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A shining city upon a hill. That was President Ronald Reagan's vision for the United States of America: the country he loved and served most proudly. President Reagan got his vision of that city from a sermon written by John Winthrop, a Puritan minister and Governor of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. Brother Winthrop got his vision of that city from our Lord.
In John 9:5, Jesus said, "As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world." In His Olivet discourse, He told His disciples, "Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid" (Matt. 5:14,16).
Paul wrote, that like Winthrop and Reagan, "By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went. By faith he sojourned in the land of promise, as in a strange country, dwelling in tabernacles with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise: For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God" (Heb. 11:8-10).
Although Abraham dwelt in the very place that God would later give to his descendants, he sojourned there as a pilgrim. Paul went on to say that Abraham "died in faith, not having received the promises," but saw them afar off, and confessed that he was a stranger and pilgrim on the earth" (Heb. 11:13). History will show that, even with the great speeches of both Governor Winthrop and President Reagan to encourage us to make America the City of which Jesus spoke, they, too, died in faith, not having received the promise.
John Zebedee also saw that city. He said, "I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And there came unto me one of the seven angels ... saying, Come hither, I will shew thee the bride, the Lamb's wife. And he carried me away in the spirit to a great and high mountain, and shewed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God, Having the glory of God..." (Rev. 21:2,9-11).
That City upon a Hill is God's Elect: the Bride of Christ, comprised of the Saints of God of the Early and Latter Church. Paul showed that the Saints of his day had reached it, saying, "For ye are not come unto the mount that might be touched, ... But ye are come unto mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem" (Heb. 12:18-24).
God is even now raising up a people to bring that City to completion before the Day of the Lord come. From among all of Christianity, God is gathering a band of believers that will make up His Church, of Christ's flesh and of His bones; and whatever the brightness of America has been, it will be as darkness compared to Her glory! Praise His holy name!
On June 5, 2004, the 40th President of the United States, Ronald Reagan, died. America lost a great man and a great leader, and an American era came to an end. Three days later, on June 8, with my own eyes I beheld a great sign in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun.
In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. And God said, `Let there be lights in the firmament of heaven to divide the day from the night, and let them be for signs.' When the planet Venus passed between the Earth and the Sun, God was giving of the great heavenly signs to his Children.
The marriage of the Lamb is near, but His Bride must first make Herself ready. God is on the move, and there will be a people rise up to be that Glorious Church.
The choice is yours today. You can be as the Jews in the days of Jesus, and be ignorant of the time of your visitation, or you can heed the signs, and know that your salvation is near.
Seek out those Christians who are as the children of Issachar in 1 Chron. 12:32: men that have understanding of the times, to know what we Christians ought to do to get ready unto the Day of Lord. Let us hearken unto His word, and unto the signs of our times. Let us prepare the way of the Lord and rise up to become that Great City upon a Hill.
David M. McNabb
Editor & Bible Guy