5 things you probably didn't know about the book of Revelation

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There's a high probability that most Christians today have not opened their Bibles to the book of Revelation or have read very little of it. Revelation is one of the least favorite books of the Bible because of its eschatological nature.

Yet no matter how much we shy away from Revelation, it is still a crucial key to understanding the redemptive work of God for all mankind, and while most of our ideas and concepts of the last book of the Bible may be true, there are also some things that not many Christians know that just may encourage us to open the last book more often.

It's not the only book that talks about the end times

Revelation is not the only part of the Bible that speaks of the end times nor is it the only part that talks of present darkness and destruction. In the gospel of Matthew, there is a lengthy recording of Jesus's explanation and exhortation on the second coming. The book of major and minor prophets were also at one point in history prophetic stories of things to come, and there is much more destruction and wrath in all of those books than Revelation.

However, there's a reason why it's important to read these parts as well -- because we need to know the seriousness and danger that lies behind the sinfulness of the world so that we may understand the gravity of God's forgiveness and redemption.

Some of the things in Revelation have already happened

The destruction of the temple and fall of Jerusalem are recorded in Revelation as things that have already passed and not allegories of a "spiritual Jerusalem" falling at the hands of sinners. This part of Revelation is crucial not only to Christians but to the Jewish culture as it is one of the very few written accounts of the fall of the nation's capital.

The book shows ONE revelation

Revelation is the story of one single revelation, and not a group of separate prophetic revelations. Sure, the mark of the beast, the antichrist and the tribulation are all part of the story, but none of those are the highlights of the Revelation nor of the Bible. The one true highlight throughout scripture was, is and will always be Jesus Christ.

The letter is written to seven churches that he pastors

When reading Revelation 1, one might think that John hated or was intensely mad at the churches of Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia and Laodicea because of all the judgment and warnings he spoke against them. This is far from true because John loved these churches so dearly because they were communities that he pastored.

Revelation was meant to encourage and not scare

John wrote Revelation not as a horror story that would scare people into believing that Jesus was real and is going to come back to toss unbelievers in a pit of fire, but as a letter of encouragement that would edify persecuted Christians, telling of the future glory that would come when Jesus returns.

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