Back then, all literary work had to be copied by hand; there was
no printing with movable type (that did not come until 1450 A.D.).
Also, the scrolls that were used limited the size of a manuscript.
Though there are records of Caesar cutting scrolls into small
sheets and stacking them like a modern book, it wasn’t until
the second century that page-books were developed. This development
allowed the many scroll manuscripts to be converted to sheets
and bound into large books (still handwritten). Even then, many
early churches did not include the Revelation in their sacred
literature. The earliest Christian Bible included the Old Testament,
the four Gospels, the Acts, thirteen letters of Paul, 1 Peter,
and 1 John. Seven books that ultimately became part of the present
day New Testament were generally unrecognized in the first and
second century: Hebrews, James, 2 Peter, 2 and 3 John, Jude, and
the Revelation. Interestingly, the Letter of Barnabas, or the
Shepherd of Hermas, was accepted as Scripture, only to be rejected
later. It wasn’t until the fourth century that we saw the
first authoritative pronouncements listing the acceptable canon
we have today. The criterion for being included in this list was
twofold: 1) was the work written by an apostle, and 2) was it
in general harmony with the Old Testament and the rest of the
New Testament. The introduction to the Revelation identifying
the work as being that of the apostle John’s and its general
harmony with the Books of Ezekiel and Daniel won it inclusion
into the final authorized canon of the New Testament. The first
time the twenty-seven books of the New Testament we have today
were listed, including the Revelation, was in St. Athanasius’
Festal Letter of A.D. 367.
There are apocalyptic passages in the Gospels: Matthew 24-25,
Mark 13, and Luke 21, but the Book of the Revelation is the
prophecy book of the New Testament, as the Book of Daniel is
for the Old Testament. The original name of this most mysterious
book of the Bible is Apokalupsis, which in Greek literally means
"to take the cover off" or "uncover." The
Apocalypse or Revelation is the uncovering of a spiritual message
from God. It may be called an uncovering, but few readily understand
The Revelation is addressed to the seven churches in Asia Minor,
mentioned in its chapters 2 and 3. It was written at a time
of great persecution for those struggling to hold to the tenets
and practices of this fledgling faith, particularly during the
reigns of Nero in A.D. 37 to 68 and Domitian in A.D. 81 to 96.
Domitian actually declared himself dominus et deus, lord and
god, which the faithful simply could not affirm, and so began
the persecutions that resulted in the often repeated saying,
"Rome became drunk on the blood of the saints." This
was a departure from Rome’s earlier position, which was
protective of the fledgling faith, allowing it to develop among
the other Jewish sects, as noted in the Acts of the Apostles
and Paul’s Epistle to the Romans.
Scholars consider the author of the Revelation to be the apostle
John (Rev. 1:1,9; 21:2, 22:8), who also wrote the Gospel and
the three Epistles of John. He had been arrested along with
the apostle Peter. They were tried and convicted of activities
subversive to the authority of the land. Peter was sentenced
to death by crucifixion. John was sentenced to banishment to
the island of Patmos in the Aegean Sea. According to Edgar Cayce,
before they were parted, Peter promised John that he would endeavor
to come to him after his death and communicate with him from
heaven. In Cayce’s interpretation this promise is an important
one, for it is Peter’s angelic spirit who later appears
to John twice during his Revelation in the form of an angel
(Rev. 19:10 and 22:9). In these two appearances the angel clearly
identifies himself as one of John’s brethren, "I
am a fellow-servant with thee and with thy brethren," but
his appearance is so wonderful that John can only see an angel.
Traditionally, there are four approaches to interpreting Revelation:
1) preterist, 2) historicist, 3) symbolic, and 4) futuristic.
As the term implies, the preterist approach places the events
and visions in the past, particularly to the Roman Empire of
the first century A.D. The proponents of this view believe that
the primary purpose of the Book is to encourage the faithful
that God will intervene in their immediate struggles. The preterist
view explains the symbolic nature of the text as a conscious
attempt by the disciple John to hide the real meaning of the
text from the authorities and the general public, keeping its
message available only to the faithful. The faithful would know
that the great whore of Babylon seated upon the seven hills
was none other than Rome. The lamb that was slain was Jesus
Christ. The bride adorned for her husband was Jerusalem, which
God would soon rescue from the beast’s (Rome’s)
The historicist interpretation approaches the Revelation as
a panoramic view of history from the first century A.D. to the
Second Coming of Christ. This is the view of most of the Protestant
Reformers. They believe that various symbols can be associated
with various nations and events throughout time to the present
and the near future, when Christ will return in glory and power.
The symbolic view maintains that the Revelation portrays the
conflict between good and evil throughout the entire span of
human history. The Book attempts to encourage the faithful to
keep up the fight because, despite the magnitude of the challenge
and depth of suffering involved in this fight, good overcomes
evil in the end and reigns forever. This view does not attempt
to associate the symbols with nations or events in history,
but simply with the various forces that make up the good influence
and the evil influence in humanity’s journey.
The futuristic view holds that from Chapter 4 on, Revelation
deals with events at the "End Times," as spoken of
in the Book of Daniel by the angel Gabriel. According to this
view, Chapter 1 deals with the past, chapters 2 and 3 tell of
things that were present and shortly followed at the time of
its writing, and chapters 4 through 22 tell of things that will
follow the Age of the Church during the Second Coming of Christ.
Edgar Cayce approaches the Revelation most closely to the symbolic
view, but even here he takes it far beyond the normal symbolic
interpretation. In fact, Cayce teaches that the whole Bible
is a story that is both historic and symbolic on two levels:
one very personal to each soul and the other for all souls as
a group. According to Cayce, the Bible tells of our souls’
journey (individually and as a group) from our creation in the
image of God for the purpose of being eternal companions to
God, through the fall from grace and the loss of the Garden,
up through the struggles to regain that glory that was ours
"before the world was." The Revelation, according
to Cayce, is a very special part of the great biblical story
and should be studied as a kind of roadmap for the final spiritualization
of our bodies and minds. The symbols and scenes in this mysterious
book represent experiences and stages through which we pass
in our struggle to awaken again spiritually and regain our close
connection with God and the Garden we once shared. Cayce says
that some symbols and places in the Revelation actually represent
glands within our bodies and thought patterns within our minds.
He explains that "the visions, the experiences, the names,
the churches, the places, the dragons, the cities, all are but
emblems of those forces that may war within the individual in
its journey through the material, or from the entering into
the material manifestation [i.e., physical body and world] to
the entering into the glory, or the awakening in the spirit...."
This is quite a unique approach to the Revelation. Most interpreters
believe that it is a story about the forces in the outside world.
Cayce acknowledges that it does have that content, but its greater
purpose and message is to each individual soul as a map of the
spiritual path we travel within our bodies and minds to reach
the ultimate purpose for our being: oneness and companionship
with God and one another. For Cayce, the outer activities and
commandments are important, but the inner work is the key to
understanding the Revelation. The symbols "represent self;
self’s body-physical, self’s body-mental, self’s
body-spiritual...and they are one in thee -- even as the Father,
the Son, and the Holy Spirit is one in Him."
Why then was it written in such a cryptic manner? According
to Cayce, it was to keep its spiritual secrets for "those
that were, or will be, or may become," through their spiritual
seeking, initiated into an understanding of "the glories
that may be theirs if they will but put into work, into activity,"
the guidance and calling found in the text. As the Spirit comes
to each church and speaks to them, so Cayce wants each of us
to ask ourselves: "What is lacking in self? Are ye cold?
Are ye hot? Have ye been negligent of the knowledge that is
thine? Are ye stiff-necked? Are ye adulterous in thought, in
act, in the very glories that are thine?"
In every line of the Revelation, every activity, every symbol,
we find good and evil rising in a struggle. This struggle, according
to Cayce, is within us and is because we were created to be
heirs, joint heirs with Christ, as sons and daughters of God,
to that everlasting glory that my be ours with Him in God. But
the material, physical forces, and self-satisfying interests
take strong hold of us, and we forget our spiritual destiny.
Yet, Cayce does not see the physical as evil or a stumbling-block
to spiritualization; rather as a tool, a steppingstone to aid
in our spiritual struggle if we use it properly, as the Revelation
Here are some examples of Cayce’s interpretation of symbols,
scenes, and characters found in the Revelation:
The Seven Churches: These represent the seven spiritual centers
within the body. In classical Hinduism and Buddhism these centers
are called "chakras," which means "wheels,"
spinning wheels of energy located in specific areas of the human
body. Cayce correlates these centers to the endocrine glands,
which secrete the powerful hormone messages directly into the
bloodstream, affecting all parts of the body. Each of these
churches represents a specific spiritual center. The virtue
and the fault of each church symbolizes the virtue and fault
of that spiritual center within us. These powerful centers affect
the soul and mind inhabiting the body. Therefore, the Spirit
moves through each church, calling on it to overcome its weaknesses
and to do what it knows to do, so that the final glory may be
achieved, helping us to prepare for the spiritualization of
the mind and heart described in subsequent chapters of the Revelation.
The Seven Lamps of Fire: These represent the helpful influences
that destroy hindrances to the spiritual awakening. They are
inner messengers, aids, who stand between the forces of good
and evil and become as powers within the nature of man to overcome.
This idea may be an extension of the teaching that angels watch
over us. An example of this can be found in Psalm 91:11 "For
he will give his angels charge over you, to keep you in all
your ways." It may also be the power of our inner conscience,
that helps us along the way. But with Cayce, it may also be
our inner thoughts and chemistry: What thoughts and hormones
are we releasing most often? Those that fire up the carnal or
violent forces of the body or the gentler, calmer, more uplifting
ones, that make the body a temple for the soul?
The Four Beasts: These are the four fundamental physical natures
(desires) of man which must be overcome. They are also the four
destructive influences that "make for the greater desire
for the carnal forces." The Revelation’s description
of each adds to our understanding of these forces and how we
may subdue their negative qualities. These also represent urges
and forces in the four lower, more earthly glands in our bodies.
Cayce equates the four lower glands with earthly forces and
the three upper glands with heavenly forces. More on this in
a later chapter.
The Great Red Dragon: This symbolizes that powerful urge within
ourselves that originally so separated us from the Source of
Life that we would fight with those very influences that would
bring the spiritual awakening. The Great Red Dragon is the serpent
from the Garden in Genesis (Rev. 12:9) who first aided in our
souls’ separation from God’s presence and the Garden
-- symbolic of a serpent-like willfulness and reasoning within
ourselves, when we were heavenly teenagers with the keys to
the car. Now this influence has grown strong and powerful in
the form of a great, red dragon, ready to devour any new, heaven-centered
intentions we bring forth in our hearts and minds.
Mark of the Beast: This strange mark, 666, represents vows
and obligations we have made to the work of the Beast and how
we condemn rather than help any effort to overcome the Beast’s
influence. The Beast is like our ego and egocentric interests.
It represents the work of self alone, without God’s influence.
The mark is erased when the work of our hands and thoughts of
our minds are cooperating with God, rather than simply being
self-driven. The Beast is our lower nature at our most selfish,
self-centered, self-gratifying, self-glorifying point of existence.
New Heaven and New Earth: These represent a new mind and a
new heart. Through out the Old Testament you may have noticed
that the Lord makes occasional reference to giving us new hearts
or "circumcising" our hearts. Here, in the final book
of the Bible, we have received our new hearts. These also represent
a new vibration in the seven spiritual centers. The "wheels"
are spinning with a new purpose, a new life-force; one that
is spiritualizing. Therefore, we have a new body, too. One that
helps the heart and mind maintain higher consciousness.
Water of Life: This is the transformative, rejuvenative influence
of the Spirit of God flowing through our purposes, which have
been made pure in "the blood of the Lamb -- which is in
Jesus, the Christ, to those who seek to know his ways."
Ingesting this water is cleansing, making us new and reborn.
But, once again, it is not actual water that we are talking
about. It is the essence of water from within us, as Jesus meant
when he said, "He that believeth on me, as the scripture
hath said, from within him shall flow rivers of living water,"
John 7:38. Jesus’ reference to the scriptures is to Isaiah
58:11 where we find a similar comment about the inner water:
"And the Lord will guide thee continually, and satisfy
thy soul in dry places, and make strong thy bones; and thou
shalt be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water,
whose waters fail not."
Tree of Life: This represents "the sturdiness of the purpose
of the individual in its sureness in the Christ." The tree’s
leaves represent our activities that are as healings to others
and ourselves in the material life. The fruits of this special
tree are the "fruits of the spirit." Cayce listed
them in many of his discourses as: kindness, patience, joy,
understanding, gentleness, longsuffering, forgiveness, etc.
The tree’s ability to bear fruit each month indicates
the continuousness of the influence of this sturdiness and these
activities that bring forth the spiritual fruits in our lives.
Cayce’s interpretions call each of us to participate
in a great struggle to be born again in the Spirit and spiritualize
our lives, bodies, and minds.
In chapter 1 verse 10 of the Revelation, the disciple John
tells us that he was "in the spirit on the Lord’s
day." Cayce says that he was in deep meditation. In this
deep state he was caught up in the Spirit of God and "turned"
(Rev. 1:12) away from the outer world. He began viewing the
inner, heavenly world, and was told to write what he saw and
heard. Cayce says that what John perceived was for his own personal
spiritual development as well as for other souls who, by their
own development, could sense the true meaning of this story
and its strange imagery, and use it to benefit their own journey.
Again, the journey we are speaking of is the journey from being
a predominantly physical, material being to a predominantly
spiritual, celestial being, sojourning temporarily in the physical
The process John went through to have his revelatory experience,
combined with the content of the experience, reveals a spiritual,
mystical approach to life. The mystical approach is founded
upon a belief that each of us can have an immediate, intuitive
perception of spiritual truths that transcend ordinary intellectual
understanding by experiencing a direct, intimate union of our
soul with God, through the power and grace of the intercession
of Jesus Christ on our behaves, which resulted from his sacrifice
and resurrection. Because of Christ’s sacrifice and current
oneness with the Creator, the veil has been rent in the temple
of consciousness. A way is now opened to experience the Spirit
of God and truth directly, not for one or two selected people,
but any and all who seek. As Revelation 1:5-6 states it: "...Jesus
Christ is the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and
the ruler of the kings of the earth. To him who loves us, and
released us from our sins by his blood; and he has made us to
be a kingdom, to be priests unto his God and Father...."
In Jewish tradition, the high priest entered the Holy of Holies
and experienced direct contact with God. Now, anyone who asks,
will receive; who seeks, will find; who knocks, it will be opened
to them (Matthew 7:7 and Luke 11:9).
When we look at John’s Gospel and Epistles we find the
foundations for his mysticism. The disciple John was the youngest
of the twelve apostles and the last to be chosen. Interestingly,
his gospel is more about what Jesus said than what Jesus did,
very different from the synoptic Gospels of Matthew, Mark, and
Luke, which are similar in content and sequence. Certain concepts,
discussions, and events appear only in John’s Gospel,
such as the "Word" being incarnate in the flesh in
the opening chapter, the Samaritan woman at the well in chapter
four, and Jesus’ extensive comments and prayers at the
Last Supper in chapters 14-17. The Gospel’s literary style
is also unique. It is uncomplicated, easy to read, with no attempt
to tie it all together; each narrative is presented as though
it is an isolated event or statement. It is a book of striking
contrasts: light and darkness; truth and falsehood; good and
evil; life and death; God and Satan. His gospel is saturated
with symbolic representations from ordinary life. For example,
Jesus uses common things such as water, bread, light, wine,
a vine, branches, a shepherd, and so on, to convey spiritual
truths. And though it contains little to no prophecy (surprising,
since the other gospels do and John later writes the Revelation),
it is the most mystical of the four gospels.
For example, in the Gospel of John, chapter 1:1-13, we have
the wonderful description of the incarnation of the Word. And,
if we translate it as closely to the original Greek as possible,
we actually get a better understanding, mostly because we have
too narrowly translated a key word in the text. That word is
"word"! John uses the Greek word "logos,"
which means so much more than the English word. For example,
in chapter 8:43 of the gospel, John recounts Jesus actually
using two different Greek words for "word" to explain
to the authorities why they so often do not understand his teachings;
in so doing he gives a key insight into the importance of the
word "logos": "Why do you not understand my words
[lalian]? It is because you cannot hear my word [logon]."
Logos means the rational principle that governs and develops
the whole universe. If we use this definition in the English
translation, then it reads much more powerfully. John is trying
to convey to us that not only the message or word of God is
incarnate in Jesus, but so is the essence of the whole cosmos,
the power behind all of creation. Also, in the original text
of this chapter there is no masculine pronoun "He"
in several passages, as the English versions suggest. It’s
actually written in the early Greek as "this one,"
not "He." Here is the text with these adjustments:
1 In the beginning was the Logos, and the Logos was with God,
and the Logos was God.
2 This one was in the beginning with God.
3 All things were made through this one; and without this one
was not made anything that has been made.
4 In this one was life; and the life was the light of men.
5 And the light shined in the darkness; and the darkness did
not comprehend it.
6 There came a man, sent from God, whose name was John [the
7 The same came for witness, that he might bear witness of
the light, that all might believe through him.
8 He was not the light, but came that he might bear witness
of the light.
9 There was the true light, even the light which enlightens
every man coming into the world.
10 This one was in the world, and the world was made through
this one, and the world did not know him.
11 This one came unto his own, and they that were his own did
not receive him.
12 But to as many as received him, gave he the right to become
children of God, even to them that believe on his name:
13 who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh,
nor of the will of man, but of God.
In this same gospel we also have the mind-opening discussion
with the Samaritan woman at the well in which we learn of the
"living water" that later appears in the Revelation,
and the nature of God and how best to attune to God, which John
certainly needed to know in order to have his great revelation.
The first of these two teachings begins in chapter 4:7-15, the
second in verses 19-26.
7 There came a woman of Samaria to draw water: Jesus said to
her, "Give me a drink."
8 For his disciples were gone away to the city to buy food.
9 The Samaritan woman therefore said to him, "How is it
that thou, being a Jew, ask drink of me, who am a Samaritan
woman?" (For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans.)
10 Jesus answered and said to her, "If you knew the gift
of God, and who it is that says to you, ‘Give me to drink,’
you would have asked of him, and he would have given you living
11 The woman says to him, "Sir, you have nothing to draw
with, and the well is deep; where then do you have that living
12 Are you greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well,
and drank from it himself, and his sons, and his cattle?"
13 Jesus answered and said to her, "Every one that drinks
of this water shall thirst again;
14 but whosoever drinks of the water that I shall give him
shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall
become in him a well of water springing up unto eternal life."
15 The woman saith unto him, "Sir, give me this water,
that I thirst not, neither come all the way here to draw."
In this scene we learn of another water, a living water, that
once we have received, we will never thirst for water again,
and we will be like a well of our own with water springing up
within us, bringing eternal life.
Then, after telling the woman of events in her life that he
could not physically have known, she then addresses a key issue
about worshiping God that surely helped John to get into the
Spirit for his revelation:
19 The woman says unto him, "Sir, I perceive that thou
art a prophet.
20 Our fathers worshiped in this mountain; and your people
say, that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship."
21 Jesus saith unto her, "Woman, believe me, an hour comes,
when neither in this mountain, nor in Jerusalem, shall you worship
22 You worship that which you do not know; we worship that
which we know, for salvation is from the Jews.
23 But an hour comes, and now is, when the true worshipers
shall worship the Father in spirit and truth: for such people
the Father seeks to be his worshipers.
24 God is a Spirit, and they that worship him must worship
in spirit and truth."
The idea that God is a spirit and seeks us to worship Him in
spirit is fundamental to understanding the Revelation. We cannot
approach these teachings from an intellectual, physical perspective.
They require that we evoke or receive the Spirit of God, and
that this Spirit will left our spirits up to a level of consciousness
from which we can understand the teachings. Jesus touches on
this need in his teachings to Nicodemus, "We speak that
which we know, and bear witness of that which we have seen;
and you do not receive our testimony. If I told you earthly
things and you don’t believe, how shall you believe if
I tell you heavenly things?" Another scripture concerning
the Spirit of God that is relevant to our study of the Revelation
is from Joel, chapter 2 verses 28-31:
28 And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out
my Spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall
prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall
29 and also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those
days will I pour out my Spirit.
30 And I will show wonders in the heavens and in the earth:
blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke.
31 The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into
blood, before the great and terrible day of the Lord comes.
From the need for spirit to worship the Spirit, the woman at
the well turns to the promise of a Messiah that will help us
all. It is always easier if one descends from heaven to help
than if we are asked to lift our minds and hearts up to heaven
to receive help. Therefore, many we waiting for a special one
to descend from heaven, even this Samaritan:
25 The woman saith unto him, "I know that Messiah comes
(he that is called Christ): when that One comes, he will declare
all things to us."
26 Jesus said to her, "I that speak to you am he."
This ordinary woman, not of the chosen people, draws more out
of Jesus than many others who asked questions of him. In her
discussion with Jesus we learn of the water of life, of the
nature of God, the way to worship God, and that the fulfillment
of the prophecy in Daniel is Jesus of Nazareth. In a rare self-testimonial,
Jesus acknowledges to the woman that he is indeed the prophesied
Christ. "Christ" is a transliteration of the Greek
word "christos," which literally means "anointed
one," a stage in the preparation of the high priest to
enter the Holy of Holies to meet God directly. The priest’s
head was to be anointed with oil, usually olive oil: Exodus
29:7, "Then shalt thou take the anointing oil, and pour
it upon his head, and anoint him." This process may also
have been experienced by ordinary people, as written in the
Psalms; one good example is Psalm 23:5, "Thou hast anointed
my head with oil; My cup runneth over." A better translation
of this term might be "a consecrated one," as in Exodus
29:29, "And the holy garments of Aaron shall be for his
sons after him, to be anointed in them, and to be consecrated
in them." The anointing was to consecrate one for a special
service. The corresponding word for christos in Hebrew is "mashiyach,"
which we transliterate to messiah. This very specific term is
only found in Daniel 9:25-26. Messiah means exactly what christos
means, just two different languages. There are several scriptural
references to the coming of a special one to help the people.
The first and most important one is directly from the Lord;
as His creation falls from grace in the Garden, He prophesies
that the woman’s seed will become the redeemer of this
situation and will subdue the influence of the serpent and the
knowledge of good and evil (Genesis 3:15). The Samaritan woman
was obviously familiar with the prophecies and looking for the
messiah to come in her lifetime. John’s use of Logos lends
support to the Messiah-Christ nature of this one.
Many prophets had come and gone, and many roamed the Holy Land
in the days of this Samaritan woman. But the truth had gotten
lost in the troubles and confusions of the times. For the preceding
four hundred years, little had gone well for the faithful among
the several sects of the Jews. They had been taught for generations
that God would guide, protect, and speak to them. As a group,
the chosen people had a history of mystical connection with
God and God’s immediate participation in their lives.
Mystical teachings and tales throughout the scriptures taught,
supported, and gave living examples of this relationship. One
is found in Deuteronomy chapter 4:35-36, "Unto thee it
was shown, that thou might know that the Lord is God; there
is none else besides him. Out of heaven he made you to hear
his voice, that he might instruct you; and upon earth he made
you to see his great fire; and hear his words out of the midst
of the fire." What impact these words must have had. God
is oneness and there is nothing beyond this oneness. We were
first made in heaven to hear God’s voice and learn directly
from Him and then made again upon earth to see his great fire
and hear his words in the fire -- the fire of His spirit upon
us, as John notes in the beginning of the Revelation. In 1Kings,
chapter 19:9-14, Elijah has a direct experience with God that
reveals an inner and outer quality to our spiritualization process.
As you read it, notice the symbolic nature of some of the elements
in the story: mountain, cave, wind, earthquake, fire, and silence
-- these same symbols occur in the Revelation.
9 And he [Elijah] came there [Horeb, the mountain of God] to
a cave, and lodged there; and, behold, the word of the Lord
came to him, and He said unto him, "What are you doing
10 And he said, "I have been very zealous for the Lord,
the God of hosts; for the children of Israel have forsaken thy
covenant, torn down thine altars, and slain thy prophets with
the sword. And I, even I only, am left; and they seek my life,
to take it away."
11 And He said, "Go forth, and stand upon the mount before
the Lord." And, behold, the Lord passed by, and a great
and strong wind rent the mountains, and broke in pieces the
rocks before the Lord; but the Lord was not in the wind; and
after the wind an earthquake; but the Lord was not in the earthquake;
12 and after the earthquake a fire; but the Lord was not in
the fire; and after the fire a still small voice.
13 And it was so, when Elijah heard it, that he wrapped his
face in his mantle, and went out, and stood in the entrance
of the cave. [Note that he had not actually left the cave to
experience the mountaintop with the Lord in verse 11. Therefore,
he must be experiencing this within his mind.] And, behold,
there came a voice unto him, and said, "What are you doing
14 And he said, "I have been very zealous for the Lord,
the God of hosts; for the children of Israel have forsaken thy
covenant, torn down thine altars, and slain thy prophets with
the sword. And I, even I only, am left; and they seek my life,
to take it away." [Later, in verse 18, the Lord informs
Elijah that he is not the only one left; 7,000 others remain
15 And the Lord said to him, "Go, return on thy way to
the wilderness of Damascus: and when thou comest, thou shalt
anoint Hazael to be king over Syria;
16 and Jehu the son of Nimshi shalt thou anoint to be king
over Israel; and Elisha the son of Shaphat of Abel-meholah shalt
thou anoint to be prophet in your place." [Elijah had earlier
asked to be replaced.]
The important points in these verses are the outer places that
represent inner ones: the cave of consciousness; the mountain
of God within the cave. It is also so helpful to realize that
the voice of God is not that of thunder from the sky, but rather
the still, small voice within. Furthermore, God’s voice
speaks from within but guides Elijah to outer actions. This
is an important point in the Cayce interpretation: inner attunement
is to be applied and lived in the outer world among one another.
Living the contact with God in our outer lives is a fundamental
teaching that is too often forgotten. There is a wonderful moment
in the Gospel of Mark, chapter 12:28-34, when a scribe from
the Temple is listening to Jesus’ discussion with some
Sadducees, Pharisees, and Herodians. The scribe was so impressed
with Jesus’ answers that he speaks up and asks a question
which draws an answer key to our spiritual journey -- the oneness
of it all and its inner and outer nature:
28 And one of the scribes came, and heard them questioning
together, and knowing that he [Jesus] had answered them well,
asked him, "What commandment is the first of all?"
29 Jesus answered, "The first is, ‘Hear, O Israel;
The Lord our God, the Lord is one;
30 and thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart,
and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy
31 The second is this, ‘Thou shalt love thy neighbor
as thyself.’ There is no other commandment greater than
32 And the scribe said unto him, "Of a truth, Teacher,
thou hast well said that He is one; and there is none other
33 And to love Him with all the heart, and with all the understanding,
and with all the strength, and to love his neighbor as himself,
is much more than all whole burnt-offerings and sacrifices."
34 And when Jesus saw that the scribe answered wisely, he said
unto him, "Thou art not far from the kingdom of God."
To love God (the Oneness) with all our being and our neighbor
as ourselves sums up the whole of the laws and prophets. Notice
how the scribe’s ability to perceive this truth from within
himself results in Jesus’ statement that the scribe is
not far from fully realizing the kingdom of God.
The mystical, inner approach to God and to realizing our ultimate
nature and destiny is an important key to interpreting the Revelation
in a manner that is truly meaningful to us today.
In the vast body of Edgar Cayce’s work, he first mentioned
the Revelation in a physical health reading for a twenty-year-old
female suffering from seizures (2501-6). In the course of analyzing
her problem and suggesting a course of action to help her, Cayce
casually mentioned that it would "be very good for the
doctor here to read The Revelation and understand it! especially
in reference to this body!" Three years later, at an evening
gathering of some fifty people in the living room of a close
friend, Cayce gave the first reading on the Revelation. It took
all of fifty minutes, but everyone was amazed at the approach
Cayce was taking. His stenographer recorded the reading as follows:
TEXT OF READING 281-16
This psychic reading given by Edgar Cayce at the Edmonds' home,
611 Pennsylvania Ave., Norfolk, Va., this 13th day of March,
1933, in accordance with request made by Norfolk Study Group
#1, for their opening meeting at which approximately fifty people
P R E S E N T
Edgar Cayce; Gertrude Cayce, Conductor; Gladys Davis, Steno.
Hugh Lynn Cayce, the Misses Edmonds, other members of Group
#1, the Prayer Group, visiting members of other groups, etc.
R E A D I N G
Time of Reading 9:00 to 9:50 P. M. Eastern Standard Time.
1. GC: You will give at this time an interpretation of the
Book of Revelation as recorded in the King James version of
the bible, explaining the general plan and theme, the significance
of the Book, and give such explanations of the symbols used
as will make this book of personal value to those present seeking
to awaken and develop the inner life. You will then answer the
questions which will be asked regarding various parts of this
2. EC: Yes, we have the text written in the Revelation, as
recorded in the King James version of same.
3. In making this worth while in the experience of individuals
who are seeking for the light, for the revelation that may be
theirs as promised in the promises of same, it would be well
that there be considered first the conditions which surrounded
the writer, the apostle, the beloved, the last of those chosen;
writing to a persecuted people, many despairing, many fallen
away, yet, many seeking to hold to that which had been delivered
to them through the efforts and activities of those upon whom
the spirit had fallen by the very indwelling and the manifestations
that had become the common knowledge of all.
4. Remember, then, that Peter - chosen as the rock, chosen
to open the doors of that known today as the church - had said
to this companion, "I will endeavor to keep thee in remembrance;
even after my demise I will return to you." [II Peter 1:15]
5. The beloved, then, was banished to the isle, and was in
meditation, in prayer, in communion with those saints who were
in that position to see, to comprehend the greater needs of
those that would carry on.
6. And, as given in the beginning, "I was in the Spirit
Lord's day, and beheld, and heard, and saw, and was told to
7. Why, then, ye ask now, was this written (this vision) in
such a manner that is hard to be interpreted, save in the experience
of every soul who seeks to know, to walk in, a closer communion
8. For the visions, the experiences, the names, the churches,
the places, the dragons, the cities, all are but emblems of
those forces that may war within the individual in its journey
through the material, or from the entering into the material
manifestation to the entering into the glory, or the awakening
in the spirit, in the inter-between, in the borderland, in the
9. Hence we find, as the churches are named, they are as the
forces that are known as the senses, that must be spiritualized
by the will of the individual made one in the very activities
in a material world.
10. And the elders and the Lamb are the emblems, are the shadows
of those acceptances or rejections that are made in the experiences
of the individual.
11. As we find, in the various manners and forms that are presented
as the vision or visions proceed, every force that is manifest
is of one source; but the soul, the will of the individual,
either makes such into a coordinating or cooperating influence
in bringing about more and more manifestations in the material
world of those experiences that are seen from the spiritual
conditions, or the opposite.
12. Why, then, is it presented, ye ask, in the form of symbols?
Why is there used those varied activities? These are for those
that were, or will be, or may become, through the seeking, those
initiated into an understanding of the glories that may be theirs
if they will but put into work, into activity, that they know
in the present.
13. In seeking, then, do individuals find from the beginning
that there is presented, in every line, in every form, that
good and bad (as termed) that arises from their activity, in
what they do about that knowledge they have respecting law,
the love, the mercy, the understanding of the wherefore of the
Lamb's advent into the world that they, through His ensample
set, may present themselves before that throne even as He, becoming
- as given - heirs, joint heirs with Him, as the sons of God,
to that EVERLASTING glory that may be had in Him.
14. Then, seek to know what self is lacking, even as given
in the first four chapters (as divided in the present).
15. What is lacking in self? Are ye cold? Are ye hot? Have
ye been negligent of the knowledge that is thine? Are ye stiff-necked?
Are ye adulterous in thought, in act, in the very glories that
16. Then, again - may ye not have had through the varied experiences
those presentations before the throne, even as the elders twenty
and four that are represented by the figures within thine own
head, that which is shown in the physical forces of self? Has
it not been given to thee, or has not the message come as the
rider of the pale, the black, the white, or the red horses that
are the figures of the messages that have come to thee in thine
varied experiences? Or, art thou among the figures represented
in the Babylon, or in the rivers of blood, or in the trees of
17. These we see, then, represent SELF; self's body-physical,
self's body-mental, self's body-spiritual; with the attributes
of the body-physical, attributes of the body- mental, attributes
of the body-spiritual, and they are ONE in thee - even as the
Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit is one in Him.
18. Then, dost thou seek to enter into the glories of the Father?
Whosoever will may come, may take of the water of life freely
- even as flows from the throne of the Lamb. For, the very leaves
of the trees are for the healing of the nations, and - if ye
will accept - the blood cleanses from all unrighteousness. How?
From what? Saves self from what? To what are ye called? To know
that only from the falling away of self may ye be saved. Unto
the glorifying of self in Him may ye be saved.
19. Then, whosoever will, come!
20. READY FOR QUESTIONS:
21. (Q) Please interpret the fall of Babylon as referred to
in the 14th, 17th, and 18th chapters of Revelation.
(A) Babylon represented the individual; those periods through
which every soul passes in its delving into the varied mysteries
that are the experiences of the carnal- mental, the spiritual-mental
forces of the body; and, as viewed from that presented, may
come to the knowledge only through the CLEANSING that is shown
must come to those that would be saved from the destructions
that are given there.
22. (Q) What did the angel mean when he said: "I will
tell thee the mystery of the woman, and of the beast that carrieth
(A) That which is understood by those that follow in the way
of the Lamb, that come to know how man separates himself through
the desires to become as the procreator in the beasts; which
made the necessity of the shedding of blood for redemption,
for it brought sin IN the shedding - and only through same may
there be the fulfilling; and as given, the heavens and the earth
may pass, but His law, His love, His mercy, His grace, endureth
for those who WILL seek to know His will.
23. (Q) Where are the dead until Christ comes? Do they go direct
to Him when they die?
(A) As visioned by the beloved, there are those of the saints
making intercession always before the throne for those that
are passing in and out of the inter-between; even as He, the
Christ, is ever in the consciousness of those that are redeemed
The passing in, the passing out, is as but the summer, the
fall, the spring; the birth into the interim, the birth into
24. (Q) In what form does the anti-Christ come, spoken of in
Revelation? (A) In the spirit of that opposed to the spirit
of truth. The fruits of the spirit of the Christ are love, joy,
obedience, long-suffering, brotherly love, kindness. Against
such there is no law. The spirit of hate, the anti-Christ, is
contention strife, fault-finding, lovers of self, lovers of
praise. Those are the anti-Christ, and take possession of groups,
masses, and show themselves even in the lives of men.
25. (Q) Will we be punished by fire and brimstone?
(A) That as builded by self; as those emblematical influences
are shown through the experiences of the beloved in that builded,
that created. For, each soul is a portion of creation - and
builds that in a portion of its experience that it, through
its physical-mental or spiritual-mental, has builded for itself.
And each entity's heaven or hell must, through SOME experience,
be that which it has builded for itself.
Is thy hell one that is filled with fire or brimstone? But
know, each and every soul is tried so as by fire; purified,
purged; for He, though He were the Son, learned obedience through
the things which He suffered. Ye also are known even as ye do,
and have done.
26. (Q) Is this the period of the great tribulation spoken
of in Revelation or just the beginning, and if so just how can
we help ourselves and others to walk more closely with God?
(A) The great tribulation and periods of tribulation, as given,
are the experiences of every soul, every entity. They arise
from influences created by man through activity in the sphere
of any sojourn. Man may become, with the people of the universe,
ruler of any of the various spheres through which the soul passes
in its experiences. Hence, as the cycles pass, as the cycles
are passing, when there IS come a time, a period of readjusting
in the spheres, (as well as in the little earth, the little
soul) - seek, then, as known, to present self spotless before
that throne; even as ALL are commanded to be circumspect, in
thought, in act, to that which is held by self as that necessary
for the closer walk with Him. In that manner only may each atom
(as man is an atom, or corpuscle, in the body of the Father)
become a helpmeet with Him in bringing that to pass that all
may be one with Him.
27. (Q) What is meant by the four beasts?
(A) As given, the four destructive influences that make the
greater desire for the carnal forces, that rise as the beasts
within self to destroy. Even as man, in his desire to make for
companionship, brought those elements within self's own experience.
These must be met. Even as the dragon represents the one that
separated self so far as to fight with, to destroy with, those
that would make of themselves a kingdom of their own.
28. (Q) What is meant by " - a new heaven and a new earth"?
(A) Former things have passed away, when there is beheld within
self that the whole will of the Creator, the Father, the place
of abode the forces within and without, make for the NEW heaven,
the NEW earth.
29. We are through.
Three years later, members of the Glad Helpers prayer healing
group who had been handpicked by Cayce and worked closely with
him, initiated the first of a series of readings on the Revelation.
That series covered 10 readings (281-28 through 281-37) and
took just under a year to complete, from October 26, 1936 to
September 8, 1937. Later, the same group picked up on Cayce’s
connection between the churches in the Revelation and the endocrine
glands in the human body, and several more readings were given
specifically on the endocrine glands (281-46 through 49, 281-51
through 55, 281-57 & 58, and 281-63). That first Glad Helpers’
reading on the Revelation was recorded by his stenographer as
TEXT OF READING 281-28
This psychic reading given by Edgar Cayce at his home on Arctic
Crescent, Virginia Beach, Va., this 26th day of October, 1936,
in accordance with request by those present.
P R E S E N T
Edgar Cayce; Gertrude Cayce, Conductor; Gladys Davis, Steno.
Helen Ellington, Esther Wynne, Hannah Miller, Frances Y. Morrow,
Edith & Florence Edmonds, Elizabeth Perry, Sallie Jones,
Margaret Wilkins, Ruth LeNoir, Myrtle Demaio & Hugh Lynn
R E A D I N G
Time of Reading 11:55 to 12:25 A. M.
1. GC: You will have before you the Glad Helpers, members of
which are present here. First you will give affirmations to
be sent those on the prayer list; next you will consider the
study which has been made by this group for several weeks on
the Book of Revelation in attempting to follow the suggestions
given through this channel that the references in this book
should be applied to experiences in the physical, mental and
spiritual bodies of individuals. [See 2501-6 on 3/24/30.] You
will answer the questions which will be presented on Revelation.
2. EC: Yes, we have the group as gathered here, as a group,
as individuals; their work with others, which - first - we would
commend. For there has been, is being and may be accomplished,
a great deal of hope, of cheer, in the lives and in the experiences
3. And in this manner may this group find within themselves
that peace, that harmony, that is the promise from Him who hath
given, "That as ye ask, as ye seek in my name, that may
the Father do, that I may be glorified through you in the material
4. Be then faithful to that thou hast purposed in thy heart.
For many there be who are weak, discouraged, troubled, that
ye may aid. And as ye do it unto the least of thy brethren ye
do it unto thy Maker. For as He hath given, "Ye that minister
to the sick, to the disconsolate, to those in prison, to those
in turmoils and strife, minister unto me."
At this point in the reading, several affirmations were given
for use by those on the prayer list, which was a normal procedure
for this group. Then, the reading continues addressing their
study of the Revelation.
15. In considering then the studies that have been made with
this group, in the understanding of the Revelation as given
by the beloved of Him: These as we find have been well, and
as you each become conscious in your own experience of the movement
OF the influences THROUGH the body upon the various stages of
awareness, there comes a determination, a desire, a longing
for the greater light. To him, to her that is faithful, there
shall be given a CROWN of light. And His Name shall be above
every name; For ye that have seen the light know in Whom thou
hast believed, and know that in thine own body, thine own mind,
there is set the temple of the living God, and that it may function
in thy dealings with thy fellow man in such measures that ye
become as rivers of light, as fountains of knowledge, as mountains
of strength, as the pastures for the hungry, as the rest for
the weary, as the strength for the weak. Keep the faith. Ready
16. (Q) Are we using the correct methods of breathing and intonation
in our group meditations?
(A) As has been given in Meditation, to some, THIS then is
the correct manner: As has been given so oft of old, purge ye
your bodies, washing them with water, putting away those things
of the mind and of the body; for tomorrow the Lord would speak
Hence in this group make thy mind, thy body, as a fit subject
for a visit of thy Lord, thy God. Then as ye seek YE KNOW, as
He hath given, that the wedding feast is prepared and thou hast
bid the guests, and that ye have come with the garments of the
feast with thy Lord, thy Master, thy King, thy Savior. For lowly
as He was in His earthly ministry, He honored all such that
gathered for the commemoration of a union of body, a union of
mind, a union of strength for their worship, their sacrifice,
their meeting with their God. So do ye in thy meditation. For
thy prayer is as a supplication or a plea to thy superior; yet
thy meditation is that thou art meeting on COMMON ground! Then
prepare thyself! In breathing, take into the right nostril,
STRENGTH! Exhale through thy mouth. Intake in thy left nostril,
exhaling through the right; opening the centers of thy body
- if it is first prepared to thine OWN understanding, thine
OWN concept of what YE would have if ye would have a visitor,
if ye would have a companion, if ye would have thy bridegroom!
Then, as ye begin with the incantation of the [Har-r-r-r-r-r-
aum] Ar-ar-r-r-r - the e-e-e, the o-o-o, the m-m-m, RAISE these
in thyself; and ye become close in the presence of thy Maker
- as is SHOWN in thyself! They that do such for selfish motives
do so to their own undoing. Thus has it oft been said, the fear
of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. Wisdom, then, is fear
to misapply knowledge in thy dealings with thyself, thy fellow
man. For as ye are honest, as ye are patient, as ye are sincere
with thyself in thy meeting with thy God, thy Savior, thy Christ,
in thy meditation, ye will be in thy dealings with thy fellow
17. We are through for the present.
The Glad Helpers were used to prayer and meditation sessions.
It was part of their normal process, ultimately leading to laying
on of hands. A major Cayce teaching identifies prayer with lifting
oneself up and calling upon God, and meditation with actually
entering into direct, conscious contact with God, as the disciple
John had done in receiving his revelation. In the very next
reading on this subject Cayce explained why John was able to
take his prayers to a new, deep meditation level:
"the body of the Christ represented to the world a channel,
a door, a mediation to the Father. Hence this then may become
as the study of self in its relationship to the material world,
the mental world, the spiritual world. And this is the manner
that has been presented as the way through which each individual
would make application of same, of the life of the Christ in
his or her own experience."
John’s experience is made possible because Christ is
a channel, a door, a mediation to the Father; and each of us
can apply this in our lives. The Revelation represented a new
connection between God and each of us through Christ. John’s
vision reveals the transitions, passages, and stages he went
through and we may go through to make a new relationship with
God, similar to the one we originally had in the Garden where
we walked and talked with Him. Remember, in the Cayce paradigm,
characters and events in the Bible not only represent individual
souls but also all souls as a group. Adam therefore is an individual
and a group. The experiences recorded in the Bible are those
that all souls experience. Therefore, my soul and yours were
created by God in the beginning, in God’s image, and walked
and talked with Him in that primeval Garden of the original
consciousness. Today, in this present incarnation which so captivates
us, it is hard to believe that somewhere within each of us is
a godling created in the image of God, who once had regular,
conscious contact with its Creator.
In the latter half of the 1950s and early ‘60s, a group
at the A.R.E. New York Center, then located at 34 West 35th
St., began a seven-year study of Cayce’s interpretation
of the Revelation. It was their intention to produce a readable
interpretation that everyone could use. Their work was later
combined with twenty-four of Cayce’s readings on the Revelation
and published in book form by A.R.E. Press, located at the Virginia
Beach, Virginia headquarters of Cayce’s organization,
the Association for Research and Enlightenment, "A.R.E."
The book is still in print and is titled, A Commentary on the
Book of the Revelation, with a descriptive line saying that
it is "Based on a Study of Twenty-Four Psychic Discourses
by Edgar Cayce."
In the late 1960s and early ‘70s, Shane Miller, an artist
on the animated feature film Gulliver’s Travels, completed
a series of color slide-transparencies outlining the key parts
of Cayce’s interpretation of the Revelation. A soundtrack
was added to these and it became a frequently shown film around
the A.R.E. community. Black and white reproductions of some
of these slides appear throughout this book. Throughout the
1970s and early ‘80s, Everett Irion, a long-time student
of the Cayce readings, came from Texas to Virginia Beach to
work at A.R.E. and ultimately led another Revelation study group
based on Cayce’s approach. This resulted in the publication
through A.R.E. Press of another book on the Revelation. In the
1980s, David McMillin came from the Midwest to Virginia Beach
to start a Revelation study group, which continues today, focusing
on the original Cayce instruction that the Revelation could
help healthcare workers better understand how the body works.
He was joined in Virginia Beach by four others: Douglas Richards,
Ph.D., who had been Research Director at A.R.E. for several
years and was deeply involved in improving his own health through
guidance that came through Cayce; Carl Nelson, D.C., who has
a large and popular chiropractic practice; Karen Kluge Waller,
the mother of a handicapped daughter who simply wanted the best
for her child; and Eric Mein, M.D., who had pursued his medical
degree because of his love of Cayce health concepts and a hope
that these could be added to the healthcare models used today.
McMillin, Douglas, Nelson, Waller, Mein, and myself united to
form Meridian Institute, which devotes itself to in-depth health
research based on the Edgar Cayce concepts, some of which include
concepts in the Revelation.
In 2000, another New York student of the Cayce readings, Lynn
Cole, produced a reformatted edition of the original Cayce book
on the Revelation. The interest in the Revelation and the desire
of so many to better understand it continues to stimulate groups
I have studied and applied the readings and Revelation material
in the Cayce legacy for thirty years. I find the Cayce material
to be one of the greatest collections of wisdom that I have
encountered, and an excellent suppliment to the Biblical stories
and lessons. What also impresses me is that Cayce’s concepts
are so in tune with Western and Eastern spiritual, mental, and
physical teachings, from the ancient to the latest discoveries.
But the real proof of this work’s value has come in the
results I have realized in my life by applying these teachings
in the little things every day. Early in my study of Cayce’s
work I read his comments on the Revelation. They were so profound
and meaningful to me and my development as a spiritual person,
that I never stopped rereading them and discussing them with
others who were also seeking to awaken spiritually. In the course
of these thirty years I have written six books based on Cayce’s
concepts and methods, and my intention in writing this book
is to add to the body of existing works on the Revelation, focusing
on the spiritualization process in this strange but captivating
book of the Bible. I’ve divided the book into three sections:
interpretation, personal revelation, and the original material.
It is my hope that this book will help us to experience God
directly and live as co-creators and companions forever! A monumental
task, yes; but as you and I know and have heard before, even
the longest journey begins with one little step, and proceeds
step-by-step. Fortunately, we all have moments of spontaneous
enlightenment, even though we must still continue the ongoing
development. Those moments give us the strength to continue
the spiritualization process.