I have just finished my meditations through the book of Revelation. It can be confusing, mainly because us westerners don’t use or understand the literature form. It is so important to see it as connected to the Old Testament. Because of our limitations, it is subject to misinterpretation; however it is indeed the word of God, with much blessing for all who read it.
In the search for prophetic doctrine I suggest the following :
Read the teaching of the Lord Jesus Christ. He taught much about the future, especially in seed form. He knew about the great tomorrow better than anyone else.
Connect the teachings of the Lord with the Old Testament. He quoted it often and made clear its authority as given by God. Care must be taken in the study of the Old Testament as to time period, context, already fulfilled, yet to be fulfilled, and the peoples/ persons involved.
The teachings of the Apostles, who were sent and commissioned by the Lord , are vital to understanding of prophecy. By the Holy Spirit they were able to expound the Lord’s teachings, and give much help on the Old Testament prophecies. As the Lord Jesus promised, the apostles would lay the foundation for ‘Christian faith’.
In many cases the prophet did not understand all that was being spoken (or written). Such are the communications of the all knowing God. Many people interpret prophecy within the framework of their doctrinal / denominational bias. This is somewhat unavoidable; however we should seek clarity by letting the scripture interpret scripture. It is important to have some understanding of history to know what has already been fulfilled.
All prophecy connects with the Lord Jesus Christ, and His glory is the ultimate purpose.
Much speculation over the years has done much damage. Let us major on God’s majors, leaving the detail for God to work out.
The Lord Jesus has said – “I will come again”
We can truely respond – “Even so come Lord Jesus”
I would be delighted to write more on the major points of prophecy if anyone would like more. Send me an email to set me going.