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Devotions for Life

He’s Worthy

Revelation 5:1-14

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No one in heaven or on earth or under the earth was able to open the scroll and read it.

Then I began to weep bitterly because no one was found worthy to open the scroll and read it. But one of the twenty-four elders said to me, “Stop weeping! Look, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the heir to David’s throne, has won the victory. He is worthy to open the scroll and its seven seals.”
 
Then I saw a Lamb that looked as if it had been slaughtered, but it was now standing between the throne and the four living beings and among the twenty-four elders. He had seven horns and seven eyes, which represent the sevenfold Spirit of God that is sent out into every part of the earth. (Revelation 5:3-6)

Reflect

In John’s day, books were written on scrolls—pieces of papyrus or vellum up to 30 feet long, rolled up and sealed with clay or wax. The scroll that John sees contains the full account of what God has in store for the world. The seven seals indicate the importance of its contents.
 
Jesus is pictured as a Lion (symbolizing his authority and power) and a Lamb (symbolizing his submission to God’s will). One of the elders calls John to look at the Lion, but when John looks he sees a Lamb. Christ the Lamb was the perfect sacrifice for the sins of all mankind. He was worthy to break the seals and open the scroll by living a perfect life of obedience to God, dying on the cross for the sins of the world, and being raised from the dead to show his power and authority over evil and death. He conquered sin, death, hell, and Satan himself. Therefore, he can be trusted with the world’s future. Christ the Lamb won the greatest battle of all. But as the Lion, he’ll return in victory to lead the battle where Satan is finally defeated (Revelation 19:19-21).
Respond
 
Which of Jesus’ roles—Lion or Lamb—brings you the most comfort? How has Jesus been victorious in your life or especially comforting to you recently?

 



Gifts of Love

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son” (John 3:16a).
 
Valentine’s Day is a special day, one of professing love. Just about everyone from little children to senior citizens give cards that say “I love you.” Lovers give all sorts of gifts from diamonds to chocolates.
 
Valentine’s Day is named after one of three early Christian Martyrs. The one I like is the one who continued to perform weddings for young couples when the Roman Emperor forbid marriage for military aged men. That story to me is the love connection.
 
We like to express our love with material things to loved ones. Of course, we like to be on the receiving end as well. However, love is best expressed in self-sacrifice for another. One writer explained when he knew that his wife really, really loved him. Unbeknownst to her, he watched her pouring the soda into their glasses at supper. One bottle was old and flat, the other new. She poured the flat soda into her glass. That little act spoke volumes to him about her love for him.
 
God loves His creation, especially people. But we chose to turn our back on Him. God still loves us with a love that is beyond anything we have experienced in this world. He loves us even when we hate Him (Romans 5:6-8).
 
The Father sacrificed His beloved only begotten Son. God demonstrated His love by that sacrifice, his gift of love to each one of us. It is a gift that calls for our response to love Him back. It is only when we understand the cost and our need of redemption that we respond with love and gratitude.
 
Song: “The Love of God” by Lehman
 
Loving Father, God, I am humbled and awestruck by the extent of Your love for me. Sometimes I fail to love You back. When I do, remind me of Your sacrifice of Your Son, the gift of love that You gave me. In the name of Jesus. Amen.
 
Ed Wittlif, Denver, Colorado
es_witt_504@yahoo.com

 



Everything New

Revelation 21:1–22:6

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Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the old heaven and the old earth had disappeared. And the sea was also gone. And I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven like a bride beautifully dressed for her husband.
I heard a loud shout from the throne, saying, “Look, God’s home is now among his people! He will live with them, and they will be his people. God himself will be with them. He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever.”

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