Joy is Apocalyptic
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 (Rev. 22:17). The joy experienced that first Christmas will be matched at the end of time when heaven and earth shall be one. “Every knee will bow and every tongue confess that He is LORD”. Instead of a few shepherds, there will be un unnumbered throng who will acknowledge Jesus as the everlasting King of this world. “Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”
Thy dead shall live, their bodies shall rise. O dwellers in the dust, awake and sing for joy! For thy dew is a dew of light, and on the land of the shades thou wilt let it fall.
Revelation 22:1-5; 12-14.
Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, as clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb 2 down the middle of the great street of the city. On each side of the river stood the tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, yielding its fruit every month. And the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations. 3 No longer will there be any curse. The throne of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and his servants will serve him. 4 They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads. 5 There will be no more night. They will not need the light of a lamp or the light of the sun, for the Lord God will give them light. And they will reign for ever and ever. . . 12 “Look, I am coming soon! My reward is with me, and I will give to each person according to what they have done. 13 I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End. 14 “Blessed are those who wash their robes, that they may have the right to the tree of life and may go through the gates into the city. . . . 16 “I, Jesus, have sent my angel to give you this testimony for the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, and the bright Morning Star.”
“See you in the morning,” I would shout from my bedroom door as a child. Being a little superstitious, I always wanted to hear a reply from my parents before I would go to sleep. If there was no reply, I would say it a little louder, with more emphasis. If that didn’t work, I would find them in the house and say it again. I imagine they were a little surprised to see me out of bed, yet again, but it was an important ritual. I feared that if they didn’t respond, I WOULD NOT see them again, and that thought terrified me.
Jesus is saying, “See you in the morning” at the end of Revelation. He invites the world to join Him on that glad day. Coming as a helpless child, He fell in love with this world, experiencing the joys of family and friends. He walked the paths around Nazareth in all the seasons. He watched the sun rise and set each day, and felt the sun, rain and wind on his body as he grew into manhood. He knew the power of the water and the majesty of a summer storm. Yet, He left us behind and returned to the Father, making way for the centuries of people to come after him. His patience allowed me to be born.
We are told that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom, but we also know that we will be given physical bodies at the resurrection. I want to experience this world as it is healed and returned to the beauty of the Garden of Eden. He invites us all to come. C. S. Lewis said, “Aim at heaven and you will get earth thrown in. Aim at earth and you get neither. Your place in Heaven will seem to be made for you and you alone, because you were made for it. To every soul, God will look like its first love because He IS its first love.”
” Lord, we are meant for so much more than the few short years we are granted on this earth. We want to “see you in the morning” and experience completeness in the Garden of Eden that you have prepared for us. We look to that day when the whole world will acknowledge your kingship and worship at your feet. We come with joy, even though we have no idea what we’re in for.” Amen