Lesson 65 – Revelation 22:12-21
Lesson 65 – Revelation 22:12-21
Revelation 22:12-13 Again, the Lord tells us that He is coming quickly. This is concept of immanency that it could happen at any time. We are to prepare because His coming could be today and when He comes back, He is coming to judge man. The judgment will be based upon two things. It will be based on what we have done with the life and gifts that we have received.
The Lord is the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end of all things. He is both the Creator and Finisher of the universe. He spans all of time He began all things and He finishes all things. When He comes, Jesus will render to every man according to what he has done. Believers’ eternal rewards will be based on their faithfulness in serving Him in this life. Their works will be tested, and only those with eternal value will survive (1 Corinthians 3:9-15; 2 Corinthians 5:9-10).
The rewards believers enjoy in heaven will be capacities for serving God; the greater their faithfulness in this life, the greater will be their opportunity to serve in heaven (Matthew 25:14-30). Knowing that, John exhorted believers, “Watch yourselves, that you do not lose what we have accomplished, but that you may receive a full reward” (2 John 8). The knowledge that Jesus could return at any moment should not lead Christians to a life of idle waiting for His coming (2 Thessalonians 3:10-12).
Revelation 22:14 There is a textual problem here in the King James Version of the Bible. The best Greek manuscripts say this: “Blessed are they who wash their robes,” not “blessed are they that do his commandments.” The only way a person can ever eat of the tree of life is to wash his robes in the blood of Messiah. No person is ever saved by keeping commandments.
Believers, of course, do keep the commandments of God; they keep His commandments because they love Messiah and want to follow Him, and know that His commands are for our good as well as the good of others. They do not keep the commandments in order to be saved. They believe that God has forgiven their sins through the death of Jesus on the cross in order to be saved. The person who has washed his robes in the blood of the Lamb has the right to eat from the tree of life and is qualified to enter into the New Jerusalem (Hebrews 9:12-14; 1 Peter 1:18-19). Soiled clothes represent sinfulness in Isaiah 64:6 and Zechariah 3:3, whereas Psalm 51:7; Isaiah 1:18; and Titus 3:5 speak of the cleansing of sin that accompanies salvation.
Revelation 22:15 Revelation tells us who will be rejected by the Lord. Those outside are the dogs. In ancient days the wild dog was a symbol of roaming about, of being mean and savage, dirty and immoral. the first time sinners are called dogs is in Deuteronomy 23:18, where male homosexual prostitutes are in view. This is not to infer that these people will be outside the gates of heaven trying to get in, but a reminder of those who will be eternally separated from heaven.
Revelation 22:16 We are reminded again that this message of Revelation is proclaimed by Jesus Himself. He is the Author of the message of Revelation. He is the “root and offspring of David.” This means that He is the root of David, the root of life, the One who gives life to man.
Therefore, He is the One who gave life to David. But He is also the offspring of David. He is the promised Messiah who was to come from the seed and line of David. He is the promised King who was to come and rule over the world from the throne of David. He describes Himself as the “bright morning Star.” The first star to arise is the brightest star, the brightest of all. Jesus is the brightest of all beings in the entire universe. He is the very Son of God Himself. He is referring here to the prophecy of the Messiah: “There shall come out of Jacob a star” (Numbers 24:17). Jesus is declaring that He is the promised Messiah.
Revelation 22:17 The Lord once again offers the invitation to come to Him and His reward. The bride is the reunion of Israel and the nations, the host of true believers scattered over the earth. Both the church and the Spirit of God cry out, “Come.” The thirsty need to come, those who want to be refreshed and find, satisfaction, and renewal that comes from the water of life. It is a call to “Come, come to Jesus, who is the water of life (Isaiah 55:1; Matthew 11:28; Luke 14:17; John 4:13ff).
Revelation 22:18-19 We are warned that the message of Revelation must not be tampered with. The warning is solemn and emphatic that none should add to the words of this book or take away from the words of this book. Like Deuteronomy 28, there is a curse for this kind of disobedience. God will place upon him the curses spoken of in this book as well as take away his share in the tree of life remove his place in the Heavenly Jerusalem and take his share out of all the promises of this book of Revelation (Deuteronomy 4:2; 12:32; Proverbs 30:6).
The canon of Scripture was closed at the end of the first century when Revelation was finished. There have been many who as false prophets both before and after who have brought alleged new revelations as the Montanists did in the early church and Joseph Smith, Mary Baker Eddy, and other false prophets have done in recent times. These false prophets will face divine judgment as they have been responsible for leading millions from the truth of God’s Word.
God’s judgment will be equally severe on anyone who takes away from the words of Scripture as the heretic Marcion did in the early church and liberal higher critics have done in modern times. No true believer would ever deliberately tamper with Scripture.
Those who know and love God will treat His Word with the utmost respect. They will say with the psalmist, “O how I love Your law!” (Psalm 119:97; Psalm 119:113, 163, 167; John 14:23); That does not, of course, mean that believers will never make errors in judgment or mistakenly interpret Scripture incorrectly or inadequately. The Lord’s warning here is addressed to those who engage in deliberate falsification or misinterpretation of Scripture.
Revelation 22:20-21 The message of Revelation closes with the greatest of all assurances. The assurance is twofold. Jesus is the One who reveals and testifies to the things written in Revelation. Then Jesus declares: “I am coming soon.” His coming is imminent, just as Revelation and the rest of the New Testament teaches. John speaks for all true believers when he says Amen. Come, Lord Jesus, since Believers are those “who have loved His appearing” (2 Timothy 4:8).
Scoffers may ask, “Where is the promise of His coming? For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all continues just as it was from the beginning of creation” (2 Peter 3:4). But things will not continue forever as they are. Jesus will return, just as Revelation predicts. If the all that has been spoken of in this book has not caused men to turn to Him, they will have to face the horror of judgment without the provision and protection that God has provided in His Messiah.
The last words of the Bible speak of the message completely in the entire Scriptures, the grace of the Lord Jesus be with all.