I've often thought about how fortunate the Nephites were before Christ's birth because they were given pretty exact prophecies about the timing of Christ's birth. The first, of course, was the prophecy tied to Lehi's departure from Jerusalem, that Christ's birth would be 600 years, as recorded in 1 Nephi 19:
8 And behold he cometh, according to the words of the angel, in from the time my father left Jerusalem.And then they had Samuel's 5-year prophecy as recorded in Helaman 14:
And behold, he said unto them: Behold, I give unto you a sign; for five years more cometh, and behold, then cometh the Son of God to redeem all those who shall believe on his name.These prophecies were pretty exact, within a year, as recorded in 3 Nephi 1.
Now going back to Revelation 8:1, I believe this is our most exact prophecy we have as far as timing. Some have speculated exactly what the 1/2 hour of silence means, but it obviously is 1/2 hour of the Lord's time, as 1/2 hour of man's time is too insignificant. We know from Peter that one day of the Lord's time is one thousand years of Earth time:
2 Peter 3:8 But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a , and a as one day.Using that formula, 1/2 hour of the Lord's time would be approximately 21 years. Of course we can't be precise to the year as the Nephites could be because we don't know precisely when the 7th seal opened. We have good cause to believe that each of the 7 seals represents one thousand years of the Earth's recorded history, as taught in D&C 77:
So, approximately 21 years after the opening of the 7th seal, we will begin to see the worst of the worst that is going to happen before Christ comes in glory. Revelation 8-12 describe the scourges upon the earth with the blowing of the 7 trumpets. We don't know how long the events of each of the trumpets will last, but the torment in the 5th trumpet will last 5 months, and the 6th trumpet has some definite time periods, including the siege of Jerusalem for 42 months, during which the 2 witnesses will be prophesying.
It just struck me tonight how very close we are to the beginning of the 7 trumpets. Assuming the 7th seal "opened" in the year 2000, the 1/2 hour of silence would come to an end in about 2021. That's a mere 5 years away.