As many of you are aware, I concluded a short two part sermon series this past week at Wildwood entitled, “M+”. In this series, we were looking more in depth at the events that will occur in the first 1,000 years after the return of Jesus Christ to the earth, as described in Revelation 20-21. I have had a lot of dialogue with many of you about this short series, so I have decided to post the audio from the sermons here on my blog, as well as write a few questions for further reflection in case you or your small group are interested in exploring the idea further. May God bless your study of His Word!
Here is the link to the audio from the sermon: M+ Part 2
or, you can listen to the audio online via the player below:
- Read Revelation 20:4-21:4
- Our lives are very short compared to eternity. In other words, we will spend much more “time” on the other side of the grave than in this life. As a result, I make the comment that we should spend some time planning for our life after death. Do you spend much time thinking about life after death? If you do, what are your thoughts? Scared? Uncertain? Excited? Indifferent?
- In 20:11-15, the Great White Throne Judgment is described. All humanity stands before the throne and are judged on the basis of “what they have done.” Many times people push back toward the concept of God’s judgment because they think it is unfair. Do you feel it is fair or unfair for God to judge humanity on the basis of our works? Why or why not?
- Though judgment comes on the basis of works, salvation comes only through one’s name being written in the book of life. I mention in the message that my understanding of the book of life is that it contains the names of those who have placed their faith and trust in Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of sins. Only those with their names written in this book are saved . . . the rest are cast into the lake of fire. If judgment is on the basis of works (what we have done), then we need better works. Being identified with Jesus allows His righteous works to be credited to our account, while our sin is fully paid for in His death on the cross (2 Corinthians 5:21). Whose works are you counting on for your salvation? Your works or His work? How does this picture of judgment in the end times help you understand more about the salvation offered in Christ?
- Revelation 20:4-6 describes the saints reigning with Jesus for 1,000 years in His Kingdom. Have you ever stopped to think that if we trust Christ now, we get to reign with Jesus in His Kingdom? This would involve real work on the earth in our “life after death.” How does understanding that we will get to reign with Christ effect your view of life after death?
- Revelation 21:1-4 describes the New Heaven and the New Earth as a return to a “Garden of Eden” like experience . . . living in relationship with God, without sin, or pain, or loss. This is more of our traditional understanding of heaven. What about our current world makes you most long for this New Heaven and New Earth that Jesus promises?
- What do you most take away from this message, passage for your life today? In other words, how will you apply the truth talked about in part 2 of this series?