WARNINGS AND PROMISES
With You, Lord, “a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day” (2 Peter 3:8). Thank You, God, for Your patience.
Read Revelation 22:1–21
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!”
10 Then he told me, “Do not seal up the words of the prophecy of this scroll, because the time is near. 11 Let the one who does wrong continue to do wrong; let the vile person continue to be vile; let the one who does right continue to do right; and let the holy person continue to be holy.”
Epilogue: Invitation and Warning
12 “Look, I am coming soon! My reward is with me, and I will give to each person according to what they have done. 13 I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.
14 “Blessed are those who wash their robes, that they may have the right to the tree of life and may go through the gates into the city. 15 Outside are the dogs, those who practice magic arts, the sexually immoral, the murderers, the idolaters and everyone who loves and practices falsehood.
16 “I, Jesus, have sent my angel to give you[a] this testimony for the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, and the bright Morning Star.”
17 The Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let the one who hears say, “Come!” Let the one who is thirsty come; and let the one who wishes take the free gift of the water of life.
18 I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this scroll: If anyone adds anything to them, God will add to that person the plagues described in this scroll. 19 And if anyone takes words away from this scroll of prophecy, God will take away from that person any share in the tree of life and in the Holy City, which are described in this scroll.
20 He who testifies to these things says, “Yes, I am coming soon.”
Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.
21 The grace of the Lord Jesus be with God’s people. Amen.
a Revelation 22:16 The Greek is plural.
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.
ReflectHas the Lord impressed any warnings on your heart about getting ready for eternal life?
“You have made us for yourself, and our hearts are restless until they rest in you” (Augustine, Confessions, Book 1:1). God made us for full access to “the tree of life” (Genesis 2:9). In the New Jerusalem that access is restored, with life, healing and light (1, 2, 5). We will walk with God again “in the cool of the day” (Genesis 3:8) as we see him face to face (4; Exodus 24:9–11; John 1:18). This is the incredible promise of the gospel. Pondering these things and looking forward to that day!
Yet let’s not ignore the warnings. The first is that sin destroys our vital connection to God (Genesis 3:24). The free gift of life is an offer to all who would receive it (17). But to reject it is death (15). The other warns us not to tamper with the words of this book (18,19). No one would claim Revelation is an easy book! But its vision of the plan of the “Alpha and the Omega” (13), the “bright Morning Star” (16) is fundamental to our understanding of the world.
We long not only to find our own hearts’ rest in God, but for others to receive his healing also. Let’s pray, and let’s say with the Spirit and the church universal: Come! Drink at the fountain of eternal life (17)!
Are you ready to live life eternal? If you are prepared, how can you help someone else get prepared today? Ask God to give you an opportunity to share the way of eternal life with someone today.
Come, Lord Jesus!
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