Holiness Is Pleasing Jesus
We urge . . . that you should abound more and more, just as you received from us how you ought to walk and to please God.
-1 Thessalonians 4:1, emphasis added
In the first chapter of Revelation, John captures several characteristics of Christ that point to fearing the Lord. Each characteristic is a wonderful lesson to meditate on throughout the day.
Jesus is God the Son. The "Son of God" in Revelation 2:18 is not the same as the "Son of Man" in Revelation 1:13. "Son of God" signifies the fullness of His divine power. Why does He introduce himself as the Son of God? He is warning His church not to compromise nor tolerate evil.
Jesus is all-seeing, all-knowing, and always present. He has "eyes like flames of fire" (1:14). Why does He say that? Because Christ is always penetrating, discerning, seeing, and assessing the thoughts and actions of man: "I, the Lord, search the heart, I test the mind, even to give every man according to his ways," And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are . . . open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account (Jeremiah 17:10; Hebrews 4:13).
Jesus is the Judge of the entire universe, and of my sin.He has feet like "burnished bronze" (1:15a). Bronze almost always pictures judgment upon sin: "For the Father judges no one, but has committed all judgment to the Son" (John 5:22).
Before Jesus addressed the corruption in the church at Thyatira, He acknowledged these good things about its saints: "I know your works, love, service, faith, and your patience; and as for your works, the last are more than the first" (Revelation 2:19).
Jesus commended the Thyatirans for these qualities: Christ saw what they did for Him; He saw their love (this is the only church with love noted); their ministry as servants to others; their faithfulness, loyalty, and fidelity; their steadfast endurance; and that they were growing because their latter deeds were greater than those at the beginning.
Here is a lesson to meditate upon: The Christian life is a life of works, love, service, faith, and patience. Christ commended the saints at Thyatira because they did not pull back in their service. Paul gave the Thessalonians a similar commendation: We . . . thank God always for you . . . because your faith grows exceedingly, and the love of every one of you all abounds toward each other (2 Thessalonians 1:3). The spiritual lives of these Thessalonians did not hit a peak and then decline. If Christ is alive in you, there will be growth. No growth indicates that you are sick, and that you need to honor Christ's holiness by returning to Him.
If you can remember a time when you served and loved the Lord more than now, you need to repent, or end up like the Thyatirans who failed to receive the approval of Christ. The Lord wants you to ever-increasingly love, seek, and worship Him!
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