Q. Since I’ve found your website, not a day goes by that I have failed to read the new questions each day. My question is about Revelation 4 verse 1. What is the “after this” that both John and the voice are referring to? Could it mean the “after this” is the church age is over and He is showing us the rest of the story? I know it could mean after the rapture, but it seems it could be more descriptive.
A. In Rev. 1:19 John was told to “write the things you have seen, the things that are and the things that will be “after this”. The Greek phrase is meta tauta, which literally means after these things. Some scholars see this verse dividing the book of Revelation into 3 parts. The things John had seen were described in chapter 1 consisting of the Lord’s visit to him on the Isle of Patmos.
The “things that are” comprise chapters 2-3, the seven churches all of which were actual functioning congregations during John’s lifetime, and taken in order chronicle Church history.
The things that will be “after this” are contained in the prophetic portion of the book, chapters 4-22. Opening what we know as Rev. 4 with the phrase “meta tauta” is a reminder that John was beginning the prophetic portion of the book, after the Church age. Some see the Rapture in Rev. 4 with John’s call to God’s throne, and it’s clear that the group singing in Rev. 5:9-10 is the redeemed Church. No other group is purchased by the blood of the Lamb for God, taken from every nation and people group, to become Kings and Priests who will reign on Earth.