In our lesson today, we looked at the conclusion of God’s story for His Daughters – the account of the final restoration of the heavens, the earth, and all the nations (Rev. 4). We learned that the restoration process comes wholly through the Son, the Lion of Judah, the Root of David, the Perfect Lamb of sacrifice (Rev. 5). And we learned that directly prior to the restoration of his people, God must first eradicate sin and evil through judgment (Rev. 20). It is the same message of the prophets in the Old Testament – a message that is like a two-sided coin bearing judgment and hope. The judgment must come first in order for rest to really be permanent and lasting. The book of Revelation is not without controversy or gore, but the truth it reveals is necessary for us to be able to confront the sin in our livestoday and give us hope for tomorrow. Restoration comes in the new kingdom and it is even better than the idyllic state of the Garden of Eden (Rev. 21).
Look at the promises of God in Rev. 21-22 that we see fulfilled in this restored kingdom through Christ, and tell me if you think life won’t be better!
- God’s People: In the garden of Eden, Adam and Eve were God’s People. They shared an intimate fellowship with their Creator. And they served as His Sub-regents under the King. But in the new kingdom, our relationship with God will be even more intimate. Look at what Rev. 21:7-8 says: “He who overcomes shall inherit all things, and I will be his God and he shall be My son.” In this newly restored kingdom, you and I will not only be the King’s sub-regents. We are the inheritors of the very same kingdom we co-rule with Christ! And we become these inheritors by virtue of our relationship with God – his very own Daughter. We are Daughters of the King.
- God’s Place: In the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve dwelt in the presence of God. They lived a beautiful garden and enjoyed God. But in the New Jerusalem, our dwelling with God will be even more intimate. Look at what Rev. 21:22-24 says: “But I saw no temple in it, for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. The city had no need of the sun or of the moon to shine in it, for the glory of God illuminated it. The Lamb is its light. And the nations of those who are saved shall walk in its light, and the kings of the earth bring their glory and honor into it.” There is no longer any need for a temple or tabernacle in which to worship God. The Lamb is its very temple and His light radiates for all of us to dwell in it. So our location in the new kingdom will be even better than it was in the Garden of Eden. For we have the very temple Himself dwelling among us and we will bask his light directly, permanently, more intimately than Adam and Eve ever imagined!
- God’s Rule and Blessing: In the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve were promised great blessings (a restful life of service) that were contingent upon their obedience to God’s rule. The blessings they forfeited due to sin are restored back to us through Christ’s perfect adherence to the law on our behalf. But in the restored kingdom, the blessing we receive through Christ will be even better than they are now (because we still struggle with sin). Look at what Rev. 22:3-5 says: “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. They shall see His face, and His name shall be on their foreheads. 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.” In the new kingdom, there will be no more curse! That means we will no longer struggle with our own sin or the sins of those against us. Furthermore, we will forever be able to enjoy those blessings through Christ because we will be dwelling before His very face!!!!! We will forever belong to him (with his name marking our lives and our foreheads). And this is the kicker gals…in the new kingdom, we will reign with the King forever! Adam and Eve had a pretty good set up in the Garden, right? They had sub-regent responsibilities – but the task to reign and the subsequent blessings were contingent upon obedience. We see that our dwelling with Christ makes it such that our reigning with him is forever guaranteed as well. We will never be able to forfeit those blessings of his rule. They will given to us forever our’s!!!!
I began the lesson with a quick look at a missionary family, Steve and Susan Vinton. They are examples of the living, breathing priests that God has called each of us to be as Daughters of the King. The Vinton’s are shining examples of what it means to be apriest in the King’s Kingdom and to draw others into His marvelous light (1 Pet. 2). They are shining examples of what we are to be doing as we await the final restoration process. The book of Revelation ends with this sentiment. We are to “continually wash our robes” in Christ (i.e: follow His commandments) as we wait to receive our eternal inheritance (Rev. 22:12-14).
Here is a little bit more information about the Vintons and their ministry. Visit them online at http://www.villageschools.org/.
Here are a few videos that showcase their heart and passion as priests of the Kingdom. They will encourage you to act as though you are living in the kingdom ‘now’ even though it is ‘not yet’ completed in Christ.