The Revelation of Jesus Christ paints a dramatic portrait of our Judge, Warrior and King as we will know Him throughout eternity. In contrast to the helpless Babe in the manger (Luke 2:7,12,16), the humble Servant (John 13:5), and the meek, sacrificial Lamb (John 1:29, 36) portrayed in the Gospels, Christ shows Himself in Revelation in triplets of Divine power.
This unveiling of Christ to the apostle John was given by God, sent by His angel, and signified by His angel (Revelation 1:1; 17:1). As John was caught up in the Spirit in a prophetic vision (Revelation 1:10), he faithfully recorded God’s Word, the testimony of Christ Himself, which is the Spirit of prophecy (Revelation 19:10) and everything that he saw (Revelation 1:2). Jesus told John to record His Words regarding the past history of the seven churches, His present observations for these churches, and His prophecies of future events (Revelation 1:19).
John makes it clear that his vision came from Christ Himself, Who is, and was, and is to come, reflecting His present Priesthood, His eternal past, and His eternal future (Revelation 1:4,8). Jesus describes His own everlasting nature as Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, the first and the last (Revelation 1:8,11,17).
John refers to Christ by three of His titles: the faithful witness, the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. In other words, Christ is the Prophet, Priest and King. John praises Him for three of His noble deeds: He loved us; He washed us from our sins in his own blood; and He made us kings and priests in His Name (Revelation 1:5-6). His triumphal return will be a monumental event seen by all, realized by those who crucified Him, and causing great dismay to all remaining on earth (Revelation 1:7)
John hears the powerful words of Christ as a great voice, as of a trumpet (Revelation 1:10), and as the sound of many waters (Revelation 1:15). Christ wields three symbols of power and holiness: seven golden candlesticks (Revelation 1:12-13) surrounding Him, representing the seven churches (Revelation 1:16,20); seven stars in His right hand, representing the seven angels of the seven churches (Revelation 1:16,20); and a sharp two-edged sword, representing His Word, proceeding out of His mouth (Revelation 1:16).
Jesus Christ radiates brilliant light, for He is light (1 John 1:5): His eyes like a flame of fire; His feet like fine brass, as if burned in a furnace; and His face shining like the sun (Revelation 1:14-16). He makes three pronouncements about His power over life and death: in His incarnation He rose from the dead; He lives forever in His resurrected, glorified body; and He has the keys of hell and of death (Revelation 1:18).
Christ is adorned in attire suitable for a Priest, Judge, and Ruler. His full-length robe reflects His holiness, authority and majesty, and His golden girdle circling His chest is like the priest’s ephod, breastplate of a mighty warrior, or royal banner. His snow-white hair, like wool, resembles the wigs worn by magistrates to reflect their wisdom, age, and authority (Revelation 1:13-14).
Unlike any other book in the Bible, Revelation carries a special blessing for those who read it, those who hear it, and those who keep it; meaning for those who carry the promises of this book in their heart, mind and soul to influence their thoughts, words, and behavior (Revelation 1:3). Knowing that Christ will soon come again in judgment, power, and glory, should we not live every moment following His Word, seeking His will, and doing His work?
© 2013 Laurie Collett