The End of the Fifth Trumpet

Hi can you help? Traditionally the 150 years of the fifth trumpet ends on 27th July 1449, but Constantine XIII or Deacozes was emperor from January 1449. We state it was from 27th of July 1449 according to Josiah Litch. Can you help? MB.


Dear MB,

It is not simply Litch who cites historians for this fulfillment, but also Smith in Thoughts on Daniel and the Revelation. Smith acknowledges that some historians disagree with July 27, 1449, but insists he has chosen the best historians:

“In the year 1449, John Palaeologus, the Greek emperor, died, but left no children to inherit his throne, and Constantine, his brother, succeeded to it.*** But he would not venture to ascend the throne without the consent of Amurath, the Turkish sultan. He therefore sent ambassadors to ask his consent, and obtained it before he presumed to call himself sovereign.

“Let this historical fact be carefully examined in connection with the prediction given above. This was not a violent assault made on the Greeks, by which their empire was overthrown and their independence taken away, but simply a voluntary surrender of that independence into the hands of the Turks. The authority and supremacy of the Turkish power was acknowledged when Constantine virtually said, ‘I cannot reign unless you permit.’

“The four angels were loosed for an hour, a day, a month, and a year, a to slay the third part of men. This period, during which Ottoman supremacy was to exist, amounts to three hundred ninety-one years and fifteen days. Thus: A prophetic year is three hundred and sixty prophetic days, or three hundred and sixty literal years; a prophetic month, thirty prophetic days, is thirty literal years; one prophetic day is one literal year; and an hour, or the twenty-fourth part of a prophetic day.

“But although the four angels were thus loosed by the voluntary submission of the Greeks, yet another doom awaited the seat of empire. Amurath, the sultan to whom the submission of Constantine XIII was made, and by whose permission he reigned in Constantinople, soon after died, and was succeeded in the empire, in 1451, by Mohammed II, who set his heart on securing Constantinople as the seat of his empire.

“He accordingly made preparations for besieging and taking the city. The siege commenced on the 6th of April, 1453, and ended in the capture of the city, and the death of the last of the Constantines, on the 16thday of May following. And the eastern city of the Caesars became the seat of the Ottoman empire.

*** “Some historians have given this date as 1448, but the best authorities sustain the date here given, 1449. See Chamber’s Encyclopedia, art., Palaeologus.” Thoughts on Daniel and the Revelation, 508–509.

I agree with Smith for a prophetic reason. First let me quote Smith once more. Smith identifies the starting of the one hundred fifty year prophecy of the fifth trumpet:

“VERSE 10–11:. And they had tails like unto scorpions, and there were stings in their tails: and their power was to hurt men five months. And they had a king over them, which is the angel of the bottomless pit, whose name in the Hebrew tongue is Abaddon, but in the Greek tongue hath his name Apollyon.

“Thus far, Keith has furnished us with illustrations of the sounding of the first five trumpets. But we must now take leave of him, and proceed to the application of the new feature of the prophecy here introduced; namely, the prophetic periods.

“Their Power Was to Hurt Men Five Months.—1. The question arises, What men were they to hurt five months?—Undoubtedly the same they were afterward to slay (see verse 15); ‘The third part of men,’ or third of the Roman empire,—the Greek division of it.

“2. When were they to begin their work of torment? The 11th verse answers the question. (1) ‘They had a king over them.’ From the death of Mohammed until near the close of the thirteenth century, the Mohammedans were divided into various factions under several leaders, with no general civil government extending over them all. Near the close of the thirteenth century, Othman founded a government which has since been known as the Ottoman government, or empire, which grew until it extended over all the principal Mohammedan tribes, consolidating them into one grand monarchy.

“(2) The character of the king. ‘Which is the angel of the bottomless pit.’ An angel signifies a messenger, a minister, either good or bad, and not always a spiritual being. ‘The angel of the bottomless pit,’ or chief minister of the religion which came from thence when it was opened. That religion is Mohammedanism, and the sultan is its chief minister. ‘The Sultan, or grand Seignior, as he is indifferently called, is also Supreme Caliph, or high priest, uniting in his person the highest spiritual dignity with the supreme secular authority.’—World As It Is, 361.

“(3) His name. In Hebrew, ‘Abaddon,’ the destroyer; in Greek, ‘Apollyon,’ one that exterminates, or destroys. Having two different names in two languages, it is evident that the character, rather than the name of the power, is intended to be represented. If so, as expressed in both languages, he is a destroyer. Such has always been the character of the Ottoman government.

“But when did Othman make his first assault on the Greek empire?—According to Gibbon, Decline and Fall, etc., ‘Othman first entered the territory of Nicomedia on the 27th day of July, 1299.’

“The calculations of some writers have gone upon the supposition that the period should begin with the foundation of the Ottoman empire; but this is evidently an error; for they were not only to have a king over them, but were to torment men five months. But the period of torment could not begin before the first attack of the tormentors, which was, as above stated, July 27, 1299.

“The calculation which follows, founded on this starting-point, was made and published in a work entitled, Christ’s Second Coming, etc., by J. Litch, in 1838.

“‘And their power was to hurt men five months.’ Thus far their commission extended, to torment by constant depredations, but not politically to kill them. ‘Five months,’ thirty days to a month, give us one hundred and fifty days; and these days, being symbolic, signify one hundred and fifty years. Commencing July 27, 1299, the one hundred and fifty years reach to 1449. During that whole period the Turks were engaged in an almost perpetual warfare with the Greek empire, but yet without conquering it. They seized upon and held several of the Greek provinces, but still Greek independence was maintained in Constantinople. But in 1449, the termination of the one hundred and fifty years, a change came, the history of which will be found under the succeeding trumpet.” Ibid., 506–507.

It is not simply that the date of July 27, 1449 has historical confirmation, but also that the date is consistent with the previous time prophecy. July 27, 1449 fits for the end of the 150 years of the fifth trumpet, as well as the beginning of the three hundred ninety-one year fifteen days of Revelation 9:15.

Sister White confirmed the prediction of Litch and the Millerites:

“At the very time specified, Turkey, through her ambassadors, accepted the protection of the allied powers of Europe, and thus placed herself under the control of Christian nations. The event exactly fulfilled the prediction. (See Appendix.) When it became known, multitudes were convinced of the correctness of the principles of prophetic interpretation adopted by Miller and his associates, and a wonderful impetus was given to the advent movement. Men of learning and position united with Miller, both in preaching and in publishing his views, and from 1840 to 1844 the work rapidly extended.” The Great Controversy, 335.

Men have desired to open a door to push their foolish ideas about some end of the world fulfillment of the trumpets and in so doing they attack the pioneer position on the trumpets, probably without recognizing that the fulfillment of Revelation 9:15, was when the first angel’s message is located in history. We have been warned about trying to move the three messages, but men still blindly attempt to do so.

“The proclamation of the first, second, and third angels’ messages has been located by the word of Inspiration. Not a peg or pin is to be removed. No human authority has any more right to change the location of these messages than to substitute the New Testament for the Old.” Counsels to Writers and Editors, 26.

The passage in The Great Controversy is not the only place where Sister White endorses the pioneer position of the trumpets. She also teaches that we are not to spend time discussing theories that destroy established prophetic truth:

“There must be no long discussions, presenting new theories in regard to the prophecies which God has already made plain.” Evangelism, 199.

The pioneer position of the trumpets was made plain and endorsed by inspiration through Ellen White. Notice what she says about the message of 1843:

“We have, as had John, a message to bear of the things which we have seen and heard. God is not giving us a new message. We are to proclaim the message that in 1843 and 1844 brought us out of the other churches.” Review and Herald, January 19, 1905.

The message that was proclaimed in 1843 that brought the people out of the churches was the message illustrated on the 1843 Pioneer Chart, which in Early Writings page 74, we are told “I have seen that the 1843 chart was directed by the hand of the Lord”. The 1843 Pioneer Chart includes the message of the trumpets of Revelation 8 and 9, including the time prophecies of the fifth and sixth trumpet! The fact that some historians date the ascension of Deacozes in January 1449 is simply a testimony to Satan’s efforts to destroy the foundations of Adventism. Hope this helps. Jeff.

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