Revelation 7:9 – 8:2
The Great Multitude in White Robes
9After this I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands. 10And they cried out in a loud voice: “Salvation belongs to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb.”
11All the angels were standing around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures. They fell down on their faces before the throne and worshiped God, 12saying: “Amen! Praise and glory and wisdom and thanks and honor and power and strength be to our God for ever and ever. Amen!”
13Then one of the elders asked me, “These in white robes—who are they, and where did they come from?” 14I answered, “Sir, you know.” And he said, “These are they who have come out of the great tribulation; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. 15Therefore, “they are before the throne of God and serve him day and night in his temple; and he who sits on the throne will shelter them with his presence.
16‘Never again will they hunger; never again will they thirst. The sun will not beat down on them,’ nor any scorching heat. 17For the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd; ‘he will lead them to springs of living water.’ ‘And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.’ ”
When the great multitude in white robes appears before the throne in heaven, it means the rapture has taken place. This seems to follow the sixth seal but is not part of it.
Along with the sealing of the 144000 in the same chapter, the rapture of the great multitude is placed between the sixth and the seventh seal. When the seventh seal is opened, there is silence in heaven for about half an hour but there is no further description about what happens when the seventh seal is opened or it’s significance.
It is likely that the sealing of the 144000 Jews and the rapture of the great multitude are linked to the opening of the seventh seal.
In the literary style of Revelation, the descriptor follows the naming of the first six seals but with the last one, it is preceded by it’s descriptor. This is also the case with the trumpets.
The Lamb is the only one worthy to open the scroll which is more than likely a chapter in the book of life containing the names of the Sons of God. (there is also another chapter for the ungodly heathen pagan nations that is opened after the millennium at the Great White Throne) When the seventh seal is opened, the scroll is opened and the Sons of God are revealed. This seems to be the event that leads to the Great Multitude appearing in heaven as a result of the rapture and the first resurrection. This must also be the point that Christ returns to redeem the Church.
As soon as the seventh seal is opened, in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, the seventh trumpet sounds and the dead in Christ are resurrected and the living believers are raptured to meet Christ in the clouds and so will remain with Christ forever.
18I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. 19For the creation waits in eager expectation for the children of God to be revealed. 20For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope 21that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God.
22We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. 23Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption to sonship, the redemption of our bodies.
For creation waits in eager expectation for the Children of God to be revealed. Once the Lamb has opened the scroll which is a part of the Book of Life, the names of the Children of God will be revealed.
We should eagerly await for our adoption to sonship which co-insides with the redemption of our bodies.