Friday, July 12, 2013

The Bride's Final Invitation

22:17-21 And the Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let him who hears say, “Come!” And let him who thirsts come. Whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely. 
    For I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: If anyone adds to these things, God will add to him the plagues that are written in this book; 
    and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part from the Book of Life, from the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.  
    He who testifies to these things says, “Surely I am coming quickly.” 
    Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus! The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.

The Spirit, refers to the spirit of Jehovah.  Christ said, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things. John 14:26.  That is God's method of communicating with us.  In this reference it is the spirit of Jehovah that is saying to non-Christians, Come.  Pay attention, I have warned you, flee from the wrath to come. Luke 3:7.  Repent of your sins, accept Christ as your slave master and worship Me!

The bride, namely, the born again believers also say to the non-Christians; come.  Come and take the water of life freely.  

Let each one who hears them say the same, Come.'  The Living Bible.

Come!  Some Bible teachers say that this is a prayer for Christ to come for His Church.  I think that it is not, because of the way this paragraph blends into one unit, and that unit is come take of the water of life freely.  This is not a prayer for Christ to return.  This is an invitation, by the spirit of God and by Christians for all to come to Christ; to repent; to have their robes washed in the blood of Christ, and to be prepared to enter into the holy city.

When one reads, let him take of the water of life freely, one tends to think of this word, freely, as meaning to enjoy a super abundance of the water of life.  Even though that meaning is possible for the Christian, the more accurate meaning of this phrase is given by Wuest, Vine and The Living Bible as without charge or gratis.  The same idea is expressed by Isaiah, Is anyone thirsty? Come and drink—even if you have no money! Isa. 55:1. The New Living Translation

Christ continues speaking and gives a solemn warning about changing the book by adding to or deleting from the words of this prophecy.  We need to remember that Christ was always more interested in the meaning of the word than in the actual words.  As we recall, being ritualistic and paying too much attention to technical detail was one of the problems Christ’s human peers had.  In studying The Apocalypse, the spirit of love, humility and worship is more important than exactly describing the shapes and activities of the strange creatures, the geographical locations and the timing of the events.  Christ would much rather have us invite sinners to the living water than to have us haggle about the technicalities found in The Revelation.

In 22:20, Christ again encourages his despairing, hurting, weary church.  He says, surely, I come quickly.  He did not say, I am coming soon, He said, I come quickly.  

    Then the church responds with the last prayer of the Bible, Even so, come, Lord Jesus.  We are waiting for the seventh trumpet blast, the last one, because we have made our robes white. 7:14.  Now, in anticipation, we say with Paul, I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day.  We repeat, Even so, come, Lord Jesus.  

Until then may the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all, Amen.
    Throughout this study I have indicated that I believe that Jehovah is a saucerian; next I would like to take a close look at many of the incidents and teachings in the Bible, and point out that the Bible actually substantiates my belief.  This may seem far fetched to you, but if you come along with me you might see that my thoughts are not as weird as they at first appear to be. Please join me at: