Monday, July 6, 2009

Rev 21

And I saw no temple in the city, for its temple is the Lord God the Almighty and the Lamb. And the city has no need of sun or moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and its lamp is the Lamb. By its light will the nations walk, and the kings of the earth will bring their glory into it, and its gates will never be shut by day—and there will be no night there. They will bring into it the glory and the honor of the nations. But nothing unclean will ever enter it, nor anyone who does what is detestable or false, but only those who are written in the Lamb’s book of life.
Revelation 21:22-27
At the end of the Bible, as God's story comes to fruition, we can see two important facts.

First, heaven will be filled with people from all nations. The Greek word translated as "nations" is ethnos--where we get the word ethnicity. Heaven will be filled with people from every ethnicity. There's an old saying that Sunday morning is the most segregated time in America. And a quick look through most American churches shows the truth of that phrase. But, being part of this mission to Nagarote gives me a chance to see the global nature of the church.

Second, nothing unclean will enter heaven. Yet, as the Bible makes clear, all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. Even our good deeds are like filthy rags. But, thanks be to God for the gift of Jesus who has given us the only path from eternal separation from God to salvation. Through Jesus we receive the redemption and sanctification that makes us pure in the eyes of God. And that is why missions is essential in the Christian church. The only way to be saved is through faith in Jesus, and people need to hear about Jesus in order to have such faith. And Christians need to be sent in order for the lost to hear.

Let us all consider the global nature of the church and the amazing grace that allows people to be saved through grace, regardless of their wealth, social status, citizenship, etc.
For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him. For "everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved."
Romans 10:12-13

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