Today, Tuesday March 15
The Call to Worship Revelation 4:1-3 “After these things I looked, and behold, a door standing open in heaven. And the first voice which I heard was like a trumpet speaking with me, saying, "Come up here, and I will show you things which must take place after this." Immediately I was in the Spirit; and behold, a throne set in heaven, and One sat on the throne. And He who sat there was like a jasper and a sardius stone in appearance; and there was a rainbow around the throne, in appearance like an emerald.”
The Lord Jesus Himself gives us the divine outline of the book of Revelation in the first chapter when He told John to: “Write the things which you have seen, and the things which are, and the things which will take place after this” (1:19). In chapter one, John wrote and described the vision and experience he had with the Lord Jesus Christ Himself there on the Isle of Patmos. In chapters two and three, John wrote about the “things which are” as he pen the seven letters to the seven literal churches of Asia. Now as we come to chapter four through the end of the book, John writes about the “things which must take place after this” (4:1).
In Revelation 1-3, the word church has occurred again and again, in fact nineteen times. From here on you will not find the word church mentioned. But now the church goes off the air -- there is no mention of it. It has gone off the air because it went up in the air; it was caught up in the air to meet the Lord in the air. (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18) The church has gone to heaven -- that is what has happened to it.
The church is not a name but a definition of those who have trusted Christ in this age. The word church is ekklesia in the Greek; which means "a group of people called out of the world." When the church arrives at its destination in heaven, it loses the name by which it was known in the world and other terms are used to describe it. We are going to see it in chapter 4 as twenty-four elders, representatives of the church in heaven. We are also going to see the church in heaven as a bride, coming down to her new home, the New Jerusalem.
It is my view that the church will be raptured before the seven year tribulation takes place on planet earth. Revelation 4:1 indicates this when John sees a door opened in heaven and he hears a voice calling him to come up! And the first thing John sees is a worship scene in heaven.
True spiritual worship is perhaps one of the greatest needs in our individual lives and in our churches. There is a constant emphasis today on witnessing for Christ and working for Christ, but not enough is said about worshiping Him. To worship means "to ascribe worth" (Rev. 4:11; 5:12). It means to use all that we are and have to praise God for all that He is and does.
Heaven is a place of worship, and God's people shall worship Him throughout all eternity. Perhaps it would be good for us to get in practice now! A study of Revelation 4-5 will certainly help us better understand how to worship God and give Him the glory that He deserves.
Before God pours out His wrath on earth, He gives us a glimpse into glory and permits us to hear the worshiping creatures in heaven as they praise God. Two aspects of their worship are presented for our instruction and imitation. In chapter 4, we find the host of heaven worshiping God as Creator. "You are worthy, O Lord, To receive glory and honor and power; For You created all things, And by Your will they exist and were created." (Revelation 4:11)
In chapter 5, we see the multitudes worshiping the Lamb as Redeemer! “And they sang a new song, saying: "You are worthy to take the scroll, And to open its seals; For You were slain, And have redeemed us to God by Your blood Out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation,” (Revelation 5:9)
God created us to be worshippers! May the Lord help us to fulfill our purpose and worship Him now!