The Everlasting Gospel in Revelation

Revelation Chapter 1

Revelation Chapter 1:1 The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to show unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass; and he sent and signified [it] by his angel unto his servant John:

1:2 Who bare record of the word of God, and of the testimony of Jesus Christ, and of all things that he saw. 1:3 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.

1:4 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;

1:5 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,

1:6 And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him [be] glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.

1:7 Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him,

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and they [also] which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen.

1:8 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.

1:9 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.

1:10 I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day, and heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet,

1:11 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.

1:12 And I turned to see the voice that spake with me. And being turned, I saw seven golden candlesticks; 1:13 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.

1:14 His head and [his] hairs [were] white like wool, as white as snow; and his eyes [were] as a flame of fire; 1:15 And his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and his voice as the sound of many waters. 1:16 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.

1:17 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:

1:18 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.

1:19 Write the things which thou hast seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter; 1:20 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.

7~

THE EVERLASTING GOSPEL IDANIEL & REVELATION

The first and most important thing in life is to see Jesus and to know Him. This is the only way you can satisfy Him. To invite Jesus into your heart—to know Him—is the only way you can make Him happy. There is no other way. And to make Jesus pleased and happy is our greatest opportunity in life! The book of Daniel opens with the story of the captivity and experience of four teenagers who had an experience with God. The book of Revelation

opens with a view of Jesus, the Son of God, given to one of His disciples in his old age, who was imprisoned for his faith in Jesus. It is a view of God that gives and imparts life. Our greatest need is to see God, who He is and what He is doing. Daniel, Hananiah,

Mishael, and Azariah acted as they did and believed as they did because of their knowledge, and experience with God. Revelation

reveals that the whole church can have the same experience with God as those four worthies. What is your knowledge, experience,

and view of God? What is mine? Both the books of Daniel and the Revelation reveal our Lord Jesus Christ. This revelation of Jesus is given to us from God, the Father of Jesus. In Revelation,

as in Daniel, God tells us that He wants us not only to see and know Jesus, but also to know what “must shortly come to pass”. The book of Revelation amplifies both the view of Jesus and those things that “must shortly come to pass.” What is the connection between seeing Jesus and knowing what things are shortly coming

to pass? It is all about Jesus! If we see Jesus and keep Him in mind and in mental and emotional sight, we become like Him in character. This reveals our beautiful Jesus! This makes Jesus look good. If, in addition, we know what is coming to pass in this world, that knowledge puts us in a position not to fall apart when the world starts falling apart. This also makes Jesus look good! The image of Jesus in us is the connection and the reason for His giving us both a view of Himself and a view of world events that are shortly coming to pass. What a wonderful Savior!God’s blessing is pronounced in verse 3 on those who read, and hear, and do or keep the words of Jesus in Revelation.In verse 4, the Father is presented as the source of grace and peace and as being in the past, present, and future. The Holy

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Spirit is presented as being seven in number and being before the throne of the Father. The number seven speaks of completeness and perfection. This means that the Holy Spirit is complete and everlasting. Jesus is presented to view as the faithful and true Witness, the first begotten of the dead and the prince of the kings of the earth. Jesus is presented as the One who loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood. Jesus is the One who has made us kings and priests unto God who is the Father of Jesus (v. 6). All of these presentations and representations are judgment scene pictures—grace, peace, faithful and true Witness before the throne of God.In verse 7, reference to the second coming of Jesus is made. The second coming of Jesus is the change-over point between time and eternity. This momentous time is just before us.In verse 8, Jesus announces that He is the First and the Last, the Beginning, and the Ending, the Lord which was, is, and is to come, the Almighty. This is the picture of Jesus that we are to keep constantly before us until we become changed into His character-image (2 Corinthians 3:18). This is the everlasting gospel!John was in exile because the ire of pagan Rome had been stirred up by the apostate people of God against Jesus Christ, their Lord and Savior! On the seventh-day Sabbath (the only Lord’s day known in the Bible), the Holy Spirit gave John the vision of Jesus and signified it by His angel. John heard Jesus talking to Him.Verses 12–16 describe the risen, glorified Jesus ministering in the Holy Place of the Sanctuary in heaven. The glorious sight of his risen Lord caused John to fall as dead at the feet of Jesus. Jesus strengthens John with the assurance that He is the same Jesus that was dead and is now alive for evermore! He tells John that He has the keys of hell and of death. Then Jesus tells John to write letters to the churches telling them what he saw. The seven churches mean the totality, the whole church family, represented by the perfect, complete number seven. These messages are for all churches in all ages in all places. Christ is the light of the world (John 8:12). His followers are to reflect His light to the world (Matt. 5:14). Thus the seven candlesticks are His churches (Rev

78 ~ THE EVERLASTING GOSPEL IDANIEL & REVELATION 1:20) which represent Jesus through the Holy Spirit before the throne of God as the source of light (truth) in the world. Through the power of the Holy Spirit the churches are to be a source of and representation of Jesus and His grace and power in His kingdom on earth. The pastors (messengers) of the churches (the stars) are also representatives of Jesus—the bright and morning Star (Revelation 22:16). Jesus holds the pastors of the churches in His right hand. Jesus then sends messages to seven churches. Seven, the number representing completeness, represents His church—His people—until the end of time. It is through and by means of the church that God proclaims the everlasting gospel to the world.God works within the context of reality. There are wheat and tares in the church of God. However, a separation will and must come. In the Review and Herald March 19, 1895 it is written: “The Lord is soon to come; there must be a refining, winnowing process in every church, for there are among us wicked men who do not love the truth. There is need of a transformation of character. Will the church arise and put on her beautiful garments, the righteousness of Christ? It is soon to be seen who are vessels unto honor.” The reality of the power of Jesus in the church is seen in changed lives—in transformation of character. We are told in volume six of the SDA Bible Commentary page 1071:Justification by faith in Christ will be made manifest in transformation of character. This is the sign to the world of the truth of the doctrines we profess. The daily evidence that we are a living church is seen in the fact that we are practicing the Word. A living testimony goes forth to the world in consistent Christian action. The lack of this living witness in the churches is what is delaying the second coming of Jesus. It is time for the fulfillment of the prophecy of Isaiah 60:1–3:Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the LORD is risen upon thee. For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but the LORD shall arise upon

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thee, and his glory shall be seen upon thee. And the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising.