Themes in Revelation: The Kingdom of God
Week 11, Thursday: The Church is the Sign and Outpost of the Kingdom
The Church is not the Kingdom of God; rather, it is a sign and outpost of the Kingdom, the primary “conduit” through which the rule of Christ makes progress on earth as it is in heaven. It’s no wonder, therefore, that Christ calls His Church to overcome every obstacle that keeps them from fulfilling their calling in the Kingdom and glory of God.
Read Revelation 11, 12
Meditate on the following passages from Revelation
1. Revelation 12.13-17: In this life the Church must primarily contend with spiritual forces of wickedness in high places. What are some ways churches should expect to experience this warfare? How should church members prepare to deal with it?
2. Revelation 14.6-11; 20.4: What does it mean to “worship the beast”? Why is it important that churches understand this? It seems pretty clear that believers, while in the world, must keep themselves unstained by the world. How does this relate to the local church being a Kingdom sign and outpost?
3. Revelation 19.1-8: The Church fulfills its calling by looking forward to, proclaiming, and preparing for the marriage supper of the Lamb. Explain.
4. Revelation 21.9-21: In Psalm 48.1-3 the people of God are described as the joy and beauty of the whole earth. Of what does this joy and beauty consist? Should John’s depiction of the beauty of the City to Come affect the way churches carry out their missions as signs and outposts of the Kingdom? In what ways?
5. Revelation 21.22-27: We suggested that this passage has both “then and there” and “here and now” implications. What does bringing “glory and honor” to the Lamb/King have to do with worship? What does it have to do with laying down our lives for the Lamb/King?
Summarize what it means for you to help your church become a sign and outpost of the Kingdom of God.
The Glory of God
What is it specifically about the worship conducted in your church that brings honor and glory to God? Is there anything in that worship that you would say detracts from the honor and glory of God?
Glory to Glory
Complete the following: “For me to live more consistently for the honor and glory of God…”
Recite Revelation 15.3, 4. How do you understand the “great and marvelous works” of the Lord? Ask a Christian friend to help you think about this.
One generation shall praise Your works to another,
And shall declare Your mighty acts.
I will meditate on the glorious splendor of Your majesty,
And on Your wondrous works.
Men shall speak of the might of Your awesome acts,
And I will declare Your greatness.
They shall utter the memory of Your great goodness,
And shall sing of Your righteousness.
T. M. Moore
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The book of Revelation is the culminating episode in the story of God’s covenant. To learn more about that covenant, and to discover the way it integrates all of Scripture into the Gospel of Jesus Christ, order a copy of T. M.’s book, I Will Be Your God, by clicking here.
Except as indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.