~ connecting lives ~
The fourth seal can be found in Revelation 6:7-8 and reads as follows…
“So I looked, and behold, a pale horse. And the name of him who sat on it was Death, and Hades followed with him. And power was given to them over a fourth of the earth, to kill with sword, with hunger, with death, and by the beasts of the earth” (Revelation 6:8).
In the original language the word “pale” here denotes the color of blighted plants, certainly an unnatural color for a horse. This symbol must refer to the work of persecution and death carried on by Christians against each other in those Dark Ages.
No wonder the ages were dark beginning about 538 and until the days of reformation and religious liberty changed the character of the western world. Even today there are times when the true principles of religious freedom are forgotten. The Scripture says: “Render...to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s” (Matthew 22:21).
We are not to mix the responsibilities of the spiritual church and political state government. The true Christian will be loyal to his state government, but he will not forsake the plain commandments, teachings, and guidance of God as revealed in the Bible, for decrees and acts of men.
Religious liberty and freedom mean not only that I demand for myself freedom to worship God according to the dictates of my conscience, but that I demand it also for the other man whose conscience may be entirely different from mine.
If God, who could use force, does not see fit to do so and to compel men to follow the truth of His gospel, certainly we human beings, limited as we all are, especially in our knowledge of the hearts of others, have no right to impose our views by force upon our neighbor. Every man must give account of himself to God, as we read in the Holy Scripture (Romans 14:12).