Archives For Book of Revelation

I. INTRODUCTION

A. Summary of Previous Lessons

B. Text of Rev 2:18-29

“18Write this letter to the angel of the church in Thyatira. This is the message from the Son of God, whose eyes are like flames of fire, whose feet are like polished bronze:
19I know all the things you do. I have seen your love, your faith, your service, and your patient endurance. And I can see your constant improvement in all these things.
20But I have this complaint against you. You are permitting that woman—that Jezebel who calls herself a prophet—to lead my servants astray. She teaches them to commit sexual sin and to eat food offered to idols. 21I gave her time to repent, but she does not want to turn away from her immorality.

22Therefore, I will throw her on a bed of suffering, and those who commit adultery with her will suffer greatly unless they repent and turn away from her evil deeds. 23I will strike her children dead. Then all the churches will know that I am the one who searches out the thoughts and intentions of every person. And I will give to each of you whatever you deserve.

24But I also have a message for the rest of you in Thyatira who have not followed this false teaching (‘deeper truths,’ as they call them—depths of Satan, actually). I will ask nothing more of you 25except that you hold tightly to what you have until I come. 26To all who are victorious, who obey me to the very end, To them I will give authority over all the nations. 27They will rule the nations with an iron rod and smash them like clay pots. 28They will have the same authority I received from my Father, and I will also give them the morning star!

29Anyone with ears to hear must listen to the Spirit and understand what he is saying to the churches.” (Revelation 2:18–29, NLT)

The Letter to the Church in Thyatira (Rev 2:18-29)

“The City of Thyatira” by Robert Walsh (1772-1852) and Thomas Allom (1804-1972)

C. History and Background of the City of Thyatira

Thyatira was a small thriving agricultural town. It was known for its purple dye. No one knows exactly how the church began in Thyatira. However, in Acts 16 Paul shares the gospel with a woman named Lydia who was a merchant of “expensive purple cloth” and was from Thyatira (Acts 16:14). Lydia was in Philippi when she met Paul, and she might have returned to Thyatira and helped to start the church there (Walvoord, Revelation, 69-70).

N.T. Wright provides some helpful background information on the city of Thyatira. The trade unions were known for smelting copper and bronze (maybe where the description of Jesus is chosen in Rev 2:18). More importantly, the local patron deity of the area and of the bronze trade was “Apollo Tyrimnaeus” who appeared on local coins together with the “son of God”, who was the Roman emperor.

The local trade unions (woolworkers, linen workers, makers of outer garments, dyers, leatherworkers, tanners, potters, bakers, slave dealers, and bronze smiths) regularly held meetings and ceremonies that included idol worship as a way to invoke divine favor onto the trade work. This put Christians in a difficult place if they expected to find work (Wright, Revelation for Everyone, 25; Metzger, Breaking the Code, 36).

II. JESUS ADDRESSES THE CHURCH IN THYATIRA (2:18) Continue Reading…

I. INTRODUCTION

A. Past Lessons

B. Text of Rev 1:1-8

1This is the Revelation of Jesus Christ which God gave him to show his servants what was necessary to happen soon. He sent his angel to communicate with his servant John. 2John testified about what he saw about the word of God and the testimony of Jesus Christ. 3Blessed is the one who reads and those who hear and obey this message of prophesy and what is written in it. For the time is near! 4This letter is from John to the seven churches in Asia. Grace and peace to you all from the one who is, the one who was, and the one who is still to come; from the seven-fold Spirit which is in front of God’s throne; 5and from Jesus Christ who is the martyr, the faithful, the firstborn of the dead and ruler over the kings of the earth. Jesus Christ is the one who, in his love for you all, released you all from your sin by his blood. 6Jesus has made you all a kingdom of priests in God and his father. To him glory and power forever, amen.”

7Look! He is coming out of the clouds and every eye will see him including those who pierced him and every person from every nation of the earth will mourn for him. Yes! Amen!

8“I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God—the one who is, was, and is still to come—the Almighty! 1

John's Introduction and Greeting to the Seven Churches (Rev 1:1-8)

Bamberg Apocalypse: “John Receives His Revelation” (1803)

II. A BRIEF INTRODUCTION TO JOHN’S LETTER (1:1-3)

A. The Revelation of Jesus Christ (v. 1)

“This is the Revelation of Jesus Christ which God gave him to show his servants what was necessary to happen soon. He sent his angel to communicate with his servant John.” (Rev 1:1) 2

1. Revelation from Jesus and about Jesus Continue Reading…

Notes:

  1. Unless otherwise noted, all translations are my own
  2. Unless otherwise noted, all translations are my own

The book of Revelation is one of the most difficult books to interpret. I like to think of the book of Revelation like a rainbow. From earth we can look into the sky and see a rainbow, but only half of it. Yet, if we go up in a plane we can often see an entire rainbow as one big circle. Our attempts to interpret the book of Revelation are like standing on earth looking at only half of a rainbow. Our position on the earth does not allow us to see the entire rainbow. The same is true for current believers living in the church age before the Tribulation. Because believers are waiting for the events of Revelation 4-22 to start, we can only see a partial interpretation of the works. However, once the events of Revelation 4-22 begin, it will be like looking at the entire rainbow from a plane. Because of someone’s place in the Tribulation they will be able to fully understand and interpret the events of Revelation 4-22.

An Introduction to the Book of Revelation

“St. John at Patmos” by Gustave Dore

I. AUTHOR (click here) Continue Reading…

When examining the book of Revelation it is important to look at different themes that are emphasized throughout the book. In addition to the themes of God and satanology, the ministry of angels–angelology–is an important theme in the book of Revelation.

Angelology in the Book of Revelation

I. ANGELS REVEAL THE VISION TO JOHN Continue Reading…

When interpreting the book of Revelation there are two important elements to remember.

  • First, Revelation is a fulfillment of the sixty-five books that came before it. There are hundreds of quotes, references, and allusions to both the Old and New Testaments in the book of Revelation. This means the reader needs to discern if Revelation is purposefully referencing a previous idea, quote, allusion, or does there just happen to be a commonality between what John writes and the previous writings in the Bible?
  • Second, an interpreting angel is sent from Jesus to help John understand what he is seeing. Examples of this interpreting angel or angels are seen in Rev 5:2, 4-6; 10:7-11; 14:13; 17:1-3, 15-18; 19:9-10; 21:9-10, 15; 22:6, 8-11. Because of this, when reading Revelation students need to constantly seek to understand what is said based on previous revelation in the Bible as well as the interpretations from the angel with John.

4 Methods of Interpretation for the Book of Revelation

“About twenty-five years ago upwards of five hundred works attempting to interpret the book of Revelation were on file in the British Museum. One man examined them all and testified that no two of them exactly agreed. These books, however, did fall into two general classes: (1) Those treating chapters 4–20 as history, and (2) those treating this portion as prophecy. Since then very many notable works on Revelation have been written and with a noticeable increase of certainty as to interpretation (note Dan. 12:9). The later expositions, almost exclusively, treat chapters 4–20 as prophecy” (Lewis Sperry Chafer, Must We Dismiss the Millennium? [Florida: Biblical Testimony League, 1921], 1).

I. HISTORICIST – A ROADMAP OF HISTORY Continue Reading…

This post starts a series through the book of Revelation. Before starting in Revelation 1 I want to give plenty of explanations for the authorship, textual design, interpretation, date, themes, and outlines for the book of Revelation. Today’s post looks at the evidence for and against John being the author of the book of Revelation.

The Author of the Book of Revelation

The author of the book of Revelation is the disciple of Jesus: John the apostle (1:1, 4, 9; 22:8). A brief survey of support for John’s authorship of this letter as well as counter arguments follow.

I. EVIDENCE JOHN WROTE REVELATION 
Continue Reading…