Great Wormwood Star
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Great Wormwood Star
(Revelation 8.10-13)
Page 147

"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 - 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. 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. 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!'" (Revelation 8.10-13)✞

Bitterness Plants

Wormwood PlantWormwood is a general name for the class of plant known as "Artemisia" whose characteristic is "bitterness of taste." They are not really poisonous in the sense of being fatal, although they are noxious, but the Israelites hated their bitterness. Jeremiah 9.14-15, prophesied this happening, "Instead, they have followed the stubbornness of their hearts, they have followed the Baals, as their ancestors taught them.' Therefore this is what the Lord Almighty, the God of Israel says, 'See, I will make this people eat bitter food and drink poisoned water." This passage tells us that God would give his people wormwood to eat and the waters of gall (bitterness) to drink. "Wormwood" according to Deuteronomy 29.17-18, "You saw among them their detestable images and idols of wood and stone, of silver and gold. Make sure there is no man or woman, clan or tribe among you today whose heart turns away from the Lord our God to go and worship the gods of those nations; make sure there is no root among you that produces such bitter poison." It was the fruit of idolatry. Wormwood always stood for the bitterness of the judgment of God on the disobedient.✞

Darkness over the Land

Total EclipseIn John's picture, there also came a darkening. "A third of the day was without light" and a great Wormwood star fell from the sky. In Exodus 10.21-23, "Then the Lord said to Moses, 'Stretch out your hand toward the sky so that darkness spreads over Egypt - darkness that can be felt.' So Moses stretched out his hand toward the sky, and total darkness covered all Egypt for three days. No one could see anyone else or move about for three days. Yet all the Israelites had light in the places where they lived." One of the ten plagues in Egypt was a deep darkness that was experienced over the whole of the land. In this picture of terror, John sees God using the elemental forces of nature like a great Wormwood star to warn the people and ourselves too of the final destruction to come.

"Great Wormwood Star"
by Ron Meacock © 2018

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