The Revelation of the Book of Revelation

Is there a reason why the Bible starts with Genesis and ends with Revelation? I don’t think of the books of the Bible on a continuum but a story that comes full circle—a place that starts and ends at the same point. My revelation of the Book of Revelation is how it explains the struggle of getting back to the days of Genesis.

Genesis defines who God is and the perfect human relationship with Him. You can see through Adam’s and Eve’s relationship with God, the design He had for humanity. Revelation revels Christ’s identity and the hope to restore humankind back into the perfect relationship with God while at the same time showing how broken our world is by the reproach in the letters to the 7 churches. And to think, this was the condition of the churches just 95 years after Jesus’s birth. What might the letters look like today in 2021 with untold numbers of Christian denominations. When Jesus ascended into Heaven, I imagine his vision was for one church and not hundreds of religions.

Revelation

Revelation identifies Christ’s full identity and the only means of getting back to the original relationship design in Genesis. Thom Rainer in his research published in Autopsy of a Deceased Church says that 90% of churches are sick or dying. Is God taking away their lamp stands? Have you watched the documentary The Clergy Project, which in my opinion, should be renamed Atheists in the Pulpit? If you haven’t, it will have you questioning whether your pastor has lost his or her faith in God while still preaching the Word in which they don’t believe.

What’s surprising about the 7 letters described in Revelation is that these were churches of Jesus’s day. You’d think they wouldn’t struggle as much as we do today, but it appears the struggle hasn’t changed much in 2000 years. These early Christian churches stood in what is now known as present day Turkey, and yet you can hardly find any Christians in the area.

Will you recognize your church in one of the 7 letters?

  1. Ephesus: The judgers. They focus so much on not sinning that they lost the love and acceptance of people.
  2. Smyrna: The fearful. These were the suffers. Encouraged to be faithful, not fearful, so they could receive the crown of life
  3. Pergamum: The tolerators. They tolerated sin by bowing to the external pressure of being open-minded to the culture at large
  4. Thyatira: The Jezebels. Promoted and took part in sexual immortality that was widely accepted in the day
  5. Sardis: The spiritually dead. Active in doing good deeds but superficial because corrupt inside
  6. Philadelphia: The hangeron-ers. Probably the only church not rebuked. Told to hold tight even though their strength may be weak
  7. Laodicea: The half-hearters. These are those who believed and relied not on God but on their own self-sufficiency

These letters cover the same struggles that are going on in most churches across the country and world.

What Can Be Done?

Many people have never had a spiritual encounter with Jesus, God, and the Holy Spirit. The only way to God is through a personal relationship with Christ, which means you have to get comfortable with the spiritual realm—the same one described in stories throughout the Bible such as Jesus tempted by the devil for 40 days in the Judaean Desert and demons jumping out of people and into pigs. The world hasn’t change except the demons have multiplied.

Your ability to have a personal relationship with God is a spiritual battle through Original Sin. The Good News is that God made a way to reconcile us to him. You must focus on your relationship with Christ and not by adhering to the rules. Get into the Word, pray, and let God reveal Himself to you. When you do you will have the power to live according to the exemplified values of Christ and bring more Heaven to earth.

Full Circle

Genesis tells the story of God walking and talking with Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. Revelation describes people worshiping God face-to-face. Genesis describes a garden before an evil serpent. Revelation describes a perfect city without evil.

The only way to come full circle is to walk through the narrow gate. “…For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it” (Matthew 7:14 (NIV). The narrow gate is an invitation from God for a personal, spiritual relationship.

If you’d like to talk more about Christ, Salvation, or the Bible, don’t hesitate to reach out for a conversation.


About the Author: Sandra Dillon is a professional coach with an extensive background in premarital/marriage, finances, ministry, and leadership. She coaches individuals and couples to find their purpose, be the heroes of their own life stories, and help them be a shining light in this spiritually dark world. You can learn more about Sandra or engage her as you coach by reaching out to her at shinecrossings@gmail.com

What Genesis Tells Us About Marriage

Genesis describes the first man, woman, and marriage. This first book of the Bible also provides insights into God’s original design of marriage as well as helps explain why many of today’s marriage fall short of God’s plan. The challenges and troubles in current marriages are easily explained by the consequences set forth by the bite of forbidden fruit.

God’s Design of Man and Woman

In Genesis 1:26 (NIV), “Then God said, ‘Let us make man [mankind, human] in our image…let THEM rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth…” “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them” (Genesis 1:27, NIV). These Scriptures show that in the beginning both man and woman were made in the image of God with neither one or the other above or below each other.

God first created woman from Adam’s rib. She was part of Adam’s DNA: bone of his bone and flesh of his flesh (Genesis 2:23). This description gives deep understanding why a man will leave his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they will become one flesh (Genesis 2:24). Before the Fall husband and wife were equal but different with neither one more superior than the other. You could infer that Adam and his wife lived in paradise and had the perfect marriage. And then crawled the serpent through the Garden of Eden playing head games with the woman.

Sin Changed Marriage

….and not for the better. The one bite of the fruit from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil changed marriage from that moment on. When Adam and the woman disobeyed God of their own free will, they had to pay a price for their sinful choice. What was their punishment?

In Genesis 3:16, “To the woman [God] said, ‘I will greatly increase your pains in childbearing; with the pain you will give birth to children. Your desire will be for your husband, and he will rule over you.’”

Woman’s consequence for her free will behavior was to be lorded over by her husband. She lost her status as an equal to husband. Why is it important to understand the penalty? Because today many marriages suffer, when husbands lord over their wives, a direct result of Adam’s and Eve’s sins. Remember, this was not God’s design of the perfect marriage.

Why Woman Became Known as Eve

Up until the Fall, God refers to the first woman as “wife” or “woman”. She doesn’t get her name until God says that Adam would rule over her, so “Adam named his wife Eve” (Genesis 3:28, NIV). This was the same instructions that God gave Adam when He gave Adam dominion over all living things (Genesis 2:19). Where once Adam and Eve were co-managers of the Garden of Eden, now Adam ruled over Eve. And it didn’t end with the first couple. They set in motion the same sinful outcome for generations.

Marriage Message for Our Time

Many wonder why there’s so much inequity between men and women in general, and even in marriages?  Christian marriages no less. The simple answer is the consequence of sin in the Garden of Eden has propagated through family legacies.

God didn’t design marriage for the husband to rule over his wife, yet the Fall explains the fight that started with the first bite of the forbidden fruit. As Christians we should know what God’s design for marriage truly is and to fight to live it out in our own marriages. Are you treating each other as equals? If not, you have knowledge and free will do choose better for your marriage.


About the Author: Sandra Dillon is a professional coach with an extensive background in premarital/marriage, finances, ministry, and leadership. She coaches individuals and couples to find their purpose, be the heroes of their own life stories, and help them be a shining light in this spiritually dark world. You can learn more about Sandra or engage her as you coach by reaching out to her at shinecrossings@gmail.com

If You Don’t Know Genesis, I Doubt You Know My God

The God that breathed out stars is the same God that created you. Before you were ever born, books were written in the heavens about you and your purpose (Palms 139:16). God has a plan for your life. Will you choose to live out God’s design for your life through obedience or exercise your free will?

Why it’s important to understand Genesis?

Genesis has powerful messages through the stories lived by the founding families of this earth. Their life lessons are taught in our classroom, where we can learn more about our God of yesterday, today, and the future, as we build our personal relationship with Him. In Genesis we:

  • Learn of the power and glory of God
  • Understand the catalyst (The Fall) that continues to cause pain and suffering in God’s children
  • Provides hope and assurance that we can be reconciled with the God who created each one of us in His image

If you don’t get the lessons in Genesis, you’ll likely question why you struggle so much, wonder why you’re “here”, and feel a level of emptiness in your life. Truly, how fulfilled is your soul?

What does Genesis reveal?

God is always talking to us regardless of whether we choose to listen. He is a good, good Father.

  • God gives us free will. He doesn’t demand our obedience but allows us to suffer the consequences of our choices.
  • God desires obedience which is the highest form of love, praise, and worship. Whether we realize it or not, He is the Father that knows best.
  • God still loves us even when sin. After Adam and Eve took a bite of the apple from Tree of Good and Evil, God was creating a plan to reconcile humanity to Him through the blood of Jesus Christ.
  • Not only are we living with our own sin from personal choices, we’re also suffering with the generational sin we inherited.

I may understand Genesis more than most, because obedience is one of my core values. Some have the illusion that freedom is doing what you want. God says freedom comes from obedience to Him and knowing what not to do. Eve took a bite of the forbidden fruit although everything else in the Garden was hers for the taking. How often is your attention drawn away from the much that you have toward the little that you don’t?

What are the life truths from Genesis?

If you’ve spent time in Genesis, you may have some of your own truths that God whispered to you. Messages that resonate with me include:

  • God is faithful to those who obey Him.
  • God does not always protect us from trouble but deeply cares for us, never leaves us through our suffering, and can make good from our bad choices.
  • Obedience is a committed walk with the Lord, but the world will try and pull you away toward the pleasure of sin.
  • You may be faithful and obedient, but you will never be perfect. Our sinful nature is always carried with us.

I encourage you to read The Book of Genesis and pull out the voice of God that is talking to you through His Word.


About the Author: Sandra Dillon is a professional coach with an extensive background in premarital/marriage, finances, ministry, and leadership. She coaches individuals and couples to find their purpose, be the heroes of their own life stories, and help them be a shining light in this spiritually dark world. You can learn more about Sandra or engage her as you coach by reaching out to her at shinecrossings@gmail.com