The Revelation of Jesus christ: Rev 1:7

Jeff "Miztah" Rogers By Jeff "Miztah" Rogers, 22nd Nov 2011 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Family>Religion

This is not "Behold he will eventually come," or "behold he might someday come." In the mind of the first century reader they would have read these words and the reader would perhaps have paused and he and his audience might be seen looking up at the sky. It has this kind of an urgency and imminence to it.

Every Eye Shall See Him

"Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen!" Revelation 1:7

We have seen in the previous study that the Lord "Coming with or in the Clouds" was a type of apocalyptic language used frequently in the Old Testament to describe the coming of God in judgment. Then we saw that this proclamation of Jesus coming in the clouds used many times in the New Testament was merely Jesus claiming that what his Father had done, now He will do.

In the words "Behold He cometh" it is in the present indicative, which means that the writer is communicating directly to his audience that the event in question is in progress. This is not "Behold he will eventually come," or "behold he might someday come." In the mind of the first century reader they would have read these words and the reader would perhaps have paused and he and his audience might be seen looking up at the sky. It has this kind of an urgency and imminence to it. The New American Standard translation renders it properly; "Behold He IS COMING".

"Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise." For the Father loveth the Son, and sheweth him all things that himself doeth: and he will shew him greater works than these, that ye may marvel. For as the Father raiseth up the dead, and quickeneth them; even so the Son quickeneth whom he will. For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son: That all men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father. He that honoureth not the Son honoureth not the Father which hath sent him. For as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself;" John 5: 19-23 & 26

Here in this passage we see that whatsoever things that the Father had done in the past (as revealed in the Old Testament) he has now passed on the authority in all of these areas to the Son in the New Covenant. One of those in this passage is the right and the authority to judge. "God has committed all judgment unto the Son." This commitment for the Son to carry out judgment is exactly what these "Coming in the clouds", passages are all about. Jesus coming was a judgment coming. His judgment was upon the nation of Israel for their rejection of their messiah.

In the next clause of the verse we have John quoting from the Old Testament prophet Zechariah. I remind the readers at this point that there are a plethora of Old Testament passages that are quoted and/or alluded to throughout the book of Revelation. These uses of the Old Testament law and prophets are essential to our understanding. And please note: that when the inspired apostles quote from an Old Testament source, their inspired interpretation of the text must stand as final and authoritative.

"And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn. In that day shall there be a great mourning in Jerusalem (The Land), as the mourning of Hadadrimmon in the valley of Megiddon (The Land). And the land shall mourn, every family(TRIBE) apart; the family of the house of David apart, and their wives apart; the family of the house of Nathan apart, and their wives apart; The family of the house of Levi apart, and their wives apart; the family of Shimei apart, and their wives apart; All the families (TRIBES) that remain, every family apart, and their wives apart. (Note: the various tribes from various parts of the land). Zechariah 12:10-14

At this time I would like to compare the Zechariah passage with the Revelation passage and two passages from Matthew dealing with the same theme. (See chart below).

"And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory." Matthew 24:20

"But Jesus held his peace. And the high priest answered and said unto him, I adjure thee by the living God, that thou tell us whether thou be the Christ, the Son of God. Jesus saith unto him, Thou hast said: nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven. "Matthew 26:63-64

Zechariah 12:10-14
1. (No Mention of Clouds)
2. Pierced (vs. 10)
3. "Tribes" (vss. 12-14)
4. Tribes of the (earth) "Land" (vs. 12)(vs. 10 Jerusalem)
5. "Look on me" (vs. 10)
6. "They shall mourn for Him" (vs. 10)
7. (No specific mention of power and glory)

Revelation 1:7
1. "Coming with the clouds"
2. Pierced
3. Tribes
4. Tribes of the (Earth) "Land" (Greek word Ges)
5. "Every eye shall see him"
6. "Shall wail because of Him"
7. (No specific mention of power and glory)

Matthew 24:20
1. Coming in the clouds
2. (No mention of Piercing)
3. Tribes
4. Tribes of the Earth (Land)
5. They shall see the son of man
6. Mourn
7. "Power and great glory"

Matthew 26:63-64
1. At the right hand of power and coming in the clouds
2. Getting ready to crucify and pierce Him
3. Addressing the High Priest as representative of the tribes
4. of Israel in the Land
5. Hereafter shall ye see the Son
6. (No specific mention of Mourning, but Jesus is promising judgment)
7. "Sitting at the right hand of power"

As we see the striking similarities between this Old Testament prophet and the New Testament quotes and usages we see that they are speaking of the same event. We should also note that the Greek term "Ges" can mean "earth" "land", or even just "dirt". It is clear that form the context of the source in the Old Testament that Zechariah is speaking of those mourning who are living in the "Land" of Israel. He is not speaking of all who dwell on the planet. Also of interest is that the concept of "Tribe" being communicated here is clearly both from the context and the Greek a reference to the tribes of Israel.

5442 (Strongs) phylḗ (from 5453 /phýō, "to generate") - a tribe (race, lineage); the descendants of a common ancestor, like the progeny springing from Jacob (Israel).

Young's literal translation gives us this very clearly in the direct translation of "Tribe" and "Land" from the Greek text of Revelation.

"Lo, he doth come with the clouds, and see him shall every eye, even those who did pierce him, and wail because of him shall all the tribes of the land. Yes! Amen!" Revelation 1:7 (YLT)

The last text I want to look at is the text from John 19. Here we can see that John is clearly declaring that the Zechariah 12 passage was fulfilled at the cross. If it is fulfilled at the cross would John be predicting another fulfillment? I do not think so. John is not saying that a second fulfillment would occur in our future. He is in fact referencing his readers back to his previous writing in his Gospel of an already fulfilled at hand, soon to be, and near prophetic realization of what was completed at the cross.

"The Jews therefore, because it was the preparation, that the bodies should not remain upon the cross on the Sabbath Day, (for that Sabbath Day was an high day,) besought Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away. Then came the soldiers, and brake the legs of the first, and of the other which was crucified with him. But when they came to Jesus, and saw that he was dead already, they brake not his legs: But one of the soldiers with a spear pierced his side, and forthwith came there out blood and water. And he that saw it bare record, and his record is true: and he knoweth that he saith true, that ye might believe. For these things were done, that the scripture should be fulfilled, A bone of him shall not be broken. And again another scripture saith, They shall look on him whom they pierced." John 19:31-37

Another clue as to the timing of these events, outside of the clear declarative text of Revelation, is the time statement that Zechariah gives in his prophecy. The first three words of Zechariah 12:11 are; "IN THAT DAY". This is a crucial statement on our understanding of where we must place these prophetic events. If you look back at the passage in Zechariah 12 we see that it was: "In the day there would be a great mourning in Jerusalem". Clearly Jesus in his use of this passage in Matthew 24 and 26 he is placing this at the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD.

Zechariah also says at the beginning of 12:10 that God would: "will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications". Again this is restoration language and it was in the first century that God was gathering the remnant of Israel with grace and supplications. He then adds that it would also be in "That Day" where "…they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him…" There is no mistake, this occurred without doubt at the cross. Remember we MUST take the apostles word on how to interpret any Old Testament passage. John in John chapter 19 is very clear that the piercing of Jesus at the cross was THE fulfillment of the Zechariah prophecy. Go back up and read that passage from John 19 again.

So putting this all together let's again look at Revelation 1:7 a little closer.

"Behold, he cometh with clouds (Clouds indicate that he is coming in judgment); and every eye shall see him (the idea is that the effect of his judgment will not go unnoticed…see again Matt 26:63-64), and they also which pierced him: (Speaking of the past fulfilled event of the cross) and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. (The kindreds of the earth are a reference to the tribes of Israel) Even so, Amen!" Revelation 1:7

So in fact, John is opening his letter declaring that Jesus is ready to judge the rejecting tribes of Israel. Any mourning from this point forward would be mourning because of the suffering that they have brought upon themselves due to their rejection of Christ as their messiah.

Even So, Amen!

These two links are to articles that I have written about this topic in greater detail. One of them is a short survey of the entire prophecy of Zechariah showing that all of it applied to a first century fulfillment and not to any prophecy in our future today. The second article goes into greater detail about the complete first century fulfillment of the prophecy of the piercing of Christ from Zechariah 12.





Tags

Every Eye, Jerusalem, Jesus, Rapture, Revelation, Second Coming

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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Comments

author avatar Ivyevelyn, R.S.A.
22nd Nov 2011 (#)

Thank you, Miztah. You are explaining so much to me and I am learning.

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author avatar Jack Wellman
27th Nov 2011 (#)

Your grasp on Revelation is second to none my friend. Few can hold a candle to your study of His Word in fact.

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