Today, if we wish a letter to be private, we put it in an envelope. Nobody can read it unless they first tear the envelope open. In former times, people used seals, which are pieces of a substance called wax. The seal would hold a letter or a book firmly closed, until someone broke the seal open. We discussed the use of seals further when we studied the seals on the book (scroll) in Revelation chapters 5 and 6.
In Daniel 12:4, God told Daniel to put a seal on his book. His book was not about things that would happen soon. It was about the Ďtime of the endí, that is, the last days before Christís return. Therefore, people could not understand it all immediately (Daniel 12:8-9).
Godís instruction to John, however, was the opposite. John must not put a seal on the Book of Revelation. It tells about events that will happen soon. Godís people need to hear the bookís message now. It will give them the strength to stand firmly for him during the troubles that must happen soon.
Many Christians today do not like to hear that Christ will return soon. We have waited for 2000 years, they say. However, the Bible is clear about the matter. Christís return is the next great event in Godís plan for the world. It will happen at a time when people do not expect it (Matthew 24:42-44). It may happen at any time. We must be ready. The only reason why it has not happened yet is the patience of God. He is giving people the opportunity to turn to him (2 Peter 3:3-9).
God wanted Christians to study the Book of Revelation so that they would be strong during their troubles. However, it seems that for the first few centuries, the Book of Revelation was not popular among Christians. Many of their leaders did not like its message. Christians had great troubles then, but they had to deal with those troubles without the help of the Book of Revelation. That is very sad. God had provided a book to help them, but they did not know it.
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© 2016, Keith Simons.