Revelations from Fear TWD: Decoding the Fence Message

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Revelations from Fear TWD: Decoding the Fence Message

Episode 4 of Fear the Walking Dead had an action-packed ending and some moments of suspense when Madison left her now-fenced-in neighborhood, but something that happened during a quieter moment earlier in the show caught my eye–a message written on the fence that you can see  in the above photograph.

 

The message reads “Rev 21:4” and is presumably a reference to Revelations 21:4, which in the King James Version of the Bible reads,

 

And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.

If you’re very, very perceptive, that text might be a little familiar because it appeared on one of the signs that Madison passed by when she was exploring outside the neighborhood during episode 104 as well.

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What does the text on the fence on Episode 4 of FTWD mean? And who put it there?

Let’s talk about the second question first.

We don’t know who made the sign or the numbers and letters on the fence, of course. But I believe that it was likely the same person or at least the same group of people.

 

After all, there are many, many, many verses in the Bible that someone could find meaning in during what could be perceived as apocalyptic times. What are the chances of two unrelated people so close to one another being moved enough by the same verse to leave a reference to it?

 

If it was the same person or people who wrote the sign and left the message on the gate, it’s very significant because it means it was either a soldier who wrote both or that someone who is living in the community has been outside besides Madison because the letters and numbers are inside the fence, not outside of it.

 

Now, what does Revelations 21:4 mean in the Fear the Walking Dead Universe?

 

It all depends on how you look at it.

 

Many Christians think about the book of Revelations when they think about the second coming or rapture, so you can read the message as one of hope. It could be someone’s way of saying not to worry about the suffering that’s happening now because despite the fact that the end of the world is coming, everyone will be going on to a better place soon enough.

 

That seemed to be what Susan was expressing in her letter to Patrick where she talks about what’s unfolding with the undead as being something positive and overdue–a cleansing of some kind.

 

But there is a much, much darker way to read the passage.

 

You can also interpret the passage as meaning that the salvation of mankind is not being whisked away to some divine paradise but rather becoming a walker.

Let’s look at the verse again:

And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.

Walkers don’t cry tears. They cannot die because they are already dead. They feel no sorrow. They feel no pain because their former selves have passed away.

 

If you interpret the text this way, the messages are an odd sort of warning. Perhaps a soldier has realized everyone is infected and is spreading the word? Are they saying, “The end is here, but you won’t end up in paradise. You’ll end up like the dead?”

Everything becomes even more compelling when you study the shadow formed by scriptural reference as seen in this image:

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Looks a little like the word beast doesn’t it? Satan is commonly referred to as “the beast” in Revelations. So is “the beast” referring to the walkers that now wander the streets or to Satan himself?

I would say no.

I think the true beast, the true thing that needs to be feared is the man who so calmly hits golf balls off of the stolen welcome mat of  some unknown homeowner who has now died. The true thing to be feared is Lieutenant Moyers and the rest of the National Guard–the men who Daniel ominously was referring to when he quoted his father, saying,

 

Men do these things not because of evil. They do evil things because of fear.

 

In the final moments of Episode 4, Travis finally saw signs of the presence of this beast when gunshots rang out in the distance and he finally literally saw the light–those lights that his son believed to be signals.

Were the lights ever signals?

Or were they just signs of the evil things that men do when their former selves have passed away?

We’ll have to watch Fear the Walking Dead next week to find out.

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Bicycle Girl

Freelance writer from Pittsburgh. May or may not be a walker whose bicycle was stolen by Officer Friendly.

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