The Beatitudes are well-known as part of Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount. However, there are also beatitudes in the book of Revelation regarding the future. This article expounds on the Beatitudes of Revelation.
What are Beatitudes?
Beatitudes are sayings most notably of Jesus, specifically nine blessings in His famous Sermon on the Mount in the Gospel of Matthew and four in the Sermon on the Plain in the Gospel of Luke. The beatitudes of Revelation contain even more blessings.
Let us look at the ones contained in the Sermon on the Mount. Matt 5:3-12
3. Blessed are the poor in Spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
4. Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.
5. Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.
6. Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.
7. Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.
8. Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.
9. Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.
10. Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
11. Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
12. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.
These declarations show how we, as Christians, are to live for God. In other words, these statements represent what should be-our-attitude
(beatitude) as we live for God.
The Greek word used at the beginning of each beatitude is the word μακάριος (makarios), which means “blessed,” “happy,” or “prosperous. “Initially, this word did not have religious implications, but more accurately, it was used to denote any privileged individual as measured by material security and prosperity.
The Beatitudes of Revelation
The beatitudes of Revelation are not as famous as those in the Sermon on the Mount or The Sermon on the Plain, but they are just as important. There are seven of them. The first is contained in Rev 1:3, which reads,
3 Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand.
This verse closes John’s salutation. A special blessing is promised to those who read, hear, and keep the things written in Revelation. As it reads, “The time is at hand.” Now is the time for the completion of those things that are written. This beatitude is the first of seven blessings throughout the Book of Revelation. Just as there are nine blessings in the sermon Jesus gave in Matthew 5, these blessings are in effect from the time of John the Revelator until the end of time. We are living in a time when the study of Revelation is essential. Studying the beatitudes of Revelation gives us hope and encouragement for the future.
The next blessing or beatitude is contained in Rev 14:13, which reads:
13. And I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Write, Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: Yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them.
There is a special blessing for those who die in the Lord, as the scripture reads, “From henceforth,” or as the NKJV says, “From now on.” The timing of this blessing is evident. The prophetic era of this section of Scripture is recognized as ” the hour of God’s judgment”
(Revelation 14:7, the third angel’s message). It is known that the hour of God’s judgment began on October 22nd, 1844, when Jesus entered the Most Holy Place of the heavenly sanctuary. For more details on the year 1844, please read the article, What is 1844 About, on this website.
It is during the hour of God’s judgment that the third angel’s
message is proclaimed. Numerous religious Saints have rested in the virtues of Jesus and have died in the Lord from the beginning of time. However, the blessing described in this verse is for those who die in the Lord. “from now on,“ or from 1844 until the return of Jesus.
It is not just any righteous individual who dies after 1844 that this blessing is pronounced. This blessing is given explicitly to those who have endeavored in the heart of the third angel’s message from 1844 until Jesus’ second coming. Those individuals who have declared the Third Angel’s message since 1844 have the assurance that their works will follow them even after they have passed on and are laid in the grave. As the Scripture reads, “…that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them.”
The next beatitude in Revelation is found in Rev 16:15.
15 “Behold, I am coming as a thief. Blessed is he who watches, and keeps his garments, lest he walk naked and they see his shame.” NKJV
Here, we have Jesus Himself commenting regarding the character of His return. He says, “I am coming as a thief.” The arrival of Jesus is described as a thief in several passages of Scripture, such as Matt. 24:42-44, I Thess. 5:2-4, 2 Pet. 3:10, Rev. 3:3. Just as a thief arrives unexpectedly, Jesus will also arrive unexpectedly. He arrives twice as a thief: first at the close of probation and next, the second coming. The Scriptures give us ample time to avoid our being taken by surprise.
Next, we have the beatitude, “Blessed is he who watches, and keeps his garments, lest he walk naked and they see his shame.” This is the third of seven “blessed” or beatitudes in Revelation.
Jesus not only warns of how swiftly His Second Coming will be but encourages His people to watch for His arrival (cf. Matt. 24:42, 25:13). Those who do will be blessed. There is a particular blessing for those who watch and keep their garments.
So, how do we watch in order to avoid being surprised by Jesus’ second coming? When Jesus was in the Garden of Gethsemane (Matthew 26:40-41), He told them to “watch and pray.” In order to watch and be ready, one must make a concerted effort to live righteously and maintain an effective prayer life.
While we do need to heed the signs of the Second Coming, we must additionally have a connection to God through prayer. Jesus said in Mark 13:33, “Take ye heed, watch and pray: for ye know not when the time is.” We keep our garments clean by watching, praying, and living righteously. Those who fail to repent of worldly living will find themselves naked and ashamed. Even those who have professed Christ but have not watched, prayed, and kept their garments of Christ’s righteousness by Faith will find that their nakedness has become apparent when Christ returns.
The next blessing or beatitude is contained in Rev 19:9, which reads: “And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God.”
This is the fourth blessing in Revelation. This announced blessing is the culmination of rejoicing over Babylon’s destruction. The call to rejoice on this occasion is found in Rev. 18:20. For more details on Babylon, please see the article Revelation 18:4 on this website.
The early verses (vss. 1-7) continue the rejoicing of Babylon’s demise. Verse 7 introduces the marriage of the Lamb. This is symbolic language. The Lamb is Jesus, and the bride is the New Jerusalem (Rev. 21:9-27). After Babylon, the false church, is destroyed, the marriage supper of the Lamb will take place.
In this fourth blessing, the angel describes the special blessing of those who are called to “the marriage supper of the lamb.” In order to be invited to this marriage supper, we must have our clean garments, which is the righteousness of Christ by Faith. God has invited us to be at the marriage supper of the Lamb. The condition for being accepted as a guest at the wedding is to have the wedding garment (Matt. 22:1-14). There are many who believe that they have this garment already. Yet Christ says that we do not know that we are spiritually naked (Rev. 3:17). Christ sends a warning, in the previous beatitude (Rev. 16:15), to watch and keep our garments because the shame of the nakedness will become apparent during the last seven plagues. And it will prevent us from being sealed at the table of the marriage supper of the Lamb.
The angel affirmed that those invited to the wedding feast would be “blessed”
because they had accepted the invitation. They merely reacted to the invitation! From the angel, through John, to the written page, the invitation goes out to us. We must convey to others that there is still time to respond.
The next blessing or beatitude is contained in Rev 20:6, which reads, “Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years.”
The righteous resurrected in the first resurrection are said to be “blessed and holy.” In the second Beatitude (Rev. 14:6), those blessed are part of the special resurrection for those who died in the faith of the Third Angel’s message, which began to be proclaimed in 1844. The first resurrection is much broader and encompasses all of the righteous who have died. Those who are part of the first resurrection are blessed. They will live and reign with Christ during the Millennium
and have eternal life. They will never die again. The Saints who are part of the first resurrection are also called holy. 1 Peter 1:15-16 describes what it means to be holy, “But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.”
The word “conversation” means conduct And represents all aspects of our lives. We are to be holy as God is holy. Those who have been transferred by the power of God into holy men and women throughout the ages rest in their graves. However, they will be resurrected at the Second Coming. They have died in faith, but they will have a part in the first resurrection. They are “blessed and holy.”
The next blessing or beatitude is in Rev 22:7, which reads, “Behold, I come quickly: Here, we have the announcement of the manner of Jesus’ return. This promise is given in the last chapter of the book. The prophecies of the book must be fulfilled before Jesus returns. The assurance of his rapid return is dependent upon all of the prophecies of the first 21 chapters meeting their completion. The Three Angels’ messages of the Judgment Hour, which began in 1844, must do their work in producing the 144,000
of the last days. When God has generated His special people for the last days, He can justly say, “Behold, I come quickly.” We are now living in the time of the proclamation of the three angels’ messages and the development of the 144,000. This promise of the soon return of Jesus is more eminent and inevitable than it has ever been. This saying of Christ is faithful and true. He surely is coming soon.
The Scripture closes with “blessed is he that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy of this book.” Here, we have the 6th of the 7th beatitude in the Book of Revelation. Indeed, there is a blessing for the ones who adhere to what is written in this book.
This promised blessing is very similar to the first blessing or beatitude of Revelation 1:3. The context of the blessing in this verse is related to the soon return of Jesus because He is coming quickly. Those who will be ready for the second coming are those individuals who study the prophetic messages in the books of Revelation and Daniel. Only those who study diligently and are prepared for the Second Coming will be ready. The messages that lead to being ready for the Second Coming are found in the prophecies of the Book of Revelation and in harmony with the Book of Daniel. The beatitudes of Revelation are most applicable today.
The next and last blessing or beatitude is found in Rev 22:14, which reads, “Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.” When Jesus says, “Blessed are they that do His commandments,” He is referring to all of the righteous who enter the new Jerusalem. All in the Kingdom of God are obedient to the light to the degree it was given to them. As the Christian Church fell into the great apostasy, the Sabbath was discarded for worship on the Pagan day of Sunday. God judges all of these individuals relevant to the light and opportunity for the knowledge they had.
However, those living at the world’s end will have full light. God raised the Second Advent movement to shed the light on all Ten Commandments. The faithfulness of those alive at the end of the world to all Ten Commandments represents what all the other righteous would have done if they had been given the same light and opportunities.
At the end of the world, God can decisively say that it is indeed possible to keep all Ten Commandments; that He has a people who have fully kept them. They demonstrate what all other righteous would have done if they’d been given the same opportunity. Those who do His commandments are a revelation of Him. This faithfulness is possible because Christ has finished His work as our High Priest, writing His law into our hearts and minds. Indeed, there is a blessing in allowing God to write His law into our hearts and minds so that He can be said of us. Blessed are they that do His commandments.
Next, we see in this verse that obedience is not optional. While it does not give us merit in our standing before God, it is the evidence that we have given our hearts to God. Obedience is like a passport required to partake of the Tree of Life and enter through the gates of the New Jerusalem. It is evidence that we have given consent to Christ to be the Lord of our lives so that he can live out his life within us.
The law is holy, just, and good (Romans 7:12). Jesus is Holy (Acts 3:14), just (Acts 7:52), and good (Luke 18:19). Those who do His Commandments, partake of the Tree of Life, and enter into the New Jerusalem are holy, just, and good by the grace and power of God. God ensures that there will be no further challenges to the authority and righteousness of his love. Those who keep the law by God’s grace are a demonstration that Lucifer’s charges against the law of God are false.
Having the “Right to the Tree of Life” will be a blessing, ensuring immortality and entering through the city’s gates.
The beatitudes of Revelation, the last book of the Bible, reveal the blessings that lie ahead for those who have the faith of Jesus Christ and obey all of the Commandments of God.
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