Revelation’s visions often put the Son with the Father, but the Holy Spirit is generally absent. For example:
Receiving the Book of Revelation
“God” gave the visions of Revelation to “Jesus Christ” and Jesus gave it to His angel to give to John (Rev 1:1). The Holy Spirit is absent from this sequence. There-after, Revelation itself is referred to as “the word of God and to the testimony of Jesus Christ” (Rev 1:2).
Both “Him Who sits on the Throne, and … The Lamb” are praised and worshiped (Rev 5:13-14; 7:10) but the Holy Spirit is never praised or worshiped.
In Revelation 4, the Holy Spirit is present in the throne room, described as “before the throne” (Rev 4:5) but the beings in the throne room ignore the Holy Spirit and “give glory and honor and thanks (only) to Him who sits on the throne, to Him who lives forever and ever” (Rev 4:9-10).
In Revelation 5, as Jesus enters the throne room, the Holy Spirit departs “sent out into all the earth” (Rev 5:6). Now, while the Holy Spirit was not praised previously, both “Him Who sits on the Throne, and … The Lamb” are praised (Rev 5:13).
On the Throne
Jesus sat down with His Father on His throne (Rev 3:21; 12:5) but the Holy Spirit never sits on the throne. Rather, the Holy Spirit is “before His throne” (Rev 1:4; 4:5); apparently subordinate to “God who sits on the throne” (Rev 19:4).
The saved are described as “first fruits to God and to the Lamb” (Rev 14:4); “a kingdom, priests to His God (Jesus’ God) and Father” (Rev 1:6); With His blood, Jesus has “made them to be a kingdom and priests to our God” (Rev 5:9-10). No Holy Spirit involvement.
“The seal of the living God,” which is put on the foreheads of God’s servants (Rev 7:2-3), is “His (the Lamb’s) Name and the Name of His Father” (Rev 14:1).
Christian faith is often portrayed as consisting of two parts, referring to God and Jesus; e.g.:
- “The word of GOD and the testimony of JESUS” (Rev 1:9; cf. Rev 6:9);
- “The commandments of GOD and … faith in JESUS” (Rev 14:12);
- “The commandments of GOD and ... the testimony of JESUS” (Rev 12:17);
- “Their testimony of JESUS and … the word of GOD” (Rev 20:4).
Apparently, faith in the Holy Spirit is not required.
Through Christ’s death, “the kingdom of our GOD and the authority of HIS CHRIST have come” (Rev 12:10). No Holy Spirit.
On Judgment Day, while the saved will stand “before THE THRONE (representing the Father) and before the LAMB” (Rev 7:9), the lost will attempt to hide “from the presence of Him Who sits on the Throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb” (Rev 6:16-17). The saved do not stand before the Holy Spirit and the lost do not hide from the Holy Spirit.
On that day, Jesus will tread “the wine press of the fierce wrath of God, the Almighty” (19:15).
The New Earth
On the new earth, “He Who sits on the Throne will spread His tabernacle over them” and “The Lamb … will be their shepherd” (Rev 7:16-17). No Holy Spirit.
The “kingdom of the world … (will) become the kingdom of OUR LORD and of HIS CHRIST” (Rev 11:15).
“The Lord GOD THE ALMIGHTY and the LAMB are” the temple of the New Jerusalem. (Rev 21:22).
“The glory of GOD has illumined it, and its lamp is the LAMB” (Rev 21:23),
“A river of the water of life, clear as crystal, coming from the throne of GOD and of the LAMB” (Rev 22:1; cf. Rev 22:3). In other words, only God and the Lamb will sit on the throne; no Holy Spirit.
In Revelation 1:4-5, John mentions the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in a triadic passage but that is not part of the visions of Revelation. It is part of John’s own introduction to and context setting for the book.
From a Trinitarian perspective, in which the Holy Spirit is a third Person; co-equal with the Father, how does one explain the absence of the Holy Spirit from key moments in the visions of the Book of Revelation?