“John to the seven churches that are in Asia: Grace to you and peace from him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven spirits who are before his throne, and from Jesus Christ the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of kings on earth. To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood and made us a kingdom, priests to his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.” – Revelation 1:4-6
Today we have the blessed privilege and remarkable responsibility to gather with the body of Christ, His holy bride, His church. It was on the Lord’s Day (vs. 10) that John received the Revelation which we still have with us to this day.
Our text tells us that the original recipients of this letter were the seven churches in the province of Asia. This is the area we today know as Turkey. Each of the seven churches held their own significance in the various areas of the region.
In worship, we are busy in covenantal dialogue. The Lord speaks and we may answer. And as the Lord begins His conversation with us in worship, He gives us His comforting greeting. To be greeted by God – what an encouraging, soul strengthening blessing!!
Pause and think about this in your meditations today (Don’t read God’s Word too quickly; I confess I do far too often). To have grace and peace announced to the congregation – that is precisely what we need. Grace is not our deserving. Peace with God, secured by our Redeemer in this sin-stained world (including the sin in our lives), gives us life heartening perspective. These words are from Christ Himself Who, “loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood” (vs. 5). He calls us to His service – to be His kings and priests. Amazing! Amazing grace! Do not take God’s greeting to us for granted. All glory and dominion belongs to Christ forever!!
Suggestions for prayer
Earnestly and prayerfully reflect on the wonder-working love of our Saviour. May the song in our heart be “Glory to God the Father, glory be to God the Son, glory be to God the Spirit, God Almighty, Three in One! Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Glory be to Him alone.” (Trinity Psalter Hymnal 213:1)
Pastor Peter Vellenga serves as an itinerant preacher in the churches of Southern Ontario. This daily devotional is available in a print edition you can buy at Nearer to God Devotional.