Devotion Time: November 29 – December 5, 2010

Suggested Instructions

Read the assigned passage for the day and answer the reflection question(s) provided.  There are no memory verses. Click here to download the DT packet.

Daily Devotion and Bible Reading Plan

Monday                     11/29                Revelation 17
Tuesday                     11/30                Revelation 18
Wednesday              12/01                Revelation 19
Thursday                  12/02                Revelation 20
Friday                       12/03                 Revelation 21
Saturday                   12/04                 Revelation 22
Sunday                      12/05                 No assigned DT Text

MONDAY, 11/29 –Revelation 17

Reflection Questions

vv. 2-6, 15

Consider how the text describes the scope of influence that the prostitute exercised, and the fact that such a widespread force was hostile to the “saints … who bore testimony to Jesus.”  What does this show about the position of believers in the world’s system, and what mindset must I cultivate as one of the saints in light of this?

vv. 8; 13-14; 17

“The beast appeared once, is not presently evident, but will in the future again make his presence known.  Evil is persistent.”

“That John’s beast ‘is not’ refers to his defeat by the Lamb on Calvary… It is this apparent revival of Satan’s power and authority over the world after his mortal wound…that causes the deceived of earth to follow him.”

  • Compare/contrast the beast and the Lamb (cf. Revelation 1:8; 4:8)
  • Why are so many people deceived by the beast?  What can I learn about the character of the Enemy (Satan) from these verses?
  • How can I guard myself against falling prey to the deceptive power of Satan?

TUESDAY, 11/30– Revelation 18

Reflection Questions

vv.3-8

“Economic security would be removed from Babylon’s subjects if they did not cooperate with her idolatry.  Such security is too great a temptation to resist.  Therefore the verb ‘drank’ refers to the willingness of society in the Roman Empire to commit itself to idolatry in order to maintain economic security.  Once one imbibes, the intoxicating influence removes all desire to resist Babylon’s destructive influence, blinds one to Babylon’s own ultimate insecurity and to God as the source of real security, and numbs one against any fear of coming judgment”

Come out of her, my people […] Even in its OT setting, this was no mere warning to leave the actual city of Babylon, much less here in Revelation […] Wherever there are idolatry, prostitution, self-glorification, self-sufficiency, pride, complacency, reliance on luxury and wealth, avoidance of suffering, violence against life (v.24), there is Babylon. Christians are to separate themselves ideologically and physically from all the forms of Babylon (chs. 2-3).[…]Babylon’s threefold web of sin is described as satiety (‘luxury’), pride (‘boasts, I sit as a queen’), and avoidance of suffering (‘I will never mourn’). These three may be interrelated. Luxury leads to boastful self-sufficiency (Eze 28:5), while the desire to avoid suffering leads to the dishonest pursuit of luxury (Eze 28:18).”

  • How is Babylon’s sin described?  What aspects of Babylon appeal to me, and how can I guard my life against being lured by Babylon?

vv.9-19

  • What are the three groups that mourned over the fall of Babylon, and what is the common denominator behind their reasons for mourning?
  • What lessons does this passage teach regarding the ultimate destiny of those who place their hope in wealth?  In what ways can I apply this lesson in my life?

vv.11-13

  • What can be gleaned about the lifestyle and value system of the culture of Babylon from the list of commodities that the merchants once sold to Babylon?
  • What is the relationship between that kind of value system and the selling of “bodies and souls of men”?  What are some parallels that can be drawn between Babylon’s culture and our modern-day culture?

WEDNESDAY, 12/01 – Revelation 19

Reflection Questions

vv.1-10

  • Reflect on the praise that God deserves and the fact that I am blessed to have been invited to the “wedding supper of the Lamb.”
  • What does the fact that God’s justice will ultimately triumph compel me to do today?  How must I live in order for that fact to compel me to praise Him?

vv.11-16

  • How does the vision of Jesus as the Judge on a white horse contrast with the way that he entered Jerusalem (cf., Matthew 21:5-7)?  What can I learn about the heart of Jesus for me from this contrast (cf., Phil 2:6-8)?
  • What is odd about the description of the robe that Jesus is wearing as opposed to the robes that the armies of heaven were wearing?  Given that this is before any battle took place, what is the significance of the blood on Jesus’ robe (Rev 5:6-9)?  How does this lead me to appreciate the power of the cross more?
  • Reflect on the 3 names of Jesus in this passage and think about how personal these names have become for me.

THURSDAY, 12/02 – Revelation 20

Reflection Questions

vv.4-6

  • How would the persecuted Christians of the early church have felt upon reading this passage”?  What does the promise of eternal life embolden me to do?

vv.11-15

  • “…through life we are writing our own destiny…we are acquiring a record which will bring us either honor or shame in the presence of God…It is not so much God who judges a man as it is that a man writes his own judgment.”   What kind of story can I commit to writing with my life today?
  • What should be my life’s priority in light of the reality of the book of life?

FRIDAY, 12/03 – Revelation 21

Reflection Questions

vv.1-4

  • What is the final state of the people of God?  What does this show about God’s heart for His people, for me?
  • What are the things of the “old order” that will have passed away?  How does this challenge the tendency to allow suffering and pain (or fear of it) to dictate my life?

v.8

  • What can I learn from the fact that cowardice is listed along with all these other vices/wickedness?  Why would cowardice be associated with wickedness?  In what ways does this challenge my approach towards my insecurity problems?

vv.15-25

  • How does the heavenly Jerusalem compare with the earthly Jerusalem? What is the significance of the fact that there will be no need for a temple?
  • Reflect on the picture of heavenly Jerusalem.  How does this encourage me living in the midst of a world of frailty?

SATURDAY, 12/04 – Revelation 22

Reflection Questions

vv.1-2

  • What is the source of the river of life?  What lessons can I learn regarding the relationship between true flourishing of life and God’s authority (symbolized by the throne)?
  • What is the significance of the presence of the tree of life in heaven?  (cf., Gen 3:21-24)   What can I learn about the faithfulness and zeal of God through this?

v.7

“Soon…the time is near.  There are those who think John was mistaken to believe that Jesus would return quickly.  But probably the words underscore the immediacy, not the timing, of Christ’s return.  He can come at any time; every generation should expect his coming.”

  • What is my response to the fact that Jesus can come at any time?  What are some of the things that I need to do in preparation for his return?

vv.16,17

  • What can I learn about the role of the church in this world from the fact that the invitation to come is offered by the Spirit and the bride?  How can I be this voice of invitation to those around me?
  • What are the “qualifications” for coming and taking the gift of the water of life?  What does it mean to be thirsty for the water of life?

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