BOOK of REVELATION
BY: AUDREY DRUMMONDS
In our introduction we established that this book is about the unveiling of the person and work of Jesus Christ in each of us. As you study, it is important to first read the scriptures to familiarize yourself with what is being said. We will not be quoting each scripture, but sharing revelation knowledge given by the Holy Spirit. Much of this knowledge is given through the witness of other scriptures. As the Holy Spirit speaks to your spirit, you may have additional scriptures (not included in our discussion) brought to your attention as the revelation of Jesus Christ is brought into a spiritual understanding in your life.
In the very first verse of the Book of Revelation, we are given the key to understanding the rest of the book. The word “revelation” means the disclosure of truth concerning things before known. It also means that things that were hidden before are NOW made known to all. This is the key that unlocks the bondage of death, hell, and the grave. This key has been hidden in us until an appointed time by God for the Holy Spirit to disclose to each of us what was given before the foundations of the world. Selah.
This revelation of Jesus Christ was given to John by the angel of Jesus Christ. Angels may be glorified mystical beings, but for our purpose of applying this book to our life we will consider the Greek word for angels which is “aggelos” meaning messengers carrying the Word of the Lord. The word messenger can be any being that carries the Word of God with Truth, Light, and Love for the entire body of Christ. They may be people that have gone before us to be with the Lord, or they can be people who are still in their natural bodies. This is how you could be entertaining angels without knowing who they are in the eyes of God (Hebrews 13:2).
John also tells us in this first verse that this wisdom he received is “signified” by the angel of the Lord. The word “signified” is the Greek word “semaino” which means to make known by signs and symbols. This first verse is a witness to the writings in the Book of Hebrews chapter two. The keys to the unveiling of Jesus Christ begins with the understanding that Jesus is the head of the body, but the body of Christ (Colossians 2:17) must first identify with their unity and oneness with Jesus in order for Christ to be manifested in the natural. We were created to declare that as He is so are we in this world (I John 4:17). This book is the unveiling of our true identity that we were given before time as the sons of God under the headship of Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior.
The world has gone through a period of over 2000 years of darkness and misunderstanding concerning the contents of this book. This has been necessary for the different parts of the body of Christ to be formed. However, it is time that we consider a new approach to John’s writings in order for each word to be a blessing and not a curse in our lives.
Verse 2: We read that John is testifying to everything he saw spiritually in the Word of God, and the testimony of Jesus Christ. The word testimony means martyr. John wrote his testimony on the Island of Patmos, which means killing of the past, or to look behind and see the finished work. The coming of the Lord in us depends on us letting go of the past, and living a life by faith knowing that the work Jesus Christ completed at His resurrection and ascension has already taken place. John is testifying of the death of Jesus Christ and the finished work (John 19:30). The phrase “hind sight is 20/20” illustrates what John’s perspective in his writing. This finished work is the manifestation of all having one mind; the mind of Christ, full of unconditional love and mercy for one another (I Peter 3:8).
God has declared everything from the end, not the beginning. He does not need time, because He is eternal. The realm of time is for us, not for His will, for He is Spirit. Before we were birthed in the womb, God had already completed the finished work of Christ in us (Jeremiah 1:5). He is the Lamb slain before the foundation of the world (Hebrew 4:3). In our natural and spiritual life, each of us must go through stages of growth at different times in our life. It is wonderful when we see our children grow and develop, but we don’t want them to stay children forever. So it is with God. He sees all mankind as His children. He finished the process of salvation before we were created. He has made a way for us to boldly enter into the throne room called the Holy of Holies. It is located in each of us as our inner most being. The Deep (this is God), calls unto the deep, our spirit (Psalm 42:7). This is where true fellowship with God takes place, not in our intellect.
When the Holy Spirit has witnessed to our spirit that we are the children of God, it is God’s timing for us to grow in Him. As children, we are already heirs of God and joint-heirs with Christ (Romans 8:16-17). However, if our spiritual growth does not continue past child like understanding, we are no different than a servant (always waiting on the master). God wants us to grow up knowing that we are sons, and if a sons, then heirs of God through Christ (Galatians 4:7). This is the travail that all of creation is groaning for with anticipation of the manifestation of the sons of God (Romans 8:19). It is the spirit in each of us which is like a cell of a body. Each cell has the DNA of Christ, but it takes every cell for the whole body of Christ to be manifested. If we allow our hearts to believe that some people will go to heaven and some will go to an eternal hell; we blemish the body, or bride, of Christ causing a hindrance for the Lord’s return.
God came to establish grace (verse 4), but He had to come through law because of the accusation made against His bride in order for grace to be established. He is a God of healing and restoration. He does not fail, and His will is that none shall perish (2 Peter 3:9). His plan was finished before the second Adam, Jesus Christ, was established on this earth. The first Adam came as a living soul which contrasted the life giving Spirit of the second Adam (I Corinthians 15). Our soul is how we think, but it is the spirit in us which declares who we really are. It is the vanity of a religious mind to think that man has a choice of controlling the will of God (I Corinthians 5:18-19, I Peter 1:15). Because of this way of thinking, mankind has been kept from enjoying the full inheritance of being in the family of God. This is the mind that crucified Jesus over 2000 years ago, and is still crucifying His body today. Religion says you have to do something to gain access for God to be your Heavenly Father even though we already have the DNA of the Father. God sent His son Jesus to reunite His whole family. It is foolishness on our part to consider that He will leave a part of Himself in hell because of men’s ignorance to the understanding of the Father’s love and mercy.
The Holy Spirit has the responsibility to draw all men to the Father. In the Father’s time and season, the Holy Spirit will give each of us the power to be a witness of Jesus Christ to bring forth the Kingdom of God (Acts 1:6-8). We truly have a mind of arrogance to think that the Holy Spirit is not going to be able to override the defiant will of man. We have hurt ourselves when we allow separation and division of the body by interpreting His word in this manner.
Chapter one, verse 3: “the time is at hand.” These few words are packed with the power to transform lives. He can be a “now” in fullness and glory in our today, or He can be Jesus of the past, and/or Jesus of the future. The promise of the finished work is that every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord of lords and King of kings (Phil. 2:10-11). We are not unworthy “sinners saved by grace,” but lords and kings submitting to Jesus Christ.
The thoughts and imaginations we believe will be manifested in our life (Proverbs 23:7). We are each one cell of His body. He is the Alpha and Omega. He is the circle of Life. If we were to begin at one point drawing a circle and end at the same point, which is the beginning, we would find that every place on the line of the circle carries equal weight. If we sliced into any part of the circle it would cause a hindrance to the flow of Life. The circle of Life cannot be destroyed, but time can cause a delay for the power of Life to reach its destination. In the process of delay, others may be hindered from receiving all that God has for them. The enemy of God does not care if we have received the Lord as our “personal savior.” Our DNA cannot be changed, and it is of God. Defeat to the enemy comes when we live life in the power and authority of the Father, as Jesus did; a son giving total glory and honor to Him by doing the Father’s business on the earth.
Think about a flat tire. The fullness of who He is must be seen today in each cell/person of His body for the fullness of resurrection life to come forth. The circle of life has always been there, but we are trying to produce life with a lot of “flat tires.” Once we see the finished work of Jesus in our own life we can operate in the power of resurrection life as a son of God. In order to operate in the Spirit, we must see the finished work by His faith (Hebrews 11:1). We must see all men complete and whole in Him (Ephesians Chapter 1).
Many pastors today say they only want to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The Gospel is the Book of Revelation, yet very few pastors are teaching it with the love and mercy of God. Gospel means “good news, good tidings” concerning God. Verse three tells us we will be blessed if we read and keep the words given to John. This is the same person who wrote the words of Jesus in John 5:24-28…
“Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life. Verily, verily, I say unto you, the hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live. For as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself; and hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man. Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which ALL that are in the graves shall hear his voice, and shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.”
Jesus became sin for all men, the good and the bad, clothing all with His righteousness. It is up to the sons of God to declare this Good News to the world versus judgment and condemnation. This is what the body of Christ, the church, should be declaring to the world.
After writing “the time is at hand,” John is told to address seven churches with a message from the Lord. He begins with the words “grace” and “peace” from the One who is the beginning and the end. We cannot manifest the fullness of “grace” and “peace” if we have judgment on any level. The word “grace” is the divine influence in our heart given to us from God, and we are to reflect it to others. The peace that John writes about is the object of divine promise which is brought about by God’s mercy, granting freedom and deliverance from all distresses of sin and strife.
The number seven symbolizes the finished work of God and a day of rest. It is a spiritual number, not literal. During this time in history there were many churches (not just seven). The church is the house or place where God resides. This number represents the key elements that must be dealt with in the body of Christ in order for her to become an over-comer who can rest as a son of God in the Holy of Holies. In 1 Peter 4:17 we read, “For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God.” In Matt. 7:1-2, “Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.” John is showing us that WE are the temple of God, the body of Christ. Our judgment today is to judge ourselves until the fullness of His grace and peace is manifested. We are not to judge others, but to see them as Christ sees us, for in Christ there is no condemnation (Romans 8:1).
In the book of Daniel, there is an illustration of three servants of God being thrown into a fiery furnace (chapter 3). They walked about in the midst of the fire, and they were not hurt, even their hair was not burned. There was a fourth form with them that was like the Son of God. In order for us to be willing to go into the throne room of God we must we willing to allow the fire to purify us and refine us into the image of Jesus Christ. We must allow all of “self” to be removed. The Holy Spirit will reveal to each of us how much “self” we still have hanging around, and it will happen when we least expect it. We will be caught off guard when the thief of “self” shows up.
In Deuteronomy 7:1 we are given seven “ites” that had to be destroyed in the land:
Hittites – violence
Girgashites – lying
Amorites – pride
Canaanites – rebellion
Perizzites – independent
Hivites – fear
Jebusites – religion
The “seven Spirits which are before His throne” is a reference to Isaiah 11:2. The Spirit of wisdom, the Spirit of understanding, the Spirit of counsel, the Spirit of might, the Spirit of knowledge, the Sprit of fear of the Lord, and the Spirit of righteousness. There is only one Holy Spirit, but the number seven is used to symbolize the fullness of God and His Sabbath rest. Again, this throne is where the Spirit of God is located around our inner most being, the Holy of Holies in each of us. These seven Spirits of God are also symbolized by John as the twenty-four elders. He is speaking of the mature in Christ that are before the throne, or the mercy seat of God.
Verse 5 exposes three lies about the deceiver that are brought out later in this book. This gives us Truth we need to set us free before we are trapped into a lie.
Jesus Christ is the faithful witness: this exposes the false prophet in Rev. 16. He is Truth, not a truth maker. He is eternity NOW, not a coming day. Today is the day of our salvation where we have our true identity in Him. This “today” is a point in time in each of our life when the Holy Spirit reveals TRUTH for the completion of the whole body to come into unity as one. Believers in Christ must love one another without judgment so that non-believers will be drawn to their Heavenly Father.
He is the first begotten (born) of the dead (first to be brought back to life): this exposes the beast in Rev. 13. Religion would like to apply this to the resurrection of Jesus Christ after Calvary, but if we think about it, he wouldn’t then be the first born of the dead. There were several people the Bible mentions raised from the dead before Jesus. However, He was the lamb slain before the foundation of the world. As we mentioned earlier, God declared everything from a finished work. He completed ALL before He spoke Genesis 1:1, “In the Beginning.”
He is the Prince of the kings of the earth: this exposes mystery Babylon in Rev. 17. Here Jesus meets the antichrist spirit on his own level as a prince, not a king. Jesus came as us and destroyed our enemy. We no longer have a battle to fight except what we allow our imaginations to create, and what we choose to believe that is not God. The antichrist spirit is manifested when we take the word of God and create our own interpretation that does not line up with the character and nature of God. Proverbs 25:2 tells us, “it is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honor of kings is to search out a matter.”
The words “thing” and “matter” came from the Hebrew word “dabar” meaning “word.” God’s glory is Christ. Jesus is the headship of Christ and we are the body, also known as His bride. The message John wrote in this verse tells us that we have already been made kings and priests to God, and His glory (the fullness of Christ) has already been given all power and authority. The “amen” tells us this is a fact that God had already established and cannot be changed. God has eternity for the manifestation of the body of Christ to reveal maturity and appropriate the inheritance already available to us. Jesus showed us that today we are kings with authority to destroy the enemy of our imagination by the faith of God in us which He gave to us through Jesus Christ.
In verse 5 we also read, “unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood.” This love is God’s love which can only be found in His identity, character, and nature. We tend to water down the word “love” with our intellectual understanding, but here we see that our true identity has been reestablished in His identity. HE washed (freed, loosened) us. It wasn’t a choice for us to make and it isn’t something coming in the future. It has already been completed. The blood is symbolism of the Passover when blood was put on the door post of the houses in Egypt for death to pass over all who were in the houses. These people did not experience death of their firstborn. Today, we are in the house of God. We do not have to experience death because the firstborn has already washed us with His blood. However, to be an over-comer we must have “ears to hear” what the Holy Spirit is saying to the churches.
Verse 6 puts extra emphasis on the declaration that He has set us free. John writes to let us know that the work is completed, and that “truth” has been declared in “love.” We are already washed from our sins and made kings and priests throughout the ages, and forever and ever. This is not a coming thing, but a completed work to be received NOW. The antichrist spirit will use one, or all, of these truths in a twisted, deceptive way to try and remove the “now,” and place “truth” in either a past or future element of time. This is the same pattern seen in Jesus’ temptation in the wilderness, and also in the discussion Jesus had with the two thieves on the cross. As we stated earlier, the antichrist spirit doesn’t care that you are a Christian. The concern is do YOU know the power that you possess in Christ Jesus? Do YOU know your true identity as a son of God, or do you see yourself simply “saved” from eternal hell? Many times our view of salvation has an antichrist spirit hanging on it. We must remember it isn’t about us, but about Him!
We close this teaching by sharing a daily devotion found in the book God Calling. On May 22 we read:
Yes! Claim, be constantly claiming. There is a trust that waits long, and a trust that brooks no delay—that once convinced of the right of a course, once sure of God’s guidance, says with all the persistence of a child, “NOW.” “Make no long tarrying, oh, my God.”
You are no longer servants but friends. A friend can command his friend—can know that all the friend, the true friend, has is his by right. That does not mean an idle living at the expense of a friend, but the claiming the friend’s means: name, time, all that he has, when your supply is exhausted.
Friendship—true friendship, implies the right to appropriate. And in God’s service is perfect freedom. Heirs of God—you are joint heirs with Me in the inheritance. We share the Father’s property. You have the same right to use and claim as I have. Use your right. A beggar supplicates. A son, a daughter, appropriates.
Small wonder when I see My children sitting before My House supplicating and waiting—that I leave them there until they realize how foolish such action, when they have only to walk into their Home and take.
This cannot be the attitude of all. There must be first a definite realization of sonship. END OF QUOTE
“Turn unto the Lord your God: for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and of great kindness.” (Joel 2:13)
“For the law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.” (Romans 8:2)
As we continue:
Verse 7 tells us that He comes with clouds. When we read “behold” anywhere in scripture, it is important to stop and ponder what is written. It is placed there to emphasize and help us understand that this is a spiritual message, not literal. The word “come” is really the word “appears” in the original. The word “with” is really “in the midst of.” Jesus appears in the midst of clouds. These clouds are not literal clouds in the sky, but witnesses of the Lord Jesus Christ. They are over-comers. Other scriptures which testify to this are: Hebrews 12:1, Isaiah 52:14, 2 Peter 2:17, and Jude 1:12.When we are over-comers in the Lord, scripture refers to us symbolically as clouds full of the water of Life ready to give to those that are thirsty.
In Jeremiah 4:13 we read, “Behold, he shall come up as clouds, and his chariots shall be as a whirlwind: his horses are swifter than eagles.” The horses and chariots represent you and me with Christ in the midst of us. We are the vehicle that carries Him. God is not building stables and pastures in the sky. Jeremiah finished this verse with “woe unto us!” Our tongue has the power of life and death (Proverbs 18:21). Do we speak Life allowing the mind of Christ to flow through us (Philippians 2:15), or death by lacing the “Word” with judgment and condemnation? The church is looking up in the sky for the return of the Lord, yet everyday He is being manifested out of the over- comers. Scripture tells us there will be wailing and gnashing of teeth. As people come into the presence of the Lamb in you they will be tormented. In their ignorance He will show up as a thief in the night by appearing in the over-comer. The over-comer will not have a clue of why people react to them the way they do, but it is because it is Christ in them others are seeing.
Verse 8: Jesus declares that he is the beginning and the end, not just present at the beginning and present in the end. Time is swallowed up in a person. Jesus is it! This verse is a witness to Genesis 1:1, “In the Beginning,” and John 1:1, “In the Beginning.” I Corinthians 15:45 tells us Jesus became the last Adam so that in His death ALL men would be dead on the cross, not just one man. He died as “me” is the revelation of truth that must be received in order for the manifestation of the last Adam to occur. In HIS resurrection I was raised (Galatians 2:20).
The word “Almighty” confirms to us that Jesus is God. He is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow (Hebrews 13:8). Many times the Lord will show us something that is truth, but not the whole picture of that truth. We hesitate to share because it doesn’t seem complete to our understanding. It is very important to humble ourselves and share revelation, even if it may seem strange, because we don’t know who carries the other part of the truth to bring it all into full understanding of the total revelation. Since we are each a portion of the body of Christ, no one portion can receive the glory, but all glory belongs to Him. Everyone will see Him individually and then corporately the body of Christ will be united as we manifest our true identity in Him. We must stay in fellowship with one another in love even though we may not agree in our understanding of the “word.”
Verse 9: John takes the focus off of what Jesus did and recognizes WHO he is and WHERE he is. As mentioned before, the Island of Patmos means death, my dying. I must see my own position of death on the Island with John to see the revelation that he received. John is “a new creature in Christ. Old things are passed away and behold, all things are new and all things are of God.” (2 Corinthians 5:17-18)
The word “patience” in verse 9 is not of our natural ability, but the peace that surpasses all understanding (Philippians 4:7). The word “was” means “caused to be.” John did not take himself to this place. God used Roman soldiers to get him there. The soldiers were acting upon orders given by the earthly ruler of the time, not because they were obeying God. God used the soldiers as part of the bigger picture for His will to be done. This book is a blessing to us today because the soldiers obeyed the earthly king. This is an illustration for us to realize that God has a purpose for ALL to bring forth His glory in the earth.
John was taken to this island AFTER he had been boiled in oil. Again, he did not wake up one morning and say to himself, “I think I will go boil myself in oil so that I can be closer to God.” I’m sure everything in his natural body and soul was crying resistance to this suffering. What does this mean for us today? Our oil is the anointing of the Holy Spirit consuming us with the fire of God. If issues or people cause a stirring in our lives that ignites negative reactions, then we know we have not yet arrived as over-comers. We still have to endure the Island of Patmos in our life. This is a place in each of us that God will bring us to die so that only Christ in us will be resurrected. It will not be a place in our life that we will volunteer to go. It is a place God takes us individually after we “think” we are spirit-filled believers. God doesn’t send children or non-believers to this place, but people that think they are living the life of Christ. If they think self is involved at all, then there is still some ego that needs to be removed.
Verse 10: John moves from death into resurrection life. Being in the spirit on the Lord’s Day is an eternal reflection of NOW. In the Old Testament the Lord’s Day was the 7th day, and the day of rest to remember that God brought them out of Egypt. They were no longer in bondage to the world (Deut. 5:14, 15). For New Testament believers the Lord’s Day is everyday. It is heaven on earth now in the flesh. Sunday mornings are an opportunity for believers to unite in celebration that the Lord’s Day is everyday, (Lamentations 3:22-23).
The only way to come into a Sabbath rest is to understand the process of how to depart from and “Egypt” mindset. This is what the Book of Revelation teaches. What was going on within Jesus the man every time He was confronted with trials and tribulations? What spiritual battles did He fight in order for miracles to take place?
Behind him John hears a great voice, as of a trumpet. The trumpet sound is the voice of God being heard from a Ram’s Horn which is a dead male lamb. Animal sacrifices always took place in the outer court of the temple of God. This is where the flesh had to be dealt with; in the natural elements of the world. In order to go into the presence of God, we must put the outer court, where the cross is, behind us. Old Testament understanding keeps us killing the flesh, dying to self daily. Jesus gave us the Holy Spirit which is manifested in the middle court. It is the responsibility of the Holy Spirit, who is our comforter, to teach and show us the way into the Holy of Holies while resting in the Lord’s Sabbath. Only those of the Tribe of the Levitical Priesthood were allowed beyond the outer court into the middle court. Today, Jesus is our Sabbath; He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. Not just a numerical day of the week. He is the first and the last Adam. He is the 7 x 70 which speaks of unconditional forgiveness everyday. He is the finished work of 49 which takes us into a jubilee of all things restored giving us the number 50 or unconditional grace.
The trumpet spoken of in this verse declares to John that in order to move forward he must see the death of Jesus Christ behind him, and he (John) is now resurrected from the dead. This is not a someday in the future experience for John. From this point on, he is honoring the Sabbath Day and keeping it Holy by obtaining salvation for mankind from a state of rest and peace in the Holy of Holies. At this point John is a “BE” Christ one versus a “DO-ER” Christian. He has recognized himself now as a “cell” of the body of Christ who carries within him all the identity of Jesus Christ. The voice of God was emphasizing to John that death is behind him. He is a spirit being while in his natural body, and his jubilee is NOW to be manifested. He has passed over death, hell, and the grave.
Paul wrote in Romans 6:3-4, “Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.” We continue down to verses 9-11, “Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over him. For in that he died, he died unto sin once: but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God. Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive in God through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
Another picture of the Lord’s Day is in Exodus 12 when the people of God experienced the death angel passing over their doorposts. This symbolizes to us that the blood of the first born (Jesus – our Passover) covers the door for the salvation of all those inside the house so death couldn’t enter in.
The first message Jesus gave in his ministry came from Isaiah 61:1 where he spoke in the synagogue about the day of Jubilee, (Luke 4:16-21). Jesus let the people know that their Sabbath; their jubilee was in front of them. He was their Jubilee, and therefore, they could leave the bondage of servant-hood to Egypt on that day over 2000 years ago. For this reason, religion crucified Him declaring that He was speaking blasphemy. Religion still makes that same declaration today. Our Sabbath is in Jesus Christ who brought us out of the sins of this world over 2000 years ago. Religion wants to keep us in bondage making us think it is still a future event (when we die and go to heaven.)
Paul wrote to the churches to bring forth the fact that when Jesus died on the cross we died with him. If we really are dead then how can we respond to the body and soul? We find ourselves as dead men working to keep dying trying to allow grace to abound. The real message of the cross should simply be that we are dead, and sin no longer exists in our Father’s eyes. If we died 2000 years ago, then we are free today to come into a Sabbath Day of rest. For us to function in the Revelation of Jesus Christ we must BE the sons of God doing the Father’s business from His position on the throne in the Holy of Holies. As children of God, we will get burned playing around with the fire of God.
The Book of Revelation gives us insight through John into how the day of rest comes forth so that we don’t try to bring it forth, but accept instead that the Sabbath is already in us. We do this from a posture of rest. John is in the spirit, the supernatural place in the temple of God known as the Holy Place, or middle court. This Holy Place in the lifetime of John was not seen by anyone except the Levitical priesthood, yet John is there now. The picture of John in this Holy Place, where only the priest could enter, illustrates our priesthood and the mindset God has given us as intercessors for all. The priest’s whole purpose was to serve God as an intercessor for the people. He was not to have any possessions or self glory. His life was to be lived to serve God alone by serving His children. I want to emphasize that John’s natural body is on the Island of Patmos, the place of his death. His dying is not future, but behind him in verse 10.
Verse 11: The churches that John writes to were chosen to carry a message to the individual believer, and then the corporate body of Christ throughout every generation.
Thyatira: odor of affliction
Philadelphia: brotherly love
Laodicea: justice of the people
Verse 12 tells us that John turned to see the voice that spoke and he saw seven golden candlesticks. Before we get to the candlesticks lets consider what is behind John. In the Holy place, if John is seeing the candlesticks then behind him would be the table of shew bread.
The bread on this table was eaten by the priest on the sixth day. It was arranged into two stacks with six loaves in each stack. Scripture tells us that the bread is Jesus, our bread of Life (John 6:48). The first stack tells us what Jesus did:
HE was crucified
He was buried
HE was quickened
HE was raised
HE is seated with the Father
The second stack was “ME” with “HIM” (Galatians 2:20).
I was crucified
I was buried
I was quickened
I was raised
I am seated with the Father
Jesus’ death was my death by the blood of the Lamb and the Word of my testimony (Rev. 12:11), for the testimony of Jesus is the Spirit of prophecy (Rev. 19:10). The word “spirit” is the Greek word “pneuma” found as number #4151 in the Strong’s Concordance. This word stresses the character of the Holy Spirit found in man which gives him the ability to think as the Father. It is man’s vertical window to view what is around him from a heavenly understanding.
John came to this revelation which is behind him now in verse 12, so that seeing the candlesticks tells him I am an over-comer now by the testimony of the blood of the Lamb, and the Word of my testimony. Not by my works, but by my acceptance that I died 2000 years ago with him, and today the words of my mouth are testifying to my true identity as a son of God. This is not a declaration to lift “self” up, but to glorify the Father as an intercessor for others just as Jesus did for each of us.
In verse 12 John sees the revelation of Jesus Christ in the church. Seven golden candlesticks speak of perfection, the character and nature of God in us.
Verse 13: “Clothed with a garment down to the foot.” This garment is the righteousness of God. Scripture tells us to wash one another’s feet (John 13:14). We are to clothe one another with the garment of righteousness putting ALL things under His feet (I Corinthians 15:27, Ephesians 1:22).
Around His chest area was a golden girdle symbolizing the character and nature of God. It is also the area where a mother’s milk is found to give nourishment and love to a child. As we clothe others with the garment of righteousness, we are also to feed them with love and mercy. Paul said in Philippians 4:8, “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.”
Verse 14: This verse talks about hair and eyes. Hair represents the covering of the head. It is what surrounds the mind where the body’s control center is. Think about this; in the natural, the hair is the dead portion of the body. In this verse it tells us the hair is white which represents purity with no blemishes. Putting it together, we have the mind of Christ reflected in a people that are alive in Christ and clothed with His righteousness, pure thoughts, and no condemnation of how they see things (Romans 8:1).
The eyes represent His vision. “The spirit of man is the candle of the Lord, searching all the inward parts of the belly” Proverbs 20:27. In Psalm 104:4 we read, “Who maketh his angels spirits, his ministers a flaming fire.” Deuteronomy 4:24 says, “God is a consuming fire.” The word consume does not mean destroy, but to take in. As God takes in everything, He refines by removing anything that does not reflect His character and nature. He has given us His eyes to see as He sees so we can speak the word of God with His power and authority. As sons of God doing the Father’s business, we have the ability by faith to see the manifestation of 2 Peter 3:10. This is not a doom and gloom time, but a time of rejoicing of what God is doing, and has been doing for over 2000 years in the body of Christ.
Verse 15: The feet in this verse represent lifestyle. His feet have been refined by the consuming fire of God. The word “elements” in 2 Peter 3:10 refer to the basics of life, our natural way of doing things led by our emotions versus allowing the Spirit of God to be the authority in our life. The earth belongs to the Lord and the fullness thereof. God is not going to destroy what He has created, but will refine it into His image. The feet represent where He takes us for refinement as we become the word. The earth in each of us is being burned up by His presence coming out of us. Many times when the Lord takes us for refinement it is not where we would choose.
“His voice as the sound of many waters.” We are told in Revelation 17:5 that this water is people of many nations and tongues. The water is the “Word of God.” As the body of Christ, we are many members who share a common DNA and carry the mind of Christ. When John heard “his voice” he heard a multitude of different people, nations, and tongues speaking the same word. It would be like hearing a million people shout the same message with the same Spirit of God. That message would be heard with clarity. This is what the church is supposed to be showing the world today; but instead, we have over 20,000 denominations declaring they each have the word of the Lord.
Verse 16: “Right Hand.” This represents full power and authority. Jesus sits at the right hand of the Father illustrating that His power and authority is flowing from these seven stars which we have already discussed. The church is the body of Christ, not a building or denomination. God gave us the 5-fold ministry to be overseers to the body. These are the star company. They speak the word with His power and authority and they live life from a spiritual or heavenly understanding, not a literal or natural interpretation.
Verses 13-16 illustrate to us that the churches are the candlesticks, with Jesus in the midst of the man company. The Alpha and Omega symbolizes that God is Light in Genesis, God is Love in John, and God is Life in Revelation. We have all of God in us today to be manifested so that Jesus can shine as the light of the world.
The candlestick was made of one piece of beaten wood with one central staff that had branches (Exodus 25:31). Jesus is the central staff that was beaten (John 19:30). He is the vine and we are the branches. He walks in the center of the church. We all abide in the same vine with the same root. Some branches grow faster than others, and some parts receive more nutrition than others, but all are created from the same beaten wood.
This is a good time to ponder what has really been written. Many times we try to bring Jesus into the works of the flesh. An illustration would be that we are to love our neighbor; however, if we try to love our neighbor out of a sense of responsibility as Christians we bring works into the issue. In the Spirit, loving our neighbor is a manifestation of who HE is in us for we no longer exist, but Christ in us. IF we really love in Christ it is a natural outflow of who He is in us, not a duty oriented process.
Jesus said the greatest commandment is to love the Lord God with all your heart, your soul, and your mind (Matthew 22:37). If we love God with ALL, then ALL becomes a reflection of Him. Therefore, the next commandment of loving your neighbor as yourself is you loving others as Jesus. If you really love in Christ, it is reflected as a natural manifestation, not as works, for in Christ there is no condemnation (Romans 8:1).
We do not become more righteous by acknowledging our sins, but by how great He is in fullness and completion in us NOW. God is NOW ALL in ALL, and the whole earth is filled with His glory. He desires for us to stop hiding our light or our true identity in Him. This TRUTH came forth 2000 years ago and He is still TRUTH today whether we are showing it or not.
The priest attended to the candlestick in the Old Testament. He used a snuff dish and tongs. The tongs were like scissors with hands on the end. This brings New Testament 5-fold ministry into the picture.
Apostles: they balanced the hand (thumb).
Prophet: they point the way; they are next to the apostle.
Evangelist: They have the longest outreach.
Pastor: They reflect the covenant of marriage.
Teacher: This is the smallest finger; they are able to get into the ear to hear.
Most churches today don’t have the whole hand ministry. They don’t see the palm used to hold or help, but see the back side of the hand used to judge. The hands on the tongs were used to trim the wicks. A bruised or charred wick doesn’t produce light. The ashes of the wick were placed in the snuff dish and brought to God. He said he would exchange our ashes for His beauty. (Isaiah 61:3) He gave us “the oil of joy for mourning, and the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness.”
The golden candlestick was fashioned after an almond tree. It represents Aaron’s rod that supernaturally budded in the Holy of Holies inside the Ark of the Covenant, or coffin. John sees seven golden trees. He sees a garden and hears a voice coming out of this garden. This place is not a piece of land on the earth, but a state of consciousness where we are one with the Father. Each of us has a garden in our midst where God meets and fellowships with us.
Genesis chapter three is found in Revelation chapter one. In Genesis 3 God asked Adam, “Where are you?” In Revelation chapter one, this question is being removed as the last Adam in you, Christ, is being revealed.
John doesn’t say anything original in Revelation. He uses Old Testament pictures, but doesn’t keep them the same as the Revelation of Jesus Christ is manifested. He takes the type and shadow of the old and brings them into reality. For example, the horses in Zechariah Ch. 1 and 6 are brought into reality in Revelation. Also, the term “son of man” in Ezekiel reoccurs in the book of Revelation. The church is considered a garden in I Corinthians 3:9 which ties to Genesis 3 and Rev. 1. The basic structure of the book follows the Feast of the Lord in Leviticus 23.
The Feast of Passover, Unleavened Bread, and First Fruits is seen in Revelation 2, 3, 4,5,12, and13.
The Feast of Pentecost: Revelation 6 and 7.
The Feast of Tabernacle: Revelation 8, 16, 21, and 22.
Paul and John had the same revelation of the same Jesus Christ. Paul is very practical; John is very mystical and visionary. In the Old Testament you see similar illustrations with Zechariah and Haggai. Zech is very mystical, and Haggai is practical as they both describe the same thing in rebuilding the temple.
Both Paul and John wrote to 7 churches. Paul’s message focused on helping the body of Christ move from the outer court to the middle court. John takes the body of Christ from the middle court into the Holy of Holies. God resides in all three courts, just as in an average house. There is a living room for worldly fellowship, a dining room for sharing a meal, and the bedroom where private, intimate time is shared. All three of these areas are part of one house. God is calling the body of Christ to share the intimacy of the inner court with Him. However, there are things in the other areas of the house that can’t be brought into the bedroom to have true intimacy with Him. This is what John is telling us we must put behind us to walk in spirit and truth.
In verse 16, we read of a sharp two-edged sword coming out of his mouth. Christ is calling forth Himself in us to be manifested by the truth of his word that will slice away the thief of the past and the thief of the future (Hebrews 4:12). Two thieves were on crosses next to Jesus. One thief challenged the Word with “if,” and the other believed in the “some day when I get to heaven.”
“His countenance was as the sun shineth in his strength.” (Rev. 1:16) This is not talking about the natural sun, but symbolic of the power and energy that penetrates the flesh or natural way of thinking. It is a spiritual ministry that goes out of the mouth of the “star” company. This company is not a religious system but people of all races, nations, and gender who stand before God in the Holy of Holies. They have gone through the refining fire of trials and tribulations and have emerged as over-comers by the blood of the Lamb. They are now living their life by His grace, power, and authority. Spiritual power goes forth when they speak the Word of the Lord, and it has nothing to do with their natural abilities. It is about Christ’s voice speaking through that person. Most speakers that I have heard speaking from a platform share wisdom they received from an earthly knowledge of God. Many times, we will hear the word of the Lord coming through a person that has a quiet spirit who sits in the back of the building.
Verse 17: In this scripture which says “saw him,” we must remember that John is in the spirit. Only the Holy Spirit can reveal Christ in us. “I fell at his feet as dead” is a reference to Galatians 2:20 and 2 Corinthians 5:17. All of our natural understanding (the veil) must be pulled back in order to reveal the inner court. The “fear not” is illustrating that God is in full control. In the inner court we do not have a spirit of fear for He is the First and the Last.
Verse18: “I Am” takes us to when Moses asked God who He was (Exodus 3:14). Jesus has already gone full circle through Life, death, and Life Eternal. He did this for us! He has the keys of hell and death. If we have the mind of Christ NOW, and we are His body NOW, we have no business taking His body through death again. It is a mockery to what He already completed on the cross. Every time we hang around a cross or empty tomb declaring we are “just a sinner saved by grace” we won’t be able to move into the “star company” realm to manifest His power and authority while in our natural body. Abraham’s life reveals to us that there are three realms of existence; the dust, the sand, and the stars. The dust and sand realms speak of an earthy perspective, whereas the star realm speaks of a heavenly perspective in life.
Even though God used many people to write the inspired word of God so that it would be carried throughout generations, there is a reason that the task of writing the Book of Revelation was given to John. It was the disciple John who tells us in the book of John 1:8-13, “He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light. That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world. He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. He came unto his own and his own received him not. But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God. Even to them that believe on his name: Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.”
Jesus is the light in EVERY man that came into the world. It doesn’t say just to those that receive Him as their personal Savior. Christ is already in ALL. However, in verse 12 and 13 we are told that those that do believe in Him by the Spirit and not by their own understanding are given the ability to function in the power and authority of the Father as a son because they are no longer children.
Back to Rev. 1:18, the “keys of hell and of death.” These words are not the description of a future place for non-believers. It is separation from God that they are experiencing NOW while in their flesh. According to the Strong’s Concordance, there is no place in Scripture that the words “eternal hell” exists. It is religion that has brought identity to these words, not God. These words are contradictory to themselves for God alone is eternal. He created ALL things (John 1:3). If hell and the grave really did exist the way religion has taught the body of Christ, believers would be able to be a part of it along with heaven because God would be there also (Romans 8:35-39).
The word “keys” in this verse is plural illustrating there is more than one area in which the imagination can form a “bottomless pit.” Keep in mind that nothing can separate us from the love of God (Romans 8:39), and “I AM” is the Door (John 10:9). Through the mind of Christ we have eternal Life which can now be manifested as our steps are directed by Him through time.
What man creates with his natural mind is temporal (2 Corinthians 4:18). Hell and death will continue to have a place as long as we allow ourselves to give them a place in our spirit. Once we leave this realm, we are in the presence of the Lord and Eternal Life (1 Corinthians 5:3). We are told in Ephesians 4:27, “to give no place to the devil,” and in Hebrews 2:14-18, we are blessed with the knowledge that Jesus took the power of death that the devil had on the children and destroyed it. He did this for all children, or all mankind, not just those that believe. To continue the work of the Lord for the children of each generation, God has raised up sons that believe in the finished work of Jesus Christ. “To be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.” (Romans 8:6)
Once a person has crossed over into the presence of God (whether in or out of the body), the only thing they see is Eternal Love for God is Love and can only commune with Himself – Love. Love must be given away. It is impossible to keep it. There is no one on the other side to give it to because they have the fullness of God in the realm of spirit. It is only on this side, while we function in “time” (the sense realm), that we can bring the eternal Love of God into all 3 dimension: spirit, soul, and body. This is the “bringing it back out” we were expressing once we experience the inner court. This way others can know Him as their Heavenly Father, and have hope of manifesting His body on this earth “Be not slothful, but followers of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises.” (Hebrews 6:12) Jesus is our example of living in a natural body with the full power and authority of God for He knew Him as Father. He gave this same ability to those that the Holy Spirit has revealed to them of being sons of God, (Joel 2:28, 29).
Verse 19: The word “hereafter” comes from the Greek word “meta-tauta” which means in the midst of these things. John did not write about future events, but about what is taking place in the midst of us. It is taking place in each person who is alive NOW, in those that have gone before us and in the midst of those in the future generations (Read Romans 8).
Verse 20: We have already shared thoughts about the number seven, the stars, the right hand, golden candlesticks, and angels. This verse is saying that the ministers or messengers of God have the nature of God and should be carrying the Light of God to give Light to others. The Greek word for church is “ekklesia” meaning the called out people. This is not a building with a steeple and cross. These churches or people were located in the Roman providences of Asia. These are areas where lifestyles were very worldly, certainly not proper like we might associate with a church today. The capital of the world empire was Ephesus which will take us into Chapter 2.
Colossians 2:8-10. “Beware least any man spoil you though philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ. For in him dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily. And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power.” Amen.
BOOK of REVELATION, Chapter 1 [Audrey Drummonds] ~BIBLE STUDY 1