Revelation 10:1-11

The angel and the little book

1 Then I saw another powerful angel. He was coming down from heaven. He had a cloud all round him, like his clothes. There was a rainbow above his head. His face was like the sun and his legs shone like fire. 2 He had a little book in his hand and it was open. He put his right foot on the sea and he put his left foot on the land. 3 Then he shouted with a loud voice, like a lion that roars. When he shouted, seven loud voices answered him. They were like the noise of thunder. 4 When the seven voices of thunder spoke, I was ready to write. But I heard a voice that came from heaven. The voice said to me, ‘Keep secret what the seven voices of thunder have said. Do not write it down.’

5 Then I looked again at the angel who stood with one foot on the sea and his other foot on the land. He raised his right hand towards heaven. 6 He made a strong promise by the name of God, who lives for ever. He created heaven, the earth and the sea, as well as everything that is in them. The angel said, ‘There is no more time to wait! 7 Now is the time when the seventh angel will make a sound with his trumpet. Then God will quickly finish what he wants to do. This has been a secret, but he told it long ago to the prophets who were his servants.’

8 Then I heard again the voice that spoke to me from heaven. He said, ‘Go to the angel who is standing with one foot on the sea and his other foot on the land. Go and take the book that is open in his hand.’ 9 So I went to the angel. I asked him to give me the little book. He said to me, ‘Take the book and then eat it. It will be very sweet like honey in your mouth. But it will hurt your stomach like bad food.’ 10 So I took the little book from the angel's hand and I ate it. It was as sweet as honey in my mouth. But when I had eaten the book, it hurt my stomach. 11 Then the voice said to me, ‘You must continue to tell God's message to people. You must say what will happen to people from everywhere in the world. They are the people of many nations, and people who speak many languages, and also their kings.’

10:11Other verses in the Bible tell us about prophets who ‘ate’ messages from God. Then those prophets told God's message to other people. See Ezekiel 2:8-3:3; Jeremiah 15:16. Now John must tell God's message to many people. The message about Jesus is good news, so it has a sweet taste. But if people do not agree with God's message, it will become like bad food in their stomachs.