The world may think that God has forsaken it because of the death it sees. But this decay, both morally and physically, is inevitable because of man’s freely chosen disobedience. Actually, God has embraced the world even more because of its death. Even if man’s death and blindness causes him to miss God’s work (his Spirit) in creation. The Scripture says of Jesus, “He is before all things, and in him all things hold together” (Col. 1:17). Later on the author of Hebrews writes: “The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word” (Heb. 1:3).
If the sun, moon and stars need to be upheld to bring light to the world, we also need to be upheld to be the “light of the world.” There is a beautiful picture in the book of Revelation that describes Jesus walking among seven golden lampstands, which are symbolic of the church. Immediately as we read and imagine this vision our minds should connect Jesus to the priests in the Old Testament. These priests cared for the lampstand and were charged to always keep the light burning. Yet Jesus is no ordinary priest; he is the “Great High Priest.” And as the “Great High Priest” he is the faithful Son in God’s House. The churches addressed in Revelation may be losing their fire, but Jesus is faithful to step down among them and rekindle the “first love” they have forsaken. The Lord has not left the church to herself; he is the devoted husband who is continually cultivating his bride.
Jesus lays down his life, even while in heaven, to intercede for her. His passion is that his bride would be radiant, a shining beauty of glory for the world to see. He will not rest until she is without spot, wrinkle or blemish (Eph. 5:27). Surely he will not let her go when the oil in their lamps are low, but instead he will supply all of her needs according to his riches in glory. The only way he will remove her lampstand is if she stubbornly refuses to respond to his rebuke, only if she continues to run from his love and mercy.
Prayer: Jesus, I invite you to do your work of tending my lampstand. Cause me to burn bright. And not just me, cause your church to be a bright and shining light for the world to see. Uphold and keep us through your powerful Word.