Several years ago, while watching a tv show based on “real life” emergency room experiences, I heard a phrase used by a doctor that’s worth remembering and applying to the study of the Bible’s prophetic language and imagery: Continue reading
Here’s a link to the latest PDF issue of the Christian Worker.
Here are the topics that you will find:
- How to do a Topical Study (Dewayne Bryant)
- Words of Wisdom for Better Bible Study (Cody Westbrook)
- How to do a Word Study (Kevin Cauley)
- How to Study a Book of the Bible (Richard Rutledle)
- How to do a Character Study (Randy Robinson)
- How to Study Apocalyptic Literature (Sam Dilbeck)
- Terms and Tools (John Haffner)
Christian Worker is an edification effort of the Southwest church of Christ in Austin, Texas.
You can subscribe to the email version of the Christian Worker paper by clicking on the publications link on their website and then following the given instructions…or by clicking on the link provided here in The Fellowship Room under the “Friends” category to your right.
Copyright © 2016 Southwest church of Christ, All rights reserved.
When most people hear the phrase “the revelation of Jesus Christ”, they think about unsealed scrolls, trumpets of judgment, bowls of wrath and images that conjure up bone-chilling fear.
When a Christian hears the phrase “the revelation of Jesus Christ”, the Spirit of God wants us to think about the word…grace.
This may be hard to imagine when you consider the title and the contents of the New Testament’s last book, but if we understand (and live out) the principles of the preceding books of God’s covenant, then we will be less than surprised at what Jesus brings with him at his revelation – we’ll rejoice.
“Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;” (1 Peter 1:13)
I was recently afforded the opportunity to perform in the Murfreesboro Symphony Chorus at a concert with the Murfreesboro Symphony Orchestra. I had been to orchestral performances many times before, and while they can be very exciting, they can also be a bit tiresome during some passages. If you’re not careful, you’ll find yourself waking up to the applause of the audience at the end of a piece. This one, however–almost every moment of it–was different.
Perhaps it was the acoustics–the reverberation in the venue; perhaps it was the one or two thousand faces focused in on the stage; perhaps it was being able to see the conductor’s face for once instead of his back; perhaps it was getting to be part of a group of incredible singers to which I felt inferior; perhaps it was the beauty of the music, much of which was written by one of the best-known composers of our time. As I sang with the choir, or simply sat and listened as the orchestra played alone, excitement flowed through me like electricity during almost the entire concert. Every solo, every climax, every quiet passage, every pause created a sensation I could feel, not only in my mind and heart, but in my body. Here was a group of some of the best musicians (and me) performing excellent music by one of the most well-regarded modern composers on some of the finest instruments in a superb venue, led by one of the most talented conductors in our region. Every person there (on stage and in the audience) was focused on one thing–the music. Being in the midst of the ensemble provided for one of the most intense musical experiences I’ve ever had.
Revelation 14, 15, and 19 have descriptions of multitudes of people and angels singing praise to God. I’m afraid sometimes we think of that image and liken it to our local congregational singing, which–like any other thing we do on a regular basis–can often seem less than thrilling. Continue reading
I believe I’ve mentioned before that on 5th Sundays at Keltonburg we have a song and scripture service in the evenings. It consists of a topic/theme with the reading of scriptures pertaining to the theme and the singing of songs that go along with the scriptures that are read. The theme that we used yesterday was: Notes from Revelation. It was a play on the word “notes” to include the singing as much as the scripture when it comes to reminding us about the overall theme of the book.
Here’s the outline in case you’re interested:
- Revelation 1:10-20 / God Holds the Future in His Hands
- Revelation 4:1-11 / Holy, Holy, Holy
- Revelation 5:5-14 / Worthy Art Thou
- Revelation 7:9-17 / Beautiful
- Revelation 11:15-19 / The Kingdom is Spreading
- Revelation 12:1-11 / Hide Me, O My Savior, Hide Me
- Revelation 14:1-7 / We’re Marching to Zion
- Revelation 20:7-15 / There’s a Great Day Coming
- Revelation 22:1-5, 12-17 / There’s a Fountain Free
- Paradise Valley
It’s a pretty good outline as far as covering 22 chapters with 9 scripture readings and 10 songs goes, but a person can definitely add to it or take away from it as they see fit…the outline that is, but not the book (Revelation 22:18-19).
What does this say, if anything, about the challenges that affect the church today?
Those who crucified Jesus were probably certain they had prevented him from taking the kingdom of Israel for himself.
They stood before the cross mocking Jesus and saying, “He saved others; himself he cannot save. If he be the King of Israel, let him come down from the cross, and we will believe him. He trusted in God; let him deliver him now, if he will have him: for he said, I am the Son of God,” (Matthew 27:42-43).
Of course, the grave could not hold the Christ of God and he was resurrected from the dead. Christ is indeed “King of Kings and Lord of Lords,” as the prophets said. He and his purposes cannot be thwarted.
And, when Daniel wrote, “And to him was given dominion and glory and a kingdom, that all peoples, nations, and languages should serve him; his dominion is an ever-lasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom one that shall not be destroyed,” (Daniel 7:14) it came true.
The kingdom of God, also known as the church Jesus built (Matthew 16:18), can never be destroyed. It can be persecuted; it can be economically pressed, just as it was when John wrote the book of Revelation. It cannot, however, be destroyed because God’s plans and promises are always true. God’s promises always stand the test of time and truth.
The symbols of the woman with the crown of stars and the woman in the desert represent the continuing aspect of God’s rule in the world. How different are the commandments of God between the two covenants? Jesus repeated all but one of the Ten Commandments. Certainly the covenants are different, but God’s church has been referred to as the Israel of God by the Apostle Paul (Galatians 6:16).
The woman survives. God’s kingdom cannot be destroyed by Rome or any other entity. Meaning its members will always be blessed with a refuge, provided they remain faithful.
The scene that has always captured my attention is Revelation chapter 4 and the throne room scene.
This scene is very similar to the one in Isaiah 6, because it is basically the same picture. It features four living creatures that are absolutely amazing, 24 elders and they sing a “new song” to God and the lamb saying, “Worthy are you to take the scroll and to open its seals, for you were slain, and by your blood you ransomed the people of God,” (Revelation 4:9 ESV).
This is the song I want to sing to God and the lamb one day. How amazing it is that he shed his blood and saved this sinner from death so that one day I could stand or kneel in his presence and sing his praises.
Then to hear the voices of the elders, the creatures and myriads of myriads of thousands upon thousands of angels singing, “Worthy is the lamb that was slain to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!”
I am not worthy, as a sinner, to see or hear those scenes. Yet, by the grace of God, I will sing praises to him and to the lamb myself one day! God hasten that day!
Describe a scene — for most of them are verbal paintings, of a sort — from the book of Revelation and tell why that scene captures your attention. I know Daniel taught out of this book Wednesday, so at least one person ought to have something to say.
Sunday is always a busy day for our family: two congregations, lunch with brethren, almost always, travel on the Interstate. We trust yours will be blessed today.
What’s happening in the congregations in your area, or yours even?