An Overview Of The Book Of Revelation

Writer Of The Book Of Revelation

Four times the writer identified himself as “John” (cf. Revelation 1:1,4,9; 22:8).

Tradition upholds that this “John” was the apostle John, the beloved disciple of Jesus. Irenaeus, bishop of Lyons, who lived until around A.D. 180, provided important testimony to John's authorship of Revelation. He stated that men who saw John face to face certified the text of Revelation 13:18. In his own writings he repeatedly quoted from Revelation, which he accepted as Scripture. Justin, who taught in Ephesus after his conversion around A.D. 130, is quoted by Everett F. Harrison in his book Introduction to the New Testament, page 455, as having stated, “A certain man among us, whose name was John, one of the apostles of Christ, prophesied in a revelation made to him, that those who believed in our Christ would spend a thousand years in Jerusalem.” An early reference to Revelation as being Scripture is found in the Letter of the Churches of Lyons and Vienne in Gaul, which was written to churches in the region of Asia Minor. The letter speaks of the persecution of the Christians in their areas fulfilling the Scripture, and then quotes Revelation 22:11. The Canon of Muratori, thought to have originally been written in or near Rome around A.D. 200, includes John's Revelation. Tertullian, the first great writer of Latin Christianity, who lived from around A.D. 150 to 225, also quoted from Revelation and maintained that it was written by the apostle John. Hippolytus early in the third century accepted Revelation as Scripture and John as its author. Clement and Origen of Alexandria also received Revelation as Scripture and the work of the apostle John. Athanasius in the fourth century, knowing the respect held for the Book of Revelation in the churches, also supported the inclusion of Revelation in the canon as Scripture.

In spite of this strong support for John's authorship of the Book of Revelation as Scripture, it was not accepted universally but was spoken against by some. Marcion did not include it in his canon, nor the gospel and letters of John. Some, such as the sect known as the Alogi, did not accept the Book of Revelation for doctrinal, not historical, reasons. They stood opposed to Montanism in the second century, which claimed special prophetic gifts and supported its teaching on the basis of the Book of Revelation. Dionysius in opposition to millennial views denied John's authorship and attributed the Book of Revelation to another John whose tomb was in Ephesus. Eusebius, who also opposed millennialism, assigned the Book of Revelation to the second John known as the “Elder”.

Recipients Of The Book Of Revelation

The Book of Revelation is actually a letter. It contains an opening address and greeting characteristic of the epistles in the New Testament (cf. Revelation 1:4) as well as a closing benediction (cf. Revelation 22:21). The book is a revelatory letter from God the Father, given through Jesus Christ by means of an angel to John for “the seven churches that are in Asia” (cf. Revelation 1:1,4)

The seven churches who received the letter are listed in Revelation 1:11: Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea. The churches were located in what is now the country of Turkey. They are listed in an order one would follow on a circuit of visitations as he followed the circular road that bound the most populous, wealthy, and influential cities in the western area of Asia Minor. From these major centers the letter could be shared with the other churches.

Date And Place The Book Of Revelation Was Written

Revelation 1:9 states the book was written on the island of Patmos, where John was exiled because of his teaching the Word of God and his testifying to Jesus. Patmos was an island about 10 miles long and 6 miles wide, which was located southwest of Ephesus and due west of Miletus. The Romans used the island as a place to banish individuals as punishment for some crime against Rome.

A statement of Irenaeus helps to date the writing of the book. He stated it was written not very long before, nearly in his own generation, at the close of the reign of Domitian. This time of writing is substantiated by Victorinus, who was bishop of what is now Pettau, which is located 128 miles south of Vienna, and who was martyred about A.D. 304. Everett F. Harrison quoted Victorinus on page 473 of his book as stating: “When John said these things, he was in the island of Patmos, condemned to the mines by Caesar Domitian. There he saw the Apocalypse; and when at length grown old, he thought that he should receive his release by suffering; but Domitian being killed, he was liberated.”

The reign of Emperor Domitian was A.D. 81 to 96. Based on Irenaeus' statement about the close of the reign of Domitian, the probable date of writing was A.D. 95 or 96. Such a date harmonizes with the conditions known at the time. During the reign of Domitian, who is said to have been the first Roman emperor to make an issue of emperor worship, the worship of the emperor was promoted in the province of Asia (Minor). Domitian coveted being addressed as “Lord and God”. Such veneration of the emperor was made a test of one's loyalty to the Roman Empire. Refusal to do so was considered an act of treason punishable by death. Christians who believed and confessed only one man was Lord and God, Jesus Christ, and refused to participate in the emperor worship, became guilty of a crime against the state. John's banishment to Patmos “because of the word of God and the testimony of Jesus” fits the conditions in Ephesus and Asia Minor at the close of the reign of Domitian. John's mentioning in Revelation 2:13 the martyrdom of Anitpas at Pergamum in Asia Minor, and his reference in Revelation 6:9 to the souls of the martyrs under the altar who were slain because of the word of God and the testimony they maintained, also fits the conditions at the time of A.D. 95 to 96.

A date of A.D. 95 to 96 allows for a considerable passage of years from the time of Paul's first and third missionary journeys in Asia Minor, around A.D. 46 to 48 and A.D. 53 to 57, when he founded the churches there, to the time John wrote the Book of Revelation. That 50 year interval allows for the decline of the churches John wrote to from the day of their founding by Paul. The church of Ephesus had forsaken its first love (cf. Revelation 2:4,5). The church of Sardis had become spiritually dead (cf. Revelation 3:1). The church of Laodicea had become lukewarm (cf. Revelation 3:15,16).

According to Revelation 3:17 the members of the church of Laodicea were wealthy and prosperous. This would indicate the city of Laodicea was enjoying prosperity. The city had been destroyed by an earthquake in A.D. 62. A date for the writing of the Book of Revelation in A.D. 95 to 96 allows sufficient time for the city to have been rebuilt and to regain its prosperity.

Occasion Of The Book Of Revelation

God's reason for giving this revelatory letter to John for the seven churches is suggested by the contents of the letter. The devil was attacking the churches from within and without (cf. Revelation 2:9,13; 3:9). The churches were being disturbed by false teachers (cf. Revelation 2:6,14 &15,20). They were being persecuted and slandered by the Jews and civil authorities, which had already brought about the banishment of John and the martyrdom of some of the faithful Christians (cf. Revelation 1:9; 2:9 & 10,13; 3:9; 6:9,10). Some of the churches had also declined spiritually and needed to be called to repentance, while others of them had in their midst members who had embraced false teachings which needed to be purged from the congregations (cf. Revelation 2:4 & 5, 14 & 15, 20-25; 3:1-3, 15-19).

Purpose Of The Book Of Revelation

The purpose of this revelatory letter is also suggested by the contents of the letter. Its intent was to strengthen and encourage the Christians so they could endure the tribulations they were suffering, to call them to repentance and a spiritual renewal, to admonish and exhort them to a faithfulness to the true Word and its teachings, and to assure them of the certain hope of victory that was theirs in Christ over their adversaries and all evil.

Dr. Siegbert W. Becker in his commentary on Revelation suggested that the book could be seen as a commentary on Acts 14:22 and Matthew 16:18: “We must go through many hardships to enter the kingdom of God...and the gates of Hades will not overcome (the church).”

Characteristics Of The Book Of Revelation

1. It is an apocalyptic writing. The book's title is the opening words of Revelation 1:1, “The Revelation.” The Greek word for “revelation” is carried over into our English as “The Apocalypse”. The name “apocalypse” has been given to a type of literature also found in the Old Testament, particularly in the Books of Daniel and Ezekiel. Dr. Becker defined apocalyptic writing as en effort to portray the future by means of strange and even fantastic symbolism.

Martin H. Franzmann noted in his book The Word of the Lord Grows that the strange, fantastic symbolism of the Revelation that puzzles us today was familiar to the apostle John's original readers. They had become familiar with the strange imagery of apocalyptic writing from such books in the Old Testament as Daniel and Ezekiel, as well as from the apocryphal writings of the intertestamental age--the books of Enoch, Jubilees, Esdras, and the Assumption of Moses. The apocalyptic writings saw history on the basis of the visions of the writers and were particularly interested in eschatology, that is the end of this world's history and the ushering in of the new age and world to come. It used pictures, allegories, symbols, numbers, colors, and stars to which a significant meaning was attached.

Apocalyptic writing drew from the Old Testament. The Book of Revelation did even more so. Franzmann has stated that no other book of the New Testament can compare to the number of allusions to the Old Testament found in Revelation. They number in the hundreds. Professor Joel Gerlach has said in his Introduction and Survey of the New Testament that Revelation contains at least 300 allusions to the Old Testament. Everett F. Harrison states that scholar H. B. Swete had calculated Revelation contains 278 references to the Jewish Scriptures.

2. Revelation stands out for its eschatological emphasis above all other books of the Bible. Other books of the Old and New Testaments include passages and sections on the end times. But none are so concentrated, sustained, and comprehensive in their treatment of the end times as Revelation.

3. Revelation is free in its use of symbolism. Lampstands are churches and stars are their angels. Jesus is the son of man, the Root of David, a lamb, a lion, a riding conqueror on a white horse, a mighty angel robed in a cloud with a rainbow above his head. The devil is a great red dragon, an old serpent, and the angel of the bottomless pit.

4. Revelation sets forth the awesome majesty, holiness, and power of the just God and Jesus Christ, who bring punishment on their evil enemies and who are worthy of the honor and praise of saints and angels.

5. Revelation makes prolific use of numbers and particular numbers of word groupings.

It makes use of the triadic arrangement of phrases and words for the three persons of the Godhead, such as is found in Revelation 1:4,5. It uses quadruplet words to refer to the people of this world, such as found in Revelation 5:9, 7:9. Three is the symbolic number for the Triune God. Four is the symbolic number for the world, which has its four corners or points of the compass (cf. Revelation 7:1; 20:8).

Seven recurs repeatedly in Revelation--the seven lampstands, seven stars, seven churches, seven angels, seven seals, seven trumpets, the seven visions, the seven last plagues and bowls of wrath. Seven (being the sum of three, which is the symbolic number for God, plus four, which is the symbolic number for the earth) is the symbolical number for God's covenant of grace with the world.

Twelve, the multiple of three times four, is the symbolical number for God's church. Twelve was the number of the tribes of Israel and the number of the apostles. Revelation makes use of multiples of twelve--the 24 elders around the throne and the 144,000 who were sealed on the foreheads as the servants of God.

Ten is the symbolic number for completeness, as in the ten days of persecution in Smyrna (cf. Revelation 2:10). Its cube of 1,000 is the symbolic number for the completeness of time to the end of this world's history (cf. Revelation 20:3,4,7).

The 144,000 mentioned in Revelation 7, which is the product of 12 x 12 x 10 x 10 x 10, is the symbolic number for the church of Christ in its totality.

In Revelation 13:18 the number 666 appears. This number is said to be the calculated number of the beast. The calculation of names is known as gematria. In ancient times each letter of the Greek alphabet was assigned a numerical value. The value of each letter in the name was calculated to come up with its total value. Many have attempted to calculate the name of a person that totals 666. Irenaeus stated the safest thing to do was wait to see the fulfillment, since such calculations were uncertain at best. He himself, however, suggested the Greek name “Lateinos”, which means “Latin”. This suggestion had some merit, because at the time the anti-christian power which was persecuting the church was Rome, the center of the Latin world. Whose ever name 666 is the calculation of, he is a great enemy of the church on earth.

The Interpretation Of The Book Of Revelation

Scholars, like Dr. Siegbert Becker, Martin Franzmann, and Everett F. Harrison, have noted four different types of interpretation: the preterist, historicist, futurist, and idealist.

The preterist interpreters assert that the mass of material must be understood as pertaining to the time during which the book was written. The author John is understood to be describing the impending struggle between the church and the Roman Empire. Harrison stated the strength of this approach is that it makes Revelation “immediately and thoroughly relevant to the life and struggle of the early church.” Dr. Becker describes this method of interpretation as the method of unbelieving critical scholars, who view the Revelation as nothing more than a portrayal of John's own time, of the recent past, and shrewd guesses about the future. The preterist interpreters consider the apocalyptic writings to have been attacks on the governing authorities of that ancient age, veiled in fantastic symbolism to prevent those officials from recognizing that what was stated was about them. The preterist interpreters also believe the writers of apocalyptic literature, like the Revelation, used the names of great men, such as John's name, to conceal their own identity. This method of interpretation denies the prophetic character of Revelation and rejects the truth that the book is the Word of God given to the glorified Jesus Christ and communicated to the apostle John. This method must be rejected by all who take Revelation at face value and believe it is the inspired, inerrant Word of God that states it speaks of future things that must come to pass (cf. Revelation 1:1,19; 4:1; 22:6).

The historicist interpreters seek to identify what is written in Revelation with events, movements, and persons in church history. This method is highly subjective and must be considered as pure guesswork. It makes one doubt whether the interpretation is really true, for one cannot be absolutely certain about such interpretations. How does one know that the event or person identified is not in fact something or someone else?

The futuristic interpreters see the events described in Revelation as still lying in the future to be fulfilled in the final days of this world's history. These interpreters maintain that Revelation foretells a literal seven years of great tribulation, the rapture, and the millennial reign of Christ on earth, which are rejected for being unscriptural teachings.

The idealist interpreters see the symbols of Revelation as broad outlines and portrayals that apply to every age of the church. This method does not limit the symbols and pictures to one time, one event, and to one personage, as the historicists do. It sees them as applying to every person and event of that type. For example, the rider on the red horse is not one specific war but every war that has brought and does bring trouble to the people. The angels of the seven trumpets are not one false prophet and heretic, but they symbolize every false prophet and heretic who has troubled the church.

The idealistic method of interpretation has several advantages:

First, it enables reading the Book of Revelation as a clear book. The broad outlines and basic teachings are generally clear.

Second, it enables reading the Book of Revelation literally, like the rest of the Scriptures, according to the type of literature the text is. The text itself identifies whether it is historical narrative or apocalyptic symbolism. Revelation 1:9,10 is read literally as historical narrative and fact. Revelation 1:11,12 is read literally as what John heard and then saw in a vision. Revelation 1:12,16 is read literally as an apocalyptic vision of seven golden lampstands and seven stars, which were symbols for something else. This prevents reading Revelation literalistically. Because Jesus is a Lamb in one verse does not mean he cannot be a Lion, the son of man, and a riding conqueror on a white horse in other verses. In reading Revelation literally we are as free to understand the symbols as the visions were in using them. Thus forty-two months, a thousand years, a time, time and a time and a half can all represent the same period of history.

Third, in the idealistic method of interpretation Scripture interprets Scripture. One verse may explain the meaning of a symbol in another verse (cf. Revelation 1:12,16,20). The immediate context may make the meaning of the symbol clear, as Revelation 1:18 clarifies who is the one described in 1:12-16. The whole context of Revelation may clarify the meaning of a symbol, as the great red dragon's being overcome by the blood of the Lamb and the testimony of God's people in Revelation 12 clarifies that the chain binding Satan in Revelation 20 is the everlasting gospel. Other times the greater context of Scripture clarifies the meaning of a symbol, as Hebrews 4:12 clarifies what is coming out of Christ's mouth in Revelation 1:16, and John 1:29 clarifies who the Lamb of Revelation 7:9 is.

Content Of The Book Of Revelation

In fantastic visions and symbolism the whole history of the Christian church is seen in its struggle to preach and maintain the gospel of Christ amid persecutions and tribulations, over which it gains the victory time and again.

Theme Of The Book Of Revelation

A Revelation Of What Must Take Place As The Church Goes Through Great Tribulations To Its Triumph In Heaven, (cf. Revelation 1:1,19; 4:1; 22:6: 7:9-17; 17:1-22:5)

Outline Of The Book Of Revelation

Part 1: Introduction, Revelation 1:1-20

A. The title: The Revelation, Apocalypse, Revelation 1:1-3

B. Address: John, to the seven churches in the province of Asia, Revelation 1:4a

C. Greeting, Revelation 1:4b,5a

D. Doxology: Hymn of Praise, Revelation 1:5b,6

E. The first prophecy of the Book of Revelation, Jesus Christ is coming, Revelation 1:7

F. Jesus' threefold identification of himself, Revelation 1:8

G. John's vision of the glorified Jesus Christ while on the island of Patmos, Revelation 1:9-20

Part 2: The First Vision Of The Seven Letters To The Seven Churches, Revelation 2:1-3:22

A. To the church in Ephesus, Revelation 2:1-7

B. To the church in Smyrna, Revelation 2:8-11

C. To the church in Pergamum, Revelation 2:12-17

D. To the church in Thyatira, Revelation 2:18-29

E. To the church in Sardis, Revelation 3:1-6

F. To the church in Philadelphia, Revelation 3:7-13

G. To the church in Laodicea, Revelation 3:14-22

Part 3: The Second Vision Of The Seven Seals, Revelation 4:1-8:5

A. The Vision of God in Heaven, Revelation 4:1-11

B. The Vision of Who is Worthy to Open the Scroll, Revelation 5:1-14

Jesus, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, and the Lamb who is worshipped by the saints and angels

C. The Vision of the Opening of the Seven Seals, which depict the signs of Jesus' coming up to the end of time, Revelation 6:1-8:5

1. The opening of the first seal reveals Jesus going out like a conqueror on a white horse with the everlasting gospel to win over the nations, Revelation 6:1,2

2. The opening of the second seal reveals the coming of war as a rider on a red horse to take away peace that men should slay each another, Revelation 6:3,4

3. The opening of the third seal reveals the coming of famine as a rider on a black horse, Revelation 6:5,6

4. The opening of the fourth seal reveals the coming of Death and Hades to kill and destroy with famine, pestilence, and wild beasts, Revelation 6:7,8

5. The opening of the fifth seal reveals the souls of the martyrs in heaven, who must wait for God to avenge them until all who will die in persecutions of the church will be killed, Revelation 6:9-11

6. The opening of the sixth seal reveals:

a. The coming of the destruction of the heavens and the earth and the judgment of God and the Lamb Jesus Christ, Revelation 6:12-17

b. The delay of the destruction of the earth until the 144,000, a figurative number for the complete number of the Christian elect, have been sealed with the Spirit for their salvation, Revelation 7:1-8

c. The Vision of the Christian Saints in Triumph in Heaven, Revelation 7:9-17

7. The opening of the seventh seal reveals the beginning of the Vision of the Seven Trumpets, Revelation 8:1-5

Part 4: The Third Vision Of The Vision Of The Seven Trumpets, Revelation 8:6-11:19

A. The subject of the Vision of the Seven Trumpets:

1. Since the vision of the opening of the seventh seal introduces the Vision of the Seven Trumpets, and since the Vision of the Seven Seals and the Vision of the Seven Trumpets conclude with the destruction of the world, the two visions cover the same period of this world's history, namely the entire New Testament era. Both visions are then related to the signs pointing to the coming of the end.

2. The Vision of the Seven Trumpets covers the signs not covered by the Vision of the Seven Seals. Those signs are the rise of false Christs and prophets with their false teachings and religions, the apostasy or falling away from the true gospel and church of Christ, and the love of many growing cold as wickedness increases. These signs reveal a coming deterioration of the church on earth.

3. The rise of false teachers and heresies that lead people from the truth has been historically the biblical interpretation of the Vision of the Seven Trum

B. The Vision of the First Four Trumpet Blasts usher in plagues that bring great misery upon mankind, just as false teachings that destroy the truth afflict men's souls and bodies, which results in their misery and death, Revelation 8:6-13

C. The Vision of the Fifth Trumpet Blast permits the devil to bring up from the depths of hell plagues of false teachings to torment the people of the world who are not numbered among God's elect, Revelation 9:1-12

D. The Vision of the Sixth Trumpet Blast:

1. Releases a stupendous plague of millions of mankind's own false teachings and philosophies, which show the devil's true colors and are for the destruction of the multitudes, Revelation 9:13-19

2. Unveils the Vision of Continued Impenitence, in which the remaining people of the world still refuse to repent of their idolatries and evil deeds, Revelation 9:20,21

3. Unveils the Vision of the Angel with the Little Scroll. This vision portrays that amid the plagues of false teachings the glorified Christ will have the sweetness of his gospel preached to the nations, which brings the bitterness of hatred and persecution to the one who proclaims it, Revelation 10:1-11

4. Unveils the Vision of the Church within the Church, Revelation 11:1-14

a. Much of the visible church on earth lies outside the boundaries of God's true church of believers. That visible church has been given to the unbelieving nations, who are corrupted by the false teachings and persecute God's true church of believers throughout the New Testament era, Revelation 11:1,2

b. Within God's true church he has a few faithful witnesses to proclaim his Word throughout the New Testament era until they have finished. The devil then rises up to kill them to the joy of the world. But God raises them from the dead to give them the victory in heaven, Revelation 11:3-14

E. The Vision of the Seventh Trumpet Blast announces the victory of God and Christ Jesus with the coming of the end and the day of judgment and reward, Revelation 11:15-19

Part 5: The Fourth Vision Of The Vision Of The Seven Visions, Revelation 12:1-15:8

A. The First Vision of the Great Red Dragon, Revelation 12:1-17

1. The great red dragon tries to devour the woman's child, namely Christ who descended from God's Old Testament church, Revelation 12:1-6

2. In the war in heaven the great red dragon was defeated and cast out of heaven in connection with the victory that Christ gave his believers by his redeeming blood. By his blood and their confession of faith in Christ the believers overcome the devil's accusations against them, Revelation 12:7-12

3. The great red dragon persecutes the woman, the true church of God, and her offspring, the believers to whom the church has given birth, Revelation 12:13-17

B. The Second Vision of the Beast from the Sea, secular government that blasphemes God, wages war against his church of believers, and is idolized by the people of the world, Revelation 13:1-10

C. The Third Vision of the Beast of the Earth, the Antichrist and all false teachers within the fallen, apostate church. The beast speaks like the devil, gives its support to the beast of secular government, and deceives the nations, Revelation 13:11-18

D. The Fourth Vision of the Lamb and the 144,000 comforts God's believers amid the persecutions they suffer with the assurance of their final victory in heaven with Christ, Revelation 14:1-5

E. The Fifth Vision of the Three Angels, Revelation 14:6-13

1. The first angel preaches the everlasting gospel to all the nations on earth, Revelation 14:6,7

2. The second angel announces the fall of Babylon, the enemies of the church, which has lead the nations into spiritual unfaithfulness to God, Revelation 14:8

3. The third angel announces God's wrath that falls on all who idolize the beast of secular government, which persecutes God's church. This knowledge gives the believers the strength to endure their tribulations, as does the knowledge that their dying in the faith gives them a blessed deliverance from all that troubles them on earth, Revelation 14:9-13

F. The Sixth Vision of the Harvest, Revelation 14:14-20

1. On judgment day the believers are harvested from the earth for eternal life, Revelation 14:14-16

2. On judgment day the wicked unbelievers are harvested to be trodden in the winepress of God's wrath, Revelation 14:17-20

G. The Seventh Vision of the Seven Angels with the Seven Last Plagues of God's Wrath, Revelation 15:1-8

Part 6: The Fifth Vision Of The Seven Last Plagues, Revelation 16:1-21

A. A comparison of each of the seven last plagues to each of the seven trumpets shows that the two visions are the same. The repetition signifies the matter has been firmly decided by God, who will surely in short time bring it to pass (cf. Genesis 41:32).

B. False doctrines are a plague on mankind, which the devil first unleashed in Eden. Since then the devil has been engaged in a great battle with God for the control of the hearts and minds of mankind--the devil's lies verses God's Word of truth.

C. The Vision of the Seven Last Plagues reveals what to expect in the last days leading up to the end. This vision of false doctrines emphasizes the great tribulation unequaled in history that Jesus spoke of in Matthew 24:21-25, which could cause the downfall of even the elect if those days were not cut short.

D. The Visions of the First Five Bowls of God's Wrath, Revelation 16:1-11

E. The Vision of the Sixth Bowl of God's Wrath reveals the spirits of demons coming from the mouths of the great red dragon, the beast of secular government, and the false prophets who are the beast of the earth and the antichrist. They amass their forces for the final assault and destruction of God's true church on the day that happens to be the great day of God Almighty, when he comes suddenly to destroy the world and to give his church the final victory, Revelation 16:12-16

F. The Vision of the Seventh Bowl of God's Wrath reveals the destruction of the world on the day of judgment, when God destroys his enemies whose final word is to curse him, Revelation 16:17-21

Part 7: The Sixth Vision Of The Victory Over Antichrist, Revelation 17:1-19:21

A. The Vision of the Great Harlot on the beast reveals the fallen, apostate, visible church sitting on the beast of the sea, the secular government, to further its own purposes of persecuting God's true church and opposing Christ, Revelation 17:1-18

B. The Vision of the Fall of Babylon reveals the destruction and final judgment of the spiritual antichrist and fallen, apostate, visible church, Revelation 18:1-24

C. The Vision of the Church's Victory reveals the true church praising God for his judgment of the Great Harlot, the apostate church, and rejoicing in its salvation. Its great enemy the beast of the sea, secular government, is at last destroyed by Christ, Revelation 19:1-21

Part 8: The Seventh Vision Of The Church's Final Victory, Revelation 20:1-22:5

A. The Vision of Christ and Satan reveals Christ binding Satan with his everlasting gospel and taking away Satan's freedom to deceive the nations throughout the New Testament era of history, which is seen as a thousand years, Revelation 20:1-3

B. The Vision of the One Thousand Years reveals the saints, who participated in the first spiritual resurrection of the soul to faith, reigning with Christ for the thousand years of the New Testament era with no need to fear the second death of condemnation. The rest who were spiritually dead did not so live to the end of the world's history, Revelation 20:4-6

C. The Vision of Satan's Defeat, Revelation 20:7-10

D. The Vision of the Final Judgment, Revelation 20:11-15

E. The Vision of the Church in the New Heaven And Earth, Revelation 21:1-8

F. The Vision of the Church as the Glorious New Jerusalem, Revelation 21:9-27

G. The Vision of Paradise Restored, Revelation 22:1-5

Part 9: The Conclusion, Revelation 22:6-21

A. Jesus' promise to come soon, Revelation 22:6,7

B. The instruction given to John about the Book of Revelation, Revelation 22:8-11

C. Jesus repeats his promise to come soon, Revelation 22:12-15

D. Jesus testifies his angel delivered the contents of the Book of Revelation for the churches, Revelation 22:16

E. The church invites Jesus to come, Revelation 22:17

F. Jesus' parting warning and promise, Revelation 22:18-20a

G. John's closing invitation for Jesus to come and John's benediction to the churches, Revelation 22:20a,21