Berean Lamp Memory Verse - REVELATION 16:15 - (Mar 15-22)
The Berean Lamp Memory Verse for this week is:
“Behold, I am coming like a thief! Blessed is the one who stays awake, keeping his garments on, that he may not go about naked and be seen exposed!” (Rev. 16:15)
Two mantras that define our culture's wisdom today are that YOU, dear reader, must “Follow your dreams” and “Live your dreams” to fulfill yourself. The inspirational wisdom of human philosophers puts a huge emphasis on the importance of our earthly dreams. Walt Disney said, “All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them.” Transcendentalist philosopher Henry David Thoreau wrote, “Our truest life is when we are in dreams awake.” But the conscious dreams of ambition, aspiration, and desire actually have more in common with our unconscious dreams: “a series of thoughts, images, and sensations occurring in a person’s mind during sleep” - Google Dictionary. A dream is best described as something appearing to us real while we are asleep, but which actually is not real when we are awake. A dream is vanity. What are our earthly ambitions but the unconscious fantasies of the sleeper compared to the real treasures of eternity? Unlike the world, God does not call you to “live your dreams,” but to “stay awake” (Luke 21:36) and “live a godly life in Christ” (2 Tim. 3:12b). God calls us to stay awake and aware of our true surroundings. To be awake is to be conscious— “aware of and responding to one’s surroundings—awake. Having knowledge of something—aware” - Google Dictionary. We are to have “the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord” (2 Peter 1:2b), and we must not only be aware of our surroundings, but we need to be responding to them, witnessing to the knowledge of the coming day of Jesus' return. Jesus told us to be especially awake and watching for His return in the second and third watches of the night - a time when few, if any, people are awake and all are pursuing their dreams in the deepest states of sleep. May the Bride be found watching for her Beloved at these hours when He comes for her and not be found asleep, following the world's dreams of vanity.
May we stay awake at all times, responding to our surroundings as our Bridegroom did. Jesus did not come into the world for His interests, but to serve and die for our sake - His life was for that purpose, and He was fully AWAKE to it. May we also not chase after our dreams for this life, but instead consciously follow our Beloved - awake and waiting for His return for us. Even so, Amen.
Other verses to consider:
“Besides this you know the time, that the hour has come for you to wake from sleep. For salvation is nearer to us now than when we first believed” (Romans 13:11).
“Wake up from your drunken stupor, as is right, and do not go on sinning. For some have no knowledge of God. I say this to your shame” (1 Corinthians 15:34).
“Wake up, and strengthen what remains and is about to die, for I have not found your works complete in the sight of my God. Remember, then, what you received and heard. Keep it, and repent. If you will not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come against you” (Revelation 3:2-3).
“For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul?” (Mark 8:36)
“Turn away my eyes from looking at vanity, And revive me in Your ways” (Psalm 119:37).
“I have seen all the works which have been done under the sun, and behold, all is vanity and striving after wind” (Ecclesiastes 1:14).
“Thus I considered all my activities which my hands had done and the labor which I had exerted, and behold all was vanity and striving after wind and there was no profit under the sun” (Ecclesiastes 2:11).
“For speaking out arrogant words of vanity they entice by fleshly desires, by sensuality, those who barely escape from the ones who live in error, promising them freedom while they themselves are slaves of corruption; for by what a man is overcome, by this he is enslaved” (2 Peter 2:18-19).
“For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing to be wise, they became fools” (Romans 1:21-22).
“For the wisdom of this world is foolishness before God. For it is written, ‘He is the one who catches the wise in their craftiness’; and again, ‘The Lord knows the reasonings of the wise, that they are useless’” (1 Corinthians 3:19-20).
“Blessed are those servants whom the master finds awake when he comes. Truly, I say to you, he will dress himself for service and have them recline at table, and he will come and serve them. If he comes in the second watch, or in the third, and finds them awake, blessed are those servants!” (Luke 12:37-38).
“While people are saying, ‘There is peace and security,’ then sudden destruction will come upon them as labor pains come upon a pregnant woman, and they will not escape. But you are not in darkness, brothers, for that day to surprise you like a thief. For you are all children of light, children of the day. We are not of the night or of the darkness. So then let us not sleep, as others do, but let us keep awake and be sober. For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk, are drunk at night” (1 Thessalonians 5:3-7).
“But stay awake at all times, praying that you may have strength to escape all these things that are going to take place, and to stand before the Son of Man” (Luke 21:36).
“But concerning that day or that hour, no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. Be on guard, keep awake. For you do not know when the time will come. It is like a man going on a journey, when he leaves home and puts his servants in charge, each with his work, and commands the doorkeeper to stay awake. Therefore stay awake—for you do not know when the master of the house will come, in the evening, or at midnight, or when the rooster crows, or in the morning— lest he come suddenly and find you asleep. And what I say to you I say to all: Stay awake” (Mark 13:32-37).
“But when anything is exposed by the light, it becomes visible, for anything that becomes visible is light. Therefore it says, ‘Awake, O sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.’ Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil” (Ephesians 5:12-15).
“Behold, I am coming like a thief! Blessed is the one who stays awake, keeping his garments on, that he may not go about naked and be seen exposed!” (Revelation 16:15).
“Be on the alert, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong. Let all that you do be done in love” (1 Corinthians 16:13-14).