Revelation - Introduction
Why study the book of Revelation? Revelation 1:3 gives us the answer.
“Blessed is the one who reads the words of this prophecy, and blessed
are those who hear it and take to heart what is written in it, because the
time is near.” The time this book is speaking of is the end of this age; the
age of the church. The age of the church began with Pentecost and will
end with the second coming of Jesus. To hear and meditate on this book
brings blessings. This is the first of seven blessings or beatitudes recorded
The Bible is bookended by Genesis and Revelation. The first recounts the
beginning of the world and the second recounts the end of the world as we
know it. Revelation can be a terrifying book, but if you focus on its purpose,
it is a book of victory and comfort.
There are times in the history of man when we think “all hell is breaking
loose”. There are times in our lives when we think “life’s not fair”. How often
has mankind wished for the evil of this world to be rooted out and punished
and for the righteous to get their just rewards. We don’t always see that in
our world today. Revelation is all about God setting everything right.
More importantly, Revelation is about the revealing or unveiling of Jesus.
As early as Genesis 3, we get a glimpse of a prophecy about someone to
come who will crush the head of the serpent (Satan). All through the Old
Testament, we discover prophecies and veiled allusions to a Messiah who
will come and set God’s people free. God’s people are the Jews. Yet there
are prophecies about Gentiles being a part of God’s promises. None of
this made sense until Jesus appeared as a babe in Bethlehem. Through
the gospels, we see how these ancient prophecies are manifested in a
Jewish carpenter who was not only the Son of Man but the Son of God.
Yet there were still Old Testament prophecies that were not fulfilled at the
time of Jesus’ first coming and have yet to be fulfilled. Some prophecies
have dual fulfillments. Some have already been fulfilled or fulfilled in part,
but there will be another fulfillment of that same prophecy in the future.
Many Old Testament prophecies spoke of God reigning on earth. That has
yet to happen. Satan still has an influence on the earth. New Testament
prophecies speak about all people in heaven, on earth, and under the earth
bowing to Jesus and every tongue confessing that He is Lord of all. That has
So, the full unveiling of Jesus has still not occurred. The glory of his majesty,
his ruling on earth as he does in heaven, is still in the future. The book of
Revelation is our promise from God that He will indeed fulfill all He has said
he will do. Jesus will be King of kings and Lord of lords on earth. Revelation
is the unveiling of how this happens. At the end of Revelation, the fullness
of the glory of Jesus is finally apparent to all on earth. The promise of God
that He will dwell with his people becomes a reality.
There are two other places in the Bible we will be examining along with
Revelation. One is the book of Daniel, chapter 7, the other is Matthew 24.
Each of these speak of the end of this age that Revelation covers more
Where the gospels are about the grace of God, Revelation is about the
judgment of God. All are given an opportunity to come and freely drink of
the water of life. Sadly, not all will choose to come.
There are various interpretations of the book of Revelation. Some theologians
see it as already having taken place in the hearts of believers; others think
it is recording actual events that will take place in the future. That will be
the tact I will take. However the Holy Spirit speaks to you through these
passages, the important thing to remember is that Jesus, and all who follow
Him, are victorious.