Readers Question / Comment - What do the colours of the horsemen in
Revelation 6 symbolize?
I hope all is well. I've been reading Revelation ch 6.
Through verse 8, as you know, describes as the Lamb breaks the first four seals
and the horsemen and their steeds who come forth. I don't wish to ascribe
greater significance than God intends, but this is where it gets strange.
New Living Translation describes the fourth horse as "green." I had
always read versions of Scripture that described it as "pale." In the
Greek (I am no Greek scholar--I used the Blue Letter Bible app), the word is
"chloros" and it is used in the NT 4 times. Only here is it translated
as "pale" in the KJV, et al., and in the other three instances, it is
translated as "green."
I have been curious for a long time
what color the pale horse was, and having found it, I simply googled "white,
red, black, green." Little did I realize that these are the "Pan Arab
Colors." Now I don't want to use that as some sort of basis for
anti-arab-ism or any other such thing. But, it does seem to hint at the
possibility that in the end, the Lord may be using the Arab countries as His
instrument of justice. This concept is not without precedent.
merely a novice and a layman. I hope this doesn't seem to childish to you.
However, what do you think about the colors of the four horses? I am interested
in your perspective.
Be blessed this Christmas. Thank you for your
patience and kindness.
thanks for the thoughts on Rev 6. My understanding of this
is that the Greek word 'kloros' used can mean green or pale.
Arndt and Gingrich’s Greek-English Lexicon says:
1. yellowish green,
light green of plants; and
2. Pale as the color of a person in sickness as
contrasted with his appearance in health. So the horse ridden by death - the
kloros of death - Revelation 6:8.” (page 891)
The context renders
the correct translation. It is used three times as green because the context is
of the grass or green plants. The only time it is rendered as pale (or ashen in
the NASB) is in Rev 6:8 because the context defines it's usage and the
context is death.
The colours to me are simply symbolic of the thought
expressed with each horse:
White - speaks of peace (the true prince of
peace, Jesus, rides the white horse in Rev 19) but this is a false peace and a
false rider coming in the name of peace in Rev 6 - the antichrist.
Red - the
red colour speaks of bloodshed and war which is what this rider on the horse
Black - pictures famine here. Used in Lam 4:4,8-9 to speak of the
effects of famine.
Pale green, Ashen - the colour of death which is what this
horseman brings. John Macarthur writes: 'The Greek word from which the
English word chlorophyll comes describes the pale, ashen-green, pallor
characteristic of the decomposition of a corpse.'
interesting thought to Google the colours and see the Pan-Arab colours and flag!
But the 4 horseman are four separate phases of this opening judgement... of false
peace, war, famine and death. I know a lot of people see the rise of Islam in
today's world and are worried and/or try to bring that into Bible Prophecy.
There is no doubt that God is currently using them to bring judgment and the
conditions on the Earth that are required for the rise of the Antichrist. But
personally I don't see Islam in Revelation 6 or as a large factor in the
book of Revelation. The Antichrist is not going to be a Muslim for the antichrist
will exalt himself as God and have no regard for the gods of his fathers (Daniel
11:36-37, 2 Thes 2:4)
I believe the war of Gog and Magog where God
supernaturally intervenes to wipe out the armies (largely Islamic) that come
against Israel, on the mountains of Israel, will put Islam back in it's
place. While Bible teachers debate the timing of this war, it could easily occur
before the tribulation and lead to the time of 'peace and safety'
within which the Antichrist (proclaiming to be a man of peace) will fully rise to
Anyway... probably gone a bit off your topic! So while it was an
interesting thought, I don't personally see Islam or the Arab's in Rev
6. God allows and uses the enemies of truth for a season if necessary but then
judgement comes upon them (like using Babylon and Assyria against Israel in the
Old Testament, before judging them).
Anyway, again... hope you have a
great Christmas/New Year period and God's blessings to you and your family.