12 … saying with a loud voice, “Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!”
[Remember — You can always click on a link and read a Scripture passage in a separate window.]
What is our second take way from this scene?
II. As the first century believers did, we should see God alone as worthy of having first place in our lives. vs. 12a
We saw in the last post how we should look on this scene in Revelation. Compare II Kings 6:8-20. We can with the eye of faith behold what Elisha’s servant saw with his physical eyes — 16 Elisha said, “Do not be afraid, for those who are with us are more than those who are with them.”
7 Then Elisha prayed and said, “O Lord, please open his eyes that he may see.” So the Lord opened the eyes of the young man, and he saw, and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.
We ought to compare the II Kings 6 passage with Hebrews 2:5-9 as we view the ever-changing scenes around us in this world.
8 At present, we do not yet see everything in subjection to [Christ]. 9 But we see him who for a little while was made lower than the angels, namely Jesus, crowned with glory and honor because of the suffering of death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone.
This Revelation scene reminds me of a story in C. S. Lewis’s Chronicles of Narnia. In The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, Lucy finds a book of Incantations. In it she reads “a spell for the refreshing of the spirit.”
“It went on for three pages and before she had read to the bottom of the page she had forgotten that she was reading at all. She was living in the story as if it were real… .
When she had…come to the end, she said, “That is the loveliest story I’ve ever read or shall read in my whole life… . But here part of the magic of the Book came into play. You couldn’t turn back. The right-hand pages, the ones ahead, could be turned; the left-hand pages could not…”oh dear, it’s all fading away…It was about a cup and a sword and a tree and a green hill… .”
Aslan, the Christ-figure in the book, reassures her He will be telling her the story over and over for years to come.
A great deal of Revelation’s imagery would have refreshed suffering believers in Asia Minor as they heard it read out and taught in their congregations. We have to exercise our minds in study to understand the imagery before it can refresh our flagging spirits today, but it still does its intended work!
There will never be true unity and concord in any created place until Jesus is Lord in every sphere and life.
This is why John hears every created being in heaven speaking with one united voice — singular — of this group. They speak as one voice. It is an acappella praise to the Lamb’s worthiness. At this point the “song” includes all life forms in heaven. They are representative, as we saw earlier.
Everything created is represented by angels around the throne.
the Elders and the throne — This scene includes in symbolic form all life as it forms a ring around the throne (kyklos) outside Living Creatures
Later on in this chapter we will see the scene expand to the entirety of creation.
All that could be attributed to earthly rulers is seen here to be truly attributed to the Lamb.
Worthy to Receive — All of the nouns — power, wealth, wisdom, strength, honor, glory, and praise — are all joined together with one definite article.
According to Alan F. Johnson, “the seven-fold accumulation of these attributes by angel choirs is a Qumran liturgical method for creating the feeling of God’s majesty and glory.” (see Johnson, p. 380, below.)
We must let this vision of what will be fully realized at Christ’s Coming refresh us as we see the sinful world disintegrating around us. We cannot give into despair.
And, we cannot muck rake in our own sins. We must confess them to God and he will forgive us (I John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness ESV).
I like what one saint said, “God buries our sins in depths of the sea. We ought to anchor a ‘no-fishing’ sign there!”
We must not grow weary in well-doing. We must look away from the nasty-now to the glorious-to-be-then. It will refresh us and return us to the work God has given us to do. Viewing the majesty and glory of God will always lift us up from depression!
More on this passage next time.
ESV. (2001). Accessed 29 November 2019 from https://www.biblegateway.com/
Johnson, A F. (2009). Expositor’s Bible Commentary, Volume 13: Revelation. Rev. Ed. (Grand Rapids, MI:
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