Revelation 1:1 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Revelation 1:1, NIV: "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,"

Revelation 1:1, ESV: "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, KJV: "The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to shew unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass; and he sent and signified it by his angel unto his servant John:"

Revelation 1:1, NASB: "The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him to show to His bond-servants, the things which must soon take place; and He sent and communicated it by His angel to His bond-servant John,"

Revelation 1:1, NLT: "This is a revelation from Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants the events that must soon take place. He sent an angel to present this revelation to his servant John,"

Revelation 1:1, CSB: "The revelation of Jesus Christ that God gave him to show his servants what must soon take place. He made it known by sending his angel to his servant John,"

What does Revelation 1:1 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Verse 1 identifies the entire book of Revelation as "the revelation of Jesus Christ." The word "revelation" is from the Greek word apokalypsis, meaning "a disclosure" or "an unveiling." The association of this term with John's depiction of the end times is one reason we refer to "end of the world" occurrences using the term apocalypse. Scholars differ on whether the book of Revelation should be thought of as a disclosure about Jesus Christ or a disclosure from Him. Likely, it is both.

God gave the apostle John the book of Revelation to communicate events which will take place suddenly once they begin. He revealed these events to John through an angel. Although the angel is not named, it may have been Gabriel, who carried messages to Daniel, Mary, and Zechariah (Daniel 8:16; 9:21–22; Luke 1:5–19, 26–31).

John is referred to as God's servant in Revelation 1:1. The Greek word translated "servant" means a slave. Just as a slave in ancient times did whatever his master told him to do, so John obeyed whatever God instructed him to do. In this case, God trusted John to communicate the revelation of Jesus Christ. The same Greek word, translated "servant," identifies New Testament figures such as Paul, Timothy, James, Peter, and Jude (Romans 1:1; Philippians 1:1; Titus 1:1; James 1:1; 2 Peter 1:1; and Jude 1:1).