No. I am not aware of any system of understanding Revelation that puts the 7th seal before the 6th. The 6th is either viewed as contemporaneous or preceding the 7th.
Two Major Views
NOTE: The following discussion is from a futurist perspective of Revelation.
Robert L. Thomas discusses two major views on Revelation (note, these are not the only views, but are two very common views), the Recapitulation view and the Telescopic View.1 Recapitulation views the series of sevens as essentially parallel (not necessarily one for one, though normally so, but at least that the events of the 7 Seals occur in some parallel time frame with that of the 7 Trumpets and 7 Bowls). Telescopic views the series as consecutive (each set follows the preceding set), that is, the 7th Seal "contains" the 7 Trumpet judgements within it, and the 7th Trumpet "contains" the 7 Bowl judgments in them, similar to a spyglass type telescope that collapses for storage (hence the name telescopic view). Some try to merge the two ideas (Thomas sees hermeneutical issues with this; 56-57), and both views often recognize textual intercalations (narrative within Revelation that are inserted between the main events of the three series of sevens that may or may not be directly related to those series at the point of insertion).
Notice that if a one-for-one relation is upheld, then it does not answer your question. For the events noted in the 6th seal appear to parallel events of the 7th Trumpet and 7th Bowl, not the 6th of those series. This is recognized as an issue with recapitulation of this nature (Thomas, 49).
It is common to associate the 6th Seal (6:12-14) with the 4th Trumpet (8:12) regarding the effects of sun/moon/stars, either that the 4th Trumpet must precede the darkening of the 6th Seal (Thomas, 49), or the reference in the 6th refers to the events of the 4th. Also, Thomas notes a recapitulation view that parallels the 6th of each sequence.2
The most common way to view the 7th Seal in this view is a symbolic parallel to the final rest after the judgments. This would be one possible reconciliation to your question that keeps the 7th after the 6th. However, Thomas notes a weakness of this resolution is that it makes the 7th seal entirely different in character from not only the other 6 seals, but the other two series of 7, all of which contain some reference to judgment (Thomas, 50). This and other issues cause Thomas to hold that recapitulation is not likely the best view (Thomas, 52).
One-for-one (timeline is exactly parallel)
Seals 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th
Trumpets 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th
Bowls 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th
Generally (timeline is roughly parallel, not necessarily 1 to 1)
While Thomas holds this view, it is recognized that it suffers from the challenge of explaining the events noted in the 6th Seal which appear to parallel final events (per Mt 24:29). However, Thomas does note there are arguments against seeing these two events as being the same (Thomas, 55). He sees telescoping as overall better supported than recapitulation, especially in chronological relations, some of which are very clear in the text (Thomas, 58). In the telescopic view, Seals 1-6 are generally viewed as "the 'Little Apocalypse' of Christ," the "birth pains" (Mt 24:8) that precede the last events (Thomas, 53), and so in specific reply to your question, the events of Seal 6 are different (but with some similarities) from that of the later events that are noted of similar type. So Seal 6 is not final.
Strictly speaking, the telescopic view Thomas espouses holds that:
So the seals and trumpets occur one after the other in numerical
sequence and are non-cumulative, i.e., each one finishes before the
next one begins (59).
But the bowls, though consecutive, are viewed with cumulative effects (Thomas, 59; largely based off Rev 16:2 [1st Bowl] effects still noted in 10-11 [5th Bowl]), and so do not finish "before the next one begins" as the seals and trumpets.
Seals 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th
Trumpets |1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th|
Bowls |1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th|
Modified Telescopic View
I personally lean toward a modified telescopic view, with the further clarification that each seal/trumpet/bowl contains all the following within them.3 Thus all the judgement events are "contained" within the 1st Seal, and each successive event contains all the following ones.
This allows for both consecutive events to be occurring from one to the next, while also allowing for not so much a recapitulation of events (though one might view it that way), but rather a forecasting of events to come.
That being so, note how this can resolve your particular question about how the 6th Seal seems "final" yet not final. Viewed in this method, Rev 6:12-17 states events that do occur within the 6th seal, but they also happen to be a forecasting of events that do not actually take place until the later Trumpet/Bowl judgments, and so the 6th seal contains a summary of events yet to occur, and also possibly the events specifically of chapter 7 with the sealing of the 144,000. In some ways, the 6th Seal would be similar in nature to the 5th. In the 5th, the robes were given to those already slain; in the 6th, the seal is given to some still alive. In other words, the 5th and 6th seals are both doing present effects to certain classes of people in preparation for the events forecasted to come from the 7 Trumpet/Bowl judgments.
I hesitate to make any direct correspondence to events noted in Rev 6:12-17 with later events, though there are some clear parallels to many of the events of the 7th bowl (Rev 16:18-20), yet some might also relate to events as early as the 1st Trumpet—is the blood falling from the sky (8:7) what makes the moon appear as blood (6:12), and the smoke of the burning (8:7) what darkens the light of the sun (6:12)? I'm not committed to that parallel, but at the same time, it seems worth pondering, especially if Rev 6:12-17 has any chronological relationship to the events noted within itself (they may not, they may just be summarizing "events" that are coming). If the 1st Trumpet does parallel, the Mt 24:29 reference to timing of the sun and moon events would then place the "tribulation of those days," which occurs immediately before the sun/moon event according to Matthew, at the time frame of the first 4 Seals. That may or may not be valid.
Such a chronological parallel, however, with this scheme need not be so fixed, because the events of Rev 6:12-17 need only occur sometime within the 7th Seal and the following 7 Trumpet/Bowl events, since all are contained within the 6th seal anyway.
| 2nd Seal |
| 3rd Seal |
| 4th Seal |
| 5th Seal |
| 6th Seal |
| 7th Seal |
| 1st Trumpet |
| 2nd Trumpet |
| 3rd Trumpet |
| 4th Trumpet |
| 5th Trumpet |
| 6th Trumpet |
| 7th Trumpet |
| 1st Bowl |
| 2nd Bowl |
| 3rd Bowl |
| 4th Bowl |
| 5th Bowl |
| 6th Bowl |
| 7th Bowl |
In short, to my knowledge, no interpretation places the 7th Seal prior to the 6th Seal. The sequence is usually recognized as valid at least within the sequence itself (how it relates across the sequences is what is variously interpreted), and at best might be viewed in some recapitulation views as contemporaneous.
However, there are enough views on Revelation out there that someone may unearth a view that does try to do exactly what you are asking about, some reordering of the sequence (though if such exists, I would question that such a view is the best understanding of the text, simply because the sequence then becomes meaningless—it would become difficult to explain why the sequence is there at all).
1 Robert L. Thomas, "The Structure of the Apocalypse:
Recapitulation or Progression?" Master’s Seminary Journal 4 (1993), 45-66. The following discussion of the two main views uses this source extensively.
2 In n.21, the source listed by Thomas is Andrew E. Steinmann, “The Tripartite Structure of the Sixth Seal, the Sixth Trumpet, and the Sixth Bowl of John’s Apocalypse” (Rev 6:12–7:17; 9:13–11:14; 16:12–16),” JETS 35/1 (March 1992).
3 While there may be others who understand Revelation this way, the idea expressed comes from my own thinking through of the issues involved with correlating events. Eschatology is a large field of study, and I have not entirely settled on specifics for everything, so consider what is given as preliminary ideas (I may change my mind about things in the future).