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Saturday, November 22, 2014


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Contents | Chapter 1


The Book of Revelations
An Appeal For Right Understanding
By Paul Billington






We ought to appreciate and give full weight to the fact that the Revelation is part of the Word of God. It cannot be unimportant. It is the last statement, completing the word of God. In the previous 4,000 years there had been substantially a continuous voice of God among his people. Now, silence, apart from the instruction of this last book; it has to cover some 2,000 years to our present day. It must be important. It is not easy to understand because it involves history and is presented in symbols. But with prayer and persistence believers will be able to understand.

I support this appeal to understand the Revelation. Let us approach the book in a spirit of humility, recognizing that Brother Thomas, under the good hand of God, successfully laboured until he had re-stated saving truth centred in "the Hope of Israel"; and that each one of us today is indebted to him and to God for our hope of salvation. This being so, should we not expect God to allow him to continue his work in the rest of his days, to expound this last book of the Bible, this book which is particularly our book? We ought at least to give his exposition a fair and patient study before turning to the new "alternatives."

Surely God did not intend his last book to be a debating ground. It is noteworthy that the various "alternatives" are mutually contradictory, and this may well indicate that they are departures from the "the old paths." They have not helped but rather have brought confusion, uncertainty and discouragement.

There are two major objectives in the Revelation. First, to encourage us by being able to recognize the controlling hand of God in world affairs: He prophesied the events and they have come to pass. So today we must rest in the confidence that events and our lives are still in His hands. Secondly, it instructs us as to how God sees the world religious and political today and it stirs us up to be faithful witnesses for his honour. As Brother Billington shows, both these prime objectives are largely destroyed in the "alternative" interpretations. One can say that the growing spirit of tolerance towards the world, our unwillingness to expose error and our disinclination to be regarded as uncharitable, will only be arrested by a right grasp of the Revelation.

Graham Pearce. England.



Several brethren have taken valuable time to read through the original manuscript of this booklet. Their comment and suggestions have been most helpful in preparing the final form. The writer expresses thanks to these brethren for their valued encouragement. I should particularly like to mention the help of Bro. H. D. Bartholomew who has supported the concept from the outset. The quality and scale of this production would have been impossible without his assistance, and without the help of those members of the Vernon ecclesia who have so generously contributed their time and skills in the service of the truth.
In appealing for a right understanding of the book of Revelation, it has been necessary to refer to the work of those who offer "alternative" views. It should be understood that this writer has spoken to those concerned, and has discussed their interpretations with them at some length.

P. A. B. [Paul A. Billington]

Go to: Chapter 1: How Vital Is This Issue?