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A Weekly Word from John
Attitude of Gratitude

11/23/2014 Attitude of Gratitude: I Thessalonians 5:15-24

thank youThanksgiving season… The bright colors of fall turn to auburn brown. The air gets a little colder. The heat goes on. The television commercials are already ringing the bells of Christmas. Our minds turn to our historic roots of the Pilgrims who, in spite of hardship, landed on the shores of the New World with thanksgiving prayers in their hearts.  

Some may cynically say, “What on earth do we have to be thankful for? Our branches of government are deeply divided; barbaric war activity in the Middle East; the ebola virus kills thousands in West Africa and has even crossed our borders.” We want to put on a happy smile but, inside, we long for reasons to be thankful.

God’s Reign and our Hope

11/09/2014 God’s Reign and our Hope: Revelation 4:1-11

calm seaIt’s helpful to remember that Revelation was written to give suffering Christians encouragement to endure the persecution that was increasingly common. In Rev. 4 John is pulled up into the heavenly throne room and beholds the glory of God. Everything he sees in this vision serves as a reminder that God is in control: His reign is not being limited or challenged, he’s not up for re-election, he has no rivals. God is fully in control.

The Benevolent Gatekeeper

10/26/2014  The Benevolent Gatekeeper: Revelation 3:7-13

open gateJesus, the holy and true ruler of history, knows the deeds of man, brings certain salvation and holds the future of the Church.

If we are to really understand the letters written to the churches in Revelation we need to first understand the One dictating. John is instructed to write. What follows in every letter is a description of the one who dictates and the instruction that follows. Here in Revelation 3:7-13 we find the same. These are the words of Him who is holy and true and hold the key of David.

The Lamb and the Scroll

11/09/2014 The Lamb and the Scroll: Revelation 5:1-14

scrollCharles Wesley wrote in one of his famous hymns, ‘Changed from glory into glory,
till in heaven we take our place, till we cast our crowns before Thee,
lost in wonder, love, and praise
. (Love Divine all Loves Excelling)

As John was caught up into heaven and became a witness of the vision of praise in the throne room of God, with the myriads of angels, thousands upon thousands; he must have felt lost in wonder, love and praise. Not only do we see the ABILITY (v.5) of the Lamb who was slain who sits at the right hand of the Father on the throne, but we also see his WORTHINESS. (v.9) to open the scroll. What is this scroll? This book? It is the eternal, unfolding plan of God to be carried out in final triumph because the Lamb is triumphant. He has conquered temptation and death itself.  

Hot or Cold?

11/02/2014 Hot or Cold?: Revelation 3:14-22

Lukewarm Laodicea...

coldIs your Christian life in the ‘cool zone’? Not in the sense of popular but rather in the sense of being bland and flat? A wholehearted follower is what Jesus desires from day one. That is the only way we will experience joy and purpose ‘welling up’ into eternal life. 

Living in God's Story

10/19/2014  Living in God's Story: Habakkuk 1:5

warIn the stress and challenge of Habakkuk’s day, we see a reflection of our day as well. Destruction, violence, injustice, misery, war, and wickedness. Habakkuk complains to God but does it in faith. The Lord’s reply? ‘Be amazed Habakkuk! I am doing something extraordinary in your day among the nations.’ Judgment will come upon Israel but God will receive glory in the end.

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