Wednesday, December 16, 2009

White as snow

Revelation 7:13-17: “Then one of the elders answered, saying to me, "Who are these arrayed in white robes, and where did they come from?"14 And I said to him, "Sir, you know." So he said to me, "These are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.15 "Therefore they are before the throne of God, and serve Him day and night in His temple. And He who sits on the throne will dwell among them.16 "They shall neither hunger anymore nor thirst anymore; the sun shall not strike them, nor any heat;17 "for the Lamb who is in the midst of the throne will shepherd them and lead them to living fountains of waters. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes."

In chapter 7 of Revelation, we are at a pause section of breaking of the seals. We get a glimpse of the awesome power that Almighty God displays by the refusing of the winds off the face of the earth in verse 1. There is a hush over the entire earth where no wind, breeze, or draft is felt. There is a silence and stillness, as like a calm before the storm. The book speaks of the 144,000 Jews that were sealed, surrendered their heart to the Lord Jesus during the tribulation period. The salvation of the Jews usher in the picture of the other tribulation saints that is seen in this glorious display of God’s grace even in the midst of great judgment. These saints are most likely an evangelistic product of the 144,000 Jews that became Christ-followers. The Great Tribulation is the final chance for the dark and sinful world to turn to God. This is the earth’s last chance to receive this gift from God. Some will; in fact, many will. The numbers of those who give their hearts to Jesus during this time is as the author writes, “a great multitude which no one could number”. They are coming out of the Great Tribulation and this is a continuous action. They continue to enter the throne room. Either by persecution or from the terrible natural disasters that will be wrought upon this earth.

God’s grace is seen even through the judgment of this Great Tribulation. The Tribulation saints that are spoken of here in 14 are those who die during the Great Tribluation. We see some special characteristics in this group of saints. First, we see that they are standing before the throne and before the Lamb, verse 9. They are not sitting like the saints in 4:4. Standing represents expectation of something more to come. They also wear no crowns. They are wearing white robes because they have been cleansed of their sins. It was only through the blood of Jesus that they were able to receive this gift of salvation. Once in the throne room they now have a special task and a holy occupation, “"Therefore they are before the throne of God, and serve Him day and night in His temple.”

Will there be a time when it is too late for a man or a woman to accept this gift of God. Yes, for the person who waits until a later time. There is no guarantee of tomorrow, or even the next breath you take. Will you live until the Tribulation? Will you live through the Tribulation? If you are not a Christian, there is no hope, no certainty, and no assurance. That is why God says, “today is the day of salvation” those who try to wait it out until a later date find themselves dead before they have made that choice. Someone once said for “those who wait until the eleventh hour, die at 10:30”. Do not wait for that last possible moment.
Tomorrows Readings:
Old Testament: Obad 1 New Testament Rev. 8

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