Wednesday, November 20, 2013


A Verse by Verse Study
My own personal journey
"A journey of studying what’s revealed to me!"

Jesus, His Church, Your Family

Revelation 1:20 The mystery of the seven stars which you saw in My right hand, and the seven golden lampstands: The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches, and the seven lampstands which you saw[j] are the seven churches.

What is a mystery? Mesterion in Greek means a hidden thing that is not obvious.
The first word of this verse indicates that we are dealing in symbolism that goes beyond the obvious.  Yes, there were seven actual churches John’s letter would be delivered to but there was less obvious hidden meanings to the symbolism of the lampstands and stars.

Jesus told his disciples about mysteries in Matthew 13:11

He answered and said unto them, because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given.

When Daniel interpreted Nebuchadnezzar’s dreams, the King of Babylon recognized Daniel’s God as a revealer of mysteries.  Remember the same ability to understand mysteries was given to Joseph and is what brought the King of Egypt’s attention to him, eventually leading him to the 2nd highest office in the land.  Even foreign leaders are known to recognize that our God is a revealer of mysteries.  Here in the book of Revelation, John is being given the interpretation of a mystery and that is “The Church!”

Daniel 2:47 The king answered Daniel, Of a truth your God is the God of gods and the Lord of kings and a Revealer of secret mysteries, seeing that you could reveal this secret mystery!

We know, we are supposed to be able to read the bible and understand mysteries so let’s look at the information given and try to understand, knowing that according to this, there ARE some hidden meanings.  He tells us the answer when he says, “The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches, and the seven lampstands which you saw are the seven churches.”

ROMANS 16:25 Now to him that is of power to establish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began…

1 Corinthians 2:7 But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom which God ordained before the world unto our glory!

God has given us the ability to know & speak the mysteries of God and here he reveals he’s speaking of His Church!  
In verse 11, he tells John he wants these letters delivered to THE SEVEN churches (which are in Asia,) and names them.  He doesn’t name every church that was in existence but the 7 in Asia:

Revelation 1:11
send it to the seven churches which are in Asia—to Ephesus and to Smyrna and to Pergamum and to Thyatira and to Sardis and to Philadelphia and to Laodicea.

We know there were seven candlesticks and seven stars. He clearly tells us the seven stars are angels of the churches and the candlesticks are the churches.  We read the scripture above that the gospel of Jesus Christ IS the mystery that the world did not know for thousands of years but now was made known.  That Christ came, gave his life so we could have eternal life was planned by God since before time began but was revealed through the gospel after Jesus death and resurrection.  That we could be saved and be made part of his body, his church is a mystery the bible tells us even angels desire to look into.

If these candlesticks are a Menorah (seven candlesticks on a base,) then we know this represents the WHOLE church.  Historically studies of the number seven usually reveal seven as God’s perfect number. It represents perfection, goodness, completion and wholeness. He created the earth in 6 days and on the 7th rested from his work. In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth (Genesis 1:1) and on the 7th day God finished his work (Genesis 2:2.)  Usually there’s a law of first mention in the bible that gives a frame of reference for interpretation.  On the 7th day, God rested and finished.  His work was complete.  

Hebrews 4:10
For he that is entered into his rest hath himself also rested from his works, as God did from his.

You could say, “In the beginning, God laid the foundation for his church and on the 7th day, his work in his church is complete!”  There is much revealed concerning the events of the last days in Revelation but there’s no Revelation of the exact day. A completed work in his church is revealed though and it causes us to cry out, “Even so come Lord Jesus!”  His work was complete on the 7th day of creation and he’s done a thorough work for his church.  Until he returns, he’s continuing to draw new people into his church through the preaching of the mystery through his church.  His mystery is spoken both in preaching and through their lives.  Through Jesus God’s work is finished.  Jesus sacrifice has given us rest and as we “Come to him,” we are able to lay down our weariness and burdens and rest in his love. 

There are really many ways to interpret why God addressed 7 churches but I think we can all agree he is addressing his entire, perfectly complete body; his church, his bride!  God doesn’t only desire to speak to 7 out of millions of churches or the people of seven churches, leaving out the millions in other churches.  God desires to speak to the entire body of Christ.  The candlesticks stand on a base. The base is the foundation and represents Christ.  Outside of Christ we are nothing.   Each church is a part of his body.  We know there were many churches in that day that weren’t mentioned yet we know that through letters written to and in the church, we as modern day Christians have the whole canon of Scripture.  I believe each church had different issues and through these issues God was able to in completion and perfection cover things that through the ages would reach his whole church.  The whole lampstand was seven but was one!  There was no candlestick broken off making the whole incomplete.  The base wasn’t missing.   There was nothing missing.  It represented “his churches,” and it was complete with one base.  Jesus walked among these candlesticks and had his angels assigned to each part of the candlestick.  There was one star (angel) for each church. There was no church without an angel.  I believe the whole of the 7 candlesticks, with one foundation (Christ,) with the angels of God assigned to them, represent the entire body of Christ then and through the ages and the entire body of Christ has the ability to know the mysteries of God found in his Revelation!  Now just think about that!  Each part of the body of Christ, Christ’s church has an angel assigned to it!  My friend, you have an angel assigned to you to help you and to carry out his Word over your life!  Whether the number 7 represents 7, 1000 year periods or 7 church age periods, to me is not the fullness of the Revelation but that God knows his church, has revealed himself and his will to his church, has placed angels on assignment for his church and walks among his church is the issue!!!  He addresses his church with the Revelation the church needs!  He calls out to his church and walks among her!  This Revelation is powerful because it shows God knows right where we are when we fail and when we succeed; when we are close and when we are slipping away.  He gives what we need to come to him and to walk with him in fullness and power. Even though he was dead, he was alive and he is alive today and walks among us!  If God’s church ever came into the full Revelation of who we are, the lost would quickly be saved and we’d see miracles in great numbers!  All Christians would be on fire, walking in close relationship with him on a personal basis and walking in great power and love. As he addresses us through his Word, what he has to say will speak to every member of the body of Christ no matter which church age we are in.  His Word is alive and powerful and is able to locate the condition of our heart and change us by his power.  Therefore in addition to understanding eschatology may we understand ourselves as we are found in him!  What good is it for us to understand all mysteries concerning his coming if we aren’t going to be found in him when he comes back.  May we understand where we stand and may we understand who we are.  May we look into his eyes and as John did see the fire within that burns for his bride, his church!  Let this book speak to us each on a personal level as part of the whole candlestick with angels assigned.  Let us see that when he had John write his letters to his churches, he was writing his letter to us!
Now let’s take this a step further and see that if we are “in him,” and he “in us,” then we should have the same love for one another that he has for us.  The “church,” the “body of Christ,” is a part of us.  We are brothers and sisters in the Lord.  Too often the church has become competitive and divisive.  How many ministers are estranged from one another over doctrine, or competitiveness or even misunderstanding? Brothers and sisters in Christ should be able to look past flaws as he did and see our need (as the great songwriter Dottie Rambo sang!)   When we look at one another we should be looking through the eyes of Christ filtered with the same love for one another as he has for us.  The bible says we are known of the world by our love for one another.  Therefore let’s take this Revelation of his church and purpose in our hearts to love one another as he has loved us which according to the bible, along with loving God sums up and fulfills all of the law of God!

John 13:35 35 By this shall all [men] know that you are My disciples, if you love one another [if you keep on showing love among yourselves].

Before going on to read what Jesus said to his churches, let’s first take the step to view the body of Christ as one body. Let’s recognize that Jesus has angels on assignment to his entire body.  Let’s recognize his will is that we be one and that we love one another.  It’s not his will that even one should be disconnected or left out.  Unity is truly one of the things that is lacking in the modern day church.  It’s also what makes the church powerful.  Little children, let us be one and let us love one another that the world may know that we are his disciples! Let us not hate over our differences but recognize that although we are all different, just as the 7 churches were different, we all are joined together through our base, Jesus Christ! Amen!

Tuesday, October 8, 2013


A Verse by Verse Study
My own personal journey

"A journey of studying what’s revealed to me!"

Jesus, His Hand, Your Comfort

Revelation 1: 17- And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as dead. But He laid His right hand on me, saying to me, “Do not be afraid; I am the First and the Last. 18 I am He who lives, and was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore. Amen. And I have the keys of Hades and of Death.

He Laid His Right Hand on Me
When Jesus laid his hand on John I don’t believe this was in the context of the doctrine of “laying on of hands,” for all the different reasons we practice this in the New Testament Church.  I believe this was in the context of what Jesus said next, “Do not be afraid!” Yes, I know John had fallen down because of the awesomeness of what was happening.  There was Jesus appearing to him!  That same Jesus he had watched ascend into heaven was now back on earth appearing to him.  We’ve described his appearance in other notes so John had every reason to fall on his face!  Jesus laid his hand on him and said, “Do not be afraid!”  When Jesus walks into your living room, there may be at first a tendency to be afraid but when his love overwhelms you, you fear no more!

I don’t believe that was the only reason Jesus appeared to John (to show his awesomeness, make John afraid, and then tell him not to fear!)  I believe (and of course have 22 chapters of proof,) there was more needing to be said.  I also believe there was more to the touch.  I believe this was a comforting touch. In the Old Testament it was identification’s foreshadow.  The person laid their hand on the sacrificial lamb to identify with the one that would be slain.  Jesus was the one slain but here, instead of John identifying with him, he was identifying with John.  He was saying, “I know where you’re at! I’m alive and well and will be for all eternity.”  He was letting John know this wasn’t the end of the story.  Well he also knows where you’re at! He knows your address and this isn’t the end of the story! John was in prison. He had given his all to follow Jesus and it seemed things weren’t ending well.  Jesus was letting John know first of all: the experience was real; second: there was no reason to fear, and third: everything that had happened since John dropped everything to follow Jesus had not been in vain. In fact in our next study we’ll see Jesus telling John to “Write these things!”  He actually had more for John to do when John thought he was through.  You can apply that to your life as well. You may think you’ve done all you can for the kingdom and that your usefulness is through but God has more for you to do. Just as he goes on to tell John to “Write,” there is something he will ask you to do!

Here, Jesus said, “Don’t be afraid; I am the First and the Last.  I am he who lives and was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore. Amen. The Amen here literally means to “Stop and think on that!”  Let’s do that. Let’s stop and think on that!  It’s not over.  Jesus may have come and gone from this earth but he’s alive and well!  The story’s not over. He’s alive forevermore and the most exciting times are in the future! Hey!

If you’re in a place where things haven’t gone as expected, take some time with him today. I’m sure he’ll touch you just as he touched John. Let Jesus lay his hand on you today and comfort you.  Let him tell you, “Don’t be afraid.  I am he who lives and I am with you! I am the first and the last and you’re going to make it to the end of this present trial. It’s a good ending. I have the keys!”  He may also let you know, “The best is yet to come! There are exciting days ahead!” “Look to the horizon and you will see we will share an eternity of awesomeness!”  In fact he told John, “I am alive forevermore!” Wow! We have forever ahead of us! 

He Knows “The End” From “The Beginning”
For the body of Christ, that’s good news.  It’s not necessarily good news to those who won’t accept him.  There’s more to this story. We may have reached a climax but we haven’t reached the end.  For those whose names are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life, there’s a good ending.  Just as in most books you can turn to the last page and know the end before you reach it, so we have been given the bible and we can know the end from the beginning!  Believe me, God knows!

Isaiah 46:9, 10 
Remember the former things of old,
For I am God, and there is no other;
I am God, and there is none like Me,
10 Declaring the end from the beginning,
And from ancient times things that are not yet done,
Saying, ‘My counsel shall stand,
And I will do all My pleasure,’
God clearly does know the end from the beginning. If any of us were to look back on our lives, we would see that any time we received a sure Word from God it came to pass.  Many things God has told us have not come to pass but if he said it, it will come to pass!  So it is with the end times. It will end just as the back of the book says.

In light of that, I believe the hand on John was a hand of comfort.  When you are troubled, there’s nothing like a friend just laying their hand on you.  Somehow it takes away the fear and some of the pain.  Jesus was letting John know that even though he was in prison, the story wasn’t over.  Think on that. John is in prison no more! He’s in glory. At the time the hand was laid on him, he was still exiled but now at this moment he’s with Jesus before the throne of God!

You may be in the midst of your greatest trial but if you’re in the midst, you haven’t reached the end.  John was in the middle of his trial but now it’s over and the ending was good.  God has a hope and a future for you too! He has good plans for you just as he does for his entire body!

Jeremiah 29:11 for I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.

Things may not go the way you expected them to go just as they didn’t for John and all of the Christians of that day but the ending is good.  He gives us a future. He gives us a hope. He has plans for peace and not evil.  Just as the early church had to endure, so we may have to endure but there is an end and it is good.  It is peaceful.  We have something to hope for as a body and as an individual and it is good!  Just think, in the beginning, God said, “It is good,” and in the end we can say, “It is good!”  In the middle, we can say, “It is well with my soul because I have no fear! God has a hope and a future and it is good! He knows the end from the beginning and he has already declared it!”

Jesus goes on to say, “I have the keys of hell and death!”  For John that must have been a great comfort.  At the moment it seemed evil was loose and he and Jesus were standing together in the place of exile.  Jesus had been killed.  It was true he had risen, but yet, for the moment John was in prison.

Hell is a prison.  Once there a person will not be able to get out. The devil will be thrown there once and for all one day and will not be let out. So will millions that don’t choose Jesus.  For those that have chosen Jesus no matter where their lives are now, they will be free forever. There will never be another tear and there will never be another sorrow.  If there is anything you fear right now, (and John of all people had every reason to fear,) throw it at the feet of Jesus. Let him comfort you. He has the key and the story isn’t over.  He isn’t on the cross and he isn’t bound by chains, gates, bars or a stone. He’s alive forevermore and he has the keys.

He says, “I am the one who lives! I was dead but I’m not dead anymore! I’m alive!”  Jesus is alive and well and able to help. He says, “I’m the First and the Last!”  I can change that to modern English slang and say, “It ain’t over till it’s over!”  It ain’t over folks.  Things may at times look dim and grim.  Even as we move closer to the coming of the Lord we may see dark clouds on the horizon but it ain’t over!  There’s much to be done and we need to know that although we’re in the middle of the story, the story ends well.  Let’s allow Jesus to encourage us with these Words!  Let’s allow him to show us the back of the book.  Then let’s fear not and get on with the business of doing what he’s called us to do until we reach the end of the story.  Turn to the back of the book (the Bible,) and look at what it says:

Revelation 22:20, 21 He who testifies to these things says, “Surely I am coming quickly. Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus!  21 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all.  Amen.

It says I come quickly!  That’s the back of the book my friend, for both the body of Christ and for your trials.  The end comes quickly and so does the eternity of peace, so fear not! Amen!

Sunday, September 8, 2013


A Verse by Verse Study
My own personal journey
"A journey of studying what’s revealed to me!"

Jesus, Beyond Comprehension

Revelation 1: 14-17 His head and hair were white like wool, as white as snow, and His eyes like a flame of fire; 15 His feet were like fine brass, as if refined in a furnace, and His voice as the sound of many waters; 16 He had in His right hand seven stars, out of His mouth went a sharp two-edged sword, and His countenance was like the sun shining in its strength. 17 And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as dead.

In the last note we talked about Jesus the Lampstand and delved into what John saw just a little. I’m not doing this study so I can know the details of the end times or the possible meaning of numbers.  I’m not touching on too much symbolism except when obvious. I don’t need to know exactly when Jesus is coming back or exactly what will happen. The Word says it’s for the Father to know the exact day and hour of Jesus return and no man will know. We can know seasons though and we can look into the things God has revealed to us. The book of Revelation is just that! It’s a Revelation.
John saw one that looked like the Son of Man as revealed in previous verses. Let’s delve a little deeper….. Who else had a similar vision?  Daniel did.  Daniel said he saw “THE ANCIENT OF DAYS,” sitting on a throne and he had hair as white as wood.  John said he saw one like the Son of Man with hair like wool and eyes like fire. Daniel saw “THE ANCIENT OF DAYS,” with hair like wool and his throne was of fire!  Then Daniel saw one like the Son of Man come TO THIS ANCIENT OF DAYS.  Daniel saw the Son of Man receive all power and authority from the ANCIENT OF DAYS.  They are one and the same yet the Son of Man is yielded to The ANCIENT OF DAYS!
Vision of the Ancient of Days
Daniel 7:9 “I watched till thrones were put in place,
And the Ancient of Days was seated;
His garment was white as snow,
And the hair of His head was like pure wool.
His throne was a fiery flame,
Its wheels a burning fire;
10 A fiery stream issued
And came forth from before Him.
A thousand thousands ministered to Him;
Ten thousand times ten thousand stood before Him.
The court was seated,
And the books were opened.

First, Daniel saw one identified as THE ANCIENT OF DAYS.

The one John saw was identified as THE SON OF MAN!  

Daniel also saw THE SON OF MAN a few verses later!

Revelation 1: 12 Then I turned to see the voice that spoke with me. And having turned I saw seven golden lampstands, 13 and in the midst of the seven lampstands One like the Son of Man, clothed with a garment down to the feet and girded about the chest with a golden band.

The one John saw had hair as white like wool! 
The one Daniel saw had hair as white as wool!
Are these one and the same or are they different?  Is both true! 
Friends, this is why you can’t explain God in human, secular, natural terms.  Jesus our Savior is both one with God and distinctly the Son of God! He is also distinctly man, born of a virgin!  Everything about Jesus is both supernatural and natural. Jesus is God in the flesh! He and his Father, the ANCIENT OF DAYS are ONE! They can’t be separated. This is what makes our God different from any God.  This is what makes our book, the bible different than any other “alleged” religious book.  No other book makes the claim our book makes.  Our Jesus, our Savior is both the ANCIENT OF DAYS AND THE SON OF MAN!  He IS THE ANCIENT OF DAYS and he is submitted TO the ANCIENT OF DAYS!  His claim is that there is only ONE God but that he IS God and that he has a FATHER who is God!  In God three CAN BE ONE and they are inseparable and distinctly individual.  With God all things are possible!
Look at more of Daniel’s vision.  One like the Son of Man comes to the ANCIENT OF DAYS who is on the throne!
Daniel 7:13 “I was watching in the night visions,
And behold, One like the Son of Man,
Coming with the clouds of heaven!
He came to the Ancient of Days,
And they brought Him near before Him.
14 Then to Him was given dominion and glory and a kingdom,
That all peoples, nations, and languages should serve Him.
His dominion is an everlasting dominion,
Which shall not pass away,
And His kingdom the one
Which shall not be destroyed.
Here, one like the Son of Man comes TO the Ancient of Days!  John saw one like the Son of Man! He looked the same as THE ANCIENT OF DAYS!  Now look at the throne of the ANCIENT OF DAYS.  His throne in Daniel’s vision in verse 9 says it is a throne of fire!
Ezekiel was another one, in addition to John who fell on his face when he saw God’s glory.  He also had a Revelation very similar to both Daniel and John.  Read the whole chapter of Ezekiel 1 to find what Ezekiel saw! I’m excluding the whole text for the sake of space saving.

Ezekiel first saw a vision of the glory of God that could not be imagined in the mind of mere man!  He didn’t just see 3 as 1. He saw 4 living creatures, all moving in unison, being lifted by wheels within wheels.  Each creature reveals something about God. The creatures look in four directions which represent the directions of the earth, the directions of man and then they move as the Spirit leads them.  The bible says the eyes of the Lord go to and fro throughout the earth looking for those whose heart is toward him, that he can show himself strong to (2 Chronicles 16:9!) There was glory all around. Ezekiel could barely describe the glory!  I have another study where I break down this glory to the best of my ability but that’s for another time.  Ezekiel saw wheels in the middle of wheels.  He saw the appearance of fire and brightness and in the middle of it all he saw a man!
Ezekiel 1: 26 And above the firmament over their heads was the likeness of a throne, in appearance like a sapphire stone; on the likeness of the throne was a likeness with the appearance of a man high above it. 27 Also from the appearance of His waist and upward I saw, as it were, the color of amber with the appearance of fire all around within it; and from the appearance of His waist and downward I saw, as it were, the appearance of fire with brightness all around. 28 Like the appearance of a rainbow in a cloud on a rainy day, so was the appearance of the brightness all around it. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the Lord.

So when I saw it, I fell on my face, and I heard a voice of one speaking.

This ONE Ezekiel saw was both God and man! It says he saw the appearance of the glory of the Lord! It says from within that glory he saw the appearance of a man!  He said he saw a throne.  Daniel saw a throne of wheels. Ezekiel saw a throne of wheels. Upon that throne Daniel saw was THE ANCIENT OF DAYS! Coming from that throne and on and above that throne Ezekiel saw a man!  God is not a man! The Word of God says he is not a man that he should lie! 

What we are seeing friends is another shining example of our beloved Trinity!  These examples are found in many places throughout the Word of God!  God who is not a man has a son, called The Son of Man.  He is submitted TO the Father but he and the Father are one!  Jesus is God. The Father is God. They are both one and the same and they are also different.  The Father is not a man. Jesus is both God and Man!  God became flesh so he could be a man and in all points be tempted as we are yet without sin!  Jesus is both God and Man!  Praise his name! This is beyond human description! As the beautiful song says, “You are beautiful beyond description, too marvelous for words, too wonderful for comprehension, like nothing ever seen or heard!”  If our book and our God was comprehendible to the human mind, he wouldn’t be God but he’s not comprehendible to the human mind. It takes a Spiritual revelation as John, Ezekiel and Daniel saw!  Ours is the only book that goes beyond human comprehension which is why our bible must be read and understood with spiritual revelation from God! Praise God!  Aren’t you glad you are not in the hands of man but in the mighty hands of a living God, who is more beautiful and powerful than human minds can fathom!

Maybe that’s why they fell on their face! When we get a Revelation of God, we may also fall on our face.   Let’s address that for a moment!  As Pastors, Teachers, Evangelists, Prophets and Apostles, those of us in ministry and those of us who are lay ministers should see people fall on their face.  If God is coming through our ministry, he’s going to touch people and when he does, if they get a Revelation as John, Daniel and Ezekiel did, they too may fall on their face.  When we are so dignified, we are embarrassed to respond to the touch of God, we may be finding ourselves too dignified to receive a touch from God because most people touched by God in the bible showed a physical reaction.  Both Ezekiel and John fell on their face!  As I think about it so did the guards present at The Resurrection! So did the soldier when Jesus healed his ear!  So did Abraham and Paul and the disciples present at Pentecost!  So did the keeper of the prison at Paul and Silas’ supernatural jailbreak!  Daniel was already down in a lying position but said he was troubled in his spirit and body! He said his countenance changed when he had visions from God.  I myself have been supernaturally touched while in a lying position and found myself unable to get up until the Spirit released me. I have also been touched while standing to the point I could no longer stand.  May we get back to believing in the Power of God and may all ministers be as Paul and let their preaching not be done with just convincing Words but with demonstration and power!

1 Corinthians 2:4 And my speech and my preaching
 were not with persuasive words of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, that your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.

Our God is supernatural.  He is above and beyond all things. He is beyond comprehension with the natural mind. Look at this scripture in 1 Corinthians 2: 9-14:

1 Corinthians 2: 9-14 But as it is written: “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, Nor have entered into the heart of man, The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.”
10 But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God.11 For what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so no one knows the things of God except the Spirit of God. 12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God.
13 These things we also speak, not in words which man’s wisdom teaches but which the Holy Spirit teaches, comparing spiritual things with spiritual. 14 But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

We can’t comprehend our God or the things of God with a natural mind. Our God is Super-Natural and that is why he is above all.  Every other religious book on the planet can be understood with the human mind but our book takes Spiritual revelation and is veiled to those who read who do not have the Spirit of God within!  Praise his name, he reveals himself to his servants!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013


A Verse by Verse Study
My own personal journey
"A journey of studying what’s revealed to me!"

Jesus, YOUR Revelation
Revelation 1: 12-14 Then I turned to see the voice that spoke with me. And having turned I saw seven golden lampstands, 13 and in the midst of the seven lampstands One like the Son of Man, clothed with a garment down to the feet and girded about the chest with a golden band. 14 His head and hair were white like wool, as white as snow...

I've alluded to this statement before. John turned and saw the voice that spoke to him.  The bible says Jesus is and was the Word of God.

John 1:1,2 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God.
When John turned, he saw more than a person; he saw seven golden lamp stands and one "like" the son of man!  We'll learn later the lamp stands represent the seven churches where the letter will be distributed.  This distribution did address each individual church but there were more than 7 churches in that day. Those were the ones in Asia. There were many house churches  scattered in various places.  These were the ones Jesus addressed that would ensure this Word reached the church at large.  Because of this distribution, you have the letter before your eyes today!  When he said give these to the churches in Asia, he was writing his love letter to you!  Jesus TODAY is walking among us. He is walking among his church. His church is not only in 7 places. His church is his bride in the world at large.  He IS in our midst. He is the light in our midst!  He is our direction. He gives us sight. He causes us to see through the murky waters and through the dense forest of the trials of life.  When we're lost in the woods, he's the way out! When we go through the storms of life, he is there. When he is pleased he lets us know and when we need discipline we hear his conviction... as they did! The bible says he will never leave us or forsake us.  He has given us his Spirit and at times God opens our eyes to see the voice that is the way.  As long as we are on this earth we will hear his voice saying "This is the way, walk ye in it!" At times we are able to see the Word of God as John did!

This reminds me of a song that says, "Open the eyes of my heart Lord.... I want to see you!"  We need to see him as he is, not as he was!  We need to hear what he is speaking to us today!

In studying this, I wrote the above day before yesterday and yesterday evening on the way home, I heard the Lord say in my Spirit to me and all who read:

He said "There is a lamp inside of you and I walk among your lamp stand in the midst of your heart!" 
This really is about us. Sure he's number one but on this little speck in the universe called Earth, God placed man and before he made the first man or laid the foundation of the earth, the plan of salvation for all of mankind was put into place.  It's about you and it's about me.  We're living in the middle of the story and just as he knew John, and he knew the churches, he knows you and he knows me.  One day all the world will worship the King of Kings and Lord of Lords!

Revelation 13:8  All who dwell on the earth will worship him, whose names have not been written in the Book of Life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.

He is the fire that burns.  We see in this passage we'll see his eyes like fire! Jesus is the lamp stand lit with the very presence of God!  This reminds me of the passage where Abram went into a deep sleep.  He had cut a sacrifice into two parts, representing the covenant of God, as he had been instructed by God to do.  God put him into a deep sleep and then passed among the sacrifice with a burning lamp.  When I looked up the Hebrew pictorial word meaning of the word interpreted "lamp," I found it means a man despised.  Jesus is the lamp.  The man that was despised and rejected now lives within our hearts. How can a lamp mean a man despised. Think about it for a moment.... to be in the light you have to accept the light. To reject the light, you simply flip the switch.  We can choose to flip the switch and walk in darkness.  When we do that, we are rejecting the light.  The man that was despised and rejected was the one cutting covenant and the covenant was his body broken.  He lives within our hearts today! He is risen!  He is the Word of God. He is the lamp that burns. He is the fire inside. He is our guide! He does walk among us and we need to cry out to him, "Open the eyes of my heart Lord! I want to see you!"  I want to walk in the light of the lamp!  We don't want to see him as dead and gone. We don't want to walk and live in a world of darkness!  We want to see him as alive and risen and sitting on the throne in his kingly garments.  We are living in the middle of the Greatest Story Ever Told!  He's the star of the show and we are the co-stars.  It's all about him and all for us!  At the end of this book, we'll read "He wins!" When we read that it also means, "We win!" When he wins, we win!  Never fear my friends because the lamp inside of you is walking in your midst, burning with the fire of the oil we have been given, the oil of the Holy Spirit. He guides the way until we reach that day! Jesus will in the next few verses address the Church that leaves its first love.  Let's keep our fire burning bright.  Turn and see the voice that speaks.  Cast your cares upon him and fall in love with him all over again because he is in your midst today!  Just as he will never leave you, let us never leave him.  Let's not flip the switch and despise the lamp! Let's renew our love and speak with him today!

His hair is as white as wool, not the dark wavy hair we see in pictures!  White hair represents age and wisdom! Jesus is THE Ancient of Days! He was with God in the beginning! He was present when earth was created! He was There when God said, "Let US make man in OUR image!"  We stand in the presence of the Ancient of Days! He is our God! He is THE very wisdom of God incarnate in man!  Society tends to reject the elderly at times.  The elderly are viewed as a passing generation- as old fashioned! People want to be youthful and they admire youthfulness but the bible tails us to stand in the presence of the gray head!  The gray head represents wisdom. The elderly have more knowledge and many have more wisdom than the youthful grasp yet they are rejected.  My father has a hard time remembering things these days. I love just sitting in his presence and listening to him tell stories of the past. There's nuggets of wisdom in the stories he remembers.  Someday it will be too late. I won't hear him speak anymore until that day we meet again and his memory is fully restored. Treasure the wise elderly in your life and treasure the Ancient of Days who is not only filled with wisdom, but he IS wisdom!

1 Corinthians 1:30
But of Him you are in Christ Jesus, who became for us wisdom from God—and righteousness and sanctification and redemption

When I think of Jesus hair as white as wool, I can't help but also consider in addition to wisdom, the color of the hair of a lamb! Most lambs are white.  Remember, the sacrificial lamb the Jews offered year to year had to be a perfect lamb! Jesus was our perfect lamb AND our risen King. When we see him as King, we are never to forget he was the perfect lamb of God! The King of Kings left his place in glory to be our lamb of God that would pay the price for us to have a resurrection body in the presence of God, just as Jesus does!

John said he saw one "like" the son of man!  Well, he did see the Son of Man but he didn't really recognize him! This was Jesus but this may have been the first time John saw him since the Resurrection!  Maybe it has been a while since some of us have seen him, making it hard to recognize him.  Maybe we are seeing him through glasses clouded with our earthly troubles.  We need to know Jesus came as a humble servant but he is now our Risen King! He's no longer hanging on a cross.  He is risen, victorious and is clothed in royal garments.  In those days and even in these days your garments identify you! Garments identify royalty and wealth.  Garments are also uniforms and identify profession! Jesus was clothed in kingly garments right before John's eyes and in those garments he was walking among his church. We need not fear! The King of Kings is among us!  He was no longer wearing the crown of thorns that mocked him. He was no longer wearing the tattered garments that were stained with blood.  In this vision, his sash was one of gold identifying him as the king everyone had hoped he would be! They just didn't know it would happen like this so John was surprised and said he looked like the son of man!  Jesus carried both titles, Son of Man and Son of God! He was the Word of God incarnate!  He was with God in the beginning before he ever came to earth and he was also born of a woman in the lowly state of the son of man!  He was both lowly and king and this was something the human mind could barely fathom. This was what shocked the religious world and this is what shocked the devil.  Because he was son of man, he could pay the ultimate sacrifice as the Son of God and pay the penalty for every other son or daughter of man! He could become our redemption, being the first to receive the resurrected body and he could dwell in the presence of God and man for all eternity, being the mediator that brings us together! This was more than the devil could have possibly imagined and this was blowing John's mind and he said "I saw one that looked like the son of man!"  In the same way Jesus blew the devil's mind and John's he's got more mind blowing victories in store for his children. No matter where you are or what you are going through never forget Jesus on the cross was temporary; John on Patmos was temporary and you in your trials are just temporarily there. Your savior lives and your future is good!

This Revelation given John is our Revelation! We see Jesus in his risen state. We see the Risen King and we see him walking among us! Another thing God asked me in this study is, "How have I revealed myself to you?"  We all have an experience with God- that moment we were born again or the times God has dealt with us!  Just fathom for a moment the thought that this same Jesus was Adam and Eve's Revelation, the one that would crush the head of the serpent.  He was Jacob's Revelation, the ladder to heaven!  He was Ezekiel's Revelation, the enormous rolling fiery cloud, the Wheel In the Middle of the Wheel, the Glory of God that lives, breathes and moves in every direction at the moving of the Spirit of God; Isaiah's Revelation, the suffering servant and victorious Messiah; John the Baptist's Revelation, the one who's shoes we are unworthy to loosen yet was the perfect the Lamb of God who hung on the cross... for us!  He was Peter's Revelation, the Son of the Living God! He is John's Revelation, Son of Man AND the one moving among the lamp stands of his church! He is our lamp! He is our stand! He is our fire! He is our love! He's alive and well and today he wears a sash of gold! He's King of Kings! He's your Revelation!  Praise his holy name!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Revelation 1:11 YOUR ALPHA AND OMEGA


A Verse by Verse Study
My own personal journey

"A journey of studying what’s revealed to me!"


Revelation 1:11 “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last,” and, “What you see, write in a book and send it to the seven churches which are in Asia: to Ephesus, to Smyrna, to Pergamos, to Thyatira, to Sardis, to Philadelphia, and to Laodicea.

Jesus is Alpha and Omega.  He's not only THE Alpha and Omega but he is YOUR Alpha and Omega.  Both are Greek words meaning beginning and end or first and last.  Jesus isn't just the beginning or just the end.  In your own life, don't just start well with Jesus without finishing with Jesus because he isn't going to abandon you. He's going to stay with you through it all! He isn't going to begin with you and then tire of your relationship, nor is he going to give up on you when the going gets tough.  He's the author of your faith and he's the finisher of your faith and he's doing a perfect work with and in you.

Hebrews 5:9 And having been perfected, He became the author of eternal salvation to all who obey Him...

Hebrews 12:1,2  Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Recognizing Jesus as the author of our faith, we recognize our faith was his idea.  Just coming to him to be born again means we lay all of our burdens at the foot of the cross.  We enter into a race in which we run with him. Our goal is the same as his, the joy set before us.  Our joy is in him.  Our new life is in him and although there are trials and temptations, finishing the race means we endure in-between the obstacles that come our way and cross the finish line.  Our life on earth is just the beginning.  While there's a finish line, which is our eternal destination, our life doesn't end there! Praise God we live forever in a place with no more tears and no more sorrow...a world without end! Let's therefore take the advice in Hebrews and lay aside sins and weights.  Let's lighten the load and place every burden at his feet.

Jesus is not just the author and finisher of our faith as individuals but for the entire body of Christ. He mentions the 7 churches and names them one by one.  Later, he will address each one according to their present state.  He will speak his Word in a way that will minister directly to their most desperate need.  We all will find ourselves somewhere in the Words to his church and the Word that ministered to them will minister to the intimate places in our hearts.   Although he is risen from the dead, ascended into heaven and seated at the right hand of God the Father, he is present by his Spirit. John was "in the Spirit," and heard a voice and SAW what he spoke.  Jesus named the churches one by one!  He didn't say the letter was only FOR those churches but he said to distribute them there.  He knew that through this distribution, this WORD, the prophecies of THIS BOOK would reach the entire body of Christ, becoming part of the Canon of Scripture. God is intimately aware of his church; his bride; his love and he is the author and finisher of HER faith.  He is ever present and ever making intercession.  What a comfort to know Jesus sits at the right hand of the father and there, he is praying for me! There, he is praying for you!  He ever lives with that purpose, to see his bride come home!   His Word is alive and well as he is and he is with us! He will never leave us or forsake us. He will bless us and correct us.  He will make his bride ready. He is not only our author, our starter, and our companion.... he is our finisher!  When we as his body, lay aside our weights and look unto him, we will walk through this life and one day we'll step across that finish line and be with him forever! Amen and glory! It excites me to think about that!

Jesus is also not only the author and finisher of our faith, he is the author and finisher of this world. The bible says by his Word, the earth both came into existence and is held in existence.  One day, every Word of this prophecy will come to pass and we'll see the end of the story of earthly creation.  May we find ourselves "in Christ" on that day!  If "in Christ," the story ends well.  If not, the ending isn't so great but we'll leave that for another study.  Just know he is the beginning and the end.  The Word of God opens with the phrase, "In the beginning," and ends with these words:

Revelation 22: 20-21  He who testifies to these things says, “Surely I am coming quickly.”  Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus! The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all.  Amen.

Everything in between is all about him and the joy set before him. He is gathering all things to himself but the choice is ours whether we will be gathered and end in his joy or will we have that undesirable end? The choice is ours! May we be found in his grace!  Won't you accept his grace today? Won't you lay your burdens down at his feet? Won't you hear his voice calling you to run your race with him by your side?  If you've never asked Christ to be your author and finisher, please do so today with a simple prayer, "Lord I give myself to you! Mold me and make me! Precious Lord take my hand!"  Amen!