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Revelation 1Contemporary English Version (CEV)

This is what God showed to Jesus Christ, so that he could tell his servants what must happen soon. Christ then sent his angel with the message to his servant John. And John told everything that he had seen about God’s message and about what Jesus Christ had said and done.

God will bless everyone who reads this prophecy to others,[a] and he will bless everyone who hears and obeys it. The time is almost here.

From John to the seven churches in Asia.[b]

I pray that you
    will be blessed
with kindness and peace
from God, who is and was
    and is coming.
May you receive
    kindness and peace
from the seven spirits
    before the throne of God.
May kindness and peace
    be yours
from Jesus Christ,
    the faithful witness.

Jesus was the first
    to conquer death,
and he is the ruler
    of all earthly kings.
Christ loves us,
    and by his blood
he set us free
    from our sins.
He lets us rule as kings
and serve God his Father
    as priests.
To him be glory and power
    forever and ever! Amen.
Look! He is coming
    with the clouds.
Everyone will see him,
even the ones who stuck
    a sword through him.
All people on earth
will weep because of him.
    Yes, it will happen! Amen.

The Lord God says, “I am Alpha and Omega,[c] the one who is and was and is coming. I am God All-Powerful!”

A Vision of the Risen Lord

I am John, a follower together with all of you. We suffer because Jesus is our king, but he gives us the strength to endure. I was sent to Patmos Island,[d] because I had preached God’s message and had told about Jesus. 10 On the Lord’s day the Spirit took control of me, and behind me I heard a loud voice that sounded like a trumpet. 11 The voice said, “Write in a book what you see. Then send it to the seven churches in Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea.”[e]

12 When I turned to see who was speaking to me, I saw seven gold lampstands. 13 There with the lampstands was someone who seemed to be the Son of Man.[f] He was wearing a robe that reached down to his feet, and a gold cloth was wrapped around his chest. 14 His head and his hair were white as wool or snow, and his eyes looked like flames of fire. 15 His feet were glowing like bronze being heated in a furnace, and his voice sounded like the roar of a waterfall. 16 He held seven stars in his right hand, and a sharp double-edged sword was coming from his mouth. His face was shining as bright as the sun at noon.

17 When I saw him, I fell at his feet like a dead person. But he put his right hand on me and said:

Don’t be afraid! I am the first, the last, 18 and the living one. I died, but now I am alive forevermore, and I have the keys to death and the world of the dead.[g] 19 Write what you have seen and what is and what will happen after these things. 20 I will explain the mystery of the seven stars that you saw at my right side and the seven gold lampstands. The seven stars are the angels[h] of the seven churches, and the lampstands are the seven churches.

Footnotes:

  1. 1.3 who reads this prophecy to others: A public reading, in a worship service.
  2. 1.4 Asia: The section 1.4—3.22 is in the form of a letter. Asia was in the eastern part of the Roman Empire and is present day Turkey.
  3. 1.8 Alpha and Omega: The first and last letters of the Greek alphabet, which sometimes mean “first” and “last.”
  4. 1.9 Patmos Island: A small island where prisoners were sometimes kept by the Romans.
  5. 1.11 Ephesus. . . Laodicea: Ephesus was in the center with the six other cities forming a half-circle around it.
  6. 1.13 Son of Man: That is, Jesus.
  7. 1.18 keys to death and the world of the dead: That is, power over death and the world of the dead.
  8. 1.20 angels: Perhaps guardian angels that represent the churches, or they may be church leaders or messengers sent to the churches.

Revelation 1New International Version (NIV)

Prologue

The revelation from Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants what must soon take place. He made it known by sending his angel to his servant John, who testifies to everything he saw—that is, the word of God and the testimony of Jesus Christ. Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of this prophecy, and blessed are those who hear it and take to heart what is written in it, because the time is near.

Greetings and Doxology

John,

To the seven churches in the province of Asia:

Grace and peace to you from him who is, and who was, and who is to come, and from the seven spirits[a] before his throne, and from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth.

To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood, and has made us to be a kingdom and priests to serve his God and Father—to him be glory and power for ever and ever! Amen.

“Look, he is coming with the clouds,”[b]
    and “every eye will see him,
even those who pierced him”;
    and all peoples on earth “will mourn because of him.”[c]
So shall it be! Amen.

“I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, “who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty.”

John’s Vision of Christ

I, John, your brother and companion in the suffering and kingdom and patient endurance that are ours in Jesus, was on the island of Patmos because of the word of God and the testimony of Jesus. 10 On the Lord’s Day I was in the Spirit, and I heard behind me a loud voice like a trumpet, 11 which said: “Write on a scroll what you see and send it to the seven churches: to Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia and Laodicea.”

12 I turned around to see the voice that was speaking to me. And when I turned I saw seven golden lampstands, 13 and among the lampstands was someone like a son of man,[d] dressed in a robe reaching down to his feet and with a golden sash around his chest. 14 The hair on his head was white like wool, as white as snow, and his eyes were like blazing fire. 15 His feet were like bronze glowing in a furnace, and his voice was like the sound of rushing waters. 16 In his right hand he held seven stars, and coming out of his mouth was a sharp, double-edged sword. His face was like the sun shining in all its brilliance.

17 When I saw him, I fell at his feet as though dead. Then he placed his right hand on me and said: “Do not be afraid. I am the First and the Last. 18 I am the Living One; I was dead, and now look, I am alive for ever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and Hades.

19 “Write, therefore, what you have seen, what is now and what will take place later. 20 The mystery of the seven stars that you saw in my right hand and of the seven golden lampstands is this: The seven stars are the angels[e] of the seven churches, and the seven lampstands are the seven churches.

Footnotes:

  1. Revelation 1:4 That is, the sevenfold Spirit
  2. Revelation 1:7 Daniel 7:13
  3. Revelation 1:7 Zech. 12:10
  4. Revelation 1:13 See Daniel 7:13.
  5. Revelation 1:20 Or messengers
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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