Through the Bible with Les Feldick
LESSON 1 * PART 4 * BOOK 59
REVELATION 1:1-10 – PART 2
For those of you out in television, again, we just want to welcome you to a Bible Study. We just keep it plain and simple. I don’t claim to have all the answers, but hopefully we can prove what we say with Scripture, because after all, what man thinks means nothing, whether it’s myself or someone else. But what does the Book say. But as we study, always remember to rightly divide the Word as Paul writes, and there will never be any confusion or arguments. Paul was sent to us Gentiles with the gospel of salvation, and so it is in his epistles that we go for our instructions in this Age of Grace.
Alright, now let’s get back to Revelation chapter 1, where we left off in the last lesson and we’ll begin with verse 6. Remember now, the author of Revelation, who is John, is writing to primarily Jewish believers in view of the coming Tribulation that is right out in front of them.
“And hath made us (Jews) kings and priests unto God his Father; to him be glory and dominion…” Many of you already know where I can go to prove the point that this is all Jewish. Go back to Exodus chapter 19. And you see Paul never uses that term (kings and priest). So, if Paul doesn’t use it, but all the Jewish writers do, then what does that show? That it is for the Jew! It’s for Israel! The more I study, the more convinced I am the Church and Israel can’t be mixed. They can call me what they will, but you cannot mix God’s dealing with Israel (His earthly people), with the Body of Christ (His heavenly people.) You’ve got that distinction all the way through, and they can’t be mixed.
Let’s turn to Exodus 19. Now, just to show you that this is a called out assembly drop in with me at verse 3. They’ve come out of Egypt, through the Red Sea and they’re gathered around Mt. Sinai:
“And Moses went up unto God, and the LORD called unto him out of the mountain (that is Mt. Sinai) and he says, Thus shalt thou say to the house of Jacob, and tell the children of Israel;” Now, stop and think. Is there anything in there that involves a Gentile? Nothing! This is God dealing with Israel.
“Ye have seen what I did unto the Egyptians, (that is drowned them in the Red Sea) and how I bare you on eagles’ wings, and brought you to myself. (Brought them through the Red Sea, out around Mt. Sinai) 5. Now therefore, if you will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye (the nation) shall be a peculiar (Now, remember, I’m always stressing that word means something of intrinsic value.) treasure unto me above all people: (and the reason he can say that – He’s sovereign) for all the earth is mine. 6. And ye (Israel) shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and a holy nation.” Now, do you see how that’s almost word for word what John just said in Revelation. Alright, but let’s go all the way up and see how Peter puts it in his epistle of I Peter. Peter uses this same identical language. In fact, you can keep your hand in Exodus 19 and just flip back and forth and see how identical these words are. Peter is writing under the same circumstances that, I feel, John is.
I Peter 2:9
“But (Peter says) ye (and remember he’s writing to Jews, just like Exodus was) are a chosen generation, a royal (what?) priesthood, an holy nation, (the word “holy” simply means set apart for God’s purposes. They were a set apart people for God’s purposes) a peculiar people; (That’s exact language) that ye should show forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light:” That’s how Peter puts it. Now, come back to Revelation and John says almost exactly the same thing. That He has made us (Jews – The believing element of Israel); He has made us kings and priests unto God and His Father to be glory and dominion forever. Now, once again back to Revelation and verse 7.
“Behold, (John writes) he (the Messiah, the Son, the returning Christ) cometh with (what?) clouds: and every eye shall see him,…” Now, let’s just back up one page to Jude, verse 14:
“And Enoch also, (Jude writes, way back there in Genesis) the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints, 15.To execute judgment (His Second Coming will be associated with the final destruction of the Gentile world) upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly…” Now, back to Revelation, again; verse 7:
“Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him.” Now, that’s not going to happen at the Rapture. The world isn’t going to see the Rapture take place. It’s just going to be a sudden, silent disappearance. They’re not going to see Christ as He has come to the air. But here, He’s ready to come all the way to the planet earth, He’s going to stand on the Mt. of Olives and the prophecy is that every eye shall see Him.
“…and they also who pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him,…” For the piercing then, we have to really go back to Zechariah, chapter 12. Come back again to the Old Testament, and again I want you to realize that these are all Old Testament references which tie it all to the nation of Israel. The exact language, and how can anybody separate what God says to Israel in the Old Testament prophets and what He’s saying to Israel from the words of the apostle John. Zechariah chapter 12 verse 10 where God says through the prophet:
“And I will pour upon the house of David, (That’s not a Gentile term, that’s Israel) and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and supplication; and they (the house of Israel, or the house of David, the nation of Israel) shall look upon me whom they have pierced. And they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn.” Well, now, there’s another beautiful illustration in the Old Testament of a family mourning over a great joyful reunion and you all know what it is don’t you? Joseph. All right, let’s come all the way back to Genesis and pick up Joseph being reunited with his brethren.
Go to chapter 45 of Genesis. And let’s just start at verse 1, and we’ll hit just a few of the pertinent verses. Now, remember what we’re talking about. That every eye will see Him at his returning at His Second Coming, primarily to deal and confirm and fulfill all the promises made to the Old Testament prophets, and there will be a great mourning, tears of joy, really, when they see and recognize their Messiah, and here is a picture of it.
“Then Joseph could not refrain himself before all them that stood by him; and he cried, Cause every man to go out from me. And there stood no man with him, while Joseph made himself known unto his brethren. (The ones that had sold him into slavery) 2. And he wept aloud: and the Egyptians and the house of Pharaoh heard. 3. And Joseph said unto his brethren, I am Joseph; doth my father yet live? And his brethren could not answer him; for they were troubled at his presence.” But now as you go through all this, Joseph puts them at ease.
“Now therefore be not grieved, nor angry with yourselves, that you sold me hither: for God did send me before you to preserve life.” That was all part of the purposes of God. That Joseph would have to be in Egypt to gather the grain that would help everyone to survive during the seven years of famine.
“For these two years hath the famine been in the land; and yet there are five years, in the which there shall neither be earing nor harvest. 7. And God sent me before you to preserve you a posterity in the earth, and to save your lives by a great deliverance.” So it wasn’t you that sent me here, but God. Now, come on down to verse 13.
“And ye shall tell my father of all my glory in Egypt, and of all that ye have seen and ye shall haste and bring down my father hither, 14. And he fell upon his brother Benjamin’s neck and (what?) wept;…” Well, not tears of remorse, but tears of what? Joy! Joy unspeakable! Now, verse 15. He didn’t limit it to Benjamin.
“Moreover he kissed all his brethren, and wept upon them: and after that his brethren talked with him.” And so it was that great joyful reunion between Joseph and the estranged brethren. Well, so it will be when Christ returns to the Mt. of Olives and will finally be accepted by his covenant people, Israel.
All right, back to Revelation chapter 1 verse 8. Now, the Lord is speaking through the Apostle John and He says:
“I am Alpha and Omega, (the first letter in the alphabet and the last letter in the alphabet) the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.” Now, if you start making a study of this Book of Revelation, you will find that John uses the same terms of Deity that the Old Testament uses, but Paul does not. And there again is that graphic difference. This is all Jewish. Paul never refers to – for example – term the “Son of Man”. Did you know that? But all the rest of the Scripture that’s Jewish will constantly refer to Christ, or God the Son, as the Son of Man. Paul never does. That’s just one.
But now, let’s go back to Isaiah 41 verse 4, and see how all of this ties together with the Old Testament. John the Jewish writer, writing to Jews. Isaiah the Jewish prophet writing to the Jews. And they say basically the same thing.
“Who hath wrought and done it, calling the generations from the beginning? I the LORD, (and we’re going to look a minute to see who that is) the first, and with the last; I am he.”Now, come all the way back – keep your hand in Isaiah, we’re coming back in a little bit – come all the way back to Exodus again, chapter 3. A portion that you’re all well acquainted with, I hope you are anyway – you should be. Here we’re going to look at the burning bush. And Moses is taken by it that it’s burning and yet it’s not being consumed. And so he comes to the burning bush and the Lord speaks out of the bush:
“And he said, Draw not nigh hither: put off thy shoes from off thy feet, for the place whereon thou standest is holy ground. 6. Moreover he said, (the burning bush) I am the God of thy father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, the God of Jacob. And Moses hid his face; for he was afraid to look upon (who?) God.” So, who’s the burning bush? God.” All right, move on down to verse 13. All the way through it’s a constant reference to the Lord and to God.
“And Moses said unto God, (there at the burning bush) Behold, when I come to the children of Israel, and shall say unto them, The God of your fathers hath sent me unto you; and they shall say to me, What is his name? (What’s the name of this God you’re talking about? Moses says) what shall I say to them? 14. And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM; Thus shalt thou say to the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you.” See how plain that is, and this is the Lord, this is God the Son speaking. We refer to him as Jehovah and Adonai and the Almighty, which is what I’m going to have you look at next. Come back to Isaiah chapter 9, and we’ll begin with verse 6. Now, these were all Old Testament terms concerning the Son. None of which, if I’m not mistaken, Paul uses. He does not use these same terms of Deity.
“For unto us (and I’m always emphasizing, who is the us? Israel. This isn’t talking to the world in general. This is talking to the nation of Israel) a child is born, unto us a son is given: (now we jump all the way up to the millennial reign) and the government shall be upon his shoulders: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God,(The same term that John uses) The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. 7. Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end upon the Throne of David,…”See how the Scriptures constantly emphasize, that when Christ returns to set up this Kingdom, He will rule from David’s Throne in Jerusalem on Mount Zion.
Now, to take a little further take on the I AM of Exodus 3, go up to John’s gospel, chapter 8, most of you know where I’m going. And for sake of time, we’ll just go all the way down to verse 51. Here’s Christ in His earthly ministry, Jesus is speaking, and he says:
“Verily, verily, I say unto you, If a man keep my saying, he shall never see death. 52. Then said the Jews unto him, (see there it’s amongst His earthly ministry. No Gentiles here.)Now we know that thou hast a devil (demon). Abraham is dead, the prophets; (they’re dead) and thou sayest, If a man keep my saying, he shall never taste of death. 53. Art thou greater than our father Abraham, who is dead: and the prophets are dead: whom makest thou thyself?” 54. Jesus answered, If I honour myself, my honour is nothing: it is my Father that honoureth me; whom ye say, that he is your God. 55. Yet ye have not known him; (that is their God) but I know him: and if I should say, I know him not, I should be a liar like you: (quite a statement wasn’t it?) but I know him, and keep his saying. 56 Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, (that is through the eyes of faith) and was glad. 57. Then said the Jews unto him, (now do you pick up the scoffing?) Thou are not yet fifty years old, and you have seen Abraham? (Can’t you just see the smirk on their face? Come on, what are you trying to do? You can’t fool us. Abraham lived 2000 years ago, and you’re telling us you’ve seen him? Now look at Jesus’ answer) 58. Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, (who?) I am.” Do you see what He’s showing them? That He was the I AM of the Old Testament Deity. He was the Jehovah God of Abraham, He was the pre-eternal Creator. He was the God of everything, and He made no apology for making those claims.
Alright, now let’s come back again to Revelation again, and see how the Apostle John can just pick up all these things concerning this Christ who is now about to return as King of King and Lord of Lords, once the horrors of the wrath and vexation have unfolded.
“I John who also am your (what?) brother, (now spiritually of course. Racially? Yes. He’s just as much a Jew as the Jews to whom he’s writing.) and companion in (what?)tribulation,…” They were all under the same pressure. Now, you’ve got to remember, these Jews to whom these men are writing, Peter, James and John, were already under a lot of persecution, even before the Tribulation began. They were under pressure from the Orthodox Judiasers. They were under pressure from the pagan Romans, so they knew what persecution was. And so John could say, I can co-relate with you.
“…am your brother, and companion in tribulation, and in the kingdom (that is the kingdom promises that they’re all waiting for.) and patience of Jesus Christ, (I John) was in the isle that is called Patmos,…” a little island off the coast of Western Turkey, a little off the mainland.
“…for the word of God, and for the testimony of Jesus Christ.” Now, the speculation is that it was a means of house arrest, or persecution, but not all historians agree with that. It may have been a normal life for John on the island of Patmos. There isn’t anything to indicate that he was under intense persecution at this time, but he may have been. But whatever, he’s on the island of Patmos, “for the word of God, and the testimony of Jesus Christ.” Now, verse 10. This verse has been so twisted out of shape it’s unbelievable.
“I was in the Spirit (that is under the control of the Spirit of God) on the Lord’s day,…” That’s not Sunday. That’s what most everybody thinks, that this was a Sunday and that he was writing this. No – What is the day of the Lord in Scripture? Tribulation!
So what is he saying? That miraculously the Spirit of God is transporting him into the Tribulation so he can write about it in the first person. He knew what he was writing. He was experiencing it in the realm of the Spirit, not writing on the Island of Patmos on Sunday afternoon. No, he was being transported into the Day of the Lord and that term the “Day of the Lord” throughout all the Old Testament, throughout the Jewish epistles is always a reference to the seven years of the Tribulation. Never forget that.
Alright, I haven’t got time enough to go on in to another verse, but here it’s as plain day that as John is in the Spirit, in this transformed Day of the Lord, so he can write about it with first hand experience, he experiences the voice behind him as a trumpet. And so we go on from there and we pick this up in our next program where this voice is again the voice of the Lord Jesus Himself.