1:1–3 The main portion of Revelation (1:4–22:21) has the form of a letter, with greetings, body, and farewell. This Prologue helps orient readers to the content they may expect. Stress is placed on the divine authority of the message (from God and Jesus Christ), its certainty (note the word “must” in v. 1), and its crucial relevance (v. 3). God makes thorough provision for the communication process: the message originates with God the Father, is given to Jesus Christ, and is made known to John through an angel (v. 1). John testifies by writing it (v. 2), and all are encouraged to read and hear (v. 3).
Revelation stresses that though it comes in symbolic form, it is understandable. It is “revelation,” disclosing rather than hiding truth (v. 1). It is for “his servants,” not a special elite (v. 1). God expects Christians to “keep what is written,” to profit spiritually (v. 3). A blessing encourages people to read and hear (v. 3).