Before we select a canned interpretive model, shouldn't we first consider what is meant by Ἀποκάλυψις Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ (Rev 1:1)?
Does the Greek better support "revelation OF" or "revelation FROM" Jesus Christ?
Biblical Hermeneutics Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for professors, theologians, and those interested in exegetical analysis of biblical texts. It only takes a minute to sign up.Sign up to join this community
The translation of Ἀποκάλυψις Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ is certainly “the revelation of Jesus Christ.” The real question is whether the genitive phrase should be understood as a subjective genitive or objective genitive.
Subjective genitive: “the revelation of Jesus Christ” (ἀποκάλυψις Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ) is understood as “what Jesus Christ reveals” (ὃ ἀποκαλύπτει ὁ Ἰησοῦς Χριστός)
Objective genitive: “the revelation of Jesus Christ” (ἀποκάλυψις Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ) is understood as “what is revealed about Jesus Christ” (ὃ ἀποκαλύπτεται περὶ τοῦ Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ)
Friedrich Hermann Christian Düsterdieck wrote,1
Düsterdieck, Friedrich Hermann Christian. Critical and Exegetical Handbook to the Revelation of John. Trans. Jacobs, Henry E. New York: Funk, 1887.
Düsterdieck, Friedrich Hermann Christian. Kritisch exegetischer Kommentar über das Neue Testament, Sechzehnte Abtheilung, Kritisch exegetisches Handbuch über die Offenbarung Johannis. 4th ed. Vol. 16. Göttingen: Vandenboeck and Ruprecht, 1887.
Chapter one verse 1 of Revelation sums it up pretty well I think. The revelation is OF JESUS CHRIST, as given by God the father (see john 12:49) unto him (Jesus) to show us things which must shortly come to pass. So to me, this was a third heaven angel giving John a revelation, or revealing who Jesus is. Chapter 22:16 says this. "I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches."
In his book, "The New Testament as Literature: A Very Short Introduction," Kyle Keefer states regarding the phrase "the revelation of Jesus Christ":
"These words contain a grammatical ambiguity. The "of" could function like the phrase "loaf of bread," in which both words name the same object. If read this way, Jesus Christ will be revealed; he himself is the revelation. The "of" could also denote possession, indicating that the revelation belongs to Jesus and has its source in him, as in the phrase "wrath of God." This ambiguity need not be decided as either/or. Clearly the book contains a special message from Christ, but at the same time, the book carefully reveals the identity of the messenger. What will be revealed in this book belongs to Jesus alone, and the content of the prophecy (1:3) will explain who he is."
Conclusion: Both meanings are intentional.