Meditation Mondays: The First Trumpet
7 The first angel sounded: And hail and fire followed, mingled with blood, and they were thrown to the earth. And a third of the trees were burned up, and all green grass was burned up.
So let's try to interpret the language John is using but before we do, remember that what we're looking at is total destruction/judgment about Jerusalem. This is the Lord's answer to the cry of the martyrs (Rev. 6:10). Upon the blowing of the first trumpet, we have hail and fire mingled with blood cast upon the earth. Then, we see that a third of the trees were burned up and all green grass was burned up.
Now I think the trees here could be referring to men (although Josephus, the historian of the Jewish Wars speaks to the vegetative devastation caused by the Jewish Wars and this is certainly plausible). I think this vegetative language John is using is referring to men primarily because of Revelation 7:3 and Revelation 9:4:
3 saying, “Do not harm the earth, the sea, or the trees till we have sealed the servants of our God on their foreheads.” (Rev 7:3)
4 They were commanded not to harm the grass of the earth, or any green thing, or any tree, but only those men who do not have the seal of God on their foreheads. (Rev 9:4)
There is a sifting in the judgment of God. Those who were not the elect of God- who did not have the seal of God on their foreheads were to be burned up in God's fierce wrath on Jerusalem.