Let us recall again the general scheme of the Book of Revelation, so that we may retain a clear view of the whole book. We saw the seven seals , broken by the Lord Jesus Christ in Chapters 5-8:5. When the last of these seven seals is broken, the end has come! The kingdom, the plan of God shall have come.
The vision of the seven seals gives way to the vision of the seven trumpets, six of which we considered last week. The seventh trumpet will only be revealed in chapter 11, after an interlude in chapter 10, which we will consider today. In chapter 16 we will consider the vision of the 7 bowls.
Seven seals, seven trumpets, seven bowls - this is the pattern of the book of Revelation. The relationship between these seven seals, seven trumpets and seven bowls are, as Herman Hoeksema points out, both contemporary and successive  :
“On the one hand, they are contemporary, so that in principle the bowls begin at the same time that the seals are broken and are realized throughout the history of the present dispensation, side by side and at the same time. But on the other hand, they are also successive, so that there is an increase in the element of judgment. And as we study them, we feel that we are gradually led on to the time of the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. “
So, the trumpet judgments following the seal judgments are indicative of an increase in the intensity of judgment.
Last week we saw that the first four trumpets revealed divine destruction upon creation- or as we would call it ‘natural disasters‘. The fifth trumpet revealed the work of Satan in the world- with particular reference to the suffering of non – Christians in this world . The sixth trumpet spoke of the letting loose of the four angels who are bound by the river Euphrates, being authorized to kill one-third of mankind. We are eagerly waiting for the revelation of the 7th trumpet in 11:15 ff !
Now, one more interesting aspect about the book of Revelation. Within the revelation of the cycles of seven seals, trumpets and bowls we find some ‘interruptions‘. One of these we have already looked at in connection with Chapter 7. In the light of these terrible judgments the question is this: “Who can stand?” and “what happens to Christians – God’s people at this time of suffering and tribulation?“. In the seventh chapter the Lord shows us that in the midst of these trials His people are sealed (kept by grace). They shall become the heirs of the great and glorious salvation that is promised to them. The purpose of that interlude was to comfort Christians in the midst of tribulation. This same feature we find again in Chapter 10 which is an interlude before the blowing of the seventh trumpet.
The Mighty Angel
In this vision John sees another mighty angel coming down from heaven. (10:1) This appears to be a vision of the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. The similarity with the description given in Rev. 1:13-16 .
Note firstly : He is wrapped up in a cloud ( see also 1:7) - the symbol of divine majesty, as it is coming for judgment. Secondly, … “ with a rainbow over His head “ - the symbol of the grace and the faithfulness of God in keeping His covenant, especially with a view to all creation. Thirdly , “ His face was like the sun” ( 1:16) ; Fourthly, “His legs like pillars of fire.” ( 1:15)
Clearly, He appears here as the glorified Lord now in His capacity as the great Judge of heaven and earth, ready to confront the enemies of His kingdom. This is not the well known picture of the Lord Jesus as our High Priest and Mediator. He is coming wrath. In the closing verses of chapter 9 we found that mankind at large, despite all the temporary judgments that had already come upon the world, did not repent, but continued in their idol worship. He is now coming to judge this world. The purpose of this vision is not evangelistic. No call to repentance. This is a final curtain – final judgment!
He has a little scroll open in His hand, with His right foot upon the sea of the earth and the left foot on the land of the earth (10:2). We shall just now return to the little scroll in v.8. The earth and the sea upon which His feet are planted are symbolic of all the world. That kingdom of the world, the earth and the sea had been taken captive by Satan for a little while, but the appearance of Christ changes everything. By setting His feet upon these He indicates that He has all things in subjection to Him. This reminds us of Psalm 110:1 : "The LORD says to my Lord, “Sit at my right hand, until I make your enemies your footstool." Also 1 Cor. 15:25 reminds us that “ He must reign until he has put all enemies under his feet."
He is the Lord of the earth. It may not seem so now. It may seem as if the people of this world do as they please. It seems as if there is no God that rules or cares. The Bible reminds us however that suddenly , in a twinkling of an eye He will be there ( see 1 Thessalonians 5:1-10 ; Matthew 24:36- 51). That is the effect of the 10th chapter ! Chapter 9 ends with chaos, atheism and hardened hearts, BUT SUDDENLY, in chapter 10 there is the appearance of Christ.
So when you look at your world today , and you see the increase in immorality and wickedness and atheism and faithlessness , then remember that the last chapter of earth’s history has not been written. Here is the last chapter : He has a little scroll in His hand ! The Lion is roaring (10:3 reminiscent of Amos 1:2) , and if the lion roars, it befits all the lesser creatures of the earth to remain quiet! 
The Seven Thunders
The thunder is the Word of God  as it thunders out in judgment. “Seven thunders” - Seven  is the symbolic number of perfection. The thunderous word proclaimed here speaks with complete and final authority . The thunders speak in human language, and John is ready to write down what they speak, but he receives the command to seal up their revelation and not to write them down. All we know is that they are symbols of judgment. But why mention them if we can’t know the content?
It has been suggested that this is a little like Jesus use of the parables. His people understand their contents and meaning , but the uninitiated - the blind and deaf (the unbelievers- the world at large ) do not see, hear and understand.
The Meaning Of The Little Scroll
What is this little scroll (first mentioned in v.2) ? It certainly is not the same scroll as mentioned in 5:1. That was a closed, sealed scroll sealed with seven seals. This one is small and open.
The scroll in Chapter 5 was a progressive revelation of the history of the world and the coming kingdom of God. This little scroll , which John is now called to eat (v.9) makes him a prophet . It is the symbolic word of all that John still has to prophesy. He has already revealed much to us in the previous 9 chapters. But there is more to come. This little scroll contains the message of the seventh trumpet. If we look at the rest of the book of Revelation we begin to realize there are huge things still to come. He will speak of the fate of the holy city and of the temple and of the two witnesses who are killed in the city and taken to heaven on account of the testimony which they give. He speaks of a terrible conflict between the woman who gives birth to a male child, and the dragon who attempts to destroy the child but fails. He speaks of the beast which comes out of the sea and the beast out of the earth, and of the terrible things that they do in the earth. He speaks of the development and power of Antichrist and his aggression towards and oppression of God’s people. He makes mention of Babylon, the great harlot, describes her greatness among the nations of the world, but also pictures her final destruction. He pictures the effect of the outpouring of the seven bowls. He speaks of the binding, but also of the loosing of the devil and of all that follows. And only after all this has happened, he pictures the heavenly Jerusalem coming down out of heaven, and the new heavens and the new earth in which righteousness shall dwell.
In a nutshell : the revelation which John must still pass on to us is huge! But note what John must do with this message. He must not simply inform the church of its contents. No! He must eat it and make it part of himself. He must love it and embrace it. The truth of this prophecy must take hold of him.
Note also that this message, whilst it was sweet in his own mouth  was bitter in his stomach.
That is the effect of the gospel. It is always sweet to the believer, but when the story has to be told to those who oppose the message, it turns bitter.
But there is another more personal and profound dimension to it also , and anyone who has been preaching and feeding upon the gospel for a while will know exactly what John is saying here. The process of assimilation and digestion of the Word of God is often a painful one, because the power of sin is still in our hearts and minds. The Word of God, sweet as it was when we first swallowed it by faith, is often painful to digest until the medicine of the Word of God has done its work and transformed us.
This is especially true for the word of this prophecy. True, this book speaks of redemption and of salvation, and of heavenly glory and of a new creation, and of eternal life. But the book speaks of this only after it has presented us a picture of a battle with sin and unbelief and of a battle with faithful witnessing, and of self-denial and suffering. It is the road of battle for the kingdom of God. It is the road of persecution and mockery that you have to endure from the world. And that is hard. It causes inward pain. It is not what you had wanted, but it is this bitter battle revealed in the book that transforms you. Jesus told you this: “In this world you will have tribulation. But take heart. I have overcome the world.” (Jn 16:33) . So, do not focus on the present light and momentary afflictions. (2 Cor. 4:17) Focus on the end – on the reward !
May that be your experience. Take this Word - sweet to your taste because it is the Word of God. Swallow it. Do not rebel against it. Eat it. Hide it in your heart. May it have this result, that when it begins its work of transformation, the truth of the book which may at first seem painful as it kills the old man in you, … that it may transform your desires for the kingdom of God to come! Amen.
 Herman Hoeksema : Behold He cometh, p. 335
 see also Eph. 1:22
 In 1871 the Finnish missionary Martin Rautanen was once preaching to king Tsheya of the Ongandjera people ( a sub-tribe of the Ovambo people), and the king was disruptive were sitting under the word of God, and Martin Rautanen told him that earthly kings must be silent when the King of kings speaks by His word. This story reminds me of another king , James the 6th of Scotland who was notoriously rude when attending worship services. The Presbyterian minister Robert Bruce was preaching , and in his usual manner , king James began to speak to those around him. Robert Bruce paused , and the king fell silent. He continued preaching, and the king started talking again. He then stopped him and addressed him directly :” When the lion roars all the beasts of the field are quiet’: the lion of the tribe of Judah is now roaring in the voice of His gospel , and it becomes all the small kings of the earth to be silent” (D.C. MacNicol, Robert Bruce: Minister in the Kirk of Edinburgh , Banner of Truth- quoted in 1 Samuel , by D.R Davies ( Christian Focus publications) p.108
 See also Rev 8:5
 The number seven occurs throughout the entire book : seven churches, seven seals, seven trumpets, and seven bowls - when all of these seven are realized, the kingdom has come.
 As is the case in Isaiah 6:9-10 , where Isaiah speaks a message that the people cannot hear or understand. The same is true for the gospel : “ The natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them , because they are spiritually discerned. “ ( 1 Cor 2:14)
 Also Ezekiel 3:3
 See also Psalm 119:103 ; Psalm 19:10