Sometimes it is better to miss something than make it. Robert Corrigan of Clam Point, Massachusetts discovered this when he overslept and missed his flight to LA. He arrived at the departure gate just as his plane was pushing back. An hour later, he was still at the airport, waiting for a standby flight, when he saw the news that his flight, United #175, had crashed into the South Tower of the World Trade Center. Missing that flight saved his life.
Revelation 15 unfolds the final chapter of the drama of redemption. The saved and sealed sing of the mercy and grace of God, even as a righteous and holy God sets the stage for His wrath to be poured out against a warned world. Scripture says that we are all, by nature, children of wrath. But only through faith in Christ, will we become children of the King and escape the wrath to come. What about you? Are you still a child of wrath? Are seven bowls in your future? Or will you miss out – miss out on unrepentance, on wrath, on judgement, and on eternal death. Some things are better to miss than to make. Join us as we examine Revelation 15:1-8 and consider the great joy of missing out on the righteous and holy judgement of God.
The ability of the salmon to find its way home is beyond belief, but it pales in comparison to the promise of Scripture that the Lord ‘knows his own’ and will not lose any that belong to him. Nothing can keep him from finding us. No one can snatch us from his hand. Nothing can separate us from the love of God which is ours in Christ Jesus. We know this intellectually, but it is easy to feel lost sometimes. Our sin and circumstance often seem to obscure his love, his promises, and his mercy. While scripture exhorts us to assurance, we all struggle to feel that our calling and election are sure.
And as Revelation 14 unfolds even further, the scene moves from the first-fruits, to the finished harvest. At the end of the age, the Lord returns in glory to collect all of his own and to carefully distinguish the wheat from the tares, the sons of light from the sons of darkness. None are confused. None are mixed. None end up in the wrong place. God loses none he purposed to save. None are lost who trusted in grace. Join us as we consider Revelation 14:14-20 and consider the assurance of God’s promise that he is coming again and when he does, he will take us – all of us that are his – to himself.
Tunnel vision can be dangerous, and even deadly, especially in our spiritual lives. The enemy of our soul, the ancient Serpent, Satan, wants to blind us to the truths of God’s power and promises. Satan is forever working to foster suspicion of God. And accusation against you. His relentless assaults on God’s promises wear us down, destroy hope, and fill us with despair. Satan wants to give us tunnel vision – seeing only insurmountable crisis and unsolvable brokenness.
Revelation 13 unfolds Satan’s fury against the church. Two beasts arise, making war against the saints, conquering them through crushing power and relentless propaganda. The picture seems hopeless. But that is not the end of the story. In Revelation 14 the true Lamb appears with those where were sealed by the living God with the Holy Spirit. Their number is not diminished. Every one sealed is saved. Not one is lost. The lies of the Dragon were just that. His boasts, his threats, his accusations, his propaganda have all come to nothing. God gives us this word of comfort to restore the peripheral vision of faith. Join us this Lord’s Day as we consider Revelation 14 and learn to avoid spiritual tunnel vision.
In Revelation 13, Satan’s power is unleashed in a brute beast that pursues, crushes, and destroys. But Satan has another, more subtle strategy. A second beast arises from the earth. He appears as a lamb with two small horns, but speaks with the voice of a dragon. While he looks gentle, harmless, and trustworthy, his words are anything but. Through this beast, Satan assaults the Church in the realm of ideas and words, forever working to foster suspicion of God.
How careful are you to test the spirits of this age? To view your world, not through your devices, but through the Word of God? Join us this week as we examine Revelation 13:11-18 and consider the call to resist Satan’s ministry of propaganda.
In Revelation 12, the Dragon, the ancient serpent, the devil, tries and tries to overthrow God’s redemptive plan and purpose, but fails at every turn. Yet his failure never wearies his fury. Revelation 13 unfolds what this fury looks like. Two beasts emerge. One from the sea and one from the earth. An unholy Trinity of counterfeits to Father, Son, and Holy Spirit emerge in the persons of the dragon, the beast from the Sea, and the Beast from the earth.
In this well-known narrative, the Lord Jesus calls us to endurance and faith. Conquest belongs to the Church, but it comes at a cost. Satan’s fury is intense. His warfare unrelenting. When we face his rage, it is easy to despair. Revelation 13 drives this home. But makes it clear that this counterfeit trinity will never conquer. Join us this week as we examine Revelation 13:1-10 and consider “Counterfeits and Conquerors.”
When the Thessalonian Christians heard the Gospel preached by Paul and his company, the Lord called them irresistibly to Himself, changing them from the inside out. Paul rejoices at their conversion that God wrought and also at their continued growth in grace.
Are we marked by Gospel thankfulness? Are we thankful for the work God has done in our lives and also in the lives of fellow believers? Do we long, as did Paul, to see the lost converted? Listen to “Gospel Thankfulness” from 1 Thessalonians 1.
Revelation is a book of comfort, not discomfort, but “forewarned is forearmed.” Christ has broken the power of the Devil. Satan cannot triumph, but he is carrying out a war of terror. Revelation 12 paints this picture with vivid colors and bold brush strokes. Using a palate from Exodus, Daniel, and Zechariah, the Holy Spirit creates a stunning spiritual view of the persecuted church. Satan tries to destroy both Christ and His Church. But fails at every turn.
God’s word tells us that our journey is marked with “here be dragons!” But that is not the last word. The Bible tells us that, “the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil” (1 John 3:8) and that God “disarmed the rulers and authorities and put them to open shame, by triumphing over them in [Christ].” (Colossians 2:15) Join us this week as we examine Revelation 12:1-18 and consider a call to vigilant, yet victorious life in Christ.
In Revelation 11:15 the persistent prayer of the church is answered. “The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, and he shall reign forever and ever.”
In this answered prayer we are reminded that God delights to answer our prayer. Even the most remarkable request. The vision of the Seventh Trumpet declares that we are not forgotten by our God. Our prayers are not in vain. Therefore, we ought to pray boldly, earnestly, and expectantly. Not vainly or carelessly. Listen to “Thy Kingdom Come” as we examine Revelation 11:15-19 and consider the prayer God delights to answer – that His kingdom come and His will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
The gospel is sweet, but first it is sour. The truth sets men free. But first it makes them mad. It exposes their condition before applying the remedy. And to worldly men, this exposure is torment. They will hate the one who dares expose their condition. Sharing the gospel is a deadly dangerous business. But it is a deadly dangerous business that God calls us to take up. What PPE is there for us against the world’s hate for the truth of the gospel?
In Revelation 11, John sees a second vision. A vision of the two witnesses. Witnesses who symbolize boldness and power. Witnesses who faithfully finish their testimony. And witnesses who meet abuse and death for their message. But their suffering is short-lived. Death is not the last word. The God who protected them in life, gives them eternal life and calls them home. And a world so eager to be rid of them, realizes too late the terror of a world without the gospel. Join us this week as we examine Revelation 11:1-14 and consider God’s protection and care for faithful witnesses.
Many of the joys of life depend upon a mixture of extremes — pleasure and pain, joy and sorrow, discomfort and comfort. We even see this in the Bible and the gospel. Before we can accept God’s mercy, we must accept that we deserve only His condemnation. The gospel does not make good men better, it saves the unsavable. It is sweet, but first it is sour. The truth sets men free, but first it makes them mad. It wounds, then heals. It tears, then binds up. It is sweet in the mouth and bitter in the stomach.
How willing are you to say hard things to soften hard hearts? God’s Word can be bitter, but it is also sweet. Jesus has the keys to Death and Hades and gives these gospel keys us. But will we use them? Listen as we examine Revelation 10 and consider our calling to share the gospel boldly.