A few days ago I stopped at a mall in search of Brookstone. I always liked the tech gadgets you could find there, but it had apparently closed down since the last time I'd visited. So instead I looked in a few of the stores for some jeans. ... You can easily drop $100 at places like Abercrombie & Fitch, Express, and the Gap. I couldn't. At least not so easily. But I learned at the Buckle, though, that they would alter any jeans I'd purchased from them. Thus, I will have reached my quest for a 31-inch inseam.
Probably the most difficult thing about understanding prophecy (and thus reading the book of Revelation) is confusion about time. What is past tense, present, future? God exists outside of time, something that’s difficult for us to grasp, because we are enslaved to the clock. Therefore, visions into the spirit realm are fuzzy and difficult to nail down specific time spans. It’s like dreaming while you sleep. How long does a dream usually last?
In John’s first vision, he sees a woman that symbolizes Israel and maybe even Mary, the mother of Jesus, who (like any other woman) cries out in the agony of giving birth. There are typically two takes on Mary: we deify her or we ignore her