Hello everybody and welcome in to episode #362 of the Bible 2021 podcast. We are reading reading Revelation 22 today and our focus is on How Does the Bible End? How Does the Bible Finish? What Happens at the End of the Bible? What is the Last Promise in the Bible? What is at the end of the Bible? We are a daily 10ish minute podcast, where we will dig in to the truth of the Word of God by reading one Bible chapter a day and discussing it. Welcome to new listeners in . Four more days left in the year, and 3 more episodes of the pod after this one – how time flies. Happy birthday to my oldest friend – the friend I’ve had the longest – Beau A. in Alabama. Our goal is to encourage DAILY Bible reading, so you can jump in at any time and join with us. We want to invite as many people as possible to join us in daily Bible reading, so help spread the word and share the podcast! Don’t forget about our web-page, Bible2021.com – contact page, show notes, transcript and more– Click here for our Bible 2021 reading plan\
The word “amen” is a most remarkable word. It was transliterated directly from the Hebrew into the Greek of the New Testament, then into Latin and into English and many other languages, so that it is practically a universal word. It has been called the best known word in human speech. The word is directly related — in fact, almost identical — to the Hebrew word for “believe” (aman), or faithful. Thus, it came to mean “sure” or “truly”, an expression of absolute trust and confidence.
The penultimate, or second to the last, verse of the Bible is also lovely – it reads, “He who testifies about these things says, “Yes, I am coming soon.”Amen! Come, Lord Jesus!” That is a promise from Jesus saying He WILL, in fact, return – and a reply from John – and all who read the book of Revelation saying – Yes, truly, verily – so be it – Please come soon, Jesus! And that, my friends, is quite simply – how the Bible ends in it’s last two verses, but that doesn’t fully cover the final chapter of the Bible, so let’s break it down and analyze it. I see FIVE major things in the final chapter of the Bible that we should discuss:
#1 – The eternal dwelling for the people of God will be in the New Jerusalem, which appears to be united with the new earth. In that place, there will NO LONGER BE ANY CURSE. No death. No pain. No anxiety, depression, turmoil, etc.NO COVID or any other sickness. No need for artificial light, and God Himself will be with His people – visible and tangible. This is unimaginably awesome! So, first the Bible ends with an incredible and amazing HOPE to look forward to.
#2 Upon the return of Jesus, there will be those who are on the inside of the city, with Jesus, and those on the outside. Unlike the kingdoms of this world, insider privilege is not based on wealth, fame, looks, power, or birthright, but upon grace and faith alone. Those who are washed in the blood and sacrifice of Jesus, and made clean will live eternally in the presence of God. Those who persist in their sin and reject the King of Kings will be outside eternally. This is sobering. So, secondly, the Bible ends with a DIVISION between those who are in Christ, and those who are outside of Christ. Don’t miss this division – because it is critical to understand that the Bible does not offer universal hope to all of humanity – but hope to those who are saved by the grace of Jesus. One might ask – “Why doesn’t God save everybody,?” but the better question might be – “why in the world would God save anybody?” And the answer, is His grace and mercy. But remember that Jesus often talked about the end of history, and when He did, He clearly noted that there would be a division of people – between the sheep and the goats – between His followers and those who did not follow Him, and Revelation affirms that truth from beginning to end.
14 “Blessed are those who wash their robes, so that they may have the right to the tree of life and may enter the city by the gates.15 Outside are the dogs, the sorcerers, the sexually immoral, the murderers, the idolaters, and everyone who loves and practices falsehood.
#3 The Word of God is NOT to be added to, or subtracted from. Human beings do not have the power, nor the authority, nor the wisdom to pick and choose from the truths of the Bible. There is a strong warning – with terrifying consequences – in Revelation to neither add more to ultimate truth, nor obscure or take away from it. The WHOLE counsel of God is His Word, and we must neither ignore parts of it that might be unpalatable for us, nor must we add our own thoughts and values to it. Thirdly, therefore, we see that the Bible ends with a fully loaded WARNING t0 not add to the book of Revelation specifically, nor the Bible itself generally.
18 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 that are written in this book. 19 And if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his share of the tree of life and the holy city, which are written about in this book.
#4 Justice, at its most basic, is giving people what they deserve, for good or for ill. In a sense, the Kingdom of God is built on mercy, in that we would all be destroyed if we truly got what we deserved. However, because Jesus paid the price for our sins, we don’t have to, and that dynamic apparently paves the way for some type of eternal and heavenly reward to be given to those who have used their life well in the service of Jesus. Let me be clear on that last sentence – I’m not saying that pastors or full time ministers will have an advantage in this regard. Any and all, no matter their profession, can give their life well in the service of Jesus, and a life lived in such a way – seeking first the Kingdom of God, rather than seeking first the kingdoms of this world – will be eternally rewarded. Thus, the Bible ends with an expectation of graceful justice and a REWARD to be given to those who have worked for it, in Christ.
12 “Look, I am coming soon, and my reward is with me to repay each person according to his work.
#5 Jesus is coming soon. This promise appears THREE times in this last chapter, so obviously it is very, very important. We remember from 1 Peter that our definition of ‘soon,’ and God’s definition might be a little different…or a lot different, but His return is sure and certain and promised. He is coming, and this is wonderful. Finally, then, the Bible ends with a PROMISE of RETURN for us to hope in and wait for!
20 He who testifies about these things says, “Yes, I am coming soon.”
What does the Bible end with? Hope, division, warning, reward, a promise of the Lord’s return and a blessing of the grace of Christ to everyone.
Bible Memory passage for the month of December: Revelation 5:12, “They said with a loud voice: Worthy is the Lamb who was slaughtered to receive power and riches and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and blessing!”
Happy by Mike Leite https://soundcloud.com/mikeleite
Creative Commons — Attribution 3.0 Unported — CC BY 3.0
Free Download / Stream: https://bit.ly/al_ha