The Revelation of Jesus Christ
Revelation 1 from the daily reading in the One Year Bible
The Revelation of Jesus Christ
The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him to show to His bond-servants, the things which must soon take place; and He sent and communicated it by His angel to His bond-servant John, 2 who testified to the word of God and to the testimony of Jesus Christ, even to all that he saw. 3 Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of the prophecy, and heed the things which are written in it; for the time is near.
4 John to the seven churches that are in Asia: 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, 5 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 released us from our sins by His blood— 6 and He has made us to be a kingdom, priests to His God and Father—to Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen. 7 Behold, He is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see Him, even those who pierced Him; and all the tribes of the earth will mourn over Him. So it is to be. Amen.
8 “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.”
9 I, John, your brother and fellow partaker in the tribulation and kingdom and perseverance which are in Jesus, was on the island called Patmos because of the word of God and the testimony of Jesus. 10 I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day, and I heard behind me a loud voice like the sound of a trumpet, 11 saying, “Write in a book what you see, and send it to the seven churches: to Ephesus and to Smyrna and to Pergamum and to Thyatira and to Sardis and to Philadelphia and to Laodicea.”
12 Then I turned to see the voice that was speaking with me. And having turned I saw seven golden lampstands; 13 and in the middle of the lampstands I saw one like a son of man, clothed in a robe reaching to the feet, and girded across His chest with a golden sash. 14 His head and His hair were white like white wool, like snow; and His eyes were like a flame of fire. 15 His feet were like burnished bronze, when it has been made to glow in a furnace, and His voice was like the sound of many waters. 16 In His right hand He held seven stars, and out of His mouth came a sharp two-edged sword; and His face was like the sun shining in its strength.
17 When I saw Him, I fell at His feet like a dead man. And He placed His right hand on me, saying, “Do not be afraid; I am the first and the last, 18 and the living One; and I was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore, and I have the keys of death and of Hades. 19 Therefore write the things which you have seen, and the things which are, and the things which will take place after these things. 20 As for the mystery of the seven stars which you saw in My right hand, and the seven golden lampstands: the seven stars are the angels of the seven churches, and the seven lampstands are the seven churches.
The final book in the Bible is Revelation; The Revelation of Jesus Christ. In truth though, that’s what the entirety of the Bible, from Genesis to Revelation really is; it is the Revelation of God’s will and His plan for creation and for people in particular, and so it is the Revelation of the necessity for Christ His Son, our Savior. In Genesis One we see Jesus revealed as creator. Genesis 1:26 says: Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; and let them rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over the cattle and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” John 1:1-3 says: In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being. In Genesis 3:14-15, after the fall, we see Jesus revealed as overcomer and redeemer: The Lord God said to the serpent, “Because you have done this, Cursed are you more than all cattle, And more than every beast of the field; On your belly you will go, And dust you will eat All the days of your life; And I will put enmity Between you and the woman, And between your seed and her seed; He shall bruise you on the head, And you shall bruise him on the heel.” Throughout the rest of the Old Testament we see the promises of God for His people, and that people were unable to walk in God’s plan; to keep His commandments on their own. So we see the prophetic revelation of Jesus, the coming Savior and Redeemer. There are hundreds of prophetic scriptures regarding the Messiah, fulfilled in the birth, life and death of Jesus. Then in the New Testament we see the revelation of the life of Christ. We see Emmanual, God with us. His life, His teaching and His death and resurrection are recorded for us; that we might know the full revelation of Christ.
In today’s text it begins saying: The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him to show to His bond-servants, the things which must soon take place; and He sent and communicated it by His angel to His bond-servant John, who testified to the word of God and to the testimony of Jesus Christ, even to all that he saw. Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of the prophecy, and heed the things which are written in it; for the time is near. Even today, the time has not yet come, but is nearer now than it was then. So as we read the Book of Revelation, we are shown the Christ who is yet to come. Not the promised Messiah. Not a baby born in a manger. Not as Son of Man, but as Conquering King; Lord of Lords and King of Kings; as Righteous Judge of all. John says it is to show His bond-servants, the things which must soon take place. Of course we see many today who question, doubt or even mock the coming of Christ since it has not yet come to pass. 2 Peter 3:3-9 says: Know this first of all, that in the last days mockers will come with their mocking, following after their own lusts, and saying, “Where is the promise of His coming? For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all continues just as it was from the beginning of creation.” For when they maintain this, it escapes their notice that by the word of God the heavens existed long ago and the earth was formed out of water and by water, through which the world at that time was destroyed, being flooded with water. But by His word the present heavens and earth are being reserved for fire, kept for the day of judgment and destruction of ungodly men. But do not let this one fact escape your notice, beloved, that with the Lord one day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years like one day. The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance. Because God is eternal and not subject to or locked in finite time as we are, soon does not have the same meaning to Him as it might to us. Although there are those who make a mockery of the coming of Christ, they are the very ones He is giving the grace of time and patience, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance. It is with that knowledge and understanding that we read Revelation. It must soon take place, but the reason it has not yet is because of God’s patience and His desire that none would perish. In 2 Peter 3:10-13 it says: But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, in which the heavens will pass away with a roar and the elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and its works will be burned up. Since all these things are to be destroyed in this way, what sort of people ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be destroyed by burning, and the elements will melt with intense heat! But according to His promise we are looking for new heavens and a new earth, in which righteousness dwells. What sort of people ought we to be?
In today’s text it says: “Write in a book what you see, and send it to the seven churches: to Ephesus and to Smyrna and to Pergamum and to Thyatira and to Sardis and to Philadelphia and to Laodicea.” The Book of Revelation is a message to believers even more than it is a warning to those who do not believe. It is for us to know what must soon take place. It is for us to be ready for His return and to know what sort of people we ought to be?
Heavenly Father, Lord Jesus Christ; precious Holy Spirit; thank You for Your word which is the revelation of Your will and Your plan. Thank You for the revelation of Christ, my Savior and Redeemer, throughout Your word. Thank You for revealing what must still come; that I might be ready and know what sort of person I should be. Thank You for the grace of Your patience to those who do not believe. May my life and my words help to fulfill Your desire that none should perish; that they too would see the revelation of Christ. Amen.