Sometimes I get so full at Thanksgiving dinner I skip dessert. This is unfortunate because the end of the meal with its pumpkin pie and whipped cream is one of the best parts.
The vision John describes at the end of the book of Revelation is definitely one that sparks thanksgiving. He begins by seeing the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, looking as beautiful as a bride on her wedding day (vv. 1–2). Can anything be better than this sight? The answer is yes, because what he hears next gives clarity to what he witnessed. Not only does John note that it was a loud voice but he identifies where the voice was coming from—a throne. This is significant because it indicates that the following words come from a place of triumph and authority.
The voice John hears proclaims: “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them” (v. 3). The last time God dwelt with mankind was the incarnation of Christ when “the Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us” (John 1:14). Before the incarnation, God walked with humanity in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 2). John is witnessing Eden being restored and followers of Christ reunited with the resurrected Christ. This will be the time when all pain, mourning, and death will finally be exterminated (v. 4), and everything will be made new (v. 5).
Just ponder that for a moment. The God of the universe could dwell anywhere, and yet, He has chosen to be with sinners like you and me. As a result of Him allowing us to be in His presence, there will be no more suffering, only love, joy, and peace. You have a lot to be thankful for today, but John’s revelation gives us a lot to be thankful for every day.
We pray this month’s study in Today in the Word will enrich your Thanksgiving celebration. As you gather around the table with family and friends, or even if you prefer to be alone, take time to remember the One who is worthy of all thanksgiving and praise.