The End

“Behold, I am coming soon, bringing my recompense with me, to repay each one for what he has done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.”

Blessed are those who wash their robes, so that they may have the right to the tree of life and that they may enter the city by the gates. Outside are the dogs and sorcerers and the sexually immoral and murderers and idolaters, and everyone who loves and practices falsehood.

“I, Jesus, have sent my angel to testify to you about these things for the churches. I am the root and the descendant of David, the bright morning star.”

The Spirit and the Bride say, “Come.” And let the one who hears say, “Come.” And let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who desires take the water of life without price.

I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone adds to them, God will add to him the plagues described in this book, and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his share in the tree of life and in the holy city, which are described in this book.

He who testifies to these things says, “Surely I am coming soon.” Amen. Come, Lord Jesus!

The grace of the Lord Jesus be with all. Amen. Revelation 22:12-21.

Here we are, at the end if the Bible, and some things do not change. What we believe changes us. What we do is the proof. Jesus said, when teaching His disciples, that you don’t pick figs from thistles. Our fruit, what comes out of us, proves what we are. But generations of false teachers have flipped that on it’s head. We have been taught by many that what goes into us proves us: reading the right books (including the Bible), listening to sermons on Sunday, listening to Christian radio, avoiding alcohol and tobacco. But Jesus thought some things were more important than tithing and other church duties.

“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint and dill and cumin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faithfulness. These you ought to have done, without neglecting the others.” Matthew 23:23.

We never think of ourselves when we read about how Jesus very rudely castigated the religious leaders of His time. But a warning is a warning. Justice, mercy and faithfulness must come out of us, or we may discover that we were deceived.

I understand that I am heading into the prevailing religious headwinds of America. Most Evangelical pastors in America may call me harsh, mean, or even heretical. But truth is not determined by consensus. It is revealed by God. And few be they that find it.

The New Jerusalem

Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”

And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” And he said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will give from the spring of the water of life without payment. The one who conquers will have this heritage, and I will be his God and he will be my son. But as for the cowardly, the faithless, the detestable, as for murderers, the sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars, their portion will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur, which is the second death.” Revelation 21:1-8.

One of the things that kills the credibility of the church is that we don’t think these warnings against sin and falling away are for US. We think they are just for atheists, homosexuals, and Democrats. It may be the reason they just see us as scribes, Pharisees and hypocrites. We are experts on everyone else’s sin and give ourselves a pass on our own.

If you read ALL of the Bible, and not just the sweet and juicy promises, you will see that there are tons of warnings for God’s people. The are many cautionary tales, and examples of good people going bad. God would have to raise up some outsider to speak truth to power, because the insiders didn’t seem to have a clue.

Judgment begins in the house of the Lord, not down at the gay bar and the crack house. We must wash our own robes before we can save the rest. We must humble ourselves, like the disciple who asked Jesus, “Is it me?” when He told them at the last supper that one of them would betray Him.

The Devil Does Time

Then I saw an angel coming down from heaven, holding in his hand the key to the bottomless pit[a] and a great chain. And he seized the dragon, that ancient serpent, who is the devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years, and threw him into the pit, and shut it and sealed it over him, so that he might not deceive the nations any longer, until the thousand years were ended. After that he must be released for a little while.

Then I saw thrones, and seated on them were those to whom the authority to judge was committed. Also I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for the testimony of Jesus and for the word of God, and those who had not worshiped the beast or its image and had not received its mark on their foreheads or their hands. They came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were ended. This is the first resurrection. Blessed and holy is the one who shares in the first resurrection! Over such the second death has no power, but they will be priests of God and of Christ, and they will reign with him for a thousand years. Revelation 20:1-6.

This thousand year period has always raised a lot of questions in my own mind, like, where is everyone else during this time? If the first resurrection is for those who suffered during the Great Tribulation, what do we call what happened to all previous generations of saints? And why a thousand years? And why does the devil get paroled?

The only answers I can give boil down to this: God is working out justice for Himself, His creation, and His people on His terms. I trust Him entirely and I am content to be yielded to Him. After all, He made me.

The Other Jesus

Then I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse! The one sitting on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he judges and makes war. His eyes are like a flame of fire, and on his head are many diadems, and he has a name written that no one knows but himself. He is clothed in a robe dipped in blood, and the name by which he is called is The Word of God. And the armies of heaven, arrayed in fine linen, white and pure, were following him on white horses. From his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations, and he will rule them with a rod of iron. He will tread the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God the Almighty. On his robe and on his thigh he has a name written, King of kings and Lord of lords. Revelation 19:11-16.

I once had a customer telling me why she did not believe in capital punishment. And she asked me, “Can you really imagine Jesus pulling the switch?” I responded, “Do you mean the same Jesus who will one day say, ‘Depart from me, into everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels’? Yes, I can see that.”

Do not be deceived. You cannot reinvent Jesus to fit your political leanings. He died for our sin to save us. That is because the penalty of sin is death. He made peace with us, not with our sin. He did not legalize sexual perversion, race hatred, anarchy, greed, envy, or murder. He is not a social justice warrior who justifies group guilt. He will be bringing actual justice to individuals, and it will be terrible.

This past week I was told that a certain denomination’s local churches took out an ad apologizing for their international organization voting down the acceptance of homosexuality. Such a public declaration is one against the God who died to save them, and an attempt to remake Him in their own image. Individuals who are in sympathy with that declaration are in danger of hearing Real Jesus say, “I never knew you.”

“Come out of her, my people.”

After this I saw another angel coming down from heaven, having great authority, and the earth was made bright with his glory. And he called out with a mighty voice,

“Fallen, fallen is Babylon the great!
She has become a dwelling place for demons,
a haunt for every unclean spirit,
a haunt for every unclean bird,
a haunt for every unclean and detestable beast.

For all nations have drunk[a]
the wine of the passion of her sexual immorality,
and the kings of the earth have committed immorality with her,
and the merchants of the earth have grown rich from the power of her luxurious living.”

Then I heard another voice from heaven saying,

“Come out of her, my people,
lest you take part in her sins,
lest you share in her plagues;

for her sins are heaped high as heaven,
and God has remembered her iniquities.

Pay her back as she herself has paid back others,
and repay her double for her deeds;
mix a double portion for her in the cup she mixed.

As she glorified herself and lived in luxury,
so give her a like measure of torment and mourning,
since in her heart she says,
‘I sit as a queen,
I am no widow,
and mourning I shall never see.’

For this reason her plagues will come in a single day,
death and mourning and famine,
and she will be burned up with fire;
for mighty is the Lord God who has judged her.” Revelation 18:1-8.

Everyone becomes caught up in Babylon’s sin, or else we wouldn’t be called you come out of her. Although Babylon is depicted as a city, it seems to be much more than a place. It is more of a culture. We don’t just suddenly find ourselves within certain physical borders so much as caught up in it’s ways. Be vigilant, and watch your own life.