Join us as we study Revelation 19:1-10. In today’s lesson, we will look at the worship service in heaven that occurs when Christ makes His return in Revelation 19. Continue Reading…
Archives For Revelation
This sermon covers the Wedding of the Lamb and the Victory of the Rider on the white horse in Chapter 19 of Revelation.
Sermon Delivered 8/20/2017 in the Evening Service.
This sermon covers the weeping over the fall of Babylon and the punishment for worldly living in Chapter 18 of Revelation.
Sermon Delivered 8/13/2017 in the Evening Service.
Podcast: Discover the end times with a Sunday Evening teaching from Revelation 17 “The Woman & The Beast.”
In my devotional this morning I was inspired by the content that Oswald Chambers put forth. He addresses an issue that is not discussed as much as it should be in the Christian world today. Chambers addressed the topic of how to get more connected with God. I paraphrased a few of my thoughts while reading it below. (you can read the entire devotional for yourself at www.utmost.org)
My vision of God is dependent on the condition of my character. If my character is flawed, so will my vision be. My character determines whether God’s truth can be revealed to me.
Before you can claim to see the Lord, there must be something that is conformed to the likeness of God in you. This requires you to put God first in all circumstances before we can be in continual communion with Him.
As I was reading and thinking through this I couldn’t help but thinking of my life and those around me seeking a deeper relationship with God without knowing really how to get there. It would seem that in the midst of all the easy-going self-help / motivational sermons and bible studies that we have lost our understanding of what it takes to have a correct relationship with God.
[Side Note: I say this because I listen to a lot of podcasts from across the nation and I read a lot of books and recently it seems that we shy away from the root problem of sin and the value of living a holy life. To be honest, it is troubling to me that the only place I seem to find any illusion to a commitment to holiness is found in the Scripture and in the writings of older theologians such as Calvin, Spurgeon, Whitfield, Moody, etc. or ones that are not as old such as Oswald Chambers or Bill Graham.]
Let us not be fooled friends, the Lord gave you grace for salvation to cover your sins and deliver you from the perils of torment. But He now expects you as Lord to follow Him and be holy unto Him.
“ Therefore, preparing your minds for action, and being sober-minded, set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ.  As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance,  but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct,  since it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.” (1 Peter 1:13-16 ESV)
I am not saying that you will or are immediately perfect or sinless. Because we all still fall short of God and even Paul dealt with the struggles of sin in the flesh. (Romans 7) But even Paul while struggling in his sin knew that he could not keep sinning and be in right relationship with God.
“[6:1] What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound?  By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it?  Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death?  We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.
 For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his.  We know that our old self was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin.  For one who has died has been set free from sin.  Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him.  We know that Christ, being raised from the dead, will never die again; death no longer has dominion over him.  For the death he died he died to sin, once for all, but the life he lives he lives to God.  So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus.
 Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, to make you obey its passions.  Do not present your members to sin as instruments for unrighteousness, but present yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life, and your members to God as instruments for righteousness.  For sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but under grace.” (Romans 6:1-14 ESV)
Brothers and sisters in Christ, we must realize that the Lord desires for you to be in correct relationship with him and that in order for this to happen we must stop sinning and replace that sin with His presence in our lives. It is the only way we can become closer to him.
Lord, correct my character so I can see you faithfully and you can reveal your truth to me. Lord remove my sin from me so that I can walk more faithfully to you.
Quotes on Living Holy Lives
Spurgeon – “Holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord”(read more here)
D.L. Moody – “Lord make me as holy as a sinner saved by grace can be”
Billy Graham – “holiness is God’s priority for our earthly lives. A disciple of Christ should always be careful not to place a higher value on being “happy” than on being holy. Yes, it gives our heavenly Father pleasure for us to have happiness, but not at the cost of our personal holiness.” (read more here)
John Brown – “Holiness does not consist in mystic speculations, enthusiastic fervors, or uncommanded austerities; it consists in thinking as God thinks, and willing as God wills.”
AW Tozer – “The holy man is not one who cannot sin. A holy man is one who will not sin.
The true Christian ideal is not to be happy but to be holy.
The whole purpose of God in redemption is to make us holy and to restore us to the image of God. To accomplish this He disengages us from earthly ambitions and draws us away from the cheap and unworthy prizes that worldly men set their hearts upon.
The true Christian ideal is not to be happy but to be holy.
No man should desire to be happy who is not at the same time holy. He should spend his efforts in seeking to know and do the will of God, leaving to Christ the matter of how happy he shall be.”
What have you dedicated more time to this week? Your happiness or your holiness?
Do you have any scriptures or quotes that inspire you to be more holy in your walk with Christ? Post them as a comment for all to see.
[5:1] Then I saw in the right hand of him who was seated on the throne a scroll written within and on the back, sealed with seven seals.  And I saw a mighty angel proclaiming with a loud voice, “Who is worthy to open the scroll and break its seals?”  And no one in heaven or on earth or under the earth was able to open the scroll or to look into it,  and I began to weep loudly because no one was found worthy to open the scroll or to look into it.  And one of the elders said to me, “Weep no more; behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has conquered, so that he can open the scroll and its seven seals.”
 And between the throne and the four living creatures and among the elders I saw a Lamb standing, as though it had been slain, with seven horns and with seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth.  And he went and took the scroll from the right hand of him who was seated on the throne.  And when he had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each holding a harp, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints.  And they sang a new song, saying,
“Worthy are you to take the scroll
and to open its seals,
for you were slain, and by your blood you ransomed people for God
from every tribe and language and people and nation,
 and you have made them a kingdom and priests to our God,
and they shall reign on the earth.”
 Then I looked, and I heard around the throne and the living creatures and the elders the voice of many angels, numbering myriads of myriads and thousands of thousands,  saying with a loud voice,
“Worthy is the Lamb who was slain,
to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might
and honor and glory and blessing!”
 And I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea, and all that is in them, saying,
“To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb
be blessing and honor and glory and might forever and ever!”
 And the four living creatures said, “Amen!” and the elders fell down and worshiped.
(Revelation 5 ESV)
Introduction of the one who is worthy
So what do we know about Him?
So what is His purpose?
So what does this mean for us today?
- Verse 5 – Jesus came to conquer sin and death as the remnant, the Lion from the tribe of Judah and the root of Jesse. His plan has been foretold through prophets for hundreds of years. This was not a fly by night scheme but preordained by God from the beginning of time.
- Verse 6 – Jesus was the sacrificial Lamb as illustrated through the Passover in Exodus, prophesied about in Isaiah 49-56 as the suffering servant, demonstrated in the Gospels and explained in the Epistles (Hebrews 2:9, 2 Corinthians 5:21). Jesus is the Lamb that gave His life that you may have life. He died for your and my sins on the cross. He is the perfect sacrifice.
- Verse 6 – The Lamb controls all, sees all and His spirit is all. Just because He was slain does not mean that He is inferior. It was the will of the Father for the Lamb to be slaughtered to redeem us from sin. He did this by choice. (Isaiah 53:6, 10-12; John 3:16)
- Verse 7 – Jesus’ will and desire is to do the will of God the Father.
As these things of God are revealed to me through this book of Revelation, I cant help but identify with the sentiment of worship to God as the elders and hosts of heaven did in verses 8-14 as they recounted all the things He has done and who He is.
So what do we learn about the scroll?
- It is written. Because it is written, it is an expression of God’s sovereignty over creation. Everything that has happened or will happen in creation is in the scroll and therefore it is ordained to happen.
- God is the only holder of the book and because of that His authority enforces the book. Think of it this way, Would you carry around a book of lies or untruth? No, we keep the things that are true and valuable. Not the things that are worthless. So let me ask you, how much more truthful is the scroll that the one that spoke creation into being worth?
- Only God knows what is in the book. No matter what knowledge we have or claim to have. It was all either revealed by God or is false hood.
- It is sealed by seven seals. Seven being the number of perfection, His scroll is sealed perfectly for those who are made perfect by the blood of the lamb.
What does this mean for us today?
- God is sovereign in our lives and He knows you and I. Whether you have a relationship with God or not, He knows you and the situation you are in.
- God holds the scroll containing His will and no one else is privileged to the information unless it is given by God.
- God knows all things and therefore is the Author and Perfecter of life. He knows what has occurred in the past and will occur in the future.
After this I looked, and behold, a door standing open in heaven! And the first voice, which I had heard speaking to me like a trumpet, said, “Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after this.” At once I was in the Spirit, and behold, a throne stood in heaven, with one seated on the throne. And he who sat there had the appearance of jasper and carnelian, and around the throne was a rainbow that had the appearance of an emerald. Around the throne were twenty-four thrones, and seated on the thrones were twenty-four elders, clothed in white garments, with golden crowns on their heads. From the throne came flashes of lightning, and rumblings and peals of thunder, and before the throne were burning seven torches of fire, which are the seven spirits of God, and before the throne there was as it were a sea of glass, like crystal.
And around the throne, on each side of the throne, are four living creatures, full of eyes in front and behind: the first living creature like a lion, the second living creature like an ox, the third living creature with the face of a man, and the fourth living creature like an eagle in flight. And the four living creatures, each of them with six wings, are full of eyes all around and within, and day and night they never cease to say,
“Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord God Almighty,
who was and is and is to come!”
And whenever the living creatures give glory and honor and thanks to him who is seated on the throne, who lives forever and ever, the twenty-four elders fall down before him who is seated on the throne and worship him who lives forever and ever. They cast their crowns before the throne, saying,
“Worthy are you, our Lord and God,
to receive glory and honor and power,
for you created all things,
and by your will they existed and were created.”
(Revelation 4 ESV)
Revelation 4 is not an easy set of verses to apply one’s life outside of the display of the awesome power and aw of the scene that John describes. I have found that in some cases when studying Scripture the application is just that. To see God for who He truly is as John did in his vision and simply stand in Aw of Him in worship.
As I was working through this powerful scene, I couldn’t help but think of a song that has become popular lately. In my mind’s eye, I imagine that this song may have been similar to what John had heard in his vision.
What do you imagine it will be like when we see Jesus sitting on the throne in heaven?
 “And to the angel of the church in Laodicea write: ‘The words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of God’s creation.
 “‘I know your works: you are neither cold nor hot. Would that you were either cold or hot!  So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth.  For you say, I am rich, I have prospered, and I need nothing, not realizing that you are wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked.  I counsel you to buy from me gold refined by fire, so that you may be rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself and the shame of your nakedness may not be seen, and salve to anoint your eyes, so that you may see.  Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline, so be zealous and repent.  Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.  The one who conquers, I will grant him to sit with me on my throne, as I also conquered and sat down with my Father on his throne.  He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.’” (Revelation 3:14-22 ESV)
The past few days it seems like these verses have been coming up in random conversations quite often. I am not sure why but it I feel like I have been working my way through them in many different ways.
As I have been discussing these verses with different people, it seems that the majority of those I have talked with feel like the verses above apply to believers. This has become more burdensome to me the more I hear it. If we take verses 15-16 ( “‘I know your works: you are neither cold nor hot. Would that you were either cold or hot!  So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth.) to be specifically for believers the verses can be interpreted to say that if you are not working within the Church then God will reject you. This message would be implying that we can lose our salvation by not doing the works of the Church.
This my friends is not true. When you compare the characteristics of that interpretation to other scriptures speaking of our salvation and regeneration found in the New Testament (Eph.2:8-9, Titus 3:5, etc.) the argument creates conflict and contradiction.
We know that the Bible does NOT contradict itself, so what does these passages tell us?
What warning is the church of Laodicea given?
And What is the application for us today?
The Warning Given to Laodicea
First we must look into the context, we can see from verses 14 that this was written specifically to the Church at Laodicea and NOT all believers. Jesus is giving revelation to a specific group of people at a specific time for a specific situation. So it is not evidence of believers loosing salvation but that the people in the physical location of the church of Laodicea were performing the tasks of the church and yet they were not completely committed to God. We see this when Jesus tells John that they are neither Hot nor Cold. The people of the church are not really committed.
We can also see this in the way that Jesus then outlines to the church what they are doing.
 For you say, I am rich, I have prospered, and I need nothing, not realizing that you are wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked. = The people are prideful and do not see the futility of their ways.
 I counsel you to buy from me gold refined by fire, so that you may be rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself and the shame of your nakedness may not be seen, and salve to anoint your eyes, so that you may see. =Jesus has gone to all of them and counseled them to receive salvation so that they may not be put to shame but will be healed.
 Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline, so be zealous and repent.  Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me. =Jesus is coming to them with warning because He desires for their salvation and again offers them salvation.
 The one who conquers, I will grant him to sit with me on my throne, as I also conquered and sat down with my Father on his throne.= “The one who conquers”> See Rev. 12:11
 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. = Again Jesus pleads with the people to hear His words of salvation.
The Application for Everyone
The application for us today is not just for believers but for everyone. We can see that through society and in our churches there are people who deal with the same prideful attitudes that the Laodiceans had. This is a sin.
We know that Jesus desires for all to come to salvation (2Peter 3:9) and therefore He goes to them as He does us with warnings and the message of salvation and healing. His desire for us is to be completely committed to Him.
So I ask you this question, when did you completely commit to Christ? Have you made this commitment for your life?
If you would like to talk more about a commitment to Christ, please Call 1-888-537-8720.