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 Revelation Chapter 1 (Part 6) (verses 9 - 11)

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PostSubject: Revelation Chapter 1 (Part 6) (verses 9 - 11)    Mon Oct 20, 2014 10:01 pm

Revelation Chapter 1 (Part 6) (verses 9 - 11)

Verse 9 reads: “I, John, your brother and companion in the suffering and kingdom and patient endurance that are ours in Jesus, was on the island of Patmos because of the word of God and the testimony of Jesus.” John has been exiled on the island of Patmos because of his faith in and testimony of Jesus. To be exiled is equivalent to being incarcerated. Even in bad situations, God has purposes for us, and he can meet us on our exiled islands and use us for his good and perfect purposes. Notice from this verse that suffering is part of God’s kingdom agenda on this Earth. John is claiming his suffering: “that are ours in Jesus.” We ought not complain when we undergo suffering. Nor should we pray that we do not experience any suffering. Jesus said that if you follow me, you will be persecuted. Jesus promised that his true followers will undergo suffering. In all actuality, we really should be praying that we undergo suffering because that is one proof that you are a true follower, or disciple of his. If all of your worldly friends agree with everything you do; or, if you are friends with everybody and you have no enemies, then that strongly suggests that you are not a true disciple. You might be saved for Heaven if you believe in His atonement for your sins through the cross and resurrection, but you are not a disciple. Jesus said, “If you obey me you are truly my disciples.” Discipleship comes through obedience to Jesus, and that assures that you will be persecuted and undergo suffering here on this Earth. To follow Jesus is to automatically incur persecutors; enemies. But the good news is that those who suffer for Jesus will be rewarded richly. On this island is where John received his vision that we have in the book of Revelation. “Suffering”, “the kingdom”, and “patient endurance” are 3 reoccurring themes throughout this book.

Verse 10-11 reads: “On the Lord’s Day I was in the Spirit, and I heard behind me a loud voice like a trumpet, [11] which said: ‘Write on a scroll what you see and send it to the seven churches; to Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea.” John is to send his single letter by a secret carrier to the seven churches mentioned. These are not the only churches that existed at this time as we discussed earlier. These churches form a semi-circle. When the first church reads the letter, they are to pass it along to the next, and so on. John is going to address each church individually, but because they are all passing it along to each other, each church is to learn the principles applied to the other churches. These churches were located in Asia Minor. They were about 50 miles apart from each other. The order of the churches will be important in a later study. For now, just note that the order here is the same order as listed in chapters 2 and 3. The order is no fluke.

The beginning of verse 10 literally reads in Greek: “On the Lord’s Day I became in the Spirit.” John became spiritualized by the Spirit. “The Lord’s Day” refers to the first day of the week: Sunday. I recently learned that 7th Day Adventists believe that those who do not worship on Saturday and hold to Saturday Sabbaths are not saved. The early church often worshiped on Sunday, the Lord’s Day, in the bible. Christians met on Sundays to worship according to Acts 20:7, which reads, “On the first day of the week we came together to break bread.” Sunday was the day Christians took up church offerings. 1 Corinthians 16:2 says, “On the first day of the every week, each one of you should set aside a sum of money in keeping with his income…” “The Lord’s Day” is an important clause here in Revelation. We will soon see that John himself represents the Church. And it is on the Lord’s Day, the day of the resurrection of Jesus, that John becomes spiritualized by the Holy Spirit. Because John represents the church (as we will later see), and he becomes spiritualized on the Lord’s Day, that implies that Jesus wants us to worship him on Sundays, commemorating the Resurrection.

Notice the senses in verses 10 and 12. Verse 10, John says, “I heard behind me.” And, Jesus tells John, “Write…what you see…” Verse 12, John says, “I turned around to see the voice that was speaking to me.” John is wide awake when he has this vision. Sometimes visions are given to prophets while they are asleep, such as Jacob’s ladder. But this one, John is wide awake and as if physically present in his vision (remember, he was in the Spirit). The acoustics echoed so that he could hear voices behind him in his vision. This is not new in the bible. Zechariah was awakened from his sleep by an angel to look at an awesome vision. Zechariah 4:1-2: “Then the angel who talked with me returned and wakened me, as a man is wakened from his sleep. He asked me, ‘What do you see?’” What he saw was a vision very similar to Revelation 1:20 (a golden lampstand with a bowl at the top and seven lights on it…). We might look at it when we get to verse 20, but it is really has a different application than Revelation 1:20. That Zechariah passage fits more with Revelation 11:4, so we will more likely defer looking at it until then.
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Revelation Chapter 1 (Part 6) (verses 9 - 11)
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