This Week’s Passage and Memory Verse (in red): 1 Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. 2 I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. 3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. 4 He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” 5 He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” 6 He said to me: “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To him who is thirsty I will give to drink without cost from the spring of the water of life. 7 He who overcomes will inherit all this, and I will be his God and he will be my son. 8 But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars—their place will be in the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death.”
Here’s a word that you may or may not be familiar with: eschatology. It is the branch of theology that deals with the end times. The passage this week is an eschatological passage. Perhaps you recall the book by Steven Covey The 7 Habits of Highly Successful People. Habit #2 stated this – “Begin with the end in mind.” I think that one of the reasons why we have the Book of Revelation is so that we have a clear picture of what the end will be. As believers we need to constantly be reminded that when all is said and done we will be on the side that wins. We will be in a place that is unimaginably beautiful. We will enjoy Life the way that it was designed to be enjoyed. We will be with the One who gave His life for us. We will experience joy unspeakable.
So as we endure the present life we live with the end in mind. Why?
1) Life is often hard – we need the assurance that it will get better. This is what hope is all about. People without hope live lives of quiet (and sometimes overtly loud) desperation. Desperate people are dangerous people.
2) The end for believers should motivate us to persevere in the present as we seek to live holy lives and as we strive to demonstrate to a dying world what the kingdom of God is like.
3) The reality of Heaven and Hell is rooted deep into people’s souls. People intuitively believe that in the end justice will be done. Therefore eschatology is a powerful tool for evangelism.
The one word in this passage that captures my attention is in verse 7. “Overcomes”. It comes from the Greek word that sounds like Nike. It means to gain the victory. “He who gains the victory will inherit all this.” The word overcome is an important word in the The Revelation (see chapters 2-3 especially). Believers are to be overcomers. No matter what life in this world throws at us we have what it takes to overcome because we know the One who has overcome everything. Think about what Jesus endured in His life: jealousy, prejudice, hatred, poverty, physical suffering, rejection, betrayal, death. He endured and He was an overcomer. And now through the Holy Spirit He indwells us to strengthen us and provide for us what we need to overcome anything that comes our way.
That’s why we live with the end in mind – because we know that one day He will make all things new, and as overcomers we will be there to enjoy every bit of it. So whatever you are going through right now, never forget that as a believer you are an overcomer!
I’m just sayin’!
Next Week’s Passage: 1 Thessalonians 5:16-24
Next Week’s Memory Verse: 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
3 thoughts on “Pondering the Passages: Revelation 21:1-8”
Thank you Jesus and thank you Shay for delivering this message so timely.
Did you hide outside my window as I had my quiet time with the Lord this morning? Jesus reminded me this morning that HE is my intersessor, my GREAT HIGH PRIEST! Even though Satan desired to sift Peter like wheat Jesus told him He had prayed for him and that WWWHHHEEENNN you get through this trial to strenthen the brothers. I covet the prayers of my brothers and sisters in Christ and need them! But sometimes I think I forget that my Savior is my constant High Priest who does not sleep or slumber! What a beautiful picture in Acts when Stephen is stoned and looked to heaven.
He looked to heaven and saw Jesus STANDING!!! MY Savior who SITS at the right hand of the Father
was standing and in the midst of Stephens persecution allowed Him to see his HOPE in Christ Jesus!
I thank my Lord that in the midst of trials, disappointments and life that I know the ONE who said “IT IS FINISHED”
I am also grateful that in Philippians 1:6 He promised … “He who has begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Christ Jesus”
HE is the ALPHA and OMEGA, how humbling to know that I am HIS!
Shay the timing of this passage was perfect for me this morning but isn’t that just like my LORD. He does all things well!!!!!!
This passage reminds me of the story Brother Don told about the little old lady who wanted to be buried with a fork. She would save her fork after dinner because she knew the dessert was next. She wanted to be buried with a fork because she knew the Best Was Yet To Come!!