Commitments – at least four

Vol.4, No.55 – January 19, 2020, Countdown to the end – 41

He who testifies to these things says, “Surely I am coming soon.” Amen. Come, Lord Jesus! The grace of the Lord Jesus be with all. Amen –Revelation 22:20-21

Thousands have attended the blastoff of a space shuttle on a clear Florida morning at Cape Canaveral. Telescopes and binoculars are the dress of the day as the rocket heads into its orbit; it is the grand finale of all that must take place.   

God’s very Word begins with, “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” The very Word of God concludes with God in full control of all the events. His plan is from eternity past; He is unchangeable; not able to be acted upon from outside of Himself (the immutability and impassivity of God).

We are at the conclusion of what God has spoken to us. When we read His Word, it is God Himself speaking to us. His Word is unique, there is none other like Him, and there is no other word like Him. This is the end of God’s Word for earth dwellers, and the end of man’s earthly journey.

The path has been rugged, and many questions remain unanswered, and many problems remain unsolved; however, as man enters eternity in fellowship again with God. All will be answered. –J. V. McGee. Of course, he refers to the position of believers; unbelievers do not have eternal life, they have eternal death, eternal separation from Almighty God..

After the first five verses of Revelation 22, a sightseeing tour of our eternal residence, the apostle John brings four commitments to bear upon us.

Remember that John began the revealing (the Book of Revelation) with a note of blessing pronounced upon those who read, hear, and keep these words.

In conclusion, the Lord Jesus Christ repeats the blessing upon those who keep these words. Reading such makes one contemplate what they think. For what one thinks of God affects how they live their life for God and affects what they think of God.

The Bible is not merely a book to satisfy the curiosity of natural man; God’s expectation is for every created human to live and act upon His Word.

What does John speak of regarding commitments?

  1. We must carefully guard the Word of God (20:6-11, 18-19). We must take the Scriptures, the Word of God, seriously. God means what He says, and says what He means. Humanity might scoff at the facts, deride them, and deny them, however God declares His Word to be faithful and true.
  2. We must be responsible to be faithful (22:12-14). There is an instant coming in which the Heavenly Father allows His Son, Jesus Christ, to effect His promise: I am coming! I will be there soon! I have a place for you! It is prepared specifically for you! Be ready!
  3. We must be His; freed from sin and holy unto God (22:16). Those on the outside are on the dark side. The side of the light is under the finished work of Christ, the Root, the Bright Morning Star. The finished work of Christ settles who we are, where we will be spending eternity, and whose we are.
  4. We must be excited about His return (22:17, 20-21). Come is the grandest, most gracious, and most comforting word in all the Scriptures. The Lord Jesus Christ is coming again. He will come quickly, when least expected.

Worthy are you, our Lord and God! Revelation 4:11

He, who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches! Revelation 2:7

Behold, Jesus is coming soon Revelation 22:6

Life Application

How can we ignore Christ’s Words: “I am coming soon.” How can we ignore John’s writing, “Even so come, Lord Jesus!” How can we ignore those who cross our paths—those who do not know the truths of the Gospel?

Final Thought before we Leave our recent Season

Jesus was born to this world because what He came to do was desperately needed, and could not be done any other way. The disease infected every one of us. This condition was fatal, and there was nothing any of us could do to escape it or defeat it. This universal, inescapable plague is sin –Paul Tripp, in Come Let us Adore Him

New Heaven and New Earth . . .

Vol.4, No.54 – January 12, 2019, Countdown to the end – 41

Then I saw a new Heaven and a new earth, for the first Heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more –Revelation 21:1

Humanity is consumed with that which is new. (Yes, we are part of humanity, so it is “us” as well.) New cars, new clothes, new flat screen TVs, new houses, new boats, new lake houses, new computers, new iPhones, and even a new year.

We are at a point in the book of Revelation of an end to the history of time. Now something new is beginning, eternity. Eternity unveiled. There is a new Heaven, a new earth, a New Jerusalem, all things are new for the believer!

And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” And he said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end.” (21:5-6)

When God speaks, He does so in absolute perfection. We live on a globe that is approximately 25,000 miles in circumference, and 8,000 miles in diameter. The earth is likened to a hollow ball with an outer crust. There is a core that is liquid, seething and boiling, in the heart of the earth. Essentially we live on a giant bomb, and according to Scripture, one day it will pass away (explode), be gone. Satan loses. God (father, Son, and Holy Spirit) wins!

But by the same word the heavens and earth that now exist are stored up for fire, being kept until the day of judgment and destruction of the ungodly (2 Peter 3:7).

Now we dealing with all the redeemed of the ages who, at last, find themselves in God’s Utopia—the holy city, the New Jerusalem. The wicked are no more. They have been judged at the Great White Throne. God’s Day has come! The heirs of eternal life begin to live in all fullness –Donald Grey Barnhouse

What is plain:

  • A new community (21:3-4). Those who have placed their trust in Christ are with Him, for all eternity. He is the joy of the redeemed. In this eternal state, death is a thing of the past. There will be no more funerals, no more graves, no more hospitals, no more broken homes, no more broken hearts; what a day of rejoicing that will be!
  • A new constitution (21:5-8). A place that seems unbelievable, with a structured oversight that one cannot help but identify it as heavenly. It will be a place of safety, satisfaction, and splendid. God will lavish the genius of His creative imagination upon it and will furnish it from resources of His unlimited power. –John Phillips
  • A new city (21:9-27). It will be unusual, new every day, a marvelous home. It will have an aura of a giant diamond, glow with a light all its own, its 12 gates direct to the points of a compass, and its great walls are bedded in twelve foundations—breath taking!

Who will live here? Nothing unclean will ever enter it, nor anyone who does what is detestable or false, but only those who are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.

Worthy are you, our Lord and God! Revelation 4:11

He, who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches! Revelation 2:7

Behold, Jesus is coming soon Revelation 22:6

Life Application

Life in eternity requires one to respond to Christ for His offer of salvation. The ones who responds are cleaned, renewed, for an endless impeccable life. It is only because of Christ that one can come in salvation. It requires a choice this side of Heaven, eternity. That is the only opportunity we have to make that decision. That is God’s elected, predetermined, chosen plan. The requirement? Respond to Him, there is no other way to have eternal life, but through Him alone.

Eliminating Evil at the Root . . .

Vol.4, No.53 – January 5, 2020, Countdown to the end – 40

And he seized the Dragon, that ancient serpent, who is the devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years, and threw him into the pit, and shut it and sealed it over him, so that he might not deceive the nations any longer, until the thousand years were ended. After that he must be released for a little while –Revelation 20:2-3

The real purpose of effective law enforcement is not simply stop criminal activity, but to eliminate it at the root level. Sting operations and covert investigations design to not only find out who is committing the crime, but who the mastermind behind it all is. Once apprehended, the source is made accountable and the flow of crime subsides. Unfortunately, crime in our world seems protected through partisan decisions.

It is not so with God.

The joyful cry of Hallelujah in chapter 19, based in God’s judgment, falls upon the Beast and the False Prophet. These are henchmen, rounded up and thrown into the Abyss, and into the Lake of Fire, burning with sulfur forever. Satan’s evil empire continues to unravel. That is what happens when there is accountability.

The final step in chapter 20 comes as God judges the “brains of the outfit.” Time has come for Divine justice being executed on the one behind the rebellion form the first day, Satan.

Satan longingly sought to establish himself as God. Beginning by leading a group of angels in defiance to God’s authority, he spends long years in activity to thwart God’s righteousness and God’s plan. Every one of us feel satanic pressure both directly and subtly. For the believer, our hearts yearn for the day when the war will be over; when the struggle will cease; when the fighting stops.

Chapter 20 is a section giving assurance. God assures us that this ringleader will get his just desserts. Thus, we get this glimpse of God’s utter victory. We are able to look forward and see Heaven’s justice will indeed prevail. Satan himself is first limited (20:1-3). Then he is eliminated (20:7-10).

The binding of Satan does not refer to the Cross; however, it follows the Second Coming of Christ.

  1. There is the visible appearance of Christ in glory and triumph, followed by the binding of Satan—consigning him to the Abyss
  2. The binding of Satan is not done by Jesus, but by His agent, a great archangel. Satan is chained, restrained, limited in power and function
  3. Thrown into the Abyss, the Abyss is locked and sealed
  4. Satan is effectively removed for a thousand years
  5. The Abyss is likely separate from the earth; in surface, or perhaps away from the planet
  6. The powerful angel seals the door to the Abyss; it cannot be opened during the thousand year confinement (No power is able, not even a powerful archangel. Only an Almighty God can affect the release.

I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. The creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God (Romans 8:18, 21)

Worthy are you, our Lord and God! Revelation 4:11

He, who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches! Revelation 2:7

Behold, Jesus is coming soon Revelation 22:6

Life Application

Be encouraged. Even though we all will have struggles, painful experiences, and have great need for relief; relief comes and it is real! The final outcome of a believer’s life is not in doubt. God makes all wrongs be made right one day. Our God is absolutely aware; His justice will not be thwarted, though it seems so for the moment. God does not ignore our need. He is not managed by our time, nor by our demands.

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