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Revelation blog post 20: Tears in heaven

March 12, 2015

Revelation  5:1-5:

As we continue into the next chapter, we return to the one who is on the throne. The mysterious One with the appearance of jasper and ruby. The God who is beyond all describing.

One more detail we get is that he has hands. For he is holding something in his right hand. A scroll. A scroll which is written on both sides and is well and truly sealed. It may not be easy to open anyway.

But heaven nonetheless is looking for a volunteer to break the seals and look inside.  Not just any angel but a mighty angel bellows a call. But it is not “who is willing to open the scroll?” Or who is strong enough to open the scroll?”

The question is, who is worthy? Who is worthy to take the scroll from the hand of God?  Who is deserving to open the scroll? Who has the status to read the contents and make sense of it all?

We’re told that God loves a volunteer.

But there was no response. No one was able to take the scroll, open it and look inside. Why? Because no one was worthy.

We’re talking heaven here. We’re talking almighty God. We’re talking holiness. How can any mere mortal take in such a task in such a place.

No volunteers. And John felt something of the hopelessness of the situation and wept. Tears of frustration. Desperation. Sadness. Tears of an unworthy man in a place where no one else was found to be worthy.

Now it is one of those 24 elders who speaks. They were the ones who bowed before the throne declaring the worthiness and holiness of God.

Somehow the situation seems hopeless to John. But there is one. He is a lion. The king of the beasts on earth, the lion is a symbol here too of greatness, of royalty.

He is Judah’s lion. He is the lion from the house of King David. He is the King of Israel. And he comes in majesty. He can take the scroll from the hand of God. He can open it and read.

So we look up to see the entering lion.

Like so often in life things feel hopeless but there is one who holds the key, who can make sense of life, who can give it true meaning. We cannot sort things ourselves. We are not worthy to approach God on his throne, but someone else can. He must be worth trusting.

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