Overview of the Book of Revelation

THE BOOK OF REVELATION: JESUS’ TRANSITION PLAN

The book of Revelation is Jesus’ transition plan to shift history to the age to come. He will not do this without the deep involvement of His people. This is our story. It is worth making the effort to understand it. Revelation is not hard to understand; it was written for uneducated peasants.

My premise is that anyone can understand the main story line and structure of the book of Revelation in less than one hour and can learn to say it to someone in less than one day.

Two points often overlooked: first, Jesus does not go away with us but comes to stay. There is no such thing as the end of the world. Second, the heavenly and earthly realms come together (Eph. 1:10). The natural realm is not suspended but enhanced by the power of the resurrection.
9 Having made known to us the mystery of His will…10 that He might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven and which are on earth–in Him. (Eph. 1:9–10)

THE BOOK OF REVELATION: JESUS’ END-TIME BATTLE PLAN FOR THE CHURCH

The book of Revelation reveals the glory of Jesus (Rev. 1:1) and His plan to transition the earth to the age to come. The events of the generation in which He returns will have unique dynamics, requiring our involvement. Thus, we need the unique information in Revelation to equip us.

The main theme of Revelation is Jesus’ return to earth to rule all the nations, but evil governments will resist this. His end-time battle plan is to physically destroy all the evil governments on earth by releasing His judgments on them during the Tribulation (Rev 6-19).

The main reason that people do not read the book of Revelation is that they have a wrong paradigm of both the book and the Tribulation and do not understand its structure and symbols.

As Moses released God’s judgments on Pharaoh by prayer (Exod. 7–12), so the Church will release the Tribulation judgments on the Antichrist through prayer. The miracles and judgments in Exodus and Acts will be multiplied and released worldwide through prayer.

As the book of Acts describes the power of the Holy Spirit that was released through the early church, so the book of Revelation describes the power of the Holy Spirit that will be released through the end-time Church. I refer to Revelation as the end-time book of Acts. It is a canonized prayer manual that informs us of the ways in which Jesus will manifest His power.

Through prayer the end-time Church will bind or stop Satan’s activities and loose or release Jesus’ power on the Church and against the Antichrist.

18 I will build My Church, and the gates of Hades (authority of hell) shall not prevail against it.

19 I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven. (Mt. 16:18–19)

These judgment events do not happen to us as helpless victims of Satan but are released through us as participants with Jesus. Jesus’ judgments are released to remove everything that hinders love. He is at war to have His wedding.

Revelation is Jesus’ battle plan, our prayer manual and the Father’s infallible script or blueprint for eschatological revolution that is rooted and grounded in perfect love that casts out fear (Eph. 3:18 and 1 Jn. 4:18). God is love and His perfect love will drive sin off the planet.

1)Jesus’ strategic battle plan to confront the Antichrist and drive evil off the planet

2)The Church’s canonized prayer manual to release judgment on the Antichrist

3)The Father’s perfect blueprint or script (story line of love) to prepare the Bride

The main focus in Revelation is God’s judgment against the Antichrist’s empire. The secondary theme is tribulation against the saints from the Antichrist. Out of 403 verses, there are only twelve (3%) that speak directly about persecution.

There is one generation with the mandate to hasten the Day of the Lord by keeping the prophecy (Rev. 22:7); in other words, by engaging in the uniqueness of the eschatological battle plan as faithful witnesses. There is only one generation that is prepared to follow through with keeping the prophecy, having the character, skilful insight and anointing in prayer to release its contents.

The greatest spiritual breakthroughs in history will occur, affecting our culture in the areas of business, education, government, media, and arts, etc. Hebrews quotes Haggai’s prophecy:
26 He has promised, saying, “…I shake not only the earth, but also heaven.” 27 Now this, “Yet once more,” indicates the removal of those things that are being shaken, as of things that are made, that the things which cannot be shaken may remain. (Heb. 12:26–27)

SYMBOLS

Revelation is to be interpreted in its plain meaning. The events and numbers in Revelation are to be understood literally unless the Scripture specifically indicates that they are symbolic (Rev. 1:20; 5:6; 11:8; 12:1, 3, 9; 17:7, 9, 15-18, etc). We know a passage is symbolic when the text indicates it. For example, the seven lampstands are symbolic of seven churches (Rev. 1:20).

The seven main symbols of Revelation:

1)Dragon: symbolic of Satan (Rev. 12:3, 4, 7, 9, 13, 16, 17; 13:2, 4; 16:13; 20:2)

2)First Beast: symbolic of the Antichrist (Rev. 13; 14:9–11; 17:3-17; 19:19–21; 20:4, 10)

3)Another Beast: symbolic of the false prophet; called another beast just once (Rev. 13:11)

4)Harlot Babylon: a global, demonically-inspired religious and economic system (Rev. 17–18)

5)Seven heads: represent 7 empires that persecuted Israel (Egypt, Assyria, Babylon, Persia, Greece, Rome, revived Roman Empire of Dan. 2:41-42; 7:7; Rev. 12:3; 13:1; 17:3–16)

6)Ten Horns: represent a ten-nation confederation that serves the Antichrist (Rev. 17:12–13)7) Woman with a Male-child (Jesus): is the faithful remnant of Israel through history (Rev. 12)

STRUCTURE OF THE BOOK OF REVELATION: FOUR MAIN PARTS

There are four parts in the structure of Revelation. The fourth part has five chronological sections in which the events occur in sequential order.

Rev. 1 Pt. 1: John’s CALLING to prophesy about the End Times. John gives 18 truths about Jesus’ majesty that form the way he prophesied about the End Times; these are meant to equip us.

Rev. 2-3 Pt. 2: Jesus gave 7 LETTERS to 7 churches. The instructions Jesus gave to these 7 churches about overcoming sin give us practical insight into what we must also overcome today. Jesus selected the churches identifying the main issues that would challenge the end-time Church.

Rev. 4-5 Pt. 3: Jesus takes the SCROLL containing the earth’s title deed and Jesus’ plan to cleanse it.

Rev. 6-22 Pt. 4: Jesus’ BATTLE PLAN. Jesus reveals His main story line of love—His plan to cleanse the earth of evil, including the Great Tribulation judgments against the Antichrist.

His plan is laid out in 5 chronological sections describing events that unfold in sequential order. Each section is followed by an angelic explanation to help us understand that section.

The 5 Chronological Sections tell us what happens to the Antichrist’s followers in 21 judgment events (7 seals, 7 trumpets, 7 bowls). These intensify in severity as they unfold.

The five chronological sections are all events against the kingdom of darkness, released by the praying Church. Revelation begins with the Antichrist coming to power.

The 5 Angelic Explanations function as a parenthesis, putting the story line “on pause”.

They answer questions arising from the chronological sections: Why is God’s wrath so severe? What will happen to us? An angel explains why the judgment events are necessary and tells John what happens to God’s people, including what Jesus will do to help us, and what the Antichrist will do to persecute us.

Rev. 6 Chronological Section #1: the SEAL JUDGMENTS against the kingdom of darkness.

Rev. 7 Angelic Explanation #1: we receive PROTECTION from judgments and falling away.

There will be a great increase of glory on the persecuted Church (1 Pet. 4:14).

Rev. 8-9 Chronological Section #2: the TRUMPET JUDGMENTS against the Antichrist’s empire.

Rev. 10-11 Angelic Explanation #2: we receive DIRECTION by a great increase of prophetic ministry.

Rev. 11:15-19 Chronological Section #3: the SECOND COMING PROCESSION, the rapture, and the total removal of all governmental leaders on earth who agree with the Antichrist. The seventh and last trumpet (1 Cor. 15:52; Rev. 10:7; 1 Thes. 4:16): Jesus replaces all governmental leaders on earth in a hostile takeover.

In His procession, Jesus first travels across the sky to rapture the saints (every eye sees Him; Rev. 1:7), then through the land of Edom (modern-day Jordan; Isa. 63:1-6) then into Jerusalem to the Mount of Olives.

7 Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him, even they who pierced Him. All the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him. (Rev. 1:7)

1 Who is this who comes from Edom (modern day Jordan)…this One traveling in the greatness of His strength?…2 Why is Your apparel red…? 3 I have trodden them in My anger, and trampled them in My fury; their blood is sprinkled upon My garments, and I have stained all My robes. 4 For the day of vengeance is in My heart, and the year of My redeemed has come.” (Isa. 63:1-4)

The Second Coming procession occurs over a thirty-day period which can be seen by comparing the 1,260-day½year)(3 time frame (Rev. 11:2 –3; 12:6, 14; 13:5; Dan. 7:25; 9:27; 12:7) with the 1,290 days of Daniel 12:11.

The Antichrist will operate his worldwide worship system, the abomination of desolation, for 1,290 days or 43 months. However, the time frame for the saints prophesying, being supernaturally provided for and being persecuted is 1,260 days or 42 months (Rev. 11:3; 12:6; 13:5–7).

From the time that the…abomination of desolation is set up, there shall be 1,290 days. (Dan. 12:11)

I will give power to my two witnesses, and they will prophesy 1,260 days… (Rev. 11:3)

Then the woman fled into the wilderness… here 1,260 days. (Rev. 12:6)

And he was given authority to continue for 42 months…7 It was granted to him to make war with the saints and to overcome them. Authority was given him over every tribe…and nation. (Rev. 13:6-7)

Rev. 12–14 Angelic Explanation #3: the Antichrist’s violent CONFRONTATION against the saints and everything that is good requires that all his governments be replaced.

Rev. 15-16 Chronological Section #4: the BOWL JUDGMENTS destroy evil infrastructures in society. Rev. 17–18 Angelic Explanation #4: the SEDUCTION by Babylon’s evil religion will permeate and

infiltrate all the structures of society, requiring that Babylon be totally destroyed.

8 I (Father) will give You (Jesus) the nations for Your inheritance…9 You shall break them with a rod of iron; You shall dash them to pieces like a potter’s vessel. (Ps. 2:8–9)

Rev. 19–20 Chronological Section #5: Jesus’ TRIUMPHAL ENTRY to Jerusalem (Rev. 19:11–21:8) Rev. 21–22 Angelic Explanation #5: the RESTORATION of all things (Acts 3:21; Rev. 21:9–22:5). At Jesus’ coming, He will restore all that God originally intended to be in the Garden of Eden.




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