What does this passage mean to me?
In the Upper Room, John reclined with Jesus for His last Supper and leaned on Him to show his devotion and love (John 13:32). Now, he falls at his feet. Jesus shows John His love by helping him stand. The lesson for us is we must understand the importance of reverence. We come before a holy God. He is not just a pal or friend or guide -He is our Savior and our Lord (2 Cor. 5:16). He has the keys in His hand; we have no need to fear our future when He is our Light, Guide, and Lord!
The views simplified, as we go into the text more, additional information on these views will be drawn out.
The Preterist view sees this passage as meaning what will come about soon in their generation (as by 70AD) and has been fulfilled by the fall of Jerusalem and the destruction of the Temple, or the fall of Domitian, or the Roman Empire. They believe Christ has already come back in vengeance by destroying the Temple through the Romans. Partial Preterits believe He is still to come.
The Futurist view believes that John was literally carried into the future to see these events. They see this passage as being fulfilled at the end of the age, in the future just before the Second Coming.
The Idealist view sees this passage as symbolic with no specific reference to place or time, rather giving hope to the suffering and portraying that God is sovereign. They believe Christ is coming back continually and figuratively in judgment over history.
The Historicist view sees this passage as an enfolding fulfillment, as a template to the entire church age and many events to come that will be repeated until the Second Coming.
Questions to Ponder:
1. At this point, what would you say is the purpose of Revelation? Of the four main views on how to interpret Revelation, does any one of them appeal to you more than another?
2. How would you react if Christ appeared to you as He did with John in this passage? What can this attitude do to help you be more reverent to Christ in your daily life?
3. What is the image of Christ to you in this passage? How does this give you more information so you can have a better, healthier concept of who God is? How can this translate into your daily life?
4. What is your understanding of verse 19? Do you think it may set a tone for the meaning of Revelation? If so, how so?
5. What is the condition of your church? Does Jesus control your church or do you or others think they do? How is your light shining before others? Our Light is Christ and we are called to show Him in our lives and in our Church! How can you do this better?
© 1992-2009, R. J. Krejcir Ph.D. Into Thy Word Ministries http://www.intothyword.org