Thursday, October 13th. Revelation 19:5-10

And from the throne came a voice saying, “Praise our God, all you his servants, and all who fear him, small and great.”

Then I heard what seemed to be the voice of a great multitude, like the sound of many waters and like the sound of mighty thunderpeals, crying out,

      “Hallelujah! For the Lord our God the Almighty reigns.

      Let us rejoice and exult and give him the glory,

      for the marriage of the Lamb has come,

      and his bride has made herself ready;

      to her it has been granted to be clothed

      with fine linen, bright and pure”—

         for the fine linen is the righteous deeds of the saints.


And the angel said to me, “Write this: Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb.” And he said to me, “These are true words of God.” Then I fell down at his feet to worship him, but he said to me, “You must not do that! I am a fellow servant with you and your comrades who hold the testimony of Jesus. Worship God! For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.” Revelation 19:5-10


I got a phone call last night that a former parishioner had suddenly passed away.  She was a woman who had had more than her fair share of difficulties during her life.  I talked with her, with no clue that it would be the last time, at an event at our church last month.  Now, with no warning, she is gone.


I understand that millions of people have long ago let go of any faith or trust in God.  They’ve given up or simply moved on, perhaps looking at people of faith as misguided or foolish.  I suppose such people view death close to what Steve Jobs meant when he said “Death is very likely the single best invention of Life. It is Life’s change agent.”


I guess there is something more light-hearted about viewing death as the “single best invention of life” as opposed to something more along the lines of “the wages of sin is death” but, frankly, both experientially and theologically, light-hearted talk about death is like wall-papering over a burned up kitchen.  You might try to cover it with something pretty but it still stinks.  And no amount of money or wishes or positive thinking or scientific technology can change a thing about it.  It is finished.


But I believe there is more.  I haven’t been there.  I haven’t had “90 Minutes in Heaven” but I don’t need it.  I follow Jesus who attacked death face on and swallowed it up.  He was resurrected on Easter Sunday morning and immediately appeared to his disciples – those fearful, too smart sometimes for their own britches, “just like us” disciples – and he breathed new life into them too.  That’s the story I live by and it doesn’t end with dust in the ground.


It ends with a chorus of voices raised in song.  It ends without tears of pain and sorrow, without hungry bellies or heart disease.  It ends in a better place that never ends.  I can’t explain it.  I don’t even try.  I trust it and it brings both hope and purpose.


I’m thankful to Steve Jobs for the computer that I’m writing this devotion on.  But I’m thankful to Jesus that my friend is in a better place.


Let us pray:  Gracious Lord, for the promise of life everlasting, for the victory over sin and death, for the hope that you give to the suffering, we give you thanks this morning.  Fill our imaginations with the sound of a heavenly chorus, with a vision of the communion of saints cheering us on as we continue to run our race.  Draw near to those who live in fear and bring hope to those who mourn.  In Jesus’ name.  Amen. 


3 Responses to “Thursday, October 13th. Revelation 19:5-10”

  1. Marthe Says:

    Thank you for pinning this down again for all of us. It sometimes feels as though faith is under attack constantly. The daily reminders you are again providing for us are so needed. Thanks again.

  2. Randy Nelson Says:

    “I can’t explain it. I don’t even try. I trust it and it brings both hope and purpose.”
    Also, the story brings such joy throughout my life as I use my hands to bring God glory.
    Thanks, Randy

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