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Pastor Scott Markle

The Book of Revelation & The Verb "Signified"

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Pastor Markle, excellent  study on the word "signify" as well as the Greek "semaino" used in  Rev. 1:1 (as well as in all the other verses you brought forth)! Showing again that scripture compared with other scripture actually interprets itself!  The importance of literal interpretation  is so very important as well!!! If a person is willing to allegorize (symbolize or spiritualize) scripture, I believe it shows a lack of reverence for God's word. I believe He meant what He said and said what He meant.

There are cases of symbolism in the Bible, however, in most of those cases the interpretation is also given. For instance: I once had an argument with another (supposedly) Christian on the meaning of the "seven heads" given in Rev. 17:3... the actual interpretation is GIVEN to us in verse 9 "..The seven heads are seven mountains, on which the woman sitteth". Yet this other person demanded (to my exasperation) that that is NOT what they seven heads were! I should have ended the discussion then, but instead furthered to discuss it by stating that the meaning for "mountains" were actual, physical mounds of earth, and were certainly not symbolic.... the "heads" were symbolic, the interpretation (mountains) was NOT symbolic. But this person couldn't seem to see the difference at all! Which proved to me (for the hundreth time likely) that in matter of the Bible, those who do not use a literal interpretation cannot grasp even the simplest of differences in interpretation... to them it's ALL symbolic!!! I believe those who allegorize scripture will never be able to comprehend even the most basic parts of eschatology. I've heard some say that allegorizing is a "lazy" approach, I think it's worse than "lazy", I think it show the lack of respect for God's word.

I recently started a thread here entitled "Jeremiah 49"... the reason being, I have had many discussions elsewhere (not on OB) regarding this section I referenced (Jer. 49:35-39, and even more specifically verse 36).  There are so few (who claim to study eschatology) who use a literal interpretation. I have many fellow friends who I believe DO use literal interpretation, yet they have no interest (or little interest) in eschatology and/or Bible prophecy. And the other (professing) Christian friends who DO claim to have interest in eschatology and/or Bible prophecy, but do not use literal interpretation.  Some admit they allegorize... sadly (and possibly worse) others SAY they interpret literally, but actually DO interpret allegorically, mixing and matching (a horrible mistake) of both literal and allegorical interpretation (likely to "fit" a theory).  So I brought this forth on OB hoping there would be at least one person who uses literal interpretation rather than allegorization.  I wasn't really wanting to argue the verse (other than if I had to, if someone attempted to allegorize the meaning of "wind", etc), I was more interested in what others (if any  have) already studied on this, and the conclusion they arrived at... using literal interpretation. I did get one brief answer, but not enough description to give me a clue about where they were headed with a conclusion.... so anyways... I do hope someone will come forth with some thoughts/conclusions on Jeremiah 49:36 (using literal interpretation).

Sorry to "derail" your thread... I simply wanted to commend your study on "signify" as well as commend the literal interpretation as well (as usual my brain went off down the trail to the next thought and I didn't stop typing, lol)

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A similar word is Sign.  When we sign our cheques we are not writing our name, but putting our mark, which may be our name or may not. I used toi work for a firm that, for some cheques, used a cheque signing machine which stamped the cheques.  I had an aunt who was illiterate and had to sign document by making her mark or sign, In doing family research I found documents such as marriage certificates where someone made their mark or sign.  Usually an X but not necessarily, could be any sign they choose to make.  Closely related to this are seals where a signet it used.  In history Kings and others used signets, so Bro Scott I think you are only partially correct.

 

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Pastor Markle,

Thank you for the excellent exposition on the word, verb,  "signify" and "signified" as related to Revelation 1:1 and its related passages in the New Testament. It is also refreshing to hear the full meaning of the Greek word employed and used in the New Testament instead of just a partial and miss-leading meaning.

May God richly bless you as you stand for the truth not only in the English language but in the usage of the Greek and English definitions.

Alan

Edited by Alan
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2 hours ago, Invicta said:

A similar word is Sign.  When we sign our cheques we are not writing our name, but putting our mark, which may be our name or may not. I used toi work for a firm that, for some cheques, used a cheque signing machine which stamped the cheques.  I had an aunt who was illiterate and had to sign document by making her mark or sign, In doing family research I found documents such as marriage certificates where someone made their mark or sign.  Usually an X but not necessarily, could be any sign they choose to make.  Closely related to this are seals where a signet it used.  In history Kings and others used signets, so Bro Scott I think you are only partially correct.

Brother David,

It is correct that the English verb "signify" is in the same word family with other English words as "sign," "significance," "signification," "signature," "signet," "signal," etc.  However, in the word study above, I chose to remain within the boundaries of the verb itself, and that of the particular Greek verb itself that is found in Revelation 1:1, and to remain within the boundaries of the Scriptural usage specifically, rather than also including secular usage generally.  I did this because I was seeking to understand the Holy Spirit inspired usage of the verb in Revelation 1:1 through a consideration of the Holy Spirit inspired usage of the verb in other Scriptures (that is -- comparing specific Scriptural usage to specific Scriptural usage).

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Actually, the Scriptures themselves prove otherwise. In Rev 1 we are told that Jesus is walking amongst the lamp stands and stars are in His hands. Then we are told that they signify that the lamp stands are the churches and that stars are angels of the church's.

also we are told later that the incense is the prayers of the saints. If you go, literally, looking for seven headed dragons and harlots drinking blood, you will be looking for absurdity.

Edited by Christ Follower

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On 1/21/2016 at 1:47 AM, Pastor Scott Markle said:

Brother David,

It is correct that the English verb "signify" is in the same word family with other English words as "sign," "significance," "signification," "signature," "signet," "signal," etc.  However, in the word study above, I chose to remain within the boundaries of the verb itself, and that of the particular Greek verb itself that is found in Revelation 1:1, and to remain within the boundaries of the Scriptural usage specifically, rather than also including secular usage generally.  I did this because I was seeking to understand the Holy Spirit inspired usage of the verb in Revelation 1:1 through a consideration of the Holy Spirit inspired usage of the verb in other Scriptures (that is -- comparing specific Scriptural usage to specific Scriptural usage).

One example of a sign is Jonah.

Mt 12:39  But he answered and said unto them, An evil and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign; and there shall no sign be given to it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas: Mt 12:40  For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale’s belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. Also Luke 11:29-30  

Jonah was a sign, that is a symbol of the Lord Jesus.  His description of the deep goes far deeper (sorry) than just being in the fish, and says he was in the belly of hell. 

2  And said, I cried by reason of mine affliction unto the LORD, and he heard me; out of the belly of hell cried I, and thou heardest my voice. 3  For thou hadst cast me into the deep, in the midst of the seas; and the floods compassed me about: all thy billows and thy waves passed over me.
4  Then I said, I am cast out of thy sight; yet I will look again toward thy holy temple. 5  The waters compassed me about, even to the soul: the depth closed me round about, the weeds were wrapped about my head. 6  I went down to the bottoms of the mountains; the earth with her bars was about me for ever: yet hast thou brought up my life from corruption, O LORD my God. 7  When my soul fainted within me I remembered the LORD: and my prayer came in unto thee, into thine holy temple. 8  They that observe lying vanities forsake their own mercy. 9  But I will sacrifice unto thee with the voice of thanksgiving; I will pay that that I have vowed. Salvation is of the LORD.

 

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21 hours ago, Christ Follower said:

Actually, the Scriptures themselves prove otherwise. In Rev 1 we are told that Jesus is walking amongst the lamp stands and stars are in His hands. Then we are told that they signify that the lamp stands are the churches and that stars are angels of the church's.

also we are told later that the incense is the prayers of the saints. If you go, literally, looking for seven headed dragons and harlots drinking blood, you will be looking for absurdity.

Except that my opening study did NOT indicate that symbolism could not be found in the book of the Revelation.  Rather, my opening word study specifically indicated that the entire book of the Revelation was NOT to be viewed as "one giant symbolism" simply because the word "signified" is used in Revelation 1:1.  Indeed, my opening word study demonstrated that the word "signified" itself, as used throughout the New Testament, does NOT mean "a communication of information through symbolism."  Do we found symbolisms within the book of the Revelation?  Indeed, we do; just as we also find them within the Pentateuch, within the Old Testament historical books, within the Old Testament poetry and wisdom books, within the Old Testament prophets, within the New Testament gospels, and within the New Testament epistles.  So then, how do we "rightly divide" these things, including those in relation to the book of the Revelation?  We "rightly divide" from a perspective of literalism, wherein we recognize any symbolism that is contextually apparent as a symbolism.

Indeed, the lamp stands are figurative for the respective churches that they represent.  Are the churches themselves also to be taken as figures for something else, or are those churches to be viewed as literal churches in their respectively literal places at the literal time period wherein John was inspired to write?

Actually, according to a literal take of Revelation 8:3-4, "the prayers of all saints" are NOT themselves the incense, but are mixed with the incense that is poured upon "the golden altar" of incense in heaven.  So then, IS there a literal "golden altar" of incense in heaven?  IS there literal incense that is poured out upon this "golden altar" of incense in heaven?  ARE "the prayers of all saints" literally mixed (by the power of God) with this literal incense in heaven?  As for myself, my own answer is a resounding - YES!

If you do NOT approach the book of the Revelation from a more literalistic perspective (with a recognition of the symbolism where it is contextually apparent), you will be wandering astray from sound doctrine.

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8 minutes ago, Christ Follower said:

In Thayers Greek Lexicon it has "signified" as sēmainō as "to give a sign, to signify, to indicate". Context would be crucial then in interpretation. 

I am a partial preterits, historical pre-mil. Not dispensational, so I know my veiw will differ greatly from others in here

Could you give at least a brief explanation of what a " partial preterits, historical pre-mil" view is?

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15 hours ago, Christ Follower said:

To an extant I agree. But much of Revelation is symbolic. I think the harlot is symbolic of Isreal, the dragon is Rome.

The bride is the true church.  The harlot is the false church, the church of Rome.

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3 hours ago, Invicta said:

The bride is the true church.  The harlot is the false church, the church of Rome.

 

3 hours ago, Invicta said:

The bride is the true church.  The harlot is the false church, the church of Rome.

Actually, the harlot is Isreal under the old covenant,Who does God constantly referred to as a Harley in the Old Testament? Braden dying on m Who does God constantly referred to as a harlot in the Old Testament? 

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3 hours ago, John81 said:

Could you give at least a brief explanation of what a " partial preterits, historical pre-mil" view is?

 In a nutshell. A partial preterits, is a beleive that Matt 24  and Rev 1 is and indication that the tribulation was for the first century church, hence no rapture, Jesus comes to set up his millennial kingdom

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28 minutes ago, Christ Follower said:

 In a nutshell. A partial preterits, is a beleive that Matt 24  and Rev 1 is and indication that the tribulation was for the first century church, hence no rapture, Jesus comes to set up his millennial kingdom

I have read someone who believed that all tribulation is on the church. Not so.

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34 minutes ago, Christ Follower said:

 In a nutshell. A partial preterits, is a beleive that Matt 24  and Rev 1 is and indication that the tribulation was for the first century church, hence no rapture, Jesus comes to set up his millennial kingdom

In this view, what is the timing of the return of Jesus to set up his millennial kingdom? Is that a literal thousand year kingdom on earth? What follows the millennial kingdom?

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37 minutes ago, Christ Follower said:

 

Actually, the harlot is Isreal under the old covenant,Who does God constantly referred to as a Harley in the Old Testament? Braden dying on m Who does God constantly referred to as a harlot in the Old Testament? 

The book of Revelation is a book written to the church and refers to the church.  The old covenant doesn't come into the book of Revelation.

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47 minutes ago, John81 said:

In this view, what is the timing of the return of Jesus to set up his millennial kingdom? Is that a literal thousand year kingdom on earth? What follows the millennial kingdom?

We don't know the timing of his return. And I don't think the millennial reign will be a long period of time,  after the millennial kingdom is final judgement.

Edited by Christ Follower

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1 hour ago, Invicta said:

The book of Revelation is a book written to the church and refers to the church.  The old covenant doesn't come into the book of Revelation.

Right, it's written to the believers who are under persecution. And in Jeremiah 31 is when God brings about the final covenant, Which will extend through the church age. Many of God's moral laws are still active today.

Edited by Christ Follower

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1 hour ago, Invicta said:

The book of Revelation is a book written to the church and refers to the church.  The old covenant doesn't come into the book of Revelation.

So, Brother David, is either the old covenant OR the new covenant directly referenced anywhere throughout the book of the Revelation?

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On Wednesday, January 20, 2016 at 9:01 PM, Ronda said:

Pastor Markle, excellent  study on the word "signify" as well as the Greek "semaino" used in  Rev. 1:1 (as well as in all the other verses you brought forth)! Showing again that scripture compared with other scripture actually interprets itself!  The importance of literal interpretation  is so very important as well!!! If a person is willing to allegorize (symbolize or spiritualize) scripture, I believe it shows a lack of reverence for God's word. I believe He meant what He said and said what He meant.

There are cases of symbolism in the Bible, however, in most of those cases the interpretation is also given. For instance: I once had an argument with another (supposedly) Christian on the meaning of the "seven heads" given in Rev. 17:3... the actual interpretation is GIVEN to us in verse 9 "..The seven heads are seven mountains, on which the woman sitteth". Yet this other person demanded (to my exasperation) that that is NOT what they seven heads were! I should have ended the discussion then, but instead furthered to discuss it by stating that the meaning for "mountains" were actual, physical mounds of earth, and were certainly not symbolic.... the "heads" were symbolic, the interpretation (mountains) was NOT symbolic. But this person couldn't seem to see the difference at all! Which proved to me (for the hundreth time likely) that in matter of the Bible, those who do not use a literal interpretation cannot grasp even the simplest of differences in interpretation... to them it's ALL symbolic!!! I believe those who allegorize scripture will never be able to comprehend even the most basic parts of eschatology. I've heard some say that allegorizing is a "lazy" approach, I think it's worse than "lazy", I think it show the lack of respect for God's word.

I recently started a thread here entitled "Jeremiah 49"... the reason being, I have had many discussions elsewhere (not on OB) regarding this section I referenced (Jer. 49:35-39, and even more specifically verse 36).  There are so few (who claim to study eschatology) who use a literal interpretation. I have many fellow friends who I believe DO use literal interpretation, yet they have no interest (or little interest) in eschatology and/or Bible prophecy. And the other (professing) Christian friends who DO claim to have interest in eschatology and/or Bible prophecy, but do not use literal interpretation.  Some admit they allegorize... sadly (and possibly worse) others SAY they interpret literally, but actually DO interpret allegorically, mixing and matching (a horrible mistake) of both literal and allegorical interpretation (likely to "fit" a theory).  So I brought this forth on OB hoping there would be at least one person who uses literal interpretation rather than allegorization.  I wasn't really wanting to argue the verse (other than if I had to, if someone attempted to allegorize the meaning of "wind", etc), I was more interested in what others (if any  have) already studied on this, and the conclusion they arrived at... using literal interpretation. I did get one brief answer, but not enough description to give me a clue about where they were headed with a conclusion.... so anyways... I do hope someone will come forth with some thoughts/conclusions on Jeremiah 49:36 (using literal interpretation).

Sorry to "derail" your thread... I simply wanted to commend your study on "signify" as well as commend the literal interpretation as well (as usual my brain went off down the trail to the next thought and I didn't stop typing, lol)

Hi Ronda, this is not my favorite topic, but on the symbolism, I think there is cases of double symbols, or symbols being explained in symbol, I can think of one case off hand from Revelation,

Revelation 21:2  And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband....Revelation 21:9  And there came unto me one of the seven angels which had the seven vials full of the seven last plagues, and talked with me, saying, Come hither, I will shew thee the bride, the Lamb's wife.

So we have the City and the Bride, both symbols of the same thing which presumably must be the Church, or am I wrong? I think the gulf between the heavens and earth are so vast that symbols are needed to convey some glimpse of the heavens and the spiritual realm to us.

Edited by Old-Pilgrim
spelling

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Hi Ronda, this is not my favorite topic, but on the symbolism, I think there is cases of double symbols, or symbols being explained in symbol, I can think of one case off hand from Revelation,

Revelation 21:2  And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband....Revelation 21:9  And there came unto me one of the seven angels which had the seven vials full of the seven last plagues, and talked with me, saying, Come hither, I will shew thee the bride, the Lamb's wife.

So we have the City and the Bride, both symbols of the same thing which presumably must be the Church, or am I wrong? I think the gulf between the heavens and earth are so vast that symbols are needed to convey some glimpse of the heavens and the spiritual realm to us.

There is also the harlot, mystery Babylon, which is explained as being Rome.  The direct opposite to the bride and the new Jerusalem.

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There is also the harlot, mystery Babylon, which is explained as being Rome.  The direct opposite to the bride and the new Jerusalem.

Well It does sound like Rome, and I know it has been taken as Rome by friend and foe in one shape or another, but politics aside, both 'heads' and a 'beast' sound like living things and one would wonder why a hill of soil or rock would be represented as a living creature, and I wonder if there might be a bit more to the beast than simply a literal mass of land, if Rome was the beast, then it was one of its heads which was wounded, but there was only one Pope over Rome, perhaps the heads are seven power structures of which Rome was one. We also have in Revelation the Mystery Babylon, and in History we Have the Mystery Religion, So the seven mountains of Rome might represent seven different occult entities all similar in nature and intent, but each with some degree on self governance. Such as Kabalism, Gnosticism, Illuminate in more modern times, But there might be seven spirits leading seven heads in an effort to supplant the seven spirits of God.Re 3:1

Edited by Old-Pilgrim

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Well It does sound like Rome, and I know it has been taken as Rome by friend and foe in one shape or another, but politics aside, both 'heads' and a 'beast' sound like living things and one would wonder why a hill of soil or rock would be represented as a living creature, and I wonder if there might be a bit more to the beast than simply a literal mass of land, if Rome was the beast, then it was one of its heads which was wounded, but there was only one Pope over Rome, perhaps the heads are seven power structures of which Rome was one. We also have in Revelation the Mystery Babylon, and in History we Have the Mystery Religion, So the seven mountains of Rome might represent seven different occult entities all similar in nature and intent, but each with some degree on self governance. Such as Kabalism, Gnosticism, Illuminate in more modern times, But there might be seven spirits leading seven heads in an effort to supplant the seven spirits of God.Re 3:1

It might, but it doesn't agree with how the angel explains it.

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