My love for prophecy began when, as a teenager, I joined in a Revelation Bible study after a construction worker in our tiny, rural church decided to lead the teen group through Revelation. I went from a mere visitor accompanying my boyfriend to an excited Bible student who looked forward to church every Wednesday night. But the most troubling and mysterious image in the book for me was the introduction of the Four Horsemen.
I was a horse-trainer and a horse lover at this time. Our five horses and a herd of cattle grazed forty acres that had passed through generations. For many reasons, including my dad’s loss of employment after cancer surgery, we were “dirt poor,” meaning dirt was all we had. I used to walk up to the gate leading to the pasture and watch these majestic horses run at full gallop to meet us. They knew when it was feeding time. They came running on the instant.
As I imagined these Biblical harbingers of evil, I visualized massive, muscular animals with smoke coming from their noses. I could hardly read Revelation Chapter Six without shuddering, glad to think that these events were far off.
As I write this, the world is reeling from a pandemic that, in a matter of a few months, has plunged the whole globe into chaos. Back in the Revelation study, we learned about trumpet and bowl judgments, the two witnesses, plagues reminiscent of the Exodus, and the Miliennial Kingdom. It all begins with the horsemen.
All of the ills begin after John, now in Heaven, sees the Revelation of Yeshua Hamashiach in His glorified state. We open Chapter 5 with a frantic search for someone who can open the seals on the title deed to the Earth. The Lamb of God Who was slain steps up to do the job, and in Chapter Six, the Four Horsemen ride out.
All my life, I thought each horseman presented a separate event. In Chapter Six, each time a seal is opened, it seems a new catastrophe takes place.
But I don’t see it that way anymore.
From the latter days of knighthood to about 1831, the most feared part of the cavalry was the dragoon soldiers. A small detachment, the dragoons carried heavy weaponry, conducted patrols, scouted the situation, and acted offensively under direct orders. By 1861, dragoons disappeared, replaced in the U S. Army by the Grand Guard. This guard rode separately from the regular cavalry. They did not often take part in battle; rather they rode ahead, scouting the territory to report on enemy positions, often confronting the enemy in small skirmishes, patrolling along enemy lines.
The important thing to see is that they ride together. The Apostle John saw each seal broken, hearing a voice say, “Proceed.” The colors are announced and the orders are given to engage. However, the events heralded by the horses occur simultaneously. The white rider is given a bow, Biblically indicating a covenant, a peace agreement. Remember the rainbow in Genesis is the sign of God’s covenant under which he will not flood the Earth again. The bow is given to the white rider, suggesting that the world gives him authority, while the white flag or color tells us this ruler enters with the promise of bringing peace to the world. This world agreement could already have been signed; we would not know. The world leader could already be chosen and named among world powers. At the same time events are unfolding, prompting leaders to demand a central government: lawlessness (the verse says men fight one another, as in riots, likely over food); rationing; famine; plague; death. Power is given to the black rider to take life from 1/4 of the Earth.
Its important to note that Hebrew numbers do not carry the same significance as most Arabic numbers (other than the golden ratio, Pi, and the concept of infinity), nor do Hebrew numbers give consecutive accounting; they do not “add up” as in a sum, nor do they indicate consecutive order. We are told there are four horsemen. In the Hebrew mind, the number four is the number of the letter Dalet, or D, the fourth letter of the alphabet. Dalet signifies a door. In ancient days, Hebrew children were taught to draw a door symbol to indicate the Dalet. This tells us that these horsemen taken together — all the trials that come upon the Earth through their appearance — are the conduit for the events of Revelation that follow.
In Matthew 24, Jesus tells us that when we see all the end time signs coming together, happening at the same time in greater frequency and intensity, we are near the end of the age and His return. When we see, for example, earthquakes everywhere, plague breaking out all over the world, wars, famine, lawlessness, and massive death happening all at once, “look up for your redemption draweth nigh.”
It’s important to see the horsemen as a dragoon: having received their orders, they ride out together, carrying out the orders, the first alarms. The Revised Army Manual of 1861 reveals that the Grand Guard, under orders to engage the enemy, was to go out as a unit without drum roll and trumpet. Notice that the Four Horsemen ride in stealth, after the breaking of the seal on direct orders but before the trumpet call to arms. Jesus said the times would be much like the Days of Noah. Warnings would come, prophets would teach, but the people would not heed, mocking such archaic discussions, mocking Christ. Business as usual would continue up until sudden destruction would come.
Our signal that all four horses have been unleashed will be a move toward one-world government, an agreement that makes peace with Israel, and a short period of what sounds like imposed civil order culminating in martial law. It will be received with relief and gratitude by the world. Don’t expect civil liberties to remain intact; however, few will care, desperate for their old prosperity to continue.
Already, massive lock-downs are the norm in Europe and America. Arrests for curfew violations are increasing in France. The Italian Army is mobilized to carry corpses for cremation. The United States Economy is in a downward spiral. Schools and businesses are closed, elections postponed. Under fears for the future and the demand for stockable food, store shelves are empty. Truckers run all-nighters and can’t meet demand, some falling sick themselves. Health care workers are sickening under impossible conditions. Curfews are enforced by stepped up patrols and drones. Freedom is almost a bygone idea. The covenant-maker will be seen as a knight on a white horse. He will be treated almost as a messiah. Many will be deceived. The doors are open. There will be a time of trouble such as never before.
The Man of Perdition has not been revealed but that doesn’t mean he’s not in charge. I Thessalonians 4 tells us he cannot be revealed until apostasy is rampant in the church and the Body of Christ is taken out of the way. The Holy Spirit in the true remnant acts as a Restrainer, we’re told. The Age of Grace continues until the one called the anti-Christ comes to worldwide attention.
The main question is, are we as believers ready? Are we quick to blame every leader, every body politic, rather than looking inward? Have we considered the mystery hidden until now in the Word of God? Why are events lining up with Bible prophecy with a watchmaker’s precision? Why does Israel even exist and why is the whole world angry at this tiny nation? Why are Jews by the millions discovering scriptures thousands of years old, in the Septuagint written over 300 years before Christ’s birth, speaking of a Messiah that was to be executed, not for Himself, but rather for the sins of all.
Judgment begins at the House of God. The Church’s great sins are sins of hypocrisy, hate, bigotry, division, pride, idolatry, greed. But God is calling for His remnant to repent, reach out, and warn the world of His soon Return. The horses have greeted the sunrise. They are at full gallop. Of all the prophets who saw the Last Days, we are privileged to live them. Tenaciously pursue the Peace of God. Pray without ceasing. We are in the Final Passover of human history. Be ready. The Kingdom of God is at hand.