Posted December 24, 2012
12 “Worthy is the Lamb who was slain,to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!”
13 And I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea, and all that is in them, saying,
“To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb
be blessing and honor and glory and might forever and ever!”
Upon initial reading of these verses, you might think that Christmas Eve might not be the most appropriate time to meditate on these verses. Nothing could be further from the truth! Verse 12 begins by telling us, “Worthy is the Lamb who was slain...” Why was the Son of God born two thousand years ago? He was born to be slain for our sins... We cannot separate his birth in a manger in Bethlehem from his death on a cross outside Jerusalem. The little Lamb born in a humble feeding trough was to be the mocked Lamb hanging on a tree only to become the vindicated Lamb worshiped by all of creation! These verses remind us of Christ’s cradle (incarnation), cross, and ultimately his crown (exaltation)...
The verses place us right in midst of the apostle John’s stunning account of heaven (Revelation 4 and 5) as he attempts to describe all its wondrous sights and sounds. In chapter 4, we learn of the activity around the heavenly throne, and overhear God being praised for his holiness and exalted as Creator. In Revelation 5, we learn that worship is directed toward Jesus as Redeemer (the slain Lamb, only One worthy to open the scroll). What is the Lamb that was slain worthy to receive? A sevenfold list in verse 12 tells us:
Verse 13 then documents a fourfold doxology directed to the One who sits on the throne and to the Lamb:
These lists stand as powerful reminders to us that those who see the fullness of God and His work through Christ can do nothing but worship! While our affections and emotions toward God fluctuate, in heaven there’s a steady extravagant expression of worship going on around the clock... If only our heads would be lifted and ears opened to hear their song and join them! While this Christmas is a time of giving & receiving gifts, take intentional time to thank God for giving the costliest gift He could every give: His own Son. Pour out praise on the Lamb who was slain for your sins... If you’re having a hard time thinking about what he’s worthy of, take time to read through the 2 lists! Meditate on the most High God being born in a lowly dirty manger, and then being hung as a criminal on the tree. His is the Name that is above all names (Philippians 2:9-11)! The Lamb who was slain; worthy of our highest praise for ever and ever and ever... For those wanting to study this more, Sam Storms has a helpful study of Revelation 4-5 posted on his website here (http://www.enjoyinggodministries.com/article/real-worship-a-study-of-revelation-4-5-part-i/ and http://www.enjoyinggodministries.com/article/real-worship-a-study-of-revelation-4-5-part-ii/ ). Fighter Verses also posted a powerful blog entitled “The Child Came To Reign” here: http://fighterverses.com/blog-post/the-child-came-to-reign/.
This week’s song was written by Emery Clark (http://emeryjo.blogspot.com/) and produced by her husband Chris, and artwork designed by Ty Carlson (http://www.tywayne.com/), both out of Oklahoma City, OK.