He who overcomes, I will grant to him to sit down with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne.Revelation 3:21 (NASB)
Recently our Bible readings group dug into John’s book we call Revelation. I’m not going to lie, 1) It’s a complicated book, and 2) I tend to shy away from trying to interpret its imagery. There’s a part of the book I really love though. It’s the part where Jesus tells John the good news he should share with each of the churches.
John was to write a letter to seven churches and condemn or commend (or both) the behavior of their members and leaders. Each of these letters has one thing in common regardless of how bad things seemed—there was a beautiful promise made to those who overcome.
Take a minute to ponder what is promised “To the One Who Overcomes”
To the one who overcomes, I will permit him to eat from the tree of life that is in the paradise of God.
(Letter to Ephesus.)
The one who overcomes will in no way be harmed by the second death.
(Letter to Smyrna.)
To the one who overcomes, I will give him some of the hidden manna, and I will give him a white stone, and on that stone will be written a new name.
(Letter to Pergamum.)
To the one who overcomes and who continues in my deeds until the end, I will give him authority over the nations . . . just as I have received the right to rule from my Father—and I will give him the morning star.
(Letter to Thyatira.)
The one who overcomes will be dressed like them in white clothing, and I will never erase his name from the book of life, but will declare his name before my Father and before his angels.
(Letter to Sardis.)
The one who overcomes I will make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he will never depart from it. I will write on him the name of my God and the name of the city of my God . . . and my new name as well.
(Letter to Philadelphia.)
To the one who overcomes, I will grant permission to sit with me on my throne, just as I too overcame and sat down with my Father on his throne.
(Letter to Laodicea.)
There’s another part of Revelation I really love, and it’s also about the amazing future God has in store for His people:
And I heard a loud voice from the throne, saying, “Behold, the tabernacle of God is among men, and He will dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself will be among them, and He will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away.”Revelation 21:3–4
There are plenty of great lessons to be learned from a deeper study of these seven churches and the letters John was to send them. But today I’m going to meditate on what it would mean to be among those—like Jesus—who overcame.
(Note to self.)
Please share your strategies for overcoming obstacles, trials, fears, and failures as a comment! (Any comments are welcome for that matter.)