Posts Tagged ‘rapture’

I Saw Before Me a Huge Crowd !…

May 27, 2017

” I saw before me a huge crowd which no one could ocunt from every nation and race, people and tongue. They stood before the throne and the Lamb , dressed in long white robes and holding palm branches in their hands. They cried out in a loud voice, ” Salvation is from our God, who is seated on the throne , and from the Lamb !” All the angels who were standing around the throne and the elders and the four living creaturesfell down before the throne to worship God. They said ” Amen, ! priase and glory , wisdom and thanksgiving and honor, Power and might to our God forever and ever Amen !”. ( Revelation 7:9-12)

When I began to look at this passage, I thought to myself. What could one possibly say, or think, or ponder more than what is already written here.

Many in the theological circles I have traveled in, either know little about the book of revelation or sometimes I get the feeling that it is for the clergy, and those in pastoral, and spiritual care circles, much the same feeling one gets as a guitar player, when someone comes up and asks you to play
” Freebird”… now. don’t go get all defensive if your one of those who just can not seem to hear the song enough, and feel like it is your personal anthem.

What I mean is that there are certain questions one gets asked oh, about a trillion times and you really long for something with a little more substance or something different. What Circle of Hell am I in ? Which room in the Interior Castle am I in ? What do you think about that labyrinth thingy ?

Now, don’t get my wrong. I want to encourage everyone in their quest for knowledge, truth, ,and the understanding in their relationship with Christ. It is important, to seek these things, so that you understand what you believe and why. In today’s world we have far to few “educated” Christians, meaning disciples who know what they believe, and why they believe it, and the history and meaning behind that faith.

But I digress..

So what is it about this passage that speaks to us ? What is it about it that sticks out to you ? Most assuredly, and hopefully it will be a little different for you. Why ? Because the scripture speak to us differently, at different times, for different reasons, in order to teach us different things.

While reading the passage , we are taken into the scene. The sheer vastness of the Throne Room, the huge hall, and all of the faithful there praising God in all His spendor. The part however that caught my attention was the mention of the four creatures.. and it really did not seem to make sense to me.

In my search there are those who have described these four creatures in various ways. have connected the creatures to the four creatures from Ezikiel, but those creatures came in a much different scene. In fact there are a few places throughout scripture in the Old Testament where there are 4 creatures mentioned.

The important thing to note is that Revelation like several other books are full of imagery, and symbolism. Its just that Revelation is chocked full of the stuff. I mean literally this is wall to wall imagery. The thing is you have to understand that these revelations are mystical and dream-like and are meant to a certain degree, to speak to the audience it was meant for… the early church.

The other thing is that translations are at work here. The word “creatures” are also used to refer to various options, including angels. The reference changes according to the translator apperantly.
So who were these 4 creatures ? – they are by cross reference to the Old Testament in Daniel and Ezekiel as a Man, Eagle, Lion, and Ox. Great ?! you say ? Now what.. these 4 creatures are actually symbols of the Evangelists of the Synoptic Gospels. Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.
These are born out by such great theologians as Iraneas , St Auguine of Hippo and St. Jerome.

There were the elders.. the communion of Saints.. another great voice and our intercessors in Heaven.
This should give us hope, and confidence not only in our prayer life, but in our intercession. For others, and in turn through the saints and the Blessed Virgin Mary. It should also give us great confidence in the intercessory prayers of others on our behalf.

What a glorious scene for us, for our future. What fire should fill our hearts and souls as we contemplate the glories of Heaven and of our Heavenly Father.

May God give you the gift of His peace !

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Of Fire and Of Water…

August 31, 2009

Todays readings are rather interesting.  We read about the Rapture and the Apocalypse.   The end of times and last of days.  Heavy stuff ?    In my life time the end of the world has been predicted probably 5 or 6 times.     I remember mentioning it to my mother and her saying ” I was not worried about how I got here, and I am not worried about how I leave”.     Remeber this parents !!    Children may not DO everything we tell them, but they NEVER forget that one time you slip, or the things you say.     ( OK maybe not everything.. but it does stick ! )

I have thought a bit about the possibilities of the ” Rapture”.   This should give consolation to us.  Indeed we consider that those who sleep in Christ will awaken and rise into the clouds.  Those who are still alive( and faithful) would be taken up with them BEFORE the destruction of the world.   We must remember  that Peter always ran about preaching the Gospel and telling people to repent for the end of days was near.   Some 21 centuries later, we are still worrying about the end of the world as we know it.

In our day to day lives we are faced with issues and decisions that need to be made, that may effect our lives moving forward.  We tend to worry and “strut our hour upon the stage…. (and mostly) signifying nothing” but more worry and fret.   It is possible that each decision we make is a possible rapture or a possible apocalypse waiting to occur.

We also read that we ” thirst for the Lord like a deer for running water”.    In our times of worry, and distress we turn to the Lord for answers, for “the miracle” , for help, and consolation.    I find it ironic that on the one hand we have the fire and brimstone of the apocalypse, and on the other side there is water, cooling, and thirst quenching.    Through out our  life there is water.   The waters of birth that break, Waters of Baptism, the water we bathe in, the Holy waters in the fonts, the water that makes up most of our chemistry, the water we drink, the waters that bless us near daily.

In the bible it was the water that was parted to save the Isrealites, and the same water that washed the Pharohs Soldiers into the ocean to  save the Isrealites.   Even today we need water to live, but it is also water that can take our lives if we are not vigilant.

To a greater extend our view of the end times is much the same.  A friend of mine used to always say, ” worry is sin paid twice”.  God is in control.  If you give God control of your life, and allow him to work in your life, then you need not have things to worry about.    ” Pray, Hope, and Don’t Worry”  The mantra of Padre Pio applies for all of us.  Yesterday is done,  There is nothing you can do to change it.  Tomorrow, is still tomorrow and you cant change it, and you dont know for certain that you will be there to worry about it.  Therefore all you have is right now.  Live THIS moment.  Give THIS moment to God, Do what you can to glorify God in THIS moment, for this moment is a present.