For the Time is at Hand
Prophecy is speaking the words of God by the unction of the Holy Spirit. God is our source of revelation and all revelation therefore comes directly from the Holy Spirit.
Jesus emphatically told his disciples that they are to wait for the Promise of the Father, for on that day “you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” (Acts 1:8) This “dunamis” power manifested by the distribution of tongues, with the sign through speech is the beginning of what I’ll call the “witness program”. For they ‘began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.’ (Acts 2:4)
You see, God’s plan has always been for His people to be enrolled in this witness program – to be His witnesses and go to the nations. When we are equipped in this power in the Holy Spirit with speech, we will testify of the Truth which we have experienced and heard.
The prophet Isaiah writes, ‘“You are my witnesses,” declares the Lord, “and my servant whom I have chosen, that you may know and believe me and understand that I am He. Before me no god was formed, nor shall there be any after me. I, I am the Lord, and besides me there is no saviour. I declared and saved and proclaimed, when there was no strange god among you; and you are my witnesses,” declares the Lord, “and I am God.”’ (Isaiah 43:10-12)
When we proclaim the Good News, we testify and declare the works of God. Indeed, good deeds never did save us, but we have been justified by faith, having understanding in the scriptures that these good works which are waiting up will complete us. And when men see our good works through God’s saving grace, they will be drawn and they will glorify God whom we serve!
In a personal note from the Apostle Paul to Timothy, he wrote this, “from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.” (2 Timothy 3:15-17)
To be complete and thoroughly equipped for every good work is the place we want to find ourselves, and the Holy Scriptures not only testify of Jesus, it also glorifies the Father.
In the midst of Revelation 19, John records this encounter, “Then he said to me, “Write: ‘Blessed are those who are called to the marriage supper of the Lamb!’ ” “and, John being overwhelmed by what he had received falls at the feet of the angel and began worshipping him. Then the angel said, “See that you do not do that!” because we give honour to the giver of the message, Jesus alone, “Worship God! For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.”
At this marriage supper of the Lamb, we see the Bride of Christ clothed in fine linen, clean and bright which represents the righteous acts of the saints. This bridal garment speaks of and is connected to the testimony of Jesus which is the spirit of prophecy.
You see, true prophecy inspired by the Holy Spirit directs us to a transformed life by the renewing of our minds. By this same Spirit of grace which we have been saved and redeemed, we are to be conformed to the life of Jesus. All teachings must ultimately point to Him alone, Jesus, our sure foundation and nothing else.
Just as there are false prophecies whose focus is directed away from the knowledge of Christ, a true word testifies of Jesus, directing us to uphold the standards that Jesus taught and lived.
By the mercies of God and through this gift of salvation, we have received supernatural enablement to hear God’s voice by the Spirit of God. This good measure of grace has been given so that we are not only hearers, but we have been enabled to deliver the message as well. This is the spirit of prophecy.
Jesus clearly distinguishes between John and Jezebel, between the true spirit of prophecy and the spirit of the antichrist. Clearly, we are to reject compromise with the world, for the hope of the believer is the consummation and union with Christ our Lord. Our message continues to be – God alone is to be worshiped.
Revelation 21:9 continues to tell of what John saw and heard, “Then one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls filled with the seven last plagues came to me and talked with me, saying, “Come, I will show you the bride, the Lamb’s wife.”
Now the bride reveals the fullness of God, having been transformed into the likeness of the image of the Son of God. When John witnessed this, he probably saw the glory restored to the time before the fall. Again, he could not withhold himself, and he ‘fell down to worship before the feet of the angel’.
The Bride, she has made herself ready for her Bridegroom who is called Faithful and True. Betrothed to Christ and set apart for Him, we now speak only of these things, telling the nations what we have experienced. For Jesus is the standard by which all is measured and Jesus is calling us to live according to the Word made flesh.
Will we remain faithful to Him unto death?
In Revelation 10, John was told to “seal up the things which the seven thunders uttered, and do not write them”, while in Revelation 22 he was told not to seal the words of the prophecy of this book, ‘for the time is at hand.’ Why is this?
John the Baptist said, “A man can receive nothing unless it has been given to him from heaven…He who has the bride is the bridegroom; but the friend of the bridegroom, who stands and hears him, rejoices greatly because of the bridegroom’s voice. Therefore, this joy of mine is fulfilled. He must increase, but I must decrease.” (John 3:27-30)
Indeed, there are still revelations to be received and promises yet to be fulfilled, for history has to be told through prophecies. Are we prepared and ready to receive and be received?
It has been my immense joy and honour to walk with many of you in the Cornerstone Global Network, to see first-hand His good works done in and through you. Together, let us agree to faithfully teach in harmony with Jesus, just as the Son faithfully confessed His allegiance to His Father.
May the testimony of Jesus which is the spirit of prophecy, grant us the abounding riches of His grace to live like Jesus. To live in obedience to His commands. May we also point many to Jesus as Redeemer, Lord and King, and together with the voice of a great multitude in heaven, let’s say, “Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready.” (Revelation 19:7) Alleluia! Alleluia!
Ps. Daphne Yang
Deputy Senior Pastor
Cornerstone Community Church
Cornerstone Global Network