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The Seven Bowls -- The Sixth and Seventh Bowl
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The sixth bowl is poured over the river Euphrates to prepare the ways for the kings of the East. As if on cue, the dragon and its two consorts the beast from the sea and the false prophet bring forth three frogs which are demonic spirits to go abroad the entire Earth and assemble the kings for the great battle then the narrative is interrupted with an exhortation from the Lord: I am coming like a thief!

The narrative continues: the Kings are assembled in a place called in Hebrew Armageddon and at the pouring of the seventh trumpet a great voice in heaven declares that "it is done." Meanwhile on Earth it is far from being done for an earthquake splits the Great City three ways and every island and mountains fled and they were not be found again right before the plague of hails hit the city.

After reading verses 12 through 21 of chapter 16 we are left to wonder how to make sense of it and yet a proper reading founded in the Old Testament and the liturgy reveals a logical progression of God's wrath: after disrupting the economic means of the Great City He uses the sword to effect the destruction of the city that is now opposing the Covenant and as we rely on the Old Covenant the various symbolic names used, Babylon, Euphrates, Armageddon become clear.

Highlights

  • Does the river Euphrates here refer to the actual river Euphrates?
  • Why do we see demonic spirits under the guise of frogs?
  • Is the exhortation in verse 15 an late insertion? If not how does it fit in the rest of the text?
  • Armageddon means -- literally -- Har Megiddo -- that is the Mountain of Megiddo or Mount Megiddo. Trouble is there is not such thing as Mount Megiddo. It does not exist so what do we make of it?
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