Friday, June 22, 2018

Hold On

Hold On!

“ Because you have kept My command to persevere, I also will keep you from the hour of trial which shall come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth. Behold, I am coming quickly! Hold fast what you have, that no one may take your crown” (Revelation 3:10-11).

Just hold on, I'm comin'
Hold on, I'm comin'
Hold on, I'm comin'
Hold on, I'm comin’

I think many of us know this famous rhythm and blues song from Memphis. It came to my head when I was reading Jesus’ wonderful promises to the churches in Revelation. The Scripture quote is to the church of Philadelphia for their patience and persevering faith. God was telling them to continue to hold on to their faith, because He would be coming soon (quickly). We are in the end times and waiting for the soon return of Jesus Christ to rule and reign. We know from Scripture that He is coming soon, ever since He ascended telling His disciples so. Throughout Scripture God says for us to persevere because trials will bring completeness if we just hold on in faith. That is a wonderful but difficult message to hear for 2000 years. Yet today as all of the prophesies of the Old and New Testament have been completed, we have a new and imminent sense of Jesus soon return.

This 1966 release of “Hold on, I’m Comin’” might be a theme song for Christians today. Never mind that originally Sam and Dave gave it this title because they were trying to finish it and Dave was off in the restroom. Another legend is that the song was recorded in a restroom because the sound was better. Whichever the story, I want to take the words and speak of God comin’ and our waiting patiently.

Revelation 3:3 says “hold on and repent.” I think this is the proclamation of evangelists through the ages, “Repent! And be baptized.”  The writer of Hebrews says, “Seeing that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast to our confession” (Hebrews 4:14). I see many losing hope in this crumbling world. Morally our country has long since lost its compass. The world is at war and has been for a long time. Earthquakes and hurricanes are increasing. Yes, and it seems that most of the world has heard the gospel or good news.

So, “hold on” for the time is near. This should give us staying power and fuel for the rest of the journey. Eugene Petersen, the writer of The Message paraphrase of the Bible, speaks of our faith walk as Long Obedience in The Same Direction. This is like the pilgrimage of God’s people to Jerusalem up the sanctuary hill to the temple. Just keep walking and singing the psalms or whatever word of God that brings you strength and hope and “May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of unity among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus, so that with one heart and mouth you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ” (Romans 15:5-6).

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