Saturday in the Twenty-First Week of Ordinary Time

Revelation 4:1-6a

Worship in Heaven

I consider chapters four and five the center of the Book of Revelation upon which all else rests.  No doubt, the last few chapters provide the climax for which we all hope, but even those chapters are predicated upon what is taught in these two.  And why is this?  In chapter four, we see our Sovereign God, Lord of history and all creation, worshiped by His creation.  Dominion is His.  All creation serves Him—angels and men—both good and evil.  In chapter five, the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world makes his appearance and his is as awe-inspiring as his Father’s though in a different way.  So yes, chapters four and five provide the foundation for the chapters which came before and those which follow, and I might even add, for the entire Bible.  And so before we go into the specifics of these two chapters, let us make a few points about them.

1) As was already said, they show us that our God reigns over heaven above and earth below.  Nothing is outside His control.  His will and way reign supreme.  He does not simply know all things before they happen; He brings all things to pass.  Daniel 2:44-45 and 7:26-27 were fulfilled with our Lord’s resurrection and ascension, are being fulfilled now in the growth of the Kingdom (Matthew 13:31-33), and await their consummation with our Lord’s return (1:7).

2) Because He is Sovereign God, His saints stand secure in Him.  Though tribulation, persecution, and death will come, they need not fear but stand firm.  They know their God and that He brings His reward.  They are on the winning side.  They have every reason to conquer—which in this case means to persevere unto the end.  Like the martyrs before them, they gladly embrace their tormentors hoping they too follow after them to life eternal.

3) And finally, there is worship in heaven—oh, and what worship!  This worship has ever been since God created angelic beings.  These are the angelic beings in attendance when we go to church on Sunday mornings.  And if I may be so bold, Revelation 4-5 and Isaiah 6:1-8 provide the model for the worship churches should be doing today.  Please note that all the senses are used: sight, sound, smell, touch (prostrations), and later taste.  The word is proclaimed and people respond with praise.  It is liturgical and spontaneous at the same—the people must respond yet do so with full and willing hearts.  To sum: This is the kind of worship that makes martyrs.  Does ours?

Author: The Reformed Baptist

My name is Stephen Taylor, ordained Baptist minister of eighteen years pastoral experience with a Ph.D. in Historical Theology from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas. Better than that, I am married to a godly woman, Karla, who has been very patient with me since 1989. I have two daughters, both of whom I homeschooled for extended periods of time, who became godly young women, and who ran off and married godly young men, all of which is very proper. The oldest daughter has even seen fit to bless me with a grandson and a granddaughter, and my youngest daughter with a grandson, all three of whom are bundles of exceeding joy. As you can see, I am quite blessed. This website is dedicated to helping people grow in the wisdom and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ through the gift of writing that the Lord has given to me. It is specifically about helping His people grow in godliness, the theme you see repeated above. I write devotions with this aim and hope that they might be of some help to God’s people. Full disclosure: I am of a Reformed bent, meaning that my understanding of Scripture is primarily informed by the Reformers and their successors of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. However, as a student of church history and theology, I strive to remain true to that teaching handed down once for all unto the saints through every age of the Church. I like to think of myself as a “catholic” Christian, as the Reformers thought of themselves. At any rate, feel free to read, pray, and contact me if you wish, or correct me if need be. As you can see, I tend to follow the church year. Of course, I make no special claims about these devotions. I know very well that others have written better and plumbed the depths of God’s word with greater insight. But if my musings help someone draw closer to the Lord, well then, I have my reward. Blessings to you and may the God and Father of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ speak to you that word which He knows you especially need to hear. Grace & peace, Stephen Taylor

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