Bible Study-REV-Chapter 4
The Book of Revelation
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The first three chapters focused on this earth and what His “church” had been doing over the past 2000 plus years and He was dissatisfied and angry at how they had been doing His work. Only two of the seven pleased Him and they were Smyrna and Philadelphia.
They were teaching about the Kenites and the Synagogue of Satan, Satan’s church.
In chapters four and five the focus will change from earth to heaven.
Revelation 4:1 After this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter.
Revelation 4:2 And immediately I was in the spirit: and, behold, a throne was set in heaven, and one sat on the throne.
Revelation 4:3 And he that sat was to look upon like a jasper and a sardine stone: and there was a rainbow round about the throne, in sight like unto an emerald.
Revelation 4:4 And round about the throne were four and twenty seats: and upon the seats I saw four and twenty elders sitting, clothed in white raiment; and they had on their heads crowns of gold. KJV
The angel has come again to take John, in his spirit and not in his flesh and blood body. John is presented with an open door through which the angel takes him into heaven and this is what John saw and heard:
The voice of our Father telling John to come closer.
A beautiful throne and our Father sitting on it.
The Shekinah glory of our Father shining round about it in a full circle, not a half circle as does a rainbow here on earth.
Evenly spaced around the Throne were twenty-four seats.
Twenty-four elders or spiritual beings sat on those twenty-four seats.
They wore pure white robes and on each head was a crown of gold.
These are the souls of the twelve Patriarchs, the original heads of the twelve Tribes and the original twelve Apostles. They wear crowns of glory for they have overcome in this life.
The twelve Tribes are: Judah, Reuben, Gad, Asher, Issachar, Joseph, Manasses, Simon, Levi, Zabulon, Benjamin and Naphtali.
The twelve Apostles are: Andrew, Simon Peter, James Zebedee, John Zebedee, Philip, Nathaniel, Matthew Levi, Thomas Didymus, James and Judas Alpheus, Simon the zealot, Judas Iscariot.
Revelation 4:5 And out of the throne proceeded lightnings and thunderings and voices: and there were seven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God.
Revelation 4:6 And before the throne there was a sea of glass like unto crystal: and in the midst of the throne, and round about the throne, were four beasts full of eyes before and behind. KJV
We’ll find out what the seven lamps/Spirits are in the next chapter. The four beasts is a little misleading because they should be properly called living creatures and the eyes before and behind is just symbolism indicating that they could see and watch in a 360 degree circle around each one of them.
These four living creatures are a creation of our Father and they are for His purposes only. It seems, from the Texts, that their only job is to protect the Throne. Protect it from what? You must remember that heaven is still full of souls that have free will…..it’s happened once before, didn’t it?
What a sight this must have been for St. John! He passes, in spirit, through a door that opens up onto heaven itself and the first thing that he sees is our Father, His Throne, the breathtaking aura of the Shekinah glory surrounding Him, twenty-four souls, dressed in white robes with golden crowns and four living creatures.
The sea of glass like unto crystal is also symbology to make you think of purity and sanctity and perfection.
Revelation 4:7 And the first beast was like a lion, and the second beast like a calf, and the third beast had a face as a man, and the fourth beast was like a flying eagle.
Revelation 4:8 And the four beasts had each of them six wings about him; and they were full of eyes within: and they rest not day and night, saying, Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come. KJV
That description puts a whole different light on these four creatures for there is only one other place in the Bible where “six wings” is a part of the description of a beast or living creature and that’s in Isaiah 6:2:
Ref: Isaiah 6:2 Above it stood the seraphims: each one had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly. KJV
With two wings they covered their face; with two wings they covered their feet and with two wings they flew.
Well, we just found out that these living creatures are not some horrible, grotesque animals but angelic beings called seraphims. Their job simply was to guard the Throne of God. Just as a side note, there will be two special cherubims that will sit on either side of the Mercy Seat and guard it as well.
This might be digressing a bit but heaven is not just some mystical place up in the sky. We've been given a pretty good picture already of what a part of heaven looks like. There is structure and hierarchy there. It's not just billions of souls milling around without purpose. We'll find out too that the things in heaven, His Throne and Altar, for instance, have matter to them. They can be felt and touched just as things in this world can be touched. Don't let that throw you...there are many places in Scripture that point this out.
The faces of the four living creatures represents four of the Tribes of Israel. When the Tribes camped at night out in the desert they did so in a specific order:
The Tribe of Dan camped to the north and their banner had the face of an eagle.
The Tribe of Judah camped to the east and their banner had the face of a lion.
The Tribe of Reuben camped to the south and their banner had the face of a man.
The Tribe of Ephraim camped to the west and their banner had the face of an ox. (Calf).
What race was it that our Father chose to create through which His only begotten Son would come? The Hebrew race. The Israelites. Dan, Judah, Reuben and Ephraim camped at the four corners of the compass.
Revelation 4:9 And when those beasts give glory and honour and thanks to him that sat on the throne, who liveth for ever and ever,
Revelation 4:10 The four and twenty elders fall down before him that sat on the throne, and worship him that liveth for ever and ever, and cast their crowns before the throne, saying,
Revelation 4:11 Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.KJV
All of the honor and glory must go to the Father and recognizing this all twenty-four elders placed their crowns of gold at His feet. They may have done His work here on earth but they still knew that they were His servants.
Not a bad picture for John to see, was it? Within our Fathers’ creation these are just a few things that He has allowed us to see; a peek into a world that we can actually become a part of. The Tribe leaders and the Apostles were human beings just like us and although our works will never compare to theirs our Father regards them all equal.
I mentioned earlier that Christ said that if we are a part of bringing just one soul to salvation it will remove a lot of sin from our entry in the Book of Life. That was the job of the Apostles; lead souls to Christ and let the Holy Spirit do the rest. And here the Apostles sit before the Father. We can too if we are a part of His Election and every one can be a part of His Election, we just have to work at it. It’s not free.
The four corners of the compass, the four winds, the four seasons…the number four is related to man and earth and here we have twenty-four (4 x 6) plus four living creatures paying homage to our Creator. Who loves us all very much.
No human being can understand the existence of our Father, it really denies good reason and common sense to even believe that there could exist such an entity. There’s no way to believe except through faith….a belief in things unseen. Sometimes I think that it’s easier for people to believe in Satan than our Father. Maybe it’s because the ways of Satan, in his/this world, are more pronounced and reported on while the miracles of our Father seem to go unnoticed most times.
Maybe you’re a young person, chasing a career, raising kids, trying to get ahead in this life and maybe the only time you have for our Father is an hour or two on Sunday. Don’t waste it on some dead-head preacher in a dead-end church. Why should you end up spiritually dead just because they are?
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19 January 2015