Understanding the book of Revelation with Afolabi Dollars (2)
Still on our foundational study of the book of REVELATION.
One of the major reasons many of us get confused and blank in our understanding and interpretation of this book is because we see or sometimes take many of the things written in it to be literal, instead of METAPHORICAL
We need to understand that this book is first of all a VISION and not a literal presentation. It is a compendium of series of VISIONS shown to John through an angel using FIGURATIVE SYMBOLS and IMAGERIES to explain spiritual realities!
Having this key understanding would make us decode for instance that the “streets of gold” is NOT literal, but FIGURATIVE in John’s VISION just like the “Valley of dry bones” in Ezekiel’s VISION!
Therefore, for an adequate understanding of REVELATION, the reader must recognize that it is a distinct kind of spiritual literature. Revelation is APOCALYPTIC, a kind of writing that is HIGHLY SYMBOLIC.
Another factor to put into consideration in decoding the book of Revelation are the CLUES/Representations provided, as the book provides a number of clues for its own interpretation (For example, “Stars” represent angels, “The Lampstands” represent 7churches
In Rev.1:20; “the great harlot” represents BABYLON in Rev.17, and “the heavenly Jerusalem” represents the Lamb’s Bride in Rev. 21:9-10, etc.
Another factor we need to pay attention to in decoding REVELATION is the PECULIARITY OF
FEATURES. There is a sequencial use of the NUMBER SEVEN occuring as a peculiar feature about 52 times in this book.
Among these number seven features are SEVEN stars, SEVEN churches, SEVEN spirits, SEVEN horns, SEVEN eyes, SEVEN trumpets, SEVEN thunders, SEVEN beatitudes, SEVEN signs, SEVEN crowns, SEVEN hills, SEVEN plagues, SEVEN Kings, SEVEN golden bowls, SEVEN seals which is the particular peculiar feature we are focusing on in this series.
The SEVEN SEALS describes the events before and during Christ’s RETURN to rule the earth!
CONTEXTUALLY speaking, The number seven in REVELATION is a numerical symbol for COMPLETENESS.
That’s why there’d be no end UNTIL the 7th SEAL is opened and the 7th TRUMPET is sounded to COMPLETE the mysteries of God! That’s why we laugh at those who are speculating and saying that the END has come NOW