LET YOUR KINGDOM COME
Mighty God, I speak words of praise, adoration, and thanksgiving to you. I rejoice before you.
Read REVELATION 11
The Two Witnesses
11 I was given a reed like a measuring rod and was told, “Go and measure the temple of God and the altar, with its worshipers. 2 But exclude the outer court; do not measure it, because it has been given to the Gentiles. They will trample on the holy city for 42 months. 3 And I will appoint my two witnesses, and they will prophesy for 1,260 days, clothed in sackcloth.” 4 They are “the two olive trees” and the two lampstands, and “they stand before the Lord of the earth.”[a] 5 If anyone tries to harm them, fire comes from their mouths and devours their enemies. This is how anyone who wants to harm them must die. 6 They have power to shut up the heavens so that it will not rain during the time they are prophesying; and they have power to turn the waters into blood and to strike the earth with every kind of plague as often as they want.
7 Now when they have finished their testimony, the beast that comes up from the Abyss will attack them, and overpower and kill them. 8 Their bodies will lie in the public square of the great city—which is figuratively called Sodom and Egypt—where also their Lord was crucified. 9 For three and a half days some from every people, tribe, language and nation will gaze on their bodies and refuse them burial. 10 The inhabitants of the earth will gloat over them and will celebrate by sending each other gifts, because these two prophets had tormented those who live on the earth.
11 But after the three and a half days the breath[b] of life from God entered them, and they stood on their feet, and terror struck those who saw them. 12 Then they heard a loud voice from heaven saying to them, “Come up here.” And they went up to heaven in a cloud, while their enemies looked on.
13 At that very hour there was a severe earthquake and a tenth of the city collapsed. Seven thousand people were killed in the earthquake, and the survivors were terrified and gave glory to the God of heaven.
14 The second woe has passed; the third woe is coming soon.
The Seventh Trumpet
15 The seventh angel sounded his trumpet, and there were loud voices in heaven, which said:
“The kingdom of the world has become
the kingdom of our Lord and of his Messiah,
and he will reign for ever and ever.”
16 And the twenty-four elders, who were seated on their thrones before God, fell on their faces and worshiped God, 17 saying:
“We give thanks to you, Lord God Almighty,
the One who is and who was,
because you have taken your great power
and have begun to reign.
18 The nations were angry,
and your wrath has come.
The time has come for judging the dead,
and for rewarding your servants the prophets
and your people who revere your name,
both great and small—
and for destroying those who destroy the earth.”
19 Then God’s temple in heaven was opened, and within his temple was seen the ark of his covenant. And there came flashes of lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder, an earthquake and a severe hailstorm.
New International Version (NIV)Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
ReflectWhen you pray ‘your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven’ (Matthew 6:10), what do you expect to happen as a result?
I’m sure you have prayed ‘your kingdom come’ many times. In today’s reading, we see that prayer, faithfully repeated by Christians throughout history, finally answered. God’s kingdom comes (v 15) and his will alone is done on this earth, as it is in heaven (v 16). That goal of history should inspire us through the dark days of ‘this present age’. In language and imagery, again drawn from the Old Testament, the first part of our reading describes the faithful witness of the church (vs 3–6) through a period of opposition and even apparent defeat (vs 7–10): apparent, for we serve a God who raises the dead (vs 11,12)!
It is so easy to lose heart, to believe that we Christians form a small, insignificant minority, and even sometimes, perhaps, to wonder if God is still in charge at all. This final reading in our series should encourage us that, even though we might indeed be a small minority, we are not insignificant, for our witness to the truth and our faithfulness to our Lord will one day be vindicated (v 18).
Christians are to live today, in the here and now, as citizens of God’s coming kingdom. Our lives are to be a signpost and foretaste of a different world, where Jesus is fully in charge. What difference will that make to those around you today?
Father God, I want to be a signpost for you, pointing those around me to you as Savior and Lord. Strengthen and empower my witness.
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