REVELATION 1:12-16: “Then I turned to see the voice that was speaking to me, and on turning I saw seven golden lampstands, and in the midst of the lampstands one like a son of man, clothed with a long robe and with a golden sash around his chest. The hairs of his head were white, like white wool, like snow. His eyes were like a flame of fire, his feet were like burnished bronze, refined in a furnace, and his voice was like the roar of many waters. In his right hand he held seven stars, from his mouth came a sharp two-edged sword, and his face was like the sun shining in full strength.” (ESV)
OBSERVATION: Who is Jesus? When I hear His name – who do I see? Do I see a baby in a manger? Do I see a village carpenter? Do I see an itinerant preacher in a long robe and sandals? When I think of Jesus – who do I see?
Today many have created an image of Jesus that suits their own personal perspective. We enjoy hearing the story of the baby Jesus. We all love the miracle working Jesus. And we all want to see Jesus as our friend. We are humbled when we remember the Cross and think of the suffering Jesus. Some have moved beyond these common Biblical representations of Jesus and have created their own version of Jesus. Yet, all of these, from the familiar Biblical representations, to the distortions made to fit our culture and personal perspectives, are all wrong if we do not see Jesus as John saw Him in Revelation 1:12-16!
Jesus is no longer in a manger! Jesus is no longer walking in a long robe and sandals with 12 disciples! Jesus is not simply our “buddy”. Jesus is Lord, risen, glorified, all powerful, and coming again to judge both the quick and the dead! What John sees is Jesus the King! His hair was white like snow. His eyes were a flame of fire. His feet like burnished bronze. His voice like the roar of many waters. He held the “Church” in His right hand, and the Word of God came forth from His mouth. His glory, His countenance, was brighter than the sun shining in full strength. When John truly saw Jesus – he fell down before Him as one who was dead.
This is the Jesus is who will return to this earth. John writes – “Behold, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him, and all tribes of the earth will wail on account of him. Even so. Amen.” (Revelation 1:7 ESV) When He returns the second time it will not be in a manger, it will be with the clouds, the host of heavens armies, and every eye will see Him. His purposes will be clear to all, to those who pierced Him, and to all the nations and tribes of the earth. Jesus will come to bring judgment upon the ungodly and establish His eternal Kingdom for the redeemed.
These may seem like strong words. Where is the Jesus of love, the Jesus of mercy? The answer is – He is calling now to both you and me to believe and be saved. He has not yet returned and His mercy is extended to every man, woman, and child who will believe. To those who call upon Him – He reaches out his right hand, as he did to John and says:
“When I saw him, I fell at his feet as though dead. But he laid his right hand on me, saying, “Fear not, I am the first and the last, and the living one. I died, and behold I am alive forevermore, and I have the keys of Death and Hades.” (Revelation 1:17-18 ESV)
There is a coming Day of Judgment for all who do not believe. Yet, for all who call upon the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, there is a day of joy and celebration, a day of salvation and full redemption, a day of reunion with the saints who have gone before us. The risen, glorified King reaches out His hand to you and me. The words of Isaiah rush to my heart:
“Seek the Lord while he may be found; call upon him while he is near; let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; let him return to the Lord, that he may have compassion on him, and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.” (Isaiah 55:6-7 ESV)
In Jesus Name!