Revelation 1:9 – I, John, your brother and companion in the suffering and kingdom and patient endurance that are ours in Jesus, was on the island of Patmos because of the word of God and the testimony of Jesus.
“I, John”. Here the author confirms that he is John, our brother and companion in Christ, if there was any doubt that the author wasn’t him. This however shouldn’t be our main focus, as we should focus on the message God has for us in this book.
“Suffering…kingdom…patient endurance” Three things that are ours in Christ Jesus. We have the patient endurance and hope in the coming kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and with that joyful hope in waiting for His kingdon to come we have the priveledge in enduring in … suffering?!?!?!? Why would a christian want suffering? Read Acts 5:17-41. Christians should count themselves worthy to suffer shame and persecution for Jesus because it was a confirmation they were children of God. Satan only attacks those that are close to Christ. Read 2 Timothy 3:12. Suffering and persecution will come. Be strong in Him and rejoice to be counted as a child of the most high!
Patmos is an island 50 miles southwest of Ephesus of the coast of modern day Turkey. It is a rock island in the Aegen Sea about 10 miles long and 6 miles wide that the Romans used as a type of Alcatraz. The island was rich in marble and prisoners were forced laborers in marble quarries. According to the early church historian Eusebius, John was sentenced to Patmos under the Roman Emperor Domitian, some time after the attempt to martyr him by dipping him in boiling oil failed. Wonder why it failed? Think God had future plans for John? Maybe to write some kind of book? John was then released from prison around 96 A.D. under the reign of Emperor Nerva, and he was allowed to return to Ephesus where he would start to send out this book.
Why was he there? Because he would not deny the truth of the word or his witnes to Jesus Christ. Read Matthew 10:28. Let us not deny Christ for anything.
Revelation 1:10 – On the Lord’s Day I was in the Spirit, and I heard behind me a loud voice like a trumpet.
Lord’s day. When is the Lord’s Day? Sunday is the Lord’s day. Jesus rose from the grave on a sunday and the Holy Spirit was poured out on the day of pentecost which was on a sunday. The early church christians also met and had fellowship on sundays.
“In the Spirit” John here is not describing a New Age sort of out of body experience or trance, but he was most likely praying and worshiping the Lord when the Holy Spirit showed him a vision, much like Peter’s in Acts 10:9-16.
“Voice like a trumpet” indicates a bold, clear, and authoritative calling. Jesus was speaking to him.
Read 1 Thessalonians 4:16 and compare it to this verse. Both use a trumpet to symbolize the call of God.
Revelation 1:11 – which said: “Write on a scroll what you see and send it to the seven churches: to Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia and Laodicea.”
What did this trumpet call say? It was a command to John to write on a scroll (they didn’t have books yet) what he was about to see and he was to send it to the 7 churches listed above.
Why just these churches? Why not others such as Colosse which was located in the same area as these other churches and which a book of the bible was already written to? Some say it is because they were arranged in a circular pattern making distribution quicker to other churches, or becasue they were postal districts in the province of Asia. Others believe Christ picked these 7 churches becasue 7 is the number of completeness and it is not just for these 7 churches but for the whole complete church. Some say it descibes the various characteristics of christians themselves as they try to live their lives in Christ. Still others say that the characteristics of these 7 churches describe perfectly the characteristics of the christian church through out history and serve as prophecies of what was to come. So which is correct? More than likely, each one is correct, especially the last 2 theories which we will see when we get into our stidy of chapters 2 & 3.