Today our chief text is from Revelation 21. I am including the 54th Psalm (also included in the daily lectionary reading) simply because it’s so damn beautiful.
1 Save me, O God, by your name,
and vindicate me by your might.
2 Hear my prayer, O God;
give ear to the words of my mouth.
3 For the insolent have risen against me,
the ruthless seek my life;
they do not set God before them. Selah
4 But surely, God is my helper;
the Lord is the upholder of my life.
5 He will repay my enemies for their evil.
In your faithfulness, put an end to them.
6 With a freewill offering I will sacrifice to you;
I will give thanks to your name, O LORD, for it is good.
7 For he has delivered me from every trouble,
and my eye has looked in triumph on my enemies
1Then 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. 2And I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying,
“See, the home of God is among mortals.
He will dwell with them;
they will be his peoples,
and God himself will be with them;
4 he will wipe every tear from their eyes.
Death will be no more;
mourning and crying and pain will be no more,
for the first things have passed away.”
5And the one who was seated on the throne said, “See, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this, for these words are trustworthy and true.” 6Then 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 water as a gift from the spring of the water of life. 7Those who conquer will inherit these things, and I will be their God and they will be my children.
There opinions I have concerning Revelation. 1) It is written in an Apocalyptic genre that contains prose and poetry. 2) John was having a WORSHIP EXPERIENCE. John did not “die” in his vision. In my opinion, Revelation is much more about God’s expectation of his church on earth than an afterlife.
I see a new Heaven in a new earth, for the earth had no heaven in it. I pray for Heaven on Earth. I pray at a time when the “sea” is no more”. I pray for a time when there is no division in God’s Church. I pray for the Church to be born of Heaven rather than born out of man’s selfish desires. A spotless bride for Christ can never be born of man. The Church has to be the home of God among mortals. We who are filled with the Holy Spirit are the dwelling places of God on Earth, so our churches should be where the best part of our God selves are seen. Yet, at many churches I find more gossipping, back biting and pure evil than I find at the pub on Friday nights. We are God’s people and God himself is with us. We have the choice to recognize the God self within us. God wipes the tears from our eyes through others. God works through his people. We can choose to live in the New Heaven on Earth or to choose to live on the old earth. This decision to live in the New Earth is intertwined with our decision to wipe the tears from our brothers eyes.
God is making all things new through us. We are his plan.
There’s your heresy for today.