Revelation 1:7-8

The Lord Who Is Coming

The End Times

In my last post, we began our verse-by-verse study of The Revelation of Yeshua the Messiah to Yochanan.  In this post, we continue to unpack Chapter 1 of Revelation.

7 ”Look! He is coming with the clouds!  Every eye will see him, including those who pierced him; and all the tribes of the Land will mourn him. Yes! Amen!  8 “I am the Alpha and the Omega” says Adonai, God of heaven’s armies, the One who is, who was and who is coming.” ~ Revelation 1:7-8 (CJB)

Verse 7 states the theme of the book of Revelation, The Second Coming of Yeshua the Messiah in a way that the world will be unable to ignore. When predicting His own second coming Yeshua Himself combined the same phrases from Daniel and Zechariah.  Yeshua, in paraphrasing from Zechariah 12:10-14 and Daniel 7:13-14, stated: “Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, all the tribes of the Land will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with tremendous power and glory.” ~ Matthew 24:30 (CJB) Those who pierced him. This taken directly from Zechariah 12:10.

Sterns writes: “… this great Messianic prophecy from the Tanakh speaks of the day when the entire Jewish people will recognize Yeshua, pierced on the execution-stake, as the Messiah and as fully identified with God, “me, whom they pierced.” [1]

In Acts 1 we’re told Yeshua “will come back to you in just the same way as you saw him go into heaven ~ Acts 1:11 (CJB).   Zechariah prophesied “On that day His [Yeshua] feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, which lies to the east of Yerushalayim; and the Mount of Olives will be split in half from east to west, to make a huge valley.  Half of the mountain will move toward the north, and half of it toward the south.” ~ Zechariah 14:4 (CJB)

Who is speaking in verse 8?  The expression the One who is, who was and who is coming was used by Yochanan in verse 4 to refer to God the Father.  However, the expression fits equally well with Yeshua.  The author of Hebrews writes: 8 Yeshua the Messiah is the same yesterday, today and forever.” ~ Hebrews 13:8 (CJB).

The identification of the Alpha and the Omega is a reminder of Isaiah’s description of God the Father: “6 Thus says Adonai, Isra’el’s King and Redeemer, Adonai-Tzva’ot: ‘I am the first, and I am the last; besides me there is no God.’” ~ Isaiah 44:6 (CJB)

When we get to Revelation 1:17-18 the speaker identifies Himself to Yochanan as: 17 “… I am the First and the Last, 18 the Living One.  I was dead, but look! — I am alive forever and ever!  And I hold the keys to Death and Sh’ol.” ~ Revelation 1:17-18 (CJB)

In the last chapter of Revelation, Yeshua self-identifies as: “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.” ~ Revelation 22:13 (ESV)

Yochanan, as well as other Biblical authors, ascribe to Yeshua titles that historically had only been attributed to Adonai (God the Father, literally “the Lord”) in the Tanakh.

Special Comparative Note on Revelation 1:7 [2]

Not surprisingly, the opening statement: Look! He is coming with the clouds provides fodder for the divergent views of what is meant by this statement.

Historicist Approach: See the material presented by the Futurists below.
Preterist Approach: The most elaborate argument for this phrase is expounded by some Preterist who suggest it does not predict a literal Second Coming, but a figurative description of Yeshua coming in vengeance to destroy Jerusalem, not in person, but by using the Roman armies in 70 CE.  Space & time doesn’t allow me to go in-depth on each of their arguments for each portion of verse 7, but the one that did get my attention is all the tribes of the Land will mourn him.  This alludes to a prophesy of the inhabitants of Jerusalem seen in Zechariah 10:12. This view is further supported in the fact that Israel is divisible into tribes, whereas the earth is generally divided in nations.
Futurist Approach: Futurists take this statement as somewhat literally seeing in it a prediction of Yeshua’s Second Coming in the clouds at the end of the present age.  This view is followed by most Historicists and Idealists as well.
Idealist Approach: Idealists see this simply as one of several references to The Second Coming.

Many will not find the Preterist arguments sufficient to overthrow the more dominant opinion, and the ultimate decision on the meaning of this passage will, in the final analysis, depend upon the reader’s view in total of Revelation.

In my next post, we continue in Chapter 1 on the verse-by-verse study of this fascinating prophesy.

Click here for PDF version.

[1] Jewish New Testament Commentary by David Stern.

[2] Material in this chart is taken from “Revelation: Four Views, Revised & Updated” by Steve Gregg

4 thoughts on “Revelation 1:7-8

    1. And a gracious God’s morning to you as well, my friend. Have a great Lord’s Day. Hopefully, I will have recovered enough from my knee replacement surgery by next week to actually attend service rather than watching it online.

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