Communion Letter: Dec. 29th
Dear Family at Christ Community,
As we conclude our Advent sermon series in Revelation 7, we will celebrate the faithful witness and perseverance of Christ on our behalf to make us ultimately the church triumphant over the powers of sin and death. The Lord’s Table will serve to point us forward to the Marriage Supper of the Lamb when Christ’s victory will be fully realized and enjoyed in His return. It will be our greatest joy and peace to feast in the House of Zion! Between the now and the not yet, we are called to proclaim the Lamb’s victory until He returns. The elements from the table serve to nourish us in the Holy Spirit to continue in perseverant proclamation of the Gospel in a world actively opposed to such good news. The broken bread helps aid our witness to the transforming power of Christ’s forgiveness in the removal of our shame and guilt. The overflowing cup serves to fill us with the courage to declare the victory of Christ over sin and death in word and deed for the life of the world. We have not been called out of the world but to enter into the suffering and pain of the world as ministering priests from God’s redemptive kingdom to call people to join our family. Dennis E. Johnson in Triumph of the Lamb: A Commentary on Revelation encourages this as he writes:
The call to perseverance is obeyed not through monastic withdrawal from the hostile surrounding culture but through evangelistic confrontation with the culture. Perseverance is therefore related to the call to be a faithful witness on behalf of Jesus….It was John’s faithful testimony on behalf of Jesus that plunged him into the tribulation of exile on the prison-island Patmos. He is therefore an empathetic and credible witness to be sent by Jesus, the faithful witness (Rev. 1:5; 3:14), to encourage and summon the churches to persevering hope and witness not in isolation from the world but in interaction with it.
Pray for the Holy Spirit to nourish your perseverance and witness of the victorious Lamb in this fallen world. Ask the Spirit to grant you opportunities in your spheres of influence to share in word and deed the redeeming work of Christ in your life. Pursue reconciliation with any fellow image-bearers from which you are estranged because of sin (theirs and/or yours). Walk in newness of life in Christ as we transition from one year to the next giving thanks for the opportunity to join in God’s redemptive work and longing for the return when all things will be made new!