dailybiblereader2012

Putting God's Word into Practice…

Revelation 8:6-10:11 ~ There is One God

on July 25, 2014

These chapters are a description of the judgment that is going to be poured out on earth from the Lord.  They involve destruction and death in abundance.  It is easy to read it and think, “How can God be good and do so much damage?” or “Those poor people, they don’t deserve that.”  It is helpful to take our eyes off of the earth and man and put them on God!  He is the all-powerful creator of all things.  Everything we see and know is created by Him and for Him (Colossians 1:15-17).  Psalm 24:1 says, “The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof, the world and those who dwell therein.”  God is holy, perfect, and righteous.  However, even our best works can’t hold a candle to His purity.  We are fallen, imperfect, sinful people.  Just last week, as I was studying Psalm 28, I learned a new description of a wicked person–one who does not regard the Lord or His works.  That includes every person at some point in our lives.  It is a sin to ignore or not acknowledge God’s power, glory, sovereignty, and authority; and the penalty of sin is death.  Even in the midst of divine judgment and wrath, God was merciful to give people more chances to repent.  But we read in Revelation 9:20, “The rest of mankind, who were not killed by these plagues, did not repent of the works of their hands nor give up worshiping demons and idols of gold and silver and bronze and stone and wood, which cannot see or hear or walk, nor did they repent of their murders or their sorceries or their sexual immorality or their thefts.”

The problem with most of us is that we don’t see our sin as bad or even see the things we are pursuing as idols.  So we just keep moving forward to this time of judgment without even realizing that is WILL happen and only those who have turned from their sin and received Jesus’ forgiveness through the shedding of His blood on the cross and who believe in the resurrection will be rescued from this coming judgment.  The message of repentance is hard to proclaim.  Like Revelation 10:10 says, it is like honey on the tongue but bitter in the stomach.  Repentance is sweet, refreshing, life-giving, freeing, yet it is bitter because it requires us to humble ourselves, admit we are wrong, and submit our hearts to the Lord. And even the message of judgment is difficult. The fact that we can escape judgment is sweet.  When we hear about facing judgment, it is bitter.

My husband gave the best illustration to help me understand the justice of God’s judgment.  If someone owns a Ferrari and they let me drive it and I drive it like I stole it.  When I return it trashed and disrespected, they have every right to take me to trial and make me pay for what I did.  It is so with God.  This world belongs to Him, and we belong to Him.  He put us here, yet we live our lives like they belong to us instead of just being on loan.  He has every right to exact judgment on us when don’t live like we are His. We will have to give an account for how we’ve trashed what He has given us and disrespected His “ownership” of us.

In summary, judgment is coming from the Righteous Judge, and He provided the only way of escape by humble repentance!  He is just and He is merciful!

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