Chapter 1

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The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to shew unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass; and he sent and signified it by his angel unto his servant John: 2 Who bare record of the word of God, and of the testimony of Jesus Christ, and of all things that he saw. 3 Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand.

4 John to the seven churches which are in Asia: Grace be unto you, and peace, from him which is, and which was, and which is to come; and from the seven Spirits which are before his throne; 5 And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, 6 And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen. 7 Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen.

8 I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.

9 I John, who also am your brother, and companion in tribulation, and in the kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was in the isle that is called Patmos, for the word of God, and for the testimony of Jesus Christ. 10 I was in the Spirit on the Lord's day, and heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet, 11 Saying, I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last: and, What thou seest, write in a book, and send it unto the seven churches which are in Asia; unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira, and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea.

12 And I turned to see the voice that spake with me. And being turned, I saw seven golden candlesticks; 13 And in the midst of the seven candlesticks one like unto the Son of man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle. 14 His head and his hairs were white like wool, as white as snow; and his eyes were as a flame of fire; 15 And his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and his voice as the sound of many waters. 16 And he had in his right hand seven stars: and out of his mouth went a sharp twoedged sword: and his countenance was as the sun shineth in his strength.

17 And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last: 18 I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death. 19 Write the things which thou hast seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter; 20 The mystery of the seven stars which thou sawest in my right hand, and the seven golden candlesticks. The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches: and the seven candlesticks which thou sawest are the seven churches.

Commentary for Revelation 1

The Book of the Revelation of St. John consists of two principal divisions. 1. Relates to "the things which are," that is, the then present state of the church, and contains the epistle of John to the seven churches, and his account of the appearance of the Lord Jesus, and his direction to the apostle to write what he beheld, ch. #1:9-20|. Also the addresses or epistles to seven churches of Asia. These, doubtless, had reference to the state of the respective churches, as they then existed, but contain excellent precepts and exhortations, commendations and reproofs, promises and threatenings, suitable to instruct the Christian church at all times. 2. Contains a prophecy of "the things which shall be hereafter," and describes the future state of the church, from the time when the apostle beheld the visions here recorded. It is intended for our spiritual improvement; to warn the careless sinner, point out the way of salvation to the awakened inquirer, build up the weak believer, comfort the afflicted and tempted Christian, and, we may especially add, to strengthen the martyr of Christ, under the cruel persecutions and sufferings inflicted by Satan and his followers.The Divine origin, the design, and the importance of this book. (1-3) The apostle John salutes the seven churches of Asia. (4-8) Declares when, where, and how, the revelation was made to him. (9-11) His vision, in which he saw Christ appear. (12-20)1-3 This book is the Revelation of Jesus Christ; the whole Bible is so; for all revelation comes through Christ, and all relates to him. Its principal subject is to discover the purposes of God concerning the affairs of the church, and of the nations as connected therewith, to the end of the world. These events would surely come to pass; and they would begin to come to pass very shortly. Though Christ is himself God, and has light and life in himself, yet, as Mediator between God and man, he receives instructions from the Father. To him we owe the knowledge of what we are to expect from God, and what he expects from us. The subject of this revelation was, the things that must shortly come to pass. On all who read or hear the words of the prophecy, a blessing is pronounced. Those are well employed who search the Bible. It is not enough that we read and hear, but we must keep the things that are written, in our memories, in our minds, in our affections, and in practice, and we shall be blessed in the deed. Even the mysteries and difficulties of this book are united with discoveries of God, suited to impress the mind with awe, and to purify the soul of the reader, though he may not discern the prophetic meaning. No part of Scripture more fully states the gospel, and warns against the evil of sin.

4-8 There can be no true peace, where there is not true grace; and where grace goeth before, peace will follow. This blessing is in the name of God, of the Holy Trinity, it is an act of adoration. The Father is first named; he is described as the Jehovah who is, and who was, and who is to come, eternal, unchangeable. The Holy Spirit is called the seven spirits, the perfect Spirit of God, in whom there is a diversity of gifts and operations. The Lord Jesus Christ was from eternity, a Witness to all the counsels of God. He is the First-born from the dead, who will by his own power raise up his people. He is the Prince of the kings of the earth; by him their counsels are overruled, and to him they are accountable. Sin leaves a stain of guilt and pollution upon the soul. Nothing can fetch out this stain but the blood of Christ; and Christ shed his own blood to satisfy Divine justice, and purchase pardon and purity for his people. Christ has made believers kings and priests to God and his Father. As such they overcome the world, mortify sin, govern their own spirits, resist Satan, prevail with God in prayer, and shall judge the world. He has made them priests, given them access to God, enabled them to offer spiritual and acceptable sacrifices, and for these favours they are bound to ascribe to him dominion and glory for ever. He will judge the world. Attention is called to that great day when all will see the wisdom and happiness of the friends of Christ, and the madness and misery of his enemies. Let us think frequently upon the second coming of Christ. He shall come, to the terror of those who wound and crucify him by apostacy: he shall come, to the astonishment of the whole world of the ungodly. He is the Beginning and the End; all things are from him and for him; he is the Almighty; the same eternal and unchanged One. And if we would be numbered with his saints in glory everlasting, we must now willing submit to him receive him, and honour him as a saviour, who we believe will come to be our Judge. Alas, that there should be many, who would wish never to die, and that there should not be a day of judgment!

9-11 It was the apostle's comfort that he did not suffer as an evil-doer, but for the testimony of Jesus, for bearing witness to Christ as the Immanuel, the Saviour; and the Spirit of glory and of God rested upon this persecuted apostle. The day and time when he had this vision was the Lord's day, the Christian sabbath, the first day of the week, observed in remembrance of the resurrection of Christ. Let us who call him "Our Lord," honour him on his own day. The name shows how this sacred day should be observed; the Lord's day should be wholly devoted to the Lord, and none of its hours employed in a sensual, worldly manner, or in amusements. He was in a serious, heavenly, spiritual frame, under the gracious influences of the Spirit of God. Those who would enjoy communion with God on the Lord's day, must seek to draw their thoughts and affections from earthly things. And if believers are kept on the Lord's holy day, from public ordinances and the communion of saints, by necessity and not by choice, they may look for comfort in meditation and secret duties, from the influences of the Spirit; and by hearing the voice and contemplating the glory of their beloved Saviour, from whose gracious words and power no confinement or outward circumstances can separate them. An alarm was given as with the sound of the trumpet, and then the apostle heard the voice of Christ.

12-20 The churches receive their light from Christ and the gospel, and hold it forth to others. They are golden candlesticks; they should be precious and pure; not only the ministers, but the members of the churches; their light should so shine before men, as to engage others to give glory to God. And the apostle saw as though of the Lord Jesus Christ appeared in the midst of the golden candlesticks. He is with his churches always, to the end of the world, filling them with light, and life, and love. He was clothed with a robe down to the feet, perhaps representing his righteousness and priesthood, as Mediator. This vest was girt with a golden girdle, which may denote how precious are his love and affection for his people. His head and hairs white like wool and as snow, may signify his majesty, purity, and eternity. His eyes as a flame of fire, may represent his knowledge of the secrets of all hearts, and of the most distant events. His feet like fine brass burning in a furnace, may denote the firmness of his appointments, and the excellence of his proceedings. His voice as the sound of many waters, may represent the power of his word, to remove or to destroy. The seven stars were emblems of the ministers of the seven churches to which the apostle was ordered to write, and whom Christ upheld and directed. The sword represented his justice, and his word, piercing to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, #Heb 4:12|. His countenance was like the sun, when it shines clearly and powerfully; its strength too bright and dazzling for mortal eyes to behold. The apostle was overpowered with the greatness of the lustre and glory in which Christ appeared. We may well be contented to walk by faith, while here upon earth. The Lord Jesus spake words of comfort; Fear not. Words of instruction; telling who thus appeared. And his Divine nature; the First and the Last. His former sufferings; I was dead: the very same whom his disciples saw upon the cross. His resurrection and life; I have conquered death, and am partaker of endless life. His office and authority; sovereign dominion in and over the invisible world, as the Judge of all, from whose sentence there is no appeal. Let us listen to the voice of Christ, and receive the tokens of his love, for what can he withhold from those for whose sins he has died? May we then obey his word, and give up ourselves wholly to him who directs all things aright.

Commentary by Matthew Henry, 1710.

Discussion for Revelation 1

  • CARLOS RAMIREZ TREVINO on Revelation 1:8
    In Daniel 10:21, Gabriel makes reference to the Book of Truth and what is written in it. Is what is written in the Book of Truth or Book of Life, as it is called in the NT, what God knew would happen or what God wrote He would do? Are the names written in the Book of Life those God knew would believe, or those God decided to save? Are the vessels of Rom 9 what God knew He was going to do, or what God determined to do? Are God's Plans, plans or things He knew would take place?

    God created with a Purpose. He created with a Plan. Can an architect design a house without a Purpose? Can he build it without a Plan? To say that God only knew what was going to happen, make His statements about what He is going to do, meaningless. Did God just simply know the earth was going to be flooded and warned Noah? Or did God do it on Purpose? Did God promise not to destroy the earth again with a flood, because He knew that was what He was going to do? Is God a seer that merely reveals what He sees in the future?

    There is a misconception that because God is eternal and not subject to time and space, He can observe past, present and future. And that therefore, He knows everything. Is He like the train hobbyist that builds a train set with hills and roads and stands over it observing everything that takes place. So, did God create the universe and mankind, or was it something He just happened to know would happen on its own?

    If the Future has control, does God? I can be omniscient and know how everything functions, yet not know what I am going to do tomorrow. God is neither limited by His omniscience, nor by the Future. Have a look at Isa 23:8, "Who planned this against Tyre...? The LORD of Hosts planned it, to defile all its glorious beauty, to disgrace all the renowned of the earth." Not only is God telling us that He Planned it, He is telling us He Planned it with a Purpose.

    Your thinking is that God created, then stepped back and let things happen. But is that the case?
  • Rose on Revelation 1
    what day of the week did Jesus die
  • Geoff - in Reply on Revelation 1
    Rose, I'm only guessing you read Matthew Henry's commentary: "The day and time when he had this vision was the Lord's day, the Christian sabbath, the first day of the week, observed in remembrance of the resurrection of Christ. " It would be the Christian sabbath not Jewish. That's part of the deviation of Christianity from Jewish traditions or laws. You may know or remember some of the conflict where Jewish Christians were trying to hold onto Jewish laws such as circumcision or not eating pork. And, Paul contested against that. As, the Gentile Christians were being "shamed." We do that today, which type of church is more "right?" Were often reminded that we can disagree on the little things but to agree on the major thing that Jesus is our saviour and God our Father and Creator. The example of one of the disciples who who questioned the Samaritan who taught of Jesus but was not "one" of them. And, Jesus said he who speaks favorably of Him is for Him. Sorry for the tangent. I think people contend against calling Sunday the Sabbath because that's seen as Jewish terminology. Hope some of that was helpful.
  • Bob - in Reply on Revelation 1
    According to the Jewish/Christian scriptures, it was on The Jewish Passover Holiday in order for Jesus Christ to fulfill all that was written in the Torah (Law & Prophets) concerning Him as "...The Lamb of God..." (John 1:*29; 5:1-*39, 40-47*)which ALWAYS falls on the Lunar Hebrew Calendar month of Nisan the 14th day. Which this year (2020) occurs on the solar calendar day of April 8th, the 4th day of the week (wednesday) giving us exactly 3 days and 3 nights in the earth, exactly as Jesus had Prophesied earlier about His death, burial & His RESSURRECTION (John 20:1).

    Returning to our world on the 1st day of the week, after sundown Saturday, the beginning of the 1st day of the week we call Sunday. After being chosen 4 days earlier (Palm Sunday or Sat. the 10th day of the Hebrew month of Nisan scripturally, this year, God's Lunar based calendar overlay these days/dates this year exactly!)

    Kol Tuv i.e. be well


    *John 20:30-31*
  • Shirley Faulkenberry - in Reply on Revelation 1
    Awesome ,bob ,im so thankful peep are out there ,giving truth , just want to say spot on ,thank you holy father for giving us discernment!! on yeshua true day of crucifix!!
  • Jesse - in Reply on Revelation 1
    He died on a Friday, sometime shortly after 3 PM in the afternoon. The Sabbath day was on a Saturday, and no one could be hanging on a cross on the Sabbath day according to Jewish Law. On the day of preparation, which would have been Friday, Jesus and two others were crucified. They had to be dead before sundown because at 6 PM, that was the end of the workday for the Jews, and they couldn't still be hanging there on Saturday, the Sabbath Day. It says it was about the ninth hour, or 3 PM when Jesus' Spirit left Him. They came by to break the legs of the other two, but when they came to Jesus to break His legs, He was already dead, so they did not break His legs. That in itself was the fulfillment of Psalm 34:20, and Exodus 12:4.
  • Jesse - in Reply on Revelation 1
    My apologies for giving you Exodus 12:4. I meant to give Exodus Chapter 12 Verse 46, not Verse 4. Exodus 12:46 talks about the Passover Lamb, that they were not to break the bones of the Lamb, even after they kill it, the foreshadowing of the fulfillment of prophecy that when Messiah comes, the Lamb of God, to die for the sins of the world, that there was a prophecy about Him that not a bone would be broken.
  • Chris on Revelation 1
    Psalm 91 speaks of a destructive or pernicious disease that has far outreaching effects. There is no specific meaning of 'pestilence' in the original Greek, so it could also allow for disease destroying plant & animal life. Though here, it seems to apply to humans. The Bubonic Plague that affected Europe in the Middle Ages is a classic example of Pestilence that, I believe, killed over 30% of its population. The present Corona virus, could also be classified as such, because of its severity, range & resulting deaths. But whether this is a direct act of God against man, or even a prelude to further ravages to come upon us, remains debatable & no doubt, the main topic for some time yet.
  • Chris on Revelation 1
    Kristin, I believe that when a child responds in simple love & faith to the Lord, that child is precious & kept secure in God's Love - she is saved. His Eyes were always on you in spite of your wandering. I have a similar testimony having left the Lord for many years, being distracted & drawn into the world. But the Spirit was working in me & brought me to a deep repentance, with much tears, of my wicked & pitiful state. I've never looked back & only desire to live for Him & serve Him. The fact that you're concerned about it now, demonstrates God's ongoing interest & love for you. Read the Scriptures daily, particularly the Gospels, & allow His Spirit to bring you to repentance & joy.
  • Kristin Haney on Revelation 1
    If I were saved as a child but lost my way in my teen years am I still saved


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