WORSHIP SONG FOUR
After this I looked, and there was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, robed in white, with palm branches in their hands. They cried out in a loud voice, saying,
“Salvation belongs to our God who is seated on the throne, and to the Lamb!”
And all the angels stood around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures, and they fell on their faces before the throne and worshiped God, singing,
“Amen! Blessing and glory and wisdom
and thanksgiving and honor
and power and might
be to our God forever and ever! Amen.”
Then one of the elders addressed me, saying, “Who are these, robed in white, and where have they come from?” I said to him, “Sir, you are the one that knows.” Then he said to me, “These are they who have come out of the great ordeal; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.
For this reason they are before the throne of God,
and worship him day and night within his temple,
and the one who is seated on the throne will shelter them.
They will hunger no more, and thirst no more;
the sun will not strike them,
nor any scorching heat;
for the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd,
and he will guide them to springs of the water of life,
and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.”
See the bottom of this post for how to use this daily devotional
READ ALOUD Revelation 7:9-17
I could not have been more than five or six years old when I first heard the song in our little church assuring us: “It will be worth it all when we see Jesus, life’s trials will seem so small when we see Christ.” (Esther Kerr Rusthoi “When We See Christ”) I sang the song not knowing much of life’s trials at that young age, but the words were embedded in my psyche. It will be worth it all when we see Jesus!
The apostle Paul did suffer many of life’s trials and believed that it would be worth it all. He tells of “imprisonments…countless floggings…lashed five times…three times beaten with rods…stoning…three shipwrecks…many a sleepless night, hungry and thirsty, often without food, cold and naked” (2 Corinthians 11:23-27). Yet in spite of all of this Paul tells us he was assured that it was worth it: “I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory about to be revealed to us” (Romans 8:18). Paul had been caught up into the “third heaven…into Paradise” (2 Corinthians 12:2, 4). He had seen with his own eyes where we will dwell with God and His people.
The apostle John is also caught up into heaven, into the very throne room of God where he sees life’s trials from an eternal perspective. While John writes of things incomprehensible, he does tell us something of which we can be sure. In his first letter he reassures: “What we do know is this: when he is revealed, we will be like him for we will see him as he is” (1 John 3:2). The Apocalypse is the grand revealing of who Jesus really is; we will be made like Him. We will forever share in the life and glory of God. We worship Him for this truth!
In today’s worship song John tells of seeing a “great multitude that no one can count”. This immense, innumerable host of God’s redeemed is singing: “Salvation belongs to our God who is seated on the throne, and to the Lamb!”
What John sees exposes the lie pervading the Roman Empire where Caesar is hailed as the world’s “savior” and “bringer of peace” to the world. The Empire proclaims Caesar’s deeds and victories as the euangellion, the Greek word for “good news” or “gospel”. Ceasar is the kurios or “lord” of the whole world.
In vivid contrast The Revelation reveals that it is really God and the little slaughtered Lamb who bring salvation and peace to the world. Jesus is the reality and the Emperor is the caricature. Around heaven’s throne there is a numberless, countless host from all over the world praising God as Savior. They come “from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages”. And they will be like Him, for they will see Him as He is!
When the great English preacher Charles Spurgeon was young, he wrote the aged preacher Horatius Bonar asking for his picture. The old Bonar replied: “Dear Spurgeon: If you had waited a little, you could have had a better likeness, for soon I shall be like Him.”
Our worship today is a dress rehearsal for heaven where we will join the great multitude in singing praise to the one who sits on the throne and to the Lamb! “Salvation belongs to our God who is seated on the throne, and to the Lamb!”
READ ALOUD Revelation 7:9-17
HOW TO USE THIS DAILY DEVOTIONAL
This daily Lenten devotional takes up eight songs of worship from The Revelation. It is significant that this is the only book in the Bible promising a blessing on those who read it, specifically: “Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of the prophecy” (Revelation 1:3 NRSV). Each section of this devotional presents a song for your audible reading, reflection and worship. Each day you will:
- PRAY asking God to bless this time you devote to Him
- READ ALOUD the worship song and text for the day
- REFLECT on the daily reading
- READ ALOUD again the worship song and text for the day
- WORSHIP God each day in a way that is meaningful for you. The way in which you worship might vary day to day. Depending on the day, you might choose to talk with God about what you are thinking and feeling about the song, or meditate on the worship song, or intercede for others, or sing, or be silent before God. Ask God to guide you.
We pray that God use these worship songs of The Revelation to reveal His glory to you and bless you as you center your life in Him.