Then the Egyptians chased after them with all the horses and chariots of Pharaoh, his horsemen and his army, and they overtook them camping by the sea….(The flesh always pursues after the spirit to overcome it.)
Then the Egyptians took up the pursuit, and all Pharaoh’s horses, his chariots and his horsemen went in after them into the midst of the sea. (The flesh pursues us right up to our death in Christ–it wants to lay hold of us at whatever cost).
I will sing to the LORD, for He is highly exalted; the horse and its rider He has hurled into the sea….Pharaoh’s chariots and his army He has cast into the sea; and the choicest of his officers are drowned in the Red Sea. The deeps cover them; they went down into the depths like a stone (Neh 9:11, Jer 51:63, Rev 18:21)….The sea covered them; they sank like lead in the mighty waters…etc…
And know this day that I am not speaking with your sons who have not known and who have not seen the discipline of the LORD your God–His greatness, His mighty hand, and His outstretched arm, and His signs and His works which He did in the midst of Egypt to Pharaoh the king of Egypt and to all his land; and what He did to Egypt’s army, to its horses and its chariots, when He made the water of the Red Sea to engulf them while they were pursuing you, and the LORD completely destroyed them…(The horses represent the flesh in which men trust and their riders are the powers of darkness and/or the flesh itself which is controlled by the powers of darkness. Just as these were drowned in the Red Sea as the Israelites passed through on dry ground, so too at our baptism into Christ are we to become dead to the flesh and those powers of darkness who tempt us by our flesh).
Moreover, he (the king over you) shall not multiply horses for himself (so his hope and strength would be in them rather than in the Lord), nor shall he cause the people to return to Egypt to multiply horses, since the LORD has said to you, “You shall never again return that way.” (We must never return to the ways of the flesh, the bondage to sin).
When you go out to battle against your enemies and see horses and chariots and people more numerous than you, do not be afraid of them; for the LORD your God, who brought you up from the land of Egypt, is with you. (In faith we must believe that we can overcome the flesh).
And they came out, they and all their armies with them, as many people as the sand that is on the seashore, with very many horses and chariots….Then the LORD said to Joshua, “Do not be afraid because of them, for tomorrow at this time I will deliver all of them slain before Israel; you shall hamstring their horses and burn their chariots with fire.”…And Joshua did to them as the LORD had told him; he hamstrung their horses, and burned their chariots with fire. (Joshua–Heb. for Jesus–crippled the flesh in which men trust so it could not war against them again.)
It is becoming clear that horses and chariots represent the carnal flesh of man, especially those things of the flesh in which men trust for deliverance and security in place of the Lord. The riders and horsemen represent the powers of darkness and those mighty men of the flesh controlled by them who “war according to the flesh” (2 Cor 10:3).
Now it came about after this (Absalom’s return from exile to see David’s face) that Absalom provided for himself a chariot and horses, and fifty men as runners before him.
2 Samuel 15:1
Solomon had 40,000 stalls of horses for his chariots, and 12,000 horsemen.
1 Kings 4:26, cf. 10:25-29
And the king of Israel (Ahab) went out and struck the horses and chariots, and killed the Arameans with a great slaughter. Now the servants of the king of Aram said to him, “muster an army like the army that you have lost, horse for horse, and chariot for chariot. Then we will fight against them in the plain, and surely we will be stronger than they.”
1 Kings 20:21,23,25
Then it came about as they were going along and talking, that behold, there appeared a chariot of fire and horses of fire which separated the two of them. And Elijah went up by a whirlwind to heaven. And Elisha saw it and cried out, “my father, my father, the chariots of Israel and its horsemen!”
2 Kings 2:11,12
Now when the attendant of the man of God had risen early and gone out, behold, an army with horses and chariots was circling the city. And his servant said to him, “Alas, my master! What shall we do?” So he answered, “Do not fear, for those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” Then Elisha prayed and said, “O LORD, I pray, open his eyes that he may see.” And the LORD opened the servant’s eyes, and he saw; and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha…
2 Kings 6:15-17
When Elisha became sick with the illness of which he was to die, Joash the king of Israel came down to him and wept over him and said, “My father, my father, the chariots of Israel and its horsemen!”
2 Kings 13:14
For behold, the LORD will come in fire and His chariots like the whirlwind, to render His rebuke with flames of fire. For the LORD will execute judgment by fire and by His sword on all flesh, and those slain by the LORD will be many.
Did the LORD rage against the rivers, or was Thine anger against the rivers, or was Thy wrath against the sea, that Thou didst ride on Thy horses, on Thy chariots of salvation?…Thou didst tread on the sea with Thy horses, on the surge of many waters.
Let us notice here from these previous five passages that the Lord has His own horses and chariots, the true power and strength and security of the believer. These represent the eternal, unseen things of the Spirit which bring salvation to the righteous but the judgement of God upon the wicked.
Now therefore, come, make a bargain with my master the king of Assyria, and I will give you two thousand horses, if you are able on your part to set riders on them (the devil promises us the world and the securities of the flesh if we will bow down and worship him). How then can you repulse one official of the least of my master’s servants, and rely on Egypt (the world and the things in the world) for chariots and for horsemen?
2 Kings 18:23-24
Josiah did away with the horses which the kings of Judah had given to the sun, at the entrance of the house of the LORD, by the chamber of Nathan-melech the official, which was in the precincts; and he burned the chariots of the sun with fire. (These things of the flesh had become their god).
2 Kings 23:11
Do you give the horse his might? Do you clothe his neck with a mane? Do you make him leap like the locust? His majestic snorting is terrible. He paws in the valley, and rejoices in his strength; he goes out to meet the weapons. He laughs at fear and is not dismayed; and he does not turn back from the sword. The quiver rattles against him, the flashing spear and javelin. With shaking and rage he races over the ground; and he does not stand still at the voice of the trumpet. As often as the trumpet sounds he says,”Aha!” And he scents the battle from afar, and thunder of the captains, and the war cry. (Thus the horse is a symbol of all that wars after the flesh.)
Some boast in chariots, and some in horses; but we will boast in the name of the LORD, our God.
God does not delight in the strength of the horse; He does not take pleasure in the legs of a man.
Their land (the house of Jacob’s) has also been filled with silver and gold, and there is no end to their treasures; their land has also been filled with horses, and there is no end to their chariots. Their land has also been filled with idols; they worship the work of their hands, that which their fingers have made.
He will also lift up a standard to the distant nation (the powers of darkness), and will whistle for it from the ends of the earth; and behold, it will come with speed swiftly. No one in it is weary or stumbles, none slumbers or sleeps; nor is the belt at its waist undone, nor its sandal strap broken. Its arrows are sharp, and all its bows are bent; the hoofs of its horses seem like flint (and so is the flesh to the unregenerate), and its chariot wheels like a whirlwind (those who sow to the wind reap the whirlwind, Hos 8:7). Its roaring is like a lioness, and it roars like young lions; it growls as it seizes the prey, and carries it off with no one to deliver it. And it shall growl over it in that day like the roaring of the sea. If one looks to the land, behold, there is darkness and distress; even the light is darkened by its clouds.
For thus the Lord says to me, “Go, station the lookout, let him report what he sees. When he sees riders (or chariots), horsemen in pairs, a train (lit. chariot) of donkeys, a train (chariot) of camels, let him pay close attention, very close attention.” Then the lookout called, “O Lord, I stand continually by day on the watchtower, and I am stationed every night at my guard post. Now behold, here comes a troop of riders (lit. chariot of men), horsemen in pairs.” And one answered and said. “Fallen, fallen is Babylon; and all the images of her gods are shattered on the floor!”
For thus the Lord GOD, the Holy One of Israel, has said, “In repentance and rest you shall be saved, in quietness and trust is your strength.” But you were not willing, and you said, “No, for we will flee on horses” (i.e., “we will trust in the flesh to save us”), therefore you shall flee! “And we will ride on swift horses,” therefore those who pursue you shall be swift.
Woe to those who go down to Egypt for help, and rely on horses, and trust in chariots because they are many, and in horsemen because they are very strong, but they do not look to the Holy One of Israel, nor seek the LORD! Now the Egyptians are men, and not God, and their horses are flesh and not spirit; so the LORD will stretch out His hand, and he who helps will stumble and he who is helped will fall, and all of them will come to an end together.
Cursed is the one who trusts in man, who depends on flesh for his strength, and whose heart turns away from the LORD.
Thus says the LORD, who makes a way through the sea and a path through the mighty waters, who brings forth the chariot and the horse (i.e., He entices the flesh to come forth and be destroyed in the flood of waters), the army and the mighty man [they will lie down together and not rise again; they have been quenched and extinguished like a wick]…
Who caused His glorious arm to go at the right hand of Moses, who divided the waters before them to make for Himself an everlasting name, who led them through the depths? Like the horse in the wilderness, they did not stumble (God gave them strength and made firm their paths in the wilderness).
In that time it will be said to this people and to Jerusalem, “A scorching wind from the bare heights in the wilderness in the direction of the daughter of My people–not to winnow and not to cleanse, a wind too strong for this–will come at My command; now I will also pronounce judgements against them. “Behold, he (the king of Babylon) goes up like clouds, and his chariots like the whirlwind; his horses are swifter than eagles. Woe to us, for we are ruined!”
Why should I pardon you? Your sons have forsaken Me and sworn by those who are not gods. When I had fed them to the full, they committed adultery and trooped to the harlot’s house. They were well-fed lusty horses, each one neighing after his neighbor’s wife.
Thus says the LORD, “Behold, a people is coming from the north land, and a great nation will be aroused from the remote parts of the earth. They seize bow and spear; they are cruel and have no mercy; their voice roars like the sea, and they ride on horses, arrayed as a man for the battle against you, O daughter of Zion! (In the same way the powers of darkness “ride” the flesh and war against the saints.)
Why then has this people, Jerusalem, turned away in continual apostasy? They hold fast to deceit, they refuse to return. I have listened and heard, they have spoken what is not right; no man repented of his wickedness, saying, “What have I done?” Everyone turned to his course, like a horse charging into battle (they pursued the desires and inclinations of their flesh rather than God).
From Dan is heard the snorting of his (the king of Babylon’s) horses; at the sound of the neighing of his stallions the whole land quakes; for they come and devour the land and its fulness, the city and its inhabitants. “For behold, I am sending serpents against you, adders, for which there is no charm, and they will bite you (these are the false prophets, the brood of vipers who are sons of the original serpent; they are the horses, mighty ones after the flesh),” declares the LORD.
If you have run with footmen and they have tired you out, then how can you compete with horses? If you fall down in a land of peace, how will you do in the thicket of the Jordan?
“But it will come about, if you listen attentively to Me,” declares the LORD, “to bring no load in through the gates of this city on the Sabbath day, but to keep the Sabbath day holy by doing no work on it…[and if you] do justice and righteousness, and deliver the one who has been robbed from the power of his oppressor, and do not mistreat or do violence to the stranger, the orphan, or the widow; and do not shed innocent blood in this place, then kings will enter the gates of this house, sitting in David’s place on his throne, riding in chariots and on horses (of Spirit), even the king himself and his servants and his people.
Jeremiah 17:24, 22:3-4, cf. 17:25
Line up the shield and buckler, and draw near for the battle! Harness the horses, and mount the steeds, and take your stand with helmets on!…Go up, you horses, and drive madly, you chariots, that the mighty men may march forward: Ethiopia and Put, that handle the shield, and the Lydians, that handle and bend the bow.
“A sword against the Chaldeans,” declares the LORD, “and against the inhabitants of Babylon, and against her officials and her wise men! A sword against the oracle priests, and they will become fools! A sword against her mighty men, and they will be shattered! A sword against his horses and against his chariots, and against all the mixed multitude who are in the midst of her, and they will become women!…
Behold a people is coming from the north, and a great nation and many kings will be aroused from the remote parts of the earth. They seize their bow and javelin; they are cruel and have no mercy. Their voice roars like the sea, and they ride on horses, marshalled like a man for the battle against you, O daughter of Babylon.
He says, “You are My war-club, My weapon of war;…and with you I shatter the horse and his rider, and with you I shatter the chariot and its rider…(The powers of darkness are an instrument of the Lord’s wrath to punish and destroy the carnal flesh, even while they ride the flesh).
Lift up a signal in the land, blow a trumpet among the nations! Consecrate the nations against her, summon against her the kingdoms of Ararat, Minni and Ashkenaz; appoint a marshal against her, bring up the horses like bristly locusts. (The flesh in which Babylon trusted shall destroy her).
And Oholah played the harlot while she was Mine; and she lusted after her lovers, after the Assyrians, her neighbors, who were clothed in purple, governors and officials, all of them desirable young men, horsemen riding on horses (she lusted after the flesh)….Now her sister Oholibah saw this, yet she was more corrupt in her lust than she, and her harlotries were more than the harlotries of her sister. She lusted after the Assyrians, governors and officials, the ones near, magnificently dressed, horsemen riding on horses, all of them desirable young men….Therefore, O Oholibah, thus says the Lord GOD, “Behold I will arouse your lovers against you, from whom you were alienated, and I will bring them against you from every side: the Babylonians and all the Chaldeans, Pekod and Shoa and Koa, and all the Assyrians with them; desirable young men, governors and officials all of them, officers and men of renown, all of them riding on horses. (Those who lust after the flesh will be destroyed by the flesh).
For thus says the Lord GOD, “Behold, I will bring upon Tyre from the north Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, king of kings, with horses, chariots, cavalry, and a great army (so does Satan, the king of Babylon, come against the world with the flesh)….Because of the multitude of his horses, the dust raised by them will cover you; your walls will shake at the noise of cavalry and wagons and chariots, when he enters your gates as men enter a city that is breached. With the hoofs of his horses (which are like flint) he will trample all your streets. He will slay your people with the sword; and your strong pillars (those institutions of the flesh which uphold a lie in contrast to the true Church which is the pillar and support of the truth) will come down to the ground.
Behold, I am against you, O Gog, prince of Rosh, Meshech, and Tubal. And I will turn you about, and put hooks into your jaws, and I will bring you out, and all your army, horses and horsemen, all of them splendidly attired, a great company with buckler and shield, all of them wielding swords….You will come from your place out of the remote parts of the north, you and many peoples with you, all of them riding on horses, a great assembly and a mighty army; and you will come up against my people Israel like a cloud to cover the land. It will come about in the last days that I shall bring you against My land, in order that the nations may know Me when I shall be sanctified through you before their eyes, O Gog.
Speak to every kind of bird and to every beast of the field, “Assemble and come, gather from every side to My sacrifice which I am going to sacrifice for you, as a great sacrifice on the mountains of Israel, that you may eat flesh and drink blood. You shall eat the flesh of mighty men, and drink the blood of the princes of the earth, as though they were rams lambs, goats, and bulls, all of them fatlings of Bashan. So you will eat fat until you are glutted, and drink blood until you are drunk, from My sacrifice which I have sacrificed for you. And you will be glutted at My table with horses and charioteers, with mighty men and all the men of war (who war after the flesh),” declares the Lord GOD.
But I will have compassion on the house of Judah and deliver them by the LORD their God, and will not deliver them by bow, sword, battle, horses, or horsemen (not be flesh but by the Spirit).
Return, O Israel, to the LORD your God….Take words with you and return to the LORD. Say to Him, “…Assyria will not save us, we will not ride on horses; nor will we say again, ‘Our god,’ to the work of our hands; for in Thee the orphan finds mercy.”
Their appearance (the locusts of the Lord’s army) is like the appearance of horses; and like war horses, so they run. With a noise as of chariots they leap on the tops of the (spiritual) mountains…
“He who grasps the bow will not stand his ground, the swift of foot will not escape, nor will he who rides the horse save his life (the flesh will not be able to save in that day). Even the bravest among the warriors will flee naked in that day”, declares the LORD.
“I sent a plague among you after the manner of Egypt; I slew your young men by the sword along with your captured horses, and I made the stench of your camp rise up in your nostrils; yet you have not returned to Me,” declares the LORD.
Do horses run on rocks? Or does one plow them with oxen? (A maxim of the natural order is that flesh resists anything that might cause it to suffer). Yet you have turned justice into poison, and the fruit of righteousness into wormwood (against the natural order).
“And it will be in that day,” declares the LORD “that I will cut off your horses from among you and destroy your chariots….”
The shields of his (who is attacking Nineveh) mighty men are colored red, the warriors are dressed in scarlet, the chariots are enveloped in fire of steel on the day of his preparation, and the cypress spears are brandished. The chariots race madly in the streets, they rush wildly in the squares, their appearance is like torches, they dash to and fro like lightning flashes (recall that Jesus said that such would His coming be like lightning)….”Behold, I am against you,” declares the LORD of hosts. “I will burn up her chariots in smoke, a sword will devour your young lions (who roar after the flesh), I will cut off your prey from the land, and no longer will the voice of your messengers be heard.”
The Chaldeans horses are swifter than leopards and keener than wolves in the evening. Their horsemen come galloping, their horsemen come from afar; they fly like an eagle swooping down to devour.
I am going to shake the heavens and the earth. And I will overthrow the thrones of kingdoms and destroy the power of the kingdoms of the nations; and I will overthrow the chariots and their riders, and the horses and their riders will go down, everyone by the sword of another.
I saw at night, and behold, a man was riding on a red horse, and he was standing among the myrtle trees which were in the ravine, with red, sorrel, and white horses behind him….And the man (the angel of the LORD) who was standing among the myrtle trees answered and said, “These are those whom the LORD has sent to patrol (lit. “walk about through”) the earth.”
Now I lifted up my eyes again and looked, and behold, four chariots were coming forth from between the two mountains; and the mountains were bronze mountains. With the first chariot were red horses, with the second chariot black horses, with the third chariot white horses, and with the fourth chariot strong dappled horses. Then I spoke and said to the angel who was speaking with me, “What are these, my lord?” And the angel answered and said to me, “These are the four spirits of heaven (Rev 6:1-8, 7:1, 9:14), going forth after standing before the Lord of all the earth, with one of which the black horses are going forth to the north country; and the white ones go forth after them, while the dappled ones go forth to the south country. When the strong ones went out, they were eager to go to patrol the earth.” And He said, “Go, patrol the earth.” So they patrolled the earth. Then He cried out to me and spoke to me saying, “See those who are going to the land of the north have appeased My wrath in the land of the north.“
Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout in triumph, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your king is coming to you; He is just and endowed with salvation, humble and mounted on a donkey (but not a horse), even on a colt, the foal of a donkey. And I will cut off the chariot from Ephraim, and the horse from Jerusalem; and the bow of war will be cut off. And He will speak peace to the nations; and His dominion will be from sea to sea, and from the River to the ends of the earth.
My anger is kindled against the shepherds, and I will punish the male goats; for the LORD of hosts has visited His flock, the house of Judah, and will make them like His majestic horse (of spirit) in battle…And they will be as mighty men, treading down the enemy in the mire of the streets in battle; and they will fight, for the LORD will be with them; and the riders on horses (of flesh) will be put to shame.
“In that day (when the Lord makes Jerusalem a cup of reeling and a heavy stone for all the peoples),” declares the LORD, “I will strike every horse with bewilderment, and his rider with madness. But I will watch over the house of Judah, while I strike every horse of the peoples with blindness (so is the flesh in which men trust given over to depravity and blind to the truth).”
Now this will be the plague with which the LORD will strike all the peoples who have gone to war against Jerusalem; their flesh will rot while they stand on their feet, and their eyes will rot in their sockets, and their tongue will rot in their mouth….So also like this plague, will be the plague on the horse, the mule, the camel, the donkey, and all the cattle that will be in those camps. Then it will come about that any who are left of all the nations that went against Jerusalem will go up from year to year to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, and to celebrate the Feast of Booths….In that day there will be inscribed on the bells of the horses, “HOLY TO THE LORD” (i.e., in that day the boastful pride of our flesh will no longer be in opposition to God but redeemed and made holy).
Now if we put the bits into the horses’ mouths so that they may obey us, we direct their entire body as well. (In the same way, when we bridle our tongues we reign in our flesh).
And I saw when the Lamb broke one of the seven seals, and I heard one of the four living creatures saying as with a voice of thunder, “Come.” And I looked, and behold, a white horse, and he who sat on it had a bow; and a crown was given to him; and he went out conquering (lit. “overcoming”), and to conquer. (The horses again represent the flesh in which men trust rather than trusting in God, and the riders are again the powers of darkness, the Lord’s army, the instruments of His indignation to execute His wrath upon the wicked. In Rev 19:11 Christ rides on a white horse and “in righteousness He judges and wages war”; thus this is a false Christ, the antichrist, who uses the flesh in which men trust to overcome them. The white horse represents the fleshly false religion of men, their form of godliness which the powers of darkness use to “overcome” the saints, cf. 13:7).
And when He broke the second seal, I heard the second living creature saying, “Come.” And another, a red horse, went out; and to him who sat on it, it was granted to take peace from the earth, and that men should slay one another; and a great sword was given to him. (Red, from the word for fire, is the color of blood, and of judgement. It was that after which Esau so lusted as to sell his birthright, Gen 25:30. And it is the color of the dragon in Rev 12:3 who represents Satan. This horse represents the violence and bloodshed of the flesh in which men trust and the powers of darkness use to accomplish their purposes in the wicked.)
And when He broke the third seal, I heard the third living creature saying, “Come.” And I looked, and behold, a black horse; and he who sat on it had a pair of scales in his hand. And I heard as it were a voice in the center of the four living creatures saying, “A quart of wheat for a denarius, and three quarts of barley for a denarius; and do not harm the oil and the wine.” (Black is the color of darkness, the absence of light, cf. vs. 12. The black horse represents the darkness in which flesh trusts and those secret things it believes to be hidden by the darkness, those things which men love rather than the light so that they will not come into the light and so be saved. The powers of darkness ride this black horse making men slaves to their ignorance and secret sins so that they cannot hear the truth and therefore perish in a famine of hearing the true word of the Lord, Amos 8:11-13. In Zech 6:1-8 the black horses go to the land of the north, followed by the white horses, where they appease the wrath of the Lord. In the same way following a famine of hearing the true word of the Lord people will follow after a false Christ.)
And when He broke the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature saying, “Come.” And I looked and behold, an ashen (lit. “green”, as the grass, NASB note reads “sickly pale”) horse; and he who sat on it had the name Death; and Hades was following with him. And authority was given to them over a fourth of the earth, to kill with the sword and with famine and with pestilence and by the wild beasts of the earth. (Green is the color of life and vitality, of blessing. This horse represents the false security in which the flesh trusts because of the covenant they have made with death promising them life and blessing although they walk in the stubbornness of their hearts, cf. Is 28:14-19 below. Death itself rides this horse to destroy by whatever means the harlot who prostitutes herself with death, cf. 17:16.)
Therefore, hear the word of the LORD O scoffers, who rule this people who are in Jerusalem, because you have said, “We have made a covenant with death, and with Sheol we have made a pact. The overwhelming scourge (or flood) will not reach us when it passes by, for we have made falsehood our refuge and we have concealed ourselves with deception.” Therefore thus says the Lord GOD, “Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone (the true Jesus), a tested stone, a costly cornerstone for the foundation, firmly placed. He who believes in it will not be disturbed. And I will make justice the measuring line, and righteousness the level (cf. Rev 11:1-3); then hail shall sweep away the refuge of lies, and the waters shall overflow the secret place (just like in the days of Noah). And your covenant with death shall be covered over, and your pact with Sheol shall not stand; when the overwhelming scourge passes through, then you become its trampling place. (The overwhelming scourge is the flood waters of the powers of darkness that lead the people to believe a lie; they are the perverted doctrines of demons.) As often as it passes through, it will seize you. For morning after morning it will pass through anytime during the day or night. And it will be sheer terror to understand what it means.”
The appearance of the locusts (which devour the green trees of the field, who are people) was like horses prepared for battle (i.e., they were things in which men trust to save them, flesh that wars after the flesh); and on their heads, as it were, crowns like gold, and their faces were like the faces of men (they were flesh kings, the mighty men of the world to whom the multitudes look for salvation). And they had hair like the hair of women (a covering, indicating they were under the authority of another rather than being under the authority of the Lord Jesus, cf. 1 Cor 11:10-15), and their teeth were like the teeth of lions (they roar and devour just like the devil and the powers of darkness, 1 Pet 5:8). And they had breastplates like breastplates of iron (not of righteousness, Eph 6:14, for they trust in the things of the world to guard their hearts); and the sound of their wings (that in which one takes refuge, cf. Ps 17:8, 36:7, 57:1, 61:4, 63:7, 91:1-4, Is 8:6, 10:14, Matt 23:37, Lk 13:34) was like the sound of chariots, of many horses rushing to battle (they take refuge in the flesh). And they have tails like scorpions, and stings; and in their tails is their power to hurt men (just as in the end the harlot is as bitter as wormwood, so at the end of these is their poison manifested; cf. Is 9:15 to see that the tail represents false prophets) for five months (until they have paid the last penny). They have as king over them the angel of the abyss; his name in Hebrew is Abaddon, and in the Greek he has the name Apollyon.
And the four angels (perhaps those in 6:1-8?), who had been prepared for the hour and day and month and year, were released, so that they might kill a third of mankind. And the number of the armies of the horsemen was two hundred million; I heard the number of them. And this is how I saw in the vision the horses (again, those things which are the works of men’s hands in which flesh trusts) and those who sat on them: the riders had breastplates the color of fire and of hyacinth and of brimstone; and the heads of the horses are like the heads of lions (the powers of darkness guide and direct them); and out of their mouths proceed fire and smoke and brimstone. A third of mankind was killed by these three plagues, by the fire and the smoke and the brimstone, which proceeded out of their mouths. For the power of the horses is in their mouths (i.e., their words) and in their tails; for their tails are like serpents and have heads (these are the adders, the false prophets, cf. Is 9:15); and with them they do harm. And the rest of mankind, who were not killed by these plagues, did not repent of the works of their hands, so as not to worship demons, and the idols of gold and of silver and of brass and of stone and of wood, which can neither see nor hear nor walk; and they did not repent of their murders nor of their sorceries nor of their immorality nor of their thefts.
And the angel swung his sickle to the earth, and gathered the clusters from the vine of the earth, and threw them into the great wine press of the wrath of God. And the wine press was trodden outside the city, and blood came out from the wine press, up to the horses’ bridles (i.e., that which is put into their mouth to direct their entire body, that which reigns in the flesh, James 3:3), for a distance of two hundred miles (lit. one thousand six hundred stadia).
And the merchants of the earth weep and mourn over her, because no one buys their cargoes any more,…cargoes of horses and chariots and slaves and human lives.
And I saw heaven opened; and behold, a white horse, and He who sat upon it is called Faithful and True; and in righteousness He judges and wages war….And the armies which are in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, were following Him on white horses (these who ride on white horses are those who possess their vessels in sanctification and honor, 1 Thess 4:4).
And I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried out with a loud voice, saying to all the birds which fly in midheaven, “Come, assemble for the great supper of God; in order that you may eat the flesh of kings and the flesh of commanders and the flesh of mighty men and the flesh of horses and of those who sit on them (those whom the powers of darkness empower as flesh kings) and the flesh of all men, both free men and slaves, and small and great.”
And I saw the beast and the kings of the earth and their armies, assembled to make war against Him who sat upon the horse (of spirit), and against His army….