Sustained By God – Revelation 22:22-23

by Pastor John Fredericksen

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A man in his early 50’s had worked for decades in New York City. His girlfriend had been killed on the streets, and he had been severely mugged several times. These events brought on a nervous breakdown. With little financial means he returned to Florida, where his brother and sister-in-law took him in. For nearly thirty years, he lived in an apartment they provided, used their laundry facility, and was even given a new car. In a very real sense, they sustained his needs when he was incapable of doing so on his own.

The two closing chapters of Revelation give us a further peek into an eternal state of existence for redeemed Jews. As we read these specifics, bear in mind that, in principle, there is likely some parallel for members of the Body of Christ who will occupy the heavens. In describing the New Jerusalem in eternity future, John described it as the dwelling place of “the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb” (Revelation 21:22). The obvious implication is that Jewish inhabitants will forever live in the presence of God. Verse 23 says that city will have “no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it, for the glory of the God did lighten it.” It does not say there would be no sun or moon; only they are not needed for light because the glory of God will provide illumination. “A pure river of [the] water of life” (Revelation 22:1) will proceed “out of the throne of God and of the Lamb.” There is no reason not to take this literally and to see it as sustaining life in eternity. John also saw “the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruit” (Revelation 22:2). We last read of the tree of life in the Garden of Eden. Adam and Eve were banned from eating from it so they would not have life without end before first having the righteousness of faith. Apparently, this tree will perpetually sustain life without end and pleasurable nourishment as well. The redeemed are also seen as reigning with Christ “for ever and ever” (vs. 5), which implies meaningful and fulfilling activity unto the glory of God.

These saints will literally be sustained by the power and provision of God. Until that eternal state, they were to constantly rely on God for their physical and spiritual wellbeing. May we today likewise rely on God for both.

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Start each day with short, devotional articles taken from the book Daily Transformation by Pastor John Fredericksen. As Pastor Fredericksen writes in the introduction:

"We welcome you, as you journey with us..., to not only learn information, but to benefit from examples of faith and failure, and seek to apply God’s Word to every day life. Together, let’s transition from only studying theories of doctrine, to applying God’s truths in a practical way every day. May God use these studies to help you find daily transformation."