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Tuesday: John’s Vision of Christ on Patmos — 15 Comments

  1. I know
    What a powerful word for John exiled in the Island of Patmos.
    At the time of his need God speaks through John revealing he is in the sanctuary.
    I am the first and I am the last gives comfort to John; I may die, but Jesus is eternal.
    His message to the seven churches at present and in history gives him the knowledge God will lead the church through the end time.

  2. In Revelation 1:12-18 we get the whole picture of Jesus in his full glory and as High Priest in the sanctuary, however he comes to each of the 7 church with a unique part of his character that they need because He knows them. What impact should this pattern of sharing only part of the truth depending on needs have on our interactions with others?

  3. I read something new to me although it seemed obvious when I thought about it, the priest went into the sanctuary barefoot! They were walking on holy ground, that is why they had to wash their hands and feet at the bronze laver before going into the Holy place. Remember Moses at the burning bush, God told him to take off his shoes

  4. The lesson says Jesus identified himself with the titles of Yahweh of OT. Could the ultimate revelation be that in fact the pre-incarnate Jesus was Yarweh of the OT? The One who interacted with Israel?

    • And perhaps that there is less distinction between God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit than is typically perceived and/or portrayed. Especially with respect to the misperception that Jesus is intervening between us and God.

      • Phil, your comment on intervention of Christ is an idea that I have been thinking about for a while.  Many believe that:
           • Jesus’ death “paid it all,” that is, it was necessary to pay the debt of sin owed to God;
           • Jesus’s death is a propitiation that bought off God’s anger (wrath) toward humanity; and
           • God had to have his arbitrary law satisfied by the death of Christ in our stead.

        But if any of this is true, what does it say about the character of God, who is (supposedly) love?  It seems to me that it says his love is conditioned by accounting principles, emotional rage and forensic justice – it is not unconditional love.  It says God has to be bought off in some way so that we can obtain his love.  It leads logically to salvation by works because we can never be sure Christ's work of "begging" for mercy in our behalf enough (is that really what he is mediating?), so that we can never know the peace of true reconciliation with God.

        I see a parallel between Christ's ministry on earth and in heaven:
            just as God the Father sent his beloved Son to us,
             that whoever believes in the Son should not perish,
              but have eternal life, [John 3:16]
        so too the Father gave this uncovering (revelation) to his Son who makes it known to John by his messenger (angel), and thus to us. [Revelation 1:1-2.]

        It is the revelation of a mystery: God’s true character and his real intentions for mankind.  But the only reason that it is a mystery is because the Adversary of our souls has been so very effective at having us believe his lies about God.  God’s expectation is that those who hear and keep this revelation will represent its truth through word and action to every living creature on this earth.  He is calling each of us to this blessing in these last days.

        • Richard

          Consistent with what you are saying, here are some questions to consider (if you haven't already):

          1) What was the actual basis of the eternal life that Adam and Eve (as the initial members of humanity) were living prior to Genesis 3? What is necessary to maintain a connection to eternal life (as created beings of the Creator)?
          2) What actually changed about that basis of and connection to eternal life in the course of the 'fall' of Gen 3?
          3) So, what needed to be repaired in order to restore Adam and Eve/humanity back to eternal life?

          I believe that an incorrect view of salvation and of God (that you outlined well) has developed and been perpetuated throughout Christianity due to not having considered reality and the above dimensions of reality contained in my above questions. There is a disconnect between the typical view of salvation that portrays God as operating essentially within our human legal system and Isa 55:9 that reminds us that God's ways are (much) "higher" than ours.

    • Yes and God(Yahweh) became flesh, that he might save us from our sins. 1 Timothy 3:16. God incarnate was the I AM Moses talked to, cloaked in a burning bush to protect Moses. Exodus 3:14. God incarnate(God with us) referred to Himself in the Gosples as I AM the Good Shepard. John 10:11. I AM the way, truth and life. John 14:6. I AM the living Bread. John 6:51. And yes I AM the 1st(Yahweh) and the last(Jesus Christ, God incarnate, God with us). Revelation 1:17.

    • Unfortunately in most English translations it is not clear which Hebrew word has been translated into God, Lord or LORD

      Exo 3:14  And God(eloheem) said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you. 
      Exo 3:15  And God(eloheem) said moreover unto Moses, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, The LORD(Yahweh) God(eloheem) of your fathers, the God(eloheem)of Abraham, the God(eloheem) of Isaac, and the God(eloheem) of Jacob, hath sent me unto you: this is my name for ever, and this is my memorial unto all generations.

      So notice that when they are translating Yahweh it will be shown of LORD, however when it is just God it could many different original words.

       1Ti 3:16  And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God(theos) was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory. 

  5. When I was teaching university students one of my first lectures was about using references and citations in academic assignment papers. With their usual lack of attention to detail, students would use Google to find an article on the internet and providing it used some of the same words used in the assignment specification, they would cite liberally from the paper without any discrimination. To counter this I made up about seven rules that they should apply before using a citation. Most of these rules had to do with the authenticity and authority of the article they wished to cite.

    In today’s lesson study, we have the certificate of authenticity and authority for the book of revelation. It described the author, and the intended audience, and links that to its position in history, by using a powerful set of symbols. Thus we have the seven candlesticks, a powerful historical symbol from the Jewish past connected to the current representative churches of Christendom. We have Jesus, the author, with references to his death and resurrection presented as a figure of authority and a set of names that show his equality-equivalence with the God of the Old Testament. A common thread running through this description is the idea of communication; that the ideas in this book are to be communicated, not just to the seven representative churches but to all of us who claim to be Christian in the succeeding millennia. This passage, Rev 1: 12-18 gives the rest of the book its credibility.

    He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches

    I had this little modern thought that if the vision had been given today, maybe John would have been shown a LIFI system with 7 LED lamps used as communication devices, each powered by the Holy Spirit Router and communicating the Gospel. Who says we cannot update the symbolism? {grin}

  6. To Lars Justinen,
    Your image posted by Goodsalt for the Lesson theme of ‘Tuesday: John’s Vision of Christ on Patmos has a picture of John sitting on a rock with a depiction of the Ark of the Covenant, is the absolute best representation I have ever seen of the ark. The bible says in Exodus 25:19 “19 Make one cherub at one end, and the other cherub at the other end; you shall make the cherubim at the two ends of it of one piece with the mercy seat.” And in verse 20 "And the cherubim shall stretch out their wings above, covering the mercy seat with their wings, and they shall face one another; the faces of the cherubim shall be toward the mercy seat.” Your painting HAS the tip of the angels (cherubim) wings meeting at the top correctly and in one piece, as the bible portrayed in and the lower wings also meeting together. But the best part is for me, is that we can see there is an everlasting circle with the light of God’s glory portrayed that is easily and logically seen by us mortals looking at your work. Your painting is truly inspired and I thank you for that and to SSNET for posting.
    Godbless today, Mrs A Stolz

  7. {Revelation 1:16 "In his right hand he held seven stars, from his mouth came a sharp two-edged sword, and this face was like the sun shining uin full strength.}

    The dictionary definition of the word "sanctuary" gives us three distinct meanings 1) A place of safety or refuge from pursuit, persecution or danger 2) A nature reserve (maintaining naturalness, quality or originality) 3) inmost or holiest place in a temple. With this in mind, an introduction of Jesus in the heavenly sanctuary should provide special meaning. The seven lampstands (churches) are in the sanctuary, and Jesus as High Priest is offering protection, maintaining the nature and quality, as well as sanctifying the churches. From our previous quarter,"Oneness in Christ", we learnt that the Church represent the "people of God".

    That said, then John's sees Jesus in His Glory ready to tend to His Church. In his right hand, seven stars represent angels/messengers/guardians intended to safeguard the seven churches (take note that seven here signifies completeness in characteristics).

    John describes the glory of Jesus with lots of magnificence, - white hair, white robe, golden sash - but we also see control, authority and ability within Jesus' description and discretion in the way he describes His eyes like fire; On the right hand; His mouth like a double-edged sword.

    Three things then come out here:

    1. The churches have different characteristics; strengths and weaknesses; and natures.

    2. Jesus as High Priest is doing a role of protecting, guiding and maintaining the best nature and quality of His people by exhorting, admonishing and teaching them; leading them to the right way.

    3. Jesus is in heaven tending for his Church and preparing to take them home.

    In a nutshell, our salvation is only pegged to Jesus Christ alone.

    {And Jesus came and spoke into them saying, "All power (authority) is given unto me in heaven and in earth - Matthew 28:18}

  8. John sees Jesus among the 7 lampstands, holding the 7 stars in His right hand, and a two-edged sword coming out of His mouth. The symbols are rich and are explained further by Jesus who is revealed in symbols that describe His office and activities in Heaven. In short, as Jesus promised(John 14:3), He is preparing a place for every repentant sinner that has received Him, and believed on His name.

    When Jesus says; “I know...”, the depth of His knowledge is spoken of in Ps 139, and with all His knowledge, He is still “merciful, gracious, longsuffering...forgiving”, and always seeking the best interest of those He died to save.

  9. When I read the different comments I am grateful to God! I see people from all over the world waiting for Jesus! I am in Uganda and we shall meet someday in heaven when he shall reap from all over the world. Thank you, Lord.

  10. Then, if Jesus is in heavenly sanctuary before God pleading—to whom is He pleading? To you and me! The Holy Spirit takes the pleas of Christ and brings them to your heart and mind—Jesus, via the Holy Spirit, knocks on the door to your heart, pleading to you for you to let Him in to heal and restore


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