• Dec. 17, 2018
  • #9556

The book of Revelation reveals God’s astonishing grace in touching us with the same hand that holds the stars of the seven churches.

Hi, I’m Joni Eareckson Tada as we read through the Bible in a year.

I hope you have been joining Ken and me as we have read through God’s Word this past year—we are well into the epistles, and in just two weeks we’ll be starting the last book of the Bible, Revelation. I’ve always, always been fascinated by that book, but like you, I think Revelation can be a little daunting, so you can appreciate why, when I read through the Bible last year, and got to Revelation? When I started that first chapter, I asked God to please show me exactly what He wanted me to learn. Well! Little did I realize I was in for a surprise, because (let me read these few verses to you and see if they strike you as they did me.) Here’s the scene: It’s the last book of the Bible, right? It’s the Lord's day and the apostle John is on the island of Patmos. While he is in the spirit, he hears a loud voice behind him. Now let me pick it up at the 12th verse. John says:

I turned around to see the voice that was speaking to me. And when I turned I saw seven golden lampstands, and among the lampstands was someone ‘like a son of man’, dressed in a robe reaching down to his feet and with a golden sash around his chest. His head and hair were white like wool, as white as snow, and his eyes were like blazing fire. In his right hand he held seven stars, and out of his mouth came a sharp double-edged sword. His face was like the sun shining in all its brilliance. When I saw him, I fell at his feet as though dead. Then he placed his right hand on me and said: “Do not be afraid. I am the First and the Last. I am the Living One. Write therefore what you have seen the mystery of the seven stars that you saw in my right hand is this: the seven stars are the angels of the seven churches.”

Whew, that’s a lot in there. And hey, I don’t expect you to catch what I saw, but when I tried to picture the scene (and oh boy, what a scene it must have been, right!), when I tried to imagine it, I’m seeing Jesus, the Ancient of Days, the First and the Last standing there holding seven stars in His hand, and they’re not just any stars, these stars are the seven angels of the seven churches (whatever that means) and yet, and yet ,when John falls at Jesus’ feet, almost frightened to death, get this: the awesome Lord of heaven and earth takes that same right hand of His, the hand that is still holding up the stars and the churches (He doesn’t let them go or set them down), no, with that same hand, He bends down and gently touches John to comfort and encourage him.

Friend, is it astonishing or what that our wonderful Savior stoops to give us His right hand, not the left, but His righteous right hand, the same hand that keeps even now stars and suns spinning in motion, that right now is upholding His church around the world? Friend, this is the same hand that He uses to touch you when you’re frightened or needing encouragement. And to me (and I hope to you, too) that is quite a revelation from the book of Revelation. You know, as Ken and I enter into the homestretch of reading through the Bible in a year—and this year we did it chronologically—I want to thank all of you who joined us. Just knowing that you were using the same reading schedule ours, well it bolstered our spirits and kept us moving forward. So friend listening, pray about joining us next year for another twelve months of reading through God's Word chronologically. Just go to my radio page today at to get your reading schedule.

© Joni and Friends

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