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Then I watched as the

LAMB opened the first

of the seven seals,

and I heard one of the

four living beings

saying with a voice

like thunder,

“Watch out!”

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Then I watched as THE ONLY EFFICACIOUS SACRIFICE gave the first of all the confirmations of His authority, and I heard one of the representatives of all living things saying with a voice as overpowering as nature’s greatest demonstrations of power,

“Watch out!”


1: “Watch Out!”

This Greek word is usually translated “come” or “go,” but it has many, many possible meanings. It is an emphasis on movement and allows the context to determine the direction of the movement. It has to do with the action about to take place. John is already in heaven with the angel that is showing him these things, so it is not a call for John to come. It cannot be a command to “go!” because it is not the living being that is sending out the horse and rider, it is Jesus who is sending out the proof of His own power. No created being can give Jesus a command. A possible translation that would fit better would grow from the idea of “arise, be established, come into being, become known.” That would fit what is going on here better than a simple “come or go,” and it is among the possible translations for this word according to Thayer. However, if the emphasis here is indeed upon the action that will take place (come into being) rather than the direction of the movement (come or go) it seems best to think of it as either a warning that something big is about to happen, or an excited anticipation of what will soon happen. With that emphasis in mind, any of the following would be acceptable ways to render it: “Watch out!” “Here it comes,” “Let’s roll!” “You can do it,” “On your mark, get set, go!” To determine the emphasis of the word’s meaning one must guess as to the intended recipient; to whom was this spoken? If spoken to the horse and its rider it was intended as encouragement to fulfill the prescribed purpose; if spoken to the recipients of the horse’s power, it was intended as a warning about what was coming. In light of everything mentioned above, a warning to the recipients makes the most sense to me.