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Revelation 5:8-14
Worthy is the Lamb that was slain
By Brother Mike (10-15-19; 45 minutes)
   

8 And when he had taken the book, the four beasts and 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 saints .
9 And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou was slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation ;
10 And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth .
11 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 ;  
12 Saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honor, and glory, and blessing .
13 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 honor, and glory, and power, [be] unto him that sits upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever
14 And the four beasts said, Amen. And the four [and] twenty elders fell down and worshipped him that lives for ever and ever .


INTRODUCTION   

Worthy is the Lamb that was slain is the theme of this study. It begins in Revelation 5:8 where we read of the following about the Lamb that was slain: And when he had taken the book, the four beasts and 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 saints . And, with respect to this verse, we ask, who are the four beasts and the 24 elders which fell down before the Lamb? And, what do their harps and golden vials full of odors symbolize? The answers to these questions and more we will find in this study. 

Then, we read in verses 9-10 that the four beasts and 24 elders sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou was slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy 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 . And, with respect to these verses, we ask, what do the beasts and 24 elders mean when they say that the Lamb is worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof? And, explain why the Lamb is worthy to bring about God's salvation plan. And, when verse 10 states that the beasts and the 24 elders shall reign on the earth, when will this be? The answers to these questions and more we will find in this study. 

Now, the apostle John says in verses 11-12, 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 honor, and glory, and blessing . And we ask, why are the number of angels, beasts, and elders around about the throne said to be ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands? And, why do they say with a loud voice that the Lamb who was slain is worthy to receive seven things: power, riches, wisdom, strength, honor, glory, and blessing? The answers to these questions and more we will find in this study. 

Then, finally, verses 13-14 read, 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 honor, and glory, and power, [be] unto him that sits 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 lives forever and ever . And, with respect to these two verses, we ask, why does every creature ascribe just four things (blessing, honor, glory, and power) to God and the Lamb? And, after every creature ascribes blessing, honor, glory, and power to God and the Lamb, why do the four beasts say, amen? The answers to these questions and more we will find in this study.  

Now, may our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lamb that was slain, who is worthy to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honor, and glory, and blessing because He has redeemed us to God by His own blood bless this message to set our minds on things above, amen.


Revelation 5:8

8 And when he had taken the book, the four beasts and 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 saints .  

In this verse, we first read, And when He had taken the book (more literally, the scroll). He who had taken the scroll out of the right hand of God, of course, is the lamb that was slain, and the Lamb that was slain we already learned was the 2nd person of the Godhead who was made flesh in Mary at His conception in 7 BC as Jesus Christ, and who was slain for the sins of His elect on the cross in 33 AD. It was this Lamb, the Lord Jesus Christ, who when He had taken the scroll of God's salvation plan from God, we read that the four beasts, which we previously learned represent God, and the 24 elders, who we previously learned represent the elect in heaven, fell down before the Lamb. That is, God and the elect in heaven fell down before the Lord Jesus Christ. So, we have God worshipping Jesus Christ; God worshipping God in heaven, and, we wonder, what kind of God worships Himself? Imagine if one of us worshipped his or her self, we would be considered an egotistical lunatic, but when Jesus worships Himself in heaven, He is not a lunatic, but He is eternal God who so deserves worship for all that He is, and for all that He has done, that He even deserves worship from Himself, and so we see God worshipping Jesus; God worshipping God in heaven. He is so great and mighty that no one can be considered greater and mightier than He, so He can worship no one else than Himself. Only He is all mighty, only He is all perfect, only He is all holy, indeed, only He is God. Therefore, only He should be worshipped, and only He can legitimately worship Himself. Anyone else who worships his or herself is a delusional lunatic, but God who worships Himself is as sane as they come, for He is truly worthy of all worship and praise, even from Himself.  

Now, we are told that the four beasts, namely God, and the 24 elders, namely all the elect in heaven, that fell down before the Lamb, Jesus, have every one of them harps. In the Bible, harps are associated with prophesying or singing praise and thanksgiving unto the Lord. For instance, we read in 1Chronicles 25,  

1Ch 25:3 Of Jeduthun: the sons of Jeduthun; Gedaliah, and Zeri, and Jeshaiah, Hashabiah, and Mattithiah, six, under the hands of their father Jeduthun, who prophesied with a harp, to give thanks and to praise the LORD

And, again, we read in Psalm 33,  

Ps 33:2 Praise the LORD with harp: sing unto him with the psaltery and an instrument of ten strings

And, again,   

Ps 71:22 I will also praise thee with the psaltery, even thy truth, O my God: unto thee will I sing with the harp, O thou Holy One of Israel .   

And, 

Ps 98:5 Sing unto the LORD with the harp; with the harp, and the voice of a psalm

And, again,  

Ps 147:7 Sing unto the LORD with thanksgiving; sing praise upon the harp unto our God . And,
Ps 149:3 Let them praise his name in the dance: let them sing praises unto him with the timbrel and harp . And, 
Ps 150:3 Praise him with the sound of the trumpet: praise him with the psaltery and harp

Thus, we see that the harp must do with prophesying or singing praise and thanksgiving unto the Lord. And, in the context of our verse where both God and the elect in heaven are said to have harps means that both God and the elect in heaven are prophesying or singing praise and thanksgiving unto the Lord. Yes, God is prophesying or singing praise to the Lamb, the Lord Jesus Christ who Himself is God, so we have God singing praises to Himself in heaven. And, again, for us to sing praises to ourselves would make us egotistical lunatics, but for God to sing praise unto Himself is perfectly okay, for there is no one else worthy of all praise; there is no one else higher to be praised; He is the one and only true God so that for Him to sing praise to Himself is not egotistical lunacy, but praise that is due. He is not only due praise from the elect who are in heaven, but He is due praise from Himself as well. 

But, not only are we told that God and the elect in heaven who both fell down before Jesus have harps by which to prophesy or sing praise and thanksgiving unto the Lord, but we are told that they have golden vials full of odors [full of incense], and we are told that the incense in these golden vials are the prayers of the Saints.   

But, let's first consider the golden vials. What do these golden vials represent? When we look up the term, golden vials, we find that it is only found in the book of Revelation; primarily in chapter 16, which is a chapter describing God's spiritual wrath being poured out on the world ever since May 21, 2011. And, each place golden vials is found, the vial, or we could translate it, bowl, is the container from which the wrath of God is poured out. Thus, the golden vials or bowls must do with the wrath or judgment of God. And, because these vials or bowls are gold in color, and gold is commonly known to symbolize purity or holiness in the Bible, these golden vials or bowls represent the pure or holy wrath or judgment of God. 

But, then, we must ask, what does the holy wrath or judgment of God have to do with incense? And, in response, we must conclude that the holy wrath or judgment of God has to do with incense in that the incense is the prayers of the Saints which fill the golden vials, which symbolize the holy wrath of God. That is, the prayers of the Saints are what bring about the Holy wrath or judgments of God. Thus, the golden vials full of incense are symbolism revealing that the prayers of the Saints are what bring about the holy or pure wrath or judgments of God on this world. In other words, the Saints, or we could say, the elect, are greatly involved in the judgments which God brings upon this world as these judgments come about through the prayers of God's elect who are the Saints. Later in our study of Revelation, we will also find that the elect are even literally used to bring God's spiritual judgments upon the world as they prophesy against the Church and the world.  


Revelation 5:9

9 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 thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation . . . 

Here, we first read, And they sung a new song. Literally, it reads, And they are singing a new song. The they who are singing refers to the four beasts and the 24 elders who symbolize God and the elect, respectively, who are in heaven. So, it is God and the elect in heaven who are singing a new song, and, in their song, we are told that they are saying the following to the Lamb, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation. Notice how it is the Lamb who is said to be worthy to take the book and open the seals thereof. That is, it is Christ who is said to be worthy to bring about God's salvation plan because He was slain and has redeemed us by His blood. That is, we are being told that Christ has redeemed both God and the elect by His blood. So, not only were the elect redeemed by the shed blood of Jesus Christ, but so also was God Himself. And, when we realize that Jesus Christ is God, we can begin to understand how God, Jesus Christ, was redeemed. He was redeemed from eternal death when God would not leave His soul in hell; nor let His body see corruption in the grave as we read in Psalm 16,  

Ps 16:10 For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption .  

Thus, we have a picture of God redeeming God, and, not only this, but God singing to God and saying, for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation.  

But, how can God say that He was redeemed out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation? First, since the four categories, kindred, tongue, people, and nation symbolize every kindred, tongue, people, and nation worldwide because the number 4 symbolizes universality or worldwideness (see Bible Number 4 ), God is saying that He was redeemed out of every kindred, tongue, people, and nation worldwide. But, now, how can God have come out from every kindred, tongue, people, and nation worldwide? Well, we begin to be able to answer when we read in Matthew 25:40,  

40 Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me .

In other words, God is saying that He is so identified with His elect that if you do something to them, you have done it to God Himself. So, since God's elect were redeemed out of every kindred, tongue, people, and nation worldwide, so was God so redeemed because God is so closely identified with His people that if His people were redeemed out of every nation worldwide, then so was He. Yes, God has redeemed God out of every kindred, tongue, people, and nation worldwide because that is from where His elect were redeemed. Remember also, scripture teaches that we, the elect, are God's very own body as we read in Ephesians 5:30,   

30 For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones .  

And, so, since we were redeemed out from every kindred, tongue, people, and nation worldwide, so was God so redeemed in the person of Jesus Christ, for we are His body redeemed from every kindred, tongue, people, and nation worldwide.  


Revelation 5:10
:  

10 And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth .   

In this verse, we continue with the new song sang by God and the elect in heaven, and God and the elect say to the Lamb, And you have made us unto our God kings and priests. So, not only did the Lamb, Christ, make God in Christ a king and priest, but He also made the elect in heaven both kings and priests unto God. Remember, we learned that Christ made the elect both kings and priests back in Revelation 1:6. We know that God was made a king in Christ when He had risen from the dead in Christ and then ascended into heaven in Christ to be seated at His own right hand. We read in Ephesians 1, 

19 And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power ,
20 Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places
21 Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come :
22 And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church
23 Which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all .  

And, again, we read,  

1Pe 3:22 Who [Christ] is gone into heaven, and is on the right hand of God; angels and authorities and powers being made subject unto him .   

Furthermore, we read in Ephesians 2:4 that the elect in heaven had been seated together with Christ in heaven to rule when they were spiritually saved while on earth, 

Eph 2:4 But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us ,
5 Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened [saved] us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;
6 And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus :
7
That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus .  

Thus, we see that God in Christ with the elect in heaven rule as kings. In this world, we rule as kings spiritually as we are ambassadors for Christ to bring His Word to the world. Yet, we are not only kings, but we are priests also as we make intercession for God's elect and give our very lives as a sacrifice to God in obedience to His Word. 

Now, finally, our verse concludes by saying, And we shall [future tense] reign on earth. Here, the we who shall reign on earth are God and the elect. That is, God with the elect will rule in the new heaven and earth to be created on the Last Day, but just who or what we will be reigning over remains to be seen. No, we will not reign with Christ in some earthly millennial kingdom yet to be manifest on this earth as many of the churches now teach, but we will reign with Christ in the new heaven and on the new earth after this earth is destroyed, and a new earth is created on the Last Day.  


Revelation 5:11
:  

11 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 . . .  

Here, the apostle John sees round about the throne in heaven a picture of an innumerable number of angels, and the beasts, which are the four living creatures whom we concluded picture God, and the elders whom we learned picture all the elect in heaven. Thus, John sees and hears many angels, and God, and the elect in heaven round about the throne, and we are told that the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands. Literally, it reads, ten thousand of tens of thousands, and thousands of thousands. Since the number 10,000 and 1,000 are each a factor of 10, and the number 10 in the Bible symbolizes the completeness of whatever is in view (see Bible Number 10 ), this number of angels and the elect is symbolic of the completeness of all the angels and the elect that are in heaven, which are obviously more than the apostle John could count; hence, the expression ten thousand of tens of thousands, and thousands of thousands

We see a similar picture of the angels and elect round about the throne in heaven in Daniel 7 as God sits in judgment. There we read,  

9 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 wool: his throne was like the fiery flame, and his wheels as burning fire .
10 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 .  

Notice how we see the same ten thousand of tens of thousands, and thousands of thousands that we saw round about the throne in our verse in Revelation 5. These multitudes consist of the completeness of all the angels and the completeness of all the elect.  


Revelation 5:12
:  

12 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 .  

In this verse, we have the completeness of all the multitude of angels, and the elect, as well as God Himself who are round about the throne, all saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honor, and glory, and blessing. Once again, the focus of praise is on the Lamb, Jesus Christ, who is worthy because He was slain in the place of all His elect to pay for their sins, and because of this, He is praised by all the completeness of angels and the elect in heaven as well as God Himself. 

We should take notice that the Lamb is praised to be worthy of seven things: power, riches, wisdom, strength, honor, glory, and blessing. Why seven things? When we realize that the number 7 in the Bible is symbolic of the perfection of whatever is in view (see Bible Number 7 ), then we know that God is teaching us that the Lamb is worthy of the perfection of all these things. He is worthy of the perfection of power, riches, wisdom, strength, honor, glory, and blessing. He is worthy of the perfection of power because He is all powerful. He is worthy of the perfection of riches because He created and owns everything. He is worthy of the perfection of wisdom because He is all wise. He is worthy of the perfection of strength because He is almighty. He is worthy of the perfection of honor because He is all honorable. He is worthy of the perfection of glory because He is all glorious. And, He is worthy of the perfection of blessing because He is all blessed. 


Revelation 5:13
:  

13 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 .  

Here, the apostle John sees all creatures everywhere saying, Blessing, and honor, and glory, and power, be unto Him that sits upon the throne, and unto the Lamb forever and ever. That is, all creatures everywhere are saying to God and Christ, Blessing, and honor, and glory, and power be unto you forever and ever.  

But, does this mean that all creatures are praising God and Christ with their literal tongues? Of course not! For most creatures cannot even speak; nor do they have tongues. No, rather, because all creatures were created by God, and, so, in some way and to some degree are a reflection of who God is, they naturally shine forth blessing, and honor, and glory, and power back to God by their just having been created by Him. Remember what we read in Romans 1, 

Ro 1:20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse . . .  

Thus, we see that the creation, including every creature, naturally shines forth the attributes of God so that in this way, every creature is naturally revealing, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, unto him that sitteth upon the throne, [namely God], and unto the Lamb, [namely Christ], for ever and ever

Now, we should take notice that every creature is reflecting or saying four things to God and to Christ: blessing, honor, glory, and power. The number 4 in the Bible symbolizes the universality of whatever is in view (see Bible Number 4 ). So, when our verse says that the apostle John heard every creature saying, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him [God] that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb [Christ] forever and ever, it means that every creature everywhere [universally] is saying these things to God and to Christ. Indeed, wherever a creature exists, it is automatically and naturally giving blessing, honor, glory, and power to God whether it be conscious of it or not, for it reflects the blessing, honor, glory, and power of God from which they were created.  


Revelation 5:14
:  

14 And the four beasts said, Amen. And the four and twenty elders fell down and worshipped him that liveth for ever and ever .  

In this final verse, after the multitude of angels in heaven, and the beasts (the living creatures), which picture God, and the elders, which picture the elect in heaven, and every creature everywhere finish giving praise unto to God and to Christ, we read that the four beasts, said, Amen. And the four and twenty elders fell down and worshipped him that liveth for ever and ever. As we previously learned, the four beast [better translated as four living creatures] represent God Himself, and the 24 elders represent all the elect in heaven. So, when our verse says, And the four beasts said, Amen, it is God who said, Amen, and amen means truly, this is true, or so be it. And, when our verse says, And the 24 elders fell down and worshipped Him that lives forever and ever, it is all the elect in heaven who fell down and worshipped Him that lives forever and ever. 


SUMMARY & CONCLUSION  

We began our study in Revelation 5:8 where we read the following about the Lamb that was slain: And when he had taken the book, the four beasts and 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 saints . And, with respect to this verse, we found that the four beasts are better translated as four living creatures, and we found that these four living creatures symbolize God Himself. On the other hand, the 24 elders symbolize the elect who are in heaven. And, so, we are being told that when the Lamb that was slain had taken the book of God's salvation plan, God and the elect in heaven fell down before the Lamb in worship of Him. Furthermore, we learned that the harps that God and the elect have in heaven symbolize their singing or prophesying of praise and thanksgiving to the Lamb that was slain, namely Jesus Christ, and the golden vials full of odors that they have symbolize the prayers of the saints that are used to bring God's spiritual judgment or wrath against the world, which we now know to have begun on May 21, 2011. 

Then, we read in verses 9-10 that the four beasts, namely God and the 24 elders, namely the elect in heaven, sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof : for thou was slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy 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 . And, with respect to these verses, we learned that when God and the elect in heaven sang a new song, saying to the Lamb, you are worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof, they meant that the Lamb was worthy to bring about God's salvation plan. And, we learned that the Lamb was worthy to bring about God's salvation plan because He was slain and had redeemed God and the elect to God by His blood. In addition, the Lamb was also worthy to bring about God's salvation plan because He made both God and the elect in heaven kings and priest who will reign fully not on this earth, but on the new earth to be created from the ashes of this earth when this earth is destroyed and a new earth is created on the Last Day.  

Now, the apostle John said in verses 11-12, 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 honor, and glory, and blessing . Here, we learned that the number of angels, beasts, namely God, and elders, namely the elect, around about the throne was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands. This simply meant that the completeness of all the angels, God, and all the elect were round about the throne in heaven. And, then, we learned that the angels, God, and the elect in heaven were all saying with a loud voice, worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive seven things, which number 7 meant that the lamb that was slain was worthy to receive the perfection of these seven things, which was the perfection of power because He was all powerful, the perfection of riches because He created and owns all things, the perfection of wisdom because He is all wise, the perfection of strength because He is all strong, the perfection of honor because He is all honorable, and the perfection of glory because He is all glorious, and the perfection of blessing because He is all blessed.   

Then, finally, verses 13-14 of Revelation 5 read, 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 honor, and glory, and power, [be] unto him that sits 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 lives forever and ever . And, with respect to these two verses, we asked, why does every creature only ascribe four things (blessing, honor, glory, and power) to God and the Lamb? Well, we learned that the number 4 symbolizes universality so that these things (blessing, honor, glory, and power) are being ascribed to God and the Lamb universally; that is, by every creature everywhere. And, when every creature everywhere ascribes blessing, honor, glory, and power to God and the Lamb, the four beasts who symbolize God say, amen, which means this is true, or so be it. Yes, that every creature everywhere ascribes blessing, honor, glory, and power to God and the Lamb, Jesus Christ, God says, is true and right, so be it, amen.  


Now, with that, may the LORD bless thee, and keep thee: The LORD make his face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee: The LORD lift up his countenance upon thee, and give thee peace .

3:7-13
3:14-22  
4:1-5
4:6-11 
5:1-7
5:8-14

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