FRONT-PORCH GOSPEL: John will prophecy again!
Good week to all. Welcome to the “front porch.”
In our journey through the Bible these past four years, we have paused the longest at two of John’s writings: the Gospel of John, and book of Revelation. Thinking of the power of John writings, it is a shame that for ages of history, men strayed so far away from apostolic teaching that the Bible itself became obsolete, including the words of the beloved John.
The more we meditate on the inspiration in John’s writings, the more inspired we are to continue our own search for a faith that matches his lovely narratives. The inspired author’s faith comes firsthand, for he walks almost every step with the Master for more than a thousand days. We are not surprised that he stays so close to Jesus all those days, never wavering and seldom doubting. We see his penchant for righteousness in that he becomes the first of the disciples to go looking for the Lord. His pep talk to us to go looking for his Lord the same way might go might go something like this:
“Now, you go looking, too,” John would say. “What are you waiting for? Are you looking for something greater, something better? My friends, you will never find anything that matches the grandeur and glory of the Lord Jesus. Remember Peter’s question of old: “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life’? It still holds true today.
“You choose the Lord today, friend, regardless of the era in which you live or the philosophies that prevail. You choose faith over all else. And if you think that the truth of the gospel is lost beneath the rubble of human thought and doctrines, then search more, dig deeper, pray harder. To be a true gospel traveler, you have to go to that gospel – not to man – and you have to examine its pages meticulously to learn what it says and demands. Truth lies there, not in a man’s creed. Go where faith is – go there and stay, and faith will lead you all the way home.”
Can we not imagine John’s making such a speech! We know these words capture his sentiments, because we have read his gospel; and we have traveled the Revelation journey, observing a pageantry of wonder that surpasses Hollywood’s most creative productions. Through it all, John gives us a comprehensive look at where truth, hope, and faith can be found. His first writing takes us backward to eternity – “In the beginning was the Word” – and the Revelation panorama takes us forward with Jesus into that eternal realm – “I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last” (Revelation 22:13).
Cruel persecutors and false teachers of long ago strayed far away from the Light; but the Spirit would look far into the future and remind the apostle that his word would not lie forever in the rubble of apostasy. The Lord sends a mighty angel, clothed with a cloud, to remind John, “Thou must prophesy again before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings” (Revelation 10:1, 11).
Even though the Bible and the apostles’ teachings would be lost to the world for the better part of a millennium, a revival and an awakening would come with a light as bright as the sun. The world once again would have access to the gospel, allowing a rebirth of John’s narratives and a return to the truth of the teachings of the church of the New Testament. That day would come.
John would prophecy again.
Coach Steven Bowen, a long-time Red Oak teacher and coach, now enjoys his time as a full-time writer and preacher of the gospel. In addition to his evangelistic travels, he works and writes for the Church of Christ of Red Oak at Uhl Road and Ovilla. Their worship times are 10 a.m. Sundays and 7:30 pm. Wednesdays. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or call or text 972-824-5197.