Blessed Reading, Blessed Hearing

Read: Revelation 1:1-3

Blessed is the one who reads . . . and blessed are those who hear, and who keep what is written in it. (v. 3)

The first word of the book of Revelation is . . . “revelation.” It’s an unveiling of what’s going to happen, of how the world will end. Jesus sent an angel to pass this message on to John so that all of us (“his servants,” v. 1) can know it too.

Think of John as he appeared now at the end of the New Testament. At this point he was a very old man; all the other apostles were gone—martyrs for the sake of the gospel. Now, no doubt, John’s body was worn out, his eyesight dimmed, his hearing faded. But spiritually John’s senses were as keen as ever. John’s symbol in the church was the far-sighted eagle. His spiritual sight penetrated to the highest heaven, his vision extended to the end of time. Don’t think of him, though, as some sort of seer or prophet. Think of him as a journalist. John called himself a “martyr,” in the original sense of that Greek word—a witness. John wasn’t making this stuff up. He simply recorded what the angel showed him, in a book that can be read and heard and obeyed.

This raises a question. What do you think of the Bible? Is it just a product of the religious imagination, or is it a revelation from God, given through human witnesses? Blessed are those who read it as the latter, and who hear and keep it accordingly. —David Bast

As you pray, praise God for his Word.

About the Author

Rev. Dave Bast retired as the President and Broadcast Minister of Words of Hope in January 2017, after 23 years with the ministry. Prior to his ministry and work at Words of Hope, Dave served as a pastor for 18 years in congregations in the Reformed Church in America. He is the author of several devotional books. A graduate of Hope College and Western Theological Seminary, he has also studied at both the Fuller and Calvin seminaries. Dave and his wife, Betty Jo, have four children and four grandchildren. Dave enjoys reading, growing tomatoes, and avidly follows the Detroit Tigers.

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