As we look on the world today, it is easy to reflect on perhaps simpler days, and wonder what has happened to make our world so frail, and even fractured. For many Christians, particularly in the west, we weep as we see the degradation of societal values, effectively denouncing the hundreds (even thousands of years) of Judeo-Christian morals and value sets that have been in our laws, giving themselves over to laws that prioritise self, the rule of man, and even demonic ideals. Christmas, is no longer a time when many reflect on the coming of Christ, rather a time for ‘happy holidays’, and commercial success. Even more troubling, is the turning away from our Lord God by so many. This has occurred before in history, and reformations and revivals have come to stem the tide of moral decline and renewed our passion for Christ. Perhaps, we pray, this will come again soon…but maybe only to certain regions or countries or people. The Bible makes it clear there will be great darkness in the heart of many men in the last days, deliberately shunning God, and even killing or locking up His servants due to the uncomfortable messages which they live and speak out. God in His abundant mercy giving us so much time to turn our hearts towards Him, even knowing that many will choose not to do so. However, the mysteries of the Sovereign God ‘s and man’s will come to a final confrontation, and no more excuses will be entered into. The victor is already clear, and many are those amongst His ranks. For those who are not with Him, the words of Christ are already judging their actions as they choose to follow their own ways.
And yet, as I set out afresh on this advent journey with the Holy Spirit as my guide, looking beyond the first coming of our Lord Jesus to His soon return and the consummation of His work, my prayer was that in some ways God would speak to us, perhaps even bring a new perspective to the lives we live. And, rather than be a spectator to this greatest of all events, praying that by God’s Spirit, we would even have a glimpse of standing in that day as the prophet Daniel did. This would need to be a work of God, for many others have delved into the return of Christ much more effectively, and much has been written about the meaning of advent. And while reluctant, pressing on, a story of the Second Advent unfolded. For those who have followed, bless you for your grace and patience. For myself, the Lord has indeed help me to look beyond circumstances and disappointment, and to see afresh with eternity’s eyes the assurance of Christ’s return, and the good work He will complete. The things of earth did indeed seem to dim as I looked upon His glorious, returning, face.
“Hold on,” our Lord says, “the great prize of peace and joy with Me for eternity is your reward. Don’t worry about the rise of wickedness, I am not, its end will come. For as much as the darkness deepens, so to My light grows brighter, and My plan of redemption will be completed.” God’s delight is still in His children, and He is well pleased with the faithfulness of those who have received His love. Christ Jesus looks forward to the day when we will all come together in and with Him and share in the joy and love of our Heavenly Father to their fullness. It is time to come up a little higher, focusing on our Lord, and His soon return.
“For my eyes have seen Your salvation which You have prepared before the face of all peoples, a light to bring revelation to the Gentiles, and the glory of Your people Israel.” (Luke 2:30-32)
Then he said to me, “These words are faithful and true.” And the Lord God of the holy prophets sent His angel to show His servants the things which must shortly take place. “Behold, I am coming quickly! Blessed is he who keeps the words of the prophecy of this book.” Now I, John, saw and heard these things. And when I heard and saw, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel who showed me these things. Then he said to me, “See that you do not do that. For I am your fellow servant, and of your brethren the prophets, and of those who keep the words of this book. Worship God.” And he said to me, “Do not seal the words of the prophecy of this book, for the time is at hand. He who is unjust, let him be unjust still; he who is filthy, let him be filthy still; he who is righteous, let him be righteous still; he who is holy, let him be holy still.” [Jesus Testifies to the Churches] “And behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to give to everyone according to his work. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last.” Blessed are those who do His commandments, that they may have the right to the tree of life, and may enter through the gates into the city. But outside are dogs and sorcerers and sexually immoral and murderers and idolaters, and whoever loves and practices a lie. “I, Jesus, have sent My angel to testify to you these things in the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, the Bright and Morning Star.” And the Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let him who hears say, “Come!” And let him who thirsts come. Whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely. (Revelations 22:6-17)