The Time Is Near

Revelation 1:1-3



  1. The End Times
    1. There is so much talk of the end times today, all around the world.
      1. Just this past week two different people asked me about it.
      2. One asked, “Bro. Dan, what is the next event before Jesus returns?”
      3. I said to him, “I’m just waiting to hear the trumpet blast!”
      4. There is nothing that we are waiting for right now except for Jesus to return in the sky.
      5. I went on to say that the most important question for each one of us to ask every day is “Who in my life needs to hear about Jesus?”
      6. We just need to be found working for the Kingdom when Jesus returns.
    2. It has also been fascinating to me over the years when I see people saved and then one of the first books they want to study is Revelation.
      1. They know it tells us about the future and they want to know what is going to happen.
      2. The last book in the Bible is Revelation and, this morning, we are going to look at 3 verses.
    3. Revelation 1:1-3

1 The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show to his servants the things that must soon take place. He made it known by sending his angel to his servant John,

who bore witness to the word of God and to the testimony of Jesus Christ, even to all that he saw.

Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of this prophecy, and blessed are those who hear, and who keep what is written in it, for the time is near.

  1. I hope you believe that the time is at hand. I believe that with all my heart, because the Bible says that over and over.


  1. Genesis and Revelation
    1. I am so glad that we have the Book of Revelation, but Satan hates the Book of the Revelation!
      1. There are two books in the Bible that the devil especially hates.
      2. Genesis and Revelation—the first and the last books.
        • There’s a war against Genesis: “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth” (Genesis 1:1).
        • And, there’s a war against the Book of the Revelation: “Jesus Christ is coming again.”
      3. Why does Satan hate these two books as he does? It’s very simple:
        • In the Book of Genesis, Satan’s doom is prophesied
        • In Revelation, it is realized.
        • There is no devil in the first two chapters or the last two chapters of the Word of God!
      4. Genesis and Revelation are tied together
        1. In the Book of Genesis, we see the creation of the heavens and the earth; in the Book of the Revelation, we see new heavens and a new earth.
        2. In the Book of Genesis we see the first Adam, who is reigning on earth; in the Book of the Revelation, we see Jesus, the last Adam, reigning in Glory.
        3. In the Book of Genesis, we see an earthly bride brought to the first Adam; in Revelation, we see a heavenly bride—and that’s us – the church—brought to the Lord Jesus Christ, the last Adam.
        4. In the Book of Genesis, we see the beginning of death and the curse; and in the Book of the Revelation, the Savior brings us to where there is no more death and, PTL, there is no more curse.
        5. In the Book of Genesis, man is driven from God’s face in sin; and in the Book of the Revelation, we see God’s face in Glory.
        6. In the book of Genesis Satan appears on earth for the first time; and in the Book of Revelation, he appears on earth for the last time.
      5. The Book of the Revelation just brings the entire Bible together.


  1. The Central Person of the Book
    1. “The Revelation of Jesus Christ” – Revelation 1:1
      1. The central person of the book is Jesus!
        1. Now, if you don’t get that, you’ve missed the whole thing.
      2. John tells us in verse 2 that it is all about the testimony of Jesus.
        1. Revelation 1:2 “and … the testimony of Jesus Christ”.
      3. In this book we are not looking for something to happen – we are looking for someone to come.
        1. His name is Jesus!
        2. If you don’t see the Lord Jesus on every page, then you’ve missed it.
        3. It is “the Revelation of Jesus Christ” (Revelation 1:1).


  1. Revelation
    1. Sometimes people call this book Revelations.
      1. It’s not Revelations; it is Revelation (singular).
      2. And it is a revelation of whom? Jesus Christ.
    2. The word Revelation is the Greek word apokalupsis.
      1. You have heard the word apocalypse or apocalyptic before.
      2. Revelation comes from the word apokalupsis which literally means is “an unveiling.”
      3. If you’ve ever seen a statue unveiled—the sculptor does his work; there’s a canvas covering it. Then with all of the dignitaries there the statue is unveiled.
      4. Somebody pulls away the covering and the statue is there, unveiled, so people can see it.
      5. That’s exactly what God does in Revelation – He unveils His Son, Jesus Christ.
    3. Can you imagine the heart of God the Father, when He says, “Here is My Son, my only begotten Son”
      1. “Here is an unveiling of My beloved Son in whom I am well pleased.”
      2. “He is My Son who is King of kings and Lord of lords!, the Bright and Morning Star”


  1. His Glory Revealed
    1. Of course, Jesus is the hero of the Bible and especially the Book of Revelation.
      1. You will find our Lord Jesus in the Bible wherever you choose to look.
      2. He is the theme of the Bible; He is center and heart of the entire book.
    2. If you read the Bible and you don’t see Jesus, then go back and read it again.
      1. That is especially true of the Book of the Revelation.
      2. It is “the Revelation of Jesus Christ” (Revelation 1:1).
    3. His glory’s going to be unveiled because when He came the first time, His glory was veiled.
      1. His Second Coming is going to be far different from His first coming.
      2. The first time He came, He came to a crucifixion, but when He comes again, He’s coming to a coronation.
      3. He came the first time to a cross but when He comes again, He’s coming to a throne.
      4. When He came the first time, He stood before Pilate; but when He comes again, Pilate will stand before Him to be judged.
      5. He came the first time as a servant; He is coming again as a King of kings and Lord of lords.
      6. His glory is going to be unveiled, and the Book of the Revelation gives us a peek at what will happen.


  1. The Clear Purpose of the Book

“The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show to his servants the things that must soon take place. He made it known by sending his angel to his servant John, (Revelation 1:1)

Jesus has come to show His servants the future, and only God knows the future.


  1. His Servants
    1. The word servant is the Greek word doulos, which means bond slaves.
      1. Bond slaves are willingly the slaves of the Lord Jesus Christ.
      2. Are you a bond slave of Jesus Christ?
      3. If not, then you won’t understand the Book of the Revelation, because it is a revelation to the bond slaves of Jesus Christ.
      4. Your life is not your own; you belong to Jesus Christ.
      5. Have you ever bowed your knee to Jesus Christ and crowned Him King of kings and Lord of lords?
      6. If you have then you can understand this book and Jesus has come to show you things that are going to come to pass.
    2. But, the Bible and especially Revelation is a closed book to those who have never bowed their knee to Jesus Christ.
      1. The great historian H.G. Wells wrote a book called The Fate of Man in which he said, “Who, except cranks and lunatics, read the Book of Revelation?”
      2. His servants read this book and it tells us things “which must … come to pass” (Revelation 1:1).
    3. History is not just happening – God is in control.
      1. Ephesians 1:11 speaks of Him “who works all things after the counsel of his own will”.
      2. God is in control. God is not up in Heaven, wringing His hands, saying, “What am I going to do?”
      3. The Holy Trinity never meets in emergency session.
      4. God is in control, and things are going to come to pass.


  1. Satan Does Not Know the Future
    1. Don’t get the idea that the devil knows the future.
      1. If the devil knew the future, he’d never try to be the devil in the first place.
      2. Like he’s going to exalt himself above the stars of God! That would never come to pass.
      3. He thought it would but it did not come to pass.
    2. Satan is brilliantly stupid and hideously beautiful.
      1. One of these days he’s going to Hell – he’s not in Hell yet – but he is destined for Hell.
      2. And when he gets there, he will not reign in Hell.
      3. Only God knows the future and, the Book of the Revelation is written to tell us the future.
    3. The clear purpose of the Book of the Revelation is to show us things to come and we need to learn those things.
      1. When you’re certain of your future, then you can concentrate on your present.


  • The Comforting Promise of the Book – vv. 2-3

Revelation comes with a promise.

who bore witness to the word of God and to the testimony of Jesus Christ, even to all that he saw.

Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of this prophecy, and blessed are those who hear, and who keep what is written in it, for the time is near.


  1. Prerequisites for the Blessing
    1. Read It
      1. There’s a blessing if we will read it, and heed it, and keep it. It is a blessing book.
      2. It is the one book in the Bible that some people tell us to ignore, but it is the one book of the Bible that brings a special blessing.
      3. How many here want to be blessed?
      4. How much time do you spend in the Word of God and in the Book of the Revelation?
      5. It is a blessing to those who read, those who hear, and those who obey this word.
    2. Hear It
      1. And then, hear it. It’s one thing to read; it’s another thing to hear it.
      2. Jesus said later on to the churches, “He that has ears to hear, let him hear” (Matthew 11:15).
      3. You can still read it and not “hear” it.
      4. Did your mother ever say to you, “Do you hear me?”
      5. She meant, “Did you hear it? Did it get in? Did it sink in?”
      6. We are to read it, and we are to hear it.
    3. Keep It
      1. And then, we are to keep it.
      2. Lots of people have a curiosity about the future; but if you read this Book of the Revelation and you hear it, you’re going to obey it.
      3. There are some commands in this book, and one of them is to bring souls to Jesus.
        • Revelation 22:17 And let the one who hears say, “Come.” And let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who desires take the water of life without price.
        • If you really believe that the end of all things is close at hand, then you are not going to be casual about your unsaved mother and father, brother or sister, neighbor and person you work with.
        • The Bible is the only book I know of that can bless you—and especially the Book of the Revelation as you read it, hear it, and keep it.


  1. Why the Book of the Revelation Will Bless
    1. It Will Unlock the Mystery of History
      1. In the eastern religions, history just goes in a cycle, round and round and round.
      2. That’s why they believe in reincarnation: you just keep coming back, and coming back, and coming back, until you get it right.
      3. But Bible history is linear: we are all moving toward a goal – the return and reign of Jesus Christ!
      4. “the kingdoms of this world [will] become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ” (Revelation 11:15).
    2. It Will Bring Sense to Our Suffering
      1. Revelation 21:4 “And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away”.
    3. It Will Give You Stability in Chaotic Times
      1. Have you been listening to the news lately?
      2. These days we are living in are absolutely incredible.
      3. But in Revelation 1:8 our Lord Jesus said, I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.
      4. Jesus is saying to us “Trust Me, I have everything in control!”
      5. There was a man named Charles Blondin who used to walk a tightrope.
        • He was well-known in his day and famously walked across Niagra Falls on a tightrope.
        • He was a master of balance and somebody asked him, “How do you manage to do that without falling?”
        • He said, “Look on the other side there, in the direction in which I am walking. Do you see that silver star? I placed it there and I never take my eyes away from it. I put my eyes on that star, and I walk toward it; and that’s what gives me stability.”
      6. The Second Coming of Jesus Christ can give you stability in your life!
      7. Jesus is the Bright and Morning Star and you need to keep your eyes on Him in these days in which we live.
      8. He will give you hope and stability in these chaotic times.


  1. The Certain Prophecy of the Book
    1. For the Time Is at Hand – v. 3

Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of this prophecy, and blessed are those who hear, and who keep what is written in it, for the time is near. underscore this—“for the time is near”—“the time is at hand” (Revelation 1:3).

  1. What does that mean?
    1. That does not mean that the time is immediate; it means that it is imminent.
    2. It means that Jesus Christ can come at any moment.
    3. We’re not waiting on some event in history to take place before Jesus comes again.
    4. He may come at any moment.
    5. We are always living on the edge of eternity.
    6. Jesus may come this afternoon. Always, “the time is at hand” (Revelation 1:3).
  2. Some other scriptures
    1. 1 Peter 4:7 The end of all things is at hand; therefore be self-controlled and sober-minded for the sake of your prayers.—now, Peter wrote that 2,000 years ago.
    2. 1 Corinthians 10:11 Now these things happened to them as an example, but they were written down for our instruction, on whom the end of the ages has come.
      • That was written 2,000 years ago.
    3. James 5:8 You also, be patient. Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand
    4. 1 John 2:18 Children, it is the last hour, and as you have heard that antichrist is coming, so now many antichrists have come. Therefore we know that it is the last hour..
  3. Were all of these wrong?
    1. No, they were all right—every one of them.
    2. For 2,000 years we’ve been living in the last days.
    3. We are not waiting on something to be fulfilled before Jesus can come!
    4. Every Christian must always be living in the light of the imminent coming of the Lord Jesus Christ.
    5. The only thing we are waiting for is for Jesus to appear in the sky and that can happen at any moment.


  1. Signs of His Coming
    1. There are signs of His coming.
      1. This Book of the Revelation tells us of some horrific things that are going to come.
      2. There is a coming one-world government headed up by Satan’s superman, the antichrist.
      3. There is coming a one-world religion, an amalgamation of all the world’s religions. We’re seeing that happen right today.
      4. There is an incredible increase of knowledge, where all of the world will be systematized—everyone given a mark, a number, not being able to buy or sell without that and that is happing as we sit here today.
      5. There is a great world war, great plagues (viruses and diseases with painful boils), great famines and a devastation called the Great Tribulation.
    2. All of these things we see either happening now or in the not too distant future.
    3. But, in spite of all of that, Jesus may come at any moment.


  1. Exponentiality
    1. Richard Swenson is an M.D., but he’s also a futurist.
      1. He talks about how history is coming to a climax—even if you don’t have a Bible you can see this.
      2. He speaks of a principle called exponentiality.
      3. That’s just a big word that simply means we’re getting more and more faster and faster in history.
      4. Things are changing so quickly!
    2. One thing that I have learned in my life is that when things come, you can’t reverse them.
      1. You can’t un-discover things—television, the Internet, genetic engineering, robotics.
      2. Things are changing so quickly and they will never go back!
    3. To illustrate the concept of exponentiality Dr. Swenson says that if you were to take a piece of paper and fold it one time, and then fold that fold another time, and fold it 40 times it would go to the moon!
      1. Just one piece of paper doubled in thickness 40 times.
      2. That’s the principle of exponentiality.
      3. If you fold it 100 times, it would go past the Milky Way to the far recesses of the universe.
    4. That’s the principle of exponentiality, and that is what is happening in our society.
      1. If you were to take all of history’s population and make a line from the beginning of creation that line would be relatively flat until 1700.
      2. Then by 1800’s 1.0 B, 1900 1.65B. 1928 2B, 1960 3B, 1975 4B, 1987 5B, 1999 6B, 2011 7B, 2022 7.9B. – Now it is going straight up.
      3. That’s the way things are changing exponentially.
      4. You see, things happen suddenly – This is what the Bible says: “things which must [quickly] come to pass” (Revelation 1:1), when they happen.
    5. Think how our world has been changed since September 11, 2001.
      1. One day, we went to work, the sun was shining, everything was normal.
      2. Suddenly, everything changes—just like that.
      3. The Book of the Revelation talks about “things which must soon [swiftly] come to pass” (Revelation 1:1)
      4. We are living in a day that is quickly coming to a climax—“things which must quickly come to pass”
    6. We have increasing exponentiality—more and more, faster and faster.
      1. As Daniel said, “In the last days, knowledge shall increase” (Daniel 12:4).
      2. Then Paul said to Timothy, “Evil men … shall wax worse and worse” (2 Timothy 3:13).
      3. More and more, deeper and deeper degradation and sin — how long can it last before it all comes together in a conflagration and an explosion?
      4. You say, “Bro. Dan, are you a pessimist?” No! I am a glowing optimist, because I know that “the kingdoms of this world will be the kingdom of our Lord and His Christ” (Revelation 11:15).
      5. And, I know that all of these things have been prophesied in this book, and I know how it all ends!


  1. It’s No Secret
    1. Years ago, Billy Graham was speaking in Los Angeles in a revival.
      1. A man named Stuart Hamblin, a Hollywood actor, a songwriter, and a cowboy, got saved.
      2. Later he was talking to his friend John Wayne, he said, “John, I’ve given my heart to God; I’ve been saved. John, you ought to do that, too.”
      3. And then, Stu Hamblin said to John Wayne, “It’s no secret what God can do—what He’s done for others. He’ll do for you.”
      4. John Wayne said, “Stu, that’s beautiful. You ought to write a song about that.”
      5. And he did: “It Is No Secret What God Can Do.”
    2. The way to be ready for the Second Coming of Jesus is to receive the One who came first of all, who died on that cross.
      1. It’s no secret what God can do; what He’s done for me He’ll do for you.
      2. You need Jesus Christ, and I’m telling you on the authority of this Word that He’ll save you today and He’ll keep you saved if you’ll trust Him.