The Book of Revelation was the last glimpse we were given by Jesus into the events that will lead up to His return, and beyond. Through John, Jesus revealed many secrets that had never been divulged to that date, and in many ways, this is our guide through the Tribulation. As with every book of the entire Bible, Jesus intended us to read it and understand it completely, as each book is one component of the whole story. Just as with a jigsaw puzzle, it cannot be complete without every piece. Let’s take a look at one of the most controversial books of the Bible.
(Revelation 1:1) The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to shew unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass; and he sent and signified it by his angel unto his servant John:
These things are revealed by our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, to John, to warn His dedicated servants of what will happen over a relatively short period of time at the end of days and leading into the Millennium. These servants are those who are His ambassadors of the Gospel, especially God’s elect, who will understand the deeper meaning of what Jesus would reveal in this book.
(Revelation 1:2) Who bare record of the word of God, and of the testimony of Jesus Christ, and of all things that he saw.
John was shown these things to reveal them to anyone who would read this book. The purpose of the book of Revelation is to reveal or uncover what is written in its pages. These are not meant to be hidden or kept secret, except from those who wouldn’t care enough to study them.
(Revelation 1:3) Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand.
Those who study what is written in Revelation will be blessed, or rather well-off and happy, because the things that will be happening in the near future will not come as a surprise. Those who decide it isn’t important to know what is written here will be taken as if by a thief in the night because they will not know the signs of the times.
(1Th 5:1) But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you.
(1Th 5:2) For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night.
(1Th 5:3) For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.
(1Th 5:4) But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief.
(1Th 5:5) Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness.
(1Th 5:6) Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober.
(Rev 3:3) Remember therefore how thou hast received and heard, and hold fast, and repent. If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee.
If we do not watch, He will come on us as a thief in the night. However, if we do what He tells us, and watch, He will not. We are to be children of the light (truth). Those who do not study, are children of the darkness—both because darkness represents lies, and they will not be able to tell the truth from the lies if they have no studied the truth, and because when you don’t know the truth, you are said to be “in the dark.” We are supposed to look for these signs given in Revelation and in prophecy throughout the Bible.
(Mat 16:2) He answered and said unto them, When it is evening, ye say, It will be fair weather: for the sky is red.
(Mat 16:3) And in the morning, It will be foul weather to day: for the sky is red and lowring. O ye hypocrites, ye can discern the face of the sky; but can ye not discern the signs of the times?
(Revelation 1:4) John to the seven churches which are in Asia: Grace be unto you, and peace, from him which is, and which was, and which is to come; and from the seven Spirits which are before his throne;
These seven churches would represent the seven types of Christians in the end times. Only two of these seven are acceptable to Jesus Christ. We will find out the details of these seven churches in the next two chapters, where Jesus will dictate a letter to each church.
(Revelation 1:5) And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood,
(Revelation 1:6) And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.
These verses are clarifying the credentials of who is dictating the letters that we are about to read—it is Jesus Christ, the One and Only.
(Revelation 1:7) Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen.
When Jesus returns, He will come exactly as He left, “in the clouds.” This is a euphemism for something else we will discuss at another time. Every eye will see Him and know that He has returned instantly. There will be no guessing and we won’t be seeing news reports on tv or hearing rumors when Jesus has truly returned. At that moment, every knee shall bow, even satan. We will, at that same time, be transformed into our spiritual bodies, as the flesh will be done away with.
(Act 1:9) And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight.
(Act 1:10) And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel;
(Act 1:11) Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.
(Isa 19:1) The burden of Egypt. Behold, the LORD rideth upon a swift cloud, and shall come into Egypt: and the idols of Egypt shall be moved at his presence, and the heart of Egypt shall melt in the midst of it.
(Mat 24:26) Wherefore if they shall say unto you, Behold, he is in the desert; go not forth: behold, he is in the secret chambers; believe it not.
(Mat 24:27) For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.
(Mat 24:28) For wheresoever the carcase is, there will the eagles be gathered together.
(Mat 24:29) Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:
(Mat 24:30) And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.
(Mat 24:31) And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.
(Php 2:9) Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:
(Php 2:10) That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth;
(Php 2:11) And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
(Revelation 1:8) I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.
Jesus has always existed and has always been part of God. Jesus is one part of the Godhead, which illustrates the three roles of our one God, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. He is God Almighty.
(Joh 1:1) In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
(Joh 1:2) The same was in the beginning with God.
(Revelation 1:9) I John, who also am your brother, and companion in tribulation, and in the kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was in the isle that is called Patmos, for the word of God, and for the testimony of Jesus Christ.
John is our brother in Christ, and he is a companion to us in the Tribulation because he has written all these things that teach us what to expect and help us keep our faith as we enter into it and go through it. At the time he was given and wrote Revelation, he was in a prison colony for his Christian faith, but Jesus’ words live on through his writings until the end of this flesh age.
(Revelation 1:10) I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day, and heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet,
John was taken to the Lord’s Day, the future time at the end of days, all the way to the return of Jesus and beyond. In order to be taken out of this third dimension, a person may not be in the flesh, because flesh exists only in the physical dimensions. John was taken in the spirit through the fourth dimension, which is independent of time, to be able to move through time. This is why flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of God. The Kingdom of God is eternal and therefore is not dependent upon time as it exists in those higher dimensions. In order to enter into (or back into) His Kingdom, we must take on a different form than what we currently have.
(1Co 15:50) Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.
(1Co 15:51) Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,
(1Co 15:52) In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
(Revelation 1:11) Saying, I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last: and, What thou seest, write in a book, and send it unto the seven churches which are in Asia; unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira, and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea.
Jesus is about to begin His dictation for John to write to these seven churches.
(Revelation 1:12) And I turned to see the voice that spake with me. And being turned, I saw seven golden candlesticks;
These seven golden candlesticks are the seven churches. The fact that they are golden represents that they have the truth of the Gospel, however, they also can determine what they will do with this Gospel and the responsibility they have with it in Christ.
(Revelation 1:13) And in the midst of the seven candlesticks one like unto the Son of man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle.
In the center of this arrangement of candlesticks was the Son of man, Jesus Christ. He is the center of the seven churches, as they are all members of the body of Christ, however, they are not all very good at following His instructions. This garment with which He is clothed is made up of His righteous acts, which are far more righteous than any other soul that has ever lived, so His garments are far more white and pure and beautiful.
This golden girdle is the belt of truth mentioned in Ephesians 6 and is part of the Gospel Armor we are all supposed to put on. Also this belt or girdle covers His chest, “paps”, and this represent His righteousness. The breastplate of righteousness is another part of the Gospel Armor.
(Revelation 1:14) His head and his hairs were white like wool, as white as snow; and his eyes were as a flame of fire;
His hair is representing the helmet (or hair) of salvation, because He is the author of salvation, and this hair is white with His purity. His eyes were as flames of fire because God is the Consuming Fire and no iniquity can exist in His presence—it will all burn up—and the eyes are the windows to the soul.
(Revelation 1:15) And his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and his voice as the sound of many waters.
Fine brass represents a something that is hardened and won’t be misshapen because it is so hard and this fine brass is highly polished. This means that He is firmly rooted in His Gospel of peace, therefore He has no need to be further prepared by having His feet shod with the Gospel of peace mentioned in Ephesians 6:15. He is the Gospel and is always in His truth. His voice is like the sound of many waters because it is a loud authoritative voice when He is speaking to John. Jesus means business.
(Revelation 1:16) And he had in his right hand seven stars: and out of his mouth went a sharp twoedged sword: and his countenance was as the sun shineth in his strength.
These seven stars in Jesus’ right hand represent the seven angels of the seven churches to whom these letters will be addressed. They are in the right hand because the right hand signifies power and action. These seven angels are under the direction of Jesus Himself.
The twoedged sword is the Word of God which comes from the mouth of Jesus and is another part of the Gospel Armor, and this item can be used for offense and defense. Jesus Shines like the sun (only brighter) because He is made up of the truth of God and it is brighter than any other thing, especially the darkness of the lies and deception of satan.
(Revelation 1:17) And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last:
When John saw Him, he had no other desire or inclination than to bow down and worship Him because that is how we react when we see Jesus as we don’t feel worthy to be in His presence. But, Jesus reassured him—John was there for a reason, and under His authority.
(Revelation 1:18) I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.
Again Jesus is giving His credentials so there is no question from John, or from us, who He is. Jesus is the key to eternal life, and to the Book of Life. Those not found in this book, will end up in the Lake of Fire at the end of the Millennium—they will receive the second (spiritual) death and will cease to exist.
(Revelation 1:19) Write the things which thou hast seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter;
Jesus is about to give John, and us, 21 chapters of prophecy that will suffice until His return…and beyond.
(Revelation 1:20) The mystery of the seven stars which thou sawest in my right hand, and the seven golden candlesticks. The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches: and the seven candlesticks which thou sawest are the seven churches.
Beginning with the next chapter, and on to the third, we will learn about what Jesus thinks of each of these seven churches and what their fate will be. Pay attention because the uncovering of these truths has just begun.