But always, first of all, I warn you through my servants the prophets. I, the Sovereign Lord, have now done this.
In this verse God shows His desire to reveal His plans to His servants before events take place. God does not just spring events on nations. He gradually warns them of coming disaster, as He did in the case of Jonah and Nineveh.
The book of Revelation was written to seven different “angels” of the seven churches of Asia. Most commentators believe that these angels were the pastors of those churches. The local pastors received revelation from the Holy Spirit of God’s intention toward their churches.
In our churches today, if the pastor needs to repent, the Holy Spirit will convict the leader or use circumstances to force him to face an issue. This leading by the Holy Spirit protects the flock, since the local church will follow the leader in either the right or wrong direction.
If you are concerned about the direction of your church, pray for your pastor. God has obligated Himself to speak to him, so pray, asking the Lord to give your pastor the courage to obey as he hears God speaking.