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Saturday, February 22, 2014

Do the Commands in the Book of Revelation Matter to Me?

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Many, many people, Christians and non-
Christians alike, say they find the Book of the
Revelation “uncomfortable.” They find much of the imagery disturbing and are put off by the concept of God’s judgment on the world. Yet, millions of people when asked to identify their favorite book to movie project, answer, “The Lord of the Rings.” Interestingly, many of the images in that film are also quite frightening, but that does not seem to put people off. Indeed much of the message of both
Revelation and Tolkien’s books are the same:
an on-going war between the forces of good and evil. In both cases, too, evil is ultimately defeated, destroyed while the forces of good prevail.

The difference of course is that The Lord of the Rings is fiction and will never come true, while the disturbing thought for some about Revelation is that it just might.

You might ask, “Why study Revelation?” Within the words of this last book of the Bible, there is a promise of blessing to those that listen, read, and study it. “Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of this prophecy, and blessed are those who hear it and take to heart what is written in it, because the time is near.” (Revelation 1:3)
The trend among churches for quite some time has been to ignore the more challenging or controversial parts of the Scripture, and Revelation is often neglected as a result. We are so easily intimidated with this book. We’re frightened by all the symbols, imagery, warfare, not to mention a sevenheaded dragon that tries to eat a baby.

(What is that all about?) No question about it, the Book of Revelation can be a complex book. And yet it is an amazing book, a book of mystery, wonder, excitement, drama, and horror. There are several reasons to look at Revelation. One is because it gives us a stepby-step account of all the events that have happened, that are happening, and that are going to happen. (Revelation 1:19) Another reason is because it has significant relevance to the whole counsel of God, and that is why God included it in the first place.


God has given us not only the beginning of things in Genesis, but also the end of things in regard to how He closes the age. There is, however, another reason to study Revelation. There are commands there. Tucked within the writings and vision of John, there are commandments. What do they say?
Why are they there? Do they apply only to John, or do they command all of us?

Starting in February and taking us all the way to Easter, we’re going to take a closer look at the commands of Revelation. Why do they matter in today’s culture? Do they apply to me and my life? And how can I fulfill the Revelation mandate?

[Ron Otto, Preaching Minister]


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