Today's Word of Encouragement from Wayne:
"Then one of the elders answered, saying to me, ‘These who are clothed in the white robes, who are they, and where have they come from?’ I said to him, ‘My lord, you know.’ And he said to me, ‘These are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. For this reason, they are before the throne of God; and they serve Him day and night in His temple; and He who sits on the throne will spread His tabernacle over them.’"
This amazing portrait of washed "in the blood" Christians arriving in heaven, and "for this reason" ministering to the Lord "in His temple," shows us that our Abba Father finally receives what He has always desired, which is for all of His people to be known as, and to actually be, a kingdom of "priests to our God" (Revelation 5:10). In the great Messianic prophecy through Isaiah, which Jesus quoted a portion from when He began His public ministry (Luke 4:17-21), the Lord said "But you will be called the priests of the Lord; You will be spoken of as ministers of our God" (Isaiah 61:6).
When God delivered the people of Israel out of Egypt, He called them all to a kingdom of Priests, in a covenant relationship, to Him. He instructed Moses saying, "Thus you shall say to the house of Jacob and tell the sons of Israel: ‘You yourselves have seen what I did to the Egyptians, and how I bore you on eagles’ wings, and brought you to Myself. Now then, if you will indeed obey My voice and keep My covenant, then you shall be known as My own possession [literal: ‘special treasure’] among all the peoples, for all the earth is mine; and you shall be to Me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’ These are the words that you shall speak to the sons of Israel" (Exodus 19:3-6).
Unfortunately, the history of God’s often expressed will for all of His people to be "a kingdom of priests" is that His people seldom rise to the call, choosing instead to let their religion diminish to a (distant) ritual observance when what God wants and wills is for His people to be filled with His Spirit, serving and being transformed in His presence, as His own "special treasure" on this earth, a kingdom of priests dedicated to Him. Even in the book of Genesis, we see God coming to the "garden in the cool of the day," looking for fellowship with Adam and Eve and sadly, because sin had entered the picture, they failed to show up and our Abba Father called out to the first people saying "Where are you?" (Genesis 3:8-9).
So it’s a big deal in the book of Revelation that our Abba Father finally receives what He has always called for and it is unmistakable to see that we, the present day body of Christ, are the ones called to be this kingdom of priests. Are we going to let sin enter the picture, like Adam and eve, and hide from God out of fear, when what He wants is a kingdom of priests serving in His presence? Are we going to ignore God’s call, like Israel did, and instead of being a kingdom of priests, delegate priesthood to "professionals" while the rest of the people coast in ignorance and disobedience? Or are we going to say yes to God and rise up in this generation to be, as the apostle Peter wrote, "a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s Own possession" (1st Peter 2:9)?
In heaven we see redeemed people "in the white robes" serving day and night in His temple and these white robed people represent the entire body of Christ, for verse 9 of Revelation 7 says this, "After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could count, from every nation and all tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the lamb, clothed in white robes, and palm branches were in their hands." This huge multitude is the body of Christ and they are all ministering to the Lord, just as God’s wants. Oh may we all minister to the Lord now and become, for His Own sake and glory, what He has always called us to be, "a spiritual house for a holy priesthood." God gets His heart’s desire in heaven. Let’s give Him His heart’s desire now. Hallelujah!