Manual A King and His Kingdom

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Matthew focuses on the royal nature of the Lord and how He established His Kingdom here on earth. Our course will examine Jesus as King and the nature ofโ€‹.
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And according to Revelation 7, it will eventually complete that task. The third way that Revelation highlights God's benevolent protection in spiritual war is by reminding us that when Christ returns, God will end this battle by finalizing his victory over our spiritual enemies by utterly destroying them. Revelation gives us confidence that when Christ returns, Satan and his followers will be ultimately destroyed. They will be rendered entirely powerless to tempt and trouble us. Their punishment will limit them so greatly that it will be impossible for them to fight any longer. Revelation 17 and 18 describe the punishment of the great prostitute, Babylon, and the punishment of all the kings and inhabitants of the earth that followed her.

Revelation 20 recounts the final defeat of the dragon and his armies. And Revelation 21 and 22 teach that the new heaven and new earth will be completely free from the presence of evil. When all God's enemies have been rendered powerless, the great spiritual war will end, and God's faithful people will live in uninterrupted peace.

This will be the ultimate expression of God's benevolence and protection; we will be completely safe forever. Throughout the book of Revelation, we can see God's benevolence in providing for and protecting his people. Jesus purchased victory for Gods' people on the cross, and rose again so that his victory could be applied to all God's faithful people. At the present time, the church experiences that victory in part.

Sam's Musings

We have God's sure promise that when Christ returns, we'll fully enjoy that victory. All Christ's enemies will be judged, and we'll receive our glorious inheritance in the new heavens and the new earth. So far in our lesson we've examined the covenant kingship of God and Christ as suzerain and vassal kings, and explored how Revelation highlights God's benevolence toward his covenant people.

So, at this point, we're ready to turn to our third major topic: the loyalty God requires us to demonstrate as citizens of his kingdom. As we've seen, at least three features of our relationship with God parallel ancient suzerain-vassal treaties or covenants: God's benevolence toward us as his people; the loyalty or obedience God requires from us as his vassal kingdom; and the consequences of blessings in response to obedience, and curses in response to disobedience.

At this point we want to focus on the loyal service God expects of the people he saves by his grace. When he wrote the book of Revelation, the apostle John was conscious of the church's covenant relationship to God. And one of the reasons he wrote was to encourage the churches in Asia Minor to remain loyal to God throughout the challenges they faced.

He wanted them to remember all the kindness God had shown them, as well as the blessings God offered, so that they would live in faithful obedience to the Lord. You'll recall from a previous lesson that the churches addressed in Revelation faced many temptations to compromise their loyalty to God. John's original audience faced at least four different types of temptation to be disloyal to God.

A King and His Kingdom!

First, the trade guilds had their own patron deities, and they required their members to worship these false gods. This tempted believers to engage in idolatry in order to gain the opportunity to work and conduct business. Second, the Roman Empire required its subjects to worship its gods and its emperor. This tempted Christians to worship pagan gods in order to avoid punishment from the government.

Third, Judaism put pressure on Christians to abandon Christ. Judaism was given a special exemption from pagan worship, and Christianity was originally covered by this exemption. But as Judaism distanced itself from Christianity, this exemption ceased to apply to the church. This tempted many Jewish Christians to abandon Christ and return to traditional Judaism, in order to avoid Roman persecution.

A King and His Kingdom!

Fourth, wayward Christians throughout the Roman Empire compromised their faith by engaging in pagan practices and sexual immorality. And they encouraged others to follow them in their sin. These temptations posed significant challenges to the loyalty of churches in Asia Minor.

In this context, one important reason that John wrote was to undercut their loyalty to these rival groups, and to strengthen their loyalty to God. Our examination of the theme of loyalty will focus on two primary expressions of loyalty found throughout the book of Revelation: perseverance and worship.

Let's look first at Revelation's call to perseverance. Remaining faithful to God in belief and actions despite temptation, opposition or discouragement. To persevere is to overcome any and all forces that would incline us to abandon our faith in God or to rebel against him in a total and final way.

In response to the many temptations believers in Asia Minor faced, John repeatedly called his readers to persevere or overcome. These exhortations can be found in every letter to the churches in Revelation 2 and 3, and throughout the rest of the book, too. In the letters, we see them in Revelation , 11, 17, 26; and , 12, We also see them in places like Revelation ; ; ; ; ; and , 11, It's no exaggeration to say that perseverance is one of the most prominent themes in the entire book of Revelation. In the central part of Revelation we see the language of overcoming a lot, just like we see it with the letters to the seven churches.

In and , we see the beast, or the Evil One, overcoming the saints, or overcoming God's spokespersons, the witnesses for God, killing them. And yet, in we get a heavenly perspective on the same conflict, and that is that they overcame him โ€” in context, they overcame the devil โ€” they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives even to the point of death. And Revelation goes on to speak of how these overcomers are standing before God's throne because they've triumphed over the beast like the Lamb who was slain.

He's the conquering lion, but he's also portrayed as a lamb. Like the Lion who was the Lamb who overcame by martyrdom, these God's people overcome not by fighting the world, but they overcome through faith in God and through their testimony, because even when the world does its worst to us, we overcome because we belong to God himself. The seven churches of Asia Minor each had different tests and that each were called to overcome. We each have different tests.

Prayer, the King & His Kingdom: Roy Godwin

We might be jealous of somebody else's tests or dreading somebody else's test, but we have our own, and yet each of us is called to overcome. Whatever the test is, the promise comes at the end of the book of Revelation in 21 that those who overcome, God says, "I will be their God and they will be my child. Craig S. We'll mention five types of perseverance that John highlighted in the book of Revelation, beginning with perseverance in faith.

Faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see Hebrews It can be hard to trust God when the circumstances of our lives don't reflect the types of protection, provision and blessing we read about in Scripture. When things are going badly for us, it's easy to think that we've made a mistake, that we've been deceived, that the God of the Bible isn't real, and that we don't owe him any loyalty.

Matthew: the King and His Kingdom | A Part Bible Study Featuring Jeff Cavins - Parousia Media

And this was just as true in the first century as it is today. So, one of John's great concerns as he wrote the book of Revelation was to convince his readers that things were actually much different than they appeared on the surface. The world was much worse than it looked; and the kingdom of God was much better than anything they could imagine. John's original audience faced many temptations to believe that things like pagan gods and the Roman Empire were a great source of blessing.

Outwardly, these were powerful forces that offered security, pleasure, and prosperity. And by contrast, the Christian life was hard. Believers had difficulty in business. They were persecuted by the government. And the church didn't offer them anything like the worldly pleasures they could get from the pagans. These temptations made it easy for the churches in Asia Minor to abandon their faith in God, and to exchange it for faith in the world.

In response to these circumstances, John insisted that his readers be strong in faith. He wanted them to be confident in their belief that the systems of the world weren't as good as they looked, and that as hard as the Christian life might be, it's the only road to true security, pleasure and prosperity. This is why the book of Revelation repeatedly describes worldly, sinful powers and desires as monstrous, ugly, deceitful, and corrupt. Yes, the kingdom of Satan and his followers wears a beautiful costume.

But if we could see it as it really is, we'd be repulsed by its hideousness. And the same thing is still true today. No matter how tempting sin is, and no matter how difficult and discouraging life can be as a follower of Christ, it's critical that we persevere in our belief that God is who he says he is, that he will do what he says he will do, and that he will bless us if we remain loyal to him. Although perseverance in faith is the most important type of perseverance, the book of Revelation emphasizes that true faith manifests itself in other types of perseverance, too.

For example, a second type of perseverance mentioned in Revelation is steadfast love for God. The book of Revelation calls all believers to keep their love for God alive and strong. For instance, in Revelation , the church in Thyatira was praised for expressing their perseverance in love and faith. By contrast, in Revelation , the church in Ephesus was rebuked for losing its first love. This failure was so great that the Lord threatened to remove their lampstand, that is, he threatened to eliminate the church.