Revelation 8 takes us from silence to trumpets, and the key is the in between. Heaven goes silent in reverence and awe and the earth is filled with the sound and reality of judgment, but in between this we see God not being filled with anger or disappointment over the sin of man, but instead sitting with the prayers of the saints. The trumpets sound by the sovereignty of God, but God has chosen to include in His sovereignty the prayers of the saints, He has invited us to be a part of His plan. The saints are not being judged, but they are part of the judgment. Much like Elijah in 1 Kings, their prayers are stirred by God and part of the movement of God. As the trumpets begin to sound it’s important that we remember, as Romans 11:22 teaches, that in God’s actions there is both kindness and severity. The trumpets sound not because of a lack of prayer but in the abundance of it. They sound not only for judgment but to offer mercy. They are a sign that the end is coming, but they are not the end. But what is most important to remember is that what many sometimes call “the end of the world”, is actually the beginning of Jesus’ kingdom on earth. We should not fear the sound of judgment; rather, we should rejoice at the nearness of the Lamb.