Fight the Good Fight
#25 How to Profit from Prophecy 09.05.21
Revelation 1:-1-3 NIV The revelation from Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants what must soon take place. He made it known by sending his angel to his servant John, 2 who testifies to everything he saw—that is, the word of God and the testimony of Jesus Christ. 3 Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of this prophecy, and blessed are those who hear it and take to heart what is written in it, because the time is near.
· The Bible promises profitability whenever it is embraced (think of Psalm 119). Revelation is the only book that claims this special blessing specifically for itself.
· The number varies with each expositor, but it has been said that as much as 25% of the Bible is prophecy or connects with prophecy in some vital way.
· We should understand prophecy as both “fore-telling” and “forth-telling.” In other words, sometimes prophecy reveals God’s pending action, and sometimes it reveals God’s desire or correction for His people.
· Some prophecy is conditional; some is irrevocable.
· We should distinguish between Words of God that are prophecy and words of men that can be prophetic.
o Logos and Rhema
o A wrong focus
I. We Can Allow Prophecy to Produce Praise
A. Because we unravel the Mystery of History.
1. My analytical lexicon
2. We are headed toward Revelation 11:15 “The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Messiah, and he will reign for ever and ever.”
3. “The Lamb Wins!”
B. Because we unravel the Mystery of Suffering.
1. Circumstances can make us believe “God is good,” or “God is bad.”
2. We can live in Romans 8:18 “I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.”
3. Just a few days before the accident…
Mommy, please don’t cry.
Jesus sings to me a lullaby.
We run through fields of shimmering gold.
He tells me stories of days of old.
I can run and play now and climb a tree.
Did you know He plays with me?
Jesus said I could write you.
He knows your days are sad and blue.
But Mommy, there’s no pain now; it’s gone away.
I’m home again, and I really want to stay.
I’ve seen Daddy pretend to be strong and brave,
But I see tears at the foot of the grave.
Daddy, don’t you know that I’m really not there?
I have a mansion here high in the air.
Mommy, hold Daddy close and be happy once more.
I’ll be waiting to greet you at Heaven’s door.
Together we’ll run through fields of gold.
And, you know what, Mommy? We’ll never grow old.
Mommy and Daddy, please don’t cry.
Jesus sings me a lullaby. (Author unknown)
C. Because we unravel the Mystery of Justice.
2. Look at 1 Corinthians 4:1-5 This, then, is how you ought to regard us: as servants of Christ and as those entrusted with the mysteries God has revealed. 2 Now it is required that those who have been given a trust must prove faithful. 3 I care very little if I am judged by you or by any human court; indeed, I do not even judge myself. 4 My conscience is clear, but that does not make me innocent. It is the Lord who judges me. 5 Therefore judge nothing before the appointed time; wait until the Lord comes. He will bring to light what is hidden in darkness and will expose the motives of the heart. At that time each will receive their praise from God.
a. There is man’s judgment.
b. There is personal judgment.
c. There is God’s judgment.
3. It doesn’t end with man’s judgment. It doesn’t even end with our judgment. But God will judge accurately, and we can rest in His vindication.
II. We Can Allow Prophecy to Produce Prayer.
A. Matthew 6:10 is becoming more and more important in my intercessory prayer - “your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.”
B. God wants to partner with us (ex. Psalm 122:6 “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: May those who love you be secure.”)
C. Exodus 36:36-37 Then the nations around you that remain will know that I the Lord have rebuilt what was destroyed and have replanted what was desolate. I the Lord have spoken, and I will do it.’ 37 “This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Once again I will yield to Israel’s plea and do this for them: I will make their people as numerous as sheep,
D. Revelation 22:20 He who testifies to these things says, “Yes, I am coming soon.” ”Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.”
III. We Can Allow Prophecy to Produce Purity.
A. 1 John 3:2-3 “Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Christ appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. 3 All who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure.”
B. We know we are God’s children.
1. But we don’t know much about what we will be like in eternity.
2. But we do know the best way to prepare is by living in moral and spiritual purity.
C. Colossians 3:1-7 Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. 3 For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. 4 When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. 5 Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. 6 Because of these, the wrath of God is coming. 7 You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. 8 But now you must also rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips.
D. 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24 May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. 24 The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do it.
E. Charles Blondin in 1859, “I never take my eyes off the silver star.”
IV. We Can Allow Prophecy to Produce Proclamation.
A. Revelation 19:10 “For it is the Spirit of prophecy who bears testimony to Jesus.”
B. Revelation 22:17 The Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let the one who hears say, “Come!” Let the one who is thirsty come; and let the one who wishes take the free gift of the water of life.