: What do you think of when you hear the word privileged? Question #2, Do you consider yourself a privileged individual?
‘You probably think the land belongs to the powerful and only the privileged have a right to it!’
I. To Know
Rev. 19:9 ‘Then he said to me
, “‘Write:`Blessed are those who are called to the marriage supper of the Lamb!’” And he said to me, “These are the true sayings of God.’
: Not every knee shall bow and every tongue confess….
: Sheep vs. Goats – Matthew 25
: Privileged to understand
II. To Understand
1 Corinthians 2:14;
But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.’
Natural man, [
]. As contrasted with the spiritual man, he is one in whom the animal soul [psyche] overbears his spirit, which latter is without the Spirit of God (Jude 19). So the animal (English version, “natural”) body led by the lower nature (including both man’s fallen roasts and heart), is contrasted with the Spirit-quickened body (1 Cor 15:44-46). The carnal man is one led by unregenerate appetites, or by a self-seeking mind, not necessarily one of low sensuality, but estranged from the divine life. [
regards the natural man in the intellectual,
, in the ethical, point of view.] ‘Carnality’ is the practical manifestation of the “natural” or ‘animal mind;’ “devilish,” or ‘demon-like,’ ‘led by an evil spirit,’ is the worst type (James 3:15).
Therefore I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints,
do not cease to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers:
that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him,
the eyes of your understanding
being enlightened; that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints,’
: Privileged to represent.
III. To Represent
2 Cor. 5:17 How can a Christian be an ambassador for Christ?
In his passage on reconciliation in
2 Corinthians 5
, Paul says that Christians are ambassadors for Christ (vs. 20). An ambassador is an official envoy who represents a foreign sovereign, providing a link between his host country and the country he represents. Ambassadors work to build relations and develop policies that favor both the host and the home of the ambassador. An ambassador is appointed by the leadership of those he represents and is given authority to speak on their behalf.
An ambassador must walk a very fine line. He lives in one country, but he is responsible to another. He must represent the message of a leader who is not directly present. He must also embody the character of his home country, following laws and customs that are not necessarily known or even welcome in the host nation. All while respecting the laws and customs of that host.
: Privileged to enjoy.
IV. To Enjoy
And I heard, as it were, the voice of a great multitude, as the sound of many waters and as the sound of mighty thunderings, saying, “Alleluia
! For the Lord God Omnipotent reigns!
“Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready.”
And to her it was granted to be arrayed in fine linen, clean and bright, for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.
Then he said to me, “Write:`Blessed are those who are called to the marriage supper of the Lamb!’” And he said to me, “These are the true sayings of God.”
These wedding customs had three major parts. First, a marriage contract was signed by the parents of the bride and the
, and the parents of the bridegroom or the bridegroom himself would pay a dowry to the bride or her parents. This began what was called the betrothal period—what we would today call the engagement. This period was the one Joseph and Mary were in when she was found to be with child (
The second step in the process usually occurred a year later, when the bridegroom, accompanied by his male friends, went to the house of the bride at midnight, creating a torchlight parade through the streets. The bride would know in advance this was going to take place, and so she would be ready with her maidens, and they would all join the parade and end up at the bridegroom’s home. This custom is the basis of the parable of the ten virgins in
. The third phase was the marriage supper itself, which might go on for days, as illustrated by the wedding at Cana in
What John’s vision in Revelation pictures is the wedding feast of the Lamb (Jesus Christ) and His bride (the Church) in its third phase. The implication is that the first two phases have already taken place. The first phase was completed on earth when each individual believer placed his or her faith in Christ as Savior. The dowry paid to the bridegroom’s parent (God the Father) would be the blood of Christ shed on the Bride’s behalf. The Church on earth today, then, is “betrothed” to Christ, and, like the wise virgins in the parable, all believers should be watching and waiting for the appearance of the Bridegroom (the
). The second phase symbolizes the rapture of the Church, when Christ comes to claim His bride and take her to the Father’s house. The marriage supper then follows as the third and final step. It is our view that the marriage supper of the Lamb takes place in heaven between the rapture and the second coming (during the tribulation on earth).
Attending the wedding feast will be not only the Church as the Bride of Christ, but others as well. The “others” include the Old Testament saints—they will not have been resurrected yet, but their souls/spirits will be in heaven with us. As the angel told John to write, “Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb” (
). The marriage supper of the Lamb is a glorious celebration of all who are in Christ!
: Do we have to wait till we get to heaven to enjoy?
The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly
What does life abundant look like?
This word “abundant” in the Greek is
, meaning “exceedingly, very highly, beyond measure, more, superfluous, a quantity so abundant as to be considerably more than what one would expect or anticipate.”
In short, Jesus promises us a life far better than we could ever imagine, a concept reminiscent of
1 Corinthians 2:9
: “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him.” The apostle Paul tells us that God is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, and He does it by His power, a power that is at work within us if we belong to Him (
: Before we begin to have visions of lavish homes, expensive cars, worldwide cruises, and more money than we know what to do with, we need to pause and think about what Jesus teaches regarding this abundant life. The Bible tells us that wealth, prestige, position, and power in this world are not God’s priorities for us (
1 Corinthians 1:26-29
). In terms of economic, academic, and social status, most Christians do not come from the privileged classes. Clearly, then, abundant life does not consist of an abundance of material things. If that were the case, Jesus would have been the wealthiest of men. But just the opposite is true (
Abundant life is eternal life
, a life that begins the moment we come to Christ and receive Him as Savior, and goes on throughout all eternity. The biblical definition of life — specifically eternal life — is provided by Jesus Himself:
“Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent”
This definition makes no mention of length of days, health, prosperity, family, or occupation. As a matter of fact, the only thing it does mention is knowledge of God, which is the key to a truly abundant life.
What is the abundant life?
One day we will see God face to face, and we will know Him completely as we will be known completely (
1 Corinthians 13:12
). We will no longer struggle with sin and doubt. This will be the ultimately fulfilled abundant life.
: My dear Christian friend, we are privileged people.
1 Peter 2:9
a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; (1Pe 2:9 NKJ)
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