Revelation 1:1 – The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants what must soon take place. He made it known by sending his angel to his servant John.
The word revelation in greek is apokalapsis, and is where the english word apocalypse comes from. It means revealing or unveiling. But of what or whom? Jesus Christ is who. This book is all about Him. Who he is, what he wants of us, his return, his nature, his love and forgiveness, and his judgement.
God gave it to Jesus himself who gives it to show his servants (us) the revelation of himself and everything mentioned above.
The phrase “soon take place” in greek is en tachei, which means quickly or suddenly. This phrase is commonly misinterpreted to mean that the events in the book will happen very shortly, that they are just around the corner. True we live in a day that it could very well be just around the corner, but this phrase doesn’t mean this at all. It means that when things do start to happen they will come on quickly or suddenly. Read Matthew 24. We can see the sign of the times happening more and more everyday, and it will come upon us like a thief in the night. Let us be ready!
The apostle John was the first to recieve this revelation, and he conveys it to us in the authorship of this book.
Revelation 1:2 – who testifies to everything he saw—that is, the word of God and the testimony of Jesus Christ.
John states here that the book of revelation is “the word of God” thus testifying that this book is sacred scripture.
Revelation 1:3 – Blessed is the one who reads the words of this prophecy, and blessed are those who hear it and take to heart what is written in it, because the time is near.
Blessed means more than happy. It is a favorable circumstance granted by God to a person. It is an over whelming sense of joy that can almost not be described.
This is the 1st of 7 beatitudes in the book of Revelation.
Many miss this blessing by not reading or studying it. For example, the Anglican Church virtually omits the Book of Revelation from regular schedule of readings for private and public devotions. Thus they miss out on this blessing. Let it not be said of us!
Who will be blessed? “the one who reads” (singular) and “those who hear” (plural). Whether read in service or taught in a study, this means you and I.
How can we be blessed? if we “take to heart what is written” in this book of prophecy. Prophecy is more than giving predictions of the future. Read 1 Corinthians 14:3. It is for strengthening, encouragement, and comfort. This book will do all of this for us. If the coming back of our Lord and Savior doesn’t do this for us, then we better check our spiritual pulse.
And why should this book do all of this for us? “because the time is nea”. Just like the phrase “soon take place”, this is often misinterpreted. This phrase however literally means “the season is certain”. It will definately take place just as God says it will. Amen, come soon Lord Jesus!!!!!!!!