SECTION SEVEN: JESUS CHRIST AND HIS BRIDE – Revelation 20 – 22:6

© Rosemary Bardsley 2015

OVERVIEW
The seventh parallel section of Revelation gives a summary overview of human history from the first coming of Christ to the second, and brings everything to its appointed conclusion and consummation. Here Genesis 3 is reversed: the devil is disposed of; death is disposed of. Tears, pain, sorrow are no more. Perfection is restored to the universe, including the perfect relationship between God and man which was always his purpose for us.

 

IMAGINE …
Suddenly all the screens go black and the sound seems to have been turned off. But you realize that this dark and silent void is only so by way of contrast. Certainly there are no secondary screens now, only the seven large screens that surround you. On the seventh screen there is a faint, almost indiscernible, pin point of light, and as your eyes become accustomed to the dimness you see that it is positioned on a huge map of the world spread across the seven screens. This one dim point of light is shining in Jerusalem. The rest of the world is in darkness. As you gaze at that small lone light, for one exceedingly brief moment it disappears altogether and there is total darkness. But then it flashes with a brilliance that almost blinds you, and at that same moment you hear again those loud ‘Hallelujahs’. The pinpoint of light is now quite intense, and you see it spreading dot by dot, gradually, gradually, across the whole world … Judea, Samaria, Syria, Ethiopia, Galatia, Macedonia, Italy … on and on these intense pin-points of light are spreading over that huge map. The darkness cannot stand before the Light, and as it spreads the Hallelujahs become louder and louder, building up and up until all the nations, all the tribes, all the peoples of the earth, all the language groups hidden away in the ghettoes of the mega cities and in the dark unknown valleys of the tropical jungles are reached by the light, and their voices join in the praise of God and of the Lamb. And then it is complete: the Light has reached the ends of the earth. There is no people group that has not heard the Gospel. The Light, the true Light, has come to them. The glory of God in Christ has been proclaimed to the ends of the earth. His praise is resounding in every language.

The praise continues unabated, but you are appalled by what you now see: quickly, oh so quickly, a murky darkness reclaims the earth trying to put out the light, but before you have time to think about this horrible thing, there is a terrifying and blinding cosmic flash, and there is a deafening roar, a Lion’s roar of intense ferocity. For a moment you cannot see anything at all. You cannot hear anything at all. Your senses have all been numbed. When your senses recover the screens surrounding you reveal a totally new reality: everything is changed, everything is new. There is no darkness left anywhere – it has ceased to exist. There are no enemies left – God’s final judgment is past. There is no pain. There is no suffering. There is no separation. The hand of God is reaching out to you and you now hear his voice saying ‘Come! All is ready! Enter into the joy of your Lord!’ For a moment you are afraid, you know that although you have believed in the Lamb, you are a sinner, unworthy, disqualified from such an invitation, from such joy. But then you realize that not only the whole universe but you yourself have been instantly transformed, instantly renewed, instantly perfected, as perfect and as pure as the Lamb. Nothing at all remains of your sin. And a smile that will never leave you brightens your face. Together with the uncountable multitude of the redeemed you step into life, life with God and the Lamb, forever.

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As you leave the media room, you hear the words of Christ calling out, assuring you ‘Yes, I am coming soon.’ After all you have seen and heard, after all you have learned from this book of Revelation, what can you say but ‘Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.’ And a deep sigh of joy-filled longing arises from the depth of your being, and the peace of God encompasses you. And you go back into your place in the ‘thousand years’, back into the suffering, the kingdom and the patient endurance that are yours because of the word of God and the testimony of Jesus.