Revelation of John
Dreams are valuable both from a spiritual and a psychological point of view. They are the part of the sleep cycle that happens right before awakening, and thus can be recalled with vividness, at least for a short time.
Visions are usually considered spiritual revelations and are often thought to be dreams in an awakened state. The difference is valuable, but can bring about similar insights. I have had many dreams that have helped me understand my present situation, and many that has given me a spiritual step up. Have you had such experiences that you would like to share?
John, the youngest of the original disciples of Jesus, was a prisoner on the island of Patmos when he was given a vision, perhaps many visions, of the end times and of heaven. It seems that many have a renewed interest in interpreting the Revelation of Jesus Christ given to John.
John had known about all of the other disciples dying for their Lord, and of many others who were severely persecuted for their faith in Jesus as Lord and Messiah. It was at this time of isolation and uncertainty that he was given this revelation for the people of God at that time, throughout the hard times over the centuries, and for us today. Are we the last generation before Jesus returns? Perhaps yes, and perhaps no. No matter, the warnings and the strong words of comfort pushes us forward to the high calling.
John addresses the seven churches of his time. Before he gets too deep into visions and other worldliness, he offers blessings and hope to all, whether or not they are on the correct path. His earthly sight, as well as his visions, are on JESUS. Let us focus on Jesus:
Grace to you and peace from Him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven Spirits who are before His throne, 5 and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler over the kings of the earth.
To Him who loved us and washed[a] us from our sins in His own blood, 6 and has made us kings[b] and priests to His God and Father, to Him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.
7 Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him, even they who pierced Him. And all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him. Even so, Amen.
8 “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End,”[c] says the Lord,[d] “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.”
First, John bestows blessings, which we all have a right to give to one another. Grace, which is undeserved gifts, and peace, which is difficult in persecution and uncertainty.
Skip down to verse 5 and see the assurance that Jesus loves so much that He cleansed from the worst offenses by paying with a criminal’s humiliating death on the cross. Christian Friend, never permit yourself to sanitize the cost of salvation. Death and red Blood pouring out are the requirements for sin.
People who are redeemed through the blood sacrifice of the Perfect Lamb of God are made into priests and kings inside God’s very real kingdom. John, and many of these folks were poor and made wretched for the sake of the Gospel. They needed to see how God sees them. So do we.
With that in mind, look at these initial descriptions of Our Lord. He is still:
He who is and who was and who is to come
The firstborn from the dead
Ruler over the kings of the earth
Cleansed us from our sins with His own blood
Made us kings and priests
Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end
If we focus on these true words concerning The Almighty, we can put one foot in front of the other even on the most difficult times. We can praise Him and have hope in His Kingdom, of which we belong.
Verse 7 assures us that BEHOLD He is coming. All will see Him, even those who pierced Him.
Keep on keeping on and look expectantly, for soon He will come and take you home. Take the gifts of grace and peace to help you trod the road ahead.