Flowers are blooming, birds are chirping, the grass is this vivid, oh-so-alive color and I’m reading… about fire and pestilence and death. Welcome! 🙂 Crystal and I are currently reading and blogging through Revelation. I never know quite what to make of this particular book and am looking forward to her insights (no pressure, friend).
I’m not going to go point by point through my notes because we’d be here a very long time. Actually, in the interest of full disclosure, I didn’t make any because I’m trying to read for big picture. A few details did catch me this time through, though, so I’ll give you two detail paragraphs and then a broader impressions paragraph.
First, the first few chapters are devoted to specific churches, addressing their merits and failures and urging them to be true. I’m a little embarrassed to admit this, but I never recognized that those letters are not, fact, addressed to the churches but to the angels of the churches. That made me wonder if the promises of reward for doing well in each letter were intended for the people of the churches or the angels.
The other big thing was the war in heaven referenced in Revelation 12:7. This access that the devil seems to have to heaven is curious to me. I remember having similar questions while reading Job. And if he can get up there, can he affect or tempt the people who reside there? The idea of violence in heaven is so contrary to the heaven in my head.
The overall reflection this reading led me to might seem off-topic. I’m going to ramble here and I apologize. Reading Revelation got me thinking about what happens when we write something down. The thing we’re writing about often becomes… romanticized or diluted. I mean, I could write about a terrible, flat time in my life with words that would make it sound almost appealing. Words add drama and color. We read about wars, for example, and we get political background, read some personal stories and maybe those words give an impression of purpose and energy and drama. But I wonder. If our current situation is any indication, I’d say wartimes are, in fact, full of anxiety, depression, struggling to find purpose and just the usual busyness of day-to-day living. Other times, the full impact and pain could never be adequately expressed. When I’ve done something wrong, giving the thing words takes away some of the sting. I’m not bragging, by the way. It’s a form of justification that can be really dangerous. After all that, what I’m really wondering is whether the events detailed in Revelation will seem as dramatic and recognizable and all-consuming when they happen. How will people handle it? I think there’s an idea out there that everything will stop when the apocalypse begins to unfold. But people will still go to sleep and wake up. They’ll still eat and get dressed and worry about their kids.
What will it be like?