Seventh Sunday of Easter (May 8, 2016)
- First reading
- Second reading
Revelation 22:12-14 | New Living Translation (NLT)
“Look, I am coming soon, bringing my reward with me to repay all people according to their deeds. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.”
Blessed are those who wash their robes. They will be permitted to enter through the gates of the city and eat the fruit from the tree of life.
“I, Jesus, have sent my angel to give you this message for the churches. I am both the source of David and the heir to his throne. I am the bright morning star.”
The Spirit and the bride say, “Come.” Let anyone who hears this say, “Come.” Let anyone who is thirsty come. Let anyone who desires drink freely from the water of life.
He who is the faithful witness to all these things says, “Yes, I am coming soon!”
Amen! Come, Lord Jesus!
May the grace of the Lord Jesus be with God’s holy people.
“Look, I am coming soon!” “Yes, I am coming soon!” Within several verses these phrases are repeated. We are at the end of the book. This is Jesus’ final message in the book of Revlation. We are often told as story tellers or musicians – make the opening memorable and make the ending memorable.
I find it interesting that instead of preaching from this passage on Sunday, most preachers, especially those here in the states will be preaching on mothers – not that there is anything wrong with mothers. Here we have some of the most important words to the church – the promise of Christ’s return.
Jesus offers an invitation with this promise:
The spirit and the bride say “Come.” Let anyone who hears this “Come.” This is so crucial – the invitation to receive Christ is universal. In Acts, we have the story of Paul and Silas being imprisoned for casting out demons. As a result the jailer there becomes a believer. Paul even declares that all who call upon the name of the Lord will be saved. We often like to think we are in an exclusive club. We are told “If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Jesus from the dead, you will be saved.” It’s as simple as that. Jesus died for all, so that all may — MAY – be saved. I didn’t say all will be saved, but that all may be saved. God does not desire that anyone should perish, but there will be those who reject the grace and mercy of the cross. Jesus declares here in Revelation that anyone who is thirsty should come and drink from the water of life.
We are told that those who wash their robes will be blessed. This signifies those who have repented of their sins – they will be permitted to enter through the gates of life. Finally, we have access to the tree of life – this was the tree that was forbidden – the tree that was in the Garden of Eden – so we discover that Paradise – the Garden of Eden – a place where sin and brokenness does not exist is restored.
I would encourage you – if you do not know this Jesus – to explore – Jesus desires to give us life and to give us life to the very full. It seems like this has come up over and over during the last few months. We were not given an inheritance that will rust or fade but an eternal inheritance in heaven – through the blood of Jesus Christ.
Jesus is coming soon – and all God’s people cried, “Maranatha!”