“The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him to show to His bond-servants, the things which must soon take place; and He sent and communicated it by His angel to His bond-servant John,” (Revelation 1:1 NASB)

John in writing this last book of the bible emphasized the truth of imminence of events in a variety of ways through language. He carefully varies the manner of his expressions as if to avoid any potential confusion on the matter. The Greek word translated “soon” in Revelation 1:1 is from the Greek word “tachos”.

According to Arndt and Gingich Lexicon, “tachos” is used in the LXX and certain non-canonical writings to mean speed, quickness, swiftness, haste. John uses the same word in Revelation 2:16; 3:11; 22:6,7,12,20.

” Therefore repent; or else I am coming to you quickly, and I will make war against them with the sword of My mouth.” – Rev 2:16

“I am coming quickly; hold fast what you have, so that no one will take your crown. ” – Rev. 3:11

And he said to me, “These words are faithful and true”; and the Lord, the God of the spirits of the prophets, sent His angel to show to His bond-servants the things which must soon take place.” 
“And behold, I am coming quickly. Blessed is he who [e]heeds the words of the prophecy of this book.”
“Behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to render to every man [g]according to what he has done.”
“He who testifies to these things says, “Yes, I am coming quickly.” Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.”
– Rev. 22:6,7,12,20

John also uses the Greek word eggus:

Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of the prophecy, and heed the things which are written in it; for the time is near. (Revelation 1:3 NASB)

Which is translated here as “near” it is also used in Revelation 22:10. This term speaks of temporal nearness and John uses it to bracket the book. The third Greek word is mello; it is translated “about to”’ in Revelation 1:19 & 3:10.

“Therefore write the things which you have seen, and the things which are, and the things which will take place after these things. (Revelation 1:19 NASB)

The phrase, “the things which will take place after these things” is literally “the things which are about to occur” and in 3:10, “which shall come upon all the world” is literally “is about to come upon the whole world [oikoumene].”

If we apply the principle of audience relevance, what would the original readers have thought when they read this? John strategically places these words at the introduction and conclusion of the book. John was telling the seven churches to expect these things at any moment.

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