Part 1 of 7



01…God's Great Disclosure of Himself
02…Christ's Message to the Seven Churches
03…The Open Door into Heaven
04…The Significance of the Sealed Book
05…The Four Horsemen
06…Who Are the 144,000?
07…Accumulated Woes upon Earth
08…The Open Book
09…The New Temple and the Two Witnesses
10…The Woman and the Dragon
11…The Mysterious Beast
12…What Does the Image of the Beast Mean?
13…Victory and Judgment
14…The Battle of Armageddon
15…The Judgment of Mystery Babylon
16…The Final Fall and Ruin of Babylon
17…The Hallelujah Chorus in Heaven
18…The Scriptural Millennium
19…The Great White Throne Judgment
20…The New Jerusalem
21…The Water of Life


WHAT IS MEANT by the two Resurrections? Will there really be a Battle of Armageddon? What is Armageddon? Will Jesus come to earth again? When is He coming? What will be the signs of His coming? Is there going to be such a thing as the Rapture of the Church? ... These and many other prophetic questions are being asked today by many people from all different religious beliefs.

On most bookstore shelves you can find books that attempt to answer these questions with an apparent disregard for the authority of the scriptures. There are many films that can be seen, that have been produced in order to convince people of their own particular prophetic persuasion. Most of these books and films have been an exploitation, bordering on sensationalism, preying upon a gullible religious market that is not at all sure of what it all means... Questions pertaining to subjects as important as these need to have, yea demand, a sound scriptural answer based on the complete Word of God, not just a few isolated verses that tend toward the sensational.

I believe that, with a sound mind, a keen desire to know the truth and with the Holy Spirit as our Divine Illuminator, we can know the truth in regard to the aforementioned questions and many more like them.

It is toward the fulfillment of this desire that I commend the contents of this book to all who would read it and study it. It will help you to better understand many of the so-called mysteries of the Book of Revelation and gain new and wonderful truths concerning Jesus Christ and the Kingdom of God.

Knowing the author of this book, Dr. H.C. Heffren, and having read many of his other writings concerning prophetic subjects, I know this book will be a great tool to assist you in answering many of your questions.

May God bless you as you read these pages.

Rev. Delmar D. Holbrook…Church of God at Camrose, Alberta Canada ( Pastor )


The Book of Revelation has been much maligned and for the most part shunned because of its employment of imagery and symbols that are difficult to understand. Although hundreds of books have been written about Revelation, it would be safe to say that no two are identical. In this volume we will try to adhere to a few pertinent facts, and abstain as much as possible from speculative language and dogmatism.

We take some consolation in applying ourselves to the message in Revelation, for it is the only book that offers a blessing upon both the readers and the ones who listen to the message (Rev. 1:2). It is primarily a book to reveal Jesus Christ to everyone (Rev. 1:1). Revelation is the English equivalent for the Greek word, apocalypse, meaning to unveil or disclose. Christ is both the Revealed One and also the Revealer.

Significantly, Christ is revealed as the Light of the World. He is manifested as Light all through Revelation. Attempts have been made from time to time to identify some manifestation of Light with a particular event or church in history, and associate it with some specific date. God has manifested His truth to the world in various degrees and in different ways (Heb. 1: 1,2), but in Matthew 4:15,16, we read, "The land of Zebulun and land of Naphtali, the way to the sea, along the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles-the people living in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned." Christ is pictured in the midst of the candlesticks, not only giving the light but sharing the light with the churches.

The language used in Revelation is symbolic as stated in Revelation 1: I b, "And He (Christ) sent and signified it by His angel unto His servant John." The reason Christ spoke in symbols is that the fires of persecution were already beginning to wreak havoc and torture for believers. John was exiled to Patmos. Much of inspired prophecy is written in symbols, and is so written to convey encouragement to the believers and at the same time to escape the wrath of the pagans who saw no threat to their government if the message were interpreted literally. Thus, Christ with a sword for a tongue was futile to oppose, but with the Word of God and a message of salvation as His weapon, the sword of His mouth is a potent weapon.

Numerals are frequently used in Revelation. The number seven is used 54 times. Reference is made to seven spirits, seven churches, seven heads on the beast, etc. Seven is a combination of three and four, the number of God plus the number of creation. It is a complete number, and while it refers to seven churches, it includes all the churches. Where it says seven spirits, it means the totality of the Spirit of God. It reveals a very close relationship between Christ and the Church.

Observe too, the close resemblance in characteristics between the dragon, the beast, the harlot and the dragon in chapter 20. In chapter 12 the fearsome dragon has seven heads and ten horns, but the crowns are on the heads. In chapter 13 we are introduced to a beast rising out of the sea. The beast also has seven heads and ten horns, but the crowns are on the horns. The dragon gives the beast his seat and great authority.

When we turn to chapter 17, we find the same beast with seven heads and ten horns, but a scarlet-clothed woman is astride it. The identity of this combination is told in detail. The sea that is mentioned is said to represent people, nations, multitudes and tongues. The sea represents people in turmoil and unrest. Once more we are introduced to the seven heads, but they are explained as representing the seven hills or mountains on which the woman sits. It is a well-known fact that Rome is located on seven hills. In the National Encyclopedia (Colliers), we read, "The Seven Hills of Rome which the city occupied in the 6th century ... can be identified today" (Vol. 8, p. 528).

Not only was Rome located on seven hills, but it was ruled by seven different forms of government during its long history of political supremacy. Revelation 17: 10 describes this as follows: "And there are seven kings: five are fallen, and one is, and the other is not yet come; and when he cometh, he must continue a short space." Revelation 17 continues its historical portrayal of events. In Revelation 17:12, we read, "And the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast. These have one mind, and shall give their power and strength to the beast."

History records that when Rome fell, it disintegrated into ten different kingdoms, which eventually became merged into what is known as the Holy Roman Empire, a federation that owed allegiance to the Pope in Rome, thus they had one mind with the beast. When John wrote the Revelation, these kings were not yet in existence, but history records the fact that they have long since moved across the panorama of time and have passed into oblivion.

Thus we see a seven-headed dragon with crowns on its heads symbolizing pagan Rome, ready to devour the infant Church. Next we see a seven-headed beast with ten crowns on its horns, but with the same opposition to the Cause of Christ typifying the temporal government of Rome during the rise of the Papacy. Following that, we find the scarlet-gowned harlot, the woman indicating the religious power and authority in close association with the beast, the temporal authority. A harlot indicates the breaking of wedlock and not being true to the marriage vows, thus not the true Bride of Christ, but one who dispenses her favors to the kings of the earth for political advantage. Hence, we see in Revelation 17:18, "And the woman which thou sawest is that great city, which reigneth over the kings of the earth." Thus Revelation 17 gives a detailed explanation of what the heads and horns and the woman symbolize.

In Revelation 20 we have the final appearance of the Dragon. He is devoid of his seven heads and ten horns, and is also without the domination of the scarlet-covered harlot woman. The prevailing emphasis is that the Cause of Christ must ultimately conquer. The white horse that went forth conquering and to conquer in chapter 6 now is victorious in chapter 19. The battle and the struggle is a spiritual encounter ending in complete victory to the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. One cannot help but notice how John the Revelator pauses at frequent intervals to voice the praises and adulation of the victors who exclaim their adoration constantly to God. Heaven's throne is not abdicated and there is never a time when God is not in full control. All creation moves in one planned order toward a final destiny under the government of God that will vindicate all His actions and glorify all His results. Revelation goes through many throes of suffering and sorrow, but it ends in triumph and everlasting victory. We have the word of Christ in Revelation 22:16, "1, Jesus, have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches." This is Christ's message to the Church for all time.

Part One...

Chapter 1


Before we attempt to explain the teachings that are found in the Book of Revelation, it may be worth our while to examine the words that are used to describe it. First of all, Revelation means "the act of making known." A second meaning is "a thing made known." A third meaning is "God's disclosure of Himself and of His will to His creatures." The Greek word from which the meaning comes is apocalypse. This word means "to uncover"; hence we have Revelation. In many ways, this last Book in the Bible has presented a puzzle to many readers, but originally it was not meant to be a puzzle. It was meant to be a Revelation of Jesus Christ, and a blessing is pronounced upon both the readers and the hearers of its message (at that time, very few people could read). We hope to have a profitable time in going into the great truths that are in this Book.

At the outset, we wish to say that the Book of Revelation is not written to reveal the future history of mankind. We think it is a mistake to indulge in date setting and in forecasting future history. The danger of this is seen in the fact that almost all such date setting has been found Unreliable and the predicted events have not become part of history. The Book of Revelation is not an almanac nor an oracle. It is not a weather forecast of future events. It has a plain message, which we shall endeavor to portray.

The Bible is the most wonderful of all books. The Old Testament begins with the story of Creation. It reveals to us the Fall of man into sin and God's judgment because of the Fall. It is interesting that the last word in the Old Testament in the King James Version is "curse" and it implies that those who sinned against God are under the curse of God's judgment on sin. The opening words of the New Testament introduce us to the Creator, the Lord Jesus Christ. Incidently, Jesus Christ is the first name in the New Testament and it is also the name of the One who lifts the curse. In Adam there is the sad record of sin, and in Adam all die. The New Testament begins with the generation of Jesus Christ and is the source from which we derive our hope of eternal life; in Christ all are made alive. "For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive" (I Cor. 15:22). It is interesting too, that the first and last name in the New Testament is Jesus Christ. It is also the first and last name in the Book of Revelation. The name of Jesus Christ is first and last. This is further emphasized in the fact that He is called the first and the last and also the Alpha and Omega. The alpha and omega were the first and last letters of the Greek alphabet and was the same as saying, "I am the alphabet." The importance of this claim is the fact that this alphabet comprehends all that we know and all that we ever will know. Every book that is written and everything that is said and everything that we can possibly know is comprehended in the alphabet, and what the alphabet is to literature, Jesus Christ is to life. He is the beginning and the ending. He is the One, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty (Rev. 1:8b).

We find the opening words of the Book of Revelation to be, "The Revelation of Jesus Christ." We are not justified in thinking that Revelation is a book of predicted history, but it is a Revelation of Jesus Christ. Many people think of prophecy as an unfolding of future events. Prophecy is not a prediction, nor is it prognosis, that is, a forecast of what is likely to happen, a shrewd guess of future events. Prophesy is a divine statement of what lies beyond human knowledge (Deuteronomy 18:22). It should be emphasized that the Book of Revelation is the Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him to show unto His servants things which must shortly come to pass. The Book of Revelation is not something to speculate upon. It is something from which to discern what God has designed for His followers.

Sometimes one puzzles at the language in which Revelation is written. We get some latitude in its application by the statement that is made in verse one, "and he sent and signified it by his angel unto his servant John." The fact that He signified it shows that it is written in code or in symbols. The reason for this is that Revelation was written at a time of severe persecution and frequent martyrdoms of those who were followers of Christ. To expose the Roman Empire and its Emperor in plain language would be to invite death or inhuman persecutions, so John wrote his message in symbols. It is quite possible that the people living in John's time were familiar enough with all of the symbols to know exactly what was meant by his use of such illustrations, but at the present time, we are not familiar with all of them; therefore, we shall endeavor to follow what is the plain teaching of Scripture and leave to the reader the things on which it is necessary to speculate. After all, the silences of God are often just as vocal as when He speaks, and where He does not reveal Himself clearly, we should tread with reverent caution and not say more than what is revealed.

We pass on now to Revelation 1: 12-17, which reads as follows: "And I turned to see the voice that spake with me. And being turned, I saw seven golden candlesticks; 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. His head and his hairs were white like wool, as white as snow; and his eyes were as a flame of fire; and his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and his voice as the sound of many waters. And he had in his right hand seven stars: and out of his mouth went a sharp two-edged sword: and his countenance was as the sun shineth in his strength. 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." Observe here that this description is the only description of Christ in the Bible. It is a description of the resurrected Christ and it was the manner in which he appeared to the seven churches in Asia. In the gospels we do not have a description of Christ's appearance. We do not know the color of His hair or how tall He was or what His voice sounded like or any of His features. All we have in the gospels is His character and the description of His Deity, His miracles and His words. The gospels were written almost exclusively without using the pronoun "I". Everything is focused on the person of Christ, and in the first chapter of Revelation it Describes the appearance of the resurrected Christ.

Going back to verse four we find than words, "John to the seven churches which are in Asia ... and from the seven Spirits which are before the throne..." Here we find the first introduction to the number seven. It is a perfect number. The number three signifies the number of God-the Trinity, and four signifies the number of man, or creation. Thus seven signifies the complete number that is representative of the relationship between God and man. The greeting indicates that Jesus Christ is the Faithful Witness-the first begotten of the dead, and the Prince of the Kings of the earth. Further, its says, "unto Him that loved us, and washed us from our sins, in His own blood, and hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father..." You will notice that it is revealed to us that Christ is the Faithful Witness and that we are saved by being washed from our sins in His blood. Naturally, we have to take this for what it means, for actual blood would not wash our sins away, but the blood of Christ avails for those who are sinners and estranged from God, and we are thus cleansed and made ready for acceptance into the Family of God. Our position then is as kings and priests, for we are reigning over sin and we have a priesthood of believers who are equipped to offer up sacrifices that are acceptable to God through Christ (I Peter 2:5).

We should pause for a moment at verse ten where it says, "I was in the Spirit on the Lord's day, and heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet." It is worthy of note that John did not say, "I was in the Spirit on the Sabbath day," rather than the Lord's day. It is quite beyond dispute that the early Christians met on Sunday to celebrate the resurrection day of the Lord. They were no longer under the types and shadows of the Law, but they had a new day to honor and exalt their Savior. In the Old Testament (Exodus 31:16) it says, "Wherefore the children of Israel shall keep the Sabbath, to observe the Sabbath throught their generations, for a perpetual covenant. " The New Testament begins with, "The book of the generation of Jesus Christ , the son of David, the son of Abraham" (Matt. 1:1). A new generation was begun in Christ and the law and the prupose of the Sabbath was fulfilled as we read in Exodus 31:17, "It is a sign between me and the children of Israel forever; for in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day he rested and was refreshed." The sabbathe was given as a sign between God and the children of Israel to commemorate their deliverence from Egypt. In the New Testament under the generation of Chirst, we keep the Lord's day in commemoration of our deliverance from sin and the entrance into a new life in Christ Jesus. We have ceased from our works and we enter into His rest, as it tells us in Hebrews 4:10. So the Lord's day that is mentioned by John indicates that the early Christians observed this day not as a Sabbath day of rest, but to commemorate the event ot His resurrection. We cease from our labors and participate in His rest.

We are now given our first introduction into the meaning of the symbols used. In verse 20 it tells us that the mystery of the seven stars means the seven golden candlesticks, and it also says, "the seven stars are the angels of the seven churches: and the seven candlesticks which thou sawest are the seven churches." The implication of this explanation is that there are seven, which does not necessarily indicate the number seven, but the complete number of the churches that are under the scrutiny and the government of Jesus Christ. Some people infer that the angels of the seven churches are the bishops o 'r pastors who have the oversight of the churches. It is perhaps not necessary to be too dogmatic at this point, but the angels are the ones who are in charge of the various churches that are designated by John; consequently, it could mean the ministers who are representing the will of the Lord in these places.


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