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Investing Our Treasure in Heaven - The Book of Revelation
Week 44, 2017
In the last few weeks, we have focused on the power that enables God’s people to not only overcome the events of the last days — the events in this unfolding vision — but in all of life. Many people’s worst Armageddon will come in the form of an accident or other tragedies and disasters. The principles we’re studying here apply to all of life, not just the events outlined in Revelation.
The next thing said about those who overcome by the blood of the Lamb is that they added to this “the word of their testimony” (see Revelation12:11). How does the word of our testimony help us to overcome? As Jesus said, “out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks” (see Matthew12:34 NKJV). If our heart is filled with faith in the Son of God and the power of His cross, then we will proclaim it. There is power in that proclamation.
Are these testimonies that have caused many to be martyrs? Yes. That leads us to the third factor of why they overcame in Revelation 12:11: “and they did not love their life even when faced with death.” To the earthly minded, death is the ultimate defeat, but to those in Christ, death is graduation into our reward, and martyrdom is the most honorable way it can come.
Without question, death is an enemy and it will be done away with, but in this age it is a teacher of reality. Life is the ultimate gift, and those who prove willing to risk it, or give it, for the sake of the Gospel will be great heroes in heaven and carry great weight with the Lord.
How do we get to the place where we are willing to risk our life for the Gospel, or gladly suffer martyrdom rather than deny the Lord? We invest our treasure in heaven, in eternity. Where our treasure is there will our hearts be also. If we have been “seeking the things that are above” and are seated with Christ in the heavenly places, then we will gladly sacrifice anything in this life for the eternal purposes of Christ. So an important question is whether we are earth bound or heaven bound, and this is determined by that which has our devotion and worship. Such a devotion is helped by what is stated in Revelation 12:12:
"For this reason, rejoice, O heavens and you who dwell in them. Woe to the earth and the sea, because the devil has come down to you, having great wrath, knowing that he has only a short time."
From the point when the accuser is cast down to the earth, the experience is going to be different depending on where we are dwelling. When the devil is cast down, he comes with great wrath and will take it out on all that he can. At this time, the only safe place on earth will be abiding in Christ and doing His will.
The devil cannot strike Christ again, but Christ can strike the devil and destroy any of His works at any time. The devil would not be able to release his wrath on the earth if the Lord did not allow it, and He will for a short time. This too is working toward the ultimate purpose of the Lord to show the clear contrast between following the devil and his ways or following the Lord. After this history of the earth has been completed, all of creation, in every realm, will know what a huge mistake it is to not obey the Lord in all things, and worship Him alone.
next week 45