OceanSide church of Christ

Read devotionals for December 2019

January 1, 2020

Revelation 1:1 – The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to shew unto his servants things which much shortly come to pass; and he sent and signified it by his angel unto his servant John.

Thought: Three things stand out in this introductory verse to a most controversial book. First, there is the term “Revelation.” The Greek word is “apokalupsis.” It simply means “a disclosure” or “a manifestation.” Second, the book of Revelation involves things “which must shortly come to pass.” Many people fail to understand this. Third, there is the word “signified.” It means “to make known by signs.” This indicates that the book is highly figurative.

Ephesians 3:3-5

January 2, 2020

Revelation 1:2 – Who bear record of the word of God, and of the testimony of Jesus Christ, and of all things that he saw.

Thought: God chose to reveal His Word in a very unique manner. Some call it “the process of inspiration.” God revealed His holy Word using men as instruments of revelation. John was the instrument through which the Revelation was revealed. Some of the things were spoken to him. Some things were revealed to him through sight. John accurately revealed the message given to him by God.

I Corinthians 2:9-13

January 3, 2020

Revelation 1:3 – Blessed is he that readeth and they that hear the words of this prophecy and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand.

Thought: This writer is always impressed with what seems to be the foreknowledge of God. God knows the reactions that men will have toward His Word and plans in advance for them. He knew the book of Revelation would be a difficult read. He knew that some would shy away from a study of this divine message. Thus, He pronounced a blessing on those who would read it, hear it, and keep it. This blessing should encourage all to eagerly digest the truths of this wonderful book.

Revelation 22:7

January 4, 2020

Revelation 1:4 – John to the seven churches which are in Asia: Grace be unto you, and peace, from him which is, and which was, and which is to come; and from the seven Spirits which are before his throne.

Thought: The Revelation is a divine message to seven churches of Asia. It is a revelation to Gentile churches. John wishes both grace and peace upon these Christians. He notes that it is the eternal God who is sending this salutation. How he describes this eternal nature of God is interesting: “from him which is, and which was, and which is to come.” God is not a being limited or confined by time. The message also comes from the Holy Spirit of God. The term “seven Spirits” reveals His perfection.

Psalm 90:2

January 5, 2020

Revelation 1:5, 6 – And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, and hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father, to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.

Thought: The Revelation was also sent by Jesus Christ. John describes Him in four ways. First, He is a faithful witness. His testimony about anything is true. Second, He was the first to rise from the dead to die no more. Third, He is the Prince above all princes, the King of kings and Lord of lords. Fourth, it is He who loved us. His blood of is proof of His love. It cleansed us and enabled us to be made kings and priests unto God. Every Christian should give praise and glory for what Jesus has done.

Ephesians 5:25-27

January 6, 2020

Revelation 1:7 – Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen.

Thought: After referring to the redemptive work of Jesus, John then reminds his readers of the return of the Christ. He ascended in the clouds. He will return with clouds. Every eye will see Him when he comes in His glory, even the eyes of those who crucified him. The majority of mankind will not rejoice at His coming. John says: “All kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him.” All that was denied will be found to be true, and it will be too late. He will return, not as a Savior, but as a Judge.

Acts 1:9-11

January 7, 2020

Revelation 1:8 – I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.

Thought: The words “Alpha” and “Omega” are the first and last letters of the Greek alphabet. They represent the eternal nature of the Christ. He was at the commencement of all things, and He will continue to the end of all things. He was, is, and is to come. It is difficult for man to comprehend a being who has always existed. He was never created. He was not born. He is the “I AM.”

Isaiah 43:10

January 8, 2020

Revelation 1:9 – I John, who also am your brother, and companion in tribulation, and in the kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was in the isle that is called Patmos, for the word of God, and for the testimony of Jesus Christ.

Thought: John is the human instrument God used to bring Revelation into being. He identified with his readers immediately as a brother and companion in tribulation. At the time of the writing, he had been exiled to the island of Patmos. His proclamation of the Word of God had brought this difficult consequence. He was also their companion in the kingdom. Yes, the kingdom is presently in existence. Too, he was their companion in patience, that is, in endurance. John understands his readers.

Acts 14:21-22

January 9, 2020

Revelation 1:10, 11 – I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day, and heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet, saying, I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last: and, What thou seest, write in a book, and send it unto the seven churches of Asia: unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira, and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea.

Thought: It is intriguing to know that when men were inspired by the Spirit of God to pen the holy message of God, they were aware of the power that was upon them. John did. “I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day.” Even though John penned the words, they were not his. It was the Alpha and Omega who commanded him to see and write. His message was to be sent to the seven churches of Asia. These were Gentile churches. God wanted them to know of things that would shortly transpire.

II Samuel 23:2

January 10, 2020

Revelation 1:12, 13 – And I turned to see the voice that spake with me. And being turned, I saw seven golden candlesticks; and in the midst of the seven candlesticks one like unto the Son of man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle.

Thought: John had been commanded to write what he saw. He wanted to see the one who spoke to him. When he turned he saw two things. First, he saw seven golden candlesticks: seven the number of perfection, golden indicating their value, and candlesticks designed to give light. Second, he saw one like the Son of man in the midst of the candlesticks. The lesson is simple. Jesus is present among His churches. His robe and the golden girdle were indicative of His being a priest of the Most High God.

Ezekiel 43:5-7

January 11, 2020

Revelation 1:14 – His head and his hairs were white like wool, as white as snow; and his eyes were as a flame of fire.

Thought: John is presently describing the vision he sees of the Christ. He speaks of his hair being white like wool, white as snow. The picture involves a man with gray hair. Jesus is a being who is older. He possesses both knowledge and experience. He is deeply wise. John also notes his eyes. They are “as a flame of fire.” They have the ability to penetrate deep into the heart of man. He knows the inner thoughts, fears, plans, and motives of all.

Daniel 7:9

January 12, 2020

Revelation 1:15 – And his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and his voice as the sound of many waters.

Thought: John tells us that the feet of Jesus were like unto fine brass. Feet provide stability. Jesus is anchored. He is anchored in holiness. His feet have been purified in the refiner’s furnace. John also reveals that the voice of Jesus is “as the sound of many waters.” One is reminded of the powerful sound of the waters of Niagara Falls. Jesus’ voices commands. When it commands, it is strong and powerful.

Psalm 93:4

January 13, 2020

Revelation 1:16 – And he had in his right hand seven stars: and out of his mouth went a sharp twoedged sword: and his countenance was as the sun shineth in his strength.

Thought: John’s continues to describe Jesus. In his right hand are seven stars, the seven angels of the seven churches. His words are described as a sharp twoedged sword. They are a powerful weapon against His adversaries. They are able to cut going in and coming out. He is also a being of an extremely bright countenance. He shines as the sun. His holiness is brilliant and illuminating.

Matthew 17:1-2

January 14, 2020

Revelation 1:17 – And when I saw him, I fell down at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last.

Thought: The vision that John saw of the Christ overcame him. He writes: “I fell down at his feet as dead.” Dear readers, it is difficult for us to comprehend the overwhelming presence of the Son of God. He is powerful and majestic. To look upon Him is to feel our weakness and inadequacy. He, however, does not want us to be afraid of Him. John says: “And he laid his right hand upon me, saying, Fear not…” My friend, Jesus longs for our fellowship. Don’t fear Him. Relish His presence.

Luke 24:36-39

January 15, 2020

Revelation 1:18 – I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and death.

Thought: The crowning act of Jesus’ ministry was His resurrection from the grave. He was dead, but He lives. Others had been raised from the dead, but they had to die again. Jesus, however, is “alive for evermore.” Jesus also holds the keys of hell and death. To hold the keys to something is to have the power over it. Keys are used to open and close. Jesus has complete control of the hadean realm, the unseen realm of the death. His power and authority are more than we can fathom.

Hebrews 7:25

January 16, 2020

Revelation 1:19-20 – Write the things which thou hast seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter. The mystery of the seven stars which thou sawest in my right hand, and the seven golden candlesticks. The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches: and the seven golden candlesticks which thou sawest are the seven churches.

Thought: John has a huge task before him. He is to write the things that he sees down in a book. He will write about the past, the present, and the future. His words will be addressed to the “angels” of the churches. They will then report those things to their members. Can you imagine receiving this letter from John? Dear readers, we have. What was applicable to those churches remains true for us today. If we have ears, let us hear what the Spirit is saying to the churches.

Isaiah 30:8

January 17, 2020

Revelation 2:1 – Unto the angel of the church of Ephesus write; These things saith he that holdeth the seven stars in his right hand, who walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks.

Thought: This will be the first of seven church evaluations. The letters will be addressed to “the angel of the church.” Some believe that this represents the elders of the church. They are the overseers, the bishops, of the church. They would have the responsibility of transmitting the letter’s contents to their members. For Ephesus, it was a letter from Him who was well acquainted with them, Jesus Christ. He held the seven stars in his right hand. He also walked among them observing their affairs.

Acts 19:1-10

January 18, 2020

Revelation 2:2-3 – I know thy works, and thy labour, and thy patience, and how thou canst not bear them which are evil: and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars. And hast borne, and hast patience, and for my name’s sake hast labored, and hast not fainted.

Thought: In this letter to Ephesus, the Lord begins with commendations. He let the Ephesian Christians know that He knew their works, their labor, and their persistent endurance. These are some of the essentials to success. This church also opposed those who were evil. They even tried some who falsely proclaimed that they were apostles of Christ. The evidence proved that these individuals were not apostles at all. Jesus said they were found to be liars. Ephesus was doing many things right!

Hebrews 6:10

January 19, 2020

Revelation 2:4 – Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love.

Thought: There are two points that are very important in this verse. First, Jesus knows our faults. We cannot hide our errors from Him with all of the good we have done. Second, Jesus does not hesitate to point out where we fall short. Ephesus had left their first love. What this means precisely is difficult to determine. Their first love should have been the Christ. Could it be that they were deeply concerned about getting things right outwardly, but inwardly their hearts had grown cold?

Matthew 22:37-38

January 20, 2020

Revelation 2:5 – Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick from out of his place, expect thou repent.

Thought: How sad it is to see a person fall from the grace of God. They need to remember. They need to remember what they have left, namely, the salvation of their soul. Too, they need to repent. Repentance involves a death to sin. It involves a change of mind that leads to a change of actions and results in reformation of life. To fail to repent brings severe consequences. Jesus told the church at Ephesus their candlestick could be removed from its place if she did not repent.

Luke 13:3

January 21, 2020

Revelation 2:6 – But this thou hast, that thou hatest the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate.

Thought: Before the Lord concludes this letter to Ephesus, He gives them one more commendation. He commends them for hating something. They hated the deeds of the Nicolaitans. There is not much information on this group of people. We do know that our Lord also hated their deeds. Their practices must have opposed the doctrine of Christ. This hate is a righteous indignation toward those things that oppose God and His teachings. This hate moves one to oppose and expose evil.

Psalm 5:4-6

January 22, 2020

Revelation 2:7 – He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto he churches: To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.

Thought: The Scriptures constantly exhort us to hear the message contained in God’s Word. John writes that if you have an ear then hear what the Spirit says to the churches. All have ears. Therefore, all should hear. If the message is heard and applied, one will become an overcomer. This person will be blessed. He will eat of the tree of life in the midst of the paradise of God and live forever and ever.

I John 5:4-5

January 23, 2020

Revelation 2:8 – And unto the angel of the church of Smyrna write; These things saith the first and the last, which was dead, and is alive.

Thought: Jesus addresses a second church, the church of Smyrna. He describes Himself in two ways. He is the first and the last. These words describe His eternal nature. Jesus is not a created being. He has always been. He will always be. He is also the resurrected Lord. He was dead for a short amount of time while on earth. His body was in the tomb for three days. The grave and the hadean realm, however, could not hold Him. Early on the first day of the week, He arose never to die again.

Matthew 28:6

January 24, 2020

Revelation 2:9 – I know thy works, and tribulation, and poverty, (but thou art rich) and I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan.

Thought: Jesus said to Smyrna: “I know thy works.” This can be troubling, or it can be comforting. In the case of Smyrna Jesus knew the difficulties through which the church was going. They were suffering tribulation and poverty. They were also subject to the blasphemy of those who were of the synagogue of Satan. It was not an easy time for them. They were struggling under persecution. Jesus, however, also reminds them that they were rich. They were rich with the spiritual blessings of Christ.

Hebrews 11:24-26

January 25, 2020

Revelation 2:10 – Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.

Thought: Fear is a God-given emotion, but it must be disciplined and harnessed. It can paralyze us. It can cause us to flee when we need to stand. It can cause us to lose our souls. Tribulation and persecution were about to come upon Smyrna. Some Christians would be put in prison to be tried for their faith. Jesus told them not to fear these things. Instead, He exhorted them to be faithful, even if they had to suffer death. Ultimately, suffering would be rewarded with victory and a crown of life.

II Timothy 4:8

January 26, 2020

Revelation 2:11 – He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; he that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death.

Thought: The saints at Smyrna are also exhorted to hear the message revealed by the Spirit of God. There is a good reason for them to listen. “He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death.” The first death is physical death. This will come upon all men. The second death is condemnation to an eternity in the lake of fire and brimstone. No man has to suffer that fate. To overcome, all he must do is to hear and submit to the will of God.

Revelation 20:12-15