“You know, you really shouldn't read Revelation. Seriously. It’s only going to frustrate and confuse you.”
Sound familiar? Ever had thoughts like that?
If you’re like many Christians, Revelation can seem like an insurmountable obstacle. It looms overhead like a foreboding mountain. Like it’s “in the clouds,” way above your spiritual pay grade.
So what are you supposed to do about this?
- Give up?
- Move on?
- Hit the Psalms for some quick refreshment?
- File Revelation under the “Forbidden Section” in Scripture’s library?
Fair questions. But we have to ask ourselves just why Revelation feels so “off limits” to us. I suspect it has a lot to do with the fact that this particular book of the Bible contains a lot of prophecy…and some pretty bizarre prophecy at that!
But like all biblical prophecy, at the time it was written, some of the details appeared hazy, only becoming more clear closer to their fulfillment. Like a faraway road sign, the nearer we get to prophecy, the more clearly we can see and understand it. And as our understanding grows, we know better how to respond and live.
Yes, Revelation can be thorny in spots. But make no mistake; you can get a handle on it. One reason for this is because God specifically wrote it to be “read, heard and heeded” (1:3). And God never expects us to obey unless we understand what He’s asking us to do.
Granted, all the details of prophecy may not come into high-resolution focus, but we can know enough to faithfully follow His commands. And why is all this so important? Because, God’s angel tells the apostle John “the time is near” (1:3).
The good news is that the last book God ever wrote also plays a strategic role in your relationship with Jesus, as well as your ability to understand the times and thrive in a culture that every day grows more hostile toward those who claim Jesus as Lord. More than ever, Revelation is a relevant book for our lives right now.
Even beyond providing us with a verbal panorama of the end times, this inspired book motivates the church to make herself ready for the imminent return of her Bridegroom. Like those believers living at the close of the first century, we too find ourselves in an age of challenging faith. We also face global instability and an uncertain future. So just how should Jesus’ Bride respond to all this? What are we to do?
The answer is found in the final pages of your Bible.
Ready to give Revelation a chance? Embrace its truths with Jeff Kinley in Wake the Bride.