Rightly Understanding the Book of Revelation

Most people would agree that the book of Revelation is distinguished among books of the Bible as one of the hardest to understand.  Strangely, this does not stop many of them from quoting it liberally to embellish their wild doctrines of the future.

We do not have to regard such doctrines of the future for they are erroneous in two important ways.

First, the book of Revelation makes clear from the beginning that it is a revelation of Jesus Christ (Revelation 1:1).  That is, the book is about Jesus – His identity, His nature, His activities, His enemies, His victories, and so on.  Any teaching of the book of Revelation (or of any book of the Bible for that matter) that does not center on Jesus Christ is not of God (2 John 1:9; 2 Timothy 3:14-17).

Second, the events described in the book of Revelation have all occurred.  You can know this by simply paying attention to the plainer, and easier to understand, parts of the document – that is, its beginning and its end.  In the opening of the letter, the apostle John says it was written to make known the events that were to soon take place (Revelation 1:1).  He then emphasizes that the time is near (Revelation 1:3).  At the close of the letter, he repeats the same point five different times (Revelation  22:6, 7, 10, 12, 20).   If the time of the prophecy’s fulfillment was near in the latter part of the 1st Century A.D., how can it be anything but distant past in the 21st Century?  The letter’s emphatic emphasis on the nearness of fulfillment implies an awareness that some would misread and misuse its contents.  As if to warn against just such misuse, the letter closes with curse on anyone who “adds to or takes away from” its words.  Sadly, modern-day prophets ignore the warning and take away the words regarding its timing.  Do not follow such people.

If you do not know anything else about the book of Revelation you may know this for certain from its own testimony:  it is about Jesus Christ, and it is fulfilled.  Follow only Him.

The purpose of this blog is to praise Jesus Christ in biblical terms.

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