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Seeking to equip people to live as Christian disciples wherever God has placed them.

Saturday, February 10, 2018

“Jesus’ Touch”

Rev. 1:12-18

John of Patmos had a phenomenal encounter.  He has been imprisoned on the island of Patmos.  Jesus appears to him in all his resurrection glory.  The most dominant aspect of the glorified Christ is the brightness of his person.  He is in dazzling white.  His voice is like the sound of many waters.  Out of his mouth comes a sharp two-edged sword which we know represents the Word of God (Rev. 19:13-15; Heb. 4:12).

John was one of many victims of the Roman Empire.  The Empire demanded unconditional allegiance.   Those who questioned it were quickly disposed of.  We believe that both Peter and Paul were sentenced to death by the Emperor.  John here is facing an uncertain future.  Yet he has a direct encounter with the glorified Jesus (as James, John and Peter did on the Mount of Transfiguration and as Paul did on the Road to Damascus).  John is overwhelmed by the vision.  He falls at the feet of Jesus as one dead.  This encounter is beyond imagining (it rendered Paul blind for several days).

However, while John is lying prostrate, Jesus places his right hand on him and touches him.  Jesus then says simply, “Do not be afraid.”  This echoes the same action and statement that Jesus makes to the three disciples on the Mount of Transfiguration (Matt. 17:7).  Here in Revelation Jesus gives the explicit reason why we have no need to fear.  Jesus is alive forevermore.  He has the keys of Death and Hades.  What this means is that whenever anyone dies they go into the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ.  Jesus is both judge and savior.  He is also the one who invites all who are “weary and carrying heavy burdens” to come to him (Matt. 11:28).

The glorified Jesus Christ takes away all our fears including the fear of death (Heb. 2:14-15).

Eternal and gracious God I praise you for your victory over Death and Hades.  Please touch me and take away my fears.  I pray this in Jesus’ name, Amen.