It is interesting to me to notice that the KJV, NRSV and NASB entitle this “book” as “The Revelation to John,” while the NIV entitles it merely “Revelation.” I would have have entitled it “The Revelation of Jesus Christ to Israel and the Gentile Nations.” “Why'” you say? Well, let us look at how it is written and “to whom” it is written:
The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him to show to His bond-servants, the things which must shortly take place; and He sent and communicated it by His angel to His bond-servant John, 2 who bore witness to the word of God and to the testimony of Jesus Christ, even to all that he saw.
If you have been reading any of my posts you know that God has a reason for what He says, why He says it and to whom He says it. He does not use words loosely or carelessly. What we see here is that God gave this revelation, apokalupsis, (noun, a disclosure of truth, instruction, concerning divine things before unknown) to Jesus Christ who sent and relayed it by His angel to His bond-servant John.
Rev 1:3 3
Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand.
The words of this prophecy are just that, prophetic, things that will come to pass in the future. Preterists believe that this prophecy came to pass in 70 A.D. Futurists like myself and Fred Price Jr. believe it is still future. Time is the word kairos and means a fixed and definite time: the time occupied by what is written, i.e., the Coming of the Day of the Lord; the days of the wrath of our God. At the culmination of which, we, the born again believers of this Age, will return with Christ for the Battle of Armagedon.
John to the seven assemblies that [are] in Asia:
Young’s Literal Translation properly translates ekklesias as assemblies, not churches. These 7 assemblies have nothing to do with the Church of God to which all born again believers belong, the Body of Christ.
Grace be unto you, and peace, from him which is, and which was, and which is to come;
Here we have an undoubted reference to, and paraphrase of, the name of Jehovah, as revealed in Ex. iii. 14. It is not from the Father to His children, as in the Church Epistles ; but it is from Jehovah as He was revealed and made known to Israel. This is in perfect keeping with what we hold to be the scope of the book. Three times we have this periphrasis of Jehovah, and yet it is varied according to the emphasis we are to place upon it. Bullinger, E.W. (2011-08-21). The Apocalypse or “The Day of The Lord”: Commentary on Revelation (Kindle Locations 2486-2490). Trumpet Press. Kindle Edition.
and from the seven spirits which are before his throne;
We see from Rev 8:2 that these seven spirits are angels and more than likely the angels of the 7 assemblies as well: “And I saw the seven angels which stood before God; and to them were given seven trumpets.” KJV Rev 1:20 The mystery of the seven stars which thou sawest in my right hand, and the seven golden candlesticks. The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches: and the seven candlesticks which thou sawest are the seven churches. KJV
And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood,
6 And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.
Grace and peace are given from the Old Testament reference to YHWH, the 7 angels who stand before Him and from Jesus Christ. As we go further in this spoken and written prophecy, we will see beyond a shadow of a doubt that the Church to which you and I belong will be long gone before the unfolding of the Great and Terrible Day of the LORD!
As you have seen from the previous four segments the end is not yet. It could be said and has been said by many that “we are definitely in the end times.” As I have said before, there will be things leading up to the apokalupto of the False Prophet, but what they will be no one knows for sure. And I don’t believe anyone can tell you with absolute certainty that we are in the end times. I have shown you what will happen after being Caught Up, harpazoo, of 1Thess. 4:17, but no one knows what will be going on prior to that.
There are no prophecies concerning this Age because none of the prophets before Paul knew anything about this age. This age was kept a secret by God:
Rom 16:25-27 Now to Him who is able to establish you according to my gospel (Paul’s) and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the secret which has been kept silent since the world began but now is manifested, and by the Scriptures of the (Christian) prophets, according to the commandment of the eternal God, has been made known to all the nations, leading to obedience of faith;
Eph 3:5 Which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men, as it is now revealed unto his holy (Christian) apostles and prophets by spirit; (How many Old Testament apostles can you name?)
Since none of them, no one, had any knowledge of this Secret Age, they could not have prophesied anything about it, particularly what to expect before the Gathering Together of the saints! In other words no one has any idea when this will occur. There are no worldly events which will indicate when it will happen.
Now, if I am wrong about the Rapture and there is none as many believe, at least you know what to look for concerning the False Prophet.
So, when will “the end” come? Let’s see what 1 Cor 15:20-26 says:
But now Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who are asleep (dead). 21 For since by a man came death, by a man also came the standing up from the dead. 22 For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive. 23 But each in his own order: Christ the first fruits, after that those who are Christ’s at His coming, (Remember the 5 parts of the Parousia, coming, in Part IV?) This is addressing the dead, those who are asleep.
24 then comes the end, when He, Jesus, hands over the kingdom to the God and Father, when He has abolished all rule and all authority and power. 25 For He must reign until He has put all His enemies under His feet. 26 The last enemy that will be abolished is death (death is not destroyed until Rev. 20:14, after the Millennial Kingdom.) NASU
When all of the “whens” have occurred, then comes the end!