REVELATION 5: THE EXALTEDNESS OF CHRIST

From Revelation 4, discussed last week, where we are given a glimpse of the spiritual core of all reality, we are taken to Revelation 5 where John is given an understanding of reality as it pertains to our human world. Originating from God as much as everything else has originated from Him, we are nevertheless unique in the sense that we are given free wills as we live our lives in a finite realm. Having misused our free wills we find ourselves in a quandary- the need for salvation because we have strayed away from the model of the spiritual core that is the essence of all reality. Without alignment with the model of worship, man cannot and does not want to worship God and hence is excluded from the presence of God and also the revelation of God.

1 Then I saw in the right hand of him who sat on the throne a scroll with writing on both sides and sealed with seven seals. 2 And I saw a mighty angel proclaiming in a loud voice, “Who is worthy to break the seals and open the scroll?” 3 But no one in heaven or on earth or under the earth could open the scroll or even look inside it. 4 I wept and wept because no one was found who was worthy to open the scroll or look inside.

Why was no one found worthy enough to even look inside? Because, outside of Christ, no man on earth has ever lived a perfect life, making him qualified to share proximity with the holy God. And because, outside of Christ, no one from heaven came down to earth as a man and went through life, identifying with everything man goes through, finally giving himself up for mankind on the cross.

 5 Then one of the elders said to me, “Do not weep! See, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has triumphed. He is able to open the scroll and its seven seals.” 6 Then I saw a Lamb, looking as if it had been slain, standing at the center of the throne, encircled by the four living creatures and the elders. The Lamb had seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth. 7 He went and took the scroll from the right hand of him who sat on the throne. 8 And when he had taken it, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb. Each one had a harp and they were holding golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of God’s people. 9 And they sang a new song, saying: “You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased for God persons from every tribe and language and people and nation. 10 You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God, and they will reign on the earth.” 11 Then I looked and heard the voice of many angels, numbering thousands upon thousands, and ten thousand times ten thousand. They encircled the throne and the living creatures and the elders. 12 In a loud voice they were saying: “Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and praise!”

And so John weeps, as he finds no man worthy to open the scrolls held by God on the throne. But then he is shown Jesus Christ who is standing right in the center of the throne, representing the fact that he is no less than God Himself. Yet his human nature is also highlighted as we see reference to the Lion of Judah, the Root of David and the slain Lamb. He is worshipped as God on the throne is worshipped in Revelation 4, yet the song changes to incorporate his redemptive work without diminishing his exaltedness.

13 Then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all that is in them, saying: “To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and honor and glory and power, for ever and ever!” 14 The four living creatures said, “Amen,” and the elders fell down and worshiped.

Those saved by Jesus and restored to the spiritual order of worshipping God shall become a kingdom, reigning on earth. As they serve God, they shall truly own the world. This is true to some extent now and becomes fully evident after the world ends and the reign of Christ described in Revelation begins. Innumerable angels circle the throne and the whole of heaven breaks out in the song exalting Christ and singing of his undisputed power and authority. We serve no ordinary king! And what is more, every creature that exists bows before the Lamb of God. And as we do the same, we rejoice that we are indeed singing the tune that resonates throughout all creation and is in fact the very breath of reality.

 

 

 

 

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