Most interpreters of Revelation read the trumpets as disasters to arrive in the future. But in fact they describe the great ecological disasters of the past. As John was not a paleontologist, his description is obscure, but it fits.

For example, with the first trumpet the oceans “turn to blood.” How does this relate? Well, the first day of creation (“Let there be light”) was photosynthesis. That process releases oxygen.

Prior to that event, the seas were filled with dissolved iron. For tens of millions of years, that iron absorbed the oxygen, converting to iron oxide. Iron oxide, of course, is red. In Australia today, the worlds richest remaining source of iron is in fact those thick deposits laid down over a billion years ago in what were shallow seas.

Iron oxide is also related to the blood that flows in our veins. It is the method used to carry oxygen to other cells, where it is exchanged for carbon dioxide. Oxygenated blood is red.

We can be relieved, thus, that the first six trumpets lay in the ancient past. The seventh trumpet, unfortunately, is of our own making.

For more on this topic, see Extinctions and Brains.

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