January 10 - Message Update

“The Purpose of Salvation” - Revelation 19:1-10 – Pastor Brian

What is the purpose of salvation in Christ?

 

People are struggling due to depression, anxiety, stress, and sadness caused by the challenges of this past year. Nationwide, hundreds of thousands of people have died from COVID 19. An International Journal of Medicine confirms that, “Mental health consequences of the COVID-19 crisis including suicidal behavior are likely to be present for a long time and peak later than the actual pandemic. To reduce suicides during the COVID-19 crisis, it is imperative to decrease stress, anxiety, fears and loneliness in the general population.”  Fellow brothers and sisters in Christ, may we see the importance of being a beacon of light in this present darkness through our study of Revelation that encourages us to hang onto the hope we have in Christ Jesus. 

 

Followers of Jesus are privileged to know that in the end, God the Father forever overcomes any hardship, sadness, injustice, loneliness, depression, anxiety, etc. That every painful ordeal is temporary, and in the end, God will overcome. 

 

Those whose names are in the Book of Life are privileged to know that salvation in Christ guarantees our end is triumphant and glorious. From the very first verse, it states this book of the Bible is about the revelation of Jesus Christ.  This passage reveals the purpose of salvation in Jesus in depth so our question is… What is the purpose of salvation in Christ?

 

To offer praise to the LORD for His judgment of all evil.  (vv.1-3) In the end, God will overcome the evil we see and experience today.  He will eliminate the suffering of injustices, cruelty, and wickedness. Hallelujah! Praise be to God for this privileged information and promise to bring evil to a final and complete end!

 

Verse one begins with, “After this,” referring to what happened previously to hearing the loud voice of a great multitude. Chapter 18 was about the utter and complete destruction of Babylon, (the great prostitute and the Beast) representing the evil world system.  Followers of Christ are called to, “Come out,” from the influences of these destructive powers and to faithfully remain in God.  Now in Revelation 19 there is great rejoicing because God has judged the great prostitute (v.2).  We can shout, “Hallelujah! Praise be to God!” …who eternally judges her wicked ways in the lake of fire (v.20) and the smoke goes up forever and ever. (v.3)   

 

Praise be to God, who will judge and remove all evil from the world. We are assured that these words of Revelation are true because Jesus has already demonstrated His power to overcome evil.  In Luke 4:7, Satan, the epitome of all evil, tempts Jesus with the glories of the world to distract Him from the glory of God, but Jesus overpowers these feeble attempts with the Word of God.  Satan deceives himself into thinking he is more powerful than God and worthy to be worshiped.  Satan, in turn, tries to fool followers of Christ into believing the same thing.

 

Hallelujah, Praise be to God, that though there is temptation to think all is lost and we will never see the end of all the cruel and immoral ways of this world, God will judge every sin.  For the Christian, we can find comfort in this truth, that God will exercise judgment and vengeance for every wrong in this world. But for those who reject Jesus, God’s wrath will be felt.

 

This breaks my heart.  I do not wish God’s final justice upon anyone and wish I could prevent the punishment described in this Book, but only Jesus can save.  My hope and prayer for you who don’t yet know salvation is that you would receive and believe in Jesus who died on the cross and was resurrected three days later to forgive your sins that you would live in eternal peace with God. We can praise God for His utter and complete banishment of all evil. 

 

Our next point in answering… What is the purpose of salvation in Christ? Is… To offer praise to the LORD for His salvation of saints.  (vv.4-5) Hallelujah! All you His servants or saints, we are called to give praise to God!  Though He is all powerful, all knowing and everywhere, He is a personal God.  He knows us so well that He knows the number of hairs on our head.  Almighty God loves and knows each one of us both the good and bad, yet we are saints because of Jesus and called upon to praise Him.


There isn’t a definitive agreement of who these 24 elders are, but some scholars believe they represent the Church (every believer) of the present age, which is the age from creation to the second coming of Jesus.  The four living creatures seem to refer to angels who praise God. Still another voice, apparently coming from an angel, exhorted, “All you His servants,” (19:5) “Join in this praise.” This implies that in both heaven and earth all those in God’s family are to praise Him for His destruction of evil and salvation from all depravity.

 

Often when we hear the word privilege, our first thoughts are about material wealth.  But how often do we think of ourselves as privileged because we know Jesus? Sometimes we forget that we are spiritually privileged and because we have been saved by Jesus there is purpose. This is such good news that God wants us to share this privilege and purpose of salvation. We can praise God for the utter and complete banishment of all evil and saving us from its power. 

 

Our final point in answering… What is the purpose of salvation in Christ? Is… To offer praise to the LORD for His unity of the Church.  Hallelujah! Praise be to the LORD for the Church (the Bride) will be forever united with Him. (vv.6-8) Hallelujah, Jesus the Lamb of God will become one in marriage to the bride, the Church, who are God’s chosen.  With that understanding, followers of Jesus Christ will be joined together with Jesus in the most beautiful, extravagant wedding ceremony ever!  The Bride has been prepared by the righteous deeds of the saints for this spectacular union.

 

When all evil has been cleaned up and eliminated, there will be the grandest wedding ceremony ever seen.  Unlike in our present circumstances where division and discord are rampant.  Sadly, there is disharmony even among brothers and sisters in Christ.  The events of this past Wed, when America’s Capitol was under siege, are a glaring example of how disunited we are.  But Hallelujah! Praise be to God that we can offer praise to God, for we as the Church or the Bride in today’s text, will be united as one with Jesus, the Lamb.  All of His disciples, saints and believers will be joined together forever with Christ the Lord. (v.7)

 

Christ followers are being prepared for that day even today.  Every righteous deed of the saints, every good work we do in the Lord are how we, the Church, are preparing for this amazing event.  Hallelujah! Praise be to God that we are not left alone as God is preparing us by giving opportunity to complete righteous deeds.

 

SanLo is doing its part through continuing to create a culture of care by living out John 13:34, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.”  The gospel community of SanLo has been preparing itself as the Bride since 1929 and especially during 2020 and continues to do so. SanLo is caring for one another in order to love as Jesus loved. Hallelujah! Praise be to God for giving us the opportunity to prepare for the greatest wedding of all time when the Lamb and Bride are forever united.

 

Besides praising God for overcoming evil, saving us and being united with Christ for eternity, the purpose and privilege of salvation is that we get to, “Worship God!”  (vv.9-10) The Apostle John is so overwhelmed by the words of God that he falls before the angel to worship him but is told, “Worship God!”  That is the same command for us. What is the purpose of salvation in Christ? Ultimately, we are saved… To worship the LORD our God. (vv.9-10) How are we to express our gratitude and praise to God for all that He has revealed?  One way we can worship and honor God is to grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ,” as directed in 2 Peter 3:18.

 

We grow in our relationship with Jesus by spending time with Him and accepting His love.  We love Jesus for dying for us so that we would have eternal life. We love Jesus for His grace to cover our wrongs without judgment or condemnation.  We love Jesus because He promises us a reunion in Heaven with those who are no longer with us on earth. Jesus’ love not only frees us from the judgment of sin, but it also promises God’s children a bright future where there is comfort and hope.

 

What is the purpose of salvation in Christ? For those who have or are currently struggling with the pain and heartache of these times, there is hope knowing that ultimately, we will be eternally saved from all judgment, sadness and suffering because of Jesus.  Hope in Jesus leads us to worship God, the privilege and purpose of salvation.  Let’s resolve to share the good news of Jesus in 2021, “to help decrease stress, anxiety, fears and loneliness in the general population.”

 

Praise Songs: Jesus is Better, Be Thou My Vision, I Give You My Heart, Cornerstone, Doxology