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New Testament - Today in Revelation chapter 14 we read about Jesus (the Lamb) and all believers (the 144,000) in the heavenly Jerusalem (Mount Zion). I love verses 4 and 5 in this chapter: "For they are spiritually undefiled, pure as virgins, following the Lamb wherever he goes. They have been purchased from among the people on the earth as a special offering to God and to the Lamb. No falsehood can be charged against them; they are blameless." Are these 2 verses attractive to you? Do you want to be like this someday in heaven? Spiritually undefiled? Pure? Following Jesus wherever he goes? Blameless?
We then read about the Three Angels and In verse 8 we read: "Then another angel followed him through the skies, shouting, "Babylon is fallen--that great city is fallen--because she seduced the nations of the world and made them drink the wine of her passionate immorality."" Babylon, as we know from our recent readings in the Old Testament, such as Daniel, was in ancient Mesopotamia and the commercial, political, and religious center of a world empire led by Nebuchadnezzar. Some commentators believe that John is writing about Rome here when he says Babylon - and that John uses the term Babylon because it would be too dangerous for him to say Rome. Some others believe this reference to Babylon refers to the time of the antichrist in the end days, and represents the corrupt political and religious systems of the world in the end times.
Verse 12 is likely referring to the end times, but it does make me think about the persecuted Christians in our world today - "Let this encourage God's holy people to endure persecution patiently and remain firm to the end, obeying his commands and trusting in Jesus." There are thousands, if not millions, of Christians in our world today who suffer for their belief in Christ. They are persecuted. Today. How can we encourage these holy people of God who are enduring persecution today? Prayer is certainly one thing we can do, as a starter. Have you heard of the International Day of the Persecuted Church? Please visit their website by clicking on this link - and then click on the links on their home page to check out some great ministries that are serving the needs of the Persecuted Church. Thank you for considering praying and getting involved in the Persecuted Church.
Bible.org's commentary on today's readings in Revelation chapter 14 titled "Special Announcements" is at this link.
Worship Video: As it is almost Christmas, here is Casting Crown's "I Heard Bells on Christmas Day" live:
Do you know the peace of God's Silent Night? Click here for heavenly peace!
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