Buscamos inspiração na pessoa de Jesus para fazermos a nossa jardinagem do espírito. Ele foi o jardineiro por excelência. Soube cultivar as sementes da fé para produzirem plantas que fornecem abrigo e sustento. Este blog é um esforço para fazer a nossa jardinagem das passagens bíblicas à luz de Jesus que é digno de servir como nosso modelo.
Convidamos os leitores a aprenderem com ELE e fazerem a sua própria jardinagem.
sexta-feira, 10 de julho de 2015
THE TIME IS NEAR
Blessed is the
one who reads aloud
the words of this prophecy,
and blessed are those who hear it
and take to heart what is written in it,
because the time is near.
Revelation 1:3 (read 1:3-8) - NIV
The book of Revelation was written in the second
century to a specific people about a specific reality. To forget these facts
can lead to absurd interpretations. It is an allegorical book, written for
people living outside the law, sentenced to death for following a forbidden
religion. They were constantly subject to arrest, torture and death. They
needed a message to comfort them as they lived in continual danger.
It was written in a language that would be understood
only by those people who were suffering persecution. For us who are out of that
context and living a comfortable Christianity, it is difficult to understand the
Book of Revelation. To us it has become a speculative book of curiosities and
used to find out what will happen at the end of history, who will be the beast,
the antichrist, etc. But for the persecuted at that time, its message is clear:
is a power that is above the visible dominate powers which were intolerant and
apparently invincible. Those powers were doomed to fall. The final
victory is for the persecuted, not the persecutors. Jesus was the supreme
example who was persecuted and killed, but was now in glory. The hope of the
persecuted was that even in dying for their faith, the final victory would be
theirs. Death would be transformed into life and chaos transmuted into
There is a sense in which the phrase, "the time
is near", is a permanent state. The conflict between intolerant
persecutors and persecuted is constant in human history. Each era only changes
the name of the characters. Also in history there has been the role reversal of
the persecuted morphing into persecutors.
Revelation is a book for those of all ages who suffer
persecution. As long as there is persecution the time is always near for the
fall of the powerful. All through history this cycle has repeated itself. It
does not describe a single last event of history. The book recounts cosmic
realities, valid for all times.
First message is that there is a power above the
temporal powers. Temporal means transitory, not permanent. These powers will
end. They are opposed to the flow of history and are doomed to failure. Their
supremacy is only apparent.
Second message is that it is worth keeping faith in
the face of danger. Faith is the ability to look beyond appearances and see the
greater reality. The transitional authorities can kill the body but not the
spirit. The spirit cannot be conquered.
What is the message for us in the safety of our modern
day religiousness? We are not threatened by death for our faith. We are
harmless and do not represent a threat to anyone. Instead, we are being seduced
with a gentle charm that also leads to death. It is the lure of materialism
that promises prosperity. It creates spiritual, social and economic elitism. It
encourages greed, corruption, hatred, prejudice and violence which are producing
the frightening global realities that we are facing today. By being aware of
these realities, we can resist their temptations, remembering that the way of
Jesus is solidarity which can lead to a cross. Living only for one’s self is to
deny the values of faith. Ironically, even without persecution the time is near
for us too.
REVELATION 1:3-8 -NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION (NIV)
Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of this prophecy, and
blessed are those who hear it and take to heart what is written in it, because
the time is near.
GREETINGS AND DOXOLOGY
John, To the seven churches in
the province of Asia:
Grace and peace to you from him who
is, and who was, and who is to come, and from the seven spirits before his
throne, and from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, the firstborn from
the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth.
To him who loves us and has freed
us from our sins by his blood, and has made us to be a kingdom and priests to
serve his God and Father—to him be glory and power for ever and ever! Amen.
“Look, he is coming with the
and “every eye will see him,
even those who pierced him”;
and all peoples on earth “will mourn because of him.”
So shall it be! Amen.
“I am the Alpha and the Omega,”
says the Lord God, “who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty.”