Revelation 6:5-6 Those Who Continually Seek The Blessings And Anointing Of Heaven Will Not Be Touched By Earthly Calamities
When He broke the third seal, I heard the third living creature saying, “Come.” I looked, and behold, a black horse; and he who sat on it had a pair of scales (zugos) in his hand. And I heard something like 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 damage the oil and the wine.”
The breaking of the third seal releases a time of economic hardship. However, those who continue to feed on the oil and wine of the Spirit will continue to live abundantly unaffected by the turmoil. Indeed, the breaking of the third seal sets apart those who trust in God from those who trust in themselves. Today’s devotion teaches us: Those Who Continually Seek The Blessings And Anointing Of Heaven Will Not Be Touched By Earthly Calamities
The colour black has a strong association with darkness and its use as a symbol of death and the evil. The Greek word “zugos” can be interpreted as either a weighing device or a yoke that is put on working animals or slaves. A weighing device used for determining weight seems inconsistent as the focus in v 6 is the exorbitant cost of grain by volume. Therefore, “zugos” as yoke or burden is the preferred interpretation here. Hence, the breaking of the third seal and the appearance of the “zugos” portends a harsh reality for humanity in the days ahead.
The price of wheat and barley have soared exorbitantly. For one litre of wheat; a day’s ration for one person, or three litres of barley; a day’s ration for his horse is now worthed a denarius. And a denarius is the average daily wage of a person. According to historical information, the normal cost of a litre of wheat was about one-eighth of a denarius. In other words, what a person earns in a day that normally feeds a family of eight is now sufficient to feed him alone. Though the cause of inflation is not mentioned, it can be attributed to a combination of famine, war, and irresponsible acts of some nations.
The command not to harm the oil and the wine speaks of an uneven effect across the agricultural industry. While the production of wheat and barley are severely affected, the luxuries; wine and the oil are spared. In essence, the third seal spells economic hardship; a more difficult life for all. Both man and animal are subject to a harsher yoke by working harder while earning lesser. The sparing of wine and oil production implies that there remains a segment in the society that is unaffected by the breaking of the third seal.
THOSE WHO CONTINUALLY SEEK THE BLESSINGS AND ANOINTING OF HEAVEN WILL NOT BE TOUCHED BY EARTHLY CALAMITIES
The two groups of people
In today’s passage, we see two groups of people: The first group comprises those who see only wheat and barley because they cannot afford wine and oil. The second group comprises the nobles and the rich; those who can afford the pleasures of wine and oil. The breaking of the third seal negatively impacts the first group while leaving the second group untouched. At the breaking of the third seal, we see the first group living a more difficult life while the second group continue enjoying life and its many pleasures.
The wine and the oil
In the natural, the wine and oil symbolise emotional and sensory pleasures and we should not indulge in them. But in the Spirit, wine and oil symbolise the blessings and the anointing of heaven (see Psalm 23:5, Joel 2:24). And these are pleasures of the Spirit which we must indulge continually. To indulge in the wine and oil of the Spirit is to commune with God intimately and do His will. The cavalier on the black horse did not damage the oil and the wine because he is called to follow a pattern in heaven. The oil and the wine must never be damaged so that those who desire the heavenly things may continue to live abundantly. Indeed, those who seek the anointing and the blessing of heaven are untouchable, and will not in anyway be affected by natural calamities.
Who are those seeking wheat and barley?
These are those who are always desiring the things of the world, who care not for others but only for themselves. They desire to own more cars, more buildings and bigger businesses for their own enjoyment.
Who are those seeking wine and oil in the Spirit?
These are those who continually desire the righteous attributes of God and to rule with Him. Such seek to acquire greater ability to love, greater wisdom and power to do His work.
What should we do amid economic troubles and hardship?
Jesus taught the people, “Do not worry then, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear for clothing?’ For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” – Matthew 6:31-33
Here Jesus mentioned the two groups: The first group are those who seek wheat and barley are those who constantly worry about: ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear for clothing?’ And the second group are those who continue to desire wine and oil despite economic troubles and hardship. And in seeking to rule with God in His kingdom through His righteous attributes, they will continue to receive “all these things” amid calamities to live abundantly.
When you sense trouble coming over you, take authority over your circumstances by making the below declaration. No matter what happen, seek the oil and the wine, the wheat and barley will follow.
Therefore, I shall keep the commandments of the LORD my God, to walk in His ways and to fear Him. For the LORD my God is bringing me into a good land, a land of brooks of water, of fountains and springs, flowing forth in valleys and hills; a land of wheat and barley, of vines and fig trees and pomegranates, a land of olive oil and honey; a land where I will eat food without scarcity, in which I will not lack anything; a land whose stones are iron, and out of whose hills I can dig copper. When I have eaten and are satisfied, I shall bless the LORD my God for the good land which He has given me. – Deuteronomy 8:6-10