THE CONCLUSION OF THE BOOK Revelation 22:6-21
Our study of the book of the Revelation has taken us from the days of the early church in the past all the way into eternity in the future. John has been faithfully fulfilling the divine purpose he shared in the first verse of the book, “The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to shew unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass; and he sent and signified it by his angel unto his servant John,” Rev. 1:1.
John has been used of the Lord to reveal to God’s people the God’s plan for the future. We have seen the words of Rev. 1:19, where it says, “Write the things which thou hast seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter,” fulfilled in the pages of this amazing book.
The Lord has shown us how the church age will end. It will end with the church in apostasy, cold and dead, with Jesus on the outside. We are steadily moving in that direction today.
He has shown us what will follow after the church is removed from the world. There will be a terrible tribulation period that will engulf the world. Billions will die from war, disease and the tragedy of divine judgment. This age will also end with the Antichrist and Satan judged and sentenced to an eternity in the Lake of Fire.
We have even been given a glimpse of our own future. We have seen a place called Heaven, where death, disease, sin and Satan will be prohibited. We have been given a small foretaste of that wonderful place we will call home some day, we have arrived at the end of the book.
I. v. 6-10 A CONCLUDING WORD ABOUT THE SCRIPTURES
A. v. 6 The Scriptures Are Accurate – John is assured that everything he has seen is both “faithful and true”. There has not been a single exaggeration, nor has there been a single falsehood. Every prophecy made in this book will come to pass in the Lord’s time. One of the names given to Jesus in the book of Revelation is “Faithful and True”, Rev. 3:14; 19:11. That name declares Him to be trustworthy and worthy of faith. The Lord can be trusted! When He makes a statement, it is truth. When He makes a promise, it will come to pass. When He issues a prophecy, it will be fulfilled. God has tied the truth of His Scriptures to the integrity of His Name, Psa. 138:2”I will worship toward thy holy temple, and praise thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy truth: for thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name.”
You can believe the words of your Bibles! When God speaks, He speaks the truth! Every word in this book is “God-breathed”, 2 Tim. 3:16. You can trust your Bible!
B. v. 7-9 The Scriptures Are Authoritative – With the statement, “Behold, I come quickly”, the Lord declares His authority! Man can say what he wishes about the Bible and about God’s promises and prophecies, but God will have the final say! The Lord also reaffirms His promise to bless those who “keepeth” the words of the Revelation. That word has the idea of “guarding, protecting, and attending to carefully”. The Lord will bless the people who read, believe and live out the words of this book. That was His promise at the beginning, Rev. 1:3, and it is His promise at the end.
The Bible was not given to us so that we would have something to lay on the coffee table or in the rear deck of the car. The Bible was given to us to read, believe and live out. The Word of God has authority over our lives and we are to heed its words, John 14:15; James 1:22-23.
It is easy to become like the world and become guilt of worshipping this person or that thing. The only Person Who is worthy to be worshipped is the Lord God Almighty! (Matt. 4:8-10; Deut. 10:20)
C. v. 10 The Scriptures Are Accessible – John is commanded to “seal not” the book he has written. The word “seal” means “to conceal, or to keep secret”. Many years earlier, the prophet Daniel was commanded to seal up a book he had written, Dan. 12:4. The time for the fulfillment of Daniel’s prophecy had not arrived and it was not time to share it with the world.
John, on the other hand, is not to hide these things away and keep them secret. He is to publish them so that the world may hear the news that Jesus is coming and judgment is about to fall on this world.
The Bible we hold in our hands is a living witness to the God of Heaven. It reveals Him in all His glory, His power and His wrath. The Bible is not a closed book, but it is open and its message is available to all who will pick it up and read with an honest and obedient heart! If this book is closed, it is closed to those who refuse to know the Lord and to those who have been blinded by the devil, 2 Cor. 4:3-4.
One day, this book that is so hated by those who deny the Lord, will be the standard of judgment, John 12:48. If I were you, I would read this book and heed this book! After all, it is the Word of God, and it will stand for all eternity, Matt. 24:35.
I. A Concluding Word About The Scriptures
II. v. 11-16, 20-21 A CONCLUDING WORD ABOUT THE SAVIOR
A. v. 12, 20-21 A Word About His Advent – Again, we have the Lord’s promise that He is coming again! That was His promise before He left this world, John 14:1-3, and that is His promise now. He is coming!
We know that the Lord’s return will happen in two stages. First, He will return in the clouds above the earth to claim His redeemed Bride and take her home to Heaven, 1 Thes. 4:16-18. Then, He will return in power and glory to claim this earth for Himself. He will defeat all His enemies, establish His kingdom and rule in righteousness in this world.
For the saints of God, the thought of our Lord’s return offers peace and hope. Just the thought that we might be able to cheat death and leave here in the Rapture is a wonderful thought. It is no wonder that John prayed for the Lord to come, Rev. 22:20. Every child of God who loves the Lord and believes the Bible is looking forward to leaving this world in the Rapture.
B. v. 11-12, 14-15 A Word About His Awards – According to verse 12, the return of Jesus will be a mixed blessing. He is going to reward every man according to “his works”. That is, those who have received Him as their Savior will enjoy a time of blessing when He returns. He will reward them for their works and bless them for their service. Many faithful saints of God will hear Him say, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.” What a day that will be!
However, those who do not know Jesus will discover that the day of His return will spell their eternal doom. That is what He means in verse 11. When Jesus returns to this world, there will be no time to “get ready”. When He comes, how He finds the souls is how that soul will remain throughout eternity. If I were you, I would be sure that I was saved and ready to meet Jesus when He comes!
He pronounces a blessing on those who obey the Gospel in verse 14. He pronounces a curse on those who reject the Gospel in verse 15. Those who receive Him will enjoy the blessings of Heaven and of everlasting life, v. 14. While those who choose sin over a relationship with Jesus will be shut out of Heaven, v. 15.
The question you need to consider today is this: where would you be if Jesus was to return today? Are you saved? Are you ready to meet Him? Has your soul been made fit for Heaven by the blood of the Lamb? Is your name in the Lamb’s book of life? Jesus is coming! For some is will be a time of rejoicing. For many more it will be a time of horrible rejection and retribution.
C. v. 13, 16 A Word About His Authority – In these two verses, Jesus declares His ability to make these statements and to bring them to pass. He reminds us that He was here when everything began and that He will still be here when all things wind up, v. 13.
He reminds us that He is the King of Kings, v. 16. He is the “root” of David. That is, He is David’s ancestor. He is the “offspring” of David too. He is David’s descendent. Jesus is the ultimate authority! He founded the throne and He will occupy the throne.
He is the “bright and morning star”. To be called a “star” in that culture was to be “elevated”. The “morning star” signaled the advent of a new day. Jesus is reminding us that He, Who is greater than all, will return to destroy the darkness of this world forever. The light of His glory will fill both heaven and earth when He comes again!
Jesus can make the promises He made because He has the power and the authority to being them to pass. He is coming and He will rule and reign in righteousness and power some day!
l. A Concluding Word About The Scriptures
II. A Concluding Word About The Savior
III. v. 17-19 A CONCLUDING WORD ABOUT THE SPIRIT
A. v. 17a There Is An Appeal To Appear – Here we find the “Spirit” and the “Bride” inviting the Lord Jesus to “come”.
The Spirit of God desires nothing more than the glory of the Son of God, John 16:14. The Spirit of God longs for the Savior to return so that He might defeat His enemies and occupy His rightful place on the throne of the universe. The Spirit desires the glory of the Son of God. Therefore, the Spirit says, “Come!”
The Bride of Christ echoes the invitation of the Spirit. There is a longing in the heart of the redeemed for the advent of the Redeemer. How many here can identify with that desire? There are times when the burdens of life press us down and we long for Jesus to come. There are times when sin and Satan harass us and they seem so strong, and we long for Jesus to come. There are times when this world seems like a foreign place, and we long for Jesus to return. Well, hang on a little longer sweet Bride of Christ; your Redeemer is coming again to take you unto Himself.
B. v. 17b There Is An Appeal To Accept – Here on the last page of the last chapter in the last book of the Bible the Spirit of God offers one last invitation to lost sinners to come to Jesus for salvation. Anyone who sees their need of a Savior and understands that Jesus Christ can save their soul can be saved. They can drink the water of life and “pass from death unto life”, John 5:24. Even as the Lord brings things to a close, people are still being inviting to come to Him for their soul’s salvation.
Have you ever trusted Jesus as your Savior? If you haven’t, let me invite you again to come to Jesus and trust Him to save your soul! If you will come to Him, He will save you and prepare you for an eternity in Heaven, John 6:37-40.
C. v. 18-19 There Is An Admonition To Avoid – People are warned not to tamper with the words of this book. The Lord pronounces a curse on those who would add to or take away from the words of the Bible. This is not a new warning, but it is a warning that runs like a thread through the pages of Scripture, Deut. 4:2; 12:32; Pro. 30:5-6. In fact, the warning given here is two-fold.
· Men are warned not to add to the Bible – The Bible is a complete book. When the Bible was finished, the revelation of God to man was brought to an end. There are no more new revelations being given today! Every person who stands up and claims to have a “new word from the Lord” is guilty of adding to the Word of God! They are bringing the threat of divine judgment upon themselves.
One of the hallmarks of the charismatic movement has been the inclusion of new revelation. Someone will stand in a service and claim to have a word from God. That is dangerous and it is heresy! We have all the words from God that we will ever have, right here in the Bible!
These verses also let me know that every book written by man that claims to be Scripture is a lie of the devil! The book of Mormon; the writings of Mary Baker Patterson Glover Eddy, the founder of Christian Science, which is neither Christian nor scientific; the so-called “lost books of the Bible”; are all attempts by Satan to undermine our faith in the Word of God.
Those who add the Word of God will face divine vengeance and judgment. God does not want His Word tampered with!
· Men are warned not to subtract from the Bible – Many people are guilty of picking and choosing what they want from the Word of God. They may not add to the Bible, but they are guilty of subtracting from its words. For too many are guilty of diluting the message of God. They deny its truth; water down its doctrines; and ignore its warnings. They too will face divine judgment!
Many years ago J.A. Seiss, in his commentary on Revelation, said, “O, my friends, it is a fearful thing to suppress or stultify the word of God, and above all ‘the words of the prophecy of this Book.’ To put forth for truth what is not the truth,—denounce as error, condemn, repudiate, or emasculate what God himself hath set his seal to as his mind and purpose, is one of those high crimes, not only against God, but against the souls of men, which cannot go unpunished.” God does not take it lightly when people tamper with His Word. And, neither should we!
Let every preacher of the Gospel, every Sunday School teacher, everyone who leads in a devotion, take heed to how you handle the Word of God! It deserves our best effort! We should study it, meditate over it and present it in the power of the Spirit. If you lack that power, prostrate yourself before the Lord until He gives you that power! When you have found the meaning of His Word, then stand forth and proclaim it in the authority of the Spirit, being careful not to add to or take away from its divine message!