Revelation 1:4–8 (ESV)
Greeting to the Seven Churches
4 John to the seven churches that
are in Asia:
Grace to you and peace from him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven spirits who are before his throne, 5 and from Jesus Christ the faithful witness, the firstborn of the
dead, and the ruler of kings on earth.
To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood 6 and made us a kingdom, priests to his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion forever and ever.
Amen. 7 Behold, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him, and all tribes of the earth will wail on account of him. Even so. Amen.
8 “I am the Alpha and the
Omega,” says the Lord God, “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.”
John greets the seven churches in Asia with a Trinitarian opening. You have the Father (him who
is and who was and who is to come), the son (Jesus Christ), and the Holy Spirit (the seven spirits who are before his throne). The Father’s unusual title is listed as the present, past, & future (divine eternal). The seven spirits is
probably a reference to fullness of the Spirit as found in Zech. 4:1-6 and Isa. 11:2 which shows a sevenfold description of the Holy Spirit as: 1) of the Lord, 2) of wisdom, 3) of understanding, 4) of counsel, 5) of power, 6) of knowledge, and 7) of fear of
the Lord. Jesus being called the firstborn of the dead is a reference to Jesus resurrection from the dead.
The next paragraph starts off with a strong gospel
statement: “To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood 6 and made us a kingdom, priests to his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.” Instead of focusing on what
we do for God (anthropocentric or man centered), we find the theology in the Bible to be focused on what God does for us (Christocentric or Christ centered). It is Jesus who loves us (when we didn’t even know he existed). It is Jesus who
freed us when we didn’t even know that we were held captive. He died on the cross for us (what role did you play??) and his blood sets you free. Jesus has made us a kingdom, priests to his God and Father. Did you ask Jesus to die for
your forgiveness of sins? No, this was done roughly 2,000 years ago, but He did die for your forgiveness.
The next verse states: “7 Behold, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him,
even those who pierced him, and all tribes of the earth will wail on account of him. Even so. Amen.” This is a reference to the Second Coming on the Last Day as stated in Luke 21:27–28 (ESV) "27
And then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. 28 Now when these things begin to take place, straighten up and raise your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.” This will be a joyous day for the
believers and a sickening day for the unbelievers. This also reminds me that every knee shall bow, and every tongue confess, that Jesus Christ is Lord. I like to throw in that even Satan will be bowing and confessing that Jesus is Lord. It
will be a sad day for Satan and his followers, but the victory was not won on this day, but on the Cross. The closing verse is 8 “I am the Alpha and the Omega, says the Lord God, “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.”
The Greek alphabet begins with alpha and ends with omega. Thus Jesus says the beginning and the end in verse Rev. 22:13. There is a lot to write about for this verse, but maybe some other day. I pray: Lord, thank you for such a clear
Gospel message found in the beginning of Revelation. Help me to see you working in me and I look forward to seeing you face to face. Help me to endure until the end. Amen.