Grace Baptist Church
12-8-2019 Main Serivce
  • Light of the Stable
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        Men's & Ladies' Bible Studies

        September 12, 2019 - 10:00 AM - 10:00 AM
      • Revelation 19.6-7ESV

      • Revelation 19.8-9ESV

  • The Holly and the Ivy
  • Angels We Have Heard on High
  • O Come, All Ye Faithful
      • Revelation 19:6ESV

      • Revelation 19:6–10ESV

  • Introduction:
    Transition:
    Revelation The Text in Context

    Following Babylon’s destruction (17:1–19:5), we come to the full and final victory of God over the forces of evil (19:6–20:15). God’s victory begins with the announcement that it is time for the wedding of the Lamb (19:6–10), an announcement that includes the great multitude celebrating the beginning of God’s eternal reign (19:6–8) and a blessing on those who are invited to the Lamb’s wedding feast (19:9). The unit concludes with the angel reminding John to worship God alone, since God (by his Spirit) is the source of the revelation about Jesus (19:10). The announcement of 19:6–10 is immediately followed by the return of Christ for his bride in 19:11–16 and a series of visions showing God’s final judgment of his enemies in 19:17–20:15.

    Following Babylon’s destruction (17:1–19:5), we come to the full and final victory of God over the forces of evil (19:6–20:15). God’s victory begins with the announcement that it is time for the wedding of the Lamb (19:6–10), an announcement that includes the great multitude celebrating the beginning of God’s eternal reign (19:6–8) and a blessing on those who are invited to the Lamb’s wedding feast (v.9). This announcement—which is our passage this morning—is immediately followed by the return of Christ for his bride in 19:11–16 and a series of visions showing God’s final judgment of his enemies in 19:17–20:15.
    Scripture Reading:
    Revelation 19:6–10 ESV
    6 Then I heard what seemed to be the voice of a great multitude, like the roar of many waters and like the sound of mighty peals of thunder, crying out, “Hallelujah! For the Lord our God the Almighty reigns. 7 Let us rejoice and exult and give him the glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and his Bride has made herself ready; 8 it was granted her to clothe herself with fine linen, bright and pure”— for the fine linen is the righteous deeds of the saints. 9 And the angel said to me, “Write this: Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb.” And he said to me, “These are the true words of God.” 10 Then I fell down at his feet to worship him, but he said to me, “You must not do that! I am a fellow servant with you and your brothers who hold to the testimony of Jesus. Worship God.” For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.
    Revelation Theological Insights

    Of all the images God could have used to describe the eternal state, why a wedding supper? It’s because throughout Scripture the marriage metaphor depicts God’s relationship with his people like no other (e.g., Hos. 2:16, 19–20; Isa. 54:5–7; Jer. 2:2; Matt. 25:1–13). The prophets often speak of Israel as the wife of Yahweh (Isa. 49:18; 54:5–6; 62:5; Jer. 2:2; Ezek. 16:15–63; Hos. 2:14–23). Negatively, Israel’s unfaithfulness is compared to the adultery of an unfaithful wife (Jer. 3:20; Ezek. 16:15–63; Hos. 2:1–13; 4:12, 15). Yet God remains faithful and plans to restore his bride under the new covenant (e.g., Isa. 62:1–5; Ezek. 16:60–63; Hos. 2:16–20). It makes sense that Jesus portrays himself as the bridegroom (Mark 2:19–20; John 3:29) and the church as the bride of Christ (2 Cor. 11:2; Eph. 5:25–33; Rev. 19:7; 21:2, 9; 22:17). The language of bride and bridegroom communicates God’s perfect love for his people and anticipates our joyous, intimate experience of the personal presence of God in the new creation. The marriage metaphor also conveys deep emotional security and assurance for Christians currently suffering persecution and abuse under evil human rulers.

    Of all the images YHWH could have used to describe the eternal state, why a wedding supper? It’s because throughout Scripture the marriage metaphor depicts God’s relationship with his people like no other image. The OT prophets often speak of Israel as the wife of YHWH. Negatively, Israel’s unfaithfulness is compared to the adultery of an unfaithful wife. Yet God remains faithful still and plans to restore his bride under the new covenant. It makes sense then when Jesus portrays himself as the bridegroom in the Gospels (; ) and the church as the bride of Christ (; ; ; , ; ). The language of bride and bridegroom communicates God’s perfect love for his people and anticipates our joyous, intimate experience of the personal presence of God in the new creation. The marriage metaphor also conveys deep emotional security and assurance for Christians currently suffering persecution and abuse under evil human rulers.
    Revelation Teaching the Text

    The Wedding Supper of the Lamb

    The wedding supper of the Lamb (also called the “messianic wedding banquet”) is the future fellowship celebration of God with his people in the new creation. As the divine husband, God promised his bride a lavish banquet celebrating his defeat of her enemies and his abundant provision. A key Old Testament passage is Isaiah 25:6–9, which describes the rich feast God will provide. Jesus also speaks of a wedding banquet in his consummated kingdom (e.g., Matt. 8:11; 22:1–14; 25:1–13; Luke 13:29; 14:16–24). Even the promise Jesus makes to his disciples at the Last Supper assumes the coming reunion banquet: “I will not drink from this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom” (Matt. 26:29). The wedding supper of the Lamb in Revelation 19:9 likely points forward to the more complete description of the new heaven and new earth in Revelation 21–22. This eternal celebration of God’s people stands in contrast to the “great supper of God,” where the birds consume the dead bodies of God’s enemies (19:17–18, 21; Ezek. 39:17–20). Overall, the image of a wedding supper conveys the personal, intimate, joyous time of fellowship that God is preparing for his people.

    So we have the why, but what is it?

    The Wedding Supper of the Lamb

    What is it?
    The wedding supper of the Lamb (also called the “messianic wedding banquet”) is the future fellowship celebration of God with his people in the new creation. As the divine husband, God promised his bride a lavish banquet celebrating his defeat of her enemies and his abundant provision. A key Old Testament passage is , which describes the rich feast God will provide. Jesus also speaks though the Gospels of a wedding banquet in his consummated kingdom. Even the promise Jesus makes to his disciples at the Last Supper assumes the coming reunion banquet: ().
    Matthew 26:29 ESV
    I tell you I will not drink again of this fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.”
    The wedding supper of the Lamb in points forward to the more complete description of the new heaven and new earth in chapters 21–22. This eternal celebration of God’s people stands in contrast to the “great supper of God,” where the birds consume the dead bodies of God’s enemies (19:17–18, 21; ).
    Transition:
    Overall, the image of a wedding supper conveys the personal, intimate, joyous time of fellowship that God is preparing for his people. So let’s look together at what John is seeing

    I. The great multitude sings of the Bride & Groom 19:6–8)

    The roar of the great multitude in 19:1 praising Yahweh (“Hallelujah”) for judging the wicked city now expands to an even louder and deeper roar of praise to God as he begins his universal reign
    The great multitude sings the hallelujah chorus (19:6–8)
    Revelation 19:6 ESV
    Then I heard what seemed to be the voice of a great multitude, like the roar of many waters and like the sound of mighty peals of thunder, crying out, “Hallelujah! For the Lord our God the Almighty reigns.
    19:6 Then I heard what sounded like a great multitude, like the roar of rushing waters and like loud peals of thunder, shouting: “Hallelujah! For our Lord God Almighty reigns.” The roar of the great multitude in 19:1 praising Yahweh (“Hallelujah”) for judging the wicked city now expands to an even louder and deeper roar of praise to God as he begins his universal reign (cf. 1:15; 14:2–3; cf. 7:9–17; ; ; ).1 God’s sovereign reign will become a visible reality at the end of the age, a theme already proclaimed in 11:15: “The seventh angel sounded his trumpet, and there were loud voices in heaven, which said: ‘The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Messiah, and he will reign for ever and ever.’ ” The praise of “our Lord God Almighty” (cf. 1:8; 4:8; 11:17; 15:3; 16:7, 14; 19:6, 15; 21:22) emphasizes the personal (“our”) and powerful nature of God in contrast to the empty boasts of tyrannical rulers such as Domitian, who demanded the title “Our Lord and God” (Suetonius, Domitian 13).
    God’s sovereign reign will become a visible reality at the end of the age, a theme already proclaimed in 11:15: “The seventh angel sounded his trumpet, and there were loud voices in heaven, which said: ‘The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Messiah, and he will reign for ever and ever.’ ” The praise of “our Lord God Almighty” emphasizes the personal (“our”) and powerful nature of God in contrast to the empty boasts of tyrannical rulers such as Domitian, who demanded the title “Our Lord and God”.
    God’s sovereign reign will become a visible reality at the end of the age, a theme already proclaimed in 11:15: “The seventh angel sounded his trumpet, and there were loud voices in heaven, which said: ‘The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Messiah, and he will reign for ever and ever.’ ” The praise of “our Lord God Almighty” emphasizes the personal (“our”) and powerful nature of God in contrast to the empty boasts of tyrannical rulers such as Domitian, who demanded the title “Our Lord and God”.
    Illustration:
    Believers carry a deep longing for God to establish his universal reign
    Take food for example: Pick up a menu from your favorite local restaurant. Open the menu and describe a few of the dishes you love best. Kind of makes your mouth water, doesn’t it? Your stomach begins to rumble, and you are ready to try it. Sometimes, anticipation is one of the best parts of a good meal. As believers, we can cultivate hunger for the things of God. Throughout Scripture, especially here in Revelation, we are given vivid pictures of life in the kingdom. We’re called to cultivate a hunger for this day.
    Revelation 19:7 ESV
    Let us rejoice and exult and give him the glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and his Bride has made herself ready;
    God’s people are called to rejoice, be glad, and give God glory because of the arrival of the Lamb’s wedding, a centerpiece of the universal reign of God. In keeping with Jewish wedding customs, the time of betrothal was followed by the wedding proper.
    Illustration:
    (Interestingly, the verb “ready/prepare” is used seven times in Revelation to emphasize how God is working out his sovereign plan: chapters 8; 9; 12; 16; here in 19; and finally 21:2.)
    Believers carry a deep longing for God to establish his universal reign
    Food: Pick up a menu from your favorite local restaurant. Open the menu and describe a few of the dishes you love best. Kind of makes your mouth water, doesn’t it? Your stomach begins to rumble, and you are ready to try it. Sometimes, anticipation is one of the best parts of a good meal. As believers, we can cultivate hunger for the things of God. Throughout Scripture, especially here in Revelation, we are given vivid pictures of life in the kingdom. We’re called to cultivate a hunger for this day.
    In our day, many people have distorted what marriage is, understanding it as a legal coupling of convenience that allows people to qualify for certain benefits or formalize an already-existing living arrangement. It’s no wonder that many young people are delaying marriage or dispensing with it altogether. Yet the Bible portrays a much fuller picture of marriage—a union of deep and enduring intimacy, a relationship that involves lifelong commitment lived out in faithfulness and filled with mutual joy, self-giving love, sacrificial service, and exclusive devotion. It is this deeper reality that begins to provide an image of the relationship between Christ and the church.
    Rev
    Revelation 19:8 ESV
    it was granted her to clothe herself with fine linen, bright and pure”— for the fine linen is the righteous deeds of the saints.
    Fine linen stands for the righteous acts of God’s holy people. On her wedding day, the Jewish bride would prepare herself by bathing, anointing, and being clothed with special garments (cf. ). The bridegroom and his entourage would then process to the bride’s home and escort her back to his home for the consummation of the marriage and the wedding feast (). It is also Jewish custom that the groom prepares the future home for the future family—either he would have to find a home for them to live in or build the house himself.
    19:7–8 “Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory! For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready. Fine linen, bright and clean, was given her to wear.” (Fine linen stands for the righteous acts of God’s holy people.) God’s people are called to rejoice, be glad, and give God glory because of the arrival of the Lamb’s wedding, a centerpiece of the universal reign of God. In keeping with Jewish wedding customs, the time of betrothal was followed by the wedding proper. On her wedding day the bride would prepare herself by bathing, anointing, and being clothed with special garments (cf. ). (Interestingly, the verb “prepare” is used seven times in Revelation to emphasize how God is working out his sovereign plan: 8:6; 9:7, 15; 12:6; 16:12; 19:7; 21:2.) The bridegroom and his entourage would then process to the bride’s home and escort her back to his home for the consummation of the marriage and the wedding feast (). The “bride” of Christ is identified as “God’s holy people” or the saints (14:4; 21:2, 9; 22:17; ). They have prepared themselves by holding to the testimony of Jesus and faithfully enduring in obedience to God’s commands. God has graciously given (another divine passive: edothē) them the privilege of wearing special wedding garments—“fine linen, bright and clean.” These brilliantly white garments (cf. 3:4; 6:11; 7:9, 13–14; 19:14; ) stand in contrast to the purple and scarlet linen worn by the harlot (17:4; 18:12, 16). Beale argues persuasively that the fine linen represents both the righteous acts performed by God’s people (subjective genitive) and God’s righteous acts presented to them (objective genitive) through judging their oppressors.2 Even here, the righteous acts done by the saints come as a result of their redemption by Christ (cf. 22:11; ; ).
    The “bride” of Christ is identified as “God’s holy people” or the saints (14:4; 21:2, 9; 22:17; ). They have prepared themselves by holding to the testimony of Jesus and faithfully enduring in obedience to God’s commands. God has graciously given them the privilege of wearing special wedding garments—“fine linen, bright and clean.” These brilliantly white garments stand in contrast to the purple and scarlet linen worn by the harlot in the previous chapters. I personally think that the fine linen represents both the righteous acts performed by God’s people (subjective genitive) and God’s righteous acts presented to them (objective genitive) through YHWH judging their oppressors. Even here in context, the righteous acts done by the saints come as a result of their redemption by Christ.
    Marriage is an important metaphor to describe God’s relationship with his people
    In our day, many people have distorted what marriage is, understanding it as a legal coupling of convenience that allows people to qualify for certain benefits or formalize an already-existing living arrangement. It’s no wonder that many young people are delaying marriage or dispensing with it altogether. Yet the Bible portrays a much fuller picture of marriage—a union of deep and enduring intimacy, a relationship that involves lifelong commitment lived out in faithfulness and filled with mutual joy, self-giving love, sacrificial service, and exclusive devotion. It is this deeper reality that begins to provide an image of the relationship between Christ and the church.
    Transition:
    So what can make this wedding song of praise even more beautiful? How about a blessing?

    II. The angel commands a beatitude in behalf of the Marriage (19:9)

    This fourth beatitude pronounces a blessing on those invited to the Lamb’s messianic banquet (cf. 1:3; 14:13; 16:15; 20:6; 22:7, 14).
    The angel commands John to write a beatitude (19:9)
    Revelation 19:9 ESV
    And the angel said to me, “Write this: Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb.” And he said to me, “These are the true words of God.”
    Revelation Interpretive Insights

    19:6 Then I heard what sounded like a great multitude, like the roar of rushing waters and like loud peals of thunder, shouting: “Hallelujah! For our Lord God Almighty reigns.” The roar of the great multitude in 19:1 praising Yahweh (“Hallelujah”) for judging the wicked city now expands to an even louder and deeper roar of praise to God as he begins his universal reign (cf. 1:15; 14:2–3; cf. 7:9–17; Dan. 10:6; Ezek. 1:24; 43:2).1 God’s sovereign reign will become a visible reality at the end of the age, a theme already proclaimed in 11:15: “The seventh angel sounded his trumpet, and there were loud voices in heaven, which said: ‘The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Messiah, and he will reign for ever and ever.’ ” The praise of “our Lord God Almighty” (cf. 1:8; 4:8; 11:17; 15:3; 16:7, 14; 19:6, 15; 21:22) emphasizes the personal (“our”) and powerful nature of God in contrast to the empty boasts of tyrannical rulers such as Domitian, who demanded the title “Our Lord and God” (Suetonius, Domitian 13).

    19:7–8 “Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory! For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready. Fine linen, bright and clean, was given her to wear.” (Fine linen stands for the righteous acts of God’s holy people.) God’s people are called to rejoice, be glad, and give God glory because of the arrival of the Lamb’s wedding, a centerpiece of the universal reign of God. In keeping with Jewish wedding customs, the time of betrothal was followed by the wedding proper. On her wedding day the bride would prepare herself by bathing, anointing, and being clothed with special garments (cf. Ezek. 16:9–13). (Interestingly, the verb “prepare” is used seven times in Revelation to emphasize how God is working out his sovereign plan: 8:6; 9:7, 15; 12:6; 16:12; 19:7; 21:2.) The bridegroom and his entourage would then process to the bride’s home and escort her back to his home for the consummation of the marriage and the wedding feast (John 14:1–3). The “bride” of Christ is identified as “God’s holy people” or the saints (14:4; 21:2, 9; 22:17; Ezek. 16:8–14). They have prepared themselves by holding to the testimony of Jesus and faithfully enduring in obedience to God’s commands. God has graciously given (another divine passive: edothē) them the privilege of wearing special wedding garments—“fine linen, bright and clean.” These brilliantly white garments (cf. 3:4; 6:11; 7:9, 13–14; 19:14; Isa. 61:10) stand in contrast to the purple and scarlet linen worn by the harlot (17:4; 18:12, 16). Beale argues persuasively that the fine linen represents both the righteous acts performed by God’s people (subjective genitive) and God’s righteous acts presented to them (objective genitive) through judging their oppressors.2 Even here, the righteous acts done by the saints come as a result of their redemption by Christ (cf. 22:11; Eph. 2:8–10; Phil. 2:12–13).

    Revelation Interpretive Insights

    This fourth beatitude pronounces a blessing on those invited to the Lamb’s messianic banquet (cf. 1:3; 14:13; 16:15; 20:6; 22:7, 14). The image of an eschatological wedding feast celebrates God’s final union with his people in the new creation (see the sidebar). While in 19:7 the church is portrayed as a bride, in 19:9 the church is pictured as the guests invited to the wedding. Images are flexible in prophetic-apocalyptic literature, and the variety helps us to view the people of God from different perspectives: the corporate church as the bride and individual believers as banquet guests; both are true and important.3

    The image of a future wedding feast celebrates YHWH’s final union with his people in the new creation.
    But something here is a bit curious…
    -It seems in verse 7 the church is portrayed as the bride; now here in verse 9, the church is pictured as the guests invited to the wedding. which is which?
    This variety in perspective helps us to view us born again believers from a couple different angles: the corporate church as the bride and individual believers as banquet guests; both are true and important.
    Illustration:
    In our day, many people have distorted what marriage is, understanding it as a legal coupling of convenience that allows people to qualify for certain benefits or formalize an already-existing living arrangement. It’s no wonder that many young people are delaying marriage or dispensing with it altogether. Yet the Bible portrays a much fuller picture of marriage—a union of deep and enduring intimacy, a relationship that involves lifelong commitment lived out in faithfulness and filled with mutual joy, self-giving love, sacrificial service, and exclusive devotion. It is this deeper reality that begins to provide an image of the relationship between Christ and the church.
    In our day, many people have distorted what marriage is, understanding it as a legal coupling of convenience that allows people to qualify for certain benefits or formalize an already-existing living arrangement. It’s no wonder that many young people are delaying marriage or dispensing with it altogether. Yet the Bible portrays a much fuller picture of marriage—a union of deep and enduring intimacy, a relationship that involves lifelong commitment lived out in faithfulness and filled with mutual joy, self-giving love, sacrificial service, and exclusive devotion. It is this deeper reality that begins to provide an image of the relationship between Christ and the church.
    Marriage is an important metaphor to describe God’s relationship with his people
    Transition:
    Transition:
    With this blessing now pronounced in this opulent scene just before the ceremony is complete, who wouldn’t be compelled to fall into pure worship? —and this is exactly what John does; however, John needs a reminder— and so do we:

    III. John reminded to worship God alone (19:10)

    John reminded to worship God alone (19:10)
    John momentarily loses sight of the object worthy of worship! This portion of this passage concludes with the angel reminding John to worship God alone, since God (by his Spirit) is the source of the revelation about Jesus.
    Revelation 19:10 ESV
    Then I fell down at his feet to worship him, but he said to me, “You must not do that! I am a fellow servant with you and your brothers who hold to the testimony of Jesus. Worship God.” For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.
    Revelation Interpretive Insights

    Following the angelic revelation, John is tempted to worship the messenger, but he is rebuked and reminded that only God deserves worship. They have different functions, but both are fellow servants who hold to the testimony of Jesus. God alone deserves worship, since God the Spirit (rather than the angel) is the source of the prophetic message about/from Jesus (i.e., the Holy Spirit of the prophecy). In addition, this scene challenges all forms of idolatry and sends the clear message that all true prophecy exalts Jesus.4 The parallel episode in 22:8–11 also implies that God alone deserves worship because he is the sovereign author of the prophetic message communicated in Revelation (cf. 1 Pet. 1:10–11; 2 Pet. 1:21).

    Following the angel’s wonderful revelation, John attempts to worship the messenger, but he is rebuked and reminded that only God deserves worship. Although they have different natures and different functions, both are just fellow servants who hold to the testimony of Jesus. God alone deserves worship, since God the Spirit (rather than the angel) is the source of the prophetic message about/from Jesus (i.e., the Holy Spirit of the prophecy).
    We, as humans in our sinful flesh, sometimes loose our focus when it comes to the object of worship. Sometimes our focus gazes too hard on other “good” things. One clear example is the “King James Only” movement— they end up worshipping a version of the Bible in place of its Author. Another example is when we start a successful ministry and end up caring more for the ministry than for the One whom the ministry is to be glorifying. Although we might not actually bow down to a ministry or a ministry leader, we still can end up worshipping the ministry in our hearts and our attitudes toward that ministry.
    In addition, this worship scene here with the angel challenges all forms of idolatry and sends the clear message that all true prophecy exalts Jesus— not Charles Taze Russel, not Joseph Smith, not even the Pope. This same worship episode happens again in chapter 22, and also implies that God alone deserves worship because He is the sovereign author of the prophetic message communicated in Revelation
    confirms this:
    2 Peter 1:21 ESV
    For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.
    Illustration:
    We are the bride of Christ and we should act like it!
    One of the classic “Sunday funnies” is The Lockhorns. This comic strip shows a long-married couple at constant war with each other. Often, the wife or the husband is commenting on their spouse to a friend in a supposed humorous fashion, but it is never positive. This kind of behavior in cartoons makes entertainment but terrible examples in living. To be locked in a marriage like that would, in reality, be like a visit to the dentist without novocaine … every single day. When Christians gossip, tear down the church, critique, and complain, they need to realize something: they are talking about Jesus’s bride. Slicing comments and witty put-downs are never funny. They are as crass as criticizing a bride as she walks down the aisle—let alone the bride of the Creator of the universe—the most high God.
    Transition:

    So What?

    Revelation Teaching the Text

    1. At present, we can praise God in anticipation of the beginning of his universal reign. Every generation of Christians lives under some earthly ruler who claims lordship over their world. We know that God is firmly seated on his heavenly throne as the only legitimate ruler of the universe. While God’s sovereignty is never in question, we do not yet see his reign fully established on the earth. We feel the frustration and burden of living under counterfeit kings. But we can anticipate the great multitude’s “Hallelujah” and praise God now because we know his full and glorious reign is coming. This text reminds us to praise God not just for what he has done but for what he is going to do in the future.

    2. There is no greater blessing than to be invited to the wedding supper of the Lamb. In Luke 10 when the seventy-two return to Jesus with stories of how even the demons submitted to Jesus’s authority, Jesus himself redirects his disciples’ focus to the blessing of having a secure standing before God: “Do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven” (Luke 10:20). This passage challenges us to rethink what constitutes our most significant blessing. It’s not our spiritual authority or even our God-given ministry, but the comfort and security and encouragement that come from knowing Jesus and being known by him, from being on the heavenly guest list for the great wedding banquet. Our personal relationship with the Bridegroom is our greatest blessing.

    So we can enjoy our Father in joyful celebration!
    1. Today, we can praise God in anticipation of the beginning of His universal reign.
    Every generation of Christians lives under some earthly ruler who claims lordship over their world. We know that God is firmly seated on his heavenly throne as the only legitimate ruler of the universe. While God’s sovereignty is never in question, we do not yet see His reign fully established on the earth. We feel the frustration and burden of living under counterfeit kings. But we can anticipate the great multitude’s “Hallelujah” and praise God now because we know His full and glorious reign is coming. This passage reminds us to praise God not just for what he has done but for what He is going to do in the future.
    2. There is no greater blessing than to be invited to the wedding supper of the Lamb.
    In , when the seventy-two disciples return to Jesus with stories of how even the demons submitted to Jesus’s authority, Jesus himself redirects his disciples’ focus to the blessing of having a secure standing before God: ().
    Luke 10:20 ESV
    Nevertheless, do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.”
    This verse with our passage in Revelation challenges us to rethink what is our most significant blessing. It’s not our spiritual authority or even our God-given ministry, but the comfort and security and encouragement that come from knowing Jesus and being known by him, from being on the heavenly guest list for the great wedding banquet. Our personal relationship with the Bridegroom is our greatest blessing.
    3. Righteous behavior is crucial to our preparation as the bride of Christ.
    Revelation repeatedly stresses the importance of the church’s actions and deeds. As Paul says in , salvation is by grace (source), through faith (means), and for good works (results). Even in Romans where Paul goes into great detail about justification by faith (), he also gives a great deal of attention to how God’s people should live (, ). The church is characterized by obedience to God and loyalty to the Lamb, rather than compromise with the world system. As we allow God to transform us, we are preparing ourselves as the body of Christ for his appearing (; ).
    Revelation Teaching the Text

    3. Righteous behavior is crucial to our preparation as the bride of Christ. Revelation repeatedly stresses the importance of the church’s actions and deeds (see the sidebar in 2:18–29). As Paul says in Ephesians 2:8–10, salvation is by grace (source), through faith (means), and for good works (results). Even in Romans where Paul goes into great detail about justification by faith (Rom. 3–5), he also gives a great deal of attention to how God’s people should live (Rom. 6–8, 12–16). The church is characterized by obedience to God and loyalty to the Lamb, rather than compromise with the world system. As we allow God to transform us, we are preparing ourselves as the body of Christ for his appearing (Phil. 1:6; 2:12–13). Spiritual (by the Spirit) formation should always be wedded to Christian eschatology.

    4. While we should never shoot the messenger, neither should we worship him. God alone deserves our worship. While John is tempted to worship the angelic messenger, we are sometimes tempted to worship human messengers, especially those who preach and teach and counsel and lead us effectively. But God alone, by his Spirit, is the source of the prophecy about Jesus. As leaders, we serve the people under our care best when we discourage any unhealthy dependence upon ourselves and point them to Jesus. This takes awareness, personal security, and sometimes tough love, but it is worth it. I’m reminded of what Paul told the Corinthians: “I urge you to imitate me. For this reason I have sent you Timothy.… He will remind you of my way of life in Christ” (1 Cor. 4:16–17). We can urge people to imitate our way of life in Christ without compelling them to imitate our personality or mannerisms (i.e., Paul and Timothy seem to have had very different personalities but a shared commitment to Christ).

    4. While we should never shoot the messenger, neither should we worship him.
    God alone deserves our worship. While John is tempted to worship the angelic messenger, we are sometimes tempted to worship human messengers—especially those who preach and teach and counsel and lead us effectively i.e. John MacArthur, Chuck Swindoll, D.A. Carson, John Piper. But God alone, by his Spirit, is the source of the prophecy about Jesus. We must discourage any unhealthy dependence upon these spiritual leaders and point those who love these godly men too much to Jesus. This takes awareness, personal security, and sometimes tough love, but it is worth it.
    I’m reminded of what Paul told the Corinthians: “I urge you to imitate me. For this reason I have sent you Timothy.… He will remind you of my way of life in Christ” (). We can urge people to imitate our way of life in Christ without compelling them to imitate our personality or mannerisms (i.e., Paul and Timothy seem to have had very different personalities but a shared commitment to Christ).
    Conclusion:
    Revelation Interpretive Insights

    God deserves praise and glory for beginning his universal reign.

    ▪ Jesus relates to his people like a husband to his bride.

    ▪ God’s people, in contrast to the great prostitute, are clothed in righteous acts.

    ▪ Angels, like believing humans, are fellow servants who hold to the testimony of Jesus.

    ▪ God alone deserves worship, for he (by his Spirit) is the source of the prophecy about Jesus.

    Revelation Interpretive Insights

    God deserves praise and glory for beginning his universal reign.

    ▪ Jesus relates to his people like a husband to his bride.

    ▪ God’s people, in contrast to the great prostitute, are clothed in righteous acts.

    ▪ Angels, like believing humans, are fellow servants who hold to the testimony of Jesus.

    ▪ God alone deserves worship, for he (by his Spirit) is the source of the prophecy about Jesus.

    God deserves praise and glory for beginning his universal reign.
    Jesus relates to his people, to us, like a husband to his bride.
    God’s people, in contrast to the great prostitute, are clothed in righteous acts.
    Angels, like believing humans, are fellow servants who hold to the testimony of Jesus.
    God alone deserves worship, for he (by his Spirit) is the source of the prophecy about Jesus.
      • Revelation 19:6–10ESV

      • Matthew 26:29ESV

      • Revelation 19:6ESV

      • Revelation 19:7ESV

      • Revelation 19:8ESV

      • Revelation 19:9ESV

      • Revelation 19:10ESV

      • Revelation 19:10ESV

      • 2 Peter 1:21ESV

      • Luke 10:20ESV

  • He Is Exalted
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        Men's & Ladies' Bible Studies

        September 12, 2019 - 10:00 AM - 10:00 AM

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