Skip to comments.The Rev. Charles Camlin: a sermon on Rev. 7 for All Saints'
Posted on 11/15/2005 4:23:26 PM PST by sionnsar
I have quickly developed a high regard for the Rev. Charles Camlin of Holy Trinity REC in Fairfax, Virginia as an expositor of Scripture. The sermon he preached for All Saints, an exposition of Rev. 7 titled The Church Militant and the Church Triumphant, is a good example of his work. This portion of the sermon was quite encouraging, I thought:
As we get to the seventh chapter, of which we have read most of tonight, a scroll with seven seals has been brought to Jesus Christ. At this point, He has opened six seals and only the seventh remains. As these seals have been progressively opened, Gods wrath has been poured out upon the earth. Chapter seven opens with what appears to be an interlude. In the midst of tribulation all around them, Christians needed to know that those who were still alive were secure in Christ, while those who had died in Christ were secure in heaven. In this chapter, we have a vision concerning the saints who remain on earth and we have a vision of the saints who are in heaven. We are reminded on this day that the Church of Jesus Christ exists on earth and in heaven. Theologically, these two are known as the Church Militant on earth and the Church Triumphant in heaven. When we proclaim in the Apostles Creed that we believe in the communion of saints, we are claiming that we believe that the Church Militant and the Church Triumphant mystically comprise the Body of Christ. [Of course some would add a third group, the Church Expectant generally thought to be in either purgatory or something like Paradise awaiting the final judgment but that is a different discussion for a different day!].I commend this sermon to you as an excellent meditation on the Church on earth and in heaven. As I said, I am impressed--and thankful--for the sermons that this relatively young man shares with us. The REC is truly blessed with a number of gifted expositors of Sacred Scripture.
There are a number of reasons why this is important but let us think about just one. For Johns readers, this vision would have been a great comfort. Remember, they are suffering tribulation in the world in which they are living. God has promised us eternal life but He has not promised us that this life would be free from tribulation. Jesus reminded His followers, in this world ye shall have tribulation; but be of good cheer, for I have overcome the world.
But in spite of the difficulties that they are experiencing, St. John is given this revelation for them. The vision shows that those whom they love, those who have already died in Christ, are already in the Lords presence. This would have given them strength and courage to remain true to Christ as well in the face of persecution. The same is true for us. There may be times when we wonder if it is worth it. Life can be quite difficultespecially when you are seeking to live a life of obedience to Christ when you are frequently going against the grain of this world. Let us catch a glimpse of Johns vision. Let us see those whom we love and admire around the throne of God. And let us be encouraged to follow their good examples of remaining true to Christ to the end so that we too might share in the blessed state.
A very nice reflection, thank you for posting this.
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