Revelation 11 The Two Witnesses

 

New Testament study

View today’s reading at Bible Gateway

11 I was given a reed like a measuring rod and was told, “Go and measure the temple of God and the altar, with its worshipers. But exclude the outer court; do not measure it, because it has been given to the Gentiles. They will trample on the holy city for 42 months. And I will appoint my two witnesses, and they will prophesy for 1,260 days, clothed in sackcloth.” They are “the two olive trees” and the two lampstands, and “they stand before the Lord of the earth.” If anyone tries to harm them, fire comes from their mouths and devours their enemies. This is how anyone who wants to harm them must die. They have power to shut up the heavens so that it will not rain during the time they are prophesying; and they have power to turn the waters into blood and to strike the earth with every kind of plague as often as they want.

Now when they have finished their testimony, the beast that comes up from the Abyss will attack them, and overpower and kill them. Their bodies will lie in the public square of the great city—which is figuratively called Sodom and Egypt—where also their Lord was crucified. For three and a half days some from every people, tribe, language and nation will gaze on their bodies and refuse them burial. 10 The inhabitants of the earth will gloat over them and will celebrate by sending each other gifts, because these two prophets had tormented those who live on the earth.

11 But after the three and a half days the breath of life from God entered them, and they stood on their feet, and terror struck those who saw them. 12 Then they heard a loud voice from heaven saying to them, “Come up here.” And they went up to heaven in a cloud, while their enemies looked on.

13 At that very hour there was a severe earthquake and a tenth of the city collapsed. Seven thousand people were killed in the earthquake, and the survivors were terrified and gave glory to the God of heaven.

14 The second woe has passed; the third woe is coming soon.

The Seventh Trumpet

15 The seventh angel sounded his trumpet, and there were loud voices in heaven, which said:

“The kingdom of the world has become
the kingdom of our Lord and of his Messiah,
and he will reign for ever and ever.”

16 And the twenty-four elders, who were seated on their thrones before God, fell on their faces and worshiped God, 17 saying:

“We give thanks to you, Lord God Almighty,
the One who is and who was,
because you have taken your great power
and have begun to reign.
18 The nations were angry,
and your wrath has come.
The time has come for judging the dead,
and for rewarding your servants the prophets
and your people who revere your name,
both great and small—
and for destroying those who destroy the earth.”

19 Then God’s temple in heaven was opened, and within his temple was seen the ark of his covenant. And there came flashes of lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder, an earthquake and a severe hailstorm.

New International Version (NIV)

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A Prayer for Those Who Are Weary This Christmas – Your Daily Prayer – December 20 2019

A Prayer for Those Who Feel Weary and Burdened this Christmas
By Debbie McDaniel

“Come to me all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” – Matthew 11:28

We rub shoulders every day with people who are hurting, lonely, or desperate. Sometimes we notice, but many times we don’t. Maybe we’re often too busy, preoccupied, or overwhelmed ourselves.

weary-world-rejoices

And to be honest, many days, “we” are those people: the hurting, the lonely, the desperate. Just needing someone to notice. To slow down. To take time.

Sometimes in the rush of the holiday season, it seems that more people appear stressed, on edge, weary and worn, tempers are short. What’s supposed to be the most wonderful time of the year can often feel more like madness – in the traffic – in the crowds – in the shopping frenzy.

We’re busy. We’re pressed for time. Running full sprint, straight through the holidays.

For many of us, being busy comes naturally – active, moving, going – it’s what we’re all about. We’re rewarded for how much we accomplish, especially in short amounts of time. We live in a culture that places value on the busy. We tend to get impatient with those who are too slow about anything.

And nothing wrong with being “on the go.” Or being active. Except this one thing.

We often never stop.

We’re too busy to stop. We even forget what it feels like. So much so, that when we finally do, we feel like we’re wasting time. We feel guilty for being “lazy.” Slowing down takes work. Stopping and just breathing deep…takes practice.

But God is not so interested in whether we “get it all done” with a few days to spare before Christmas. He’s interested in “us,” in our hearts, in our lives.

Jesus came many years ago, right into the midst of chaos and weariness. And to a dark world, He brought peace and great hope.

He still brings it today. He lifts our burdens and heavy spirits and promises rest for our souls.

May God help us to reflect that same heart of peace and grace to our world today. Giving a simple gift, a smile, a kind word, a meal, or just taking the time to listen to a friend who’s hurting, or letting someone in through a long line of holiday traffic. Just the little things can be more meaningful than we could ever know, to another who feels weary or burdened.

Breathing in His grace today. And taking time to notice those around me.

Hope you are too.

Dear God, 

Thank you that your yoke is easy and your burden is light.  Thank you that you promise to give to us, those who feel worried, hurried, pressured, and stressed; deep rest and peace for our souls – if we’ll just come before you. Thank you for your reminder that we don’t have to carry it all. Forgive us for the times we try to be self-sufficient, for not taking time to rest. Thank you for the refreshing that comes from your Spirit, filling us with joy, covering us with your shield of favor and blessing, leading us forward with hope.  Equip us to be those who notice the lonely, the hurting. Help us to slow down, to take time, to point others to you.

In Jesus’ Name,

Amen

Find more by Debbie at http://www.debbiemcdaniel.com, FacebookInstagram or Twitter.

Reading 19: Jesus Christ is Supreme

THE CHRISTMAS STORY

Many years after Isaiah and Micah prophesied about Jesus the Messiah, the apostle Paul wrote a letter to the church at Colosse to tell them that Jesus was both God and a human being. Paul included this beautiful hymn in praise of the glory and supremacy of Christ.

Colossians 1:15-20

 

The Supremacy of Christ

15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. 16 For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. 17 He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18 And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. 19 For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, 20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.