THE EVANGELICAL CHURCH WINNING ALL
5007 SOUTHSIDE DRIVE
LOUISVILLE, KY 40214
THEME: When the Curtain Opens For You
TOPIC: Living in the New Jerusalem
TEXT: Revelation 21: 1-8
Rev. (Dr.) Stephen K. Awoniyi
In reference to the man David Guzik, he narrates the New Jerusalem thus:
A New Heavens, a New Earth, and a New Jerusalem
All things made new.
The new heaven and the new earth.
Now I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. Also there was no more sea.
Now I saw: We can say that Revelation chapter 21 begins a new section of the Book of Revelation:
Jesus, the Lord of the Churches (Revelation 1:1 to 3:22)
Jesus, the Lion over the nations (Revelation 4:1 to 20:15)
Jesus, the Lamb among believers (Revelation 21:1 to 22:21)
The new perspective of this last section is glorious. “From the smoke and pain and heat it is a relief to pass into the clear, clean atmosphere of the eternal morning where the breath of heaven is sweet and the vast city of God sparkles like a diamond in the radiance of his presence” (Moffatt).
A new heaven and a new earth: The idea of a new earth, with a new atmosphere and sky is a familiar theme in the Scriptures. Many of the prophets, both Old and New Testaments, spoke to this new heaven and new earth.
For behold, I create new heavens and a new earth; and the former shall not be remembered or come to mind. But be glad and rejoice forever in what I create; for behold, I create a Jerusalem as a rejoicing, and her people a joy. (Isaiah 65:17-19).
Of old, You laid the foundation of the earth, and the heavens are the work of Your hands. They will perish, but You will endure; yes all of them will grow old like a garment, like a cloak You will change them, and they will be changed. But You are the same, and Your years will have no end. (Psalm 102:25-27).
Looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be dissolved, being on fire, and the elements will melt with fervent heat? 13 Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells (2 Peter 3: 12-13).
In today’s sermon the following topics will be narrated;
1. The Worship of God
What does “The Worship of God” really mean? In reference to the Apostle Paul, it could be explained thus:
Living Sacrifices to God
I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service.2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God (Romans 12: 1-2 (NKJV).
The above Scriptural passage from the Book of Romans didn’t only tell us the nature of true worship, but it gives us the result. In order words, this is a passage which all Christians ought to understand and meditate upon in their Christian walk. Generally speaking, the word "worship" in the Bible is translated from the Greek word, "proskuneo," which means, "to do reverence to."
Also, “to worship," means "to be devoted to doing something." That is, it speaks of who you serve with your life and who governs your life. The word “Worship” means more than just acknowledging God’s greatness, but also how to become more devoted to God because of His mercy and love for us. Brethren, be assured that without doing this faithfully, honestly, and obediently, we will fail in our relationship with our Almighty God.
In reference to Apostle John, the Epistle of Revelation continues by saying;
The Throne Room of Heaven
- After these things I looked, and behold, a door standing open in heaven. And the first voice which I heard was like a trumpet speaking with me, saying, “Come up here, and I will show you things which must take place after this.” 2. Immediately I was in the Spirit; and behold, a throne set in heaven, and One sat on the throne. 3. And He who sat there was[a] like a jasper and a sardius stone in appearance; and there was a rainbow around the throne, in appearance like an emerald. 4. Around the throne were twenty-four thrones, and on the thrones I saw twenty-four elders sitting, clothed in white robes; and they had crowns[b] of gold on their heads. 5. And from the throne proceeded lightnings, thunderings, and voices. [c] Seven lamps of fire were burning before the throne, which are the [d] seven Spirits of God.
6. Before the throne there was[e] a sea of glass, like crystal. And in the midst of the throne, and around the throne, were four living creatures full of eyes in front and in back. 7. The first living creature was like a lion, the second living creature like a calf, the third living creature had a face like a man, and the fourth living creature was like a flying eagle. 8. The four living creatures, each having six wings, were full of eyes around and within. And they do not rest day or night, saying:
“Holy, holy, holy,[f]
Lord God Almighty,
Who was and is and is to come!”
9. Whenever the living creatures give glory and honor and thanks to Him who sits on the throne, who lives forever and ever, 10. the twenty-four elders fall down before Him who sits on the throne and worship Him who lives forever and ever, and cast their crowns before the throne, saying:
11. “You are worthy, O Lord,[g]
To receive glory and honor and power;
For You created all things,
And by Your will they exist[h] and were created” (Revelation 4:1-11(NKJV).
The last verse 11 above reminds me of a song that says,
Thou at worthy O Lord
To receive glory honor and power
For though at created all things for their pleasure
They are our created
2. Our Service to the Lord
What does our service to the Lord stands for? This could be explained as the work we do in His name by using our gifts. The Gospel of First Peter explains it thus:
Suffering for God’s Glory
Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you; 13 but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ’s sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy. 14 If you are reproached for the name of Christ, blessed are you, for the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you.[d] On their part He is blasphemed, but on your part He is glorified. 15 But let none of you suffer as a murderer, a thief, an evildoer, or as a busybody in other people’s matters. 16 Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in this matter.[e]
17 For the time has come for judgment to begin at the house of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the end of those who do not obey the gospel of God? 18 Now “If the righteous one is scarcely saved, Where will the ungodly and the sinner appear?”[f]
19 Therefore let those who suffer according to the will of God commit their souls to Him in doing good, as to a faithful Creator (1 Peter 4: 12-19 (NKJV).
The Epistle of Ephesians also talks about Spiritual Gifts. The Scripture says,
But to each one of us grace was given according to the measure of Christ’s gift. 8 Therefore He says:
“When He ascended on high,
He led captivity captive,
And gave gifts to men.”[a]
9 (Now this, “He ascended”—what does it mean but that He also first[b] descended into the lower parts of the earth? 10 He who descended is also the One who ascended far above all the heavens, that He might fill all things.)
11 And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, 12 for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, 13 till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; 14 that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting, 15 but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head—Christ— 16 from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love (Ephesians 4:7-16 (NKJV).
The River of Life
And he showed me a pure[a] river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding from the throne of God and of the Lamb. 2 In the middle of its street, and on either side of the river, was the tree of life, which bore twelve fruits, each tree yielding its fruit every month. The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. 3 And there shall be no more curse, but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it, and His servants shall serve Him. 4 They shall see His face, and His name shall be on their foreheads. 5 There shall be no night there: They need no lamp nor light of the sun, for the Lord God gives them light. And they shall reign forever and ever (Revelation 22:1-6 (NKJV).
As the Lord Jesus Christ was ministering to a group of people in the Synagogue, His mother Mary, and His brothers and sisters were outside looking for Him. This group of people then said to Jesus Christ, your mother, and your brothers and your sisters are looking for you outside. Then Jesus Christ said thus;
………. “Who is My mother, or My brothers?” 34 And He looked around in a circle at those who sat about Him, and said, “Here are My mother and My brothers! 35 For whoever does the will of God is My brother and My sister and mother” (Mark 3: 33-35 (NKJV).
Dearly beloved, be assured that the Lord has called each one of us for a great duty entrusted into our hands. But the question is how honestly, truly, obediently, and faithfully are you committed to the mission entrusted into your hands? Or are you still saying you will do it later when you have the opportunity or time for it? Be assured that reaching the people in your neighborhood and serving the Lord faithfully is a great opportunity for bringing them to faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Beloved, if you have not been obedient to God’s mission give it a second thought, then repent of it and be truly obedient to His call now because tomorrow may be too late. Being obedient to God’s call gives you and me the opportunity of bringing the lost to faith in Christ Jesus. Be assured that our Almighty Father is on our side when we are truly, faithfully, and honestly obedient to His call. May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ keep, bless, and uphold you. Amen!