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Friday: Further Thought – The Gospel from Patmos — 7 Comments

  1. Have you taken the time to read Rev Chapter 1 yet? It gives some great insights into the theme of the book. If we get the big picture right, a lot of the detail falls into perspective and that is important when studying Revelation.

    One of the issues that I have is the concern that many folk have about the geography of the events supposedly described in Revelation. I have often received interpretations saying that Communism/Islam/India/China are described in particular passages. Significantly, the emphasis changes as the threat changes. Revelation is essentially a spiritual book, and while some of the descriptions may fit particular powers or churches, ultimately it is a book to encourage and warn us in a world in conflict.

    Read the first Chapter of Revelation and take the time to let the rest of us know what grabbed your attention.

    • Maurice, what grabs my attention first and foremost is the clear purpose and promise of God in the first 3 verses. From there, this purpose unfolds with clearness to all who meet the conditions of those promises. We may go into this study with "strong confidence", trusting God to keep His word, who has set forth Jesus as our propitiation(Who could question His love and intentions toward us?).

      A few other details(there is not enough space for all that is there!) would be the fact that Jesus holds the 7 stars(who are they?!)in HIS right hand, and that He is close and dwells among "them that are His", the 7 candle sticks. What could be more comforting than this description of our Savior who has promised to be with us "always"?

      • What is most amazing to me is that by the grace of God, Jesus died the second death for every man (Hebrews 2:9 KJV; 2 Corinthians 5:14 KJV). Consequently, because there is no "double jeopardy" in God's kingdom, our eternal life is assured and can be lost only by unbelief (rejecting Christ's death on our behalf and choosing to die our own second death; John 3:16-18 KJV; Matthew 22:5 KJV).

        If our second death has already occurred, what is left for us to experience? Eternal life... if only we believe in and accept the Gift (Romans 6:23 KJV; John 3:16 KJV; Acts 16:31 KJV).

    • Maurice, thanks for the challenge to read Rev 1. I share some of the concerns you listed.

      What grabbed my attention was the consistent, coherent message of the chapter with the rest of Scripture! Here are some things I noticed:
      1) The \"line of possession\" of Truth revealed: according to Rev 1:1, truth originates with God the Father and is passed along to His Incarnate Son, who then passes it along to the \"servants\" of the Son. This is consistent with Moses\' prophetic declaration in Dt 18:15,18.
      2) John\'s target audience revealed: If Jesus is transferring truthful revelations to \"His servantS\" (note plural) and John is identified as \"His servant John\" (Rev 1:1), then what this \"servant\" is commanded to \"write in a book AND SEND it to THE SEVEN CHURCHES which are IN ASIA\" (Rev 1:11,4) becomes significant in the identification of Jesus\' \"servants\" and their location. It therefore identifies a location from which a trustworthy message can be anticipated.
      3) Jesus\' rulership revealed: John identifies JESUS as being \"THE RULER over the KINGS of THE EARTH\" (Rev 1:5). Is there any similarity between those whom Jesus is revealed as \"ruling over\" and those who are identified as \"His servants\"? Well, John wrote, \"To Him who LOVED US and WASHED US FROM OUR SINS\" indicating that those Jesus \"rule over\" and makes \"KINGS AND PRIEST to HIS GOD and FATHER\" (Rev 1:6) fall within the \"line of possession\" of Rev 1:1. I believe they are one and the same (Jn 17:16-20; Rev 2:26-27; 5:9-10).
      4) Jesus\' base of operation revealed: Identifying the \"line of possession\" of Truth is pivotal in understanding the good news of Jesus\' (and His \"servants\") role in the eradication of sin within humans right here on Earth. The coherent message of a \"stone\" that is \"cut out without hands\", decimating and forever replacing the history of human sin (Dan 2:34-35,44) is seen again in Rev 12--a woman who give birth to a special Child, goes on to deliver more offspring, who have the \"testimony\" of the first Child (Rev 12:17). Jesus\' \"servant John\", even though isolated on Patmos, is commissioned to \"nourish\" (Rev 12:14; 1 Pt 1:1-2) \"the woman\" by \"the testimony of Jesus Christ\" (Rev 12:17; 1:2,9,11) for her restored return from \"the north country\" (Zech 13:7-9; Jer 23:4-5,7-8). The \"woman\" goes on to minister in the Earth as the body, or temple, of Christ (Jn 2:19,21; Eph 4:11-12; Act 15:14-17; Rev 2:26-27).

  2. The first chapter gives some pretty awesome pictures of Jesus! We tend to think of Him as the baby in the manger, and the grown man who walked the roads of Galilee and Judea; which is good, but here in Revelation we, like John, see the glory and holiness of Christ, and like John fall down symbolically dying to self to be lifted up into His presence.

    He was God with the Father before the manger scene,
    He is alive at the right hand of the Father
    He is to come to put an end to sin and suffering.

    He loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, and makes us kings and priests unto the Father.

    He will come again and everyone will see Him.

    He assures us -- He is the beginning of all things and the end of all things. It's all in His hands.
    No matter how the antagonists rage and fight, He will win!
    The sad part is -- those who reject him and fight against Him will wail with bitter regret when He comes and they realize what a glorious gift they have rejected.

    He is the alpha (the head) and the omega (the one Who concludes) the beginning and the end.

    John sees Christ in His glorified humanity, but He has always been, yet He took on humanity and died; but He broke the prison walls of death, behold, He is alive for evermore, Amen; and He has the keys of hell and of death.

    The whole message in chapter one, is about Jesus and the powerful salvation He has secured. We need not be discouraged by the forces that rise against us, no matter how fierce and powerful. We need not fear death or grave. Jesus has the keys and He is life and the resurrection. He is the Almighty, the power, yet tenderly caring for His people. He is the true witness, and He will come again.

  3. Why do people associate fear with Apocalypse? Mainly because of media using the word to portray disaster when in fact the word means "to take the cover off" something like a pot or it can mean *unveiling* something which in this case is Jesus Christ.

    See also how Paul uses the word - revealing the mystery of the gospel: (see Rom 16:25; 1 Cor 14:6; Gal 1:12; Eph 3:3-5).
    Rom 16:25-27  Now to Him who is able to establish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ according to the *revelation* of the mystery, having been unvoiced during eternal times;  26  but now has been made plain, and by the prophetic Scriptures, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, made known to all nations for the obedience of faith;  27  to God only wise be glory through Jesus Christ forever. Amen.


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