“I am coming soon. Hold on to what you have, so that no one will take your crown. The one who is victorious I will make a pillar in the temple of my God. Never again will they leave it. I will write on them the name of my God and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which is coming down out of heaven from my God; and I will also write on them my new name. Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches.” Revelation 3:11-13
Jesus is coming back. Now these words were penned more than 1,900 years ago and yet Jesus said soon. It’s not a typo. It’s not proof that the Bible is inaccurate. It is in fact proof that humans do not understand time as God does.
To the Church of Smyrna, He said they would be persecuted for ten days [Revelation 2:10], an expression in that day that meant just a little while not a literal ten days. In describing human impatience and time confusion, the apostle Peter said that, with the Lord a day is like a thousand years and a thousand years is like a day [2 Peter 3:8]. What God says is soon, humans misconstrue as slow. What He purposes to be patience, we interpret as lies or inaccuracies. Of course, God is all-knowing and all-wise, and we are not.
Jesus encouraged his churches, therefore, to hold onto their faith and patient endurance of cultural conflicts. If they didn’t, it was like letting someone else rob them of their crown of life. It’s kind of like when we give someone else our anger-buttons. We should never allow someone else that kind of control in our lives. Neither should we allow the world to control how we respond to Christ. Rather we should let Christ determine how we respond to the world.
And if we are victorious in this, then we–like the Philadelphians–will become a permanent fixture in God’s temple, which is heaven. We will be marked in the books of life with Jesus’ own name and the name of God’s heavenly Jerusalem stamped on us so that no one can disown us ever again.
Here is another evidence that this scripture is both historical and prophetic, Jesus said that the new Jerusalem would descend from heaven from God Himself. To date, no heavenly constructed Jerusalem has replaced the earthly Jerusalem. But it will. And it will soon. Whether in the next instant or in another hundred, thousand, or million years from now. God’s timing is perfect, and every measurement of human time is just a blink of an eye compared to infinity, eternity.
Are you ready for Jesus’ return? What about your friends and family? God is real. Jesus’ sacrifice to forgive us from our sins is real. Heaven is real. Is His Lordship in your life equally as real?