I heard a loud shout from the throne, saying, “Look, God’s home is now among his people! He will live with them, and they will be his people. God himself will be with them. He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever.” And the one sitting on the throne said, “Look, I am making everything new!” And then he said to me, “Write this down, for what I tell you is trustworthy and true” …. So he took me in the Spirit to a great, high mountain, and he showed me the holy city, Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God. It shone with the glory of God and sparkled like a precious stone—like jasper as clear as crystal …. I saw no temple in the city, for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. And the city has no need of sun or moon, for the glory of God illuminates the city, and the Lamb is its light. Revelation 21:3-5, 10-11, 22-23
Then the angel showed me a river with the water of life, clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb. It flowed down the center of the main street. On each side of the river grew a tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, with a fresh crop each month. The leaves were used for medicine to heal the nations. No longer will there be a curse upon anything. For the throne of God and of the Lamb will be there, and his servants will worship him. And they will see his face, and his name will be written on their foreheads. And there will be no night there—no need for lamps or sun—for the Lord God will shine on them. And they will reign forever and ever. Revelation 22:1-5
Today's thoughts from today's verses:
Today’s Scriptures describe that place where everything is as it should be. They show us Heaven in all its perfection. In our first passage we see two distinguishing things that account for the perfection of Heaven. First, it is the home of God. God’s people are united with him there and his presence is the centerpiece of everything. Second, all the things that are not as they should be “are gone forever.” In Heaven there will be “no more death or sorrow or crying or pain.” Sin and all its effects are entirely absent and never to be known or felt again. God describes it this way, “Look, I am making everything new!” and then he says, “what I tell you is trustworthy and true.” No wonder we yearn for Heaven. We yearn for all it will be and for all it will not be. We yearn to be free from sin and all its effects that are so prominent here on earth.
But more than all this we yearn to be in the presence of the Lord. Our second passage describes our being with the Lord in this way, “For the throne of God and of the Lamb will be there, and his servants will worship him. And they will see his face, and his name will be written on their foreheads. And there will be no night there—no need for lamps or sun—for the Lord God will shine on them. And they will reign forever and ever.” We find great delight in all that we have to look forward to in the perfection of Heaven. However, the contrast between the perfection of our Heavenly home some day and the imperfection of our earthly home here and now must impact us properly.
We must not let the contrast between Heaven and earth immobilize us and keep us from our mission of reaching the world. Tragically, many Christians slip into a pattern where they regularly lament having to be in the world and commiserate with others about the terrible world they live in. Often they are offended by the lives of people around them and readily express their disdain. The compound effect is a lost world that feels they are hated by those who profess to be found. This is not the impact that the perfection of our future Heavenly home should have on God’s people. Our glorious future should serve to motivate us to love the world fully so that others are reached and can join us in looking forward to the perfection of Heaven someday.
Today's prayer response from today's thoughts:
Lord, thank you for the glorious future of the perfection of Heaven that awaits me. Keep from selfishly wanting to be there now without regard for all those who still need to be reached. Transform me into a person who genuinely loves the world and those who need to be reached. Help me to yearn for the salvation of souls as much as I yearn for the perfection of Heaven. Use me fully now for the advancement of your kingdom. Amen!
Posted on Wed, July 6, 2016
by Ken Hart