By Pastor Jason Swedeen
Revelation 22:12-14 says, "And behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to give to every one according to his work. I am the Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End, the First and Last. Blessed are those who do His commandments, that they may have the right to the tree of life, and may enter through the gates into the city." Just how quick is "quickly"? Unfortunately, I don’t have the answer and no one else knows either except God the Father. What I do know is that we are influenced greatly by a society of impatience. Everything is ‘fast this’ and ‘fast that’. We want things now, so much that we are willing to be burdened with debt and a lack of freedom. Jesus said, "I am coming quickly!" That word ‘coming’ is signifying that His coming quickly is already in process. If we are truly watching what God is doing, we will see that things are moving quickly. It’s similar to watching an oncoming car. Far away, it appears to be moving very slowly, but the closer it gets to you, the faster you perceive it to be moving until it zooms by you and is gone. All along it was moving at the same speed. The main difference with Jesus coming quickly is that the closer His coming gets, there is literally a continual acceleration going on. If we are watching, not only will we perceive things to be moving quicker, but things will actually be moving faster and faster. You live in an awesome time in history because God is moving in power more and more around the entire world at an accelerated rate. One of the reasons that so many people are not seeing what Jesus is doing is because they have ‘checked out’ with boredom because they don’t see the finish line, or the purpose, and things don’t happen the way, or in the time, that they think it should be.
We are in a race of life. There is a beginning and an end and we need to fix our eyes, our life pursuit, on Jesus, who is the ‘Beginning and the End’. Matt 24:13 says, "But he who endures to the end shall be saved." You’ll never get to the end, the finish line, the reward of life in Jesus, if you give up something along the track that you must run on. But that is what a lot of people are doing. They are giving up because they don’t see, with their natural eyes, the finish line getting any closer. That finish line doesn’t keep moving out of sight, but every step you run is getting you closer to it.
He is coming with His rewards to give to everyone according to their work. The rewards to those who are spectators and those who have given up and checked out are not life-giving, but the rewards to those who endure the race to the end are life-giving, total salvation. "Blessed are those who do His commandments, that they may have the right to the tree of life, and may enter through the gates into the city." Enduring to the end is to live for God, walking out His commandments so that being blessed, we have the right to the tree of life when we have finished the race and can enter into the promised possession of God’s people. The good news is that we don’t have to run the race alone. In fact, we can’t run it alone. It is only through Jesus, fixing our heart on Him, that He gives us the strength and wisdom to be able to finish. He’s not even asking you to be the first one there. He just wants you to finish.
If you’ve ‘checked out’ for one reason or another because things didn’t seem to be happening the way you thought, remember (Isaiah 55:9) " ... His ways and thoughts are higher than yours ..." Choose to get back in while there is still time before Jesus’ ‘coming quickly; zooms by you and leaves you behind. Again, " ... he who endures to the end shall be saved." Whoever you are, wherever you’ve been, whatever you’ve done or said, Jesus is "The Way, The Truth and The Life." Do not lose heart over what you may see or not see. What Jesus said and continues to say will come to pass. Fix your eyes on Him, get in the race and finish it for "Behold, He is coming quickly."