Revelation Day 14 - No Contest

DAY 14
No Contest
Psalm 16:5-11 

I got my first job when I was 16. I was a stockman for one of our local grocery stores. More importantly, I worked for my dad who managed the store. On school days, the bell rang at 3pm, I ran home to change and grab a bite, then clocked in at 4pm. Dad was about done for the day. His management style was “empower and trust.” He gave all us closers a list of what needed done before clocking out, then trusted us to get it done. I measure most leaders by that standard to this day. It’s usually no contest.

John’s vision of heaven becomes his measurement standard. Everything else in life, no matter how attractive, will now be compared to what he’s seen in God’s throne room. But this is the standard of what’s good, true, and beautiful. Nothing will ever compare! Nothing can compromise his commitment. No contest!

That’s the point. The second thing a meeting with God like this does is protects you from compromise. Soon John will introduce us to the villains: Satan, Babylon, and the Beasts. The villians are expert in the art of seduction. Satan is the spiritual power behind it all, Babylon is anti-God culture personified in systems like the Roman Empire, and the Beasts are anti-God world leaders. This unholy trinity competes with God for our allegiance. The New Testament scholar, Michael Gorman, says that their "idolatrous culture of death… [seduces] nations and individuals…”

Seduction is the best way to talk about this fight for our love. Everything world systems dangle in front of us to take center stage in our lives boils down to Genesis 3 where the Serpent says to Eve, “I know God said not to eat this fruit, but you don’t know what you’re missing!” Revelation 4 and 5 tell us that the best way to stay loyal to Jesus is to experience him. We need to “taste and see that the LORD is good!” We need our hearts convinced that God is alluring, attractive, magnetic.

Psalm 16 delights in God. Delights! When the psalmist says, “You will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand,” he’s saying, “God, there’s no contest! You’re all I want!” Spend enough time in God’s presence that you can say the same.

What is something you’ve experienced as so amazing that nothing could ever compare? It could be a food, a musician, etc.

My choice is you, God, first and only. You’re all I want. The best of everything is with you. Keep me close. Make it no contest. Amen.
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