The "Greater Works" and the First Century ChurchHandbook 4: Article 4 - Part 1 - Time and the Works of God: An Introduction

From that time onward began in the first days of the early church.

"The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him to show to His bondservants, the things which must shortly take place; and He sent and communicated it by His angel to John, who bore witness to the word of God and to the testimony of Christ Jesus, to all that he saw."

Revelation 1:1

John Speaking:

"I was on the island of Patmos, exiled there for preaching the word of God, and for telling what I knew about Jesus Christ. It was the Lord's day and I was worshiping when suddenly I heard a loud voice behind me, a voice that sounded like a trumpet blast, saying, 'I am A and Z, the First and Last!' And then I heard Him say, 'Write down everything you see, and send your letter to the seven churches.'

When I turned to see who was speaking, there behind me were seven candlesticks of gold. And standing among them was one who looked like Jesus, who called Himself the son of man, wearing a golden band across His chest. His hair was white as wool or snow, and His eyes penetrated like flames of fire. His feet gleamed like burnished bronze, and His voice thundered like the waves against the shore. He held seven stars in His right hand and a sharp, double-bladed sword in His mouth, and His face shown like the power of the sun in unclouded brilliance.

When I saw Him, I fell at His feet as dead..."

Revelation 1:10-17 (Living Bible)

It was not the "gentle Savior" of an old refrain who presented Himself to John on Patmos.

"Bless me now, O gentle Savior, hear my humble cry;
When on others you are calling, do not pass me by."

It was not a "gentle Savior" John saw standing in the midst of the lamp stands (the churches).

His voice thundered, His eyes penetrated like flames of fire, His feet gleamed like burnished bronze; and in His mouth was a sharp, double-bladed sword.

"And I saw heaven opened; and behold a white horse, and He who sat upon it is called Faithful and True; and in righteousness He judges and wages war. And His eyes are a flame of fire... and from His mouth comes a sharp sword... "

Revelation 19:11, 12, 15

It was not a "gentle Savior" who commended, reprimanded, and spoke of reward or judgment according to their deeds in His message to the churches the 2nd and 3rd chapter of the book of Revelation.

"He who has an ear to hear, let him hear what the Spirit say to the churches."

Revelation 2:11

To Ephesus:

"I know your deeds... I have this against you, that you have left your first love. Remember, therefore, from where you have fallen, and repent and do the first deeds, or else I am coming to you and will move your lamp stand out of its place."

Revelation 2:4, 5

To Thyatira:

"I know your deeds... and your last deeds are greater than the first. But I have this against you, that you tolerate... who teaches and leads My bond-servants astray... know I am He who searches the minds and hearts; and I will give to each one of you according to your deeds...Nevertheless what you have, hold fast until I come... keep My deeds until the end."

Revelation 2:19, 25

To Sardis:

"I know your deeds, that you have a name that you are alive, and you are dead. Wake up, and strengthen the things that remain, which were about to die; for I have not found your deeds completed in the sight of My God. Remember therefore how you have received and heard; and keep it and repent. If therefore you will not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come upon you."

Revelation 3:1-3

To Laodicea:

"I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot, I would that you were cold or hot. So because you are lukewarm, I will vomit you out of My mouth."

Revelation 3:15

To Pergamum:

"...I know where you dwell, where Satan's throne is; and you hold fast My name, and did not deny My faith... But I have a few things against you, because you have some who hold the teaching of Balaam... some who hold the teaching of the Nicolaitains... Repent therefore; or else I am coming to you quickly and I will make war against them with the sword of My mouth."

Revelation 2: 13-16

One of the churches was commended and a door for the work opened for them.

To Philadelphia:

"He who is holy, who is true, who has the key of David, who opens and no one will shut, and who shuts and no one opens, says this: 'I know your deeds. Behold, I have put before you an open door which no one can shut, because you have a little power, and have kept My word, and have not denied My name... '"

And with the praise came a promise.

"Because you have kept the word of My perseverance, I will also keep you from the hour of testing, that hour which is about to come upon the whole earth, to test those who dwell upon the earth."

Revelation 3:8-10

The deeds, the greater works, were not completed in the first century. The deeds, the greater works, are not completed now... The "time" for those of us who believe in Him is still "from that time onward".

"The Lord says to my Lord:
'Sit at My right hand, until I make Thine enemies a footstool for Thy feet.'
The Lord will stretch forth Thy strong scepter from Zion, saying,
'Rule in the midst of Thine enemies.'
Thy people will volunteer freely in the day of Thy power..."

Psalm 110:1-3

And Jesus is still waiting!

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