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The Present Ministry of Jesus (2 of 16)
Revelation 1:4–20 (ESV)
When we think of Jesus our minds go to one of two places -
a. The Jesus of History - His ministry on the earth 2000 years ago. The sermon on the Mount, His Miracles, the cross the resurrection.
b. The Jesus of the Future - His climactic return to the earth in the future. As a matter of fact people are intensely concerned that his return may be very soon.
According to a recent study by Lifeway Statistician Ed Stetzer:
• 1 in 3 Americans believe the conflict in Syria as part of the Bible’s plan for the End Times.
• 1 in 4 believe it could lead to Armageddon.
Now getting 1/3 of Americans to agree on anything of a religious nature is astounding.
Barna recently found that "41 percent of all U.S. adults, 54 percent of Protestants, and 77 percent of evangelicals believe the world is now living in the biblical end times." Hollywood in an effort to capitalize on the interest in the end times with began this month a remake of the movie, “Left Behind” that, this time staring Nicolas Cage.
But right here in the beginning of the Revelation, John doesn’t turn our attention to either the past or the future, but the PRESENT. John’s first revelation is what Jesus is doing right now.
TEXT: Revelation 1:4–20 (ESV)
4 John to the seven churches that are in Asia:
Ok, there you see the number 7, which we said last week represents completeness. The seven churches mentioned here were literal congregations in Asia Minor which is modern day Turkey. But it is also significant to note that these cities were also were hubs for the mail route. The order they are listed is the order in which Roman couriers would have visited these cities. There were other churches that surrounded each of these cities, and it is assumed that they were also recipients of these letters.
Beyond that the things written to the 7 churches are representative of churches in every ...
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