Revelation 1:9 (NKJV) 9I, John, both your brother and companion in the tribulation and kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was on the island that is called Patmos for the word of God and for the testimony of Jesus Christ.
John just didn’t stop at calling himself their brother – but went on to say that he was their companion in tribulation
companion – Greek – sunkoinonos– a compound of the words sun and koinonia – it means a partnership or cooperation
Paul used the word sun in II Corinthians 6:1 where he stated that we are co-workers together with God
The wording there that Paul used sunergos– implies that two or more workers who are joined for a common cause or project! it no longer is what one worker does by himself but what one accomplishes through a partnership and working together in cooperation with others.
John in Revelation 1:9 uses this to state the partnership and cooperation the kinship that he felt with the readers of Revelation.
He places it there in the scripture to eliminate the idea that they were the only people that were going through some stuff. He brings comfort and states that I am your partner in the same experiences, “I am facing the same things that you are facing right now”.
In other words, I understand the pressure that is being applied to you. The Pressure to back up off of what you believe, the temptation to give up, quit, pack up and get out of dodge. I get what you’re going through because I’m going through the same things.
When a leader steps out and gets down and real with the people it eliminates the guilt, condemnation, and the lonely thoughts, that you are alone in trial and tribulation. It removes the thought that somehow what you are going through is because of something you have done. You are being persecuted, and being tested because of what Christ has done in your life. Your physical life is being pressured for the destiny of the eternal man.
The devil would kill you if he could, but he cannot. Therefore, he needs you to believe his lies so that you will give him what he cannot take, and what he cannot keep.
John was experiencing exactly what they were going through. John had been boiled in oil and then sent to the isle of Patmos. Patmos was the deserted prison island. John was sent there for eighteen months. John was now an elderly man at the time of the writing, he had a doctorate degree in suffering. He was a man speaking from experience. John survived all he had faced, even the most difficult situations, and kept his faith. John had a right to speak to others and tell them don’t give up, but keep fighting.
John went on to write not only was he their brother and companion in tribulation, but also in the kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ.
The word kingdom is a Greek word “basileia”a word that speaks of a ruler, ruling power, or a kingdom.
The Romans had their basilicas, they were the places that ruling decisions were carried out by authorities. Over time large cathedrals were called basilica’s, because they were the important places where spiritual authorities carried out rulings that affected entire regions.
John is writing here to declare that even though they were partners in tribulation they were also apart in the kingdom of God. They are seeing persecution, but they have also seen in the region of Asia Minor, the most pagan area, the advancement of the kingdom of God. The entire region had seen a mighty demonstration of the kingdom of God.
They saw the men of God take the light of the gospel into the darkest of places. The book of Acts is filled with actions of the Apostles taking the gospel and establishing the Kingdom of God at the very gates of hell and prevailing. Acts describes and records healings, miracles, demonic deliverances, and the repentance of the masses, as the Gospel of Jesus Christ is brought into their region. They had seen the paganist turn to be a Christ lover, from the scrolls and divinations to the Word of God. They knew that the church of Jesus Christ was brought in and had risen in the power of the Holy Spirit, and they also knew that the church had risen up throughout the land not by enticing words, but by demonstration and power with spiritual authority.
John is reminding them, not only have we suffered together, but we also have exercised our spiritual authority together.
Lest we forget the victories because of the trials, we should constantly remind ourselves of the testimony that we have because of the blood of Jesus. I am not who I could be because of the blood, thank God for the wonder working power of the blood of Jesus.
Yes, we share in some trials, but we also share in great victories as well. In times that we are going through it, remind yourself of the times that you came through it.
Never lose sight of the great things that God has done for you and through you.
I want to remind you as John reminded his readers that you have seen and have known that power of the kingdom of God. Just as much as there is a mutual experience in suffering, likewise there is a mutual experience in the victory.
It is because of the mutual experience that we must hang on, never give up, and keep fighting. Therefore, John included in his writing to them that they were co-workers in the kingdom and then he states that also in the patience of Jesus Christ.
For a sustained ruling of God’s kingdom, it requires patience.
What does patience mean and why must we see the ruling power of God?
patience = Greek word = hupomene: which is two Greek words brought together = hupo and meno –
hupo meaning under
meno meaning to abide or stay
This is referring to a resolute decision that one will move from the position or stance!
Now when those two words are brought together and form a compound word – the meaning changes dramatically.
hupo = meaning one who is under a heavy load or circumstance that would normally cause a person to bend or break – or to change position in order to escape the terrible circumstances or the pressures.
meno – meaning to abide – as used in the term that John used it portrays a person that is absolutely committed to what they believe and to the position that he holds dear and true. regardless of the pressure that is mounted against them – he refuses to move or to surrender. He will stick to his position, and he will stay put.
The more accurate translation is the word endurance – depicting one’s ability to outlast hard times.
One scholar stated it this way: “When hupomene is working in an individual’s life it gives him the supernatural ability to remain steadfast and to never surrender his position or beliefs, even in the face of insurmountable challenges and stress.
The intense persecution and resistance that the early church received made patience the queen of all virtues. The early church had to have resolve and endurance, to never give up and never give in.
John said, I was on the isle of Patmos, you think you’ve got it bad, but I’m on the isle of Patmos –
Why am I here? For the word of God and the Testimony of Jesus Christ –
John refused to worship the emperor! More than likely John was convicted of high treason for undermining the state religion, which was the worship of the emperor
When John preached the Lordship and the Kingship of Jesus Christ – he then faced the accusation of propagating a false religion and encouraging the worship of someone other than the emperor! These crimes especially during the reign of Emperor DOMITIAN were met with extreme consequences.
John was the last of the surviving members of Jesus’ first twelve. Domitian had long hated the Christians for their refusal to worship him (Sound Familiar – see Esther and the story of Haaman – the issue is always worship).
So John being one of the original twelve more than likely provided a greater incentive to Domitian to arrest him and attack him. This was the ultimate censorship, kill the voice of the apostles.
If you kill the voice of the apostles then you weaken the other offices of the ministry, because the apostle touches the pastors, prophets, teachers, and the evangelists. If you can weaken the church it is just as effective as destroying the church!
If the church is weak, we might as well go home! The church was birthed in power not money!
The church was birthed in power not politics!
They (Peter and John) stated silver and gold have we none, but such as we have, give I unto thee.
Now the church states we have silver and gold, but power we have none!
Well, not in this house! This is a place where the kingdom the authority and the power of God works and is available to you and to all that believe.
So John was their Brother, companion, and was refusing to give up, even on the isle of Patmos, because he stood for the word of God and the Testimony of Jesus Christ !
Revelation 1:10-11 (NKJV) 10I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s Day, and I heard behind me a loud voice, as of a trumpet, 11saying, “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last,” and, “What you see, write in a book and send itto the seven churches which are in Asia: to Ephesus, to Smyrna, to Pergamos, to Thyatira, to Sardis, to Philadelphia, and to Laodicea.”
Some say the Revelation happened in the mine quarries on Patmos. Others state that it was in the cave that John called home on the isle of Patmos! Regardless of the where, we are given an insight into the how the revelation came to John!
John stated this in Revelation – 1:10
I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s Day
The word that was used in the verse, is the Greek word “ginomai”, describing something that happens unexpectedly or something that would catch you off guard.
This speaks to the fact that John wasn’t expecting to have a divine encounter. He was just going about his business of survival on the isle of Patmos and then something happened that caught him by surprise, in a way that he never expected, he suddenly found himself “in the spirit”!
The King James Version of the bible has the word Spirit capitalized, however, in the original Greek writing it is not capitalized ( Greek- en pnuematic).The term means to be caught up into another realm, another dimension, or a spiritual realm far different then that of the natural world.
When John experienced this Revelation, he tells you this! I was just going about my business going through the trial of my life, and then all of a sudden, the unexpected happened in my life! I was caught up into another dimension on the Lord’s Day.
Now because of our culture stating that Sunday is the Lord’s Day we automatically assume that this means Sunday!
The phrase here that John uses is the term “kuriakos”– it was a specific word that they used to describe their emperor day! This word was used anytime that they wanted to designate something imperial, and they had set aside the first day of the month as an imperial day. On this day the emperor was especially celebrated. This was the emperor’s day!
On the day that the entire roman empire was celebrating, and giving honor to the supposed deity the emperor Domitian. The day that the entire world was worshipping a fraudulent, evil human ruler! The true ruler, the King of kings, the Lord of lords stepped forth on the emperor’s day and revealed Himself as the one who truly was the deity, who truly was worthy to be worshipped.
It had to strike John that on the emperor’s day, that Jesus Christ stepped onto a forsaken island to an exiled worshipper, and revealed Himself in all of His glory to the exiled one.
Maybe you are here today, and you feel that everybody has left you, and everybody else is worshipping other things, that you have become exiled to a forsaken place.
I’m here to tell you that. Yes, even in the forsaken places, Jesus Christ will step onto the scene and reveal Himself to you! Even when you feel forsaken and trapped by the circumstances of your life, Jesus Christ will reveal himself to you.
And you like John can say. I wasn’t expecting it. I was just going through the motions of my day trying to survive, and then suddenly the unexpected happened I wound up in the spirit on the Lord’s day!
Jesus Reveals Himself and then speaks.
It is important for us to know that it is not enough just to see Jesus, but you must also Hear the Word of the Lord for they are one in the same. Understand John 1:1 in the beginning was the word, the word was with God and the Word was God.
A lot of people stop with seeing Jesus. You also need to hear and then obey the words. For man shall not live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.
John said I heard behind me a great voice. Not just a voice ,but a great voice!
John said it was so loud that it was like a trumpet! A clear loud blast of the trumpet commanding attention and requiring submission from the one speaking.
Now that Jesus had John’s attention, he then announced Himself!
I love the opening lines of Jesus to John.
Revelation 1:11 – I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last….
Alpha the first letter in the Greek alphabet and Omega the last letter in the alphabet. We often end with it just meaning that, but it was a phrase that was used to convey eternity and timelessness!
When God speaks He is telling what has already happened, He’s just waiting for you to catch up to it.
Jesus was saying to John! I am eternal and timeless!
I am the beginning of everything!
I am also the conclusion of everything!
Not only am I the beginning and the ending, but I also encompass everything that lies between the beginning and the ending!
That’s why He could say, “Lo, I am with you always…”.
Matthew 28:20 (NKJV) 20teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, evento the end of the age.” Amen.
Further He stated that I will never leave you, but I will be with you, until the ends of the world! No matter where you find yourself I am going to be right there with you…
I am with you always, no matter the circumstance maybe in your life! I am right here! The enemy thought that he could put you on an island all by yourself. Maybe man cannot reach you but I can! He put you here to destroy you to break you, but this is where I am going to Reveal myself to you.
Romans 8:28 (NKJV) 28And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to Hispurpose.
He meant it for evil, but I am going to give you a revelation here John! The things that you see, write them down in a book! Keep a record of what I tell you, because my word will go out and it will accomplish what it was sent out to accomplish!
The enemy may have put you in the circumstances, but even in the darkest of circumstances God can reveal himself to you and thereby give you a revelation. When He speaks you can write it down in a book for all the world to see that God has spoken and He has the final say over the beginning and the ending of my life along with everything in between.
What you are about to experience John you need to write down in a book –
unto the seven churches which were in Asia – Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamos, Thyatria, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea.
He said write it down and then send it to these seven churches.
At the time of the writing there were roughly 1000 cities in Asia Minor.
These seven were the largest and the most pagan, but they also had the largest congregations and the most influence then the other churches in Asia Minor.
To each of these seven churches Jesus specifically stated that “I know thy works…”
As Jesus is delivering his messages to John about the 7 churches it becomes very apparent that He is intricately knowledgeable about these seven churches. Jesus is very familiar with these seven churches in such a manner that in His delivering of the message to John, He specifically calls out one church member. He described a problem that one pastor had with his wife. It ought to speak to us. That Jesus, even though no one had seen him arrive at the front door of the church, had walked the aisles of the church and was very familiar with the spiritual condition of each church and each individual that was a part of the church.
Now here is a part that I love. Before Jesus continued with delivering his message to the churches. He continues to reveal Himself to John, this is the disciple whom He loved. (John 19:26). This revealing or the Revelation was so powerful that as it began, John fell at His feet (v17).
In verse twelve John turned to see the voice! Certainly, John had never forgotten the sound of that voice! How could he have ever forgotten that voice? It was the voice of the one that loved him, that died for him, that called him out, it was the voice of the Savior. How could you ever forget that voice, the voice of Jesus?
John describes His response as soon as He heard that voice. He turned.
There was something about this voice!
Voice is the word, “phone” a word simply describes a voice.
He turned to see it! Now can you really see a voice?
The word “see” is the Greek word – “blepo”. Which means to see, to watch, to look at, to give attention to, to pay heed to, or to perceive.
When John Heard this voice. He perceived something special about the sound, the voice that was speaking to Him from behind and he eagerly turned around to see who was speaking to him.
Now John hadn’t heard this voice in nearly 60 years, but he had never forgotten that sound of the Master’s voice!
John in his younger years had listened to the voice of Jesus teach. He also had been lead for nearly 3 1/2 years as one of Jesus’ twelve and he knew that voice. John carried the words, and the love for Jesus with Him in his heart.
Even though John was now older in His years, he was still deeply touched by the love that he had received from Jesus.
Watch what John wrote to his readers about this love of Jesus…
1 John 1:1-3 (KJV) 1That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life; 2(For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us;) 3That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship iswith the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ.
John was remembering the touch of Jesus’ hands, and the look that was in his eye, And John states this – the words “we have heard” – Oh, I can still hear the words, the sound of His voice, when He called me out. The words, the hands, and look of Jesus upon His life had lasted John for over 60 years, he had held those precious memories close to his heart, looking for that day – when he would once again see the Lord, hear the Lord, and feel the touch of the master’s hand.
So when John heard it – he knew it, he never forgot the words of the Lord to him, and as soon as He heard it – he turned around.
As soon as John turned around to follow the sound of that voice that sounded like a trumpet, the barrier between the natural world, and the realm of the spirit, was suddenly removed.
I heard a voice as a sound of a trumpet – I wasn’t expecting it – but when I turned around – I was translated into another realm.
1 Thessalonians 4:14-18 (KJV) 14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. 15For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive andremain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. 16For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 17Then we which are alive andremain 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. 18Wherefore comfort one another with these words.
It was at that moment that John saw Jesus.
But what He saw wasn’t the same person that He had carried in his mind – the voice was the same, but the physical appearance of Jesus was dramatically different then the thirty three year old man that had risen from the dead and showed himself to be alive. This was not the Jesus he had known during his earthly walk, but now He is seeing Him. Seeing Him in His role as King and Priest.
John wrote that (13) that he saw “One like the Son of Man”
The phrase, “like unto the Son of Man” the words “like unto” are a translation of the Greek word “homoios”which describes a resemblance similarity, or likeness.
Jesus had been transformed from His earthly appearance – and stood before the apostle as the glorified Christ. The One that was standing among the seven golden candlesticks had a likeness, a similarity, and a resemblance of Jesus the way that John remembered Him, yet completely different.
Many state that the vision of Jesus that John received is an allusion to what Daniel seen in…
Daniel 7:13 (KJV) 13I saw in the night visions, and, behold, onelike the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before him.
Proving that without a doubt – He is the one who was and is and is come – Daniel seen and heard Him, John seen and Heard Him. No doubt, that you likewise that have heard Him call your name, when You hear Him call your name you shall likewise see Him, the one who was and is and is to come.