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Dec 30, 2016

As people like Simeon and Anna (Luke 2) waited for the Messiah to come, I am sure that they were thinking of verses like Malachi 3:1:

“Look! I am sending my messenger, and he will prepare the way before me. Then the Lord you are seeking will suddenly come to his Temple. The messenger of the covenant, whom you look for so eagerly, is surely coming,” says the LORD of Heaven’s Armies.

Re-reading ISAIAH 66:
Isaiah ends with blessings and promises  that foreshadow Revelation, such as these:

12 GNT The Lord says, “I will bring you lasting prosperity; the wealth of the nations will flow to you like a river that never goes dry. …
22 “Just as the new earth and the new heavens will endure by my power, so your descendants and your name will endure.

In stark contrast to the promises and blessings, Isaiah also ends with vivid warnings against judgments and punishments that are like those in Revelation. Jesus himself quoted that final verse about the worms and the unquenchable fire. (Mark 9:48) You can take that as Jesus’ stamp of approval on all that Isaiah said!

In chapter 21 we heard the invitation to receive free life-giving water for anyone who is thirsty, and that invitation is repeated in today’s chapter. The culmination of everything promised and the healing of everything sick and broken occur here. God says, “Look, I am making all things new.” There is again symbolism in every aspect of the New Jerusalem— including even the shape of a huge cube. As noted above at the end of Isaiah, in stark contrast to the eternal blessings for God’s people are the vivid ending warnings of eternal judgment in the last two chapters of Revelation.

In Rev. 22:8-9, most translations make it sound that John made the same mistake twice— bowing down again to the angel that was showing everything to him. But the Greek in those verse in chapter 22 can be understood to be retelling that event that happened in chapter 19, and I think that makes better sense. The probable reason that John included the story twice was to emphasize that angels should not be worshipped. Let’s beware of such heresy! Because such false teaching keeps on resurfacing and some forms of Gnosticism remain to the present day.

Congratulations on finishing the Digging Deeper Daily reading plan!

Translation notes:
8 I, John, have heard and seen all these things. And when I finished hearing and seeing them, (as I told you before) I fell down at the feet of the angel who had shown me these things, and I was about to worship him.
14-15 [It makes better sense to me to include verses 14-15 in Jesus’ quote, which means I did not read those verse the way I would if they were John’s narration.]