Revelation Chapter 5
Chapter five is a continuation of the scene viewed in chapter four. There is no break in the story. We are still in heaven with John as he witnesses the twenty four elders fall down and begin to worship the one sitting upon the throne. As they worship they cast their crowns at His feet.
One of the first questions that most people have when studying chapter five is, “What is this little book?” We can’t say for sure, but I believe that we can give an educated guess by studying other portions of scripture. In the book of Ephesians Paul tells us the following:
“Ye were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession.” Ephesians 1:13-14
This verse is clear that there is a purchased possession that is awaiting redemption. When you consider this in conjuction with what we are told in Romans it makes a little more sense.
“We know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now. And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.” Romans 8:22-23
In these two references we are told that there is something that was lost by mankind and the earth that is to one day be redeemed. The inheritance that has been lost is the earth and immortal life, both given to and lost by Adam and Eve. When Adam sinned he lost the inheritance to the earth. This title deed today is in the hands of God awaiting one to step forward and redeem it. This means that God is waiting for someone to come forward and redeem all that Adam lost.
When Adam sinned he did lose this title. Adam was incapable of redeeming the thing he had lost, but the Bible tells us in Lev. 25:23-34 that a kinsman may redeem a lost possession. This kinsman was provided in the Lord Jesus Christ. He became our kinsman redeemer.
When this strong angel proclaimed with a loud voice “who is worthy to open the book, and to lose the seals thereof?” that was the advertisement for the kinsman redeemer to step forward and appear. The fact that this was a strong angel is very significant for if this angel in all of his strength could not open the book then who could?
When this proclamation goes forth John tells us that no man in heaven, on earth or under the earth was found worthy to take the book or to even look upon the book. When John sees this he begins to cry.
At this moment John sees something that up to this point he had not seen before. John saw a lamb, as it had been slain, standing in the midst of the throne. The reason that John had not seen this lamb before is that He had been seated on the throne with the Father. As the elder spoke the Lamb proceeded out of the glory of the throne.
As John begins to describe the Lamb he first tells us that He had seven horns. These horns speak of strength.
“All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.” Matthew 28:18
The seven eyes speak of the fact that He sees all things. The all seeing eye of the Lord views all things that we do, even those things done in secret.
“All things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do.” Hebrews 4:13
Not only is He all-powerful and all seeing but also we are told that the presence of the Holy Spirit rests upon Him. In light of these three things we can be safe in saying that there will be no mistakes made during the tribulation period.
As the Lamb proceeds from the throne and takes the book His work as a mediator ends and He begins His work of redemption.
Let me say this about the book. The book is not a book as we know it today. It will be a scroll. And the seals are not in a row along the edge of the book or roll. But rather a seal is broken and the parchment unrolled until the next seal reached and so on until all the seals are broken. As these seals are broken we are not told what the content of the book is. We are simply told that as the seals are broken certain things begin to happen.
These things are only preliminary to the Lamb’s taking possession of the earth. And Christ does not officially do this until chapter ten verses 1-6, when we are told that a mighty angel, Christ, places His right foot upon the sea and His left foot upon the land and cries out that there shall be “time no longer.” Or that there will be no longer delay and He formally takes possession of the earth.
As the Lord acts the saint’s break forth in praise. The theme of their praise is that the Lamb was slain upon Calvary’s cross, that His blood was shed for the entire world. They also sing about their soon return with Christ from heaven.