Jesus' Revelation Words
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1. Jesus' Revelation Words
Revelation 1.1

"The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants what must soon take place. He made it known by sending his angel to his servant John." (Revelation 1.1)✞

The Revelation

Wooden Roof BossJohn of Patmos' Revelation prologue begins with the phrase "the Revelation" at the beginning of the scroll. The Bible's last book is sometimes called the "The Revelation of Jesus Christ" or the "Apocalypse." It is Jesus' Revelation words and not John's words as it might be in an ordinary book authored by an average person. Here Jesus is dictating, sometimes through his angel servants, what to write. The term "servant" in this verse is from the Greek "doulos," meaning "slave or servant." John is a Roman prisoner on Patmos Isle, but he is, more importantly, Jesus Christ's servant. Sometimes John and his scribe Prochorus are told not to write down something he sees but leave it hidden. Some of Revelation must remain concealed to us for the time being for reasons known only to God, who will reveal all when Jesus comes back.

The Name Revelation

Unveiling ScripturesThe opening phrase is "the revelation of Jesus Christ." Jesus' words are the first phrases of the Revelation scroll's first page, giving the "Book of Revelation" its name. In the same way, "Genesis" in the Old Testament is titled after its scroll's opening Hebrew word "Bereshit," meaning "in the beginning." The Greek equivalent to "Genesis" comes from the words "generations of heaven and earth" or "origin." The Book of Revelation is not "about Jesus Christ" but "of Jesus Christ" or, alternately, "from Jesus Christ." Jesus' own words come to John of Patmos from an angel at this time, but like all scripture applies equally to us today. ✞

Use of the Veil

Veil or BurkaThe Bible scholar Dr. William Barclay (1907-1978), in his "Daily Study Bible," explains that the Greek word for "Revelation" is "Apokalupsis." This word comprises two parts, "apo," meaning "away from," and "kalupsis," meaning "a veiling." "Revelation" therefore means "away from a veiling." Muslim women traditionally wear a head covering and the veil, called a "Burka" if it covers the eyes with a mesh screen, or "Niqab," meaning "full veil," if it doesn't cover the eyes. Veiling is common in other cultures, including Christian ones. interestingly, a "veil" also covers the burse and chalice laid over the holy vessels on the Holy Communion table. ✞


Habakkuk ApocalypseRevelation is "an unveiling" of God's truth given by Jesus Christ to John of Patmos through an angel. Jewish scholars included many books in their canon called "Apocalypses," which were visions unveiling the end times and the blessedness to come. God intends these Biblical Revelations to show God's servants what will soon take place. "The Book of Revelation" belongs to this literature class and has Old Testament parallels in Ezekiel, Habakkuk, and Daniel. Revelation is a development of these books in that it focuses upon Jesus' Revelation words. The word "Revelation" is not itself originally religious, for, in the Second Century AD, it meant "disclosing a fact," "uncovering secrets," or even "dream interpretation."

Holy Spirit's Work

Holy SpiritThe "Book of Revelation" has been closely connected with the Holy Spirit's work from the earliest times. The Holy Spirit shows us what will soon occur and conveys insight as we read this document, and illuminates no other Bible book in the same way. He brings us understanding and insight into Christian life today. Revelation is what God reveals to all who want to understand.

Jewish Diaspora

ScrollJewish people's hope in the "end times" for God's direct intervention in history, which they call the "eschaton." The word "eschatology" comes from a root meaning "last days' study." In Jewish belief, God will gather scattered Israeli peoples, the "diaspora," from around the world back to Israel for the Messiah's coming and a glorious afterlife. Jewish people also believe in the return of the "Tsadikim," who are thirty-six righteous persons in each generation who will welcome the Messiah's divine presence.

Jewish Calendar

Clock TowerTo the Jewish person, two ages divide all time. The first age begins with the Creation and ends with the Jerusalem Temple's destruction in 70 AD. In the Jewish calendar, "BC," meaning "before Christ," is referred to as "BCE" or "before the common era." The Gregorian calendar is widely used today except by some Jewish religious groups. "AD" or "anno domini" means in Medieval Latin "In the Year of the Lord." Jewish scholars transcribe this as "CE" or "the common era." In Jewish terms, 2021 AD coincides with 5781 CE and lasts until September 2nd, 2021, when 5782 CE in the Jewish calendar begins. The Jewish calendar counts in years from before the Biblical Creation to the 70 AD Jerusalem Temple's fall. The Jewish year 5782 CE is believed to be the number of years since Creation's first day to the present.

The 'Lost' Eleven Days

Time MachineIn 1752 AD, Britain and the British Empire lost 11 days in September when they changed from the Julian to the Gregorian calendar, bringing them into line with Europe. The name "Gregorian Calendar" came about when Pope Gregory XIII, in February 1582, introduced today's international calendar.

Inbuilt Error

Before 1752, Britain and her Empire followed the Julian calendar, first implemented by Julius Caesar in 46 BC. This calendar, however, had an inbuilt error of 1 day every 128 years due to an 11 minutes miscalculation of the solar year. This error affected the date of Easter, traditionally observed on March 21st, as it began to move further away with each passing year. Gregory based his calendar on 365 days divided into 12 months with 30 or 31 days per month, 28 in February, and a leap year every fourth year in February. Though France, Italy, Poland, Spain, and Portugal adopted it in 1582, Turkey did not come into line until 1927! This change created problems. 1751 was a short year of 282 days lasting from March 25th to December 31st! The new year then began on January 1st on the new system.

Willett's Wager

AbacusBritain lost the 11 days in that Thursday, September 14th, was followed by Wednesday, September 2nd! Civil unrest and rioters wanted their 11 days back! Many people mistakenly believed that it would shorten their lives by 11 days! Not everyone was unhappy about the new calendar. According to W.M. Jamieson in "Murders Myths and Monuments of North Staffordshire," William Willett of Endon, always keen on a joke, apparently wagered that he could dance non-stop for 12 days and 12 nights. On the evening of September 2nd, 1752, he started to jig around the village and continued all through the night. The following day, September 14th, he stopped dancing and claimed his winnings!

End Times

TombstoneJewish scholars anticipate that "God's age to come" will follow the present evil age. Between the two end times, there will be a trial. Many Christians understand from the Scriptures that this will last seven years before Christ's final victory. As you read of these end times, allow their vivid word pictures to flow over you. Try to open up yourself to the Holy Spirit to help you understand what must soon take place.

Describing The Indescribable

Alpha and Omega WindowMany apocalyptic books seem to be wild and incomprehensible, for they try to describe the indescribable. The very subject with which Revelation deals is why it is sometimes so hard to understand. Jesus' Revelation words begin with God, the fountain of all truth. Every discovered truth, whether scientific, medical or otherwise, is God's gift. People do not create truthfulness. They receive it from God. This reception comes from diligently seeking and reverently waiting for it.

Thoughts and Emotions

Garden FountainJesus' Revelation words describe what will occur in the near and distant future in the heavenly realm. God creates humans with thinking minds and caring hearts and speaks to us through our minds and emotions. He does not usually convey the truth to someone too lazy to think. God sends his truth to the one who waits in prayerful devotion for Jesus' revelation words. Devotional prayer and faith mean active, dedicated listening for God's voice in the Scriptures.

Jesus Teaching

Jesus in GloryGod gives us this "Revelation teaching" directly through Jesus Christ. The Bible stresses Jesus' utter dependence on his Heavenly Father. "My teaching," says Jesus in John 7.16, "is not my own. It comes from the one who sent me." Again in John 8.28b, Jesus says, "I do nothing on my own but speak just what the Father has taught me." John 12.49 elaborates on this mutual reliance between the Heavenly Father and his Son, "For I did not speak on my own, but the Father who sent me commanded me to say all that I have spoken." Truth brings Jesus' words to human beings, and that is why it is unique and final. ✞

"Jesus' Revelation Words"
by Ron Meacock © 2021

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