Revelation Lectures(3)

Revelation Lectures

Revelation 1:4-8

[4] John to the seven churches that are in Asia: Grace to you and peace, from Him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven Spirits who are before His throne,
[5] and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. To Him who loves us and released us from our sins by His blood
[6] and He has made us to be a kingdom, priests to His God and Father to Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.
[7] Behold, He is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see Him, even those who pierced Him; and all the tribes of the earth will mourn over Him. So it is to be. Amen.
[8] “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.”

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ.

You will find ‘throne’ in tonight’s scripture. But you should not take it as a mere ‘chair.’

The throne on which God sits on is truly spectacular.

1 Kings 22:19 says, “Micaiah said, “Therefore, hear the word of the Lord. I saw the Lord sitting on His throne, and all the host of heaven standing by Him on His right and on His left.””

Along with archangels, countless heavenly hosts, angels, cherubim, and others are standing by on God’s right and left.

Also, as you can find in Revelation Ch. 4, around the throne are 24 elders’ thrones, and before the throne is something like a sea of glass, like crystal.

And in the center and around the throne are four living creatures showing a majestic appearance.

But even more spectacular things than all these already mentioned are the grand lights from the throne, and the rainbows that surround the throne.

Inexpressibly clear and bright lights of different colors emanate from the throne, and the brilliance of the lights emitted from the rainbows encircle the throne.

Apostle John saw this throne of God in his vision.

And he saw the seven Spirits, which I briefly explained in the last lecture.

I told you that the seven Spirits are the Spirits that were separated out from God. They are the heart of God, and they observe all things with the very heart of God.

Each Spirit represents one of the many aspects of God’s heart, and they search and measure individual’s believing life from the view point of these 7 aspects, and decide the matter of answers and blessings.

They are like a scale to measure for an answer. These seven Spirits measure an individual’s faith, and when it’s proper to the standard that God has set, the answer is given to the individual.

The categories that the seven Spirits measure are faith, joy, prayer, thankfulness, obedience to the commandments, faithfulness, and love. All these will be explained in detail when we come to Revelation Ch. 5.

Now, the verses 5 and 6 say, “and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. To Him who loves us and released us from our sins by His blood and He has made us to be a kingdom, priests to His God and Father to Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.”

Here, ‘the faithful witness, the first born of the dead’ refers to the Lord, Jesus Christ.

Jesus is the Lord who faithfully obeyed and managed His God-given duty to the extent that He was crucified on the cross in following the will of God.

He is the true example of ‘faithfulness.’

I hope that you will take this moment to check whether you are a faithful witness to God, and how well you dedicate yourself to God.

You must look back on yourself how preciously you have considered your God-given duty, how well you have managed in your position, and how faithfully you have done your duty.

If you truly love Father God, you must follow the example of the Lord who was faithful even in sacrificing His life.

When Jesus obeyed God by sacrificing His life in order to be faithful in the sight of God, God brought Jesus back to life from the dead.

The Lord became the First Fruit of the Resurrection.

How do you think God treated the Lord, who was obedient to the point of death, and resurrected again?

Philippians 2:9-11 says, “For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”

Tonight’s scripture also says that the Lord became ‘the ruler of the kings of the earth.’

A king represents a country and the head of its people.

Therefore, ‘the ruler of the kings of the earth’ means that He came the king of kings and the Lord of lords.

Even though He was the King of kings and the Lord of lords, however, He didn’t try to be served, nor did He boast of Himself.

To be called a true king, instead of trying to be served or flaunting his authority, the king will try hard for the betterment of his people

He will desire to bring peace and happiness to its people even by sacrificing himself.

This is the true king.

Jesus came to the earth, sacrificed all He had only for us, and brought us grace and peace.

He said in Matthew 11:29-30, “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”

Since you have hatred in your heart, you feel distressed. Because of your arrogance, you feel agonized. And since you have burden of sin, you can’t have peace or be at ease in your heart.

Then, Jesus took our heavy burden of sin for us, and He was crucified on the cross. Because of this, we came to have a way to true peace.

Since all the people who accepted the Lord as their savior came to know the true love of God, they must get rid of ‘SELF’ and cast away dirty and ugly sins one by one, and put them down before the Lord.

A true way for us to be saved from sin came to be possible by Jesus’ shedding His blood and dying on the cross.

Now, tonight’s scripture says, “He has made us to be a kingdom, priests to His God and Father.”

‘He has made us to be a kingdom’ means that God’s kingdom is established inside the heart of the people who received the Holy Spirit and became children of God.

When you and I accept Jesus Christ as our savior, we are forgiven of our sins, and we receive the Holy Spirit as a gift.

Then, our body becomes a Holy Temple where the Holy Spirit of God resides.

And our heart that holds the Holy Spirit becomes the kingdom of God.

Luke 17:20-21 says, “Now having been questioned by the Pharisees as to when the kingdom of God was coming, He answered them and said, “The kingdom of God is not coming with signs to be observed; nor will they say, ‘Look, here it is!or, ‘There it is!For behold, the kingdom of God is in your midst.””

Also, the church where the holy bodies that have God’s kingdom in their heart come into also becomes the kingdom of God.

Next, it says, ‘He has made us priests.’ You may wonder whether it applies only to the servants of God these days because of the word ‘priests.’ But all of you can become ‘priests.’

1 Peter 2:9 says, “But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s own possession, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.”

In other words, you, as a child of God, can become a chosen race, a royal priesthood, and a holy nation where the Holy Spirit exists. You can become a people of God’s own possession.

Then, how can you all become a priest?

Until Jesus died on the cross, only the priests could enter into the temple.

Ordinary people couldn’t go into the sanctuary, but worshiped in the yard outside the temple.

But when Jesus died on the cross, the veil of the temple was torn into two.

Mark 15:38 says, “And the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom.”

From then on, ordinary people have been able to go inside the temple, that is the sanctuary of today’s church, and offer their worship.

Because of the Holy Spirit, that resides inside the heart, we all became priests who can communicate with God directly.

Therefore, not only the servants of God, but also all the other people who received the Holy Spirit can become priests.

But there is a different meaning when it says, “He has made us to be a kingdom, priests to His God and Father.”

It means that the children of God will be used for the kingdom of God according to their own vessel.

The body of Christ, where God’s kingdom is established, is within the people of the church and they are used for the kingdom individually.

There are people who are used as priests, but there are other people who are given various duties and positions, and used properly for the kingdom of God.

Since Apostle John realized this fact, he confessed that he wanted the glory and the dominion forever and ever to the Lord who saved sinners, made them holy nations and priests, and blessed them to be used for the kingdom of God.

Of course, the glory and dominion are not of the Lord just because the Apostle John wanted it to be so; it is natural that people are of the Lord. But by confessing like this, he expressed how desperately he wanted it so, and how well he was pleased with it.

The verse 7 says, “Behold, He is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see Him, even those who pierced Him; and all the tribes of the earth will mourn over Him. So it is to be. Amen.”

When the Lord comes back to take us, He will come with the clouds. The clouds are not ordinary clouds.

These are the clouds of glory which are beautiful and shining.

After the Lord was resurrected, when He was ascending into heaven, Acts 1:9 says, “And after He had said these things, He was lifted up while they were looking on, and a cloud received Him out of their sight.” Then in the verse 11, two angels said to the people who were gazing intently into the sky, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into the sky? This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come in just the same way as you have watched Him go into heaven.”

The Lord who was ascended into a cloud like this will come with those clouds. That’s why tonight’s scripture says, “He is coming with the clouds.”

As written in 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17, the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet of God.

Then the dead in Christ will rise first, and the people who are alive and accept the Lord as savior, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air.

Likewise, the Lord’s ascending into the sky and the descending in the air are very closely related with the clouds. The fact is that the clouds play a role like a tunnel which connects the fleshly world to the spiritual realm.

Also in the Old Testament times, when God descended, the clouds surely appeared together with Him.

When the Lord comes back in the air, He will come on the clouds. And tonight’s scripture says, “Every eye will see Him.”

It means whether people are believers or non- believers, they will all see the Lord coming on the clouds.

I don’t mean that all the people will see the Lord’s coming directly with their physical eyes. I mean that all will know of the Second Advent and that the Lord has come back.

Is there any one who will say, “The bible says ‘the day of the Lord will come like a thief.’ How can all the people come to know about it?”

Of course, the bible says the day of the Lord will come like a thief.

2 Peter 3:10 also says, “But the day of the Lord will come like a thief.”

But it only applies to those who are not ready to meet the Lord.

To those who don’t take oil with the lamp, in other words, who don’t adorn themselves for the Lord, the Lord will come at an unexpected time just like a thief.

Revelation 3:3 says, “So remember what you have received and heard; and keep it, and repent. Therefore if you do not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come to you.” It says that the Lord will come like a thief, if you don’t repent nor wake up.

On the contrary, 1 Thessalonians 5:4-6 says, “But you, brethren, are not in darkness, that the day would overtake you like a thief; for you are all sons of light and sons of day. We are not of night nor of darkness; so then let us not sleep as others do, but let us be alert and sober.” It says that the day will not overtake you like a thief, if you wake up, and adorn yourself to meet the Lord.

When Jesus came to the earth, He was poor because he came to take our sins. But when He comes back in the air, He will be majestic with all the authority since He comes to take God’s children who are saved as the King of kings and the Lord of lords.

The scripture says, “Even those who pierced Him (will see Him); and all the tribes of the earth will mourn over Him.” Here, ‘those who pierced Him’ not only refer to those who actually persecuted and nailed Him on the cross.

They also refer to those who persecute Jesus Christ nowadays, such as those who persecute the churches and Christians, and who disgrace God, who stand against God, and who don’t believe in God.

“All the tribes of the earth” refer to not only those who don’t believe and stand against God, but also those who don’t live by the word, and those who are like the chaff. They are the ones who will mourn because of Him.

Those who haven’t believed in the Lord will mourn saying, “Why didn’t I accept the Lord when I was evangelized?” and “Why did I persecute those Christians?” Those who haven’t lived by the word of God even though they profess they believe in God may mourn saying, “Why did I commit the sins that unbelievers commit.”

And the morning will not stop there. It will continue during the seven year Tribulation, and in the fire of Hell after the judgment of White Throne.

There must be none of you who are such foolish people.

The verse 8 says, “”I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.””

When many people hear that the Lord God says ‘I am the Alpha and Omega,’ they think God is the beginning and the ending.

They think Revelation 21:6 “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end,” and 22:13 “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end,” are all alike.

But if they really have the same meaning, why did God cause them to be repeated in the bible?

“Alpha and Omega,” “the first and the last,” and “the beginning and the end” have all different meanings.

From the very beginning, God has no first and no last.

God doesn’t have the first and the last that the fleshly may think of.

He was before the beginning, and He will be after the eternity.

When such God says, “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end,” there must be a spiritual meaning contained in it.

Tonight, I will explain the meaning of ‘Alpha and Omega.’

Alpha and omega are the first and the last alphabet in Greek language.

They are like A and Z in English.

These letters are directly related with the development of civilization.

In order to develop and hand down civilization, people must have ‘letters’ as a tool.

Most of the civilizations in human history made great developments due to the invention of letters.

Therefore, all the letters, including Alpha and Omega, have a symbolic meaning representing all the civilization of the earth.

And the first and last letters of the alphabet mean the beginning and the last of the all the civilization.

When God calls Himself ‘Alpha and Omega,’ it doesn’t mean there are the beginning and the last to God. It means the beginning and the last of the civilization that a mankind have developed are also due to God.

It means that the sum of all the knowledge of human beings are from God who is the origin of all the knowledge, and it is all under the supervision of God.

But when people make use of the knowledge that is from God, people are moved by Satan and use it in ways it was never intended.

There is no untruth in the knowledge that is from God. The knowledge was given to people to be used properly in goodness. But they are induced by Satan, and eventually it goes in the wrong direction.

In the verse 8, God calls Himself ‘who is, who was, and who is to come, the Almighty.’ God was from the very beginning, and He is still alive and works today.

‘Who is to come’ actually refers to the Lord, but since God the Trinity is originally one, it is written so.

Just as it says, ‘they are Almighty,’ God the Trinity are creators. They are all Almighty.

In the next lecture, we will look into the background of Apostle John’s writing to the seven churches, and the situation when he received revelation in his vision.

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ.

When the Lord comes back in the air, there will surely be a spectacular scene.

Those who have prepared themselves for the moment will be changed into the spiritual body, and be lift up into the air.

And they will enjoy with the Lord during the 7-year long wedding banquet in a place which is prepared for God’s children who are saved.

But this applies only to those who have prepared the holy garment to meet the Lord.

The holy garment means ‘the clean heart,’ and blessed are those who wash their robes in order to put on the holy garment.

To do so, you must circumcise your heart and cast away evil in your heart.

Just as I mentioned in the first lecture on Revelation, the reason God allowed this lecture on Revelation is that God wants whoever listens to this lecture to circumcise their hearts and to adorn themselves for the Lord.

Even though you all listen to the same message, depending on how deeply you put the Word in your heart and cultivate it in spirit, you will be very different in welcoming the Lord.

Therefore, I urge you to make a determination and make it a time full of grace whenever you listen to this lecture on Revelation.

Therefore, may you be in the arms of the Lord in the day you meet with the Lord without any regret, in the name of the Lord, Jesus Christ, I pray!

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