Thursday, January 24, 2019

Adult Sabbath School Lesson (January 19-25): Worthy is the Lamb

Glory only gets you so far.

Revelation 4, after all, makes following God sound like tons o' fun. Yes, you've got thunderous noise, a dazzling light-show, and a mosh-pit down front that's used for casting crowns.

(All of which suggests that some of us are going to be a little discomfited by just how lively worship will be in heaven!)

But when it comes to making all this happen "on earth as it is in heaven"?

That's where sacrifice comes in.

That's where suffering comes in.

Yes, that's why "the Lamb who was slain" takes over in Revelation 6.

And no, there's nothing wrong with glory.

Nothing wrong with good times.

Nothing wrong with thunderous praise-services.

But it's worth remembering that God's people "follow the Lamb wherever He goes."

Not just places of glory.

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Adult Sabbath School Lesson (January 12-18): Jesus' Messages to the Seven Churches

Seven churches.

And not one of them you'd want to attend.

Ephesus?

A church where the potlucks begin on time and they never run out of dessert . . .

But it's also a church that's cold -- ice cold -- with no love to go around.

The rest are no better:
  • Smyrna is poor and persecuted.
  • Pergamum has been taken over by the crazies.
  • Thyratira's utterly without standards of any kind.
  • Sardis is dead.
  • Philadelphia's another Smyrna.
  • And if you like hypocrites, then you're going to love Laodecia!
In short, none of these churches are perfect -- and all would give you a good reason to stay home on Sabbath morning.
Yet Jesus still loves them.
Still works with them.
Still has plans for them.
So what does He see in these churches that we don't?
And what does He see in your church that you don't?


Thursday, January 10, 2019

Adult Sabbath School Lesson (January 5-11): Among the Lampstands

Worst.

Retirement.

Ever.

John is on the island of Patmos, remember -- sent there as punishment for his persistence in following the "superstition" of Christianity.

Having followed Jesus for 60+ years, in other words, he's now stuck in a place with no friends, no family, and nobody to look after him.

No, nobody except Jesus.

But it's there on Patmos that Jesus reveals himself to John.

And it's there on Patmos we're reminded that Jesus will be with us always, "even to the ends of the earth."

Anyplace can be a blessing, in other words.

And just like John, we can be a blessing anyplace . . . 

Even on Patmos.