Highlights from our ‘Revelation’ bible study.

Written by John on the island of Patmos, the Book of Revelation was given to John by an angel and told (in not so many words), ‘the Lord wants you to write this stuff down, John!’  So he did!

We discussed the apocalyptic style that the bJudgment Dayook is written in. We learned that the book was argued over profusely and barely made it into the Bible. Many of those that didn’t want it included said it was just too hard to understand. We looked at the guiding and corrective nature of the letters to the seven churches, and that Jesus Himself was the One who was speaking directly to the churches. Also, that when He speaks to them He is speaking directly to us, His Church of today. We talked a bit about the direct warning to the churches that were not doing as He wanted, that He would “remove the candlestand from that church”. The candlestand holding the flame that represented the Word itself…Jesus Himself. 

We discussed how the Book paints a picture of terrible times to come for the world and for Christians in particular during the last days. We learned that the Greek word ‘nikao’ means ‘to conquer’ and is used all over the Book with respect to Jesus and His coming back to straighten out this mess and make things right. While there is much affliction, war, persecution and battles for dominion, the overaching theme of the Book is that Jesus will conquer, ‘nikao’. (also that is where the tennis shoe company got it’s name…’Nike’) We talked about how the Book has been a great source of comfort to Christians during the period of the two world wars in particular, and how it could once again be a great source of comfort in the coming days of tribulation for the Chruch.

We also taked a bit about how the Book of Revelation has been a source of great conjecture and of gnostic prognostications. Pastor Anderson gave us his belief that trying to figure out the details of this ‘plan of God for the end times’ isn’t helpful to the Christian and it might actually be harmful as it actually works to weaken, and not strengthen one’s faith.

We also received some great outlines of the Book of Revelation that would make it easy to access the main sections of the Book and each of it’s corresponding themes.

We left the class with increased awareness of the ‘plan of God’ to finalize the process that we call ‘history’ and to conquer the forces of evil and put into place the New Kingdom. 

To sum it up:

Rough times are surely ahead, but Jesus, the Conqueror, will get us through it, one way or the other.

Do you think that we are in the end times already? Is it alright to try and figure out the details of God’s plan and pin down specifics, or should we be content to trust that whatever happens it will be the will of God? Or both?

 

 

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8 Responses

  1. Steve,
    Tough questions…..especially for one like myself who for years avoided the book of Revelations. To be honest it scared the beegeesus out of me in contrast to the Gospels and maybe that was the point. I don’t think that it is a question of right or wrong, but rather why we do or don’t want to study it. So for me I will try to live with one foot in the 1st century and the other in the end times.

    Thanks for the thoughtful post, RT

  2. RT,

    Thanks for your comments.

    I guess I am like you. I just didn’t want to go there in an attempt to not think about painful times to come.

    I never really did get into all the ‘who is the anti-Christ stuff, or is China the bear, and which beast is Russia stuff’…ok…maybe just a little.

    It seems like I do pay a little more attention everytime there is a significant attack on Israel.

    Your last statement of living “with one foot in the 1st century and the other in end times” reminds me of Luther, who said as Christians we only need to worry about two days…today, and that Day (the last Day).

    Thank RT!

    – Steve M.

  3. It’s certainly a book ‘bullseyed’ for mis-interpretation and mis-application, as church history reveals, but Gnostic approaches rid us of a gem. It’s popular right now (since the late 60’s and Hal Lindsey and co) to hear many gatherings resound with words about the last days, but the ‘last days’ started on the day of Pentecost (see Peter’s application of the prophecy of Joel in Acts 2), so the message of Revelation holds for every generation of the church – the new day is coming, so look up from the horror of a world mad in diabolical self determination, because redemption is at hand!
    That’s certainly a message we need to hear in this present moment.

  4. Steve,

    Thank you for sharing your Bible study with us!

    I believe we are living in the end times, but we will not know the hour in which Jesus returns.

    Many are already living in rough times: earth quakes, thousands being killed, famines and war and pain and suffering. I am quite sure people who are suffering in these tragic situations would believe the end is near.

    Studying the book of Revelation strengthened my faith in the way of realizing God’s love and mercy. God could have ended it all long time ago, but He waits for His children to receive Him. It also teaches/reminds us to help one another in this journey called life — so we can love and encourage one another and spread His Word.

    Steve, that is what your site is doing… sharing the Word of God!

  5. Good always comes from being in God’s Word, even though we may not understand everything, eventually, it comes together (hopefully… 😉 ).

    I have been told that it is very helpful to know most of the Bible (well) when studying the book of Revelation. But, having a pastor’s help, or a person who has studied the complete Bible is most helpful.

    RT, I was very intimated (and fearful) by the book of Revelation too, but like any thing, the more you come to understand it—less fear.

    I agree about Luther’s comment: To be ready when Christ returns.

  6. Magdalene, Howard,

    Thanks to you both for your encouraging words.
    Indeed, that is what the Book of Revelation is about (in my opinion) encouragement for the people of God, that we may weather the rough times in life and persevere to the end (the begginging!).

    – Steve

  7. I believe we are witnessing a prophetic fulfillment of the Bible, the decline of ALL ASPECTS of the earth’s environment and resources.

    We are witnessing the Fourth SEAL. One-fourth part of the EARTH is to be destroyed before we move forward to the next Seal events (Re.6:7-8).

    The earth is on a downhill slid from which it will not recover. The first four Trumpet events will destroy an additional one-third (Re.8:7-12).

    Re.6:7 And when he had opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth beast say, Come and see.

    Re.6:8 And I looked, and behold a pale horse: and his name that sat on him was Death, and Hell followed with him. And power was given unto them over the FOURTH PART OF THE EARTH, to kill with sword, and with hunger, and with death, and with the BEASTS OF THE EARTH. (Jude 1:10-12, Titus 1:12, 2 Pe.2:11-13).

    Patricia © Bible Prophecy on the Web
    Author of the self-study aid, The Book of Revelation Explained © 1982

  8. Patricia,

    Very interesting remarks. I’m going to go back and read those passages again. I knew we were in trouble, but I didn’t realize that we were that close. Then again, I guess the wheels could come off tomorrow!

    Thanks very much, Patricia, for your insight into the Book and your view of these end times.

    – Steve M.

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