John was told not to write what the seven thunders spoke..He was then given a scroll to eat. What was this scroll and is it related to what John heard. If it is sealed, is there a time when it will be unsealed. How will it be unsealed, by a man or men. Will the two witnesses, in Rev 11, reveal the contents of the little scroll and of what John Heard. If John ate the scroll will he be the one to explain it, is he one of the two witnesses in chapter 11, the next chapter, in the sense that John the Baptist was Elijah..! Are the two witnesses James and John...?
closed as primarily opinion-based by Gone Quiet, bimargulies, Daи♦, Frank Luke, swasheck Nov 13 '13 at 17:39
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To preface, it is necessary to recognize that John's visions in the Revelation are not a strict sequence of events: 1, 2, 3, etc. They aren't chronological, but rather, they weave in and out of each other. Having said this, John's vision in Revelation 10 (the angel with the little scroll) cannot be understood apart from his vision in Revelation 4-5 (the throne, the Lamb, and the scroll).
Revelation 1.1-3 is properly understood as an introduction and summary of the entire book. This introductory summary tells us how John received his 'revelation of Jesus Christ' through a four-stage transmission process.
The revelation goes from God, to Jesus, to an angel, to John. (Revelation 1.1-3 is more or less repeated at the end of the book, in Revelation 22.6-7,16.)
The two scenes in Revelation 4-5 and 10 weave together. Revelation 4-5 has the scene of God giving the revelation to Jesus; the Lamb takes the scroll from God's right hand, stages 1 and 2 in the transmission process. John sees the Lamb open the scroll, one seal at a time. When we arrive at Revelation 10, the scroll, having been opened by the Lamb, now passes hands from the angel to John, stages 3 and 4 in the transmission process.
While the scroll the angel has is called a 'little scroll' (βιβλαριδιον) in Revelation 10.2,9-10, it is also called simply a 'scroll' (βιβλιον) in Revelation 10.8. It is the same scroll from chapters 4-5. As a symbol, the scroll stands in for the 'revelation of Jesus Christ' (from 1.1), what John was receiving through his visions. This symbolic meaning is demonstrated by the fact that Revelation 4-5 and 10 are both based on Ezekiel 1-3, in which Ezekiel sees the throne of God (as Revelation 4) and a scroll in the right hand of God (as Revelation 5), which is given to Ezekiel to eat as a symbol of his prophetic witness (as Revelation 10).
The scroll is central to John's visions, insofar that the scroll is John's visions. We don't need the two witnesses to reveal the contents of the scroll John saw and ate, because the book of Revelation is that scroll, in a manner of speaking.
The little scroll was part of the larger scroll opened by Christ at His ascension to the mountain of God (Rev 4-5). Jesus did not receive tablets as Moses did, but an inheritance document, since He had kept the Law. The little scroll wasn't sealed. Rather than writing down its judgments, John (a "son of thunder") was to speak them immediately, the seven woes spoken by Jesus, bringing destruction upon Jerusalem: seven bowls recapitulating the seven sprinklings of blood on the Day of Atonement. The blood of all the prophets beginning with Abel would be avenged upon her. Many of the images are taken from the destruction of Jericho, the "firstfruits" victory of the Land. Jerusalem would be the first victory of the Church, conquered by a new David. The seven thunders are like the trumpet warnings before the walls came down. The two witnesses are described as Moses and Elijah, the Law and the Prophets, by whose testimony Jerusalem would be judged. In this case, it is the apostolic witness: the testimony of two or three witnesses ("martyrs"). The Law and Prophets flanked Jesus as they did at His transfiguration. The context of Matthew 18:20 is legal testimony, for the purpose of bringing God's judgment (blessings and curses): "For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them."