Amen! Hallelujah! – A Study of the
Book of Revelation
By Dale Wells
Copyright © 2013
Dale R. Wells
Scripture quoted by per...
LESSON 1
A BOOK TO BE UNDERSTOOD
Revelation 1:1-3
2
GOD INTENDED REVELATION TO BE
UNDERSTANDABLE
Revelation 1:1-3
3
Revelation 1
[1] The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him
to show his servants what must happen very soon. He
ma...
Revelation 1
[1] The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him
to show his servants what must happen very soon. He
ma...
Revelation 1
[1] The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him
to show his servants what must happen very soon. He
ma...
Revelation 1
[1] The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him
to show his servants what must happen very soon. He
ma...
Revelation 1
[1] The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him
to show his servants what must happen very soon. He
ma...
Revelation 1
[1] The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him
to show his servants what must happen very soon. He
ma...
It is not a “mystery”, but a “revelation”
Mysterion
• “a secret”
• “a mystery”
Apocalypsis
• “an unveiling”
• “a revealing...
Ephesians 3:3-6
… by revelation the divine secret was made known to me,
as I wrote before briefly. [4] When reading this, ...
THE BOOK BEGINS WITH A SERIES
OF BLESSINGS
Makarios – word of the Beatitudes
12
Matthew 5:3-12
“Blessed are the poor in spirit … [4] “Blessed are those who
mourn … [5] “Blessed are the meek ... [6] “Ble...
Revelation 1:3 Blessed is/are …
• Oral reading to a congregation
The one who
reads … aloud
14
Revelation 1:3 Blessed is/are …
• Oral reading to a congregation
The one who
reads … aloud
• “Understand”Those who hear
15
An example of “hear” vs. “understand”
Acts 9:7 KJV And
the men … hearing
a voice
Acts 22:9 KJV And
they that were with
me ...
Revelation 1:3 Blessed is/are …
• Oral reading to a congregation
The one who
reads … aloud
• “Understand”Those who hear
• ...
TWO POPULAR APPROACHES TO
THE BOOK OF REVELATION
18
Historicists see history unfolding from
the 1st Century to the end of the world
16th • Martin Luther, John Calvin, and Pro...
Each author reapplies history to put
himself in the last days
Predicted the
world’s end in
1794
Charles Wesley
Predicted t...
Futurists believe it only deals with the
end of time
John Nelson
Darby
C.I. Scofield Hal Lindsey Tim LaHaye
21
THE TIME FRAME OF THE BOOK IS
SET BY TWO PHRASES
22
First: “What must happen very soon”
Revelation 1:1 The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God
gave him to show his servants...
Some say “certainly” – Certainly Not!
Acts 22:17-18 … I
fell into a trance
and saw the Lord
saying to me,
Hurry and get ou...
Second: “The time is near”
Revelation 1:3 Blessed is the one who reads the words of
this prophecy aloud, and blessed are t...
The expression is used elsewhere
Mark 1:14-15 ….
Jesus went into
Galilee and
proclaimed the
gospel of God.
He said, “The
t...
THREE REASONS FOR INTERPRETING
REVELATION IN LIGHT OF ITS TIME
27
Its time of fulfillment was close at hand
It was intended to be read, understood and obeyed
It was a “revelation” to its r...
Picture yourself as a Christian in First
Century Pergamum
29
WHAT IS THE SIGNIFICANCE OF
REVELATION FOR US TODAY?
30
Immediate/remote nature of prophecy
Isaiah 7:14 Look, this young woman is about to
conceive and will give birth to a son. ...
Immediate/remote nature of prophecy
Psalms 16:10 You will not abandon me to Sheol;
you will not allow your faithful follow...
Repetitive themes of judgment
Isaiah 13:1-13 This is a message about Babylon … [9] Look,
the LORD's day of judgment is com...
Repetitive themes of judgment
Joel 3:14-16 Crowds, great crowds are in the valley of
decision, for the day of the LORD is ...
Two questions to ask of Revelation
What did it mean
to the Christians of
the First Century?
What does it mean
to Christian...
KEYS TO UNDERSTANDING THE
BOOK OF REVELATION
36
All literature is not read alike
Elizabeth
Barrett
Browning
Edgar Allan
Poe
William
Shakespeare
Stephen
King
37
The Book of Revelation is an example
of the apocalyptic genre
38
The Book of Revelation is an example
of the apocalyptic genre
39
Read Revelation the way you watch
animations – use your imagination!
Dragon and
Beast
Lamb Woman on
Beast
40
THE MEANINGS OF SOME SYMBOLS
ARE SELF-EVIDENT
41
One like a son of man
Who is this?
This is clearly
Jesus!
42
The Lion of Judah/Lamb of God
Who is this?
It has to be
Jesus!
43
The two witnesses
Who are they?
Elijah
Moses
44
The radiant woman and her child
Who is the
woman?
Mary
Who is the
child?
Jesus
Who is the
dragon?
Wait and
see!
45
The conquering king on a white horse
Who is this?
Jesus
46
THE TEXT EXPLAINS THE LESS
OBVIOUS SYMBOLS
47
What are the stars and lampstands?
Revelation 1:20 The mystery
of the seven stars that you
saw in my right hand and the
se...
Who is the dragon?
Revelation 12:9 So that
huge dragon - the ancient
serpent, the one called the
devil and Satan, who
dece...
Who is the woman riding the beast?
Revelation 17:18 … the great city that has
sovereignty over the kings of the earth.”
Re...
What is the sea beast?
Revelation 13:1-8 … [7] The beast … was
given ruling authority over every tribe,
people, language, ...
What is the earth beast?
Resembles
lamb; sounds
like dragon!
Forces
worship of sea
beast!
AKA the false
prophet
Satan uses...
REVELATION IS A PUZZLE TO SOLVE,
NOT A MYSTERY TO IGNORE
53
You start with what you know:
Lamb is Jesus
Dragon is Satan
Beast is Roman Empire
Heads are the emperors
Earth beast is th...
The Book of Revelation for Dummies
God Rules!
Jesus is Lord!
We win!
55
OPPOSED PAIRS ARE A FEATURE OF
THE BOOK
56
There are two lambs
Lamb of God Lamb that sounds
like the dragon
57
Two women oppose one another
Prostitute who
is judged
Bride of the
Lamb
58
There are two who claim dominion
God on his throne Dragon who tries to
usurp God’s throne
59
Two marks on people’s foreheads
Some wear the
seal of God
The rest wear the
mark of the beast
60
Kings of earth oppose the King of Kings
61
LOOKING AHEAD
Our next lesson will focus on the symbolic
use of numbers in the Book of Revelation.
62
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Lesson 1 of 26 in a Bible Class on the Book of Revelation. This class was presented 9/15/2013 at Palm Desert Church of Christ by Dale Wells

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2013 09-15 rv01 a book to be understood - revelation 1 1-3

  1. 1. Amen! Hallelujah! – A Study of the Book of Revelation By Dale Wells Copyright © 2013 Dale R. Wells Scripture quoted by permission. All scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the NET Bible® copyright ©1996-2006 by Biblical Studies Press, L.L.C. www.bible.org. All rights reserved. This material is available in its entirety as a free download or online web use at http://www.netbible.org/. All rights reserved. 1
  2. 2. LESSON 1 A BOOK TO BE UNDERSTOOD Revelation 1:1-3 2
  3. 3. GOD INTENDED REVELATION TO BE UNDERSTANDABLE Revelation 1:1-3 3
  4. 4. Revelation 1 [1] The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants what must happen very soon. He made it clear by sending his angel to his servant John, [2] who then testified to everything that he saw concerning the word of God and the testimony about Jesus Christ. [3] Blessed is the one who reads the words of this prophecy aloud, and blessed are those who hear and obey the things written in it, because the time is near! 4
  5. 5. Revelation 1 [1] The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants what must happen very soon. He made it clear by sending his angel to his servant John, [2] who then testified to everything that he saw concerning the word of God and the testimony about Jesus Christ. [3] Blessed is the one who reads the words of this prophecy aloud, and blessed are those who hear and obey the things written in it, because the time is near! 5
  6. 6. Revelation 1 [1] The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants what must happen very soon. He made it clear by sending his angel to his servant John, [2] who then testified to everything that he saw concerning the word of God and the testimony about Jesus Christ. [3] Blessed is the one who reads the words of this prophecy aloud, and blessed are those who hear and obey the things written in it, because the time is near! 6
  7. 7. Revelation 1 [1] The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants what must happen very soon. He made it clear by sending his angel to his servant John, [2] who then testified to everything that he saw concerning the word of God and the testimony about Jesus Christ. [3] Blessed is the one who reads the words of this prophecy aloud, and blessed are those who hear and obey the things written in it, because the time is near! 7
  8. 8. Revelation 1 [1] The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants what must happen very soon. He made it clear by sending his angel to his servant John, [2] who then testified to everything that he saw concerning the word of God and the testimony about Jesus Christ. [3] Blessed is the one who reads the words of this prophecy aloud, and blessed are those who hear and obey the things written in it, because the time is near! 8
  9. 9. Revelation 1 [1] The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants what must happen very soon. He made it clear by sending his angel to his servant John, [2] who then testified to everything that he saw concerning the word of God and the testimony about Jesus Christ. [3] Blessed is the one who reads the words of this prophecy aloud, and blessed are those who hear and obey the things written in it, because the time is near! 9
  10. 10. It is not a “mystery”, but a “revelation” Mysterion • “a secret” • “a mystery” Apocalypsis • “an unveiling” • “a revealing” • “a disclosure” 10
  11. 11. Ephesians 3:3-6 … by revelation the divine secret was made known to me, as I wrote before briefly. [4] When reading this, you will be able to understand my insight into this secret of Christ. [5] Now this secret was not disclosed to people in former generations as it has now been revealed to his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit, [6] namely, that through the gospel the Gentiles are fellow heirs, fellow members of the body, and fellow partakers of the promise in Christ Jesus. 11
  12. 12. THE BOOK BEGINS WITH A SERIES OF BLESSINGS Makarios – word of the Beatitudes 12
  13. 13. Matthew 5:3-12 “Blessed are the poor in spirit … [4] “Blessed are those who mourn … [5] “Blessed are the meek ... [6] “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness … [7] “Blessed are the merciful … [8] “Blessed are the pure in heart … [9] “Blessed are the peacemakers … [10] “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness … [11] “Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you and say all kinds of evil things about you falsely on account of me … 13
  14. 14. Revelation 1:3 Blessed is/are … • Oral reading to a congregation The one who reads … aloud 14
  15. 15. Revelation 1:3 Blessed is/are … • Oral reading to a congregation The one who reads … aloud • “Understand”Those who hear 15
  16. 16. An example of “hear” vs. “understand” Acts 9:7 KJV And the men … hearing a voice Acts 22:9 KJV And they that were with me … heard not the voice Acts 9:7 … the men … heard the voice Acts 22:9 Those who were with me did not understand the voice … 16
  17. 17. Revelation 1:3 Blessed is/are … • Oral reading to a congregation The one who reads … aloud • “Understand”Those who hear • “Observe” or “obey”Those who obey 17
  18. 18. TWO POPULAR APPROACHES TO THE BOOK OF REVELATION 18
  19. 19. Historicists see history unfolding from the 1st Century to the end of the world 16th • Martin Luther, John Calvin, and Protestant Reformers 17th • Isaac Newton and Matthew Henry 18th • Charles Wesley (Methodist) 19th • William Miller (Adventist) and Albert Barnes 19
  20. 20. Each author reapplies history to put himself in the last days Predicted the world’s end in 1794 Charles Wesley Predicted the world’s end Oct. 22, 1844 William Miller Predicted the world’s end Sept. 6, 1994, May 21, 2011, Oct. 21, 2011 Harold Camping 20
  21. 21. Futurists believe it only deals with the end of time John Nelson Darby C.I. Scofield Hal Lindsey Tim LaHaye 21
  22. 22. THE TIME FRAME OF THE BOOK IS SET BY TWO PHRASES 22
  23. 23. First: “What must happen very soon” Revelation 1:1 The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants what must happen very soon. Revelation 22:6 Then the angel said to me, “…The Lord, the God of the spirits of the prophets, has sent his angel to show his servants what must happen soon.” 23
  24. 24. Some say “certainly” – Certainly Not! Acts 22:17-18 … I fell into a trance and saw the Lord saying to me, Hurry and get out of Jerusalem quickly … Galatians 1:6-7 I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you by the grace of Christ and are following a different gospel … 2 Timothy 4:9 Make every effort to come to me soon. 24
  25. 25. Second: “The time is near” Revelation 1:3 Blessed is the one who reads the words of this prophecy aloud, and blessed are those who hear and obey the things written in it, because the time is near! Revelation 22:10 Then he said to me, “Do not seal up the words of the prophecy contained in this book, because the time is near. 25
  26. 26. The expression is used elsewhere Mark 1:14-15 …. Jesus went into Galilee and proclaimed the gospel of God. He said, “The time is fulfilled and the kingdom of God is near. … Romans 10:8-9 But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” … Philippians 4:5 Let everyone see your gentleness. The Lord is near! 26
  27. 27. THREE REASONS FOR INTERPRETING REVELATION IN LIGHT OF ITS TIME 27
  28. 28. Its time of fulfillment was close at hand It was intended to be read, understood and obeyed It was a “revelation” to its readers, not a “mystery” 28
  29. 29. Picture yourself as a Christian in First Century Pergamum 29
  30. 30. WHAT IS THE SIGNIFICANCE OF REVELATION FOR US TODAY? 30
  31. 31. Immediate/remote nature of prophecy Isaiah 7:14 Look, this young woman is about to conceive and will give birth to a son. You, young woman, will name him Immanuel. Matthew 1:23 "Look! The virgin will conceive and bear a son, and they will call him Emmanuel," which means "God with us." 31
  32. 32. Immediate/remote nature of prophecy Psalms 16:10 You will not abandon me to Sheol; you will not allow your faithful follower to see the Pit. Acts 2:27 … you will not leave my soul in Hades, nor permit your Holy One to experience decay. 32
  33. 33. Repetitive themes of judgment Isaiah 13:1-13 This is a message about Babylon … [9] Look, the LORD's day of judgment is coming; it is a day of cruelty and savage, raging anger, destroying the earth and annihilating its sinners. [10] Indeed the stars in the sky and their constellations no longer give out their light; the sun is darkened as soon as it rises, and the moon does not shine. [11] I will punish the world for its evil, and wicked people for their sin … 33
  34. 34. Repetitive themes of judgment Joel 3:14-16 Crowds, great crowds are in the valley of decision, for the day of the LORD is near in the valley of decision! [15] The sun and moon are darkened; the stars withhold their brightness. [16] The LORD roars from Zion; from Jerusalem his voice bellows out. The heavens and the earth shake. But the LORD is a refuge for his people; he is a stronghold for the citizens of Israel. 34
  35. 35. Two questions to ask of Revelation What did it mean to the Christians of the First Century? What does it mean to Christians today? 35
  36. 36. KEYS TO UNDERSTANDING THE BOOK OF REVELATION 36
  37. 37. All literature is not read alike Elizabeth Barrett Browning Edgar Allan Poe William Shakespeare Stephen King 37
  38. 38. The Book of Revelation is an example of the apocalyptic genre 38
  39. 39. The Book of Revelation is an example of the apocalyptic genre 39
  40. 40. Read Revelation the way you watch animations – use your imagination! Dragon and Beast Lamb Woman on Beast 40
  41. 41. THE MEANINGS OF SOME SYMBOLS ARE SELF-EVIDENT 41
  42. 42. One like a son of man Who is this? This is clearly Jesus! 42
  43. 43. The Lion of Judah/Lamb of God Who is this? It has to be Jesus! 43
  44. 44. The two witnesses Who are they? Elijah Moses 44
  45. 45. The radiant woman and her child Who is the woman? Mary Who is the child? Jesus Who is the dragon? Wait and see! 45
  46. 46. The conquering king on a white horse Who is this? Jesus 46
  47. 47. THE TEXT EXPLAINS THE LESS OBVIOUS SYMBOLS 47
  48. 48. What are the stars and lampstands? Revelation 1:20 The mystery of the seven stars that you saw in my right hand and the seven golden lampstands is this: The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches and the seven lampstands are the seven churches. 48
  49. 49. Who is the dragon? Revelation 12:9 So that huge dragon - the ancient serpent, the one called the devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world- was thrown down to the earth, and his angels along with him. 49
  50. 50. Who is the woman riding the beast? Revelation 17:18 … the great city that has sovereignty over the kings of the earth.” Revelation 17:9-11 … The seven heads are seven mountains the woman sits on. .... The woman is the City of Rome 50
  51. 51. What is the sea beast? Revelation 13:1-8 … [7] The beast … was given ruling authority over every tribe, people, language, and nation … Rome rides atop the Roman Empire! The Roman Empire receives its power from Satan! 51
  52. 52. What is the earth beast? Resembles lamb; sounds like dragon! Forces worship of sea beast! AKA the false prophet Satan uses religion for his purposes Concilia - emperor cults 52
  53. 53. REVELATION IS A PUZZLE TO SOLVE, NOT A MYSTERY TO IGNORE 53
  54. 54. You start with what you know: Lamb is Jesus Dragon is Satan Beast is Roman Empire Heads are the emperors Earth beast is the concilia Prostitute is city of Rome Once you get those pieces in place, the picture starts to come together! 54
  55. 55. The Book of Revelation for Dummies God Rules! Jesus is Lord! We win! 55
  56. 56. OPPOSED PAIRS ARE A FEATURE OF THE BOOK 56
  57. 57. There are two lambs Lamb of God Lamb that sounds like the dragon 57
  58. 58. Two women oppose one another Prostitute who is judged Bride of the Lamb 58
  59. 59. There are two who claim dominion God on his throne Dragon who tries to usurp God’s throne 59
  60. 60. Two marks on people’s foreheads Some wear the seal of God The rest wear the mark of the beast 60
  61. 61. Kings of earth oppose the King of Kings 61
  62. 62. LOOKING AHEAD Our next lesson will focus on the symbolic use of numbers in the Book of Revelation. 62

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