Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Last Things

The closing chapters of Revelation teach us that many blessings await the church in the age to come. In the age to come, we will praise God when he avenges all the wrongs done to us by his enemies (Rev 19:1-3). It will be our privilege to dress in “fine linen, bright and pure” which represents our righteous deeds (19:8) and to be welcomed into the great Marriage Supper of the Lamb, where we will be presented to Christ as a bride (19:9-10). At this banquet we will rejoice and exult and give glory to the Lamb (19:7). We will also reign with Christ on the earth for a thousand years, since the second death has no power over us (20:4-6). During this time we will continue our service as priests of God and Christ (20:6).

After the thousand years heaven and earth will be made new and a new city of Jerusalem will come down from God (21:1-2). At this time the dwelling place of God will be with man: “He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God” (21:3). All the painful aspects of life will be done away with forever, for God will wipe away all tears and abolish death and crying and pain (21:4). We will drink from the water of life without payment (21:6) and God will be our God and we will be his sons and daughters (21:7). We will dwell in safety within the jewel-encrusted walls of the New Jerusalem in the presence of God himself, and the city will be illuminated by his glory (21:9-26). In this city, we will worship before the throne of God and of the Lamb. We will look upon his face, and his name will be written on our foreheads. We will reign with him forever (22:1-5). This future hope should bolster our faith and strengthen us to endure the hardships of this life. At the same time, the thought of the future that awaits us should cause us to long for the age to come, when God will make all things new.

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