Revelation Day 3 - Learning to See

Revelation 1:4-8

3D glasses create an optical illusion by feeding different images to your eyes. Old school glasses use red and blue images to create the illusion of three-dimensional images. Without the glasses, everything looks blurry. With the glasses, you see something that’s been hiding in plain sight.

That’s a good metaphor for the last book of the Bible, the Book of Revelation. Revelation helps us see better. What we see everyday isn't reality. Powerful political leaders who pervert justice are really monsters in disguise. Babylon is the only way to describe the empire of cultural values that capture us and lead us away from God. Revelation helps us better see the way we've compromised our faith.

Like Neo in the movie The Matrix, Revelation wants to free our mind to see the hidden layers of reality. Like a pair of 3D glasses, Revelation helps us see what's been hiding in plain sight.

At the same time, we can't take John's visions literally. He's not really telling us in Revelation 12 to watch out for a seven-headed dragon. John is a spiritual artist. Think of the way artists help us see truth by making us see differently. Impressionists capture the energy and color of a scene but the people in a city park aren’t literally thousands of dots of paint.

John’s trying to give us what Pastor Eugene Peterson called a “prayerful imagination.” We’ll only ever get that imagination with the help of Jesus Christ. Revelation reveals reality. Don’t stress about decoding God’s calendar. Instead let the book free you to see the world through Jesus.

When have you been surprised to finally see something that was “hiding” in plain sight?

Help me, O Lord, to understand your word to us. Open my eyes to see the world through Jesus. Give me a prayerful imagination. Amen.
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