Author: Ron Graham

Book of Revelation

Songs of Heaven
—Revelation 5:8-14

The Revelation of Christ (Revelation 1-5) >Seven Scenes in Heaven >Scenes 5,6,7 >The Songs

We continue to study the second vision in the book of Revelation, consisting of seven scenes in heaven. Now we come to scenes 5-7, found in chapter five. Each of these is a song.

1 Song of the Creatures and Elders

Fell down before the Lamb The four living creatures and the 24 elders fall down to worship the Lamb. He was worthy to die for the sins of the world, worthy to open the scroll, and is worthy to be worshipped. The Lamb is about to receive the same accolade as the Father, "Worthy art Thou" (Revelation 4:10-11, Revelation 5:8-9).

A harp and golden bowls The bowls of incense are explained. They represent "the prayers of the saints". The harps therefore must represent the songs of the saints. In Christian worship we do not use the symbols themselves, but what they represent. We do not use bowls of incense, rather we offer prayers. Likewise, we do not worship with harps or other musical instruments, rather we sing praises.

A new song This is a new song, an anthem not for one nation but for all the earth, for "every tribe and tongue and people and nation". This is a new song to mark a new way of salvation made possible by the Lamb of God. This song in heaven proclaims the same gospel that is written in the scroll and delivered by the seven spirits (the Holy Spirit) to all the earth.

Reign upon the earth In Revelation 20:6 this "reign upon the earth" is represented as a "reign with Christ". Here is an important question: Where is Christ during this reign? Many say "on earth" but the Book of Revelation says he is in Heaven (Revelation 3:21).

Take special note

There is no reason why we cannot reign "with Christ" while we are on earth and he is in Heaven. Though he is in heaven, he is able to be present with us and we with him (Revelation 3:20).

Even where a vision scene may depict Christ as on earth, this only represents that abiding presence of Christ with us even though he has ascended into heaven. He is our ruling king and interceding priest in heaven. He was once on earth. Now he is forever in heaven, and so soon shall we be, after our reign on earth with him is finished.

We say with Paul, "Christ lives in me, and the life that I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me" (Galatians 2:20-21).

2 Song of the Angels

Angels In scene 6, the angels of heaven in their millions now join the elders and living creatures in song.

Power... honour... glory The terms of this song attribute the same glory and honour and power to the Lamb as was attributed to God the Father (Revelation 4:11)

3 Song of the Universe

Every created thing In scene 7, all creatures of earth, sky, and sea join in the song. It becomes the song of the whole universe.

And to the Lamb Again we note that the same praise and honour is given "to him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb". It is clear that the Lamb and he who sits on the throne are both recognised equally as God.

Worshipped The elders fell down and worshipped. They clearly understood that the Lamb was God.

Amen The four living creatures kept saying "Amen" which means "true".


Another Lesson to Enjoy...

ico Music in Worship (History)

—The implications of the history of instrumental music in the worship of God, from patriarchal times until today. Touch the button title to go to that lesson.

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