The Revelation of Jesus Christ: Rev 1:11

Jeff "Miztah" Rogers By Jeff "Miztah" Rogers, 29th Nov 2011 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Family>Religion

What thou seest, write in a book, and send it unto the seven churches which are in Asia

"Write what you see...Write in a book"

"The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to shew unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass; and he sent and signified it by his angel unto his servant John: Who bare record of the word of God, and of the testimony of Jesus Christ, and of all things that he saw." Revelation 1:1-2

"I was in the Spirit on the Lord's day, and heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet, Saying, I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last: and, What thou seest, write in a book, and send it unto the seven churches which are in Asia; unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira, and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea." Revelation 1:10-11

"And he said unto me, these sayings are faithful and true: and the Lord God of the holy prophets sent his angel to shew unto his servants the things which must shortly be done. Behold, I come quickly: blessed is he that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy of this book. And I John saw these things, and heard them. And when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which shewed me these things." Revelation 22:6-8

As we come to this passage in verse 11 we begin to hear from Jesus directly to John about the mission that he has chosen for him. We have in verse 12-16 a description of Jesus in His glory that rendered John on the ground at Jesus feet as a dead man. We will see that this sense of amazing awe is repeated throughout the book. I hope we can capture that sense and that it leads us to worship as we are confronted with the glory of Christ in these texts.

But here in verse 11 we have a great commission given to John. We first see in verse ten that John heard from behind him a voice like a trumpet saying,

"I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last: and, What thou seest, write in a book, and send it unto the seven churches which are in Asia; unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira, and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea." Revelation 1:11

In this verse we have a repetition of the identity statement of Jesus Christ. Jesus again uses the eternal all-encompassing statement of the Alpha and Omega to identify himself. In this iteration he changes the earlier version in verse 8 from "the beginning and the ending" to the first and the last. This is just as if he were saying that he is the "I AM". This concept of eternality is a character trait reserved entirely for God. So for Jesus to be identifying himself this way is a tremendous paradigm shift for the first century Jewish mind. Lest some be tempted to attribute these statements to Jehovah, God the Father and not to Jesus, look a little further up the text to verse 17-18 where Jesus again uses this language and makes it abundantly clear that he is speaking of himself a s God.

And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last: I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death Revelation 1:17-18

Here we have Jesus again claiming to be the "First and the Last", but then he takes this a step further and proclaims to John that he is the one who "LIVES and WAS DEAD". When was God the Father ever dead? This is unmistakably the words of Christ and he is irrefutably claiming to be God. I know that I covered this in an earlier study, but amazingly, one of the most frequent objections I have received from this entire study is the fact that I have been adamant about the deity of Christ. But if we get this wrong, everything else is of dubious benefit. We must be correct about the person of Jesus Christ. I am very sorry for those who may not see the person of Christ as divine as I do, but, I see this text as inescapable. If this is Jesus speaking (and it is), then he claims to be alive after having been dead, and he is claiming in the same breath to be the great eternal "I AM" then we really must bow our wills to the understanding of the divinely inspired words of the apostle and confess that Jesus is the Christ, the son of the living God, and that he is in fact God come in the flesh, and as revealed here, he is eternal God.

Not only was he dead and now lives, but he goes on to say that he lives for evermore. His life is an eternal life, (vs. 18). Speaking of Christ's eternality in reference to His priesthood, the writer of Hebrews says it this way.

"Who is made, not after the law of a carnal commandment, but after the power of an endless life." "By so much was Jesus made a surety of a better testament. And they truly were many priests, because they were not suffered to continue by reason of death: But this man, because he continueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood." Hebrews 7:16 & 22-24

In comparing Jesus eternal priesthood to the flawed Aaronic priesthood which was established under the carnal law, he says that the major difference is that Aaron died. They were prevented from serving any longer by death. But Jesus because he exercises his priesthood under the power of an endless life is a priest forever, and His priesthood is unchangeable.

So, having established to John His credentials, His authority, Jesus goes on to give John instructions in the mechanics in regards to what he is about to see and hear. Jesus gives the command to "Write", not just to "Write", but to, "Write what you see". Here we have one of the little secret insights to the entire book of Revelation. John is told to write what he sees, and as we survey the book we notice that John uses the phrase "I Saw" 33 times. While he is told to write what he sees, I get the impression that he also paid close attention to what he heard as well. For throughout the book he states "I Heard" 22 times. In addition he tells us that he "Looked" 5 times, the angel "shewed" or showed John something 8 times, and throughout the book he is commanded or reminded 29 times to "Write". If we take note of these communicative words I think we will begin to see much of the theme of the book unfolding in these seeing, hearing, looking and writing events.

I say that this is a key to the book itself and I hope you will notice the emphasis placed on these words as we go forward. But right now, take note that this exhortation is given at the beginning (1:11) of the revelation and again at the end of the book.

"And he said unto me, these sayings are faithful and true: and the Lord God of the holy prophets sent his angel to shew unto his servants the things which must shortly be done. Behold, I come quickly: blessed is he that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy of this book. And I John saw these things, and heard them. And when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which shewed me these things." Revelation 22:6-8

In the very first verse of the book itself we have God through Jesus Christ declaring the purpose and the tactic of the revelation.

"…to shew unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass… and he sent and signified it by his angel unto his servant John: Who bare record… and of all things that he saw."

We must be prepared to take note when John says, "I saw", or "I heard", or when the Angel says, "Come See".

In the Greek the emphasis is even more strongly made. In Greek writing, normally the point that is being emphasized and highlighted is at the very beginning of a sentence. Here in verse 11 Jesus actually is saying…"What you see, write in a book". Here we see that the emphasis is given to john upon what he sees. Once he absorbs what he sees, then he can write. But the seeing is emphasized above the writing.

After john has seen, heard, and has written, he is then told to "send"

"…What thou seest, write in a book, and send it unto the seven churches which are in Asia; unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira, and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea."

John is told to send the writing of what he has seen to the seven churches in Asia. These are the churches to whom John addressed his portion of the letter in verse 4. And it is to these churches that Jesus will communicate blessings warnings and promises in chapters 2-3. We will spend a great deal of time looking at each church individually and at the group as a whole when we get to that section. I am looking forward to that section of our study.

Now that John has his commission, he knows to be paying attention to what he sees, writing it down in a book and then sending it to the designated recipients, he begins verse 12 with his first visual encounter of the book.

"Then I turned to see…" And when we come back to this passage, we will see for ourselves exactly what it is that John saw when he turned. But I would like to encourage you to read ahead and get a glimpse of the glory that John saw. Remember that this book is "The Revelation of Jesus Christ". And all that John sees, he writes, and what John writes, we have the privilege of seeing with our spiritual eyes, the glory of the revealed Christ. As we will see…the things that John saw drove him to a place of worship. I pray that as we see what John saw and wrote that we too will be likewise driven to worship this glorious one who has been revealed, Jesus Christ.

Tags

Hear, Listen, Live, Look, See, Speak, Write

Meet the author

author avatar Jeff "Miztah" Rogers
Lived in many places in the U.S.. Served in the Air Force for 21 years. retired from active duty in 2002. Traveled extensively, lived 8 years in Europe. I write about the bible, faith, and new ideas

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author avatar Ivyevelyn, R.S.A.
7th Dec 2011 (#)

Thank you, Miztah. I appreciate this information so much. Please keep me on your list. Ivyevelyn.

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