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Revelation 1:12–18 KJV 1900
12 And I turned to see the voice that spake with me. And being turned, I saw seven golden candlesticks; 13 And in the midst of the seven candlesticks one like unto the Son of man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle. 14 His head and his hairs were white like wool, as white as snow; and his eyes were as a flame of fire; 15 And his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and his voice as the sound of many waters. 16 And he had in his right hand seven stars: and out of his mouth went a sharp twoedged sword: and his countenance was as the sun shineth in his strength. 17 And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last: 18 I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.


Fox’s book of martyrs tells us that John, as a very old man was boiled alive in oil, but survived.
The Romans were so sick of him and his witness.
They were so confused by his survival (supposedly without injury) that they didn’t know what to do with him.
So, they exiled the old man to the tiny Mediterranean island called Patmos.
As John began his new life in exile, he was worshipping and communing with God on a Sunday when he heard a voice behind him.
John, of course, turned to see who’s voice it was that spoke to him.
In verse 12 we get a detailed description of what he saw.

The man John saw.

Before John notices the person that spoke to him, he first sees 7 golden candlesticks.
We would learn, if we kept reading that these are the 7 churches of Asia.
These are 7 unique candlesticks; not one candlestick with 7 branches.
The churches of Asia are not connected by government or polity.
They are connected by their common source, which is of course, Jesus.
Speaking of Jesus, in the midst of the candlesticks there stands a familiar figure.
John knew it was Jesus the moment He appeared in this glorious vision.
John knew Jesus well on earth.
In many respects He seemed different from what John remembered of Him.
But, he knew who this was.
It’s interesting that the exalted Jesus is the same in all essentials as the lowly Jesus.
John Identifies the individual as one that was like unto the son of man.
The son of man is not the same greek phrase that Jesus used to describe himself in the gospels.
In English, it is the same, but in the greek it is a different phrase.
It is a greek translation of something from the Old Testament.
It is the same as the phrase Daniel used in Daniel 7:13
Daniel 7:13 KJV 1900
13 I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before him.
What John is doing here, is supporting the truth that Jesus and God the Father are one.
He is drawing a connection between Jesus and Jehovah.
They are one and the same.

John then proceeds to detail the appearance of Jesus, and it is unimaginable.

Jesus, in His glorified appearance is simultaneously awesome and comforting.
Even with John’s details, it is doubtful that you and I can properly picture how imposing Jesus looks in this passage.
His fully glorified and unmistakably divine.
During His earthly ministry many could have walked by Jesus and not noticed Him.
No one can look at the glorified Jesus and not immediately recognize His glory.
His clothes - clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle
The long garment and golden girdle point to high priestly service.
The robe is an indication of the dignity of Jesus.
He is not humbled and poor.
He is glorified and dignified.
Jesus isn’t walking around heaven looking like a carpenter.
He is robed as a king and a priest.
The golden clasp was reserved only for royalty.
The girdle is a symbol of work.
What kind of work could Jesus do?
Wasn’t His work completed on the cross?
His people need Him and He doesn’t expect us to go in our own strength.
His hair - His head and his hairs were white like wool, as white as snow
Wool white hair connects Jesus again to the Ancient of Days (the Jehovah of Israel) in Daniel 7:9
Daniel 7:9 KJV 1900
9 I beheld till the thrones were cast down, and the Ancient of days did sit, whose garment was white as snow, and the hair of his head like the pure wool: his throne was like the fiery flame, and his wheels as burning fire.
Wool white hair could point to wisdom.
Paul speaks of the manifold wisdom of God in Ephesians 3.
Which is a beautiful phrase we will look at on Sunday.
It can also point to regality and authority.
His eyes - and his eyes were as a flame of fire
Eyes aflame, just like we see of God in Daniel 10:6
Daniel 10:6 KJV 1900
6 His body also was like the beryl, and his face as the appearance of lightning, and his eyes as lamps of fire, and his arms and his feet like in colour to polished brass, and the voice of his words like the voice of a multitude.
Fire is a revealer of hidden things.
1 Corinthians 3 tells us that our works will be tried by fire.
You cannot hide from the all-seeing gaze of Jesus.
The fire also indicates the wrath of God against evil.
Think about this.
The first time you meet with God, you must meet Him with all your sins upon your soul exposed.
If your first meeting is on the judgment day, it will be too late.
You can have your first meeting with Him in this world.
His feet - And his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace
This is the hardest description to picture.
The phrase “like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace” comes from a single greek word that is made up of several roots that literally put together mean “like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace.”
There is very little agreement as to what this means.
No doubt John’s readers would have known immediately.
Imagine Jesus’ feet as running, flowing, molten metal.
We know that brass is a picture of judgment.
Here we see Jesus ability and authority to tread down His enemies.
His voice - and his voice as the sound of many waters
His voice is as the sound of the billows of the sea.
On Patmos, that tiny little island, John was never out of the sound of the crashing waves.
The great and mighty ships are as nothing to the power of the sea.
Jesus’ voice is a voice of power.
We see this in the Old Testament, too. Ezekiel 43:2
Ezekiel 43:2 KJV 1900
2 And, behold, the glory of the God of Israel came from the way of the east: and his voice was like a noise of many waters: and the earth shined with his glory.
Imagine arguing with Niagara Falls.
Coming in at 87 decibels.
It’s as loud as a lion’s roar.

There is a slight shift as John gives some detail about the activities of Jesus and their affect.

He holds seven stars - And he had in his right hand seven stars
The seven starts are later explained to be the angels/messengers/pastors of the seven churches.
Jesus is not only standing in the midst of His churches, but He is also holding the pastors of these churches in His hand.
These stars are His property.
So too are the lamps.
Whether you’re a pastor or a church member we both have a responsibility to remember this truth.
The church belongs to God, not to the pastor.
The pastor belongs to God, not to the church.
He wields the sword of the word of God - and out of his mouth went a sharp twoedged sword
This is not, as you may picture, a Roman soldier’s short sword.
This is specifically described as a great, long, and heavy sword.
The kind of sword that required 2 hands to wield.
A sword that was often nearly as tall as a man.
Of course, this speaks of the power of the word of God.
With a word the world’s were made.
The word is alive and powerful.
The word is sharper than a twoedged sword.
It is revealer and exposer of the thoughts and intents of the heart.
He shines as the sun - and his countenance was as the sun shineth in his strength.
Paul saw the brightness of Jesus’ countenance on the road to Damascus.
We know the impact that that interaction had on Paul and the rest of human history.
Remember, from Sunday night, we said that a person’s countenance included the whole of their appearance.
Upon seeing this, John becomes as a dead man.
This was not a reaction of love.
It was a reaction of fear.
It doesn’t mean that John consciously prostrated himself.
It means he crumpled into a heap like someone shot by an invisible high speed bullet.
Jesus speaks.
Fear not literally means stop being afraid.
Was John afraid of the sight of Jesus?
Yes, certainly.
But, could there have been
Jesus details the entirety of His existence,
He was eternally alive in history past.
He came to earth and died for us.
He did not remain dead, He is alive again and forever.
Now, He has the authority, He has conquered man’s greatest threats and enemies.
Physical death has been conquered.
Hades has been conquered.
Hades has been said to be the place of disembodied spirits.
The NT authors always use the word Hades to refer to the place of the damned.
Think about all that we have seen in this passage and combine it with what we see of Jesus in the gospels.
The heart that beats beneath the golden girdle is the same that melted with pity and overflowed with love.
The hands that bear the seven stars are those that were pierced by the nails of the cross.
The eyes that blaze are the eyes that wept.
Jesus carries all the love, gentleness, and sympathy of the gospels into the blaze of deity.
And in His glory we see that He is still our brother.


If you belong to Jesus than this view of Him should have the affect that Jesus’ words had on John.
Stop being afraid.
As much as I love, love, love the Chosen, we need to realize that that is not a depiction of Jesus today.
What John saw, that is our Jesus.
He is not poor, He is not hampered by a human body that needs food, sleep, and time.
He is glorified and all-powerful, and fully clothed in all of His divine power.
What do we have to fear when we have a relationship with this Jesus?
What is too hard for this Jesus to accomplish?
Jesus can be trusted with your eternity.
Jesus can be trusted with your relationships.
Jesus can be trusted with you doubts and weaknesses.
This picture of Jesus shows us the power and benefits of a God that is in touch with what it is like to be us.
This picture of Jesus also helps us understand and appreciate what Jesus set aside to come to earth as a man.
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