The letter of Revelation was to be sent to the seven churches in Asia. These seven churches are mentioned by name in Revelation 1:11 and we will deal with them in great detail when we look at Revelatin chapters 2-3. Two important things to remember about these seven churches. First, these were real, literal church that existed at the time John wrote the letter of Revelation. Jesus spoke to these churches about real saints. Jesus spoke to these church about real sinners. Jesus spoke to these churches about real solutions. Jesus spoke to these churches about real solutions. Second, These churches are representative of every Christian church that has ever, and will ever exist. Every church (past, presend and future) contains some of the characteristics that marked these seven churches. The letter of Revelation may not have been specificially to Moose Creek Baptist Church (or your church), but it has as much to say about us as if it were addressed to us.
This is the first of many references in Revelation to the number seven. Biblically, seven is a number that suggests perfection, completion and fullness. The number seven is also a prominent number in our world today. There are seven colors in the light spectrum. There are seven notes in the musical scale. There are seven days in a week. The number seven appears in many instances in God's Word. God commanded seven feasts in the Law of Moses. There are seven mysteries in Christ's parables of the Kingdom of God. There are seven sayings of Christ on the cross. And at Jericho, there were seven priests, carrying seven trumpets, marching around the city for seven days, and on the seventh day they marched around the city seven times! The number seven is used some fortynine times in the book of Revelation. I have list just a few of the references and I encourage you to take a few moments and look them up.
Revelation 1:4-5 gives us a beautiful picture of the Trinity. It begins by describing God the Father as, from Him who is, and who was, and who is to come. We need to remember that our God is transcendent through time. We are dictated to by time, but time is dictated to by God. John describes the Holy Spirit by saying, from the seven Spirits before His throne. This is a direct reference to Isaiah 11:2 which tells us what those are:
The Spirit of the Lord
The Spirit of widsom
The Spirit of understanding
The Spirit of counsel
The Spirit of might
The Spirit of knowledge
The Spirit of the fear of the Lord
John then describes Christ as the faithful witness. Christ came to earth in human form to reveal the Father to us. Christ is also described as the firstborn from the dead and the ruler of all the kings of the earth. Take a few moments to look up these verses and see what they tell us about Christ.
Revelation 1:5b-6 tells us what Christ has done: Christ loved us. Christ washed us. Christ has made us kings and priests. Christ is coming! He will come with clouds (Acts 1:9-11) and even those who pierced Him will see Him (Zechariah 12:10) and all tribes (all humanity) will mourn.
John ends this section by reminding us that Christ is the Alpha and Omege, He is the Beginning and the End, and He is the one who is and who was and who is to come. Revelation 1:4 uses the exact same words to describe God the Father that are used here in describing Christ. This is a great reminder to us that God the Father and God the Son and God the Holy Spirit are all ONE! Christ is also the Almighty. This is the Greek word that means, "the one who has his hand on everything". Our God is sovereign!
Until next week! I hope that you are enjoying this study and if you ever made it to North Pole, Alaska we would be honored to have you join us. Please leave you comments and questions, and any prayer requests that you might have. It would be our greatest joy to pray for you.