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December 30, 2021 3:00 am
So the invitation is come because of the glory of the person who invite you come because of the exclusivity of heaven and, because of the truthfulness of Scripture, because of the truthfulness of our band forces overrunning Kabul, Afghanistan, and crowds rushing to the airport, hoping to make it onto a flight in order to escape to safety. It was a final boarding call but no one wanted to miss.
Well, as a final call of a much greater magnitude that you need to be aware of the question is are you ready for it. John MacArthur helps you answer that question today as we wrap up a compelling study titled final call God's last invitation and now to introduce today's lesson with a bit of review.
Here's John MacArthur. Well let's open our Bibles to the final chapter of the Bible. The 22nd chapter of Revelation. Revelation chapter 22 God's last invitation we have been looking at this tremendous closing invitation so the invitation is not the one who is thirsty, let him take the water of life without costs. There is no charge.
Just come and drink receive eternal life received forgiveness and you should be compelled to do that because of the person who asked you and because of the exclusivity of heaven. You will be left out if you are not forgiven, and you will not be forgiven unless you come to Christ alone grants forgiveness. Thirdly, this too is a vital incentive come because of the glory of the person who invite you come because of the exclusives exclusivity of heaven and come because of the truthfulness of Scripture come because of the truthfulness of Scripture is so important that the Bible ends with an affirmation of its truthfulness that is found in verses 18 and 19. I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book. If anyone adds to them, God shall add to him the plagues, which are written in this book and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part from the tree of life and from the holy city, which are written in this book of these words are to be heated. This is not the first affirmation of Scripture in this chapter go back to verse six the angel who was speaking to John says these words are faithful and true, and then in verse 10 and he said to me do not seal up the words of the prophecy of this book for the time is near. The words are true they must be proclaimed and they must not be altered, don't add to them and don't take away from them.
They are true, proclaimed him. Sinners need to respond because of the truthfulness of these words.
This is the word of the living eternal God, and you better respond if in endeavoring to avoid the clear revelation of God. You add something shall be added to the plagues that are written in it. If endeavoring to avoid what it says you take away from it. You will have no part in the tree of life. Now all through revelation, we have faced the doom of those who reject Christ. The world is been destroyed. As we've seen through this panorama of the future.
People have been plagued and tortured and starved and shaken and demonized and scared and maimed and killed and damned, and consigned to a lake of fire and all of those pictures. All of those visions, all of those prophecies are true, that is exactly what will happen. That is exactly what is happening now as people are going to hell without Christ and then Jesus himself adds a further statement about the permanence of this truth. Verse 18 and I believe this to should be in red letters. I testify, I don't think that's John. I think that's Jesus speaking. Why, because verse 20 says he who testifies to these things says yes I am coming here, our Lord himself offers an extended word of testimony regarding the authority and finality of the prophecy it commissioned John to write it but he was the author of I'm telling you this is true don't tamper with it. Don't add to it and don't take away from it nonetheless what he calls it. I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book.
First of all, obviously he has the book of Revelation in mind the book of Revelation is prophecy. It says it there.
The words of the book of this prophecy.
These words make up a book that is prophetic. This is a practice you realize there are people who don't even want to admit that this is a prophecy. It was given through John the apostle, who was the prophet. It was a prophecy that came through a prophet, and John was that prophet, he was that spokesman back in chapter 1 verse three it says blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of the prophecy, and here it is a prophecy in the predictive sense. This is a prophecy put in the book authored by God through a prophet, not to be tampered with.
This is a warning it's really a way to guard the book. This is very important. It's not a new way to guard the ago a book. It's an old way. In fact, way back in Deuteronomy in the Pentateuch. The first collection of books, but God ever inspired listen to what you read in Deuteronomy 42 Deuteronomy.
Remember, was the last book in the Pentateuch, which was the first book really the first volume given by God through Moses. Listen to what it says in Deuteronomy. You shall not verse two you shall not add to the word which I am commanding you, nor take away from it. That's the same thing precisely don't add to it. Don't take away from it, don't touch it take what it says exactly as God gave it in Deuteronomy 12 again comes the warning. Verse 32, whatever I command you, you shall be careful to do. You shall not add to nor take away from it.
So why did you put it at the end of Romans. Why did he put it at the end of Ephesians. Why did he put it in the book of acts widely put at the end of the Hebrews put at the end of Revelation because revelation is at the end of Revelation. It's at the end of the New Testament. It's the end of all scriptural revelation and so it goes to sweep across all that has been given, and he also put at the end of Revelation because revelation God surely knew would be the book most assaulted and that is the case warning forbids any alteration of this book and any alteration of anything that God has ever written, which goes for all 66 books. These words of Jesus, then head off any attempt to add or subtract from the books content through some deliberate falsification, some distortion of the teaching unit and I would go for a for a purposeful falsification and misinterpretation. Remember that this book of Revelation when it was written immediately when it was disseminated to the seven churches.
It would've been very unpopular. For example, with Jezebel and her followers who are in Thyatira, it would've been very unpopular with the propagator's of the false religion of Nicola Leninism it would been very very unpopular with those that Thyatira hood embraced the deep things of Satan, it would've been very unpopular with the Jewish slanderers mentioned in chapter 3 verse nine and it would've been very popular with the unpopular with many others, and so they would've immediately began to assaulted and they did, and they're still salting it so is the warning don't tamper with it. It refers to revelation Ellison of this, but since Revelation follow my thought takes the biblical story takes biblical history takes redemptive history follow this all the way to the very end, doesn't it. This book takes us all the way to the eternal state all the way to the end, the eternal lake of fire.
The eternal heaven and new earth. This book takes us all the way to the very end. That's why it's the last book written written several decades after the earlier New Testament books. It takes the account of God's plan all the way to the end. So there's nothing to be added to it and we could also say anything added anywhere in the Scripture to any book in the Scripture would have to be added to Revelation, because revelation is the end if you wanted to add to Scripture, it would have to be post the book of Revelation wouldn't so anything added anywhere is added to Revelation, which is the end and there's no need to add anything because the story goes clearer into the eternal state. Nothing more needs to be said Dr. Thomas says the predictive portions project from John's lifetime all the way into the eternal state any type of prophetic utterance would intrude into the domain of this coverage and constitute either an addition or subtraction from revelations content so the final book of the Bible is also the concluding product of New Testament prophecy. It also marks the close of the New Testament Canon since the prophetic gift was the divinely chosen means for communicating the inspired books of the canon" that really sums it up.
No more Revelation, no more gift of prophecy in its revelatory sense. Nothing needs to be said because everything is said clear out to the end.
There is nothing more to add.
No more Scripture to be given, and now we can take the delivered Scripture and give it to the saints intact.
If anyone verse 18. Add this to them, God shall add to him the plagues, which are written in this book is nothing more to add. The canon is closed the gift of prophecy and its revelatory senses ended.
No more profits to speak no more apostles to write no more words from heaven.
No more spiritual vision under the pledge here the warning here is to those who do add to Scripture whether there liberals or higher critics or false prophets or frauds or fakes.
Those who tamper with truth to falsified to mitigate its message to alter it are going to feel the vengeance of God is nothing that you need to add to this, and to add to it, is to incur its judgments. In verse 19.
If anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part from the tree of life, from the holy city, which are written in this book is equally dangerous.
Of course, to diminish Scripture. There are some people who wouldn't want to add to it. They just want to take away from remember when I was in seminary studying liberal theology. We came across a theologian who had finally concluded there were only 23 verses in the whole Bible that were actually inspired by God and there was a great effort made to inform all of us to seminary students about German higher criticism which set its goal set as its goal to demythologized the Bible liberalism old liberalism, new liberalism, neo-orthodoxy, whatever you want to call it higher criticism. The graph will house in GPD theory. All of that kind of stuff that you learn about and philosophy in seminary sets out as its objective to strip from the Scripture. Everything that offends the sinner, God shall take away his part from the tree of life, from the holy city, which are written in this book goes, people won't be in heaven take away is a play on words, you take away from the words of this book and God will take away your part in heaven. The part you might have had if you hadn't tampered with Scripture. They you have to understand the true believer wouldn't tamper with Scripture you see anyone who knows God. Anyone who knows Christ.
Anyone who was on the way to heaven is going to treat Scripture with great respect. To say with the Psalmist. Oh how I love thy law is going to say it is my delight every day you see God's word is absolute truth, faithful, permanent and complete not to be altered not to be changed not to be added to not to be taken away from and true believers understand the fact that this warning is here indicate several things to me. First of all, it indicates that men would be prone to tamper with Scripture and probably prone to tamper with Revelation more than any other that is been true. Secondly indicates that men would deny its validity because it is so specific prophetically and that is been true but it also indicates to me that the Holy Spirit wants to make a final sweeping statement about what you do with Scripture altogether, and the bottom line is God has written it, don't erase it and don't expand it. Sale this concerns me a little bit because maybe I've been guilty of. Maybe you are saying that maybe you have me help you to sort some things out.
First of all, our Lord is not threatening those believers who make an error in judgment is not threatening those who make an error in discernment is not threatening those who have rendered and in adequate interpretation what he is doing is threatening unbelievers who engage in deliberate falsification and emasculation, and deliberate and deceptive misinterpretation. Those whom Paul calls corrupters of the Scripture. No real believer. No real lover of the Lord of the truth no one born again of the incorruptible seed of the word of God. No one washed by the cleansing blood.
No one regenerated by the washing word would willfully mutilate the Scripture. He wouldn't willfully poison his own food wouldn't do that but true believer would say with David. Oh how I love thy law believer may say I'd I don't understand it all. I am not able to explain it all. I may not interpret it exactly with precision. Every time I may not always touch the depths of it.
I may not be able to understand its mysteries. But I love it and I would never tamper with it. That is the sign of a true believer. Jesus even said in John chapter 8 and verse 31 Jesus said this, if you abide in my word, then you are truly disciples of mine if you abide in my word, if you rest in my word. If you hear and obey my word.
That's what he's talking about over.
In John 14 verse 23. If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and then at the very least it's true of the believer that the word of God is everything to us. As babes we desire the milk of the word that we may grow know believers don't adulterate. The word of God. Believers don't tamper with the word of God. True Christians keep it honor it, love it, we may wrongly understand some parts of it are theology could be off here and there, but this is not a willful assault on the truth great commentator of years past incisive CISS wrote what I think is a very helpful paragraph. Listen to this with an honest and prayerful heart, and with the Solomon awful warnings before my eyes. He writes I have endeavored to ascertain and indicate what our gracious Lord has been so particular to make known and defend if I have read anything into this book, which has not been put there or read out of it. Anything which he has put their with the profoundest sorrow would I recant and willingly burn up the books. He was a writer. He wrote this commentary wrote a commentary on Revelation. Further, he says this. If I have anything gone beyond the limits of do's objection to what is written. If feebleness or rashness or overconfidence in my own understanding has distorted anything.
I can only deplore the fault and pray God to send a more competent man to unfold to us the truth which your stand written according to the grace and light given me.
I have spoken.
If I error God forgive me if I am right.
God bless my feeble testimony in either case, God speed his everlasting truth" that a great state. The word is true Revelation in all Scripture is true true Christians believe it and keep it and love it and obey it.
The fact that it is true is incentive enough that the sinner better, because what it says is going to happen is in fact going to happen and you will have no part in the tree of life which is the picture of eternal life. You will have no entrance into the gates of the eternal city. So the invitation and the incentives respect for the person who gives you the invitation the exclusivity of heaven and the truth of the word of God and finally, one last point sinner should come because of the certainty of Christ's return, the certainty of Christ's return. One final time.
Verse 20 G who testifies to these things says yes I am coming quickly. Amen. Says John, Lord Jesus one last reminder, the last words Jesus spoke these are they one last reminder John hears from the Lord himself. The last words Jesus spoke heard on earth next will be the shout when he comes for his church. The last words. Yes, I am coming quickly. Soon going to happen. Folks exactly the way the book of Revelation describes it certain. John affirms amen that mean, so let it be, let it be come, Lord Jesus wasn't made means I'm ready doesn't I'm ready, like Paul, it means I love his appearing. I longed for his appearing.
Peter recognize that there were false prophets who scoffed at the coming of Christ. Their love of sensuality, their greed caused them to mock the return of Jesus Christ.
Second Peter chapter 3.
These mocking scoffers come and say where is the promise of his company for ever since the fathers fell asleep, all continues just as it was from the beginning of creation, everything just going along it will keep going along. It's the theory of uniformity will always be the same.
It won't. Peter reminds or have you forgotten the flood to destroy the whole world things are going to continue the way they are. Jesus is coming and when he comes everything in Revelation will happen. Can you say a man come, Lord Jesus, I can I trust you can and then the benediction of the Bible and wouldn't you know when you know that if the Lord was going to pick a last word. It would be grace the last word is the grace of the Lord Jesus be with all. Amen.
And the last thing the Bible sits is that there is available to sinners. What grace, grace after all this grace is it yours. Are you ready let's pray father and we rejoice that Jesus is coming essay with John. Even so, Lord Jesus, I pray for sinners, unrepentant and unredeemed unforgiven. They might hear the invitation to come and they might know that it is you, the living Lord of heaven inviting them one in a magnanimous and an amazing thing that you the eternal holy one would invite sinners to come may they realize the exclusivity of heaven that it's only for those of been forgiven and none of the others will ever enter but will spend eternity in the lake of fire and may they know full well that the Bible is true that the word you have written is true and that you are coming very soon, just don't know house we all of us be prepared and watchful one who comes to thief in the night, may we be ready. May we be looking loving the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our God and Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ and his name, and with that, John MacArthur, Chancellor of the Masters University in seminary, concludes today's lesson from the study titled final call John as the world stands on the precipice overlooking 2022.
The fact is, most of humanity is on more of a cliff than they could ever imagine. And that question you asked at the end. Today, are you ready, there is no more important question to ask ourselves now assessing some of the other day somebody's asked me about the death rate with covert and I said we know what the death rate is one per person. That's right.
Is the death rate is part of the men once to die, and after this the judgment. People are so concerned with making sure they do everything to enhance the life they live here preoccupied with the physical things with the health with exercise with relationships.
Whatever. And and there there there are coming to a cliff and after that death, that is inevitable for every person there is the reality of eternity is why Paul said bodily exercise profits little, but proclaiming the gospel has eternal consequences. So it's very very important that people think beyond time. James said life is a vapor that appears for a little time and vanishes away. James also said you can't say will tomorrow will do this in the will do that you have to save God wills there'll will be a tomorrow so it's time for Christians to proclaim judgment. The inevitability of judgment, and to declare the gospel in the light of that judgment. So we been trying to help you to do that by equipping you in our current study called final call. The subtitle has been God's last invitation to a doomed world.
Everyone assumes they have lots of time they can live their life. Anyway they want, but truth is, the clock is ticking. They have no idea when they're going to take their last breath, either from death of the Lord's return and the question, are you ready is the very urgent question.
So we have a booklet that will send you free of charge just for the asking.
It's titled examine your self for you. Here the question, are you ready and you say, I'm not sure this little booklet called examine yourself will be the very very most important thing that you can read and Phil will provide the details in just a moment and if you are ready for Christ return. You are also ready to use each moment in 2022 for his glory and as the Lord allows will be here every day of the new year unleashing God's truth one verse at a time, helping you to know the Bible better and thus to know the Lord better strengthening your convictions about the truth equipping you for greater service to the church and the family and greater impact to the unsaved world. So stick with us and again request your free booklet examine yourself.
Do it today, and friend. You don't have to struggle to know if you're Christian you can know whether your salvation is the real thing. In this booklet can be a big help in that it shows you what Christ himself taught are the marks of saving faith, then it will help you have confidence that your salvation is genuine or it will show you that you need to repent and follow him on his terms to get a free copy of John's booklet titled examine yourself, contact us today. Our staff is currently enjoying the holidays with their families, but you can send your request by email to firstname.lastname@example.org once more that's email@example.com or you can request your free copy of John's booklet examine firstname.lastname@example.org that's our website one more time. TTY.org and friend. The examine yourself booklet is just one of many resources that we make available free of charge at our website. There are thousands of tools to help you better grasp God's word. We also send out free books and CDs each month by mail, and we're currently translating John's sermons into multiple languages so that even more people around the world can benefit all of that, God honoring ministry is made possible by the listeners like you if you'd like to help us continue to reach people with biblical truth, it changes lives. Consider expressing your year in email@example.com that's TTY.org now for John MacArthur and the entire Greece. Do you staff, I'm Phil Johnson. Thanks for tuning in today and join us tomorrow when John shows you the characteristics of true repentance, with another 30 minutes of unleashing God's truth one verse at a time on grace to you