Chapter 21: Revelation

New Testament Video Guide, (2001), 20–21


Purpose

To help students understand the structure, symbols, and main theme of the book of Revelation.

Before the Video

Scripture Insight

Explain that Nephi was shown a vision of the end of the world but was forbidden to write the things he saw. Have students read 1 Nephi 14:18–28 and tell why Nephi was forbidden to write those things. Who was commanded to write the events concerning the end of the world? Tell students that some of the things Nephi was forbidden to write are contained in the book of Revelation.

Using the Video

Helps for Understanding the Book of Revelation 8:36

Show Segment 1

Segment 1 (3:11) portrays archaeologists discovering an ancient room that has images from the book of Revelation depicted on the walls. This segment prepares the students to learn about the structure of the book of Revelation.

Scripture Activity

Segment 1 ends with the following three questions about the structure of the book of Revelation. You may want to write the questions and references on the board.

  • Who is the only person able to open the seals? (see Revelation 5:1–8).

  • What does the book contain? (see D&C 77:6).

  • What do each of the seals represent? (see D&C 77:7).

You may want to have students search Revelation 6–8 and mark in their scriptures where each of the seals was opened. Tell students that most of John’s vision is about the events of the seventh seal. Sometimes, however, other events are depicted in the chapters about the seventh seal, such as the war in heaven. Also tell your students that not all of the events in Revelation are given in chronological order.

Show Segment 2

Segment 2 (2:00) reviews some information about the structure of the book of Revelation and adds information about symbols.

Scripture Activity

Tell students that there are several sources of help for interpreting the symbols in the book of Revelation. Show your students how to use some of the helps listed in the chart below.

Some people struggle because they are unable to interpret every symbol in the book of Revelation. The Prophet Joseph Smith said: “I make this broad declaration, that whenever God gives a vision of an image, or beast, or figure of any kind, He always holds Himself responsible to give a revelation or interpretation of the meaning thereof, otherwise we are not responsible or accountable for our belief in it. Don’t be afraid of being damned for not knowing the meaning of a vision or figure, if God has not given a revelation or interpretation of the subject” (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, sel. Joseph Fielding Smith [1976], 291).

Show Segment 3

Segment 3 (3:25) identifies the main theme in the book of Revelation.

Discussion

Ask students what they think is the main theme of the book of Revelation. (God will triumph over the devil; see also Bible Dictionary, “Revelation of John,” 762–63.)

Scripture Activity

Ask your students for examples, from history or the world today, in which evil seems to win over good. Have them scan the chapter headings of the book of Revelation for examples of the conflict between good and evil and discuss what they learn about this conflict. Encourage students to remember the overriding theme—God will triumph over the devil—as they study the book of Revelation.

After the Video

Discussion

Discuss what it means to know that God will triumph over Satan? Ask students what kinds of promises they can look forward to if they are righteous. (see Revelation 21:3–6). Discuss things we must do to make sure we are on the Lord’s side.

Sources of Help

Examples

The book of Revelation

The interpretation of the dragon in Revelation 12:3 is found in Revelation 12:9.

Modern revelation

The interpretation of the sea of glass in Revelation 4:6 is found in D&C 77:1.

Bible study aids: footnotes, cross-references, Topical Guide, Joseph Smith Translation, and Bible Dictionary

The interpretation of the woman in Revelation 12:1–2 is found in a JST entry in the appendix of the LDS edition of the Bible (she is identified as the Church of God).