Saturday, January 5, 2013

Introduction to The Revelation of Saint John the Divine

The Revelation of Saint John the Divine
The introduction.
Quoted from King James Version of the Bible. (Words in brackets are my thoughts)

1:1 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:
(When John wrote this down he was expecting the prophesies to be fulfilled very soon. Many were expecting the return of Christ during the same generation as when He ascended.)

1:2 Who bare record of the word of God, and of the testimony of Jesus Christ, and of all things that he saw.
( This is a record of what John saw without interpretation. He did not understand the meaning of much of what 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.
(Again the emphasis on this happening very soon.)
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;
(John addresses this to the seven Churches in Asia and says it is from himself and the seven Spirits)
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,
(He also includes Jesus Himself in the salutation. First begotten of the dead perhaps because He rose from the dead. Prince of the kings because He is the True Sovereign.  Jesus loved us so much that He offered up His life. Symbolically He died so that we could be cleansed from sin, the symbolic washing in the 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.
(We are to carry on and spread His teachings as we watch for the day of His return.)
1:7 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.
(The clouds symbolically obscure our vision. All see the light but some may be slow to recognize its source because of the clouds.

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.
(He was, He is and He shall be. Eternity is a concept we cannot grasp. Time and space are limitations of the physical world. In the spiritual we do not have such limitations. Christ, the Messiah was manifested in the physical body of Jesus, but He was much greater than that body. Christ was never limited to a single physical body. He has always existed and will always exist and He can Manifest Himself whenever and however He chooses. None have the right to question His choice. However in His kindness to us He tells us how we can know.)
From the Gospel of John we read;
10:1 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber.
10:2 But he that entereth in by the door is the shepherd of the sheep.
10:3 To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calleth his own sheep by name, and leadeth them out.
10:4 And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice.
10:5 And a stranger will they not follow, but will flee from him: for they know not the voice of strangers.
10:6 This parable spake Jesus unto them: but they understood not what things they were which he spake unto them.
10:7 Then said Jesus unto them again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep.
10:8 All that ever came before me are thieves and robbers: but the sheep did not hear them.
10:9 I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.
10:10 The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.
10:11 I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.
10:12 But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth: and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep.
10:13 The hireling fleeth, because he is an hireling, and careth not for the sheep.
10:14 I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine.
10:15 As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep.
10:16 And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd.
10:24 Then came the Jews round about him, and said unto him, How long dost thou make us to doubt? If thou be the Christ, tell us plainly.
10:25 Jesus answered them, I told you, and ye believed not: the works that I do in my Father's name, they bear witness of me.
10:26 But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you.
10:27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:
10:28 And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.
10:29 My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand.
10:30 I and my Father are one.
(The true sheep of Christ will recognize His voice wherever it comes from. They follow Him because they hear His voice. Many are the wolves in sheep’s clothing who try to lead the sheep astray, but they recognize the voice of their Lord and Saviour and the follow Him. Even though they are faced with calamity and death they will not turn away from their Lord. Even though all the earth becomes their enemy, they will gladly be slaughtered by an earthly army so they can go to their Heavenly Home. They have been given eternal life and they understand this temporary physical life is not important. They lay down their physical life with joy so they can be with the Good Shepherd.)
(In the last days (in which we are living) Christ is gathering all His sheep into One Fold. )
10:16 And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd.
(We are now witnessing the gathering of the sheep. People of diverse backgrounds, cultures and religions are being called by the Lord and Hear His Voice. Excitedly they tell others, and although the clouds of superstition, tradition, and false education obscure the light of the Revelation of God, once one  recognizes the source of the Light and Hears the Voice of the Lord, he or she cannot go back but must remain a part of that Great and Glorious Sheepfold.)

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