Christ's Chastening & Comforting Work in His Church
When John saw Jesus that Sunday morning on Patmos, he collapsed and was like a dead man. It wasn’t that he was old and weak, or overcome by emotion: John had seen that look in Christ's eyes before, and when he realized what Jesus was communicating, it overwhelmed him. John saw Almighty God the Son, Jesus Christ who was displeased with His Church.
Did you know that in less than 60 years, the original edition of Christ's Church had gotten to the point where 70% of the local assemblies were displeasing to God? That’s right 5 out of the 7 churches that Jesus had visited were reprimanded and warned. Christ’s expressed in 5 out of 7 letters His displeasure about the way that were living out God’s plan for their lives.
Jesus had done an onsite examination, and now He was asking John to write the report and send it back to each of those churches. The report was not good, but the situation was not hopeless. In each instance all that was needed was a change of mind that would lead to a change in behavior. That is what Jesus asked for: repentence!
This message of Jesus we are looking at in Revelation is vital for each of us today. As we open to Revelation 1 we are seeing a divinely given portrait of the real Jesus visiting the “purchased with His own blood” congregations of the redeemed.
What we get in this chapter is a portrait that is three-fold. It is Divine, its is corrective, and it is very sobering.
The Divine, Corrective, and Sobering Portrait of the Real Jesus
The description of Jesus in Revelation 1:9-20 is unlike any other single passage in all of God's Word. In these verses we see Jesus as He is right now, and what we see isn’t what we usually think of Him. That’s why we need this portrait.
- First, it is a Divine Portrait. This is the way God wants every person in Christ's Church to look on the Jesus we know and love. God sent this vision of Jesus to John for the believers of all the ages onward.
- Secondly, it is a Corrective Portrait. Revelation 1 is a Corrective Portrait of Jesus that many early believers needed to get them back focused on Christ's desires for them in daily life.
- Finally, it is a Sobering Portrait. Nowhere is the intolerance of sin that Jesus has for His Church more clearly seen than in this chapter.
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