write the things

Jesus Christ instructs the apostle John to write what he will see: the past, the present, and the future.

Note that the apostle will be recording his observations - some things recognizable to him and others never seen before. He will also be recording his observations sequentially, and unless he employs figurative devices like a simile to describe something, much of his descriptions can be taken literally. However, what the apostle recognizes may be very foreign to us two thousand years later.

From Revelation: An Explication © Helpmewithbiblestudy.org: A resource for learning how to read the Bible.