Bible Passage: Revelation 1:1-8
Key Verse: Vs. 3 Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written in it; for the time is near.
The book of Revelation is one of the most powerful books in the Bible as it deals with prophesies and the fulfillment of what God started in Genesis. The grand and glorious theme of the book is Lord Jesus Christ. Today, God is looking for more dedicated servants like John to whom He may reveal His Kingdom’s mysteries. In Jeremiah 33: 3, God said, ‘Call to me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know.’ Is Church ready to listen to His voice when the days are very near? Are we serious about the future of the world? Chapter 1:1-8 gives the glimpse about why the book is important for Christians.
Firstly, this passage reminds us that it is God’s desire for the Church to read, listen as well as to follow what is written in the book. To those who take this book seriously, God’s promise of special blessing will flow in their lives as great and manifold are His blessings. In Psalm 119:1, Psalmist writes, ‘Blessed are those who keep his decrees, who seek him with their whole heart.’ Every Word written in God’s Word is precious in shaping our spiritual lives.
Secondly, this passage excites us to know more about our Lord Jesus Christ. He is not just a ‘Jesus of Nazareth’ but He is introduced as: God’s faithful witness (1:5b); the firstborn from the dead (1:5c); ruler of the kings of this earth (1:5d); the Alpha and Omega (1:8a); the Eternal One (1:8b). The entire book reveals Jesus Christ as the Priest-King (chap. 1), the Judge of the churches (2–3), the Creator (4), the Redeemer (5), the Lord of history (6–18), the Conqueror (19–20), and the Bridegroom (21–22). Hence, Jesus displays His power and authority in the Church, in the world as well as in the lives of every believer.
Thirdly, this passage gives identity, hope and encouragement to those Christians who truly follow Him in the midst of suffering, hardship and severe persecution for their faith in Jesus Christ. In verse 5 and 6, Church is seen as a redeemed work of Christ by His precious blood and has given authority to every believer to be the kings and the priests in His kingdom. What we lost in the Garden of Eden, much more we have gained by the redemptive work of Christ. We are more than conquers and he has sanctified us so that we may become eternal part of His kingdom.
Fourthly, this passage tells us about the Second Coming of Lord Jesus Christ as mentioned in Rev 1:7, ‘Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him.’ Lord’s coming is very near and there are more than 300 references alone in the NT about this. In John 14:3 Jesus himself prophesied about His coming just before His crucifixion. At the time of Jesus’ ascension two angels appeared to His followers, saying that He would return in the same manner as they had seen Him go (Acts 1:11). His coming will be personal, bodily, and visible. The believer’s task is not to try to determine the time of the Second Coming but to share the gospel message diligently until He returns and be ready to receive Him.