In Revelations 1:12-16 John receives his first vision. In reading this vision, we need to remember that John sees everything he describes at once. In
reading the many things he describes; we must keep the total picture in mind. The details are not so much meant to elaborate part by part. What matters is the overall picture.
John turns around upon hearing the great voice. He is impressed and wants to see who the speaker is. And then he sees two things. First, he sees seven golden lampstands. They first attract his attention. It is explained in verse 20 that these represent the seven churches. But those congregations are depicted as lampstands, not as the candle or source of light itself! The congregations are light bearers. The light in them is the light of God's Spirit, God Himself, His Word. Therefore, the call to remain "In Christ" is always there. Without Him, there is no light, but darkness in our lives!
But then John sees a person amid those seven lampstands. The lampstands apparently stand in a circle around this person. The next four verses describe this person. It is Jesus Christ in His glory and power, full of grace and truth. Let us read the description line for line and try to get for eyes what John saw. Jesus is "like the son of man.” John knew the Lord Jesus as the suffering servant. But here He sees the glorified Jesus, full of God's glory and majesty. "Clothed with a garment (long robe) to the feet.” A garment like that of a priest or a king. But so is He! “girt about the paps with a golden girdle.” A sign of His majesty. “His head and his hairs were white like wool, as white as snow.” In that society, the elders had great respect. And gray hair is a sign of wisdom. But also white as a sign of spotless purity and holiness. “His eyes were as a flame of fire.” His eyes are all seeing, penetrating, and full of energy. "And his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace.” Feet of copper, He has a steady and stable walk. But those feet also glow, permeated with fire. He is utterly holy and very powerful. “His voice is as the sound of many waters.” A mighty full and bearing sound. His voice you cannot avoid. "Seven stars in His right hand.” Those seven stars are representatives of the seven churches. It is Jesus who ultimately leads them. Fixed in His right hand, the hand with which He acts full of authority and power. "Out of His mouth went a two-edged sword.” His weapon is His word. His words are full of love and full of justice. They speak of grace and truth. His words are lovingly compassionate and a condemning judgment. He speaks, and it happens. "His countenance was as the sun shineth in its strength.” Moses radiated God's Glory as he came down the mountain, but Christ is the Light itself.
What a comfort to know that the Suffering Servant is now the Glorified King in heaven. He who gave his life vicariously is now glorified. With him, nothing is impossible!