I wish I could see a show of hands out there of how many people when doing their daily bible reading actually look at the cross-references to other verses in their bibles. I wonder how many people aren't really aware of how much a good study bible and a little extra effort can open up God's word to them in a whole new way.
Admittedly I don't look up the cross-references in my bible every day that I spend in my bible. However, when I do, it is always so cool and I wonder why I don't do it every time I study. Perhaps it is because I'm being lazy and just reading rather than studying. Can anyone else relate? Today was one of those days when I experienced the coolness of the bible. Of course, I'm reading in Revelation and we all need extra help there!
In Revelation 10 we see that our friend apostle John is having another vision. This time in the vision he was given a little book to eat. Yes, to eat. (Rev 10:9) Does this sound familiar? If it hadn't been for my trusty center column references, I wouldn't have remembered a similar scene in Ezekiel 2:8-3:3 either. Hence, the coolness. Here are the similarities between the two passages:
1) Visions. Both passages (Ezekiel 2-3, Rev 10) were visions given to prophets (Ezekiel & John) by God. The cool - I'm loving this word today- thing is that Ezekiel was written over 600 years before Revelation and yet the vision is probably the same vision.
2) Rainbows. Ezekiel 1:28 and Rev 10:1 both picture the bearer of the book/scroll as being surrounded in a way by a rainbow.
3) Words of Judgment. Both the scroll and book referred to in each passage contained words of judgment to be delivered to the people. (Ez 2:9-10, Rev 10:11)
4) Command to Eat & Taste of Honey. I still can't imagine eating a book. However, the prophets did what they were told and it tasted sweet as honey. Hmm...weird. (Ez 2:3, Rev 10:10)
So, what do you think? Do you think this may have been another revealing of the same vision? Just remember, that there is a lot of prophecy in the bible about the end times outside of the book of Revelation. Everything ties together in some way in God's word.
Finally, surprisingly enough, I did get an element of personal application today from this verse:
Rev 10:10 And I took the little book out of the angel's hand, and ate it up; and it was in my mouth sweet as honey: and as soon as I had eaten it, my belly was bitter.
No, the application wasn't to go eat lunch. :) I thought about how my time spent in God's word is so sweet sometimes and how its words are sweet to my soul as said in Proverbs 16:24. However, when the words are something that I need to share with another brother or sister in Christ in love to exhort them to change their behavior, the words can be "bitter" in my gut, because it is not always easy to speak the truth in love.