The Revelation of St. John the Divine
This is the last Book in the Bible, Revelation. The introduction page in my Study Bible for Revelation had this caution: The fundamental truths of Revelation are available to those who read the Book for its message! For the reader: don’t get caught up in its details.
The Revelation of St. John the Divine, was written by John the apostle and author of the Gospel of John, (1:1). John had been exiled to the Island of Patmos, which is believed to have had a colony for prisoners. While there one Sunday (Lord’s Day) he was caught up in the Spirit and recorded the vision he saw – God’s revelation. (Notice it is Revelation, there is only 1 revelation in the Book.)
Revelation is the only Book of the N.T. of Apocalyptic Literature. In Greek, ‘Apocalypse’ is the title Revelation. This is the unveiling, disclosure and revelation known only by God. This has to do with the end times and the coming of God’s new kingdom. Symbols, images and numbers are used to represent various happenings and meanings.
The Roman empire was beginning to persecute the Christian worshipers. Domitian, the emperor, demanded total obedience of Roman rules. He also demanded that the emperor be worship and called God, which went against the worshipers beliefs. To communicate among themselves, the Christian worshipers developed symbols, signs, images, and numbers that contained messages.
Revelation is a battle between God and satan. Of the 2 warring powers, God is dominant. Satan plans and schemes chaos and destruction, but God has control. There will be a final battle. In God’s army, Jesus Christ is central figure. He is first and last, playing various roles. He is fulfillment of the believers hopes no matter the circumstance.
Revelation is written for the first century Christians that faced persecution from Roman rule. AND for all following generations to come. It assures us that God is present, purposeful and powerful, still today and for all the tomorrows to come.
A PERSONAL NOTE: In these thumbnail sketches I’ve shared with you, I pray you have received information to encourage you to make dwelling in God’s word a daily practice. It doesn’t take too long to read a few chapters --- unless you find a “bunny trail” to explore.
The information I’ve shared for all of the Books in the Bible, come from the introduction pages in my Study Bible, just before each Book; and also, Nelson’s Illustrated Bible Dictionary.