God's Dress Rehearsal
The Seven Bowls
The First Bowl: The first angel pours out the first bowl on the land. (Rev. 16:2). This plague is targeted at those who have committed themselves to the Antichrist.
The Second Bowl: The second bowl is poured out on the sea, turning the water (Rev. 16:3). A third of the sea life had already perished with the sounding of the second trumpet (Rev. 8:9), and now the rest of the sea life is gone. The oceans are dead.
The Third Bowl: When the third bowl of God's wrath is poured out, the rivers and freshwater springs also turn into blood (Rev. 16:4–5).
The Fourth Bowl: The fourth angel pours out his bowl on the sun, 'and the sun was allowed to scorch people with fire. They were seared by the intense heat' (Rev. 16:8–9). Rather than repent of their sin, the wicked inhabitants of the earth 'cursed the name of God, who had control over these plagues, but they refused to repent and glorify him' (verse 9).
The Fifth Bowl: The fifth of the seven bowls causes the kingdom of the beast to be plunged into great darkness. The pain and suffering of the wicked intensify, so that people gnaw their tongues in agony (Rev. 16:10–11). Still, the followers of the Antichrist 'refused to repent of what they had done' (verse 11).
The Sixth Bowl: The sixth angel pours out his bowl of judgment on the Euphrates River. That river is dried up in preparation for the kings of the East making their way to their own destruction (Rev. 16:12) (verse 13). These demons perform miracles and deceive the kings of the earth and gather them to the final battle on the Day of the Lord (verse 14). Under demonic influence, 'the kings [gather] together to the place that in Hebrew is called Armageddon' (verse 16).
The Seventh Bowl: The seventh bowl is emptied into the atmosphere. A loud voice in heaven says, 'It is done!' (Rev. 16:17). The seventh bowl results in flashes of lightning and an earthquake so severe that 'no earthquake like it has ever occurred since mankind has been on earth, so tremendous was the quake' (verse 18). Jerusalem is split into three parts, and the cities of the world collapse (verse 19). Islands are flooded, and mountains disappear (verse 20). Giant hailstones, 'each weighing about a hundred pounds, fell on people' (verse 21). Those under judgment 'cursed God on account of the plague of hail, because the plague was so terrible' (verse 21).