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Summary of the Book of Revelation: Numbers and Symbols

In Articles by Aaron Cozort

In biblical literature, there is a term that has come forth from the very essence of the book of Revelation, and that is “apocalyptic literature.”  (Note: the word revelation “apocolypsis” is where the english word Apocalypse comes from).  Apocalyptic literature uses figurative language where objects and numbers are often to be understood symbolically instead of literally or physically. Some of those in Revelation are 6, 7, 12, and 1000. The scope of these articles do not allow an in-depth analysis of these terms, but here’s an overview of a few significant numbers in Revelation.  Notice just the use of the number 7: 7 Churches, 7 Spirits, 7 golden candlesticks, 7 stars, 7 lamps, 7 seals, 7 horns, 7 eyes, 7 angels, 7 trumpets, 7 thunders, 7 (thousand) people, 7 heads, 7 crowns, 7 last plagues, 7 golden vials, 7 mountains, 7 kings. When we look into the text, we get this indication: 7 is a number indicating fullness, completeness, or perfection (often connected to God). 6 is the number that falls short of 7, it is incomplete, imperfect (often the number of “man”). 12 is a number indicating authorized religion.  12 patriarchs of the old testament, 12 tribes of Israel, 12 apostles. Multiples of a significant number are used to indicate a thorough or completeness of that symbol’s concept.  A single 6 indicates coming short of perfection (falling short of God), but 666 indicates complete failure, an entirely fallen state, the essence of disobedient sinful mankind. 1000 is often multiplied …

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Summary of the Book of Revelation: Chapter 4

In Articles by Aaron Cozort

The Throne Room of God John, having delivered Jesus’ message to the churches, is brought deeper into the vision.  He sees an open door in Heaven.  Note that John doesn’t speak of these things as if they are fantasy.  It is a vision, but visions of a real place, albeit a spiritual one. Be careful to understand that the book of Revelation is largely symbolical (it conveys meaning using symbols), but the symbols almost always connect with real people, places, and things. Back to Revelation. Upon being invited “Come up here, and I will show you things which must take place after this,” John enters the door and the very throne room of God.  He sees a throne, and One on the throne (God).  The description that follows is a magnificent throne room that could be unmatched by any earthly king. Interestingly, the one on the throne is never directly described.  Only his “appearance” (vs. 3). Even in the very presence of Jehovah, there are no human words to describe Jehovah himself. In front of the throne: The seven lamps which are the Seven Spirits of God. See the connection to the golden lampstand in the tabernacle (read Exodus 25:31-40; 37:17-24). Around the throne: 24 elders who are righteous rulers together with 4 living creatures.  The creatures are mighty, have the swiftness of flight, and see everything (there is a connection to Ezekiel 1 here). Coming from the throne: lightnings, thundering, voices.  Go read Exodus 19:9-24; 20:18-21.  John sees something …

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Your Faith is Founded upon Understanding

In Devotionals by Aaron Cozort

Ever stand on sand that moves underneath you? Its hard to stay in one place when your foundation is unsteady. Our faith must be founded on something stronger. Understanding — Divine Understanding revealed in Scripture. Learn more. Text: Acts 17 Location: Collierville Church of Christ For more from Aaron, visit www.cozort.org For more from Collierville Church of Christ, Visit www.colliervillecoc.org

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Summary of the Book of Revelation: Chapter 3

In Articles by Aaron Cozort

The Dead, The Faithful, the Sickening To Sardis: An assembly with a false reputation.  They think they are a living body of Christ, but Jesus pronounced them dead.  Christians among them are still alive, but without repentance, He is coming with unexpected judgment.  Those whose garments are unsoiled will receive their reward. Promise: To the overcomer – white robes, a name in the Book of Life & their name confessed by Christ (cf. Mat. 10:32). To Philadelphia: An assembly with an open door that no man could shut. Neither humanity nor spiritual beings can overcome the purposes and actions of God.  This church is going through the wringer.  More persecution is coming, but the faithful have a crown awaiting. Promise: To the overcomer – become a pillar in the Temple of God & names written on him. To Laodicea: An assembly that makes God sick.  Apathy reigns in this church.  Prosperity physically, and wretchedness spiritually.  They have an eye affliction; they are blind, deceived by wealth and oblivious to the truth.  Christ is rebuking them, will they repent? He is knocking, will they open? Promise: To the overcomer – a seat with Christ on the throne for the overcomer like Him. “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.” Next week: The Throne Room of God.

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Priesthood: Sacrificing Daily Or Once for All Time

In Devotionals by Aaron Cozort

If you were a priest of the Israelite nation, your days were filled with sacrifices, sacrifices, and more sacrifices. But Jesus made a sacrifice once for all time. Find out more as Aaron offers a brief devotional thought on the sacrifice of Christ. Text: Hebrews 9:28 For more from Aaron, visit: www.cozort.org. For more from the Collierville Church of Christ, visit: www.colliervillecoc.org.

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Summary of the Book of Revelation: Chapter 2

In Articles by Aaron Cozort

The Double-Edged Sword Comes Forth A double-edged sword is a description given to the speaking of the word of God from the mouth of Jesus Christ (“The First and the Last …he who lives, and was dead, and… am alive forevermore” – 1:17-18). When Jesus speaks, there will be a separation, an action–an attack against all that is unholy, and protection for all that is holy.  He will speak to the messengers (angels) of the churches, and His words will divide, instruct, rebuke, correct, admonish, and commend. To Ephesus: An “assembly” (church) that labored, endured, and couldn’t stand evil just like their Heavenly Father.  They held to sound doctrine and true apostolic authority.  They had fought without giving up… but, they had lost the most important thing, the reason for doing it all.  Their first love–the Father.  They needed to repent, to return to the first works of Christianity, to return to the love of God (but not cease their other labors.) Promise: To the overcomer – eternal food (cf. John 4:10, 13). To Smyrna: An assembly of the poor, but rich in spiritual things. The “poor church” is defenseless, but God defends them. The “poor church” will suffer, but God will not fail to notice their persecution. The “poor church” will be thrown in prison, and some will die, but God has their reward waiting. Promise: To the overcomer – no second death (cf. 1:18; 2:8). To Pergamos: An assembly dwelling in the stronghold of Satan, in the bowels …