The star John saw that fell from heaven was an angel as angels are sometimes called stars in scripture. This angel having the key to open the bottomless pit could be the same angel we read about in Revelation 20:1-3 that God gives the key to that opens the bottomless pit where Satan is bound. When the bottomless pit was opened locust came up out of it. In reference to a smoke these locust would be to numerous to number, Judges 7:12, and look like dark smoke as they rise and swarm if you saw them from a distance. Once they became closer to your vision you would see that it wasn’t smoke, but a hoard of locust. Their attributes of what God is purposing them for is what gives them their power to sting as in tormenting those who have not the seal of God on them. They are compared as scorpions that literally sting using the power of their tails as they raise them above their head.
God gives specific instructions to keep their focus on what they are being released to accomplish for Gods purpose over the next five months. There is a reason why they are not allowed to hurt the grass or any green thing including trees as we will see in the next few verses. They are only allowed to torment, but not kill those people who do not have Gods seal on them. The torment will be so tremendous that those without Gods seal will want to kill themselves, but God holds His hand against it.
The locusts are actually the fallen angels from heaven that refused to stay in the limits of Gods authority before the flood in Noah’s day, Genesis 6:1, 2; Job 2:1; 1 Peter 3:18-20; 2Peter 2:4; Jude 1:6. These disobedient angels are different then the ones that Satan draws a third of to himself. God has reserved them and set them bound in outer darkness far from the brightness of His glorious realm, or as scripture says chained and bound them into a bottomless pit.
This pit could not be a part of the actual earth as the pits of earth have bottoms so this would be in the spiritual sense of the area of darkness that has no physical location in the Universe. These angels have been spared for the particular purpose that God has for them as they are released by God to torment man for five months then their final judgment comes at the end when they are cast into the lake of fire. These could be the very same angels Jesus went down to preach to before He ascended up to heaven, 1 Peter 3:19, 20.
Angels can do miraculous supernatural things and unfortunately fallen angels can still do many of these same things, as they were created with these abilities. A fallen angel can only attack someone if they have spiritual authority, grounds and rights to do so like that of Satan tormenting Job as it’s Gods authority that uses them to inflict torment on those during His wrath.
They have interaction with humans spiritually as in dreams and visions and also can take on physical appearances before men like that of Lot who saw two men stand before him, Genesis 19:1. These angels will take on the form of locust, but given instruction by God not to hurt the green grass or the trees.
The demonic angels that appear to look like a swarm of locust coming up out of the ground in the numerous numbering of them is likened unto horses prepared for battle, Judges 7:12. The description given in vs. 7-10 is also likened unto ancient battle horses that were decked out with a full plate of armor that helped protect them like their riders from swords, axes, maces, and lances during battle.
The armor, similar to their rider, had a full head piece including a plume of horse hair coming out of the crown of the helmet. The horses face pieces would also be fashioned like that of a man’s except it would be extended to cover their mouth giving them an appearance as having sharp teeth in the design.
The coming approach of these angels would sound like that of chariots and horses running into battle. It’s like when a storm develops you hear the thunder in the distant and when the storm gets closer the louder the thunder becomes. Being they are transformed into locust the sounds of their wings will be similar as a thundering noise.
The tails and the sting of their tail are compared to a scorpion as the torment they will inflict on men will feel like that of a scorpion’s sting. A regular locust has no stingers in its tail nor can they bite or break the skin of a person, but a locust on a larger scale can bite, but not able to penetrate the skin deep enough to draw blood. Scripture says they have stings in their tail so it would be apparent that these are not normal locust. There would be much torment on a person by the number of locust that land on them.
Apollyon is king over the bottomless pit that was given the key meaning Gods authority and power was given him to open the pit and gives these angels that are transformed into locust their authority to go forth and torment men for five months. Apollyon means destroyer in Greek and destruction in Hebrew as he is known as Abaddon in Hebrew. He is an angel of God that He uses throughout the OT and here in vs. 1, 11 to bring about Gods commands when it comes to the destruction of people of disobedience, Exodus 12:23; 2Kings 6:14-18; Proverbs 15:11, 12; Jeremiah 4:7; Daniel 10:13; 1 Corinthians 10:10.
The torment of this chastisement was so great that men would seek death, but not find it and desire to die and death will flee from them as God holds His hands against it.
There are three woes mentioned as each one is God’s call to repent and turn back to Him before the door of Salvation is closed forever when Christ returns.
The four horns of the golden altar before God in His tabernacle on earth use to be sprinkled with blood from the animal sacrifice to cleanse and purify it from the sins of the Israelite’s, Leviticus 4:7, 16:18. The golden altar being in the tabernacle of God before His throne in heaven is that of the four gospels of grace. The voice coming out of the four horns is Jesus who is the only one worthy of opening the seven seals and sending out the seven angels with a trumpet sound which means one sent out by Gods great power and authority.
Jesus now speaks to the angel with the sixth trumpet and commands him to let loose the four angels that are bound in the Euphrates River that have been prepared by God for the hour, day, month and year of His angry indignation against those who follow after other gods. The four angels are Gods warring angels who will war against the enemies of God killing a third of mankind that refuse to repent.
John knows the number of the horsemen as he heard the number to be two hundred million. The four angels will take each to them five hundred thousand horsemen or Gods warring angels and since there are four angels that lead this army I would think they would go out to the four corners of the earth as they kill a third of the earths population.
Each horseman has a breastplate of fire, jacinth and brimstone. The breastplate represents the heart of these two hundred million warring angels that are being lead by the four angels as they are all subject to Gods will and purpose. The horse’s heads being likened unto a lions head represents strength, predatory and majesty of a ruler or king as being God in His fierce power of this particular chastisement on men. The fire, smoke and brimstone literally proceeds out of the mouths of these warring angels as we read in the literal fire of God in Exodus 9:23; 2 Kings 1:10; Numbers 11:1; 16:35; Leviticus 21:9; Psalms 104:4. By these three that are fire, smoke and brimstone a third of mankind will be killed.
Here is the importance of the area of the Euphrates River and what the four angels were prepared for to battle against. Surrounding the Euphrates River are four Assyrian Babylonian type countries that make up one third of the worlds population. These countries are Syria, Turkey, Iran and Iraq (Babylon) that make up parts of the old Assyrian nations.
Assur, son of Shem and Grandson of Noah, defiled himself against God and was made god over the Assyrian nations he founded as the Assyrians called him Asnapper and set up monuments to worship him and named their capitol after Assur, Ezra 4:10, Nahum 3:1-19. You will need to do a more extended study in who Assur was and how these four nations came to be as it would be to lengthy to add to this particular study in Revelations.
The power was in their (Assur) mouth from the beginning as Noah and his sons were faithful to God teaching their families through the power and authority of Gods spoken word in all truths. From the time of Assur falling away from God unto even present day the power is in their (Assyrian/Babylonian type nations) tail as their prophets teach lies, Isaiah 9:12-16, leading the people of these nations to fall prey to worship devils and set up their various idols that are made by hand that are abominations to God. This is similar to the judgment of Ephraim in Isaiah 9:8-21 and the destruction of Assyria in Isaiah 10:1-19.
These two hundred million warring angels that are lead east, west, north and south through these four nations by the four angels who have been prepared will literally strike down one third of the world’s population. God only needs to speak those things into existence as the warring angels breathe real fire out of their mouths as we read in other scriptures to this fact to consume those who refuse to repent.
This comes out to be two hundred million of a seven billion population that is in the world today that will be killed by these warring angels. These four nations refuse to repent of their murders, sorceries, fornication and thefts against God and his faithful servants that have been martyred and will continue to die a martyr’s death for the sake of the witness and testimony of Jesus they carry through out these nations.