Have you ever been hiking through a thick forest? The trees are so thick you can barely see the sky, let alone the top of
the mountain you are trying to climb. But when you follow the path and get to the top of the mountain, suddenly you can see everything. There’s the trail where you came up through the forest, and on the other side, there’s the trail leading to a beautiful lake where you want to make camp. The book of Revelation is kind of like that. If you just start reading through the book, soon it seems the details are so thick, you can’t even see where you are going.
Let’s step back and take a look at Revelation Mountain. Pretend
you’re going to climb over this mountain. As you climb, you will see that God is working to save you and warn you about what is happening in the world. When you get to the top you discover a battle raging between a Lamb and a Dragon. It might be unnerving to find yourself in the middle of a battle, but at least from this view you can see where things started and where they will end up. But don’t stop there. Keep climbing down the other side of the mountain. After God gives the world his final warning, he finally takes care of evil and saves all who have decided to follow Him.
Hopefully when we start to look at the details in the forests of the book of Revelation they won’t seem so scary, because now you know this mountain can be crossed.
For any of you scholars in training, this style of writing is called a chiasm (pronounced ky’az-um). It is a repetition of similar ideas in reverse order. For example like a pattern, A – B – C – D – D – C – B – A. Often the main topic or strongest focus is in the middle section.
Above you can see, the focus of the book of Revelation is on the conflict between Christ and Satan. Everything else in the book relates to this battle.