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Revelation 5

REVELATION 5

5 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.  2And I saw a mighty angel proclaiming in a loud voice, “Who is worthy to break the seals and open the scroll?”  3But no one in heaven or on earth or under the earth could open the scroll or even look inside it.  4I wept and wept because no one was found who was worthy to open the scroll or look inside.  5Then 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.”

6Then I saw a Lamb, looking as if it had been slain, standing in the center of the throne, encircled by the four living creatures and the elders. He had seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven spirits [Or the sevenfold Spirit] of God sent out into all the earth.  7He came and took the scroll from the right hand of him who sat on the throne.  8And 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 the saints.  9And they sang a new song:

“You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased men for God from every tribe and language and people and nation.  10You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God, and they will reign on the earth.”

11Then 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.  12In a loud voice they sang:

“Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and praise!”

13Then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all that is in them, singing:

“To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and honor and glory and power, for ever and ever!”

14The four living creatures said, “Amen,” and the elders fell down and worshipped.

INTRODUCTION

God is seated on His throne. The scroll of future history is sealed.  An angel was asking who was worthy to reveal the future.  No living creature in heaven or on earth was worthy. No magician, no astrologer, no sorcerer, no necromancer, no magi, no witch, no observer of times, no enchanter, no consulter with familiar spirits was able to give an accurate forecast of the future. John wept until one of the twenty four elders (heavens ruling class) told him that the “slain lamb”–Jesus–would take the scroll from the hand of God and reveal the future. Suddenly all heaven was seen in a praise-a-thon. A chorus of praise was coming from a hundred million saying that the “Lamb” was worthy to receive praise, riches, wisdom, strength, honor glory and blessing. So great was this celebration that even earth and sea joined in the celebration. All of heaven bowed in reverence to the Root of David.

EXPOSITION

      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.

This scroll contains the secrets of God about the future. It was sealed so that each seal had to be broken to reveal its content.

      2    And I saw a mighty angel proclaiming in a loud voice, “Who is worthy to break the seals and open the scroll?”

To which of the angels did God ever say, “Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet” [Psalm 110:1] Are not all angels ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation?  Heb. 1:13,14

This powerful servant, asks the question Who is worthy to open the book, and to loose the seals thereof?

      3    But no one in heaven or on earth or under the earth could open the scroll or even look inside it.

No living person in heaven or earth is able to reveal the future.

      4-5 I wept and wept because no one was found who was worthy to open the scroll or look inside. 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.”

Jesus Christ is a descendant of David and David a Descendant of the Tribe of Judea. Jesus was the triumphant one he had conquered Death, Hell, and the grave. He is able to make known the future.

      6    Then I saw a Lamb, looking as if it had been slain, standing in the center of the throne, encircled by the four living creatures and the elders. He had seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven spirits [Or the sevenfold Spirit] of God sent out into all the earth.

Lamb signifies innocence and was used for sacrifice.

Tell the whole community of Israel that on the tenth day of this month each man is to take a lamb for his family, one for each household.   Ex. 12:3

Seven Horns The all complete sign number for authority. Seven Eyes. The all complete sign number for perfect wisdom.

      7    He came and took the scroll from the right hand of him who sat on the throne.

Jesus was able to receive the book from the everlasting one.

      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 the saints.

Harps are symbols of the Christians praise and Odors (incense) is a symbol of prayers. Again heavenly creatures are seen worshipping God.

      9    And they sang a new song: “You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased men for God from every tribe and language and people and nation.

A new song. A song of redemption. Thou art worthy to take the book. Jesus was worthy because of Calvary . For thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation. We are new creatures in Christ:

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!  2 Cor 5:17

In reply Jesus declared, “I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again. “How can a man be born when he is old?” Nicodemus asked. “Surely he cannot enter a second time into his mother’s womb to be born!” Jesus answered, “I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit.”  John 3:3-5

For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.  Eph. 2:10

The Christian can now sing:

“I’m redeemed by love divine,

Glory Glory Christ is mine, Christ is mine,

All to Him I now resign,

I have been redeemed”

      10  You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God, and they will reign on the earth.”

God has made us to be a kingdom (ASV).  We are priests.  Not after the order of Aaron but after the order of Melchisedec. We are therefore to offer our sacrifice of praise to God continually.

Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise–the fruit of lips that confess his name.   Heb 13:15.

They will reign on the earth.  We reign in the gospel age.

      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.

All heaven and earth ascribing praise to God.  It was an innumerable throng.

      12-14         In a loud voice they sang: “Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and praise!” Then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all that is in them, singing: “To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and honor and glory and power, for ever and ever!” The four living creatures said, “Amen,” and the elders fell down and worshipped.

Worthy is the Lamb. All this was to strengthen and encourage the church who was about to be subjected to severe persecutions revealed in opening the seven seals.

This simply means that John saw a heavenly vision of the triune God upon his throne surrounded with the ruling class of heaven praising Him from Whom all blessings flow.

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