Throughout the annals of Redemption there has always been a progressive REVELATION OF JESUS CHRIST. A pilgrimage of all saints, ever upward, ever onward – the absence from which is no slight doctrinal infraction merely, but, rather, a treasonous betrayal of the Captain of salvation Himself, Jesus Christ, who is marching to Zion!
Literally speaking, all of redemptive history is in one ongoing climactic crescendo leading unto, not only the present-tense situation of the saints so gloriously put in the Epistle to the Hebrews, chapter 12, "Ye are come unto mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem" (v.22), but unto the much-more-glorious bringing of this heavenly reality – upon earth! – at the fruition of the New Covenant, in the 2nd Advent of Christ from heaven!
What if the Lord has called you into the ark, but you remain without (Gen. 7:1)? What if the Lord called you out of Ur of the Chaldees, but you will not come (Gen. 12:1)? What if the Lord called you out of Egypt, into the Promised Land, but you wish to return (Num. 14:4)?! What if the Lord called you into the campaigns of His kingdom's progress in the earth, but you remain at home (II Sam. 11:1)? What happens if the invisible God forsakes the visible Church (of the OT), and makes Babylon "the weapons of His indignation", but you rebel against your captors (Isa. 13:5; Jer. 27)? What if the Lord made you recipient of unprecedented sovereign mercy, and yet you rejected the commandment of the Lord, and would not worthily respond to His mercy (Mal. 2:1-3)?! What if Christ came to you, and said "Follow me," but He was not as you had expected, so you received Him not (John 1:11; Matt. 23:37-39)?!...
This real and present danger of refusing to follow the Lord Jesus in every covenant and dispensation is undeniable. And shall we now turn a blind eye to this same danger that has now loomed overhead for 20 successive centuries? What is most troubling is when the virtues of dependence, and loyalty, as concerning former words and revelations of the Lord, while inordinately related to, become the causes of practical apostasy. Practical apostasy (Tit. 1:16), I say, like a shrine built about the base of one mighty mountain-like revelation – when God meant it not as the end of a hallway, but as an open door, to usher you into greater corridors of grace and truth! This is a subtle refusal to go on with God, though it be for the greatness of the soul's love for "the principles of the doctrines of Christ"! This is an inordinate relationship to the "foundation".
"Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation."
– Heb. 6:1
The above text perfectly represents my point of emphasis. This is not a despite for "the principles of the oracles of God" (Heb. 5:12)! This is a proper relationship thereto – a truly pure, ardent flame of love! It is "leaving", not a forsaking; as a man would leave off laying the foundation when it had once been situated and established, unto the full improving upon that foundation: the mighty superstructure to be built thereon! A man would be a fool to dig 100 feet into the earth, sinking his pillars into the immovable bedrock below, and yet never to build into the heights of the heavens! This is the treachery which abounds in our day, as with the priest, so with the people, and they love to have it so!... For it is all done in the name of Christocentric preaching!
God is looking for lovesick, and jealous defenders of the gospel of Jesus Christ, and all that it entails! Christ does not admire your superstitious adherence to the "red letters", beloved...
Do you see Christ in all the scriptures (Luke 24:27,32,44-46)?!
- Do you know that the gospel was not first introduced in the NT, through the preaching of John the Baptist & Jesus Christ, but was first explicitly declared through the prophet Isaiah (Isa. 40:9; 41:27; 52:7; 61:1)?
- Do you know that their are elements of the gospel (particularly declared by David and Isaiah), which were not fully declared through the preaching of Jesus Christ in the first four gospels of the NT, hence the necessity of Revelation for the closing of the canon?!
- Do you know that this present dispensation of Christ in the Gentiles is a mystery hidden from all ages (Rom. 16:25,26; Col. 1:26,27), which was unrevealed in the 1st Advent of Christ, in the days of His flesh, but was afterwards revealed exclusively to Paul the Apostle, called "the gospel of the uncircumcision" (Gal. 2:7; Eph. 3:1-12); hence the necessity of Acts and the NT espistles for the perfection of the canon?! [A mystery warranting NT apostolic explanation!]
- Do you know that the gospel does not climax with the mighty revelations declared in the Gospels and the subsequent Epistles, but most breathtakingly summits at the grand finale of the end of the world, captured in the book of REVELATION!?
"For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope."
– Rom. 15:4
When one comes to understand the seamless garment of the progressive revelation of the Scriptures, it truly works a deep patience in the soul; and it is this virtue of the Spirit which the saints shall most have cause to thank the Lord for in the looming tribulation, just upon the prophetic horizon. As it is written,
"Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus."
– Rev. 14:12
It is truly astonishing to behold the NT witness of the apostle's perseverance (i.e. patiently enduring) in the testimony of Jesus Christ, and how this was the sure course to the opening of further, formerly undiscovered, yet vital mysteries of the gospel of Christ unto them! For example, the apostle John persevered in the testimony of Jesus Christ, not that only which was preached unto Him by Christ (in the days of His flesh, John 3:11; 5:39), but that also which was further revealed unto the apostle Paul (Rom. 16:25,26; Gal. 2:7); until, finally, on the island of Patmos, where he was suffering tribulation for this "testimony", Lo! he received yet more: THE REVELATION OF JESUS CHRIST!
"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..."
– Rev. 1:9
While most Christians are saturated with the idea that the Book of Revelation is a mere peripheral topic, and divisive, they err in their hearts, and alienate themselves from the mountain peak which their Lord is summiting, leading His captivity captive in one of the closing scenes of Redemption: Mt. Zion with His 144k (Rev. 14:1-5)!
To have jettisoned this vital understanding from your fellowship with God, and your affections in heavenly places, is to threaten the jeopardy of your standing with the Lord Jesus in the Last Days!... I am sure the only way that a sincere, blood-bought saint of the Most High would ever do this, is through the misconception that this is irrelevant, and essentially has nothing to do with the GOSPEL of Jesus Christ... Well, the book of revelation has much to say about the Gospel, and is inextricably a part of it, and even the climactic pinnacle of it, as before proved.
My reader, Babylon is rising. You have been warned.