1This book is the record of the events that Jesus Christ revealed. God gave him this revelation in order to show his servants what must happen very soon. Christ made these things known to his servant John by sending his angel to him, 2and John has told all that he has seen. This is his report concerning the message from God and the truth revealed by Jesus Christ. 3Happy is the one who reads this book, and happy are those who listen to the words of this prophetic message and obey what is written in this book! For the time is near when all these things will happen.
Greetings to the Seven Churches
4From John to the seven churches in the province of Asia:
Grace and peace be yours from God, who is, who was, and who is to come, and from the seven spirits in front of his throne, 5and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the first to be raised from death and who is also the ruler of the kings of the world.
He loves us, and by his sacrificial death he has freed us from our sins 6and made us a kingdom of priests to serve his God and Father. To Jesus Christ be the glory and power for ever and ever! Amen.
7Look, he is coming on the clouds! Everyone will see him, including those who pierced him. All peoples on earth will mourn over him. So shall it be!
8“I am the first and the last,” says the Lord God Almighty, who is, who was, and who is to come.
A Vision of Christ
9I am John, your brother, and as a follower of Jesus I am your partner in patiently enduring the suffering that comes to those who belong to his Kingdom. I was put on the island of Patmos because I had proclaimed God's word and the truth that Jesus revealed. 10On the Lord's day the Spirit took control of me, and I heard a loud voice, that sounded like a trumpet, speaking behind me. 11It said, “Write down what you see, and send the book to the churches in these seven cities: Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea.”
12I turned round to see who was talking to me, and I saw seven gold lampstands, 13and among them there was what looked like a human being, wearing a robe that reached to his feet, and a gold belt round his chest. 14His hair was white as wool, or as snow, and his eyes blazed like fire; 15his feet shone like brass that has been refined and polished, and his voice sounded like a roaring waterfall. 16He held seven stars in his right-hand, and a sharp two-edged sword came out of his mouth. His face was as bright as the midday sun. 17When I saw him, I fell down at his feet like a dead man. He placed his right-hand on me and said, “Don't be afraid! I am the first and the last.18I am the living one! I was dead, but now I am alive for ever and ever. I have authority over death and the world of the dead.19Write, then, the things you see, both the things that are now and the things that will happen afterwards.20This is the secret meaning of the seven stars that you see in my right-hand, and of the seven gold lampstands: the seven stars are the angels of the seven churches, and the seven lampstands are the seven churches.
“This is the message from the one who holds the seven stars in his right-hand and who walks among the seven gold lampstands.2I know what you have done; I know how hard you have worked and how patient you have been. I know that you cannot tolerate evil people and that you have tested those who say they are apostles but are not, and have found out that they are liars.3You are patient, you have suffered for my sake, and you have not given up.4But this is what I have against you: you do not love me now as you did at first.5Think how far you have fallen! Turn from your sins and do what you did at first. If you don't turn from your sins, I will come to you and take your lampstand from its place.6But this is what you have in your favour: you hate what the Nicolaitans do, as much as I do.
7“If you have ears, then, listen to what the Spirit says to the churches!
“To those who win the victory I will give the right to eat the fruit of the tree of life that grows in the Garden of God.
The Message to Smyrna
8“To the angel of the church in Smyrna write:
“This is the message from the one who is the first and the last, who died and lived again.9I know your troubles; I know that you are poor — but really you are rich! I know the evil things said against you by those who claim to be Jews but are not; they are a group that belongs to Satan!10Don't be afraid of anything you are about to suffer. Listen! The Devil will put you to the test by having some of you thrown into prison, and your troubles will last ten days. Be faithful to me, even if it means death, and I will give you life as your prize of victory.
11“If you have ears, then, listen to what the Spirit says to the churches!
“Those who win the victory will not be hurt by the second death.
The Message to Pergamum
12“To the angel of the church in Pergamum write:
“This is the message from the one who has the sharp two-edged sword.13I know where you live, there where Satan has his throne. You are true to me, and you did not abandon your faith in me even during the time when Antipas, my faithful witness, was killed there where Satan lives.14But there are a few things I have against you: there are some among you who follow the teaching of Balaam, who taught Balak how to lead the people of Israel into sin by persuading them to eat food that had been offered to idols and to practise sexual immorality.15In the same way you have people among you who follow the teaching of the Nicolaitans.16Now turn from your sins! If you don't, I will come to you soon and fight against those people with the sword that comes out of my mouth.
17“If you have ears, then, listen to what the Spirit says to the churches!
“To those who win the victory I will give some of the hidden manna. I will also give each of them a white stone on which is written a new name that no one knows except the one who receives it.
The Message to Thyatira
18“To the angel of the church in Thyatira write:
“This is the message from the Son of God, whose eyes blaze like fire, whose feet shine like polished brass.19I know what you do. I know your love, your faithfulness, your service, and your patience. I know that you are doing more now than you did at first.20But this is what I have against you: you tolerate that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a messenger of God. By her teaching she misleads my servants into practising sexual immorality and eating food that has been offered to idols.21I have given her time to repent of her sins, but she does not want to turn from her immorality.22And so I will throw her on to a bed where she and those who committed adultery with her will suffer terribly. I will do this now unless they repent of the wicked things they did with her.23I will also kill her followers, and then all the churches will know that I am the one who knows everyone's thoughts and wishes. I will repay each of you according to what you have done.
24“But the rest of you in Thyatira have not followed this evil teaching; you have not learnt what the others call ‘the deep secrets of Satan’. I say to you that I will not put any other burden on you.25But until I come, you must hold firmly to what you have.26-28To those who win the victory, who continue to the end to do what I want, I will give the same authority that I received from my Father: I will give them authority over the nations, to rule them with an iron rod and to break them to pieces like clay pots. I will also give them the morning star.
29“If you have ears, then, listen to what the Spirit says to the churches!
“This is the message from the one who has the seven spirits of God and the seven stars. I know what you are doing; I know that you have the reputation of being alive, even though you are dead!2So wake up, and strengthen what you still have before it dies completely. For I find that what you have done is not yet perfect in the sight of my God.3Remember, then, what you were taught and what you heard; obey it and turn from your sins. If you do not wake up, I will come upon you like a thief, and you will not even know the time when I will come.4But a few of you there in Sardis have kept your clothes clean. You will walk with me, clothed in white, because you are worthy to do so.5Those who win the victory will be clothed like this in white, and I will not remove their names from the book of the living. In the presence of my Father and of his angels I will declare openly that they belong to me.
6“If you have ears, then, listen to what the Spirit says to the churches!
The Message to Philadelphia
7“To the angel of the church in Philadelphia write:
“This is the message from the one who is holy and true. He has the key that belonged to David, and when he opens a door, no one can close it, and when he closes it, no one can open it.8I know what you do; I know that you have a little power; you have followed my teaching and have been faithful to me. I have opened a door in front of you, which no one can close.9Listen! As for that group that belongs to Satan, those liars who claim that they are Jews but are not, I will make them come and bow down at your feet. They will all know that I love you.10Because you have kept my command to endure, I will also keep you safe from the time of trouble which is coming upon the world to test all the people on earth.11I am coming soon. Keep safe what you have, so that no one will rob you of your victory prize.12I will make those who are victorious pillars in the temple of my God, and they will never leave it. I will write on them the name of my God and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which will come down out of heaven from my God. I will also write on them my new name.
13“If you have ears, then, listen to what the Spirit says to the churches!
The Message to Laodicea
14“To the angel of the church in Laodicea write:
“This is the message from the Amen, the faithful and true witness, who is the originof all that God has created.15I know what you have done; I know that you are neither cold nor hot. How I wish you were either one or the other!16But because you are lukewarm, neither hot nor cold, I am going to spit you out of my mouth!17You say, ‘I am rich and well off; I have all I need.’ But you do not know how miserable and pitiful you are! You are poor, naked, and blind.18I advise you, then, to buy gold from me, pure gold, in order to be rich. Buy also white clothing to dress yourself and cover up your shameful nakedness. Buy also some ointment to put on your eyes, so that you may see.19I rebuke and punish all whom I love. Be in earnest, then, and turn from your sins.20Listen! I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with them, and they will eat with me.21To those who win the victory I will give the right to sit beside me on my throne, just as I have been victorious and now sit by my Father on his throne.
22“If you have ears, then, listen to what the Spirit says to the churches!”
1At this point I had another vision and saw an open door in heaven. And the voice that sounded like a trumpet, which I had heard speaking to me before, said, “Come up here, and I will show you what must happen after this.”2At once the Spirit took control of me. There in heaven was a throne with someone sitting on it. 3His face gleamed like such precious stones as jasper and carnelian, and all round the throne there was a rainbow the colour of an emerald. 4In a circle round the throne were 24 other thrones, on which were seated 24 elders dressed in white and wearing crowns of gold. 5From the throne came flashes of lightning, rumblings, and peals of thunder. In front of the throne seven lighted torches were burning, which are the seven spirits of God. 6Also in front of the throne there was what looked like a sea of glass, clear as crystal.
Surrounding the throne on each of its sides, were four living creatures covered with eyes in front and behind. 7The first one looked like a lion; the second looked like a bull; the third had a face like a human face; and the fourth looked like an eagle in flight. 8Each one of the four living creatures had six wings, and they were covered with eyes, inside and out. Day and night they never stop singing:
“Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord God Almighty,
who was, who is, and who is to come.”
9The four living creatures sing songs of glory and honour and thanks to the one who sits on the throne, who lives for ever and ever. When they do so, 10the 24 elders fall down before the one who sits on the throne, and worship him who lives for ever and ever. They throw their crowns down in front of the throne and say:
11“Our Lord and God! You are worthy
to receive glory, honour, and power.
For you created all things,
and by your will they were given existence and life.”
1I saw a scroll in the right-hand of the one who sits on the throne; it was covered with writing on both sides and was sealed with seven seals. 2And I saw a mighty angel, who announced in a loud voice, “Who is worthy to break the seals and open the scroll?” 3But there was no one in heaven or on earth or in the world below who could open the scroll and look inside it. 4I cried bitterly because no one could be found who was worthy to open the scroll or look inside it. 5Then one of the elders said to me, “Don't cry. Look! The Lion from Judah's tribe, the great descendant of David, has won the victory, and he can break the seven seals and open the scroll.”
6Then I saw a Lamb standing in the centre of the throne, surrounded by the four living creatures and the elders. The Lamb appeared to have been killed. It had seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God that have been sent throughout the whole earth. 7The Lamb went and took the scroll from the right-hand of the one who sits on the throne. 8As he did so, the four living creatures and the 24 elders fell down before the Lamb. Each had a harp and gold bowls filled with incense, which are the prayers of God's people. 9They sang a new song:
“You are worthy to take the scroll
and to break open its seals.
For you were killed, and by your sacrificial death you bought for God
people from every tribe, language, nation, and race.
10You have made them a kingdom of priests to serve our God,
and they shall rule on earth.”
11Again I looked, and I heard angels, thousands and millions of them! They stood round the throne, the four living creatures, and the elders, 12and sang in a loud voice:
“The Lamb who was killed is worthy
to receive power, wealth, wisdom, and strength,
honour, glory, and praise!”
13And I heard every creature in heaven, on earth, in the world below, and in the sea — all living beings in the universe — and they were singing:
“To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb,
be praise and honour, glory and might,
for ever and ever!”
14The four living creatures answered, “Amen!” And the elders fell down and worshipped.
1Then I saw the Lamb break open the first of the seven seals, and I heard one of the four living creatures say in a voice that sounded like thunder, “Come!” 2I looked, and there was a white horse. Its rider held a bow, and he was given a crown. He rode out as a conqueror to conquer.
3Then the Lamb broke open the second seal; and I heard the second living creature say, “Come!” 4Another horse came out, a red one. Its rider was given the power to bring war on the earth, so that people should kill each other. He was given a large sword.
5Then the Lamb broke open the third seal; and I heard the third living creature say, “Come!” I looked, and there was a black horse. Its rider held a pair of scales in his hand. 6I heard what sounded like a voice coming from among the four living creatures, which said, “A litre of wheat for a day's wages, and three litres of barley for a day's wages. But do not damage the olive trees and the vineyards!”
7Then the Lamb broke open the fourth seal; and I heard the fourth living creature say, “Come!” 8I looked, and there was a pale-coloured horse. Its rider was named Death, and Hades followed close behind. They were given authority over a quarter of the earth, to kill by means of war, famine, disease, and wild animals.
9Then the Lamb broke open the fifth seal. I saw underneath the altar the souls of those who had been killed because they had proclaimed God's word and had been faithful in their witnessing. 10They shouted in a loud voice, “Almighty Lord, holy and true! How long will it be until you judge the people on earth and punish them for killing us?” 11Each of them was given a white robe, and they were told to rest a little while longer, until the complete number of their fellow-servants and fellow-Christians had been killed, as they had been.
12And I saw the Lamb break open the sixth seal. There was a violent earthquake, and the sun became black like coarse black cloth, and the moon turned completely red like blood. 13The stars fell down to the earth, like unripe figs falling from the tree when a strong wind shakes it. 14The sky disappeared like a scroll being rolled up, and every mountain and island was moved from its place. 15Then the kings of the earth, the rulers and the military chiefs, the rich and the powerful, and all other people, slave and free, hid themselves in caves and under rocks on the mountains. 16They called out to the mountains and to the rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the eyes of the one who sits on the throne and from the anger of the Lamb! 17The terrible day of their anger is here, and who can stand against it?”