Revelation 1:1-4a

Revelation 1:1-4a







Creation of the heavens and earth (chaps. 1–2)




Creation of the new heavens and earth (chaps. 21–22)


The first Adam reigning on earth (1:26)




The Last Adam reigning in glory (21:5)


Night and seas created (1:5, 10)




No more night; no more sea (21:1, 25)


A bride brought to Adam (2:18–25)




The Bride prepared for Christ (19:7ff)


A tree of life in Eden (2:9; 3:22)




A tree of life in the new creation (22:2)


Death and a curse (3:14, 17–19)




No more curse; no more death or tears (22:3)


Conflict between Christ and Satan (3:15)




Satan’s final doom (20:10)


Man driven from God’s face (3:23; 4:16)




Men see His face in glory (22:4)


Believers looking for a city (Heb. 11:13–16)




The holy city presented in glory (21:10)


“Where is the Lamb?” (22:7)




The Lamb reigns (22:3)


Satan utters the first lie (3:1)




Nothing that makes a lie enters the city (21:27)


Revelation, then, outlines God’s program for human history. What began ages ago in the first creation will ultimately be completed in the new creation. This is the “book with a blessing” (1:3, and see the six other “blessings” in 14:13; 16:15; 19:9; 20:6; 22:7, 14). It shows us that “history is His story”—that human affairs are in the hands of our victorious Christ. As we study this book, we should be encouraged, inspired to serve, and enabled to live clean lives, that we might be ready when He returns.[1]



1. The revealing of Jesus is for his servants to see him and what he is doing v. 1, 2

In this book, the Holy Spirit pulls back the curtain and gives us the privilege of seeing the glorified Christ in heaven and the fulfillment of His sovereign purposes in the world.[2]


A. The revelation of Jesus and his purposes builds faith in the church

When Daniel finished writing his prophecy, he was instructed to “shut up the words, and seal the book” (Dan. 12:4); but John was given opposite instructions: “Seal not the sayings of the prophecy of this book” (Rev. 22:10). Why? Since Calvary, the Resurrection, and the coming of the Holy Spirit, God has ushered in the “last days” (Heb. 1:1–2) and is fulfilling His hidden purposes in this world. “The time is at hand” (Rev. 1:3; 22:10).[3]

1. Our trust of the Lord’s way of doing time and events increases

a. Anxiety over Jesus’ handling of your personal life should melt away


This is an open book for all of Jesus’ people to see him as he is.


2. Our view of Jesus and our communication of Jesus must be the totality of

who he is

a. When we talk about Jesus, particularly in a culture saturated with

his name and not much truth about him, we must seek to show him

as he is not how he is

1. Jesus is man/God

2. Jesus is not feminine

3. Jesus is not weak

4. Jesus is not pacifist not does he default to war

5. Jesus is not a Republican

6. Jesus is not a Democrat

7. Jesus is the reigning King of all there is and has never

dropped the reigns as God and King


B. The revelation of Jesus and his purposes gives conviction to the churches actions

By conviction I mean that extra measure of tenacity that one displays when they know confidently the outcome of a struggle.


C. The revelation of Jesus and his purposes is so that we can know him better


Ultimately, Revelation is all about Jesus and the church’s need of and devotion to him.


“John’s prophecy is primarily the revelation of Jesus Christ, not the revelation of future events. You must not divorce the Person from the prophecy, for without the Person there could be no fulfillment of the prophecy. “He is not incidental to its action,” wrote Dr. Merrill Tenney. “He is its chief Subject.”


In Revelation 1–3, Christ is seen as the exalted Priest-King ministering to the churches.


In Revelation 4–5, He is seen in heaven as the glorified Lamb of God, reigning on the throne.


In Revelation 6–18, Christ is the Judge of all the earth; and in Revelation 19, He returns to earth as the conquering King of kings.


The book closes with the heavenly Bridegroom ushering His bride, the church, into the glorious heavenly city. Whatever you do as you study this book, get to know your Savior better.”[4]



2. Readers, hearers and doers are blessed v. 3

“The blessing of v. 3 is the first of seven contained in the book (see 14:13; 16:15; 19:9 (this passage gives some insight into the intended nature of prophetic revelation, and it is the person of Jesus Christ); 20:6; 22:7, 14). It declares the ‘happiness’ of one who reads the Revelation to a congregation and of those who both hear it and take its message to heart. (The Hebrew behind blessed has the sense of ‘Oh the happiness of!’)”[5]

A. Read Revelation over and over as we study it together

B. Study the words, sentences, paragraphs and entire context of the book

C. Be present to walk in the “cloud” of corporate worship as we unfold the book’s

contents through the spiritual dynamic of preaching

D. Be in community to discuss this. Our wrestling and learning is not meant to be done

in isolation, but in the dynamic of community


3. This is a letter to the church v. 4a

This letter has profound purpose for the church and that purpose is found in the person and work of Jesus as our Prophet, Priest, King, Friend and Brother.

A. Jesus addresses his church personally via a letter

B. There is fellowship found in the living words of a personal letter from our King

C. There is instruction that will not fail in a letter from our King


Warren W. Wiersbe, Wiersbe’s Expository Outlines on the New Testament (Wheaton, Ill.: Victor Books, 1997), 793-94.

Warren W. Wiersbe, The Bible Exposition Commentary (Wheaton, Ill.: Victor Books, 1996), Re 1:1.

Warren W. Wiersbe, The Bible Exposition Commentary (Wheaton, Ill.: Victor Books, 1996), Re 1:1.

Warren W. Wiersbe, The Bible Exposition Commentary (Wheaton, Ill.: Victor Books, 1996), Re 1:1.

D. A. Carson, New Bible Commentary : 21st Century Edition, 4th ed. (Leicester, England; Downers Grove, Ill., USA: Inter-Varsity Press, 1994), Re 1:1–8.


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