Monday 16 July 2012

Bible Book:

"Grace to you and peace from him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven spirits who are before his throne, and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. To him who loves us and freed us from our sins by his blood, and made us to be a kingdom, priests serving his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen. " (vv. 4-6)

Revelation 1:1-8 Monday 16 July 2012


A brief introduction to John's Revelation isprobably helpful for those unfamiliar with apocalyptic writing. Itis poetic, visionary, expressing deep truths through symbolism andimages; so to treat it literally goes against the spirit of John'simagination. The Revelation of John is not fantasy, but a book ofunveiling the deep mysteries of God's plan for the world, ofproclaiming Christ as the Lord of history, of rejoicing in thevictory of Christ over evil when so much in everyday life appearsto give a different message. The future is full of hope.

Therefore, as we enter into the first few verses ofRevelation, we do so with both emotion and intellect. Verse 1clearly tells us not only that Jesus is the subject and source ofJohn's writing, but also that things will happen "soon". Be ready.This is an urgent piece of writing for the seven churches of Asia(what is now known as western Turkey), but it is no less urgent forreaders today to respond appropriately, as the prophecy about JesusChrist unfolds.

Verse 3 opens with the word "blessed", the first ofseven beatitudes in Revelation, the same number as the churchesspecifically addressed, and a number used at different times inthis book (spirits, trumpets, bowls, seals, etc); the number sevenstands for completion or wholeness in Revelation.

Verses 4 to 7 introduce the reader (or listener) tothe majestic poetry of introducing the triune God and God's eternalnature - "who is and who was and who is to come". If we have becomedull to this extraordinary understanding of God, try reading itagain as though for the first time and experience the 'wow' factor!Verse 8 repeats this wonderful truth, with another word picture -that God is incomparable, Alpha and Omega, the first and the lastletters of the Greek alphabet. But before that, in verse 7, we areintroduced to the prophecy of the manner and nature of Jesus'victorious, if uncomfortable, return. Quite a start to thebook!

To Ponder

  • When did you last have a 'wow' moment about the greatness ofGod?
  • If you shared your 'wow' moment with someone else, how wouldyou express it verbally? Or in what way would you write itdown?
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