If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you’ve most assuredly noticed lots of posts about Christ’s authority, and how we can have His strength for our battles here on earth. I’ve been studying Revelation. If you haven’t studied it, I urge you to do so. You will be blessed, and you will receive a quickening from the Holy Spirit to make certain that you know without question if you are a child of God. “Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written in it; for the time is near.” (Rev 1:3)
This was written over 2,000 years ago, so the scoffer in you might question that the time is near. The Greek word used for “near” is eggus, which in this case means “imminent”. It is a sure bet this prophesy will take place.
It is true that God is a God of love, mercy and grace. “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16) He has provided the only way to Him, but we must act on what we hear (Rom 10:8-10). If we have acted in faith, then it is apparent in how we act that we “love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind” because we keep His Word.
If, however, our love isn’t apparent, and instead are lukewarm, we may hear, “because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth” (Rev 3:16). Because He loves us, He wants us to be assured that we belong to Him (John 8:31-32). He is also a God of righteousness, justice and judgment. “As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent. Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me. To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne.” (Rev 3:19)
You can’t read the book of Revelation without seeing that God is love, He is full of grace and mercy, but also righteousness, justice and judgment. There is a heaven (Phil 3:20-21), hell (Matt 10:28), lake of fire (Rev 21:8), death and life (Matt 25:46), salvation (Rom 6:23), condemnation and judgment (Matt 25:41), bitterness and sweetness (Rev 10:10). We have the choice as long as it is “today” to choose to be forgiven and live in eternity with the Lord (Heb 3:13), or to love our sin and spend eternity tormented in the lake of fire. There is only one way to be forgiven: Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” (John 14:6) If you aren’t absolutely certain where you stand, please read Get Off the Fence! I pray the Holy Spirit will be at work in your heart as you read it.
In Rev 10:8-10, John is told to eat the little book (God’s Word) saying, “it will make your stomach bitter, but it will be as sweet as honey in your mouth”. We are to assimilate God’s Word for ourselves; not as to read a recipe, but to use it: cook it, eat it, and digest it. Jesus said, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God” (Matt 4:4).
If we are His children, then His Words are as sweet as honey, even when we are being chastened. “I have not departed from Your judgments, for You Yourself have taught me. How sweet are Your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!” (Ps 119:102-103) We are to feed on His Word prayerfully so that the Holy Spirit will give us understanding. “I have not departed from the commandment of His lips; I have treasured the words of His mouth more than my necessary food.” (Job 23:12)
Adrian Rogers asks: “Have you appropriated the Word of God? Have you assimilated the Word of God? If you have, then you will know that it will be both bitter and sweet. We hear so much about the love of God today that we are a world suffering from spiritual diabetes. The book of Revelation has some sad and horrifying things. This world is headed for judgment.” The Lord has said that He will not contend with us forever (Gen 6:3).
After we appropriate and assimilate the Word of God, we are called to disseminate it. “And He said to me, ‘You must prophesy again about many peoples, nations, tongues, and kings.'” (Rev 10:11) We are called to tell others not only about God’s love, but also His wrath. If only one side is given, we share only half-truths, which is a lie. Out of the abundance of His love, He has provided a way to be with Him for eternity. But without our heart-felt faith and repentance, we will face His judgment because He is a righteous God. Judgment day is imminent. Share Jesus with those you love so that they will taste the sweet, not the bitter.