Thursday, August 27, 2015, 12:30 a.m. – The Lord Jesus put in mind the song “For Our Nation.” Speak, Lord, your words to my heart. I read Revelation 22 (NASB). Our Future (vv. 1-7) Then he showed me a river of the water of life, clear as crystal, coming from the throne of God and of the Lamb, in the middle of its street. On either side of the river was the tree of life, bearing twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit every month; and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. There will no longer be any curse; and the throne of God and of the Lamb will be in it, and His bond-servants will serve Him; they will see His face, and His name will be on their foreheads. And there will no longer be any night; and they will not have need of the light of a lamp nor the light of the sun, because the Lord God will illumine them; and they will reign forever and ever. And he said to me, “These words are faithful and true”; and the Lord, the God of the spirits of the prophets, sent His angel to show to His bond-servants the things which must soon take place. “And behold, I am coming quickly. Blessed is he who heeds the words of the prophecy of this book.” From what I understand of these last days’ events, God is presently calling out to his wayward church (See: Rev. 2-3), is warning them of impending judgment, is confronting them with their idolatry and spiritual adultery, and he is calling them to repent of their sins and to return to their “first love.” Although I certainly don’t know the timing of all these things, I do know that much of what has been prophesied in this book has already begun to take place. For instance, Satan is enraged at the saints of God and is making war against those who obey God’s commandments and who hold to the testimony of Jesus (See: Rev. 12:17), but he has been doing that ever since Jesus died, was resurrected, ascended into heaven, and sent his Holy Spirit to indwell his followers and to empower them from on high to be his witnesses throughout the world; to share the message of the eternal gospel. Yet, we have seen a recent upsurge in this kind of persecution worldwide, including within the U.S.A. And, then we have the “beast.” Although I don’t know if this beast is in its final form, it has been forming for hundreds of years. America, I believe, was founded on the premise of bringing the world ultimately under the rule of a one-world government (the All-Seeing Eye). The symbolism is all throughout our Great Seal. The United Nations was formed for this purpose, as was NATO, the Trilateral Commission, and the Council on Foreign Relations, etc. This beast has been rising for a long while. And, the U.S. government has been instrumental in leading the way for the rise of this beast (New World Order). Our government, in concert with this “beast,” creates chaos in various nations, including within our own, so that it (they) can go into these nations and take them over, and that is what they have been doing. If you have followed world news for the past 10 years, especially, with any amount of discernment, you could not help but notice the modus operandi of this beast within these various nations: A problem is created which thus requires a solution, but the nations themselves are incapable of solving their own problems (created by the US/N.W.O.), so the “international community” is called in to “save the day,” but not really. They are there to take over, consume, destroy and kill. They are also hotly pursuing followers of Jesus Christ and are responsible for many deaths and persecutions of Christians throughout the world. The US Gov./New World Order are the world’s terrorists. So, much of what was prophesied in Revelation 13 has already begun to take place. God is judging his wayward people already, I believe, via this New World Order. Much of the people of this earth are already under its control. It is making war against the saints of God and is conquering (overpowering) them, some through deceit and trickery, and some through persecution and death, i.e. through oppression and military strength and power. It won’t be long before this beast will truly be ruling all peoples of the earth, though I suspect much of the world is presently already under its control, although it may be ruling from behind the scenes, at present, i.e. as a shadow government. We are being called to come out from the world’s system, and to not take its mark (impression) on our lives, and we are called to follow Jesus Christ in surrender to his will for our lives. God is allowing all these things to take place, not just to judge, but to bring his adulterous church to repentance and revival and to bring many people to faith in Jesus Christ before our Lord returns. When this time of judgment is complete, which includes the wrath of God being poured out on the earth, and on the people of the earth, and on this beast, the false prophet and the dragon, the beast and false prophet will be thrown into the lake of fire and the dragon will be bound for 1,000 years, during which time Jesus and his saints will reign over the earth. At the end of that time, the dragon will be released for a short time, but then he will be thrown into the lake of fire, as will all who worship the beast. Then, we will have the new heaven and the new earth, for the old order of things, where we lived on an earth cursed by sin, will be done away with, and now there will be no more sin, sickness, death, sadness, pain or tears. Although Jesus Christ is our great physician, and he heals us now spiritually and emotionally and physically, and he comforts us with his love and mercy, a day is coming when we will be whole, completely healed, with no more suffering or sadness. Then we will be with Jesus face-to-face. We will never be tempted by sin again, or know the sorrow of rejection, abandonment and persecution. This is what the saints of God have to look forward to. This is our future, our hope, our salvation. Amen! Washed Robes (vv. 8-16) I, John, am the one who heard and saw these things. And when I heard and saw, I fell down to worship at the feet of the angel who showed me these things. But he *said to me, “Do not do that. I am a fellow servant of yours and of your brethren the prophets and of those who heed the words of this book. Worship God.” And he *said to me, “Do not seal up the words of the prophecy of this book, for the time is near. Let the one who does wrong, still do wrong; and the one who is filthy, still be filthy; and let the one who is righteous, still practice righteousness; and the one who is holy, still keep himself holy.” “Behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to render to every man according to 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 may enter by the gates into the city. Outside are the dogs and the sorcerers and the immoral persons and the murderers and the idolaters, and everyone who loves and practices lying. “I, Jesus, have sent My angel to testify to you these things for the churches. I am the root and the descendant of David, the bright morning star.” The majority of today’s church, at least here in America, has fallen prey to Satan’s deceptions, and has gone the way of the world, and is following humans rather than, or over and above God. Rather than the majority of the saints of God going out into the world with the gospel of Jesus Christ, the church has invited the world into the meetings of the church, and has thus patterned its meetings in such a way as to attract the world to the “church,” but not to lead the people of this sinful world to genuine faith in Jesus Christ. Rather than confronting the world with its sin and calling the world to repentance, the church is entertaining the world, and thus has diluted and twisted the gospel to make it more appealing and acceptable to the people of the world. There is not much distinction between the church and the world anymore. The church has largely rejected Bible studies in favor of book studies, of books written by mere humans, in which scripture is neatly placed in order to give an impression that what is contained within is Biblical, but much of it is not. So, God is calling out to his church to forsake her idols and to worship God only. The “gospel” being taught in much of today’s church is not the gospel according to Jesus and his NT apostles. It is a gospel of human origin. It teaches that God requires nothing of us other than to “believe,” although that belief is not really explained. It comes across more like an intellectual acknowledgment of Jesus and of what he did in dying for our sins, or an emotional decision to make him Savior of our lives, although many do not comprehend what that really means, either. Remember that James said that even the demons believe, and they shudder. The church has lost the fear (awe, respect and reverence) of God. They teach that we don’t have to repent of (turn from) sin, and that we don’t have to obey Jesus, and that once we pray that prayer that heaven is guaranteed to us no matter how badly we sin from that point on, and that God is pleased with us no matter what we do. But, is that what scripture teaches? No! We read in Romans 6 that salvation means death to sin and living to righteousness; being delivered from slavery to sin so that we can become slaves (servants) of righteousness. We read in Romans 8 that Jesus died that the righteous requirements of the law might be fully met in us who walk not according to the flesh, but who conduct our lives in agreement with the Spirit, for if we walk according to the flesh, we will die, but if by the Spirit we put to death the deeds of the flesh, we will live. We read in 1 Peter 2:24 that Jesus died that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. We read in 2 Co. 5:15 that Jesus died that we might no longer live for ourselves, but for him who gave himself up for us. And, we read in 1 John 1:6 that if we claim to have fellowship with God, but we continue (persist in) walking (conducting our lives) in darkness (according to the flesh), that we are liars. In other words, faith in Jesus Christ is not just words we say, but it means death to sin and living to God. Come (vv. 17-21) 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 wishes take the water of life without cost. I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone adds to them, God will add to him the plagues which are written in this book; and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his part from the tree of life and from the holy city, which are written in this book. He who testifies to these things says, “Yes, I am coming quickly.” Amen. Come, Lord Jesus. The grace of the Lord Jesus be with all. Amen. Jesus is calling out to his adulterous and idolatrous church, and he is saying “Return to me.” He is calling out to the people of this sinful world, and he is saying, “Come to me, and take the free gift of the water of life.” It is free because Jesus died to purchase our salvation for us. Not one of us can keep the whole law perfectly, so not one of us can secure our own salvation. God has provided it for us as a free gift, yet “free” does not mean free to continue in sin. When he purchased our salvation, he purchased us, for us to die with him to sin and live with him to righteousness. We are called to be holy. We are commanded to obey and to repent, and to walk in Christ’s righteousness and holiness. God’s grace is not a free license to continue in sin without guilt and without remorse. His grace, which brings salvation, teaches us to say “No!” to ungodliness and worldly passions and desires, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives while we wait for Christ’s return (Tit. 2:11-14). So, if you are claiming heaven as your future, but you are living for yourself today, I pray you will turn from your sin, and you will follow Jesus Christ in surrender to his will for the rest of your days. For Our Nation / An Original Work / September 11, 2012 Bombs are bursting. Night is falling. Jesus Christ is gently calling You to follow Him in all ways. Trust Him with your life today. Make Him your Lord and your Savior. Turn from your sin. Follow Jesus. He will forgive you of your sin; Cleanse your heart, made new within. Men betraying: Our trust fraying. On our knees to God we’re praying, Seeking God to give us answers That are only found in Him. God is sovereign over all things. Nothing from His mind escaping. He has all things under His command, And will work all for good. Jesus Christ is gently calling You to follow Him in all ways. Men deceiving: we’re believing In our Lord, and interceding For our nation and its people To obey their God today. He is our hope for our future. For our wounds He offers suture. He is all we need for this life. Trust Him with your life today.