps those things have biblical significance, but it’s not a book of signs, and since they are used elsewhere but not literally, we accept the Revelation of Jesus Christ as being about Him.

Depicted in the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse are tools Almighty God uses in judgment against all who have forsaken His Law-word. So, by way of warning, one more time, without a national revival and returning to Him, what else could God do to America but the things depicted in both the Old Testament and the New Testament prophetic apocalyptic Scriptures? Europe is even now lining up for war and famine, diseases will follow, and death.

End notes: See Joel 1:4 and Zechariah 1:7-21, 6:1-8 as other examples using symbolism in rapidly successive multi-fold judgments of the Almighty emanating from the throne of His power in glory, each culminating as a single event in history on earth.

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