“John the Revelator,” Friend, Aug. 1995, 48
Revelation is how Heavenly Father tells us what we must do in order to return to Him. Many of the revelations the prophets have received are recorded in the scriptures. One of the Apostles of the Lord who is well known for the revelations he recorded is John the Revelator, also known as John the Beloved.
One day when the Savior was walking near the Sea of Galilee, he saw John and his brother, James, mending nets by their father’s boat. The Savior called the two men to follow Him, and they did. Both became Apostles.
As such, John was a witness of Jesus Christ. He was at Gethsemane and at the Savior’s crucifixion. While on the cross, the Lord asked him to care for His mother. John was one of the first to arrive at the empty tomb after the Savior’s resurrection.
After the Resurrection, when Jesus Christ appeared to the Twelve, He asked John what he wanted most. John answered, “Lord, give unto me power over death, that I may live and bring souls unto thee” (D&C 7:2). John was promised that he would live until the Second Coming and bring many to a knowledge of the gospel.
After the Savior’s death, Church leaders and members were persecuted and killed. The Roman emperor Domitian sent John, who may have then been the only member of the Twelve still alive, as a prisoner to a rocky island called Patmos off the coast of Turkey. There he received the revelation that became the book of Revelation in the New Testament. It is about how good will finally triumph over evil.
Six hundred years before John was born, the prophet Nephi received a similar revelation and was told, “The things which thou shalt see hereafter thou shalt not write; for the Lord God hath ordained the apostle of the Lamb of God that he should write them. …
“And I, Nephi, heard and bear record, that the name of the apostle of the Lamb was John, according to the word of the angel.” (1 Ne. 14:25, 27.)
Nephi warned, “Wo be unto him that shall say: We have received the word of God, and we need no more of the word of God, for we have enough!” (2 Ne. 28:29). Just like people living in ancient times, we need continuing revelation to help us know what Heavenly Father wants us to do. We are blessed to have fifteen living prophets, seers, and revelators—the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve. They receive revelation from God for us today. It is our responsibility to read and study the Lord’s revelations in the scriptures and to follow the counsel of His living prophets.