In the Book of Revelation, a mighty angel calls out with a loud voice like a roaring lion. At that time, there were seven thunders which seem similar to the seven seals and seven trumpets, all containing messages of judgment:

Revelation 10:4: "When the seven peals of thunder had spoken, I was about to write; and I heard a voice from heaven saying, 'Seal up the things which the seven peals of thunder have spoken and do not write them.'"

This appears to be the only instance where some of the message is to remain concealed. Something analogous occurred in the Book of Daniel where the prophet was told to refrain from writing certain words because they could not be recorded at that time:

Daniel 12:4: “But as for you, Daniel, conceal these words and seal up the book until the end of time; many will go back and forth, and knowledge will increase.”

Can we know why John was not allowed to reveal what he heard?

  • @ Xeno I wrote a question last week on the seven thunders . For years I have been telling people in my church it had something ( possibly ) to do with the one thing Jesus said he didn't know. I just finished reading your post of 2021. We came to the exact conclusion. I think you know the odds of that are nill without Devine intervention. I thought I was the only one on the planet that presumed that possibilty. Any way we can correspond as I have only been on this site a week +.
    – RHPclass79
    Commented Nov 27, 2023 at 3:05

3 Answers 3


What Jesus said to His followers then is available to His followers now.

Jesus told the apostles in Acts 1:7

"It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority"

and through them to all Christians.

But I think this is not only for times and dates, but for all the details for the end times.

The Revelation was written by John for it to be read by the followers of Christ. The main idea on obfuscating prophecies about the future is that Christians should not focus on the end times, but on their lives and on taking the Good News to all the part of the world. They also should always be ready for meeting with Christ.

The prophecies are told to warn and give hope and not to reveal the future in detail. This is why I think that John was not allowed to reveal what He heard.

  • 1
    +1 Welcome! and please stick around :)
    – user35953
    Commented Aug 5, 2021 at 14:14
  • 1
    @Leonard A few have told me: "We don't need to know that." I disagree. Colossians 3:2 reads: "Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth." Had I not searched for the meaning of many topics, I can honestly say I would have stagnated in Christ. Every word in the Bible has (often great) significance. When you diligently pull at those strands, God will help you find the answers (seek and you will find...). I find it very interesting that God has recorded silencing the meaning of the 7 peals of thunder; the reason why is certain to provide great scriptural insight.
    – Xeno
    Commented Aug 7, 2021 at 16:53
  • @Xeno I love that you set "your mind on the things above". This is what every Christian should do: study on the scriptures and ponder on them.
    – Leonard
    Commented Aug 9, 2021 at 9:13
  • @TonyChan Thanks! I'll try. :)
    – Leonard
    Commented Aug 9, 2021 at 9:14
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    @Leonard I understand what you meant and didn't take it the wrong way. I probably should have phrased those responses by a few, "we don't need to know that" a bit differently. That particular reaction (something that you did not say) often originates with those whose faith in, and knowledge of, the Bible leaves much to be desired. They seem terrified that something might "rock their boat." The rest of us are seeking more, unwilling to accept merely a superficial view of Scripture. Doing so allows us to discover great truths that had heretofore been completely obscured. Thanks!
    – Xeno
    Commented Aug 9, 2021 at 18:47

I have a more basic question arising out of this text. With what and how would John be writing things down? Does it imply that he was not in heaven? That it was what could be called an open vision, while he was on earth, and that he had earthly writing instruments? He would have needed a lot of parchment if so! If he was in heaven is this simply a way of conveying that he would remember things?

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    Experiencing a vision of heaven while "in spirit" doesn't mean that one is actually in heaven, any more than the ancient Hebrew prophets were actually in the future when they had their visions. Commented Feb 21, 2023 at 0:22
  • This does not really answer the question. If you have a different question, you can ask it by clicking Ask Question. To get notified when this question gets new answers, you can follow this question. Once you have enough reputation, you can also add a bounty to draw more attention to this question. - From Review
    – agarza
    Commented Feb 21, 2023 at 1:21
  • If you have basic questions arising from the text in question, you would need to post those as individual questions. Listing questions does not constitute an answer to this question. This site is not for comments, but for specific answers to specific questions, so if you can give an answer, that would be good.
    – Anne
    Commented Mar 1, 2023 at 14:18

I'm going to quote from my own book on this one;

The voice of seven thunders would have to be God's voice, of course, the expression of God's will (since "seven" is the number indicating "belonging to God"). The command sounds a little strange, not because of the secrecy (we expect God to have secrets) but because it prompts the question "Why is John hearing these words in the first place, if he's not allowed to report them?" There must be something we're intended to learn from the very fact that the thunders have spoken, regardless of the content. The most plausible explanation is that they are expressing God's will for judgement, which will take effect at the sounding of the seventh trumpet. This is then reflected in the angel's announcement following what he hears, and we have no "need to know" about the details. Though we might be seeing some of them being fulfilled in the later chapters.

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