Bible Study Revelation 5
The scroll in God’s right hand:
God’s right hand : His power. (Ex. 15:6,12; Ps. 44:4, 63:9, 118:15, Is 48:13).
The scroll: Ezekiel 2:9 : also written on front and back. God’s warning and judgment announced.
Seven seals: highly secured! Daniel 8:26, 12:4 : visions of the end time. Daniel had to seal/hid them
Revelation 5: the last part of God’s plan, in which He will bring everything to fulfillment.
‘open the scroll’ (2-5): 4 times! Great expectation. All eyes focused on the scroll.
John weeps, because nobody can open it and this will now remain secret. God’s plan can not be executed! Does suffering and persecution have to continue indefinitely?
This is all about God’s plan, not human plans. Only the One appointed by God can do it.
Vs. 5: one of the elders announces Him to John. “Do not weep”.
Lion: his strength, majesty (Gen. 49:9, Jacob’s blessing over Judah),
Tribe of Judah: Fulfillment of Gen. 49:10 : the scepter will not depart from Judah, nor the ruler’s staff from between his feet.
Root of David: Before David was, HE was. He is the origin of David.
One of the elders: Elders are witnesses of God’s deeds in the past.
In the midst of the throne: in the inner circle, right at the throne: before the One seated on the throne. In the centre of the attention.
Lamb: He expects a Lion but sees a Lamb, and as though it had been slain.
The power and strength of the Lion Christ is in His love and meekness. (Meekness: position of strength!).
Lamb: fulfillment of OT prophecy: Passover lamb. Sacrificial lambs.
Seven horns: this Lamb possesses power: horn is a sign of power (Ps. 18:2; 75:4,5,10; 89:17,24; 92:10; 112:9; 132:17; 148:14; Jer 48:25; Lam.2:3,17; Ez. 29:21).
Seven eyes: Seven number of divine completeness: He sees everything.
Seven horns and seven eyes: the seven Spirits of God: the power of the Holy Spirit, watchful all over the earth. His omni-presence again emphasised, in contrast with Satan (Rev. 13)
He has taken the scroll: He has received the authority to open it. (LD 18: through Whom the Father governs all things).
They sang a new song:
Four living creatures, twenty-four elders: entire creation with God’s entire people
Sang a new song: progress in God’s work of salvation.
Golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints: Gives focus to our prayers!
Prayers will reach God’s throne!
What is the focus of our prayers? Vs. 8 speaks about the prayers of the saints, being part of the worship of God’s people, but also part of God’s plan for the end time. In 6:10 we read again about the prayers of the saints (those who had been slain), then in heaven under the altar, and 8:3 again mentions the prayers of all the saints. What does this teach us about the importance of our prayer and about its focus?
Kings and priests: see Melchizedek (Genesis 14),
Jesus Christ: King and Priest: Lion and Lamb. Makes us kings and priests with Him.
Redeemed us to God: Bought us from slavery to make us kings and priests for God.
Out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation: Four words: the number for the entire earth
Contrast with Satan, Revelation 13:3.
Those redeemed: purpose is to reign on the earth. Not taken away from this earth. God’s creation being redeemed and renewed.
Many angels around the throne: the creatures in heaven: a multitude that no one can count.
Song of the angels: response to the song of the four creatures and twenty-four elders
seven words: divine fulness. Number seven: heavenly number, used by the angels.
Every creature … all creatures on earth.
Four: heaven (sky), earth, under the earth, sea.
Four is earthly number: All the earth (four corneres)
Four words again: blessing, honor, glory, power.
Three songs become one: Angels take over the words of the first song: worthy and slain.
Creatures on earth take over the words of the angels: blessing, honor, glory, power.
Returns to the four living creatures and twenty-four elders: Amen.
Style form: Chiasm:
A. Heavenly throne room with representatives
B. God’s creatures in heaven
B. God’s creatures on earth
A. Throne room in heaven with representatives.
This passage teaches us that our worship does not stand on its own. When we sing our songs for God, we join this entire creation and the angels in heaven in glorifying the Lamb. What does this mean for the quality and the contents of the songs which we sing, both in the worship services and outside of it?