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5From the throne came flashes of lightning, rumblings and peals of thunder. Before the throne, seven
     lamps were blazing. These are the seven spirits of God.
    From the THRONE came flashes of lightning, rumblings, and peals of thunder.

This is a vision of the power, strength, and wrath of God; all this is related to the THRONE being the seat of judgment. The true God causes earthquakes (Jeremiah 10:10) or rules with a rod of iron (Psalm 2:4-9).

Now lightning is unique to the ecosystem of the earth after "the FLOOD". Before the flood, there was no rain on earth. Weather was in equilibrium ('greenhouse effect'); plants grew in this misty humid shroud (Genesis 2:5-6). Something occurred at the time of "the FLOOD" which opened the earth and caused the atmosphere to move and generate clouds and downpours (Genesis 7:11-12).

From physics, lightning is generated from an imbalance of electrical charge. Soft hail pellets are falling downwards while small chunks of the pellets break off with a positive charge and are lifted upward. This difference in charge potiential is on the order of 100 to 1000 volts per centimeter. As this breaking off of chunks of ice from the hail pellets continues, tremendous potiential is built up. For a spark to occur, the breakdown potential is 10,000 volts per centimeter (wet air) to 30,000 volts per centimeter (dry air). Lightning forms when the 10,000 volts per centimeter difference is found in the cloud. A "pilot leader" of discharge is about 100 meters long before it finds neutralization from the base of the cloud.

However, some clouds become so imbalanced that the lightning must replenish from the ground. About 5-50 meters above the ground, the "pilot leader" is met by a "stream" from the ground. The resultant heating and expansion of the atmosphere becomes the thunder we hear.

The point of all this discussion is that vast amounts of energy is generated during this process. It makes one wonder if God and the THRONE aren't really a huge energy source????? See Psalm 29 .

    Before the throne, seven lamps were blazing. These are the seven spirits of God.
The Holy Spirit also is present in heaven even though He was sent to earth at Pentacost (Acts 2:3) and at Jesus' baptism as a dove (Matthew 3:16-17). John, the author of this Revelation of Jesus Christ, was impressed by the presense of the Holy Spirit(s) here just as he was in his greeting, Revelation 1:4 . That the seven Spirits are mentioned here with the lightning and thunder associates Them (Him) with judgment (spirit of judgment/burning -- Isaiah 4:2-6).

Jesus indicates the Holy Spirit's role in John 16:7-11:

  • Conviction of sin (unbeliever's condition)
  • Conviction of righteousness (believer's condition)
  • Conviction of judgment (ruler of this world condition)
Here in this verse the Spirits are in their judgment role because this vision is in heaven where there are no unbelievers and the believers have been "washed and raptured". Sin has been banished and righteousness prevails.
"Scripture taken from the The Holy Bible, New International Version, Copyright ) 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved.

References to the Revelation of Jesus Christ are in bold italics. All other references are in bold only. Return from cross-references by using the BACK button.