In Revelation 2 and 3, John has just witnessed a character picture of the grace that Jesus offered to His church in every age to the end of time. In chapter 4, John sees an open door into heaven and hears the voice of Jesus, like a trumpet, beckoning him into the heavenly sanctuary. John in vision views what is taking place. He sees all heaven waiting for Jesus to return to heaven after His resurrection, for His inauguration as our High Priest and King of the heavenly sanctuary, to anoint it for the divine ministry to save all those who have and will come to God through Him.
The first of Revelation’s eight throne-room scenes is described by John as he sees the Father seated on the throne, reflecting the jasper and sardine stones which represent the character of His Son, whose recent sacrifice made possible the remission of sins. The green in the rainbow that encircles the throne represents hope, and the red expresses the blood of the sacrifice of divine love for us.
Encircling the throne are twenty-four elders, seven lamps before the throne representing the fullness of the Spirit, and the four living beings who give glory, honor, and praise to the Father on the throne. They acknowledge Him as their Creator, the One who created all things by His will.
The seven lamps before the throne symbolize the Holy Spirit in totality, standing ready to encompass the world. The four living angelic beings reflect most closely the human characteristics of Jesus as portrayed in the four Gospels. The Lion of the tribe of Judah represents Him as the fulfillment of all the Old Testament prophecies (Matthew). The Ox represents Jesus in His sacrificial role and in His patient toiling servant life (Mark). The Man represents Jesus in His humanity (Luke). And the Eagle represents Jesus soaring heavenward (John). These characteristics of Jesus will also be reflected in the people that make up His church.
At the sight of this glorious scene, with all Heaven waiting to inaugurate Jesus as High Priest and the King of the Universe; the beings around the throne fall prostrate and cast their crowns before God, and exclaim that He is worthy to receive glory, honor, and power, for He created all things. They understand that humankind was created for fellowship with Him.
Will you not now, by faith, enter Heaven’s Throne Room, fall down before your Maker and give Him honor, glory, and worship for creating you and redeeming you?
Kenneth Mathews, Jr. M.D.
Physician, Occupational Medicine
Greeneville, TN, U.S.A.