Is He Worthy: The Worship of Heaven

Today’s selected reading continues in the New Testament prophetic book of the Revelation of Jesus Christ as it was written and recorded by the apostle John. More specifically today’s passage is found in the fourth and fifth chapters of this New Testament book. “After this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter. And immediately I was in the spirit: and, behold, a throne was set in heaven, and one sat on the throne. And he that sat was to look upon like a jasper and a sardine stone: and there was a rainbow round about the throne, in sight like unto an emerald. And round about the throne were four and twenty seats: and upon the seats I saw four and twenty elders sitting, clothed in white raiment; and they had on their heads crowns of gold. And out of the throne proceeded lightnings and thunderings and voices: and there were seven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God. And before the throne there was a sea of glass like unto crystal: and in the midst of the throne, and round abvout the throne, were four beasts full of eyes before and behind. And the first beast was like a lion, and the second beast like a calf, and the third beast had a face as a man, and the fourth beast was like a flying eagle. And the four beasts had each of them six wings about him; and they were full of eyes within: and they rest not day and night, saying, Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come. And when those beasts give glory and honour and thanks to him that sat on the throne, who liveth for ever and ever. The four and twenty elders fall down before him that sat on the throne, and worship him that liveth for ever and ever, and cast their crowns before the throne, saying, Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created” (Revelation 4:1-11).

 

            “And I saw in the right hand of him that sat on the throne a book written within and on the backside, sealed with seven seals. And I saw a strong angel proclaiming with a loud voice, Who is worthy to open the book, and to loose the seals thereof? And no man in heaven, nor in earth, neither under the earth, was able to open the book, neither to look thereon. And I wept much, because no man was found worthy to open and to read the book, neither to look thereon. And one of the elders saith unto me, Weep not: behold, the Lion of the tribe of Juda, the Root of David, hath prevailed to pen the book, and to loose the seven seals thereof. And I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of thew throne and of the four beasts, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth. And he came and took the book out of the right hand of him that sat upon the throne. And when he had taken the book, the four beasts and four twenty elders fell down before the Lamb, having every one of them harps, and golden vials full of odours, which are the prayers of saints. And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by the blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation; and hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign of the earth” (Revelation 5:1-10).

 

            “And I beheld, and I heard the voice of many angels round about the throne and the beasts and the elders: and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands; saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing. And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever. And the four beasts said, Amen. And the four and twenty elders fell down and worshipped him that liveth for ever and ever” (Revelation 5:11-14).

 

            When you come to the fourth and fifth chapters of the prophetic book of the Revelation of Jesus Christ you will find a wonderful and drastic transition taking place—not only within the book itself and not only within the vision the apostle John saw but also in the location of events which unfolded before the prophet. The second and third chapters of this prophetic book deal exclusively and specifically with the events which transpired on the earth for the events which are present in the midst of it deal with the church itself. As you read the words which are found in the second and third chapters of the prophetic book of the Revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ you will find seven unique and distinct letters written to seven different churches. These seven letters were written to seven different churches which were present in what was considered Asia during those days and what is considered modern day Turkey. Beginning with Ephesus which is perhaps the most well-known of the seven churches the Lord Jesus Christ instructs the apostle John to write those things which he saw. What’s more is the Lord Jesus would instruct the apostle John to write those things which were, those things which are and those things which are to come. This is incredibly important for us to recognize for when we read the words which are found in the prophetic book of the Revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ we must needs understand it in terms of one book that was written to be read unto and among the churches which were spoken of and addressed in the midst of it.

 

            As I sit here today thinking about and considering the words which are found in the prophetic book of the Revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ I can’t help but be brought face to face with the tremendous picture of a book that contained many parts and was written and sent unto seven different churches which were present in the midst of Asia. What makes this all the more intriguing when you take the time to consider it is when you read the prophetic book of the Revelation of Jesus Christ and understand that what we find in the second and third chapters wasn’t merely an individual letter that was written unto each of these seven churches and that was it. The more I read this prophetic book the more I can’t help but encounter the tremendous reality that the prophetic book as a whole was written as a single cohesive document that was delivered unto the apostle John by the Lord’s angel that he might write down what he saw and send it unto these seven churches. This takes on an entirely different meaning when you think about the fact that the church in Ephesus would have not only read the letter that was addressed to it but they would have also read the letters written to the other seven churches. The church in Philadelphia would have not only read the letter which was addressed to it but would have read the words which were written unto the other churches. This would be true of each of the seven churches as they would not only read the letter addressed to them but would read the letters which were addressed to the other churches as well.

 

            Within this prophetic book of the Revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ we encounter the tremendous truth that the entire book as a whole was written by the apostle John and was meant to be delivered unto these seven churches that they might hear and receive the revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ. In the first and opening chapter of this prophetic book we find the apostle John being instructed to write down that which he saw and was then told that those who read the words contained within this prophetic book and kept them would indeed be blessed. The words which are found in this prophetic book were entirely and altogether meant to be read in the midst of these seven churches—perhaps beginning with the church that was found in Asia. I have previously read that these seven cities formed a major trade and travel route that would have been used during those days and thus would have made it very easy for this letter to have begun at Ephesus and then traveled from Ephesus to the various different cities before ultimately finding its place in Laodicea. We must needs recognize and understand when reading the words found in this prophetic book of that what is contained therein was indeed meant to be read in the midst of each of these seven churches and that there was to be nothing that was omitted or left out. Each of these seven churches were meant to hear the words which the Lord Jesus had spoken, the words which the Holy Spirit was speaking unto the churches, and all the words which were contained therein.

 

            Upon reading the words which are found in the second and third chapters of this prophetic book you will find the apostle Paul writing to these seven churches located in the region of Asia. These seven letters were written unto these seven churches revealing a measure of the Lord Jesus Christ. What’s more is that each of these letters would contain a powerful insight and declaration from the Lord as He would profess unto them that He knew their works. He whose eyes are as flames of fire were well acquainted with their works and both revealed and addressed them in each of these letters. What’s more is that in each of these letters there is the invitation to hear what the Spirit is speaking unto the churches as well as a promise to those who overcome in this life. With this being said there were some churches whom the Lord Jesus not only revealed their works but also revealed that which He had against them for their deeds and actions were not found to be righteous in the sight of the living God. Oh pause for a moment and consider just how incredible this truly is for the Lord Jesus Christ would indeed declare that although these were churches which were sanctified, redeemed and purchased by His shed blood and the atonement He made on the cross there were those whose deeds were not found to be righteous in the sight of the living God. IN the second and third chapters of this prophetic book we find certain churches which the Lord Jesus wrote these letters to and addressed their deeds and actions which He found in need of correction, rebuke, chastisement and even a powerful and clarion call to repent.

 

            I sit here today thinking about and considering the words which were found in this passage of Scripture and I can’t help but be brought face to face with the fact that in the second and third chapters of this prophetic book we find the apostle John writing distinct and unique letters which were written and sent unto these seven churches which were present in the midst of Asia. It might very well be said that the words and language we find in these two chapters deal specifically with the realm of the earth and that which is contained within it for the apostle John was writing unto churches and saints which were present in the midst of the earth. We dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this when reading the prophetic book of the Revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ for when we come to the fourth and fifth chapters we find the apostle John transitioning from that which is present within the earth to that which is present in heaven itself. It is in the opening verse of the fourth chapter we find the apostle John looking and beholding a door that was opened in heaven. What’s more is not only did the apostle John see a door that was open in heaven but the first voice which He heard which were as a trumpet and talked with him invited him to come up hither for they would show him things which must take place thereafter. The apostle John writes that immediately he was in the spirit and began to behold things which no man had personally seen or witnessed previously.

 

            As you begin reading the words which are found in the fourth and fifth chapters of this prophetic book you will find the apostle John witnessing and beholding something which very few in all of history ever received and experienced. In the fourth and fifth chapters of this prophetic book you will find a door being opened in heaven and the apostle John being given an invitation to come up hither that he might be shown those things which must take place thereafter. What makes this truly unique is that in order to understand the events which took place within and upon the earth you must needs understand that which was taking place in heaven. In fact I would dare say it is impossible to truly understand the events which would unfold within and upon the earth without first recognizing and understanding the events which were unfolding in heaven. It would be that which takes place in heaven that would directly impact and affect the earth and the inhabitants of the earth. What’s more is not only would the events which took place in heaven directly impact the inhabitants of the earth but the events which took place in heaven would directly impact the earth itself. The more you read this prophetic book the more you will be brought face to face with the truly incredible truth surrounding the events which took place in heaven—events which would dramatically and drastically alter the trajectory of the inhabitants of the earth and history as we know it.

 

            I sit here today thinking about and considering the words which are found within the fourth and fifth chapters of this prophetic book and I am brought face to face with scenes which were unfolding in heaven. It is the events which took place in heaven which would indeed directly impact both the earth and everything that lives and moves upon it. In fact I would dare say that if you want to truly understand the prophetic book of the Revelation of the Lord Jesus—specifically the events which took place in chapters four through twenty—you must needs understand it through the lens of that which took place in heaven would indeed directly impact the inhabitants of the earth and even the earth itself. That which took place in heaven would indeed directly impact the earth and everything that is present within it for that which would begin in heaven would indeed wonderfully and powerfully impact everything that would take place in the earth itself. What’s more is that as you read the words which are found in the fourth and fifth chapters of this prophetic book you will find that absolutely everything that would take place in heaven—and not only what would take place in heaven but what would take place within the earth would start and begin with the throne which was present in the midst of the throne in heaven.

 

            The more I delve into the prophetic book of the Revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ the more I am brought face to face with the unbelievable truth and reality that absolutely everything that is written within this book from the fourth chapter on would indeed begin with and at the throne which was present in heaven. What’s more is that essentially the prophetic book of the Revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ would be a series of interactions and manifestations at the throne of the living God. Beginning with the fourth and fifth chapters of this prophetic book we are introduced to the throne which was present in the midst of heaven, the One who sat upon the throne and that which would take place before and all around the throne. As you continue reading the words which are found in this prophetic book of the Revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ you will find that which takes place in heaven beginning with the throne and the One who sat upon the throne. Not only this but as you continue reading in the prophetic book you will find that there would be a counterfeit throne that would be set up upon the earth. In the thirteenth chapter of this prophetic book we find the dragon which was the ancient serpent from old which was called the devil and Satan giving the beast which came forth from the midst of the sea his great power, his authority and his throne. It would be all the dragon gave unto the beast that would indeed make an attempt to set up a false and counterfeit throne upon the earth to directly contrast and conflict with the throne which was present in the midst of heaven.

 

            With all of this being said I can’t help but think about and consider that one of the undercurrents and themes contained within this prophetic book of the Revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ is indeed a series of events which would transpire before and around the throne which was present in the midst of heaven. It would be in the fourth and fifth chapters of this prophetic book we find the apostle John being invited to come up hither and being in the spirit and beholding a great throne which was present in the midst of heaven. The apostle John would indeed witness and behold the One who sat upon the throne, the likeness of the throne itself as well as all those who were before and about the throne in heaven. You cannot read the words which are found in these chapters and not encounter and come face to face with the incredible truth surrounding the throne which was present in heaven and how everything that would take place in heaven and on the earth would indeed begin with and at the throne in heaven. We dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this for it calls and draws our attention to the tremendous truth that at the very heart of everything that has taken place and everything that will take place in heaven and earth until the great time when the beast and the false prophet, Satan himself and all those who aligned themselves with Satan throughout the millennia being cast into the lake of fire. Everything that would take place from the beginning of creation all the way through the final one being cast into the lake of fire would have at the very heart and center of it the throne in heaven and the One who sat upon the throne.

 

            I read the words which are found in this prophetic book and I can’t help but be brought face to face with the awesome and incredible truth that the apostle John would experience a transition from the churches which were present within and upon the earth in Asia to heaven itself—and not only to heaven itself but also to the throne which was present in heaven. Moreover the apostle John would indeed witness and behold this throne which would be present in the midst of heaven and One who sat upon it. It is important for us to recognize and understand this particular truth for there were only a select few individuals within the course of Scripture who would experience a vision of the throne in heaven and the One who sat upon the throne. Beginning with the prophet Isaiah we would find this ancient Hebrew prophet—in the year that king Uzziah died—seeing the LORD of hosts seated upon the throne which was present in the midst of heaven. In the year when an earthly king died and in the year when the earthly throne might have been vacated the prophet looked and beheld a throne that was greater—a throne that was not present within and upon the earth but a throne that was present in the midst of heaven. Not only this but this ancient Hebrew prophet would indeed see One who was seated upon the throne and would witness and behold something I am absolutely convinced would incredibly and dramatically alter and transform the trajectory of his life. Oh consider if you will the words which are found in the sixth chapter of the prophetic book of Isaiah beginning with the first verse:

 

            “In the year that king Uzziah died I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train filled the temple. Above it stood the seraphims: each one had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly. And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of hosts; The whole earth is full of his glory. And the posts of the door moved at the voice of him that cried, and the house was filled with smoke. Then said I, Woe is me! For I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: For mine eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts. Then flew one of the seraphims unto me, having a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with the tongs from off the altar; and he laid it upon my mouth ,and said, Lo, this hath touched thy lips; and thine iniquity is taken away, and thy sin purged. Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me. And he said, Go, and tell this people” (Isaiah 6:1-9).

 

            It is necessary for us to read and pay attention to the words which are found in this passage of Scripture for the prophet Isaiah would indeed be one of only a few people recorded in Scripture who would look and behold the throne which was present in the midst of heaven. In the year that king Uzziah died this ancient Hebrew prophet would indeed see the throne of God in heaven and the LORD of hosts—the Holy One of Israel—seated upon the throne. Upon reading the words which are found in this passage you will find the prophet emphatically writing how in the year that king Uzziah died he saw also the LORD sitting upon a throne and that throne was high and lifted up and His train filled the temple. What’s more is this ancient Hebrew prophet would see seraphim above the throne with six wings which they used to cover their face, cover their feet and fly. These seraphim would each cry out one to another, saying, “Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of hosts” and “The whole earth is full of his glory.” Oh this is something we must needs recognize and pay close attention to for when we come to the fourth and fifth chapters of the prophetic book of the Revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ we find the apostle John being yet one more who would indeed look into heaven and see the great throne that was present in the midst of it. What’s more is that not only did the apostle John see the throne which was present in the midst of heaven but the apostle John would also see the One who sat upon the throne. In addition to this the apostle John would see all those who were gathered before and about the throne and the great and wonderful worship that would take place in heaven before the throne and the One who sat upon it.

 

            The more you think about and consider this powerful revelation of the throne which is present in heaven and the One who is seated upon the throne the more you must needs recognize and understand there was another prophet who looked and beheld the throne which was present in the midst of heaven. If you turn and direct your attention to the prophetic book of Ezekiel you will find that this exiled priest of the most high God would be in the land of the Chaldeans by the river Chebar and would see the heavens opened. What’s more is that not only would this priest turned prophet see the heavens opened but he would also see the glory of the living God before him. There in the land of Babylon by this great river this priest of the most high God would be given a tremendous and wonderful vision of the throne of the living God in heaven. I am convinced it is absolutely necessary for us to recognize and pay close attention to the words which are found in this particular chapter for this would be one more individual aside from the prophet Isaiah who would be granted a vision of the throne which was present in heaven—and not only a vision of the throne which was in heaven but also of the One who sat upon the throne in heaven. If there is one thing I can’t help but think about and consider when reading the words which are found in these passages of Scripture is that whenever one received and a saw a vision of the throne in heaven they always saw it with One seated upon the throne. There was never a single vision of the throne which was present in heaven when those who saw it did not see One who was seated upon the throne.

 

            I am writing these words today and I find it absolutely incredible to think about and consider the awesome and powerful truth that while it is indeed true there were those who were given wonderful and powerful visions of the throne which was present in the midst of heaven there was not a single time when that throne was empty or vacated. Those who were privileged and fortunate to look beyond the natural realm of time and space and peer into the supernatural and spiritual realm and see into heaven would not only see the throne but would see One who was seated upon it. This is something we have great need of recognizing and understanding for when we think about the throne which was and is and has been present in the midst of heaven we must recognize that there has always been One who is seated upon it. You have never and you will never find a single time in all of Scripture where the throne was viewed by those who were present in the midst of the earth and there was not One who was seated upon the throne. This is what makes the vision which the prophet Isaiah saw so incredibly unique and powerful when you think about it for it calls and draws our attention to the fact that although earthly thrones can indeed be vacated and empty through death or through other means the throne in heaven can never and will never be vacated or empty. Perhaps one of the greatest sources of hope, comfort and encouragement we can have in this life is knowing that there is a throne in heaven which is the ultimate authority in both heaven and earth and there is and there always has been One who is seated upon that throne. We dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this awesome and powerful truth for when we think and speak about the throne in heaven—not only is it the ultimate authority for everything that takes place in heaven and everything in the earth but there is always One who is seated upon the throne.

 

            I find it absolutely necessary at this moment to call and draw your attention to the words which are found in the first chapter of the prophetic book of Ezekiel which is found in the Old Testament. It is in the Old Testament prophetic book of Ezekiel we find this ancient Hebrew prophet being one of only a select few who while present upon the earth were able to see the throne which was present in heaven. Ezekiel was one of only a few who were permitted to see the throne which was present in heaven—and not only the throne which was present in heaven but also see One who was seated upon the throne. Although Ezekiel and Isaiah were generations removed they would both see the throne in heaven—and not only would they both see the throne in heaven but they would both see One seated upon the throne. HE IS STILL SEATED UPON THE THRONE! Oh how absolutely astounding and remarkable it is to read the words which are found in these two passages of Scripture and consider the fact that although these two individuals were removed by time and even geographical locations—the prophet Isaiah was present in the midst of the land of Judah and perhaps even the city of Jerusalem and the prophet Ezekiel was present in the land of the Chaldeans—they would both witness and behold the throne which stood in heaven. What is truly beautiful about this particular reality when you think about it is that even when Ezekiel himself would see a vision of the throne which stood in heaven he would see there was One who was still seated upon that throne. In other words that throne had not been and would not be vacated—despite whatever events would take place within the earth. Consider now if you will the following words which are found in the Old Testament prophetic book of Ezekiel beginning with the first chapter of this Old Testament book:

 

            “Now it came to pass in the thirtieth year, in the fourth month, in the fifth day of the month, as I was among the captives by the river of Chebar, that the heavens were opened, and I saw visions of God. In the fifth day of the month, which was the fifth year of king Jehoaichin’s captivity, the word of the LORD came expressly unto Ezekiel the priest, the son of Buzi, in the land of the Chaldeans, by the river Chebar; and the hand of the LORD was there upon him” (Ezekiel 1:1-3).

 

            “Now as I beheld the living creatures, behold one wheel upon the earth by the living creatures, with his four faces. The appearance of the wheels and their work was like unto the colour of a beryl: and they four had one likeness: and their appearance and their work was as it were a wheel in the middle of a wheel. When they went, they went upon their four sides: and they turned not when they went. As for their rings, they were so high that they were dreadful; and their rings were full of eyes round about them four. And when the living creatures went, the wheels went by them: and when the living creatures were lifted up from the earth, the wheels were lifted up. Whithersoever the spirit was to go, they went, thither was their spirit to go; and the wheels were lifted up over against them: for the spirit of the living creatures was in the wheels. When those went, these went; and when those stood, these stood: and when those were lifted up from the earth, the wheels were lifted up over against them: for the spirit of the living creature was in the wheels. And the likeness of the firmament upon the heads of the living creature was as the colour of the terrible crystal, stretched forth over their heads above. And under the firmament were their wings straight, the one toward the other: every one had two, which covered on this side, and every one had two, which covered on that side, their bodies. And when they went, I heard the noise of their wings, like the noise of great waters, as the voice of the Almighty, the voice of speech, as the noise of an host: when they stood, they let down their wings. And there was a voice from the firmament that was over their heads, when they stood, and had let down their wings” (Ezekiel 1:15-25).

 

            Thus far we have seen the heavens opened unto the prophet Ezekiel and we have witnessed the hand of the Lord and the Spirit being upon Him. Not only this but we find Ezekiel seeing within the glory of the living God both wheels and living creatures which moved  to and fro before him in the vision which he saw. When you come to the twenty-sixth verse of the first and opening chapter of this prophetic book you will find that this initial vision would not be complete without the prophet seeing a vision of the throne which was present in the midst of heaven. It would be in the first chapter beginning with the twenty-sixth verse the prophet Ezekiel would see a vision of the firmament which was over their heads and above that firmament was the likeness of a throne. Oh this is something we must needs recognize and understand for it calls and draws our attention to the absolutely wonderful truth and reality of the throne of God being revealed unto this ancient Hebrew priest while he was living among the captives which were present in the midst of the land of the Chaldeans. It would be there in the midst of the land of the Chaldeans by the river Chebar in the thirtieth year of their captivity this prophet would look and behold the heavens being opened, the glory of the living God being manifested before him and the image and likeness of a throne that was above the firmament and above the heads of the living creatures. Oh consider now if you will the following words which are found in this passage of Scripture beginning with the twenty-sixth verse:

 

            “And above the firmament that was over their heads was the likeness of a throne, as the appearance of a sapphire stone: and upon the likeness of the throne was the likeness as the appearance of a man above upon it. And I saw as the colour of amber, as the appearance of fire round about within it, from the appearance of his loins even upward, and from the appearance of his loins even downward, I saw as it were the appearance of fire, and it had brightness round aboutl. As the appearance of the bow that is in the cloud in the day of rain, so was the appearance of the brightness round about. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the LORD. And when I saw it, I fell upon my face, and I heard a voice of one that spake” (Ezekiel 1:26-28).

 

            Oh we must needs recognize and understand the words which are found within these passages of Scripture for what is contained therein call and draw our attention to the truly wonderful and powerful truth surrounding the throne which was present in heaven and how here in the land of the Chaldeans by the river Chebar the prophet Ezekiel would look and behold this throne which was present in heaven. What’s more is that even all these years later and while the people of God were present in the midst of their captivity the throne of God in heaven was still active and present in the midst of the earth. Thus far we have seen in the death of an earthly and natural Hebrew king the throne of God in heaven was not only active and manifested but there was also One who was seated upon the throne. What’s more is during the days of Ezekiel—days of captivity and exile—the throne of God was still active and manifested in heaven. How absolutely wonderful and incredible it is to read the words which are found within these two passages of Scripture and come face to face—not only with the tremendous truth that the throne of God was still manifested in heaven but there was also still One who was seated upon the throne. Even though the people of God were living as captives and exiles in the midst of the land of the Chaldeans the throne of God was still present in the midst of heaven and there was still One who was seated upon the throne. What great comfort, hope and encouragement is found in this particular truth for regardless of that which we face and encounter in this life there is still and there always will be the throne of God in heaven and One who is seated upon the throne in heaven. This reality is one which we dare not and must not miss and lose sight of for to do so would be to miss out on an absolutely incredible truth surrounding the fact that regardless of what we experience and go through in this life the throne of God still stands in heaven and there is One who is still seated upon the throne.

 

            If you continue reading in the Old Testament you will find there was another Hebrew prophet who was given a wonderful and powerful vision of the throne which was present in the midst of heaven. As you turn and direct your attention to the seventh chapter of the prophetic book of Daniel you will find this ancient Hebrew prophet during the days of the reign of Belshazzar the son of Nebuchadnezzar seeing and beholding a wonderful and powerful vision of the throne in heaven—and not only of the throne in heaven but also of one who would sit upon the throne. Thus far during the days of Isaiah and Ezekiel we find the throne of God being manifested and standing in heaven—and not only the throne of God being manifested in the midst of heaven but also One who was seated upon that throne. Now here we find another Hebrew prophet—one who like Ezekiel also lived and dwelt in the land of the Chaldeans as a direct result of the captivity and exile of the children of Israel—who would be granted a truly astonishing and powerful vision and revelation of the throne of God which stood in heaven and One who was seated upon the throne. What makes this all the more unique and astonishing is when you consider the fact that this is now the third time the throne which stands in heaven was being witnessed and beheld by one who was upon the earth—and not only was it the third time the throne of God in heaven would be seen but it was also the third time when the throne of God would be witnessed and beheld as having One who was seated upon it. Oh with this in mind I invite you to consider if you will the following words which are found in the seventh chapter of the prophetic book of Daniel beginning with the ninth verse:

 

            “I beheld till the thrones were cast down, and the Ancient of days did sit, whose garment was white as snow, and the hair of his head like the pure woold: his throne was like the fiery flame, and his wheels as burning fire. A fiery stream issued and came forth from before him: thousand thousands ministered unto him, and ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him; the judgment was set, and the books were opened. I beheld then because of the voice of the great words which the horn spake: I beheld even till the beast was slain, and his body was destroyed, and given to the burning flame. As concerning the rest of the beasts, they had their dominion taken away: yet their lives were prolonged for a season and time. I saw in the night visions, and behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before him. And there was given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed” (Daniel 7:9-14).

 

            The more I think about and consider the words and language that is found in each of these passages in the Old Testament the more I can’t help but be brought face to face with the awesome and incredible truth surrounding the fact that here we have three men who were each given a vision of the throne of heaven. What’s more is that although these men were separated by distance, and time and space they would each witness and behold the throne of God standing in the midst of heaven. What’s more is that each of these men not only see the throne standing in heaven but they would also see One who was seated upon the throne. How absolutely wonderful and powerful it is to read the words which are found in this passage of Scripture and consider the awesome and wonderful truth surrounding these men and how regardless of their being separated by time and space they would not only see the throne of God standing in heaven but they would also see the throne being occupied and one seated upon the throne. This is something we have great need of paying close attention to when considering the words which are found in the prophetic book of the Revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ for here we have the apostle John being one more individual who was granted a vision of the throne of God which was standing in heaven. What’s more is that what makes these two chapters so incredibly unique and powerful when you think about and consider them is when you see how all these years later the apostle John would see the throne of God standing in the midst of heaven—a throne which Ezekiel, Isaiah and Daniel would each see in their own generation.

 

            If there is one thing I so love about the words which are found in these two chapters it’s that although the apostle John was separated by several millennia from these ancient Hebrew prophets he would see the same throne which they saw. Pause for a moment and consider the fact that when the apostle John looked and beheld the throne which was in heaven it was not a new throne nor was it a different throne from the one which these ancient Hebrew prophets saw themselves. What we must needs recognize is that the throne which the apostle John saw in heaven was the same throne which Isaiah saw in the year king Uzziah died, the same throne Ezekiel saw in the thirtieth year of the captivity of the children of Israel in the land of the Chaldeans, and the same throne Daniel saw during the days of the reign of Belshazzar king of Babylon. Now here we are all these generations and centuries later and we find the apostle John looking and beholding a door being opened in heaven and a voice speaking unto him inviting him to come up hither that he might be shown those things which ought to be manifested in the midst of the earth. The throne which the apostle John saw and beheld in these chapters would indeed be the very same throne the ancient Hebrew prophets saw themselves during their own generations. What’s more is that not only would it be the same throne that would be seen by these ancient Hebrew prophets but also the same One who sat upon the throne during the days and generations of these prophets would be the same One who would be seated upon the throne during the days of the apostle John. Here we are all these generations and centuries later and the throne of God would still be standing in heaven and the LORD of hosts whom Isaiah, Daniel and Ezekiel saw would be the same one the apostle John would see.

 

            As you continue along in this passage you will find the voice of the one who initially spoke with John—that one whose voice was as the sound of a trumpet—inviting the apostle to come up hither that he might be shown that which must take place hereafter. It’s quite unique when you consider the events which would take place and unfold shortly thereafter and how they were intrinsically linked and connected to the throne which was present in the midst of heaven. We dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this reality for if you want to understand all the events which would take place—both in heaven and upon the earth—as mentioned in this prophetic book of the Revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ you must needs recognize and understand that everything revolved around the throne. What’s more is that not only did that which would take place in heaven and that which would take place in the earth revolve around the throne but it would all flow directly from the throne which stood in heaven. The same throne which the ancient Hebrew prophets Isaiah, Ezekiel and Daniel saw would be the same throne from which all the events which took place in heaven and earth would proceed and flow forth from. It is utterly impossible to read the words which are found in this passage of Scripture and not be brought face to face with the beautiful and captivating reality surrounding the throne of God in heaven and how from it proceed all that takes place in heaven and on the earth. What’s more is that the throne of God and the One who is seated upon it is the ultimate authority and word concerning and over everything that takes place within heaven and upon the earth.

 

            I sit here today thinking about and considering the words which are found in these two chapters and I am brought face to face with the fact that immediately between the letters to the church and the seals of the book being opened would be a vision of the throne. This is incredibly important to think about and consider for that which links the seals on the scroll and the churches which were present within and upon the earth was indeed the throne of the living God. The apostle John was given an invitation to come up hither that he might be shown those things which must take place thereafter. Immediately after this he was in the spirit and beheld a throne which was set in heaven. What’s more is that not only did the apostle John see a throne which was set in heaven but he also saw one who was seated upon the throne. This is something we must needs recognize and understand for up until this point the apostle John had walked with and followed the Lord Jesus during those three and a half years of public ministry in the midst of the land of Judaea and Galilee. The Lord Jesus Christ had been departed from the earth and ascended into heaven at the right hand of the Father for more than three decades now and here we find the apostle John being exiled on the isle of Patmos for the word of God and for the testimony of the Lord Jesus Christ. Despite his being present on the isle of Patmos he would indeed see a vision of the throne of God which was set in heaven—and not only the throne of God which was set in heaven but also one who was seated upon the throne. Oh we dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this for it calls and draws our attention to the absolutely tremendous truth surrounding the vision the apostle John witness and beheld on this particular occasion. The apostle John would indeed see a door being opened in heaven and would hear a voice of one like as a trumpet calling him to come up hither that he might be shown those things which must take place hereafter.

 

            If you take the time to read the words which are found in this passage of Scripture you can and will be brought face to face with the truly awesome and wonderful truth surrounding the apostle John being invited to come up that he might be shown those things which would take place hereafter. The apostle John would immediately be in the spirit and it would be in the spirit he would behold a throne which was set in heaven and one who was set upon the throne. What we must needs recognize concerning this is that not only was One still seated upon the throne after all these generations and centuries but it would be the same One who was seated upon the throne from the beginning. The One whom Isaiah, Ezekiel and Daniel saw seated upon the throne would be the same One whom the apostle John would see seated upon the throne. What’s more is that not only would the throne of God be occupied by the same One whom the prophets Ezekiel, Isaiah and Daniel saw but everything that would transpire in the vision which the apostle John would see flowed directly from the throne in heaven and the One who was seated upon the throne. Oh if you want to understand the events which took place in heaven—and not only the events which took place in heaven but also the events which took place in the earth—you must needs begin with and at the throne which is set in heaven. Not only must you begin with and at the throne which was set in heaven but you must also begin with and from the One who was and still is seated upon the throne. Absolutely everything which took place upon the earth and in heaven would proceed directly from the throne which was in heaven.

 

            In the fourth chapter of this prophetic book you will find the apostle John seeing a throne set in heaven and one being set upon that throne. Not only this but the apostle John would also see the appearance and likeness of the One who was seated upon the throne for he would go on to describe the one who sat upon the throne looking like unto an emerald. Round about the throne were four and twenty seats and upon the seats were four and twenty elders sitting, clothed in white raiment and having on their heads crowns of gold. From and out of the throne proceeded lightnings and thunderings and voices and there were seven lamps of fire burning before the throne which were the seven Spirits of God. Before the throne there was a sea likened unto crystal and in the midst of the throne and round about the throne were four beasts full of eyes before and behind. This vision which the apostle John would see would also be very similar to that which the prophet Isaiah saw for whereas the prophet Isaiah saw the seraphim flying and crying out one to another, saying, “Holy, holy, holy: the whole earth is full of His glory” the four living creatures would cry out day and night, saying, “Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come.” Oh we dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this for if you want to truly understand everything which takes place in this Old Testament book you must needs recognize and understand that it all starts with the throne and the One who was and is seated upon the throne. You cannot truly understand or attempt to understand that which is present in the midst of the prophetic book of the Revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ without recognizing the presence and manifestation of the throne which was present in heaven and the One who was seated upon the throne.

            The apostle John was invited to come up hither and see those things which must come thereafter and everything that would come thereafter would proceed, flow from and begin with the throne which was present in the midst of heaven. Not only this but all the events which took place in the midst of heaven and earth would have their origin and their foundation—not only in the throne but also with the One who was seated upon the throne which was present in the midst of heaven. This is something we must needs recognize for everything that would take place in the earth would be ordained and appointed by the eternal Father and the One who was seated upon the throne. All the events which were taking place within and throughout this prophetic book of the Revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ would indeed have their origin and their source from the throne and the One who was seated in the midst of the throne. Oh as you read the prophetic book of the Revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ you must needs understand that absolutely everything that is found within it points to the throne of God which is set in heaven. The words and language found in the fourth chapter of the prophetic book of the Revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ does in fact bring us face to face with the source of all authority, all dominion, all glory, all honor, all power and all majesty that is due in both heaven and on earth. What’s more is that what we find in the fourth chapter is a powerful and beautiful picture of the source and foundation of all worship—both in heaven and on the earth.

 

            The more you read the words which are found in the fourth chapter of this prophetic book of the Revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ the more you will encounter the beautiful reality of the worship which takes place in heaven. The apostle John not only saw the throne which was set in heaven and one who was set upon the throne but the apostle John also saw continuous worship night and day before the throne of God which was in heaven. The apostle John was granted exclusive access to the throne room in heaven and was able to see the twenty-four thrones round about the throne—and not only the twenty and four thrones about the throne but also the four living creatures. You cannot escape the fourth chapter without witnessing and beholding the throne set in heaven and the One who is seated upon the throne. What’s more is that before you witness the authority, the dominion and the power that flows from the throne you will first and foremost witness the honor, the glory, the majesty and the worship that surrounds and takes place before the throne which is in heaven. We dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this for the first encounter and vision of the throne which the apostle John saw was not one of judgment and wrath but one of worship and praise in heaven. The apostle John saw twenty-four elders falling down before the One who sat upon the throne and worshipped Him who lives for ever and ever as they cast their crowns before the throne. The four living creatures would themselves enter into worship before the throne of God which was set in heaven and would worship that One who was seated upon the throne.

 

            As I prepare to bring this writing to a close it is absolutely imperative we recognize that when we speak about the throne which the apostle John saw in heaven—and the One who was seated upon the throne—at the very heart of that throne is worship night and day and continually. Any discussion about the throne of God which is set in heaven must needs include a wonderful and beautiful picture of the worship which takes place before it as the four and twenty elders fall down before the throne and before the One who sits upon the throne as they cast their golden crowns before Him. The four living creatures each cry out unto one another, saying, “Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come.” It is in this context of the throne, the one who is seated upon the throne that we come to the fifth chapter and not only see the throne and not only see the One who was seated upon the throne but we also see the Lamb which was slain. It is in the fifth chapter of this prophetic book we encounter and come face to face with a scroll which was present in the right hand of the One who sat upon the throne and there being no one in heaven nor on earth who was worthy to open the scroll.

 

            IS HE WORTHY? I conclude this writing with a powerful declaration concerning the worship of the living God which the four and twenty elders and the four living creatures entered into night and day. With this being said we must not only understand the worship of the One who is seated upon the throne but also the worthiness of the Lamb who was slain before the foundation of the world. It is in the fourth chapter of this prophetic book we encounter the awesome and wonderful truth that the One who is seated upon the throne is indeed worthy of the worship He receives night and day while it is in the fifth chapter we encounter the Lamb which was slain being worthy to take the scroll from the right hand of the One who is seated upon the throne. What’s more is the Lamb who was slain was worthy to take the scroll from the right hand of the One who was seated upon the throne, break the seals which were placed upon it and read the words which were contained within it. The apostle John saw the Lamb which was as it were having been slain coming and taking the book out of the right hand of Him which sat upon the throne. When he had taken the book the four beasts and the four and twenty elders fell down before the Lamb having every one of them harps and golden vials full of odors which are the prayers of the saints. These sang a new song ascribing worth unto the Lamb as they beautifully and wonderfully sang, “Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by the blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation; and hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth” (Revelation 5:10).

 

            It is absolutely necessary we recognize and understand the words which are found in this passage of Scripture for while in the fourth chapter we encounter the worship before the throne it is in the fifth chapter we not only encounter the worthiness of the Lamb which has been slain but we also encounter an even greater degree and measure of worship. The worship which we find in this passage of Scripture is directly associated with the Lamb having been slain and because he was slain He was found worthy to take the scroll from the hand of the One who sat upon the throne and to break the seals and read the contents therein. When you come to the eleventh chapter of this chapter you will find the apostle John hearing the voice of many angels round about the throne and the beats and the elders numbering ten thousand times ten thousand and thousands of thousands proclaiming worship before and unto the Lamb. Please do not miss and lose sight of this for the dragon would essentially attempt to mirror and mimic this in the thirteenth chapter. The Father Himself—the One who was seated upon the throne—would be worshipped in the fourth chapter and it is in the fifth chapter where we find the Son being worshipped. The worship before and unto the Son was directly linked and connected to His being as a Lamb which was slain before the foundation of the world. Oh we must needs recognize and pay close attention to this for at the very heart and center of the prophetic book of the Revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ is not only the throne in heaven and the One who is seated upon it but also what men has done and will do with the eternal Son. It is with this in mind I leave you with the following words which are found in the final verses of the fifth chapter as an invitation to you concerning your response to the Lamb which was slain before the foundation of the world:

 

And I beheld, and I heard the voice of many angels round about the throne and the beasts and the elders: and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands; saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing. And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I say, Belssing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever. And the four beasts said, Amen. And the four and twenty elders fell down and worshipped him that liveth for ever and ever” (Revelation 5:11-14).

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