November 22, 2008 on 6:17 pm | In REVELATION FOR BEGINNERS | Comments Off on THE LORD’S DAY IN REVELATION–1:10

Which day is it? Does it really matter? Why is it even mentioned here at the beginning of the book? What does it mean to be “in the spirit”? Are these expressions just incidental to the story or do they have special significance?
Revelation 1:10 states: “ I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s Day, and I heard behind me a loud voice, as of a trumpet,… Does the trumpet suggest anything? Let’s take a closer look.

First, I want to say up front that these issues(“in the spirit”/spirit of prophecy, Lord’s Day) will become more prominent later in the book of Revelation and at the end time, even becoming quite controversial. So their introduction at this point is not haphazard. But I will leave the details for later on, perhaps even starting another category or two at some point.
But for now, first of all, what does “in the spirit” mean? Simply put, it means John was having a visionary experience. For example, in chapter 4:1, 2, John refers to the “voice like a trumpet” again, then immediately follows it by saying “Immediately I was in the Spirit; and behold,…” In chapter 17:3 it states “he carried me away in the Spirit into the wilderness.” I talked in an earlier blog about these visionary experiences that prophets had, almost like a “virtual reality” experience, like seeing and experiencing something that appeared on the mental visual screen but was not happening in reality. Later (Rev. 19:10) we’ll see the term “spirit of prophecy,” which will be important at the end. More later, perhaps another category sometime.
What about the “Lord’s Day”? How you interpret that depends on whether you use the Bible’s definition or on how the term was used in later years. In later years and even still today, probably most Christians have used it to refer to Sunday, the first day of the week. Our position in this presentation has been to see what the Bible has to say before looking elsewhere. So here goes. The exact term is not used elsewhere in the Bible. The Bible reference that comes closest to using that term is Matthew 12:8: “For the Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath.” (NASB) Exodus 20:10 states explicitly that “the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God.” You do not see this kind of statement make about any other day of the week. I remember being in discussion with a professor of a local Bible college who acknowledged that if we were going to use the Bible only to explain that term, the Bible Sabbath is what we would come up with. Why would this concept be important to Revelation? Perhaps because the 10 commandments would fall into disrepute in some Christian circles in the end time and also because the Sabbath strikes against the heart of evolutionary theory, which denies the role of the Creator as described in Genesis 1. The Sabbath is a call to remember the Creator: “For in six days the Lord made the heavens and he earth,…” Ex. 20:11 That issue is a hot topic even today, especially in our educational systems, as well as in many churches. While these topics can be sometimes controversial, it will be well for us to more closely investigate them in a cordial spirit to see what the real truth is.

As far as the voice like a trumpet is concerned, it could be simply associated with an important announcement of information or arrival of an important person (like our fanfares). It was certainly both on this occasion. It could also be a reminder of the trumpet blown before the giving of the 10 commandments (Exodus 19:16) or of the trumpets blown before the Day of Atonement (Leviticus 23:24) which was considered the day of judgment for the Jewish religious cycle. That could be an allusion to the day of judgment in Revelation and for our time as well.

It appears obvious that the messages being brought to John are so important to God that He makes a personal appearance to introduce them. This also suggests we should give them our close attention, for they likely have a strong bearing on our walk with God, as well as enlightening us regarding God’s dealings with mankind during these last days. And remember, if He didn’t care deeply and intensely about us, He wouldn’t bother. But He loved us enough to send His only Son to die in our place, that ultimately we might have a home with Him for eternity.

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