Day 2: Revelation 1:1-8
Show notes for Week 1
- 1. Introduction – we should study Revelation, and every book of Scripture, not to gain more information, but to know God more. We should read and study and engage so that we will grow closer to God. In the process, we’ll gain knowledge, but that should never be our primary aim in studying the Bible. No matter how you choose to interpret Revelation, even if it is different from me, you should grow in your love for God. You should feel your heart moved and warmed by His great love for you.
- Who Wrote Revelation?
- John the Apostle or someone else
- John the apostle of the lamb is held by most
- When was it written?
- Around 90 AD. Fewer people agree on this, but many who believe John didn’t just make this up put the dating later rather than earlier
- Why was it written?
- If you don’t believe the Bible, speculation runs wild.
- If you believe the Bible, John makes it very clear–God told him to write every bit of this down. John had no motivations of his own to write this book.
- Read it
- This is the only book in the Bible where we are so specifically told we will be blessed just for reading it. The implication is to read it out loud. We are also commanded to keep the words in the book–we must actually take the words in Revelation and make them meaningful in our lives. We can’t just study this at a distance, we must engage the Holy Spirit in prayer and study about how this affects our lives, regardless of whether we believe we will live through these events or not.
- John was on the island of Patmos – the tradition goes that John had been sentenced to death by being submerged in molten tar, but that when he was submerged, he was completely unharmed. Some say that John’s exile to Patmos was because they couldn’t kill him, so the Romans just wanted him out of the way. John seems to allude to this when he speaks of himself in John 21:22-23.
- The Vision of Jesus
- John jumps right into the vision. Right away we find the answer to the question of why John wrote Revelation. John didn’t make this up, he was told by Jesus to write all this down.
- If you are intimidated by symbols in Revelation, fear not! The first chapter only has a few and they are almost all interpreted for us.
- Seven lampstands – the seven churches in Revelation
- Son of man dressed in a robe with a golden sash – we will see this clothing later in Revelation again, but we are told plainly that it is Jesus (First and Last, living one who was dead but is alive)
- Hair like snow – purity
- Eyes like fire – passion
- Feet like glowing bronze – power
- Voice like rushing waters – thunderous
- Sharp sword – we’ll see this again as well, but it stands for the Word of God (which we’ll see later)
- Shining like the sun – Jesus, we’ll find, will literally be the shining sun in eternity.
- Seven stars – the seven angels (messengers) to the seven churches
- Seven lampstands – the seven churches of Revelation.
- Why is this book Jesus’ Revelation?
- Why was this book written specifically to seven churches in Asia? What part of Asia is this referring to?
- Is Revelation meaningful to us today? What if we are not living in the end times described in Revelation–is it still meaningful?
- Why should we study Revelation?
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