Jesus Is Coming!

Revelation 22:6-21

Read toward end of Mark’s gospel, Jesus ending his time of earthly ministry, Mark 16:15And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.” Don’t have to know much about world missions to be convinced there’s more to do. Weekly reminder on back of bulletin – unreached people.

“We have an unfinished task, and it’s a huge task, and we desperately need the grace of our God to help us finish that task. We won’t finish it in our generation, but we can complete the race he’s given us. That’s our goal, that’s our desire.” Jamie Howell, GBC Taylors

Too often take tomorrow and next week and the following year for granted, even when read portions of God’s word like our text. Christ’s church by and large has lost sense of urgency that Jesus’ words should inspire in all of us. Clear grasp of what Jesus said, how much time has elapsed, how much still left to do should impel us to action.

Three times in closing portion of Revelation Lord Jesus himself declares “I am coming quickly!” Prefaced twice with imperative “Look!”, “Pay attention”, and once with strong affirmation “surely”, “truly”. Should be obvious Lord of the Church intends his people to get the point – he is coming! and without delay. Jesus willcome back just as soon as all pieces of picture are in place, every element of God’s eternal purpose for this age is complete.

A. be confident – he is coming quickly (6-7)

faithful and true – said by “God of the prophets”

is Lord Jesus himself who testifies that these things are true – even though angel served as intermediary, carries full weight of divine sanction

just as surely as ancient prophets proclaimed “thus says the Lord”, angel was communicating God’s word to John… w/o errors or omissions – a complete and accurate transmission of truth from God

all who read and hear message of Revelation can be absolutely certain are hearing directly from God what he intended to communicate… and that Jesus is coming back, quickly

confidence should stir us to obedience

if are confident Jesus meant what he said, we must be prepared for his coming at any moment – iow, doing what he told us to do

the only way he will find faith on the earth when he returns is if his people are showing love for him by obeying his commands

confidence should encourage us to evangelize

confidence in Christ’s return as God’s appointed judge should compel us to do our part to win the lost to Christ

our appointed task: be ready at all times to give an answer for the hope that is in us (1 Pet. 3:15), live so people will ask the question… showing by conduct we do have a hope

confidence should drive out fear

if truly believe Jesus is our King and he wins, should not fear what evil people and powers might try to do – remember promises to those who overcome

confidence in hope of eternal life should take away any fear related to this life – deny self, take up cross, follow Jesus regardless of cost, trust him to provide for all your needs

confident obedience brings God’s blessing

“blessed is he who keeps the words” – not responsible for results, are responsible for own conduct; no matter how our efforts turn out, God blesses us for obeying and trusting him for outcome

take to heart Jesus’ message for his church, take courage, press forward in work he has given you confident his purpose will be accomplished

B. worship God – he is coming quickly (8-12)

poor John, does it again – so overcome he worships wrong person

not long before this (Rev. 19:9-10) John did same thing… fell on face, trying to worship God’s messenger; he really knew better

powerful reminder in “anything goes” culture – it does matter who / what we worship: must be right God in right way

good John, does it again – so overcome he worships

he did set right example – response of one who gets the picture, who really grasps what John saw / communicated: must be worship

should not wait until see it in person – reading and understanding truths of Revelation should fill hearts and minds with love, thankfulness, desire to worship God… starting now

worship of God by disciples the goal of evangelism/missions

let’s put two statements of Jesus together, from Mark and Matthew – “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations”

#1 – Jesus’ followers must go into all the world; #2 – they must proclaim the Gospel to everyone; #3 – they must make disciples; #4 – true disciples / followers of Jesus are worshipers

in our evangelism, in our missions work, we must not stop with making converts – must make disciples, teaching them by word and example how to follow Christ

right worship of true God brings reward

when Jesus comes, will reward all who are his with eternal life in its fullness; will reward all others with eternal death in all its horror

those who worship true God with genuine faith have nothing to fear; the rest need to hear the truth and respond

C. Jesus guarantees it – he is coming quickly (13-17, 20a)

the Alpha and the Omega – the Beginning and the End – the First and the Last

the one who spoke it all into existence, who governs all things, and who is sovereignly directing all of human history toward his appointed end – absolutely nothing takes place outside God’s plan

the Lord Jesus sends his messenger to inform his church but he will come personally to gather his church, bring this age to an end and usher in next age

the Root and the Offspring of David

Jesus the only one who has authority to make such large promises – both root from which David came and descendant of David

who else but second person of Godhead be both David’s Lord and David’s son? – hard to wrap minds around, yet blessed truth

the Bright and Morning Star

not just the donkey that had it right, Balaam prophesied truly: “A Star shall come out of Jacob; A Scepter shall rise out of Israel” (Num. 24:17) – Jesus here claiming to John that he was fulfillment of that Messianic prophecy

just as surely as Jesus fulfilled every promise made about a deliverer, so surely will everything revealed in pages of Revelation come to pass… in his way, according to his perfect schedule

surely I am coming soon

didn’t just say in offhand way “I’ll see you sometime” – says emphatically “assuredly”, “truly” as if under oath “I am coming soon”… is absolutely certain

Jesus is coming at any moment – are you ready to meet him? Invitation open to all who will come – him who hears, thirsts, desires… come and partake of water of life

all who drink that water will be satisfied, forever with endless and abundant joys and blessings from Lord Jesus himself

D. final warning (18-19)

do not try to make it say more than it does

systems of interpretation – timelines

books written to describe different systems, novels and movies have their fan club, at times used as test to see if people can be friends, if churches can fellowship together

does your timeline match mine, does your system agree with theirs, what labels – stop it already!

truths expressed in Revelation given by the Lord of the Church to comfort and encourage and strengthen his people

those who use it to drive Christians apart ought to be ashamed; same for those who spread fear among believers by how they apply Revelation to current events

do not try to make it say less than it does

incredible blessing for those who read and heed

Rev 1:3Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written in it; for the time is near.

Rev. 16:15 “Behold, I am coming as a thief. Blessed is he who watches, and keeps his garments, lest he walk naked and they see his shame.”

Rev 22:7 “Behold, I am coming quickly! Blessed is he who keeps the words of the prophecy of this book.”

Rev 22:14 Blessed are those who do His commandments, that they may have the right to the tree of life, and may enter through the gates into the city.

to receive blessing, cannot be afraid of book, cannot avoid book, must spend time in the book… especially as return comes nearer – now not the time for apathy, laziness, inattention

must be diligent to live in such a way that we encourage others to become disciples of Jesus

fearsome consequences for those who reject and redefine

be careful to warn those who do so of danger they face, depend on God for the results

E. our response (20b-21)

“Come, Lord Jesus” – could borrow concept from Paul – torn between two things: desire for Lord Jesus to return, desire for lost to be converted

seems to our view is much work left to be done – Jesus may see it differently; however, we must be about Father’s business, carrying light of Gospel into dark places, praying God will use us to lead lost sinners to Christ

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