Towards the end of the age, Revelation describes the four horsemen, who symbolize the terrible events, that will plague the earth just before the return of Jesus Christ. Revelation 6 describes each horse, and each horse has a specific color and symbol, with a meaning that is explained further by looking at Matthew 24. The white horse symbolizes religious deception; the red horse, warfare; the black horse, famine; and the pale horse, death.

The fourth horseman (Revelation 6:7–8), the pale horse, comes after famine in Matthew 24, where Jesus Christ mentions pestilences—disease epidemics (Matthew 24:7). The pale horse is symbolic of the pestilences (the definition of the word, pestilence, used in Matthew 24:7 is: a contagious or infectious epidemic disease that is virulent and devastating) that will plague the earth just before the return of Jesus Christ. Interestingly, the Greek word translated “pale” is chlōros, a greenish color, likely describing either a sickly appearance or the color of decaying flesh. This pale horse will ravage one-quarter of the earth by violence, hunger and “the beasts of the earth” (Revelation 6:8)—A surprising fact is that 75 percent of emerging infectious diseases are transmitted from animals (beasts of the earth) to humans. In recent years we have seen swine flu (from pigs), avian flu (from birds) and Ebola virus (from primates).

With today’s population, we can figure out that these calamities will kill over 1.5 billion people! Given the modern medical technology we have available today, this may seem impossible, yet warnings of devastating global epidemics are appearing with increasing frequency…CONTINUE