Today I read Revelation 1, John's opening to his revelation that he received while on the isle of Patmos. John sees the Savior in almost the exact same fashion as Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery do when they have their vision and He appears to them in the Kirtland temple. Now, we know from the Book of Mormon that this vision John sees is the same vision that Nephi sees. Nephi is not allowed to record his vision past a certain point because the Savior tells him, it has already been decreed that John the Beloved would write the rest of the revelation.
As I was reading this opening chapter, I got to wondering, why are these revelations so hard to understand? Isaiah wrote his revelations the same way. Although in the case of Isaiah I think it was more him trying to describe things he had never seen before. But why did John the Beloved write his vision this way? Even if it was the way he was shown the vision, why did he not just include the interpretation of the vision? I suspect it has to do with the fact that these things are understood by revelation and that God wants us to come to Him to receive the Spirit so that we can understand it. Because it is a spiritual thing and must be understood by the Spirit.
Most people find the book of Revelation to be almost as incomprehensible as Isaiah. I suspect this is because they try and understand it without asking for God's help, or the approach it as a scholarly work. Things of the Spirit must be understood by the Spirit. It is possible of course to reason out the symbology I suspect, but God has always wanted us to view things of the Spirit with our spiritual eyes and to come to Him. And if we ask Him, He will teach us, I can promise you. I remember when I was a missionary and I was reading Jacob 5 and my eyes were opened and I understood it for the first time. It took me over an hour to read that one chapter because I was learning so much from the Spirit, it seemed that every couple of verses I was being taught something new. We can all have that experience with the book of Revelation or with Isaiah, o rwith any other piece of scripture that is hard for us to understand. He is always there and willing ot help us. We just have to ask. Until tomorrow.