Heaven Help Our WorshipThe Worthiness of JesusRevelation 5:6-10INTRODUCTIONWithin the makeup of an organization- what are the characteristics of a person that make them most important to that organization?Iʼm not talking about intrinsic value- people are people - we are all humans - created in the image of God; we share a degree of human equality and common dignity.But within an organization- the Army - a football team - the White House - Any Fortune 500 Company- what makes some people of greater value to that organization than others?- we have to say that is true, because there is always some sort of pecking order.- while everyone is needed - the Vice President of a company is probably worth more to the company bottom line ﬁgures than the data entry clerk - The General has more authority and privilege than the private - The President has more pull than the White House Chef - The Head Coach has the right to yell the loudest at the game
What is it that could make a person worth more to theircompany - more to their organization?Maybe Access?- Though the Vice President of the U.S. is the next in line to become the Chief Executive of the country if something should happen to the President - his access is not as great as that of the Presidentʼs Chief of Staff - who has continual, instant, and at- will access - All in politics say that access is power and the person with the greatest access to the highest levels is worth a lot within the organization of the Executive Branch of our governmentMaybe Attributes? - that is, certain qualities gainedthrough experience- we all value certain attributes - we list them on our resumes- we ask questions about strong points and weak points during job interviews- we look for certain characteristics of an individual that might bring greater value and worth to the company.Maybe Abilities- the speed of the runner - the arm of the quarterback - the bat speed of the batter - the agility of the basketball forward - all effect how valuable a particular player is or could be to a team.Maybe Accomplishments- past actions, deeds - may point to great future actions and future deeds - thus making a person valuable to a certain organization.What makes a person valuable - what makes a personworth something to a greater organization?
Perhaps if you possessed all these qualities to a greatdegree- great access to power, great attributes - great abilities and great accomplishments - you make yourself valuableThese are the very characteristics that make Jesus sovery valuable.How much is Jesus worth?- the estimation is inestimableHow valuable is Jesus Christ?- what gives him the right to judge the world?- what gives him the privilege to say He is the only way of salvation?- What makes him more valuable than anything or anyone else in all the world?That is the question that Revelation 5:6-10 answersfor us.- it shows us 4 qualities that make Him the most worthy in all the universe- it demonstrates four characteristics that describe His value compared to all else that existsRecall what we are talking about in Revelation 4 & 5Revelation 5 is the introduction of Jesus into the scene ofheaven- and this scene of heaven is an introduction to judgmentThis is a section of Revelation that reveals the rightfulplace of Jesus in exercising total authority over allcreation in judgment and ultimately also in redemption.
Here is the introduction of Jesus into the scene ofjudgment and redemption - from the headquarters of allauthority- chapter 4 shows the majestic authority and intense exaltation that exists in heaven.- Chapter 5 reveals the one who is most worthy out of all that exists in that most holy, majestic, authoritative and intense place.Recall - we had seen God the Father - the Holy Spirit andan incredible description of some of the angelic beginsthat surrounded the central piece of furniture in heavenʼsheadquarters - the throne- but no JesusEven in chapter 5 - there is an awesome silence - and agrieving absence of Christ - until v 5All of this is building the tension which will be resolved inthe latter part of chapter 5- where is Christ in all of this divine exaltation and majesty?- Who is it that can take the very plan of God for judgment and redemption and implement it?No one - in heaven, hell or earth- no one, except ChristRemember- chapter 5 is built around a little phrase “And I saw” - it is found 4x in this chapter and it reveals 3 special lessons about Jesus - vv 1-5 - the uniqueness of Jesus - vv 6-10 - the worthiness of Jesus - vv 11-14 - the exaltedness of Jesus
So - we have been asking three questions of thispassage:1 - what makes Jesus undeniably unique? - we saw thisin vv 1-5 last time2 - what makes Jesus uniquely worth? - here we willexamine this in vv 6-103 - what makes Jesus universally exalted? - we will seethis next time in vv 11-14SoI. WHAT MAKES JESUS UNDENIABLY UNIQUE? vv1-5?1 - Godʼs plan v 12 - Creationʼs inability vv 2-43 - Jesusʼ Position - v 5II. WHAT MAKES JESUS UNIQUELY WORTHY? vv6-10Here we will see the four qualities that make Jesusuniquely worthy - unlike anyone else in the entireuniverse.1. Jesusʼ place makes him uniquely worthy v 6aand I saw - marker for the 3rd part of chapter 5between the throne (with the four living creatures)and the elders- LIT reads - “in the midst of the throne and of the 4 living creatures and in the midst of the elders.”- Recall the setting: 4:4 - around the throne - elders- 4:6 - in the midst of the throne and around the throne
- concentric circles around the throne - 1st circle out - the living creatures - yet moving around the throne - a part of the place where the throne actually sits - a second circle outside the throne circle - the 24 elders - Note Jesusʼ place within all of this - in the midst of the throne (but not around it) - adjacent to the throne - yet connected with the very spot of the throne - just inside the circle of the 4 living creaturesWhere is Jesus at this very moment?Revelation 3:21 (ESV)21 The one who conquers, I will grant him to sit with me on mythrone, as I also conquered and sat down with my Father on histhrone.Access is everything - placement means power - accessis powerH.R. Haldeman was the originator of the modern dayChief of Staff to the President of the U.S. - served RichardNixon- never out of immediate touch with Nixon, night and day.- no paper crossed Nixonʼs desk without going through HimHe had the greatest access and was one of the mostimportant men in the White House.It is a similar idea to what we see in heaven with Jesus -His location describes his access to the throne - the
authority of God - an dHis access demonstrates Hispower - and His power reveals His worthiness- Jesus is in the midst of the throne- Note:Revelation 7:9–10 (ESV)A Great Multitude from Every Nation9 After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one couldnumber, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples andlanguages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb,clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, 10 andcrying out with a loud voice, “Salvation belongs to our God who sitson the throne, and to the Lamb!”Revelation 7:17 (ESV)! 17! For the Lamb in the midst of the throne will be theirshepherd, and he will guide them to springs of living water, andGod will wipe away every tear from their eyes.”Revelation 22:1 (ESV)The River of Life22 Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, brightas crystal, ﬂowing from the throne of God and of the LambNot just anyone is able to sit or exist - in the midst of thethrone - this speaks of access - privilege - power - a place of authority - it is the nearest point to the majestic authority of God.Jesusʼ place reveals how worthy He is- there is no one closer to the Father - no one who has greater access to the Father - no one who has as much authority - - with that kind of nearness, access and authority - that makes Jesus ultimately worthy.That would be enough to ascribe ultimate worth to Jesus -his access and place alone - but there is more - not onlythe place of Jesus reveals His worthiness:
2. Jesus Person makes him uniquely worthy v 6bhere we speak of His attributes - His resumeʼ - HischaracteristicsHow could we describe the person of Jesus - in such away that shows His unique worthiness?a. Jesus is the Perfect SacriﬁceAnd I saw . . . a lamb standing, as though it had beenslainNote the contrast- v 5 - the Lion of the tribe of Judah - the root of David - This speaks of might, power, privilege, authority - Lion - David - military majesty and might - Judah, Root - place of privilege and power - fulﬁllment of biblical prophecy - lineage of royalty - Judah - the most faithful of the tribes (i.e., Judges) - David - the most powerful and most celebrated king in all Israeli historyThis is the one the elder tells John - has overcome - andhas the power and authority to take the scroll thatcontains all the judgments of God on earth and willimplement themAnd when Johnʼs eyes catch a glimpse of the Lion of thetribe of Judah - the Root of the Mighty David- what does He see? a lamb. - arnion - could refer to a little lamb
- but by the time John was writing - this term simply referred to a sheep of any age - probably an adult male of a sheep - something like a ʻramʼ - has hornsThis particular term is used exclusively by John- almost 30x John uses this term in his writings - all but one occur in the book of RevelationWhat a shock! - you expect to see the vision of chapter 1- you expect to see a military ruler- you expect to see a royal and majestic ﬁgureAnd you see a lamb - a little sheepYet - this is the term that will describe Jesus throughoutthe book of Revelation - unlike any other term or name - at least 26 times outside of this verse Jesus will be called the Lamb - the lamb is worthy- 5:12 - sits with the Father on the throne 5:13; 7:9, 10 - Breaks the 7 seals of the scroll 6:1 - Unleashes His wrath on the earth - 6:16 - Cleanses those who have been martyred in the great tribulation with his own blood - 7:14 - Is the shepherd of His people - 7:17 - Provides the means for saints to overcome in the Tribulation through His blood - 12:11 - The book that contains the names of all the saved and redeemed - is the Lambʼs Book of life - 13:8 - His name is on the forehead of the 144,000 - 14:1 - The beast - will be tormented in the Lambʼs presence - 14:10
- The victorious martyred saints wills ing the song of the lamb - 15:3 - The lamb is the object of Satanʼs wrath - 17:14 - the lamb will host a marriage supper - the saints will partake in 19:7, 9; 21:9 - the 12 apostles are the apostles of the Lamb 21:14 - The Lamb with God are the temple of the New Jerusalem 21:22 - The Lamb is the light of the new Jerusalem 21:23 - The water of life comes from the Lamb 22:1Why a lamb?Exodus 12 - the Passover Lamb - slaughtered- Jesus is that ﬁnal lamb - slaughtered once for allIsaiah 53:7 (ESV)He was oppressed, and he was afﬂicted, yet he opened not hismouth; like a lamb that is led to the slaughter, and like a sheepthat before its shearers is silent, so he opened not his mouth.John 1:29 (ESV)Behold, the Lamb of God29The next day he saw Jesus coming toward him, and said,“Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of theworld!John 1:36 (ESV)36 and he looked at Jesus as he walked by and said, “Behold, theLamb of God!”1 Corinthians 5:7 (ESV)7 Cleanse out the old leaven that you may be a new lump, as youreally are unleavened. For Christ, our Passover lamb, has beensacriﬁced.1 Peter 1:19 (ESV)19 but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lambwithout blemish or spot.
Hebrews 10:11-18 - Jesus is the ﬁnal sacriﬁceThat is why he was shown to John not merely as a lamb - but one “as slaughtered” - a strong word - implying violence and force - Perfect tense - having been slaughtered and remains to this moment with a look of having been slaughteredBut note - not dead - not a lifeless lamb- but “standing” - a demonstration of the ResurrectionWhy is Jesus worthy? - because of His person- and who is He - the Perfect Sacriﬁce for Sin1 Timothy 2:5 (ESV)5 For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God andmen, the man Christ Jesus,1 Peter 3:18 (ESV)18 For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for theunrighteous, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in theﬂesh but made alive in the spirit,Acceptable to God - perfect for mankind- he is worthy, because He is the perfect sacriﬁceb. Jesus Has Perfect Powerwith seven hornsIn Revelation - horns refer to authority or power -kingdoms- 13:1, 11; 17:3, 7, 12The same is true in the Old Testament- especially in Daniel - Daniel 7:7-8, 20, 24; 8:3, 20, 22 - and Zechariah 1:18-21
7 horns - 7 being the number representing somethingcomplete and full - ﬁnished - ﬁnalThus - the Lamb with 7 horns - a Lamb with total authority- power - rule - complete power and mightc. Jesus Has Perfect Knowledgewith seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of Godsent out into all the earthHere is another reference to the Holy Spirit - 1:4; 3:1;4:5; 5:6Described in Zechariah 4:1-10- Jesus - connected to the father through the Throne- Jesus connected to the Spirit through the 7 eyesReferring to complete knowledge of all that goes on in theearth.What makes Jesus worthy? - His person- perfect sacriﬁce - perfect power - perfect knowledge3. Jesusʼ Privilege makes him uniquely worthy v 7Here is Jesusʼ ability- what He alone is capable of doingRemember 5:2-4 - recall what the scroll is - Godʼs plan forthe future - judgment and redemptionRecall what it means to take it out of Godʼs right hand -implies ability and worthinessRecall what it means to open - to implement and enactwhat is in the scroll
Out of everything and everyone in the entire creation - noone was “worthy”- and Jesus displays His worthiness to all the universe- Jesus - in the midst of the throne - reaches over to the hand of the Father and takes the scrollThat is the place of ultimate privilege - ultimate abilityAnd note what happens when Jesus takes that scroll- assumes his place as the sovereign judge over all the earth- takes his position as the one who will take back the earth from sin and Satan and restore everything under the rightful rule of the AlmightyWhat happens next reveals a fourth reason why jesus isuniquely worthy4. Jesusʼ praise makes him uniquely worthy vv 8-10Here are Jesusʼ accomplishmentsWhen Jesus takes the scroll - look at the response inHeaven - and in fact, over all the earthExuberant and enthusiastic praise erupts - like anearthquake with shock waves circling out from the throneitself4 living creatures - 24 elders v8 - v 11 - all creationBut notice how the praise of Jesus makes Him uniquelyworthy- worth more than all the rest of creationa. Jesus is the object of angelic worship v 8a
the four living creatures and the twenty-four eldersfell down before the Lamb- here is the normal posture for worship - absolute humility- no one is worthy to stay on their feet - only in a position of submission and humble surrender - 7:11; 11:16; 19:4- NOTICE - they take the same position of worship as they did before the Father - when John fell down before an angel to worship - he was rebuked - 19:10; 22:8, 9 - only God deserves such a responseeach holding a harp- the kithara - a stringed instrument - all the strings are the same length - probably around 10 inches longThese are the instruments of worship and praise in thePsalmsPsalm 32:2 (ESV)! 2! Blessed is the man against whom the Lord counts noiniquity, and in whose spirit there is no deceit.Psalm 43:4 (ESV)! 4! Then I will go to the altar of God,to God my exceeding joy, and I will praise you with the lyre, O God,my God.Psalm 71:22 (ESV)! 22! I will also praise you with the harpfor your faithfulness, O my God; I will sing praises to you with thelyre, O Holy One of Israel.Psalm 98:4 (ESV)! 4! Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth; breakforth into joyous song and sing praises!
Psalm 150:3 (ESV)! 3! Praise him with trumpet sound; praise him with luteand harp!The ancient guitar - would be strummed - also called alyreIt was the instrument David played - 1 Sam 16:16- would bring an attitude of joy to the worship of GodNotice - the instrumental orchestra of heaven begins -primarily by the 24 eldersJesus is the object of angelic worship- those whose minds are not clouded by sin - who see the presence of God and worship God day in and day out - worship Christ with exuberance and joyb. Jesus is the vindicator of the saintsʼ sufferingand golden bowls full of incense, which are theprayers of the saintsbowls - like what was used in the temple to burn incenseto God- a wide mouth, shallow bowl - like a saucerFull of incense - sweet smelling spices that were burned -the smoke lifted upWithin the temple - an altar of incense - represented theprayers of the saints being lifted to GodPsalm 141:2 (ESV)! 2! Let my prayer be counted as incense before you, andthe lifting up of my hands as the evening sacriﬁce!
Luke 1:10 (ESV)10 And the whole multitude of the people were praying outside at thehour of incense.But here - the prayers of the saints are much more thanmerely general prayers being offered6:9-11; 8:3ffThese are prayers of vindication by the saints - Godvindicates the blood of those who lost their lives for youThe prayers of martyrs for martyrs - the prayers of thosein heaven - for those who suffer persecution on earthHere these prayers are being lifted up continually - by theelders - who represent those who God has redeemedthrough all the ages - and Jesus talking the scroll, means their long offered prayers will now ﬁnally be answered - and Godʼs name and their blood will be avenged.The saints - in Revelation - primarily refers - not to thechurch speciﬁcally - but those who suffer on the earth,during what Revelation calls the Great TribulationBut here before the Tribulation begins, are the prayers ofsaints already in Glory - praying for those who have andwill suffer - OT and NT believers - possibly those who have arrived in heaven due to persecutionWhat makes Jesus uniquely worthy - His praise - thefulﬁllment of all the prayers of the saints for thepersecution they have endured and the way Gods namehas been profanedc. Jesus is the Purchaser of Mankindʼs salvation v 9
And they sang a new song- not a new song - like newly written - written yesterday- but a new type of song - a new kind of song- not a song of praise - anticipating the Messiah to reign- but a new song - a song that now acknowledges the full Reign of Jesus Christ and the complete overthrow of all his enemiesMentioned often in the Psalms - Ps 40:3; 96:1; 98:1;144:9; 149:1; Isaiah 42:10- refers to a song of salvation- a new kind of song - different than the songs of unforgiven lost humanity- new song sung by new peopleGoes along with all that will become new- Rev 2:17 - new name- 3:12 - New Jerusalem- 21:1 - new heaven- 21:2 - New Jerusalem- 21:5 - behold I am making all things newAnd now they sing His praise and exalt His worthiness- and note why - - you ransomed - lit - purchased or bought1 Corinthians 6:20 (ESV)20 for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.1 Corinthians 7:23 (ESV)23 You were bought with a price; do not become slaves of men.Notice the price for this purchase - with your own bloodfrom every tribe and language and people and nation- not every individual - but some from within every type of person
people from different descents or clanpeople who speak different languagespeople from different ethnicitiespeople from different political entity - not just republicans -not just democrats - not just Americans who live indemocracyBUT- some who live in dictatorships- some who under communism- some who live under absolute monarchiesSome from all of theseHeaven will not be all white southern born people - ormiddle class - it will be ﬁlled with every race, every language, every people group, dialect and nationality.Note - no one else in all the world receives this kind ofpraise - because no one else has paid this kind of price to bring all kinds of people together as one united people of Godd. Jesus is the producer of believersʼ victory v 10The result of his purchasing them - future reign with Christ upon the earthDaniel 7:22 (ESV)22 until the Ancient of Days came, and judgment was given for thesaints of the Most High, and the time came when the saintspossessed the kingdom.Daniel 7:27 (ESV)! 27! And the kingdom and the dominionand the greatness of the kingdoms under the whole heaven
shall be given to the people of the saints of the Most High; theirkingdom shall be an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions shallserve and obey them.ʼRevelation 1:6 (ESV)6 and made us a kingdom, priests to his God and Father, to him beglory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.Revelation 20:6 (ESV)6 Blessed and holy is the one who shares in the ﬁrst resurrection!Over such the second death has no power, but they will be priestsof God and of Christ, and they will reign with him for a thousandyears.Kingdom and priests- there will be a priestly role of believers in the millennial kingdom - offering up sacriﬁces of praise and thanksgiving to God in honor of His nameCONCLUSIONJesusʼ place, person, privilege and praise- all show how worthy He is- how much he is worth- how valuable he isand no one is like Him- and no one deserves greater obedience and love and adorationHow signiﬁcantly have we thought about Jesus today inour gathering?How often do you sit to signiﬁcantly pray through - thinkabout the implications of the person, attributes,accomplishments, details of the person of Jesus Christ?
Often our worship services have so neutered theimmensity and depth of Jesusʼ accomplishments byspeaking of Him in general and undeﬁned terms.- precious words like “Savior” “Lord” “Master” “Redeemer” “Lamb” “Son of God” - all need to be unpacked - meditated upon - deepened in our contemplation ofOur songs should not merely an emotional outlet to singabout the generalities of Jesus, but a stimulation tochallenge our intellect and deepen our emotionalresponses to the depths of what Jesus has done and whoHe is.Our prayers should reﬂect a thorough, personal, profoundcontemplation and understanding of the sufﬁciency of theperson of Jesus.- no wonder the church is continually giving way to the false premises of psychological evaluations of peopleʼs problems - when we think about Jesus in no more signiﬁcant terms than a future ticket to heaven - when we think about the gospel and the work on the cross as simply what grants forgiveness, but not necessarily the central answer to every issue of lifeOur gatherings should we a weekly expansion of ourideas of who Christ is- a constant challenge to how we are responding to the multi-faceted nature of what He has done- a continual deepening of our trust in His sufﬁciency for every area of life - every issue of our past - every detail of our future. We must view Jesus as uniquely worthy.