THE CURSE REVERSED
Sovereign Lord, today I ask for your guidance in my endeavors. Surround me, as always, with your presence and love.
Read REVELATION 22:1-9
22 Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, as clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb 2 down the middle of the great street of the city. On each side of the river stood the tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, yielding its fruit every month. And the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations. 3 No longer will there be any curse. The throne of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and his servants will serve him. 4 They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads. 5 There will be no more night. They will not need the light of a lamp or the light of the sun, for the Lord God will give them light. And they will reign for ever and ever.
John and the Angel
6 The angel said to me, “These words are trustworthy and true. The Lord, the God who inspires the prophets, sent his angel to show his servants the things that must soon take place.”
7 “Look, I am coming soon! Blessed is the one who keeps the words of the prophecy written in this scroll.”
8 I, John, am the one who heard and saw these things. And when I had heard and seen them, I fell down to worship at the feet of the angel who had been showing them to me. 9 But he said to me, “Don’t do that! I am a fellow servant with you and with your fellow prophets and with all who keep the words of this scroll. Worship God!”
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.
ReflectWhat do you long for? Bring those longings to the Lord. Listen to his invitation: ‘Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink’ (John 7:37).
Do you ever finish the day acutely aware that in the busyness of the day you have forgotten God? If so, then take heart from today’s passage. One day we will serve God face to face and serve him in creation as he originally intended (v 3).
The river coming from God’s throne is a picture of the presence of the Holy Spirit (see also John 7:37–39) giving abundant life to everyone and everything in the city (vs 1–3; Ezekiel 47:1–11). John’s readers knew about crop failure due to irregular water flows in their hot climate. This picture of continuous provision and year-round fruitfulness is the first sign of the reversal of the curse in Genesis (Genesis 3:17–19).
The next sign is the healing of relationships between peoples (v 2; see Genesis 3:16). The Holy Spirit will continually empower us to obey God’s rule in our communal life (v 2). The final sign is a fully restored relationship between God and humans (v 4). Today we may struggle to understand what God wants and struggle to obey. In his new creation he will be everything we long for and we will know how to serve him because he will guide us (v 5).
The Spirit has already begun his work. Pray Paul’s prayer in Ephesians 3:16–21 for yourself, your church fellowship, and the wider body of Christ.
Eternal God, all things come from you, and in you all things exist. Thank you that I live in your sight and by your grace.
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