V 1 The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him to show His servants, things which must shortly take place. And He sent and signified it by His angel to His servant John,
The Greek word for revelation is ”apokalupsis”’, which means to disclose or reveal. The revelation of Jesus Christ, regarding future events, from the Father to Jesus, from Jesus to John, from John to the seven churches of Asia Minor, and us. God sent it to John by His angel through signs and symbolism. This was to protect the original audience from persecutions in case it fell into the wrong hands.
2 who bore witness to the word of God, and to the testimony of Jesus Christ, to all things that he saw. 3 Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of this prophecy, and keep the prophecies written in it; for the time is near.
John witnessed and testified to this revelation of Jesus Christ. God promised a blessing to those who hear, read, study, understand, meditate, and apply its prophecies and teachings. This is the only book that promises a blessing to its reader. The time of Christ’s second coming is imminent.
4 John, to the seven churches which 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 from the dead, and the ruler over the kings of the earth. To Him who loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood, 6 and has made us kings and priests to His God and Father, to Him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.
John wrote this book to the seven churches in Asia Minor (Turkey). Seven is a complete number. The seven churches represent the seven dispensations of church history from the beginning until the rapture. John pronounced a blessing of grace and peace to his audience and us. When we receive the grace of Christ, we will experience peace from Christ, who is the Prince of Peace.
God’s preexisted from eternity past to eternity future. He was (past), and is ( present), and is to come (future). The Greek word for firstborn is “prototokos” which means first in pre-eminence, precedence, or supremacy, not chronology. Jesus was the first fruit of the resurrection. Lazarus and others were resuscitated only to die again. Christ was resurrected never to die again. Christ loved and washed us clean from our sins by His blood.
7 Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him, even they who pierced Him. And all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him. Even so, Amen.
8 “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End,” says the Lord, “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.”
Christ coming with clouds speaks of His second coming. On this day, everyone, including the Jews who pierced Him will see and mourn for Him. Christ is the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last Greek alphabet, the past, present, and future.
9 I, John, both your brother and companion in the tribulation and kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was on the island that is called Patmos for the word of God and for the testimony of Jesus Christ.
John considered himself a brother and companion in the tribulation to his audience, and us. He was exiled to the island of Patmos for the word and his faith in Christ.
John was a pastor, theologian, and poet.
10 I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s Day, and I heard behind me a loud voice, as of a trumpet, 11 saying, “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last,” and, “What you see, write in a book and send it to the seven churches which are in Asia: to Ephesus, to Smyrna, to Pergamos, to Thyatira, to Sardis, to Philadelphia, and to Laodicea.”
John was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day (Sunday). The trumpet is the ram horn or shofar. John was transported out of his body into heaven and saw a vision of the glorious and risen Christ, the Alpha and the Omega, who commanded him to write everything into a book and send it to the seven churches in Asia Minor (Turkey).
12 Then I turned to see the voice that spoke with me. And having turned I saw seven golden lampstands, 13 and in the midst of the seven lampstands One like the Son of Man, clothed with a garment down to the feet and girded about the chest with a golden band. 14 His head and hair were white like wool, as white as snow, and His eyes like a flame of fire; 15 His feet were like fine brass, as if refined in a furnace, and His voice as the sound of many waters; 16 He had in His right hand seven stars, out of His mouth went a sharp two-edged sword, and His countenance was like the sun shining in its strength.
Golden lampstands or Menorahs speaks of Jesus, the light of the world. Gold speaks of divinity. 7 is the number of completion. Son of Man is the Messiah, Daniel 7: 13, “I was watching in the night visions, And behold, One like the Son of Man, Coming with the clouds of heaven! He came to the Ancient of Days, And they brought Him near before Him”.
John saw a vision of the glorious risen Christ.
As the great high priest, Christ’s body was covered down to the feet. The body of Christ represents the church, covered with the robe of Christ’s righteousness. The golden band around His chest, speaks of Christ’s heart of gold. Hair white as wool speaks of forgiveness of sins. Isaiah 1:18, ‘’Though your sins are like scarlet, They shall be as white as snow; Though they are red like crimson, They shall be as wool’’. Eyes like a flame of fire, speaks of His eyes of approval, compassion, and acceptance. Feet like refined brass speaks of sin, sacrifice, and suffering, Daniel 3:25, “I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire; and they are not hurt, and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God.” His voice like a sound of many waters speaks of His voice speaking to us in various ways. 7 stars in His hands represent the 7 angels of the 7 churches. The two-edged sword from His mouth represents the word of God. Hebrews 4:12 “For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword”. His countenance is the Aaronic blessing of Numbers 6:24-26, “The Lord bless you and keep you; The Lord make His face shine upon you, And be gracious to you; The Lord lift up His countenance upon you, And give you peace.”
17 And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as dead. But He laid His right hand on me, saying to me, “Do not be afraid; I am the First and the Last. 18 I am He who lives, and was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore. Amen. And I have the keys of Hades and of Death. 19 Write the things which you have seen, and the things which are, and the things which will take place after this. 20 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 which you saw are the seven church.
John fell at His feet of Jesus, the first and the last, who had the keys of Hades and death. Jesus had the keys to life and death, heaven, and hell. The divine outline of this book is given. (1). Rev 1: the things that John saw in his vision (2). Rev 2-3, the things which are, concerning the seven churches of Turkey. (3). Rev 4-22, the things that will take place in the future. The 7 stars represent the 7 angels of the 7 churches. The 7 menorahs represent the 7 churches shining the light of Christ to the people living in darkness. Everything is in 7, the number of completion.