Notes on the Seven Churches (17)

‘Searching the Seven Churches”

The way, the truth and the life!

The Fulness of Christ – (Revelation Chapter 1 Verse 8)

This is the voice of Christ (v8). All the way through the age the invisible Jesus is with his suffering servant, the church. Just as he promised, “and behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:20). So then who are rulers of this world, the Domitian’s. the Nero’s, the Hitler’s and the Mussolini’s? It was Domitian who was the cause of John’s exile on the island of Patmos. The Obama’s the Cameron’s, they are nobody’s, it is the sovereign Christ who rules supremely in this world’s history (Psalm 2:6-12). This is the same all-glorious King Jesus that John saw, of whom he will say more in due course (vv13-17). Who consoles, invigorates and reassures his church through the age in all her tribulations. He, Jesus, is the fulness of the revelation of God. The letters Alpha and Omega are the first and last letters of the Greek alphabet in which the New Testament is written. This is Jesus, the beginning of and the end of the revelation of God, in its written form also. From start to finish the golden thread running through all of the Scripture is the person of Jesus Christ (John 5:39: John 14:6), the revelation of God. God always and only ever reveals himself in the person of his Son, Jesus. He bears the name Logos John 1:1), the Word of God (Revelation 19:13), i.e., the one and only and complete revelation of God. And the visions of this book are his (v1). When you begin to see this, you begin to understand the warnings he gives later (Revelation 22:18-19), you reject my testimony he says, I reject you. This too is the revelation of deity, this is the language of deity (v8). “I am,” “who is and was and who is to come” (Revelation 4:8b). This is the signature of deity (Exodus 3:14). He, Jesus, is Lord and God, co-equal with the Father and with the Holy Spirit (v4). This is a clear declaration that he is God. So he is saying to his church in the midst of her trials and sufferings, he says to his bride, take courage, my wife, because your husband is nothing less than the Triune God, and I am coming for you!

This too is a revelation of his power. The Almighty, El-Shaddai, the transcendent God, the voice of Jesus. He who is over time, over history, over all events in all his creation. Not a hair falls from your head or a sparrow to the ground without he has decreed it. He sits on the pinnacle of the universe and he governs all affairs in his creation, he rules and he overrules (Romans 8:28). The powers of darkness have no power but by him. Satan is a junkyard dog and Jesus Christ controls the chain (Revelation 20:2). He is the Almighty, and he uses the powers of darkness for his own sovereign ends, yes, even the sins of God’s elect, he uses and causes to work, in the end, for the good of those who love him. What grace is this! What peace! In the midst of all the sufferings God’s children face throughout the age, and greatly heightened toward the end of the age. Faith is victorious, triumphant you see, that overcomes the world and the trials are causes us (John 16:33; 1John 5:4). No, were are not looking for world dominion, a Christianised world, because this world hates Jesus and hates his people and it always will. Today, you’re looking at a broken society, with the marks of death and decay all over it, and testimony of Jesus is it’s going to get worse, darker, not better. But what a glorious opportunity for Christians, though few in number though the darkness is great, and all the positive thinking in the world won’t alter that, but that does not discourage me one iota. What a glorious opportunity is ours to shine and to show what God is like. As his prophets to confess his truth, as priests unto to God to give our lives a living sacrifice to him, and to rule in righteousness throughout the age. But O what gloom and despair outside of Jesus Christ, what utter hopelessness! The world that’s dying and you with it if you don not share in the anointing of Christ, if you are not a Christ-one, nothing but gloom, despair, darkness and death, that’s all that you have. If Christ doesn’t save you, he will judge you. According to the testimony of Jesus, the “Faithful Witness,  humanity is divided into grain and chaff, church and the world, bride and whore, children of light and those of darkness. Only in the first does God realise his covenant, and that out of grace. This takes place, according to the teaching of Scripture, history and experience, in the way of a dreadful struggle in the world and the life of the human race. Thus forming an antithesis within the race, thus, the separation and struggle will continue until “Omega” comes to end history as we know it, and save his people finally, consummately.

(© James R Hamilton, written Summer, 2011)

Sermon Audio


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