Tonight we joyfully commence a study on Revelation for our Wednesday evening series.
It is the Revelation to St. John, or also the Revelation from Christ. The book is Revelation, not Revelations, as it is one continual message. It is a revealing of the last days. These are an action-packed 22 chapters.
Many people think the things in Revelation are somehow secretive, but in fact Reveation is quite revealing. It can overwhelm us. It was written in visionary format. John had to somehow describe the things he saw but cannot fully articulate. And so he can only describe things he knows. (Imagine trying to write from a dream.)
Revelation 1:19 is the key to understanding the entire book. In red letters, Jesus instructs John to write the things he has seen, which are, and which are to come.
Nearly all of Revelation has yet to be fulfilled.
There are 4 views of interpretation:
- The preterist view — already been fulfilled
- The historic view — a chronicle of the history of the church and major world wars
- The idealist theory — everything is an allegory of good overcoming evil
- Futurist (what we at GVBC adhere to) — it hasn’t happened yet
Revelation was written during intense persecution to describe future intense persecution. During this time, being a Christian in the Roman Empire was punishable by death. John was a prisoner on the island of Patmos at the time. He was approximately 90 years old and was the last remaining disciple.
Revelation is the only book that promises a special blessing to the reader (1:3). Satan attempts to diverts our attention away from Revelation so that we cannot enjoy these blessings.
Those who tamper with the message of Revelation are cursed and condemned. We are not to add to or take away from Revelation lest we suffer the same plagues that are in it. Revelation is especially valuable to God because Jesus is coming again.
Revelation gives detail to the rise of the one world system under the control of the Antichrist. Remember, however, that we were not looking for the Antichrist but for Christ.
The one-world system has been in order for a long time. There will be a single currency, and there will be a single religion, and it won’t be evangelical Christianity. It’s all about people control. Bible believers have always messed these things up because we don’t go with the flow of their foolishness. The one-world religion will be centered in the city on 7 hills: Rome. It will be an amalgam of Catholicism and Islam.
Revelation is the only book of the Bible being played out before our eyes. We are watching it happen. This is the generation. There is only one place to look for these things other than the Bible: Jerusalem.
Revelation is God’s final warning to repent and believe the gospel. God desperately wants the world to repent. And so He sends an angel to preach to the four corners of the earth.