RAMONA LOWE
THE BOOK OF REVELATION ARTIST
   The Book of Revelation with commentary by Dr. Henry M. Morris and paintings by Ramona Lowe
The paintings are a work in progress and the finished pieces are highlighted in red on Page 2


                        The Revelation Record  Dr. Henry M. Morris  

                 A Scientific and Devotional Commentary on the Book of Revelation

Preface

The Revelation Record was undertaken only after many years of study and teaching in this remarkable and climactic book of the Holy Scriptures, the last book of the Bible.  Even as promised in the opening verses of the book (Revelation 1:3), it has proved to be of great personal blessing, and I hope the results of this present study will also be of benefit and blessing to others who may read it.

Scientists do not often write expositions of Revelation, but the book is so full of allusions to natural phenomena that this lack of scientific attention is surprising.  Consequently, what might seem at first to be an unlikely background may actually, I hope, be helpful toward filling a real need.

Since so many previous writers have published studies on the Book of Revelation, the reader has a right to know what else, if anything, is different about this commentary.  In addition to the scientific flavor associated with the many natural phenomena and physical events described in Revelation, I have tried to emphasize the physical reality of the great events recounted in the book.  The Book of Revelation is not a theological treatise but an actual record of the final phases of world history, when the mighty King of Creation undertakes to finish the work He began long ago.

Furthermore, I have tried to follow a strictly literal and sequential approach to the events narrated, on the assumption that the best interpretation of a historical record is no interpretation but simply letting the divine Author of the record say what He says and assuming He says what He means.

Although many other writers have also tried to follow such an approach, the student may well find this to be the most literal approach he has encountered.  Some have felt that scientific considerations preclude a literal exposition of certain portions of Revelation, but I have tried to show the plausibility of all such sections.

The difficult passages have not been avoided.  An attempt has been made to explain every verse in detail, yet all in the context of a narrative style which I hope will show it all to be natural and believable in the fullest sense.  In addition, since the Book of Revelation presents the most exalted portrait of the Lord Jesus Christ and the most profound epic of His ultimate triumph to be found in all the Bible, I have tried to make this a truly devotional and Christ-honoring exposition.

In a very real sense, the Book of Revelation is the sequel to the Book of Genesis, the two books together bounding all history and bounding all of God’s revelations to mankind.  They constitute the alpha and omega of God’s written Word, the Book of Beginnings and the Book of Unveilings.

Thus this commentary, The Revelation Record, is in a peculiar way a sequel to my earlier commentary, The Genesis Record (published in 1976).  As in The Genesis Record, I have used a narrative style of exposition rather than a critical exegetical approach, intending this book for practical use by the busy pastor or teacher as well as for devotional use in personal or home Bible study rather than for critical analysis by seminarians.

For the same reasons, the Authorized King James Version is the basic text followed in this commentary, rather than one of the more recent translations.  This is still the most familiar and most widely used Bible in the English-speaking world, as well as unquestionably the most majestic and beautiful.  It is also highly accurate and reliable.  Whenever its meaning is not clear, I believe the exposition will satisfactorily indicate the proper meaning.

The serious student of the Book of Revelation will note immediately that I am following the literalistic, futuristic, sequential, premillennial, pretribulaional interpretation of the book.  This approach has been assumed to be the most natural, and therefore the most proper, way to understand the book.

This does not mean, however, that I am unappreciative of the studies and writings of the numerous commentators who have followed different routes of interpretation.  Many godly and scholarly men have used a wide variety of approaches (amillennial, postmillennial, preterist, historical, cyclic, posttribulational, midtribulational, etc.).  However, this book is quite voluminous even as it stands, so that trying to deal with the wide variety of alternate views in the same volume would make it impractically long.  If the reader wants other points of view, he may consult other commentaries, of which a great abundance are available.

I personally am convinced, of course, that the literal and sequential approach is the most natural, most scientific, most Christ-honoring, and most soul-satisfying way to understand Revelation.  Therefore, although I respect others who disagree, I have limited my own exposition to that approach, and I would assume the reader will use it with that understanding.

The reader will also note that, in following a narrative style, I have often attempted to read between the lines, as it were.  One can use a sanctified imagination to visualize details that are not specifically stated in Scripture as long as it isn’t done in a way that contradicts Scripture.  These interpolations are not intended dogmatically but to visualize the way in which the brief statements of the inspired text may reasonably be fulfilled when the time comes.  The reader can always discern what is specific revelation and what is interpretive interpolation and extrapolation by referring to the actual text which is being expounded.  Each verse of the text, for ease of reference, is incorporated in the book just before the commentary on the verse.

I have been thankful for the wide and favorable reception given my “alpha” commentary, The Genesis Record.  This “omega” commentary, The Revelation Record, is based on the same premises, so I trust this also will help many people, if the Lord so wills.  These two great books of the Bible comprise the foundation and capstone of God’s inspired Word to man, and it is vital that Christians believe and understand them if they would have a truly effective life and witness in today’s confused and hurting world.  It is my prayer that God may be pleased to use The Revelation Record to that end.

                                                                                                 Henry M. Morris

                                                                                                 San Diego, California

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