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The Revelation to John


  • Also known as Revelation, the Apocalypse stemming from the Greek word which means, disclosing, and/or unveiling
  • It is the last book of the canon of the New Testament
  • It presents itself as a work of prophecy (1.2; 22.10).
  • It is related to a group of writings which first surfaced in 250 BC/BCE, called the Apocalypse (God reveling Himself to Humans).
  • Author is Joh (1.1,4,9; 22.8)
  • We really do not know which John this is although scholars argue that it is the Apostle, son of Zebedee.
  • A. The Author is knowledgeable of the Hebrew Scripture. B. The Author has a literary style that was familiar to the Palestinian Jewish communities of the time.
  • These suggest that John was a Palestinian Jewish Christian who fled to the diaspora as a consequence of the First Jewish Revolt against the Romans around 66 AD//CE).
  • This John was well known to his audience (1.9)
  • He mentions the 12 Apostles as figures of the past (21.14), but he never refers to himself as one of them.
  • He addressed the book to the Seven Churches in Asia (1.4).
  • Christian (Xtian) communities in the Roman territory. A territory known today as Turkey.
  • These 7 Churches were different, although familiar with John.
  • These Churches suffered persecution because of the Word of God and the testimony of Jesus.
  • John tells the Churches to stand firm and never give up (3.3,19; 3.10)!
  • The destruction of the Temple 70 AD/CE, gave John good reason to identify Rome with Babylon as it was Babylon which destroyed Jerusalem in 586 BC/BCE.
  • With the worship of the Roman Emperor, and even as it was common to worship the emperor as a god, and as there were idols erected to in his honor, and even as Rome itself as monuments depicting the empire as the goddess, Roma, Revelation is a work showing a competition and comparison between the effects of loyalty to Rome and the Emperor vs., The One True God. For Revelation, the allegiance of the faithful belongs to God alone, but those who worship the Emperor or the Beast will be defeated.
  • The book goes from Hymns and psalms to gruesome warfare, plague and blood shedding.
  • At the end, God will conquer all evil.
  • Revelation is a mystery! But the book tells us that there are things greater than what is apparent. We must turn to God for discernment, so that we can understand, the symbolism and meaning behind the words of Revelation, so that in the end, we can overcome adversary.