(revised July 23/97)
Repeatedly throughout Revelation we read a phrase referring to the "Testimony of Jesus". We find the most notable one in the above passage. By looking closely at the above passage, we see that the Testimony of Jesus is an integral part of the Revelation John received from Jesus Christ.
But what exactly is "the Testimony of Jesus"?
We know from the above verses that it is the very vital breath of prophecy -- the "spirit" of prophecy, as the angel put it. This inference explains to us that the Testimony of Jesus is the "core" and "root" of prophecy, for the "spirit" of a thing is the heart or the core element necessary for the existence of that thing.
For example, the following verse bears the thought that the "spirit" of the human body is essential for the body's existence:
James 2:26 For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.
In these cases, the term "spirit" refers to the "breath". The BREATH of our flesh is vital to the LIVES of our bodies. Now, the Bible does not always associate "spirit" of man with mere breath, but that is another study. However, in this case, "spirit" indeed is the cause for the existence of prophecy.
So, the vital LIFE of prophecy is "the Testimony of Jesus". "Prophecy" refers to the "true sayings of God," and not merely future foretellings. We tend to think of future predictions when we hear the termed "prophecy," but that is not always the case. We can categorize prophecy that gives forth future references as "predictive" prophecy. Prophecy is merely the speaking forth of God's Word in anointing and unction of the Spirit's empowerment. The angel, himself indicated that "prophecy" in this case is nothing more than "true sayings" according to in Rev. 19:9.
TRUE SAYINGS OF GOD
Reve 19:9 And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed [are] they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God.
The major topic in the last sentence from the above paragraph is the "true sayings of God." With that in mind we read...
Reve 19:10 And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See [thou do it] not: I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus: worship God: for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.
About John worshipping the angel for receiving "true sayings of God", the angel said that the Testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy. For that reason, John was not to worship the angel. However, we can ask ourselves what would that have to do with John hearing the true sayings of God? What would "the testimony of Jesus" and "the spirit of prophecy" have to do with the "true sayings of God"? To understand the answer we must realize that "prophecy" is the "true sayings of God".
John was so overwhelmingly joyful at the thought of having received the "true sayings of God" that he fell down to worship the messenger of those sayings. It is quite a thing to receive "true sayings of God" in a world where there is so much diversified religion and contradicting opinions of mankind concerning God and the spiritual. However, John heard an angel from God's own throne tell him that these words were the "true" sayings of God. John did not hear opinion or theory. He heard the precise truth from God!
When John did fall down to honour the angel, the angel replied that he was simply another servant of the Lord as was John. The angel put himself on the same level as John. We do not worship that which is on our level.
That the "Testimony of Jesus" was the very "spirit" of prophecy, or the very reason for the existence of "prophecy," stood as the reason John must worship God and none other. In other words, if it was not for the testimony of Jesus, nobody could receive "prophecy". So worship Jesus, John. Worship God. Thank God for the "testimony of Jesus".
The angel is speaking as though "prophecy" is the "true sayings of God" which John heard and over which he became so enamoured. It all pointed back to Jesus.
What, then, does it mean for the Testimony of Jesus to be the vital, necessary LIFE for enabling one to utter the true sayings of God?
We can see that there is utmost importance associated with the "Testimony of Jesus". Think of it. The very LIFE and enabling force to speak the true sayings of God, and not mere opinions of man, is that Testimony of Jesus. It's no small thing that we make certain we realize what the Testimony of Jesus actually refers to. Notice the other instances in which the Bible mentions it:
Revelation 1:1-2 The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to shew unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass; and he sent and signified [it] by his angel unto his servant John: Who bare record of the word of God, and of the testimony of Jesus Christ, and of all things that he saw.
Revelation 1:9 I John, who also am your brother, and companion in tribulation, and in the kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was in the isle that is called Patmos, for the word of God, and for the testimony of Jesus Christ.
Revelation 12:17 And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.
Notice, also, that the Bible mentions "The Word of God" beside the reference to the "Testimony of Jesus". And upon careful observation we can see that the Bible intends us to understand "the Word of God" as the "prophecy" and "true sayings of God" in Rev. 19:9-10. With this in mind, let us look at that passage again.
Revelation 19:9-10 And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed [are] they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God. And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See [thou do it] not: I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus: worship God: for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.
You read, in verse 9, of the "True Sayings of God." And then you read of the "Testimony of Jesus." Obviously the "true sayings of God" is a phrase describing the same element called "The Word of God," for the "sayings" of God would naturally be the "Word" of God.
These two elements are so important to believers today! Over and over we read of them in Revelation. Rev. 1:9 notes these two elements, as well as Rev. 12:17. The phrase "The Commandments of God" in the latter verse the phrase indicates "The Word of God".
Rev 1:9 ...the word of God, and for the testimony of Jesus Christ.
Rev. 12:17 ...which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.
So we have seen that the reference to "Prophecy" is actually speaking about "the true sayings of God". We cannot know these true sayings of God, or God's Word, without having the Testimony of Jesus. That is why we read reference to both the Testimony of Jesus and the Word of God in Rev 1:9. We cannot obtain one without the other. They go together.
Think of Rev. 1:1-2 to put the pieces of this puzzle together:
Revelation 1:1-2 The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to shew unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass; and he sent and signified [it] by his angel unto his servant John: Who bare record of the word of God, and of the testimony of Jesus Christ, and of all things that he saw.
Revelation 1:1-2 mentions the "word of God" and the "testimony of Jesus Christ."
Upon careful inspection of these two verses, we deduce the reason the Bible always associates the Testimony of Jesus with our opportunity to receive the Word of God. It is due to the truth that God gave the Revelation to Jesus Christ alone. He gave it to Jesus that Jesus, in turn, might give it to mankind. Without our relationship to Jesus Christ, we will not know the revelation. And this gives us the reason for the title of the specific book that we are presently studying: The Book of Revelation. The "Testimony of Jesus" concerns John's "Book of Revelation". It is "The Revelation". And it circles around Jesus' salvation for mankind, as we will see.
The Book of Revelation is an entire book written about a specific "revelation". It circles around the gift of revelation from God to Jesus Christ. God desires that Jesus Christ give this revelation to His servants. It speaks about the total redemption of humanity and God's plan for the "OLD creation" of fallen man and the "present" world. This book deals with salvation and goes back to the very root of sin, at the beginning.
Also in this final book of the Bible, we actually see a symbolic description of this very theme in seing God giving this "revelation" to Jesus Christ so that He might give it to us. There is only one instance in the book of Revelation where we read that God gives something to the man Jesus Christ, who gives it to a believer, and it is as follows:
Revelation 5:1-2 And I saw in the right hand of him that sat on the throne a book written within and on the backside, sealed with seven seals. And I saw a strong angel proclaiming with a loud voice, Who is worthy to open the book, and to loose the seals thereof?
Revelation 5:6-7 And I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of the throne and of the four beasts, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth. And he came and took the book out of the right hand of him that sat upon the throne.
This is a clear picture of God giving the man Jesus Christ something. We will later find Jesus gives it to John. So we can safely assume that "the Book" represents the Revelation which God gave to Jesus (Rev 1:1-12). This Book is therefore symbolic of the "Testimony of Jesus"! It is the "Revelation of Jesus Christ" which God gave to Him. Comprehending this point will help us better understand what the Book of Revelation is all about.
Before Chapter 5 of Revelation, there is mention of Christ coming in vision before John, and letters to seven Asian churches. But then in chapter four things become more serious. God's Word is leading us up to the major theme of the book. The Spirit catches John up to a door in heaven. And He sees a throne behind that door. He sees many wonderful things behind that door. Then the major picture begins. John mentions The BOOK as being in the hand of God. Jesus retrieves this book and opens it. John then tells us of all the contents of that book -- the seven seals, the seven trumpets and seven vials.
To hear the true sayings of God, or to hear "the Word of God" and the "Commandments of God", one must understand one's need for the vital reliance of receiving the "Revelation of Jesus Christ," or the "Testimony of Jesus Christ." The Lord dedicated the entire book of Revelation to this wonderful revelation. Without a relationship with Jesus Christ, one cannot know the revelation.
It is interesting to see the word "Testimony" used about "the Revelation". "The Testimony of Jesus Christ" is the same thing as "the Revelation of Jesus Christ". The word brings to mind an Old Testament reference that we will find sheds much insight as to the meaning of the "Revelation of Jesus Christ".
Exodus 25:22 And there I will meet with thee, and I will commune with thee from above the mercy seat, from between the two cherubims which [are] upon the ARK OF THE TESTIMONY, of all [things] which I will give thee in commandment unto the children of Israel.
God made known the Ark of the Covenant also as the "Ark of the Testimony"! The word "Covenant" speaks of the same meaning as does the word "Testimony." In studying scripture we find that the hallmark of the Old Covenant was the Ten Commandments. This plays a part in our understand as well. Keep in mind as we go along that the Ten Commandments represented the entire Old Covenant. The "Testimony" referred to the Ten Commandments in the Old Testament.
Exodus 31:18 And he gave unto Moses, when he had made an end of communing with him upon mount Sinai, two tables of testimony, tables of stone, written with the finger of God.
Therefore, the "Ark of the Testimony" was the Ark which HOUSED the "Testimony" or the Law of Moses. Even the term "Old 'Testament'" comes the reference to the Old TESTIMONY.
By studying the details given about the Ark of the Covenant we can find symbolic glimpses of the meaning of "the testimony of Jesus".
MANNA WITHIN THE ARK
There were three elements contained within the Ark that give us insight regarding the Testimony of Jesus Christ.
Exodus 16:33-34 And Moses said unto Aaron, Take a pot, and put an omer full of manna therein, and lay it up before the LORD, to be kept for your generations. As the LORD commanded Moses, so Aaron laid it up before the Testimony, to be kept.
God gave Israel MANNA as Bread from Heaven.
Exodus 16:12-15 I have heard the murmurings of the children of Israel: speak unto them, saying, At even ye shall eat flesh, and in the morning ye shall be filled with bread; and ye shall know that I [am] the LORD your God. And it came to pass, that at even the quails came up, and covered the camp: and in the morning the dew lay round about the host. And when the dew that lay was gone up, behold, upon the face of the wilderness [there lay] a small round thing, [as] small as the hoar frost on the ground. And when the children of Israel saw [it], they said one to another, It [is] manna: for they wist not what it [was]. And Moses said unto them, This [is] the bread which the LORD hath given you to eat.
The MANNA tasted like Honey in the mouth:
Exodus 16:31 And the house of Israel called the name thereof Manna: and it [was] like coriander seed, white; and the taste of it [was] like wafers [made] with honey.
There is something in the Book of Revelation that also tasted like honey.
Revelation 10:9-11 And I went unto the angel, and said unto him, Give me the little book. And he said unto me, Take [it], and eat it up; and it shall make thy belly bitter, but it shall be in thy mouth sweet as honey. And I took the little book out of the angel's hand, and ate it up; and it was in my mouth sweet as honey: and as soon as I had eaten it, my belly was bitter. And he said unto me, Thou must prophesy again before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings.
Jesus gave John a little book. And John ate the book. This book tasted like honey! We will find that the little book Jesus gave to John was the same book that God held in His right hand in Revelation 5. God gave that book to Jesus Christ. And Jesus gave it to John In Revelation 10.
Israel entered the land of Canaan. Three days later they saw their miraculous provision of manna cease. No more manna was available for food. Instead, the people began enjoying the fruit of the Land. Manna had provided them with strength and life to reach the Land during their long journey.
In like manner spiritual manna strengthens us that we might enter the Land. It takes us, as it was, to the Third Day. Throughout Scripture, mention of the Third Day always indicated the Land, or the Kingdom of God. Jesus died and rose again on the Third Day, also. We died, were buried and rose again with Him on that Third Day if we have obeyed Acts 2:38. Newness of life (Romans 6:4) is our entrance into the Kingdom of God through receiving God's Spirit of resurrection! Paul taught that the reception of the Holy Ghost was reception of the Spirit of Adoption whereby we cry "Abba, Father." (Gal. 4:6; Romans 8 :15). It is how we enter God's family. Hence, the term "Born Again".
The Israelites entered the Land under Joshua's leadership and on the third day of that entrance, the manna ceased and they ate food from the land, as mentioned. This Land represents the Kingdom of God that is not a physical locality. Jesus said the Kingdom is within you. Paul said the Kingdom is not meat and drink, but righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Ghost (Romans 14:17).
This manna fell from Heaven for forty years and sustained Israel. Jesus remarked about it, comparing manna with Himself:
Your fathers did eat manna in the wilderness, and are dead. (John 6:49)
This is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die. (John 6:50)
The description of manna has remarkable similarities to the description the Bible gives us of the Testimony of Jesus Christ.
The Bible describes knowledge from God as tasting like honey in its sweetness. And the Testimony of Jesus Christ given to Him, to be given to us, is indeed knowledge of God.
My son, eat thou honey, because it is good; and the honeycomb, which is sweet to thy taste: So shall the knowledge of wisdom be unto thy soul: when thou hast found it, then there shall be a reward, and thy expectation shall not be cut off. (Prov 24:13-14)
Knowledge of Jesus Christ is indeed manna to our spirits. The Bible calls "revelation" the knowledge that comes from God. God must "reveal" a thing, or grant "revelation", to our spirits for us to receive it.
The scroll was sweet as honey to the taste as John ate of it. And it made his belly bitter. How sweet is revelation when God imparts it to His saints! When Jesus gives us revelation, and only He can impart it, we receive wondrous insight that brings with it spiritual life!
Ezekiel also told of eating a scroll that tasted like Honey:
And he said unto me, Son of man, cause thy belly to eat, and fill thy bowels with this roll that I give thee. Then did I eat it; and it was in my mouth as honey for sweetness. (Ezek 3:3)
One told both Ezekiel and John to eat the scroll and then to prophesy afterwards. After Ezekiel ate this "roll", we read instructions for him to obey:
And he said unto me, Son of man, go, get thee unto the house of Israel, and speak with my words unto them. (Ezek 3:4)
And in the book of Revelation we find: And I took the little book out of the angel's hand, and ate it up; and it was in my mouth sweet as honey: and as soon as I had eaten it, my belly was bitter. And he said unto me, Thou must prophesy again before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings. (Rev 10:10-11)
Ezekiel was to prophesy to Israel, whereas John was to prophesy to the whole world -- all nations -- for the Gospel is to all the world. The eating of the scroll represents receiving revelation from God that enables one to speak forth God's Word.
Both these men of God ate the revelation and experienced embitterment within their bellies as a result. The belly speaks of the human spirit (not to be confused with the human soul), and not the literal organ that receives food. However, since the Bible implied reference to eating revelation, the picture of the human spirit receiving revelation is much like the belly receiving food. Hence, the Bible used "belly" to indicate the human spirit that receives insight from God.
The term "belly" is synonymous with the thought of the human spirit.
Prov 20:27 The spirit of man [is] the candle of the LORD, searching all the inward parts of the belly.
The revelation received from God affected the human spirits of both Ezekiel and John:
Ezekiel 2:9-10 And when I looked, behold, an hand [was] sent unto me; and, lo, a roll of a book [was] therein; And he spread it before me; and it [was] written within and without: and [there was] written therein lamentations, and mourning, and woe.
Ezekiel 3:1-3 Moreover he said unto me, Son of man, eat that thou findest; eat this roll, and go speak unto the house of Israel. So I opened my mouth, and he caused me to eat that roll. And he said unto me, Son of man, cause thy belly to eat, and fill thy bowels with this roll that I give thee. Then did I eat [it]; and it was in my mouth as honey for sweetness.
Ezekiel 3:14 So the spirit lifted me up, and took me away, and I went in bitterness, IN THE HEAT OF MY SPIRIT; but the hand of the LORD was strong upon me.
Rev 10:10 And I took the little book out of the angel's hand, and ate it up; and it was in my mouth sweet as honey: and as soon as I had eaten it, my belly was bitter.
Ezekiel's spirit burned while the revelation made John's belly bitter. Both accounts describe the same experience.
Belly - The word is used symbolically for the heart (Prov. 18:8; 20:27; 22:18, marg.) (Easton's Bible Dictionary).
When John ate the "Testimony of Jesus" it then induced him to PROPHESY.
BREATH TO PROPHESY
After eating the Scroll, it endued both John and Ezekiel with revelation, and it strengthened them to prophesy. Prophesying is uttering forth the true sayings of God (Rev. 19:9-10) which one receives in revelation.
The breath (spirit) so necessary to utter these true sayings of God is the Testimony of Jesus. God's message to mankind came through Jesus Christ. That is the reason John wrote in his Gospel that Jesus is the Word made flesh (John 1:1,14). Jesus Christ was the means God used to relay His WORD to us (Rev 1:1).
The Bible also referred to the Ark of The Covenant, of the Temple of old, as the Ark of the Testimony (Exodus 16:34). And this Ark contained the manna that tasted like honey. Therein we can see the connection between manna and the scroll of prophecy which John and Ezekiel ate and swallowed.
John prophesied after eating the honey-flavored scroll. The angel told him that the Spirit or life of such prophecy is the Testimony of Jesus, as Israel kept the honey-tasting manna in the Ark of the Testimony.
In the ark of the great Christ Jesus Himself is the Testimony -- the Testimony of Jesus. From Him come forth true manna; bread from Heaven and Bread of Life. This true manna is the spiritual source of life we receive on our journeys. And all true believers must devour this manna that we might make ourselves ready to utter true sayings of God.
One can speak forth truths from the Bible with lifeless and empty words. Yet one who knows God and has His Spirit within will utter truths in the very anointed power of the Holy Ghost!
Jesus' testimony is the spirit or essence of all His purpose in coming as the Word made flesh. In Him is manna. The words He speaks to us are the bread -- His flesh -- the Ark of the Testimony from which we eat, the manna from heaven.
It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life. (John 6:63)
We eat of Christ who is the Ark of Testimony holding all manna. Manna is the Testimony of Christ. And we have Spirit, Life, to strengthen us that we may prophesy or heal or perform whatever ministry God calls us to give to this old world.
In the Gospels, Jesus referred to the FLESH we must eat to receive eternal life, and called that flesh the true bread from Heaven:
John 6:31-35 Our fathers did eat manna in the desert; as it is written, He gave them bread from heaven to eat. Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world. Then said they unto him, Lord, evermore give us this bread. And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.
The people could not understand what He meant. Cannibalism?
Jesus cleared up their misunderstanding by explaining that the BREAD He referred to by saying His flesh was not literally His flesh, but were actually HIS WORDS. It was His TESTIMONY. And we must eat it, or in other words, BELIEVE IT. This fortifies the thought that the eating of the scroll in Revelation 10 represents believing God's WORD by receiving revelation of that Word.
John 6:60 Many therefore of his disciples, when they had heard [this], said, This is an hard saying; who can hear it?
John 6:63 It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, [they] are spirit, and [they] are life.
As John ate the Scroll, symbolically fulfilling the very same representation that Jesus illustrated by speaking of eating His flesh, we must BELIEVE THE GOSPEL. It is the Law of LIFE. It is LIFE since it affects our spirits. Only revelation from God will affect the dead human spirit and grant eternal life. And in John 6:31-35 Jesus even went so far as to say that the MANNA was a shadow of the true bread from heaven. THE MIGHTY ANGEL
We find that the "angel" in Revelation 10, who gave the book to John, is another reference to Jesus Christ. Notice the description of the angel.
Reve 10:1 And I saw another mighty angel come down from heaven, clothed with a cloud: and a rainbow [was] upon his head, and his face [was] as it were the sun, and his feet as pillars of fire:
1) clothed with a cloud
2) rainbow on his head
3) Face like the Sun
4) Feet like fire
FEET LIKE FIRE
This is how Revelation described Jesus earlier on.
Reve 1:14-15 His head and [his] hairs [were] white like wool, as white as snow; and his eyes [were] as a flame of fire; And his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and his voice as the sound of many waters.
The Bible said Jesus had feet and legs like pillars of burning brass in both Revelation 1 and Revelation 10.
The rainbow upon His head reminds us of the following.
Reve 4:2-3 And immediately I was in the spirit: and, behold, a throne was set in heaven, and [one] sat on the throne. And he that sat was to look upon like a jasper and a sardine stone: and [there was] a rainbow round about the throne, in sight like unto an emerald.
God's glory appeared as an emerald rainbow. And God gives His glory to none else, telling us that Jesus Christ, God manifested in flesh, is the angel with the rainbow on His head. Jesus is not an angel as Michael would be an angel. Jesus is God in the flesh. And the word "angel" means "Messenger." Through His manifestation in flesh, God would give a message to the world. The "man" Christ Jesus was God's means to give man that revelation. The Bible called each of the pastors of the seven churches of Asia "the angel of the church at..." in Revelation chapters 2 and 3. Yet they were not angels as we would consider Michael or Gabriel angels.
As the Tree of life cannot impart its life to mankind by itself, there was fruit from that tree. The fruit was the means the tree used to give the life to mankind. So is the "man" Christ Jesus. We cannot receive God as God without a manifestation of "God in flesh" through which His eternal life can be bestowed upon us.
The rainbow indicated the everlasting covenant between God and man, as seen in post-Noahic flooding. Notice the presence of clouds, too. Also below is the reference to the Glory of God that Ezekiel saw on the Chariot:
Genesis 9:13 I do set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be for a token of a covenant between me and the earth.
Ezekiel 1:28 As the appearance of the bow that is in the cloud in the day of rain, so [was] the appearance of the brightness round about. This [was] the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the LORD. And when I saw [it], I fell upon my face, and I heard a voice of one that spake.
LIKE THE SUN
The disciples seen Jesus on Mount Transfiguration as having a face shining as the sun as Revelation 10:1 describes this "mighty angel".
Matt 17:2 And was transfigured before them: and his face did shine as the sun, and his raiment was white as the light. This is what Revelation said about the mighty angel.
Reve 10:1 ...and his face [was] as it were the sun, ...
We know Jesus is clothed with clouds as was the angel in Revelation 10 due to the following:
Psal 18:11 He made darkness his secret place; his pavilion round about him [were] dark waters [and] thick clouds of the skies.
Psal 97:2 Clouds and darkness [are] round about him: righteousness and judgment [are] the habitation of his throne.
1The 4:17 Then we which are alive [and] remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.
Reve 1:7 Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they [also] which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen.
I not only propose that the Word says that the Lord shall return in the clouds since He has left in the clouds, but also that the Lord is in clouds at this moment. Clouds represent the GLORY all around Him.
The mighty angel of Rev. 10 ROARS as a lion, since Jesus is the lion of the tribe of Judah, who took the sealed book.
Revelation 5:5-7 And one of the elders saith unto me, Weep not: behold, the Lion of the tribe of Juda, the Root of David, hath prevailed to open the book, and to loose the seven seals thereof. And I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of the throne and of the four beasts, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth. And he came and took the book out of the right hand of him that sat upon the throne.
Yes, the Bible represented the REVELATION or the TESTIMONY OF JESUS as a scroll. And Jesus gave this scroll to John to eat. It tasted as did the Manna. And the Israelites put the MANNA within the ark of the TESTIMONY in the days of Exodus.
We must realise that to PROPHESY, or to utter the true sayings of God, we must receive the TESTIMONY OF JESUS, or the REVELATION of Jesus Christ. Only then can God empower us to BREATHE forth the Life that is God's Word as did the angel!! God gave His Revelation to Jesus Christ to give it to the servants of God -- both angels and men alike. The Bible pictures this as John eating the Book in Revelation 10.
The entire glory in the picture of Jesus having taken the book in Revelation chapter 5 was that no man could come to take it and to open it. Jesus was the only one who could approach the throne and take the book and open it.
Reve 5:2-3 And I saw a strong angel proclaiming with a loud voice, Who is worthy to open the book, and to loose the seals thereof? And no man in heaven, nor in earth, neither under the earth, was able to open the book, neither to look thereon.
Jesus, however, took the book, and opened it.
Reve 6:1 And I saw when the Lamb opened one of the seals
And after John explains this we read of the little book in Revelation 10 as "opened".
Reve 10:2 And he had in his hand a little book open: and he set his right foot upon the sea, and [his] left [foot] on the earth,
What book did John see opened? Why even mention that it was "opened"? We understand why when we connect the general theme of the narrative with the picture here. That theme is the "BOOK".
When John said the book made his belly bitter after eating it, he meant that it kindled his human spirit within him. He became enraged at the sin infesting mankind and the wickedness caused by the fall. And then he prophesied forth the WORD OF GOD.
Reve 10:10-11 And I took the little book out of the angel's hand, and ate it up; and it was in my mouth sweet as honey: and as soon as I had eaten it, my belly was bitter. And he said unto me, Thou must prophesy again before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings.
In fact, the book of Revelation is explaining in symbol form how the work of the cross (Jesus' death) redeemed mankind and breached the gap between God and man that stood since Adam's transgression. Since the time of Adam's sin, disobedience cut mankind away from God. And it was not until Jesus came and took the book that the elders cried Jesus redeemed mankind. Jesus commissioned the disciples to preach the Gospel to the world, and all who accept and obey it are "rescued" and reconciled to God again. Man can finally look upon the book (Rev 6:1) when no man was worthy to be able to do so before Jesus Christ. (The beast told John to come and see!) And we see the CHURCH representative of all mankind whom Jesus reconciled to God, and we see the subsequent wrath of God upon all the sin and Gospel-rejecting sinners of the world. That is why John received the revelation that burned in his spirit that induced him to prophesy of redemption and the need for us to abandon sin. The contents of the little book, as Jesus showed John initially in Revelation 6 and onward, contained details of how God is dealing and judging sin in the world.
We see this picture in the revelation since God must deal with the world and the remainder of fallen humanity that refuses to accept redemption after that redemption has been completed. Part of the revelation is the Gospel, and the other part is what occurs with those who reject the Gospel. It is the entire picture!!
THE GOSPEL OF THE KINGDOM
The picture of Rev. 10 with John eating the scroll enlightens us somewhat more as to that which the Bible speaks of in the words "Testimony of Jesus". Revelation Chapter 6 matches most perfectly with Matthew 24.
The first four seals in Revelation 6 are as follows.
1) The White-Horsed rider, holding a bow and going forth to conquer.
2) The Red-Horsed rider with a sword taking peace from earth.
3) A Black-Horsed rider with a set of balances. John heard a voice crying out indications of famine.
4) And the fourth Pale-Horsed rider of death with hell following behind him.
Matthew lists these four elements in Matthew 24 in precisely the same order.
Matt 24:4-9 And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you. For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many [WHITE HORSE OF FALSE RELIGION] . And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars [RED HORSE OF WAR]: see that ye be not troubled: for all [these things] must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines [BLACK HORSE OF FAMINE] , and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. All these [are] the beginning of sorrows. Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you [PALE HORSE OF DEATH AND HELL]: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name's sake.
And we read of the fifth seal. John saw martyrs under the altar, having been slain. This of course would parallel the deaths of the saints in the fourth seal. God told these martyrs to wait for vengeance to occur when the world kills the remainder of their brethren in the same manner it killed them. And Matthew also listed the aspect of waiting for something in Matthew 24 in perfect succession with the seals.
Matt 24:12-14 And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.
The sixth seal in Revelation 6 is the sun becoming black and the moon becoming bloodied, with the stars falling.
Matt 24:29 Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:
So we see a clear parallel of Revelation 6 and Matthew 24. Many things found in Matthew 24 parallel Revelation in more than just Revelation chapter 6. Let me add that Matthew 24:14 relates with Revelation 10 and the eating of the Scroll, also..
Matthew 24:14 And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.
Reve 10:6-7 And sware by him that liveth for ever and ever, who created heaven, and the things that therein are, and the earth, and the things that therein are, and the sea, and the things which are therein, that there should be time no longer: But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the prophets.
God would finish the "Mystery". God formerly had sealed the little book seven times with seven seals. It was therefore a mystery. No man could open and look upon it. God hid it from view. And when John saw Jesus holding the book aloft in the air, opened, he heard Jesus cry the very words we read in the above verses. He said the MYSTERY SHOULD BE FINISHED. What mystery should God finish? The mystery he held in His hand, which He opened and revealed to his servants, as Revelation 1:1 said that Jesus would only give the revelation to the "servants" of God. But Jesus opened it and gave it to John to see. And then a voice told John to take it and eat it. Then the voice told him to prophesy. What would he prophesy? The truths of the revelation that he just received, of course.
In comparing the obvious parallels with Matthew 24:14 and Revelation 10:6-7 we find that The SCROLL or the TESTIMONY of Jesus Christ is "the Gospel of the Kingdom". The voice told John to prophesy to all the nations -- to the world. This is precisely what Jesus notes in Matthew 24:14. And Jesus said the END will come after God accomplished this. We read of the FINISHING of the MYSTERY (the formerly UNREVEALED SCROLL OF REVELATION) in Rev. 10:
The phrase "Time should be no longer" actually means "there would be no more DELAY", according to the margin of the verse 6. There would be no more delay for what? There will be no more delay for God to witthold the MYSTERY from mankind. The verse 7 explains what God will no longer delay. And that is the MYSTERY OF GOD. That revelation was unrevealed for thousands of years. God sealed it from man's understanding as a scroll with seven seals. Only Christ could open it and reveal it to God's servants. TIME FRAME
Earlier we identified the Mighty Angel as Jesus Christ. This angel roared. When did Jesus stand on the land and sea and roar? Or is it, when WILL Jesus stand on the land and sea and roar, as though it be future? Scripture indicates, through the picture of John eating the scroll and prophesying, that it has already occurred since He rose from the dead and God filled the disciples of Christ with His Spirit and began preaching.
The picture of John eating the scroll is a picture of John receiving a revelation or an illumination from God. The truths fed his understanding with the things of God that were formerly a "mystery" to all mankind. And after having eaten the scroll the voice told John to prophesy to all nations.
Notice the link in this thought with the following:
Acts 1:8 But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be WITNESSES unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.
In other words, they would preach to all the world for a WITNESS. Note the term "witness" in Acts and Matthew 24:14.
Matthew 24:14 And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a WITNESS unto all nations; and then shall the end come.
The Bible also indicated "all nations" in both verses, and these all seem to be the connections with Rev. 10 and John's eating of the scroll and subsequent Prophesying, or PREACHING.
LAW OF LIFE WITHIN THE ARK
We have said much about the manna and its foreshadowing message about the New Covenant. Not only was the MANNA within the Ark of the Testimony, but so, too, was the Law, or the Mosaic testimony, itself, of course. Notice the description of the stone tablets of the Ten Commandments:
Exodus 32:15 And Moses turned, and went down from the mount, and the two tables of the testimony [were] in his hand: the tables [were] written on both their sides; on the one side and on the other [were] they written.
Revelation 5:1 And I saw in the right hand of him that sat on the throne a book written within and on the backside, sealed with seven seals.
God wrote the tablets of Ten Commandments on the front and back as was the scroll which Jesus gave to John. The manna forms a link to the ark of the covenant. (The manna tasted like honey and the little book having tasted like honey). And there is also another link to the ark odf the covenant. The tablets of the "testimony," also, tie our thoughts to the little book. God wrote both "testimonies" upon the outside and inside, or on both the front and back. Moses Ten Commandments were the Law.
Yes, the MANNA and the LAW were both within the Ark of Testimony. This is identical to the Revelation of Christ (the Bread of Heaven), and God wrote upon the book of the scroll within and without, contained in the TESTIMONY OF JESUS CHRIST. God called the Testimony of Jesus, or the NEW TESTIMONY (NEW COVENANT) "the Law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus" in Romans 8:2. To partake of the Testimony is to partake BOTH of the manna and the Law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus. As Moses issued the Law and Ten Commandments in the Old Testament, Jesus issued forth the Law of the Spirit of Life:
Romans 8:2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.
The entire picture of the Ark of the Old Testament or Covenant is a foreshadow of the greater "Ark" of the New Testament.
PRIESTHOOD IN THE ARK OF THE COVENANT
Recall Paul's reference to "the law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus" (Rom. 8:2). These words of Paul suggest that Christ is an Ark containing the Law of the Spirit of Life.
Moses put the Law into the Ark of the Testament in a pre-Christian era. And that is where the Ark received its title: Ark of the Covenant or Testimony. Moses placed the Ten Commandments within the Ark, and referred to them as the Testimony.
And thou shalt put the mercy seat above upon the ark; and in the ark thou shalt put the testimony that I shall give thee. And there I will meet with thee, and I will commune with thee from above the mercy seat, from between the two cherubims which are upon the ark of the testimony, of all things which I will give thee in commandment unto the children of Israel. (Exo 25:21-22)
Though one cannot eat stone tablets, Jesus said that the Spirit puts the administration of His covenant within our hearts. John demonstrated this by eating the scroll and putting it within himself.
John ate the scroll that God wrote on both sides, and received both the manna and Law of Christ at one time, when he ate it, for they are the same.
This scroll also contained the confirmation of ministry, like Aaron's budded rod in the Ark, which God resurrected to life, thereby designating the Levitical tribe's right of priesthood. The Israelites murmurred as to who should be able to minister as priests. And God comanded that each tribe etch their tribal names into a rod of wood, and place all of them into the tabernacle. The rod which would "bud" would designate which tribe the Lord chose for priesthood. Aaron's rod budded, and was put into the ark to ever stand as proof of their tribal ministry of priesthood.
John said he was a priest and king, as all New testament believers are today (Rev. 1:6). John ministered and prophesied to all the world after eating the scroll.
Yes, a third element was in the ark. The Rod of Aaron. Aaron speaks of the priesthood, or the "ministry".
Symbolically this teaches us that true "ministry" demands the reception of revelation from God. Remember that God gave the revelation to Jesus Christ to in give it in turn to His servants. Only by receiving the revelation from Jesus, or the testimony of Jesus Christ, can one "prophesy" about the true sayings of God to a lost and dying world.
Numbers 17:7-10 And Moses laid up the rods before the LORD in the tabernacle of witness. And it came to pass, that on the morrow Moses went into the tabernacle of witness; and, behold, the rod of Aaron for the house of Levi was budded, and brought forth buds, and bloomed blossoms, and yielded almonds. And Moses brought out all the rods from before the LORD unto all the children of Israel: and they looked, and took every man his rod. And the LORD said unto Moses, Bring Aaron's rod again before the testimony, to be kept for a token against the rebels; and thou shalt quite take away their murmurings from me, that they die not.
Jesus, however, belonged to the priesthood that was different from the Old Testament Levitical priesthood:
Psalm 110:4 The LORD hath sworn, and will not repent, Thou [art] a priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek.
Hebrews 7:11-17 If therefore perfection were by the Levitical priesthood, (for under it the people received the law,) what further need [was there] that another priest should rise after the order of Melchisedec, and not be called after the order of Aaron? For the priesthood being changed, there is made of necessity a change also of the law. For he of whom these things are spoken pertaineth to another tribe, of which no man gave attendance at the altar. For [it is] evident that our Lord sprang out of Juda; of which tribe Moses spake nothing concerning priesthood. And it is yet far more evident: for that after the similitude of Melchisedec there ariseth another priest, Who is made, not after the law of a carnal commandment, but after the power of an endless life. For he testifieth, Thou [art] a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.
We also are PRIESTS after the order of Melchisedek, and minister in the spirit and not in the letter. John showed us such Spirit ministry as he went out to prophesy after eating of the Testimony of Jesus.
Revelation 1:6 And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him [be] glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.
Jesus is the ARK of the TESTIMONY. The Ark of the Old Covenant contained all the LAW, MANNA and ROD OF AARON. He is the WAY (true law), TRUTH (manna of the WORD) and LIFE (resurrected Rod of Melchisedek, as opposed to Aaron's rod -- the BRANCH). ALL we need from God is in Him. God gave the revelation to Him to give to us in turn. And therefore all we need is in Him. He is the fullness of the Godhead:
Colossians 2:9-10 For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power:
The Testimony of Jesus contains ALL we will ever need from God.
When we eat Christ's Word we show our reliance upon Him as the only sacrifice that was able to free us from sin. All the fullness of God's provisions is in Christ.
Jesus is the True Ark housing the True Testimony, which the old Ark and testimony of the Old Testament merely foreshadowed. John bare record of God's Word and Jesus' Testimony.
Rev 1:1-2 The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to show unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass; and he sent and signified it by his angel unto his servant John: Who bare record of the word of God, and of the testimony of Jesus Christ, and of all things that he saw.
God sent the angel was to give John the Testimony of Jesus.
The Bible also confirmed this thought in the passage that speaks of John being on the Island of Patmos because of the Word of God and the Testimony of Jesus (Rev. 1:9).
Deuteronomy 4:2 gave warning not to add to the commandments, but to keep them as God gave them. Similarly, in Revelation 22 God warned us not to add to the scroll of the Revelation from Jesus. The Law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus must remain unadulterated (Ro. 8:2) as much as Moses had to preseve the Law of Moses untouched.
Why must we so carefully keep God's Word unaltered? Understand that God carefully laid out this Word to supply us with understanding that His power may work effectually upon those who read and hear and obey it. (1 Kings 6:12 also speaks similarly about the Word of God.)
God referred to the Law as the "Testimony of God" but was without the blessing of a Mediator such as Jesus Christ. In Moses' day there was yet no Calvary available for our salvation. God did not yet redeem Man from sin. Priests offered Sacrifices to God to hold sin back temporarily on an annual basis by removing all the sins of the previous year from the people. Priests had to offer sacrifices every year. Each time an individual sinned or trespassed, an additional sacrifice had to offered.
The Law of Moses was hard. Peter said it was a burden that no man could carry (Acts 15:10). This impossible situation existed due to the lack of a mediator named Jesus Christ. Jesus came and fulfilled the impossible Law that we could not fulfill. When He died on the cross He nailed that Law with Himself to that tree. We must forever live morally as the Old Covenant commanded. However, God replaced the aspect of forcing people to obey God through a set of rules by having the Law instilled within our human spirits. This is the reason we will live a holy life. The holiness of the New Testament does not in any manner contradict the holiness of the Old Testament. God hates sin as much as He did under the Law. But the means of having us obey commands of holy living have changed since the days of Law.
Christ is our mediator both now and forever. He offered His own blood as our sacrifice to God. And now we have a new Law. We have a Law that removed the effects of Moses' Law.
The Law of Moses proved to be a Law of death. It was a Law of condemnation (2 Cor. 3:6-9). It was not wrong in its assessment of sin, but its nature in commanding us to make ourselves live a holy life could not work. Since sin was in the flesh of mankind, Law only stirred up that sin when men attempted to obey it. This is because Law urged flesh to do good deeds. Christ's Law of life is a new Law that is much more powerful in dealing against sin, if obeyed, than the old Law. It does not urge FLESH to live right, but offers new means to live just as much a holy life as God wanted the people under the Old Testament to live.
When we "eat" of Christ's Word, or eat of the Law, we show our "reliance" upon His sacrifice to free us from sin. You can say you have eaten the Law of the Spirit when you have believed upon it. And, in effect, we show our freedom from Moses' Law, when we eat the New Testament revelation, for sin used the Law to slay Israelites who endeavoured to keep it (Ro. 7:11). We abandon the efforts to obey flesh-prompting laws that command us to make ourselves do good deeeds to receive righteousness when we "eat" the New Testament revelation. God did not make Moses' Law for a righteous man. And God makes us righteous by the eating of Christ's sacrifice. So what purpose would Moses' Law have for us today? Oh, we believe the demands of Mosaic Law were indeed good, but the Law itself urged people to live righteously by following a rule book while not empowering them to keep the rules. And that is not what the New Covenant is like. In the New Covenant we receive God's life into our lives when we believe according to the Gospel, and that life causes us to live holy lives. We eat, spiritually speaking, the words of life. (This is not the literal eating of a eucharistic bread, for the eating of the bread represents believing the truths of Christ's sacrifice for our sins).
The priests of the Old Testament ate of the sacrifice that they offered to God. Moses told Israel to consume the lambs that they slew during Passover. And God saves us by our eating of His flesh, which He symbolically represented as eating bread. What actually saves is the belief that we exercise after knowing His words. Spiritually speaking, the Bible says that we eat manna when we believe, just as John did not eat a papyrus scroll, but was given a symbolic vision of what happened when he believed God and fed upon God's Word. This vision helps us to understand how we receive revelation. It is like eating food. It grants us life. God saves us and we also receive strength to minister to others that they might know!
Mountains always symbolized KINGDOMS in the Bible. And the dream of Nebuchadnezzar involved an image, which experienced a fatal blow at its base, and a mountain: Daniel 2:34-35 Thou sawest till that a stone was cut out without hands, which smote the image upon his feet [that were] of iron and clay, and brake them to pieces. Then was the iron, the clay, the brass, the silver, and the gold, broken to pieces together, and became like the chaff of the summer threshingfloors; and the wind carried them away, that no place was found for them: and the stone that smote the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole earth.
We find the interpretation of the ROCK that became a MOUNTAIN that filled the earth in the following:
Daniel 2:44-45 And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, [but] it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever. Forasmuch as thou sawest that the stone was cut out of the mountain without hands, and that it brake in pieces the iron, the brass, the clay, the silver, and the gold; the great God hath made known to the king what shall come to pass hereafter: and the dream [is] certain, and the interpretation thereof sure.
God will set up a KINGDOM that will GRADUALLY fill all the earth. When the angel of Rev. 10 roared it was the Stone, Jesus Christ, crying forth the truth of the Gospel of the KINGDOM (mountain) of God. The apostles began preaching and prophesying it all around the region, and it is continuing to spread across the world today! Praise God! It is presently in the process of CONSUMING all kingdoms. It's not a presidential campaign in which Christ intended us to run, but it is a message -- the Good News of the Kingdom -- spread abroad by common people who have been born again and have thus ENTERED the Kingdom of Heaven.
John 3:5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and [of] the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.
Since the day of Pentecost the roaring lion has stood on land and sea as the Apostles spread the Word of God -- the Testimony of Jesus -- the Gospel of the KINGDOM.
Matthew 24:14 And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.
Preached to all the world, and received by people everywhere, the MOUNTAIN is consuming all kingdoms. Jesus said the END would come after the Mountain comsumes all kingdoms by having all nations hear the Gospel of the KINGDOM. Every generation has seen believers eat the scroll of the Gospel and prophesy to all nations, and the message has spread further and further, generation after generation, to all the world.
After we read of John going out to prophesy, we read of the TWO WITNESSES in Rev. 11. They are the accompanying witnesses of Spirit and Word that go forth with every believer who goes to Jesus to take the scroll and eat it, and then prophesy the truth. They confirm the Word with signs following. They convict the hearts of the hearers.
Notice the WORD pricking the hearts and the SPIRIT confirming the WORD with signs and wonders. The two witnesses at work!
Acts 2:37-43 Now when they heard [this], they were pricked in their heart [WORD WITNESSES TO THEM], and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men [and] brethren, what shall we do? Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, [even] as many as the Lord our God shall call. And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation. Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added [unto them] about three thousand souls. And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers. And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles [SPIRIT WITNESSES TO THEM IN MIRACLES}.
The WORD pricked their hearts, and the SIGNS AND WONDERS of the Spirit's power confirmed that word. Two witnesses of SPIRIT and WORD did the work, as they still do today!
So, we see John told to PROPHESY to all nations. And we found out that WITNESSES whom God filled with the Holy Ghost (Acts 1:8) preach this Gospel to all the world. These Spirit-filled "witnesses" preach to the world beginning at Jerusalem. The term WITNESSES and the preaching of the Gospel to all the world go together. And after hearing of John prophesying the GOSPEL (mystery) to all the world after eating the little book, we read of TWO WITNESSES in Revelation 11:1. Obviously the prophecy of the two witnesses has much to do with the prophecy of John. John would witness using the two witnesses of Spirit and Word.
After the two witnesses prophesy, God will finish the job. Jesus said the end would come when the Church has preached the Gospel to all nations.
Compare the next two verses with one another:
Matthew 24:14 And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.
Revelation 11:15 And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become [the kingdoms] of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.
In Matthew 24, Jesus asnwered the disicples' question of when the world would end.
Matt 24:3 And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what [shall be] the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?
The "world" means the AGE OF MAN'S KINGDOM.
The Lord cried aloud that the Mystery "should be finished" at the sounding of the seventh angel. And here we read that when the seventh angel sounded, the kingdoms of the world became those of Christ. So the finishing of the mystery is obviously the kingdoms of the world becoming those of Christ. This is the Gospel of the Kingdom. Christ's Kingdom takes over all the earth's Kingdom. Jesus said that the Church would preach the Gospel of the Kingdom to all the world and then the end would come. And Daniel saw that the mountain of the Kingdom would consume all other kingdoms. All these visions and references link to one picture!
The kingdoms were CONSUMED with the Gospel by the time the seventh angel sounded. The kingdoms of the world BECAME the Kingdoms of Christ when the seventh angel sounded his trumpet. God completed the mystery of Revelation 10:6,7. The Lord represented this mystery by the scroll He formerly did not reveal, that was OPENED by Christ. It is the Revelation of Jesus Christ: the TESTIMONY OF JESUS. The Gospel of the Kingdom is the Revelation of Jesus Christ that the Church has preached to all nations by the time of Revelation 11:15.
Today, He still stands on land and sea claiming it all, the world, by way of prophecy. We are the Body of Christ and we cross land and sea to spread the Word of God to all the world as a witness. And when all the world has heard, and ample time given for people to accept and believe this Gospel, then shall the end come. Jesus foretold in a challenging roar that the world will be His. Who dare challenge this Lion of the tribe of Judah and His truth?
God witttheld the Mystery from revelation to man until one died to free mankind. That day came, and the Lord Jesus, because He died and rose again, took the mystery and opened it! The scroll's contents of events are over when the seventh angel sounds his trumpet.
Revelation 10:7 But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the prophets.
At the seventh trumpet the Kingdoms of the world become Christ's and the seven angels of wrath pour the seven vials in rapid succession ending the Mystery of the scroll. The end.
Jesus has already opened the mystery hid from the ages. It is Christ in you the hope of Glory. Jesus Christ came and opened the mystery. The only mystery ever alluded to, in a general sense, with the coming of Jesus Christ was the Gospel. He was our only hope. He alone could open the scroll.
Colossians 1:25-28 Whereof I am made a minister, according to the dispensation of God which is given to me for you, to fulfil the word of God; [Even] the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to his saints: To whom God would make known what [is] the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles [ALL NATIONS] ; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory: Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus:
Paul was a minister like John. He ate it and prophesied in the heat of Holy Ghost, fired-up, empowerment in his spirit. What other mystery is there? What else could God have focused the scroll around? -- What else but the Gospel of the Kingdom and the Testimony of Jesus?