Time of Tribulation

Seven-sealed Scroll

God, the Father, gave Jesus Christ information about "things which must soon take place" (Rev 1:1) which constitutes a revelation because it is not something which has been heretofor shared. They are "the words of the prophecy" (:3) "which God gave Him to show to His bond-servants" (:1). Since Christ told John, "'Write in a book what you see'" (:11) we are to "heed the things which are written in it" (:3). When Christ received the revelation "He sent and communicated it by His angel to His bond-servant John" (:1) who said "I heard behind me a loud voice" (:10). When he looked behind him he saw "one like a son of man" (:13) and then "fell at His feet like a dead man" (:17). The personage replied, "'I am the first and the last, and the living One'" (:17-18). He had said, "'I am the Alpha and the Omega . . . who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty'" (:8). Since the voice John heard was the ascended and glorified Christ and it was spoken "by His angel" (:1) then it is his one-and-the-same supernatural, spiritual presence. That doesn't mean that an unbeliever can't read it, but does it mean that that person will understand that "every eye will see Him . . . and all the tribes of the earth will mourn over Him"? (:7).

The scene is around God's heavenly throne where the elders say, "'Worthy are You . . . for You created all things, and because of Your will they existed, and were created'" (Rev 4:11). Then John saw "in the right hand of Him who sat on the throne a scroll written in the inside and on the back, sealed up with seven seals" (5:1). After the Lamb took the book they said, "'Worthy are You to take the book and to break its seals, for you were slain, and purchased [men] for God with Your blood'" (:9). It was "the church of God which He purchased with His own blood" (Ac 20:28). After Pentecost "the Lord was adding to their number day by day those who were being saved" (2:47). He "gave Himself for us to redeem us from every lawless deed, and to purify for Himself a people for His own possession (Titus 2:14). The starting point for all this is that "the earth is the Lord's, and all it contains, the world, and those who dwell in it" (Ps 24:1). God explained to the Israelites that, "'The land, moreover, shall not be sold permanently, for the land is mine; for you are but aliens and sojourners with Me. Thus for every piece of your property, you are to provide for the redemption of the land'" (Lev 25:23-24). Boaz' close relative told him, "'You may have my right of redemption'" (Ruth 3:6) and therefore Boaz told the elders, "'You are witnesses today that I have bought'" the land (:9). "'Moreover, I have acquired Ruth the Moabitess'" (:10) who became part of the genealogy of Jesus Christ. Consequently Christ paid the ransom for us "having obtained eternal redemption" (Heb 9:12) making him "the mediator of a new covenant . . . since a death has taken place for the redemption of the transgressions" (:15). "A covenant is valid only when men are dead" (:17).