I’ve talked a lot about studying Revelation already, but haven’t addressed this — it is probably one of the most misunderstood portions of Scripture. By misunderstood, I mean this: most people think it’s too hard, to weird, irrelevant, etc. So, before you do, there are four things you MUST know, to ground you and clear the fog.
1. It is NOT DIFFICULT to understand. The whole Bible, INCLUDING the book of Revelation, is written to be understood by the average person (and for most of history for most of the earth the “average” person was illeterate and uneducated!). God desires that we understand Him. Many people have handled the Word, and particularly the book of Revelation in such a way as to imply that only those who are well-educated can grasp it. This is a lie!
2. It is LITERAL. It is not only figurative and symbolic. It is the telling of actual facts and events that will take place, and how they will take place. It is a future history of the Church and the earth in the end times! There are basically only 7 major symbols in it, and they are ALL explained clearly right in the text!
3. It is (near) FUTURE. It has not yet been fulfilled (some believe it has already happened). It tells us the story of the end of this age of time, the ACTUAL events that WILL take place on the earth just before the return of Christ. Therefore, it is supremely important that we give ourselves to learning it! By learning it, we will know what to expect and we will be prepared for what Jesus is going to do as He prepares to come again! It will prepare us to not just “endure” the events described, but to EQUIP us to JOIN with the Son of God in all that He is doing in those soon coming days. He wants us to PARTNER with Him (“he has made us kings and priests….”). Therefore, It should NOT make us afraid. We are not reading about things that are going to happen TO us, these are things that are going to happen THROUGH us!
4. Studying the book should cause us to KNOW and LOVE Jesus more! Note the first verse of the book: “This is the revelation of Jesus Christ”. This book is a REVEALING of Jesus!! It’s not mainly about revealing future events, it’s about showing us WHO Jesus is, and WHAT He is like! It describes His goodness, His power, His beauty, His majesty — and shows us His perfect leadership at the end of time to bring all things together under His feet, so that His Kingdom will truly and fully come on earth. This is EXCITING AND WONDERFUL! The purpose of studying it is that we might become MORE fascinated with Him, fall more deeply in love with Him and worship Him wholeheartedly, for He is WORTHY!!
Again, I’ll ask the question: What has been your experience/impression of the book of Revelation up to this time? Would love to hear where you’re coming from!
Peace to you!