The Church Is Meant to Understand Revelation
The Revelation given to the apostle, John, was not meant to be obscure information to leave the Church bewildered and at odds with one another about its meaning. Instead, it was knowledge and insight given by God so that the “seven churches” and, by implication, the Church of every era would be comforted and warned. They would reflect on their behavior; witness multiple judgments by Jesus on the people of the earth, and face troubles from numerous and varied Satanic-inspired manifestations of the beast and the false prophet.
1. Old Testament Terms
- The book uses OT terms figuratively.
- The author often interprets the meaning of terms used figuratively.
- The author has guided how to interpret where the figurative meaning isn’t explained.
2. New Testament Theology
- The book confirms NT teaching. It gives clarity to what has already been taught.
- We don’t get a new revelation, only a dramatized revelation of what has been taught.
- There is evidence that the numbers in Revelation are to be understood figuratively.
- Numbers associated with the Old Testament and the New Testament have been used with a figurative meaning.
- The author has guided the recipients on how to interpret when the figurative meaning isn’t explained.
4. Parallel Visions of the Church Era
- Revelation is not chronological but is a series of parallel visions of different focuses over the Church era.
- A chronological view of Revelation distorts and falsifies the intention.
- A futurist view of Revelation distorts and falsifies the intention.
Features of Revelation, a.k.a. the Apocalypse
1. Revelation reaffirms that Jesus is equal to the Father and is God by
- the descriptions of Jesus and
- His actions.
2. Jesus continually judges
- the “seven churches” which symbolically represent His Church;
- the people of the earth through the seals, trumpets, and bowls;
- evil world leaders, pictured as the beast;
- evil religious leaders, pictured as the second beast, a.k.a. the false prophet;
3. Christ’s Church is depicted as
- “the seven churches” (Rev. 1:4, 1:11, 20),
- “the new Jerusalem” (Rev. 3:12, 21:2),
- “all the tribes of Israel” (Rev. 12:2),
- the “144000” (Rev. 12:2),
- “two witnesses” (Rev. 11:3),
- “a woman” (Rev. 12:6),
- . . .
4. The prophecy is not about the end but about Jesus with the Church on her journey in the world for
- it deals with church behavior and
- the final chapter depicts leaves “for the healing of the nations” (Rev. 22:2).
1. What are Jesus’ thoughts toward me, my local church, and the entire Church? Consider what He said to each of the seven churches in Revelation Chapters 2 and 3.
- The church in Ephesus, who had lost their first love.
- The church in Smyrna was under Satanic persecution.
- . . .
2. Who is Jesus currently judging with war, famine, plague, etc.?
- Somalia – famine,
- Russia and Ukraine – war,
- The entire world – plague (Covid-19),
- . . .
3. Who are the current manifestations of the beast?
- . . .
4. Who are the current manifestations of the false prophet?
- The Russian Orthodox Church for supporting Putin by endorsing the invasion of Ukraine.
- Evangelicals in America for their support of Donald Trump.
- Evangelicals in Brazil for their support of Bolsonaro.
- . . .
Revelation has been invaluable to Christians of all eras who have interpreted it properly. By way of this dramatic blueprint, God has given us a pattern that reoccurs in every era of the Church. Revelation, therefore, pertains to me and you, to all churches, to continual judgments occurring around the world, and to rogue religious and political leaders that spring up from time to time.
3 thoughts on “Getting Revelation: Part 1 – Interpreting the Apocalypse”
Reblogged this on Restore the Word.
Brave, clear and helpful in these days of ‘evangelical’/political confusion. Regards.
Thanks, Errol. Yes, these are crazy times, especially among evangelicals.