SEVERAL PEOPLE have asked me questions like, “Why are you writing a commentary on the Book of Revelation? Aren’t there already enough of them?” or “What qualifications do you have to do this?” Well, first, no I am not qualified to do this, if you think that “qualified” means that I should be a feted professor of a “theological” college or some big-deal pastor of a megachurch and the suchlike. Second, I am not writing a verse-by-verse type of commentary. Rather, it is a series of essays and observations on each chapter. Some longer, some shorter, depending on the difficulty of the text involved and whether or not there is any controversy about it, in which case I will linger longer on it.
Regarding qualifications, the last time I read a commentary on the Book of Revelation by a theological professor, he was saying that Babylon in chapter 17 is ancient Rome and that the dual-beast of chapter 13 represents the power of ancient Rome and the priesthood of Rome — as if John could not see beyond his own nose and was merely writing out of his own personal experience. That is one of the biggest truncations of Truth that I have ever come across in a commentary. The Book of Revelation was written by Christ to reveal who He is in relation to the whole of history and the creation. It is a profound work of prophecy for this age, not a Trip Advisor review of ancient Rome!
And as for commentaries by ‘big-deal pastors’, one can very often find oneself presented with what amounts to a comic-book Endtime application of everything which is riddled with preconceived timelines involving a fictional “Pre-tribulation”, so-called “Rapture” and a 1000-year reign of Christ from Jerusalem with a renewed temple and a restored Israel as the big player. I feel that those views and many ideas which come out of those views skew the Book of Revelation beyond all recognition of what was intended by those who wrote it (i.e. Jesus Christ through John the apostle, mediated by angelic messengers and interpreters).
So, here are my qualifications to write a commentary on the Book of Revelation:
- I love truth more than anything else in this world and I will stop at nothing to get to it, and leave no stone unturned to find it. That mindset has amusingly got me into many difficult and oppressive situations in life and especially in the visible Church, in which there are many who laud truth with lip-service but secretly despise it when it rumbles their own little schemes and ambitions!
- I have been studying the Book of Revelation for more than 30 years and feel as if I have a love affair with it and a deep respect and desire for it to do its prophetic work far more widely.
- I have a great reverence for allegorical scripture when that is what it plainly is, for poetic scripture when that is what it plainly is, and for literal scripture when that is what it plainly is. Being able to differentiate between those idioms is a great qualification to write about the Book of Revelation.
- I do not approach the Book of Revelation with some preconceived ideas from elsewhere about the Endtime. My ideas about the Endtime have been determined by my actual in-depth study of the Book of Revelation itself over many years and what is plainly taught within its pages if one has the patience to discover that.
- I am not answerable to anyone who has a vested interest in me coming to certain conclusions. In fact, I am not accountable to anyone but the original Author of The Book that I am writing about (and I do not mean John!). Thus, I am free in human terms and only answerable in Divine terms..
- I make myself totally subject to the serious warning to anyone who adds to or takes away from the content and prophecies in the Book (in chapter 22, verses 18-19). This makes me weigh every word that I write with care.
- I regard myself as a learner rather than a teacher. Though, paradoxically, the more one learns and the wiser one hopefully becomes as a result of that learning, the more eligible one becomes to teach.
- I care deeply about the people who will read my book and regard the writing and publication of it as being above all else pastoral in nature rather than some kind of literary or theological accomplishment.
- I have resisted writing the book for many years, as my friends have witnessed. I knew that a moment would come when I would no longer be able to prevent myself from doing so, as my friends have witnessed. That seed which was planted years ago has now come of age.
Another major qualification to write this book — but one which requires more words than are usual in a bullet-point list — is my decades-long observations of the decline of what is seen publicly as “the Church”. I do not mean the decline in attendances in individual churches, but rather the fact that the Church, as viewed by the world, has become, in the main, a total embarrassment. I very rarely blush. But when I am faced with how the Church, in the main, projects itself to the world, I am deeply embarrassed. I am not speaking here about various elements of thinking about which one can amicably differ. I am referring to things which make the ekklesia the laughing-stock of the world and do the gospel no favours. The ekklesia of Christ is supposed to be counterculture, but you wouldn’t think so if you examine most churches, who choose clean-cut lads who rock no boats, and who conform to society, to be their pastors. They want someone who appeals to the high street so they can get bums on pews and a large collection-pot. They want nice middle-class people in there — the sort of folks who are key members of the Lions and Rotary International, pillars of the community, and who have lace-net curtains in their windows as well as on their hearts. No homeless types. No hippie-looking types. No unconventional people or those who seem different. Their Jesus wears a robe which looks like it came out of a washing-powder advert. And regarding the pandemic debacle of the last two years, so many churches have advised their flocks to get vaccinated and to obey the government in every respect. Even the Archbishop of Canterbury, the apparent leader of the Church in the UK and its jurisdiction, gave a recent interview in which he said that Jesus would have been vaccinated! Such clerics are mini-antichrists who have built a counterfeit church in the service of Satan. (Thank God for those few faithful pastors who have dared to tell it like it is, e.g., https://www.clr4u.org/covid-19-vaccines-and-vaccination-mandates-how-should-christians-respond/ , an in-depth study which got banned on Fakebook). How many pastors, ministers or priests do you know who have given sound advice about the tyrannical behaviour of governments, or the nature of the vaccine and the injuries it is causing? How many pastors, ministers or priests do you know who have advised their people on how to respond to the Covid narrative? The visible church in general is a disgrace and an embarrassment.
Who in the world is going to take a Church seriously which has no balls and which rolls on its back in submission to the satanic world-system? If you challenge that system, many Christian types (especially pastors!) will quote Romans 13 at you and tell you that you should submit to the authorities at all times. But that is a total cop-out and completely inappropriate! Paul was primarily addressing the vast number of people who wanted to rise up in armed insurrection against the authorities. Furthermore, he says there in verses 3 and 4 that if we “do what is right“ we will have the authorities’ approval, “for he is God’s servant for your good“. He is assuming there that the authority concerned will reward “doing right“ and punish wrongdoing. But what if the authorities censor what is right and celebrate what is wrong? This is precisely what we have today in so-called “western democracies“ (plus the awful Australia), where an untested substance is tantamount to being forcibly pushed into people‘s God-given bodies, the resultant injuries are being denied, lies are being upheld everywhere, censorship of truth prevails, and those who expose it all are persecuted and “cancelled“. In such a situation we must align ourselves solely with God rather than going along docilely with the satanic schemes of men. This has nothing to do with insurrection but is a celebration of truth. Whatever happened to the Church as counterculture promoter of truth, justice and righteousness, exposer of darkness, prophetic warner of what is coming upon this world, and announcer of how the Christ came as God in the flesh to draw to Himself all those who want to turn their lives around and be part of the new heaven and new earth which He will inaugurate at the end of this age after human and demonic evil have come to their head and been destroyed for all time?
Instead, the Church has been busily inventing a whole plethora of nutty bandwagons to deflect from the real message of truth. The ‘pre-trib. rapture’ bandwagon. The ‘speaking in tongues’ bandwagon. The ‘Judaizing’ bandwagon. The ‘Christian Zionist’ bandwagon. The ‘literal thousand-year reign of Christ from Jerusalem’ bandwagon. The ‘liberation theology’ bandwagon. The ‘Evangelical Right’ bandwagon. The ‘Professional Protestant’ bandwagon. There’s one for everyone! The ‘Reformed’ bandwagon. The ‘Sacerdotal’ bandwagon. The ‘Vatican State’ bandwagon. The ‘Jesus Freak’ bandwagon. The ‘KJV-Only‘ bandwagon. The ‘Toronto Blessing’ bandwagon. The ‘5-Point Calvinist‘ bandwagon. The ‘Arminian‘ bandwagon. The ‘Let’s Have a Hypnotic, Hysterical Experience and Call it Spirit-Baptism’ bandwagon. The ‘Health ’n Wealth’ bandwagon, the ‘QAnon’ bandwagon, and a huge truckload more. Whatever happened to “the simplicity and purity which is in Christ“? How can one witness about Christ straightforwardly and unaffectedly when there is already so much nonsense with which people have had contact and therefore decided that the Church is nuts or useless? Who can blame them?
Recently, for amusement and education, I watched one of those Endtimes ‘left behind’ type of films about the so-called ‘Rapture’, followed by the revealing of the Antichrist and the time period on earth after it. Honestly, I have never watched such a load of ‘tosh’ in my life! I was so embarrassed that such nonsense could be associated with the name of Christ. I actually blushed again. People running around with literal marks on their foreheads that are supposedly the mark of the beast. 🙄 (Read this article to know more on this interesting subject: https://diakrisis-project.com/2021/12/26/identifying-the-mark-of-the-beast-the-number-666/ ). The depiction of the Antichrist was about the most unreal representation imaginable. These people are turning the Bible, and especially the Book of Revelation, into a comic-book adventure yarn straight out of Hollywood. Believing in all this nonsense has almost become a hallmark of faith in many modern churches in the USA.
How difficult it is to recommend a church to anyone these days. They are either obsessed with ritualistic sacerdotalism making church a spectator-sport riddled with priestcraft, or practising occult tricks to gain wealth and health, or stifling freedom in a rigid cult-like atmosphere of heresy-hunting and error-spotting, or setting up a ‘megachurch’ to promote the pastor’s self-help books about how you can become “a better you” and how life will become “the fulfilment of a dream” if you would only “accept Jesus” (weak, diluted drivel huckstered by pastors with gleaming dental implants and exclusive leather real-gold-embossed Bibles [not to mention the pastors’ private jets and armoured cars]), or making your standing as a disciple of Christ contingent on your sworn adherence to some manmade confession or catechism, or making sure there is a little coterie of harsh myopic folks (often a family or families long involved with it) who secretly run the church and rigidly control everything including the pastors and teachers, or they function as social clubs to make people feel wanted and secure with insincere ‘love-bombing’ and extended song-sessions to induce endorphins and promote the feel-good factor, or peddling a mass of clichés and buzz-phrases to step up the sectarian saccharine, or making yourselves as dirge-like, dour, and unattractive as possible, then blaming the fact that no one is interested in your hellfire and brimstone “gospel” on people’s “resistance to the truth”. I could give more examples but it is all so tedious.
All of this should not surprise us. Jesus made it clear that there would be a true ekklesia in the world alongside a counterfeit church which cannot be weeded out by human means. I will enlarge on this below. But before that I have to say that I do not want to give the impression that the entire church in this world is apostate. Far from it — although it can certainly seem that way if one only looks at the most visible parts of the church as a whole. One must always differentiate between the compromised element of the church (which is mainly that which the external public are most aware of) and the true ekklesia which beavers away largely behind the scenes, with no big fanfares and no great rewards — no fancy clothes and no faithless whores (that is a reference to the “great whore” of Babylon in chapter 17 of the Book of Revelation, which is a symbol of the false religion, idolatry, godless philosophy and science which are used by the satanic world-system to seduce people away from discovering the true Christ — more about that in my book). These two elements of faithful and counterfeit in the Church in the world operate alongside one another throughout this age. This is not an easy thing to tolerate when one loves truth, purity and faithfulness.
Although denominations may be compromised and even apostate in terms of their organizational stance, there are usually some stalwart congregations with wise elders within those denominations which function virtually as independent fellowships and maintain their faith untainted by the duplicity of their hierarchies. I have personally known of a few of these. Jesus clearly taught that there would be true and false disciples in the church in this world (Gospel of Matthew, chapter 7, verses 21-23). This is shown most clearly in his graphic parable of the wheat and the Zizania. It is important to understand this. For it has great relevance to the counterfeit element of the church on earth. Here is the parable:
“The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his field. But while everyone was asleep, his enemy came and sowed Zizania among the wheat, and slipped away. When the wheat sprouted and bore grain, then the Zizania also appeared. The owner’s servants came to him and said, ‘Sir, didn’t you sow good seed in your field? Where then did the Zizania come from?’ ‘An enemy did this,’ he replied. So the servants asked him, ‘Do you want us to go and pull them up?’ ‘No,’ he said, ‘if you pull the Darnel now, you might uproot the wheat with them. Let both grow together until the harvest. At that time I will tell the harvesters: First collect the Zizania and tie it in bundles to be burned; then gather the wheat into my barn’”.Gospel of Matthew, chapter 13, verses 24-30
This parable really is a masterpiece. Jesus even kindly explained it so that its meaning cannot be misunderstood:
“The One who sows the good seed is the Son of Man (i.e. Christ). The field is the world, and the good seed represents the sons of the kingdom. The Zizania is the sons of the evil one, and the enemy who sows them is the devil. The harvest is the end of the age, and the harvesters are angels. As the Zizania is collected and burned in the fire, so will it be at the end of the age. The Son of Man will send out His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom every cause of sin and all who practice lawlessness. And they will throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. He who has ears, let him hear”.Gospel of Matthew, chapter 13, verses 37-43
It is extraordinary that most English translations of the Bible use the very diluted word, “weeds”, when the Greek text clearly says ζιζάνια, zizania, which refers to a plant known as Darnel, or Lolium temulentum, which grows alongside wheat and looks almost the same until the ear opens (therefore, to harvest early in those days would have yielded a corrupted crop, though now harvesters use a filter to prevent this from happening). Problem is that Zizania/Darnel is toxic to humans, so that “when people eat its seeds, they get dizzy, off-balance and nauseous, and its official name, Lolium temulentum, comes from a Latin word for ‘drunk’” (See https://www.atlasobscura.com/articles/wheats-evil-twin-has-been-intoxicating-humans-for-centuries ). So to translate zizania simply as “weeds” is sloppy, to say the least. I believe that it is negligent.
The point of me sharing all this here is to show that the Christ clearly said that the church in the world would grow with both ‘wheat’ (genuine disciples) and ‘Zizania/Darnel’ (counterfeit disciples) alongside each other, which outwardly, before the harvest (the return of the Christ), could be difficult to tell apart, for one cannot necessarily judge the heart of a person and certainly not as God can. The word “weeds” in that context has no descriptive power whatsoever, for the counterfeit aspect is vital to the parable, as it is not about weedy people but counterfeit disciples deliberately seeded by Satan in the churches to cause trouble and distract. This is why we have, after a couple of thousand years of growth, ended up with a counterfeit visible church which tries to mimic the true ekklesia which Christ came to inaugurate — just as Zizania/Darnel mimics wheat. This does not mean that one has to tolerate outright apostasy! But it is just provided to show that if there is a doubt then we need to exercise caution before we get ‘trigger-happy’. We can separate ourselves from it, but we cannot expurgate this false church. It is just too all-consuming. For now. In fact, it will also doubtless have a key role to play in the welcoming of the Antichrist, the persecution of the true ekklesia and the parallel coming-to-its-head of all evil in this world, as a precursor to Divine judgement. It is for God to judge the counterfeit church, as He surely will.
However, although we cannot expunge from the world the counterfeit church as a whole (though we can distance and separate ourselves from it), I believe that the Book of Revelation — if approached and interpreted with humility, integrity and authenticity — has the potential to cut right through and across all these counterfeit aberrations of “Church” and encourage an awareness of the need for the ekklesia to be counterculture to the satanic world-system. It provides a stunning overview of the vast panoply of creation, with a special emphasis on the period of this present age from the ascension of Christ to His cataclysmic return. It also creates a sense of eschatological urgency which can give rise to a rejuvenation of what the word ekklesia really means and thereby seed a coming-together of the many alienated and scattered ‘new diaspora’ of disciples into what ‘church’ is really meant to be (instead of all the ridiculous bandwagons), and render it more like what it was in the beginning of this age in the first couple of centuries AD. Ekklesia is the Greek word which is usually translated as “church”. But as a compound word, its full meaning in the Greek is “the called-out ones”. Called out from what? From the satanic world-system of course!
I hope I have now answered the question, “Why are you writing a commentary on the Book of Revelation?” I am writing it because I want it to be one which is involved with no bandwagon whatsoever and one which comes from an intense desire to showcase truth rather than follow a timeline dictated to me by Marvel Cinematic Universe! 🙂 I have no axe to grind — no parrot on my shoulder whispering to me how I am supposed to be interpreting everything. Honestly, I came to the text at the start of this journey last June telling myself that I know nothing and that I only want the truth to ooze out of the text and nothing less. Please do not misunderstand me. I am not saying that only I have the truth! Perish the very thought. There is truth everywhere, if you seek it out. But this book is astonishing me every day with what I am learning, and it cannot not be written. It is my heartfelt wish that I will be presenting some keys which can unlock some doors for its readers. Therefore, I want to be quietly and methodically, accurately, and devoid of all sensationalism, shown the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help me God.
© 2021, Alan Morrison / The Diakrisis Project. All Rights Reserved. [The copyright on my works is merely to protect them from any wanton plagiarism which could result in undesirable changes (as has actually happened!). Readers are free to reproduce my work, so long as it is in the same format and with the exact same content and its origin is acknowledged]