The apostle John was one of Jesus’ closest disciples. He was present throughout Jesus’ ministry on earth and authored the books of First, Second and Third John, as well as the Book of Revelation. But, how did he receive The Revelation? He wasn’t sitting in a His comfortable, climate controlled room typing into His laptop. He was exiled on the Greek Island of Patmos under Roman persecution for the Testimony of Yeshua, Jesus Christ.
I, John, both your brother and companion in the tribulation and kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was on the island that is called Patmos for the word of God and for the testimony of Jesus Christ.
Yes, John was there when Jesus performed his miracles, when He walked on water, when He healed and brought back people from the dead. He was there when Jesus instituted the Lord’s Supper…when He was betrayed. Yes, John responded to Jesus call to…
Matthew 28:19 (NKJV)
19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,
…and answering that call is why he was exiled on the Island of Patmos. He was being persecuted for the Gospel. But, God allowed it…
But why? Why did God allow His servant to be exiled? Especially if he was busy about his Father’s business? Could he not have given John The Revelation at his house? Could he not have given it to him in a dream as he slept cozy in his bed?
Could it be that God had to move every other distraction out of the way for an experience and Revelation of this magnitude and importance. Did John need to be isolated, ‘sanctified’ or ‘set apart’ to this extreme so God could reveal His plan for our future?
Could it be that God made sure that not only John’s mind was clear, but that he left without any doubt…THAT WAS GOD!
I think so!
In fact, I think we have all of us in the Body of Christ have had our own Island of Patmos, even if we didn’t recognize it.
We can get so busy with our day-to-day lives that we aren’t taking the time to really hear from God. We can even be so busy working for the Kingdom, that we aren’t slowing down enough and emptying ourselves enough to receive…fresh revelation that God has for us and those in our circles of influence.
You may have had an accident or sickness that slowed you down.
You may have lost a job or relationship that was distracting you from your true purpose.
You too may have even been jailed or imprisoned for something you did not do. Why would God allow that?
I wrote this article after being inspired by a friend who told me he had foot surgery that caused him to be home from his job for six weeks. He said during that time he grew so much closer to God, and he was given fresh revelation from scriptures he has heard and read his entire life.
What’s unfortunate is that sometimes when God ‘exiles’ or us from our lives so that we can hear from Him, we don’t recognize it. We may see it as misfortune. We may use that time selfishly for ourselves, or may even use that time for the enemy.
Stop and think back on your life.
Has God tried to isolate you for His purpose? Did you make the most of that opportunity, or squander it?
Make sure you are making yourself available to God to speak to you. Disconnect yourself from the world, job, family…distractions and make yourself available to God.
I know that personally, I can take better advantage of the opportunity of fasting to empty myself and afflict my flesh so that God doesn’t have to do it for me.
Pray for wisdom and discernment to recognize if God has you on your own Island of Patmos’ to speak to you, and give you fresh revelation.
If you’re in that season right now…use it.