Tuesday in the Thirtieth Week of Ordinary Time

Revelation 22:16-21

The Spirit and the Bride Say, “Come”

Today we close not only the Book of Revelation but the Bible as well, and the last chapter of Revelation is a fitting way to do so.  It is an invitation from Jesus Christ himself who sent his angel to testify to everything written in this book for the churches—those seven in Asia Minor at the close of the first century and every church today.  And in addition to Jesus, “The Spirit and the Bride say, ‘Come.’”  The Triune God has issued an invitation and the Church of Jesus Christ proclaims it to all the world.  No one is excluded.  Indeed, we might even call it a summons.  Oh, people may resist, but they do so at their eternal peril.  After all, it is Almighty God who orders everyone to believe; someday He will order everyone to appear before His Tribunal to answer for their response to that summons.

Still, the invitation is made: “Come.”  And how beautifully it is spoken: “Let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who desires take the water of life without price.”  The gods of ancient paganism couldn’t care less about human beings qua human beings, nor do the gods of other religions today.  But the God and Father of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ says, “Come!”  Salvation is real and it is freely offered—at the price of faith and repentance.  That is, salvation is free but not cheap.  Ask the crucified one.

Then a stern warning is given that no one change the contents of “this prophecy.”  And that is what Revelation is—prophecy.  And as prophecy, it is given for the edification of the Church.  She is a pilgrim people.  She is not at home in the world nor does the world desire her.  But that’s okay with her; she belongs to another.  And she waits for him knowing that one day he shall come for her and their nuptials be complete.  For he has said, “Surely, I am coming soon.”  And she responds, “Come, Lord Jesus!” 

And so where Genesis began with a man and a woman being driven from a garden, Revelation ends with nations entering a city; where Genesis began with innocence; Revelation ends with redemption; where Adam failed Satan, Christ felled Satan; where Eve birthed the first man, Mary birthed the Last Man; and where once a tree proved man’s ruin, now a tree provides man’s repair.  What bookends Genesis and Revelation make!  And yet, we are enchanted so to move beyond this world up yonder—further up and further in.  And so we say with the love-stricken woman of the Song: “Make haste, my beloved, and be like a gazelle or a young stag on the mountain of spices (8:14).  And never stop praying, “Thy Kingdom Come.”  Amen.

Author: The Reformed Baptist

My name is Stephen Taylor, ordained Baptist minister of eighteen years pastoral experience with a Ph.D. in Historical Theology from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas. Better than that, I am married to a godly woman, Karla, who has been very patient with me since 1989. I have two daughters, both of whom I homeschooled for extended periods of time, who became godly young women, and who ran off and married godly young men, all of which is very proper. The oldest daughter has even seen fit to bless me with a grandson and a granddaughter, and my youngest daughter with a grandson, all three of whom are bundles of exceeding joy. As you can see, I am quite blessed. This website is dedicated to helping people grow in the wisdom and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ through the gift of writing that the Lord has given to me. It is specifically about helping His people grow in godliness, the theme you see repeated above. I write devotions with this aim and hope that they might be of some help to God’s people. Full disclosure: I am of a Reformed bent, meaning that my understanding of Scripture is primarily informed by the Reformers and their successors of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. However, as a student of church history and theology, I strive to remain true to that teaching handed down once for all unto the saints through every age of the Church. I like to think of myself as a “catholic” Christian, as the Reformers thought of themselves. At any rate, feel free to read, pray, and contact me if you wish, or correct me if need be. As you can see, I tend to follow the church year. Of course, I make no special claims about these devotions. I know very well that others have written better and plumbed the depths of God’s word with greater insight. But if my musings help someone draw closer to the Lord, well then, I have my reward. Blessings to you and may the God and Father of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ speak to you that word which He knows you especially need to hear. Grace & peace, Stephen Taylor

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