Revelation #12 Revelation 4: 1- 11 The End Times Calls For Worship
Revelation #12 Revelation 4: 1- 11 The End Times Calls For
messages to the churches are as applicable to us today as they were when the
original congregations read them.
Ephesus is infected with a spirit of judgment. Smyrna is in danger of
giving in. Pergamum is contaminated with a spirit of compromise. Thyatira
tolerates false teachers. Sardis looks alive but it’s a false front, they’re
dealing with hypocrisy. Philadelphia is doing well but the folks need to stay
strong in the face of what is coming. The congregation at Laodicea is a
do-nothing church, its problem is indifference. Jesus identifies the need in
each congregation and invites them to consider the situation they find
themselves in and make the necessary changes to live in fidelity to Christ.
same invitation is extended to us today.
If you find that you are judgmental, in danger of giving up, have
compromised your faith to fit in, got caught up following false teachers,
recognized hypocrisy in your life, need to stay strong dealing with the
struggles of life, or worst of all, you are living do-nothing discipleship,
Jesus says let’s come to the table and figure out what to do before its too
late to do anything. Coming to the table
is what the 7th habit of a disciple is all about, contemplation. In contemplation, you deal with the deep
things of the heart that need to be realigned with God’s will and God’s way.
Everyone who overcomes is rewarded. Everyone who endures, staying faithful, is
rewarded. I want to see you rewarded. If
you need help, please let me know, coaching is available.
message to Philadelphia Jesus spoke of the reward of being acknowledged in the
very throne room of God; personally recognized before God and his holy angels,
a seat at the table. As we begin chapter
4, we are leaving Earth and entering that throne room. What proceeds is for all the churches
addressed by Jesus, and consequently for you and me.
4 is an awe-inspiring chapter. Shock and awe more than you can comprehend. Your
jaw drops, the majesty, the radiance, and the brilliance make your eyes squint,
your heart races, and you forget to breathe. There is a certain terror involved, one that
instead of repelling you draws you in, but it is terror, nonetheless. “Do not be afraid. Stand up and come in.” You’re speechless, words fail you. You fall on
your knees with hands lifted high, you go flat on your face in adoration, and you
shout at the top of your lungs “Glory.” Lightening flashes, and sounds of bone-rattling
thunder shake the ground you are standing on, indescribable, uncontainable,
untamable, and unimaginable. John
looked, and, oh!—a door open into Heaven. The trumpet-voice, the first voice in
my vision, called out, "Ascend and enter. I'll show you what happens
2 I was
caught up at once in deep worship and, oh!—a Throne set in Heaven with One
Seated on the Throne, suffused in gem hues of amber and flame with a nimbus of
emerald. Twenty-four thrones circled the Throne, with Twenty-four Elders
seated, white-robed, gold-crowned.
Lightning flash and thunder crash pulsed from the Throne. Seven
fire-blazing torches fronted the Throne (these are the Sevenfold Spirit of
God). Before the Throne it was like a clear crystal sea.
around the Throne were Four Animals, all eyes. Eyes to look ahead, eyes to look
behind. The first Animal like a lion, the second like an ox, the third with a
human face, the fourth like an eagle in flight. The Four Animals were winged,
each with six wings. They were all eyes, seeing around and within. And they
chanted night and day, never taking a break:
our Master, Sovereign-Strong,
Was, The Is, The Coming.
time the Animals gave glory and honor and thanks to the One Seated on the
Throne—the age-after-age Living One—the Twenty-four Elders would fall prostrate
before the One Seated on the Throne. They worshiped the age-after-age Living
One. They threw their crowns at the foot of the Throne, chanting,
Worthy, O Master! Yes, our God! Take the glory! the honor! the power!
created it all; It was created because
you wanted it.
to the throne room of the living God.
trumpet voice is Jesus inviting John to see what is coming. John is in deep
worship, another vision, and worship is exactly what he is going to see.
blazing light in the middle is a throne and upon that throne sits someone John
cannot describe, too brilliant are the reds and greens and oranges and whites
emanating from the one seated. There is
a nimbus of emerald, a halo, or a rainbow, John can’t really tell but there is
an emerald green light surrounding the throne.
heavenly council is also seated upon thrones. They are the administrators of
God’s will. Seated means they have the authority to carry out the commands of
God, they are white robed which represents the righteousness of God. White
clothing represents purity, holiness, and spiritual perfection. Only those God declares to be worthy wear
white, only those in white can stand in the presence of God. Their heads are
adorned with golden crowns signifying power and majesty, they have status as
kings and priests, authority to carry out God’s designs for creation. We’ve
been given a glimpse, enough information to speculate that these elders are the
divine council of Psalm 82:1, the heavenly counsel of Job 1:6-12, and the host
of heaven of 1 Kings 22:19-23.
seven blazing lamps represent the Holy Spirit, the original language can be
translated as the sevenfold spirit. The
Holy Spirit standing before the throne signifies God’s omnipresence and
all-encompassing power. The Spirit is
not confined to a specific location but permeates all of creation, by the
Spirit, God is everywhere. The sevenfold spirit standing before the throne is
imagery that conveys a sense of a deep connection and fellowship, before the
throne the Spirit is not an attendant as the elders, but rather a beloved
companion and confidant.
same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to
pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. And
he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit
intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God.
In our Trinitarian
understanding of Father, Son, and Spirit, your prayers have no
intermediary. When you pray you
poetically stand before God.
the throne and Sevenfold Spirit is what looks like a sea of glass, crystal
clear. John again is at a loss for words. What looks like a sea is the
foundation upon which the throne resides.
It suggests that God’s rule and authority are grounded in purity and
clarity. That there are no waves on this
sea speaks of the unyielding, unshakable foundation of God’s reign. We may also
speculate that the sea’s translucency, being clear as crystal represents God’s
openness and accessibility to those who seek His presence. From Judaism, we
might see a prophetic word in the sea like glass in that Ezekiel foretells that
the earthly sea is transformed as a sign of peace and harmony in the Messianic
era (Ezekiel 47:8-12).
around the throne are four living creatures.
We can draw a parallel with Ezkiel's visions of the angels called
cherubim. The Cherubim serve as
guardians. It is a cherubim that blocks
the way to the Tree of Life (Genesis 3:24).
Two cherubim decorated the ark of the covenant (Exodus 25:18-22). In a
book not in your bible called Enoch, the cherubim are the guardians of the
throne of God (Enoch 71:7). Here they are in the throne room of God. They move
about the expanse of the throne room calling out:
Holy, Holy is the Lord god Almighty, who
was, and is and is to come.”
a chorus of praise (Exodus 25:18-20, 37: 7-9, Pslam 80:1, Isaiah 6). Later in the book the title Who Was, and Is
and Is to Come changes, marking the
of the kingdom, we will read it, the one who was and is, has arrived. He is with us physically.
song goes on day and night, the recitation is reminiscent of morning and
evening prayer. Psalm 113:3 “From the rising of the sun to the going down of
the same the name of the Lord shall be praised.” As
the four living creatures give glory, honor, and thanks, the elders join in,
leaving their seats and falling before the throne, laying their crowns before
the throne; a sign of complete submission, a sign of being fully surrendered. We can speculate that these elders have been
around a long time, created sometime near the beginning, and they have seen,
they know, they have been a part of God’s unfolding plan and they proclaim that
God is worthy of worship because they know:
O Master! Yes, our God! Take the glory! the honor! the power! You created it
all; It was created because you wanted it (Rev 4:11 (MSG).
is something hidden here. “Worthy, O
Master! Yes, our God!” In the original language [kurios kai theois ]
this praise to God is a title that can be translated as Lord and God. What is hidden is that this was the official
title of the Roman Emperor Domitian. To call the one on the throne, Lord and
God was a triumphant confession of who all loyalty was to be given.
on earth look bad. Oppression,
persecution, martyrdom for the redeemed on earth. Things on Earth are heading from bad to
worse. But here we see that God is not
unaware. From the throne room, God
reigns. This is where it all
happens. The creation comes into being
because God wanted it. Humanity was created
in the image of God because it was His good pleasure to make us so. It is here that God’s plans for redeeming His
creation are generated.
this scene, we know that God is in charge.
We know that God is worshipped. It is a call to believers. Trust that God is in charge. Even though the world seems like nothing but
chaos, God is on the throne and His will is going to be done, on earth as it is
in heaven. Things are rough, times
intense, maybe even catastrophic but we have hope because our God reigns. From
this scene, we know believers are to join in this unending praise and worship.
From grateful hearts, we give God His due.
times coming will be bad, but the victory is secure. Don’t give up, don’t
forsake the faith, do His will to the end.
Consider what awaits:
right to eat of the tree of life in the paradise of God (Revelation 2:7).
Redemption from the second death, spiritual death (Revelation 2:11).
new name that allows total access (Revelation 2:17).
Authority to rule with Christ (Revelation 2:26-27).
will wear robes of white and your name will never be blotted from the book of
life (Revelation 3:5).
will be made a pillar with the marks that God possesses you, citizenship is the
New Jerusalem, all coming with a more intimate knowledge of Jesus (Revelation
will be given a place at Jesus’ table (Revelation 3:21).
has seen, no ear has heard, no heart has imagined, what God has prepared for
those who love Him.