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Date: November 4

Category: Follow God

Revelation 1:3
"Blessed (happy, to be envied) is the man who reads aloud [in the assembles] the word of this prophesy; and blessed (happy, to be envied) are those who hear [it read] and who keep themselves true to the things which are written in it [heeding them and laying them to heart], for the time [for them to be fulfilled] is near."

Slobodan & Ljiljana KrstevskiThis verse is found in the last book of the Bible. The word, "revelation" means that something was once hidden and now it has been revealed. In the first century, when this prophecy was written, it was written to a persecuted church, a church that had to flee and run away. In Rome, there are a lot of catacombs, which are big holes that the first century Christians dug so that they could live underground and protect themselves from persecution. When the Roman soldiers discovered these catacombs, they released poisonous snakes into the ground killing those Christians. So the soil of those catacombs is filled with the blood of many Christians who died for their faith. So in the Book of Revelation Christ reveals Himself to John, and through this prophecy, He encourages the Christians that one day all the wickedness in the world will come to an end.

In this verse we read today, it says that the people who read this prophecy aloud are pronounced blessed. But not only that, the people who hear this prophecy and keep themselves true to these words are also pronounced blessed. The word, "blessed" means to be endowed with greatness from on high. So if we want to experience that blessing, then we are to read the Word, listen to the Word, and do what the Word says. But how do we keep ourselves true to the things that are written in the Word? Well we do that by heeding them and laying them to heart. In other words, we are to expect that what the Word says will happen is going to happen.

The Book of Revelation reminds us of many themes found in the Book of Genesis. In Genesis we read about God creating the heavens and the earth. In Revelation we read about God recreating a new heaven and a new earth. In Genesis we read about the beginning of mankind, and in Revelation we read about the end of mankind. In more ways than one, those two books connect with each other. That means that all the books in between are connected as well. So the whole Bible from Genesis to Revelation is what we need to read, listen to, and obey in order to be blessed.

In Revelation 22:18-19 we read, "I [personally solemnly] warn everyone who listens to the statements of the prophecy [the predictions and the consolations and admonitions pertaining to them] in this book: "If anyone shall add anything to them, God will add and lay upon him the plagues (the afflictions and the calamities) that are recorded and described in this book. And if anyone cancels or takes away from the statements of the book of this prophecy [these predictions relating to Christ's kingdom and its speedy triumph, together with the consolations and admonitions or warnings pertaining to them], God will cancel and take away from him his share in the tree of life and in the city of holiness (purity and hallowedness) which are described and promised in this book."

In other words, we are to neither add to nor take away from anything that God says to us in His Word. That means that we are not to interpret the Scriptures according to how it suits our lifestyles and philosophies. Some people interpret the Scriptures a certain way to justify their sins. That is a great mistake. The Word of God is not to be interpreted based on our lifestyles. Our lifestyles should be determined and based on the Word of God. We are to embrace the Word of God in its fullness and allow it to shape and direct us in our lives.

Christ is the central figure of the Book of Revelation. From the beginning of this book to the end, Christ is the dominant figure. That's why it's important to focus our attention on Christ. The Word of God always points to Jesus – therefore we should listen to, obey and be more like Jesus. That obedience is what brings blessing upon our lives. You cannot mistreat the Word of God and expect to be blessed. So let us decide today that we will heed all that God says to us in His Word.

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