Important Final Words – Revelation 22:16-21

When people talk about the final book of the Bible, you will sometimes hear it called “Revelations.”  And yes, it contains revelations. And we often just singularly call it “Revelation.”  But the full name is “The Revelation of Jesus Christ.”

Written by the elderly Saint John on the island of Patmos, some people think of it as John’s revelation. What it records is John’s angelic vision of Jesus Christ in his final work in the consummation of time. And it is a wonderful book that ties together so much of the rest of Scripture, including particularly other prophetic books like Daniel and Ezekiel.

This writing has been subject to more extremes of interpretation than probably any other Scripture, as it is from a genre of literature known as “apocalyptic.” And our purpose today is not to detail any of that, but to look at the very final words of John – the concluding paragraphs of the Bible.

16 “I, Jesus, have sent my angel to give you this testimony for the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, and the bright Morning Star.”

The purpose of this revelatory account was to encourage the early churches, and by extension the church of Jesus Christ – the body and bride – down to our day as well, as this is God’s institution and work on the earth from the day of Pentecost until now, and until the rapture.

Jesus is seen in fulfillment of Scripture as the offspring of David – speaking of his rightful place as the King – the King of Kings.

Early in the morning, just before dawn, there is often the bright sight of Venus (or sometimes Mercury) in the eastern sky – a beautifully shining “star” that gives evidence that a new day is about to unfold.

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.

People think of the book of Revelation as all about curses and judgments, of which there is plenty of information. Yet it also contains an extraordinary amount of promises and blessings for those who will trust and follow the Lord. The Gospel is an open invitation and the gift is free indeed to all who will come and take of it. No judgment in the book has to fall upon anyone, if only they will come to God through Christ.

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.

These verses are of special interest for our Framework study. The scroll being talked about is in specific reference to the Book of Revelation, but the truth and concepts here would apply to all of Scripture. God’s Word is complete, it is finished, it is final, and it is perfectly sufficient. Adding to it by coming with a Bible in one hand and a bible in the other will put a person in line for the very destruction spoken within for those who do not accept and obey God’s revealed truth. And failing to acknowledge all of it – like accepting only those parts that are politically correct and make current cultural sense – also puts an individual on the other side of the line of truth.

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.

The Lord’s Prayer is nice, but honestly, this is the prayer for the Church – Come, Lord Jesus. Weighing the vision of the judgments of God alongside the magnificence of Christ … it all left John with the exclamation of “Lord, yes, just come soon!”

Do you feel that way? Are you looking forward to that? Have you lived and cumulatively suffered enough of the inevitable sadnesses of this life – physically and otherwise – to be very much ready for the Lord’s return?  I know this: it gets easier to have this very viewpoint the older one gets! With each passing day, this looks better to me than the day before … the week before … the year before. Yes, Christ’s coming would be a great thing!

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About Randy Buchman

I live in Western Maryland, and among my too many pursuits and hobbies, I regularly feed 3-4 hungry blogs. I played college baseball, coached championship cross country teams at Williamsport (MD) High School, and am the editor of a Baltimore/Maryland sports blog called "The Baltimore Wire." My main profession is as the lead pastor of a church in Hagerstown called Tri-State Fellowship. And I'm active in Civil War history and work/serve at Antietam National Battlefield with a Guides organization. Occasionally I sleep.

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