Text: Rev. 1:1-3
Title:  “The Blessed Book”
Subj:  The Blessing attendant to reading the Book of Revelation

 Intro:  I wonder what your condition is tonight?  Are you “happy”?  Are you “joyful”?  Or are you “blessed“?  It has been said that “happiness” is experienced when your external circumstances are in line with your expectations.  In other words, you are “happy” when everything is going your way.  Conversely, “joy” is experienced when your internal spiritual life is in line with God’s expectations.  In other words, “joy” is not dependent on your outward circumstances, no matter how positive or negative, but on your relationship, fellowship, and walk with God.  No Baptist martyr was “happy” to be burnt at the stake for their faith in God, but most were “joyful” to be burnt at the stake for their faith in God.  So we can be “joyful” when the most unhappy with our circumstances.

   But there is another form of “happiness” that is found in the Bible that is not external happiness nor internal joy, but, instead, is a state of being.  The Bible term is “blessed.”  And though “blessed” translates to “happy,” it is a state of spiritual happiness that is bestowed by God for an action taken by man (repeat). The word “blessed” occurs 82 times in the N.T. in various contexts.  I would like to share with you tonight one of those uses and conditions of being “blessed,” so that you too might enter into this state of happiness bestowed by God.

 Rev. 1:1-3------”The Blessed Book”---------prayer

 Notice v3 (read).  This is the only book of the Bible that promises a state of blessedness to those who read, hear and keep the words of this prophecy.  Why?  #1 Because it is the fullest revelation of Jesus Christ in the power and glory of His deity.  #2 Because this prophetic book is the Biblical book of completion, the end of God’s earthly purpose and plan for mankind.  #3 Because the events and characters are so far a field from our normal experiences that many, if not most, Christians feel that they cannot understand the book. 

 I. The Person of the Blessed (1a)

   A. The Revelation (“unveiling”) of Jesus (humanity; “Jehovah is salvation“) Christ (office; i.e., “Messiah, Anointed One“)

        1. Revelation reveals more titles of Christ than any other book. If nothing else was revealed in Revelation but Jesus Christ that should be enough for you to be blessed beyond measure! 

 II. From Whence Cometh This Blessedness? (1b)

   A. From God to Christ: from Christ to His angel: from His angel to His servant John: from John to His servants.

        1. Authorized and authenticated by the triune God

        2. Granted to Jesus Christ (Son of God, Second Person of Godhead)

            a. As the subject of the book (unveiling of Christ) (In the O.T. Christ was known as “The Word of the Lord”)

            b. As the conduit of truth (shew unto His servants)

            c. As the revealer of prophecy (things shortly (“quickly once they begin”) coming to pass)

         3. Sent by His angel (“messenger“) (4)

         4. Signified (“made known”) to apostle John (writer)

         5. Shown unto Christ’s servants (“bond slaves”)

 Note:  Who are “His servants”?
1st, “This word is peculiarly appropriated to Israel throughout the O.T. and is used 14 times in Rev. of those who are [Israel’s] subjects.” (Companion Bible)  Therefore we can be assured that the Jews, as a nation, are prominent in the book of Revelation. 
2nd, In the N.T. the term servant is used by those who voluntarily submit themselves to God’s authority as bond slaves.  In relationship, we are sons of God.  In position, we are saints of God.  But by voluntary submission we become servants of God.
3rd, Is it possible that the full understanding of the book of Revelation is only given to those who have voluntarily become servants of Christ, for “He showed it unto His servants.”  Perhaps that is why this book is closed to so many Christians?  Something to consider!

     B. John’s Testimony (v2)

        1. John could bare record (“give testimony; affirm what he heard & saw” as true and complete) because of the Source of that record

            a. Of the Word of God (“the divine Logos--Christ) (Person)

            b. Of the testimony of Jesus Christ (“the divine Witness--Christ) (Words)

            c. Of all things he saw (Works)

 Note:  Let there be no mistake about the Authority and Authentication of the book of Revelation.  This book and all it contains, whether you understand it or believe it, was a direct revelation from almighty God through Jesus Christ to the apostle John. It could be no less than a divine revelation, for the human mind cannot absorb the enormity of the calamity that is about to befall this earth and sinful mankind, and, therefore, it must be assured that the messenger and the message is from God.

  III. How You Will Gain Blessedness (v3)

      A. Act on the promise!  You will experience a state of blessedness if:

           1. You (individually (sing.)) that read (“to know accurately”) the words of this prophecy; because reading turns to studying (he that will not read is no better off than he that cannot read)  (example “servant”)

           2. You (congregationally (plural)) that hear (“to attend to, to understand, to learn by hearing”) the words of this prophecy; because hearing turns to studying   (example “servant”)

           3. You (collectively (plural)) that keep (“guard, take care of, fulfill”) those things that are written therein; because studying sets God’s Word in your soul  (application to life)

 Note: All three are present tense/continuous action.

       B. Appropriate the promise now

          1. For the time (time period covered by Revelation) is at hand (at the door). Be ready!

 Concl:  1st, The state of being blessed is promised, in this passage, to those that are servants of Jesus Christ.  Are you?  If not, when will you become a servant of Christ? 

“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.”

   The state of being blessed is promised, in this passage, to those that read, hear and keep the things written in Revelation.  One of the great blessings of this book is that you can know the future, and therefore, adjust your present.  You can prioritize your life based on the future revealed by God.

“And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”

   Read the book, attend to preaching and teaching from the book, and keep what you learn from the book as your present contribution to your eternal future.

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