THE BEGINNING & THE END / GENESIS AND REVELATION
In my opinion Revelation is the book that is most relevant to our generation and time – the Laodicean age. There is so much to learn from the book of Revelation. The more you dig, the more you find. The greater your understanding of the book, the greater your understanding of what the future will be.
Satan hates this book for that reason, because it interferes with his plans for the end times. Revelation tells us of a true one-world government and all the horrible things that are going to (take place) come from that. This will be during the seven years of tribulation when God’s wrath will be poured out on the unbelieving inhabitants on earth. We, the church (Christ’s body of believers), will meet the Lord in the air and be taken to our heavenly home in what is known as the Rapture. Sometime after the rapture the Antichrist will be revealed and the start of the seven-year tribulation will begin when the Antichrist signs a peace treaty with Israel. Revelation says that this period will be the only time that Satan will ever have full control and rule. Many believers will come out of this period as a result of the witnessing of 144,000 Jewish evangelists, but many will most likely die for their faith (Tribulation Saints). It will be complete totalitarian rule by the world dictator, the Antichrist.
It would benefit Satan greatly to keep you from reading Revelation. In my honest opinion, that is exactly why there has been so much controversy with the book of Revelation. When Satan is trying so hard to hide what was revealed in Revelation, you have to ask yourself what is in there that he doesn’t want you to know. Is it perhaps why Revelation says that you will be blessed for reading and hearing the words of this prophecy (Rev.1:3)?
The book of Revelation is the most prophetic book of the Bible. Except for the first chapter, the entire book is about things that are to come after Jesus Christ died for us. The “Revelation of Jesus Christ (1:1),” is the necessary culmination of the Bible. Tells us how everything is going to come out – the end of the world as we know it.
GENESIS & REVELATION: THE BOOKENDS OF THE BIBLE
Just as Genesis explains the beginning of the world, Revelation explains the end of the world. Revelation is the book of consummation. Subjects that were introduced in the first book (Genesis) are brought to fruition in this the last book (Revelation). Please note the following:
(1) Genesis: Creation of heaven and earth (1:1).
Revelation: Destruction of heaven and earth. Creation of new heaven and new earth (20:11b; 21:1).
(2) Genesis: Start of Satan’s reign on earth (3:1-7).
Revelation: End of Satan’s reign on earth. Satan cast into the Lake of Fire (20:10).
(3) Genesis: Entrance of sin (3:1-7).
Revelation: Sin banished (21:27).
(4) Genesis: Pronouncement of the curse on creation (3:17-19).
Revelation: The curse removed (22:3).
(5) Genesis: Right to tree of life forfeited (3:24b).
Revelation: Access to tree of life restored (22:2).
(6) Genesis: Eviction of man from the Garden of Eden (3:24b). (Paradise lost)
Revelation: Man welcomed back to Paradise (22:1-5). (Paradise Restored)
(7) Genesis: Entrance of death into the world (2:17; 5:5).
Revelation: Death forever removed (21:4).
(8) Genesis: Marriage of the first Adam (4:1).
Revelation: Marriage of the last Adam (19:7).
(9) Genesis: Sorrow comes to mankind (3:16).
Revelation: Sorrow eliminated (21:4).
(10) Genesis: The sun and moon to rule the day and night (1:16).
Revelation: Sun and moon are no more – God’s glory is the light (21:23).
(11) Genesis: Babylon built (10:10; 11:1-4). Man’s first attempt at one world government.
Revelation: Babylon destroyed (Revelation ch.14, 17, 18). Man’s last attempt at one world government.
(12) Genesis: God walking with His people, face-to-face (3:8).
Revelation: God again dwelling with His people, face-to-face (21:3).
CIRCLE OF LOVE
Most people may not think very much about the book of Revelation while reading the book of Genesis, or vice versa, but something grand and wonderful is revealed with the bookend chapters of the Bible in the first two chapters of Genesis and in the last two chapters of Revelation.
There are many parallels that we can focus on regarding these two chapters of Genesis and Revelation but what stands out for me is fellowship or relationship with God.
The biblical narrative begins with God dwelling with His creation – mankind. They are in the garden of Eden, and everything is in a right relationship, everything is in harmony. The whole focus in those two chapters has to be God dwelling with His people. The creation of man began with a relationship with God before sin entered the picture in chapter 3 of Genesis. Then in Revelation 22 it ended again with man in a relationship with God after sin has been banished. Can you see the similarities? In the new creation in the book of Revelation the fall of humanity in Genesis 3 is overturned and God’s people and place are back in a right relationship with Him. The created order is back in harmony again. The biblical narrative begins and ends with the same basic picture going full circle.
The beginning and the end of the Bible is all about God’s presence. In the garden of Eden, Adam and Eve enjoyed God’s presence and similarly we will enjoy God’s presence in the New Heaven and the New Earth. This is the circle of love. Man’s personal relationship with God that he had in the first two chapters of Genesis is restored again in the last two chapters of Revelation.
The Bible says that God is love (1 Jn. 4:8, 16). People need to understand that according to Scripture God did not create us to start a religious following. As God, He needs nothing. He did not create us to be His servants as God has all the angels in heaven to look after and administer to all His needs. Scripture clearly tells us that God created man for His pleasure, for His fellowship, so we can have an intimate relationship with God – it’s called love (1 Cor. 1:9). God created you and loves you so much that He wants you to get to know Him and to spend eternity with Him in fellowship. It has always been about a personal relationship and not a religion. This is what is evident in the first two chapters of Genesis and what we see at the end of Revelation in the last two chapters. It all boils down to a personal relationship with our Creator. It’s love going full circle. God in our presence. God dwelling with His people once again in full harmony and in a right relationship, for all eternity in the New Heaven and the New Earth.
As believers, knowing all of this should draw a loving response from us. We should long for the day when Jesus returns to bring all things back into a right relationship. And while we are here in this broken world, we should so long for that right relationship with God that we live out the two greatest commandments – love for God and love for others. Jesus said, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets (Matthew 22:37-40).”
A VERY BRIEF OUTLINE
The history of the Bible is the record of a mighty conflict between two forces. The forces of righteousness and the forces of evil or between God and Satan. The beginning of the conflict as recorded in Genesis 3:15 and the final outcome as set forth in the book of Revelation. In chapter 1 of Revelation, it speaks of the final Victor, the Lord Jesus Christ. In chapters 2 and 3 we trace the history of the Church from Pentecost to the Rapture. The first half of the Tribulation period is portrayed in chapters 4 to 8. The last half known as the Great Tribulation is described in chapters 9 through 11 and chapters 16 through 19. In chapters 12 through 15 we see war on earth and war in heaven, introduction to the beast and his prophet, and the prelude to the bowl judgements. The bowls constitute the period of God’s wrath or as the prophets would say, “the Day of the Lord.”
The Revelation, the concluding book of the Scripture, unfolds the great event bringing history to consummation, including the revelation of Jesus Christ at His Second Advent. The word “revelation,” used as the title of the book, is from the Latin word “revelatio,” which means disclosure of that which was previously hidden or unknown. In the unfolding of this central theme Jesus Christ is revealed in glory in contrast (as contrasted) with His presentation in the four Gospels, in His humiliation. In the Revelation, Christ is seen in relationship to time as He “who was, and who is to come (1:4).” He is related to the church (1:9; 3:22), the tribulation (ch.1-19), the millennial kingdom (20:1-10), and the eternal state (21-22).
Christ is presented in this book as the Ruler of the kings of the earth (1:5), the Bridegroom and the head of the Church (2-3), the Lion of the tribe of Judah (5:5), the Lion that was slain (5:6, 12), the High Priest (8:3-6), and the King and Judge (19:11; 20:11-15).
Finally, three major divisions of the Revelation must be recognized. John was commanded in 1:19 to write concerning the things of the past – “the things which you have seen (1:1-20);” to write things concerning the present – “the things which are (2-3);” and to write things concerning the future – “the things which will take place after this (4-22).” In other words, the apostle John was to write about the past, present, and future as revealed to him by our Lord Jesus Christ.
In closing, it is worthy to note that for many people, when reading the Bible, it’s easy to get caught up in the multitude of details, the hundreds of characters, events, and the many inspirational stories on one hand, while on the other hand, failing to pay attention to the one big story that is being told or the one big picture that is being painted about God which is the “The story of redemption”
The book ends – Genesis 1-2 gives us a picture of God’s creation design, what the world was like before sin entered the scene. Revelation 21-22 gives us a picture of God’s future intent, what the world will be like once redemption has been fully completed with the consummation of the judgement of sin and the evil one. These four chapters serve as bookends to the rest of the biblical story. Therefore, it is essential that when reading and studying the Bible, always keep this one big story in mind, when connecting the dots, because everything that happens in the Bible after Genesis 3:15 (especially after Genesis 12) is either directly or indirectly related to this one big redemption narrative.
F/B – Signs Of Our Times
Understanding The Signs Of Our Times .com