Summary: John gives us a first glimpse into heaven. Part one deals with the "Sights" in heaven...Part two will speak to the ’Sounds’ in heaven.
“A Little Glimpse of Heaven” Part 1
* We all like to sing and dream about heaven. My questions today are these: Do you really want to go there? Are you sure? Do you believe the Bible? What if the Bible rendition of heaven is vastly different than ours? We must believe God’s word, if we desire to spend eternity in heaven. God’s word tells us more than we would like to know. So let’s hear from God’s word what HE has to say about Heaven. (READ TEXT)
* Revelation 4 seem to give to us the ‘sights’ and ‘sounds’ of heaven from someone who has been ‘invited’ in. Today let’s see the sights.
* After seeing the door and being invited in (Which many believe ‘symbolizes’ the rapture of the church. One thought which I have is that this symbolizes the death of a Saint – we see a door & hear a voice giving the invitation) John gives us a first person view of this place called heaven. Think about how overwhelmed John must have been.
The Center piece of heaven is the Throne – (Verse 2) “There in Heaven a throne was set”. In Heaven as in the Revelation, the “Throne” is a big thing. It is the centerpiece of attention. It is mentioned many times and in many ways.
* There is a tendency today to think that the universe revolves about us or even the earth, but it revolves around the throne.
* The language in verse 2 seems to indicate that John saw the throne being set in its place. This reminds us that heaven is making ready for all creation to come to the throne.
* There is a great deal of business done at the throne. It is a place of evaluation, judgment, sentencing, grace, & mercy.
* Everything and everyone finds their place for eternity by starting at the throne.
* This picture of heaven begins with a facsimile of our heart. Every heart has a throne in it. It is the controlling center of life. Everything you do begin there.
1. Around the Throne – (Vs 3b,4,6b-7) - You can always tell what is going on in a place (even heaven and the heart) by what is going on around the control center. Never forget that the Bible says, “As a man thinks in his heart, so is he” and “Out of the heart flows the issues of life.” Basically, whatever is surrounding the controller of your heart is on display to other people. Such is the case in our text.
* We see a rainbow. We have all seen rainbows, but this one is unique. Why? This is not a half-rainbow but a complete one which “surrounds” the throne. This reminds us that in heaven all things are completed and that God is perfect. To see the rainbow is to be reminded of God’s covenant to Noah.
* Not only that, but John sees an unusual color, emerald which is a green color. Can you get the picture in your mind?
* Now look around the centerpiece and see 24 thrones. Why 24? Could this be to represent the 12 tribes & 12 apostles? Allow me to suggest that these represent the redeemed of all the ages. (We know who we are by who we gather with)
* Finally, we see 4 living creature around the throne; lion, calf, man, and eagle. These are symbolic of the 4 named parts of creation which God made a covenant with back in Genesis 9.
* Think about this picture and let 2 thoughts permeate your soul, Covenant & Conversion Connections around the throne.
2. Before the throne - The end of verse 5 and the beginning of verse 6 picture what was before, or in front of, the throne. Reading the number 7, reminds us that it means ‘completion”.
* The lamps indicate that this is this is the throne of a sovereign as well as they are burning to illuminate the work. Fire and light are both symbols of the work of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit casts light on the glory of Jesus and convicts the man of his sin (Jn 16:8). His ministry is still active before the throne.
* Also before the throne is a sea of glass. We can begin by comparing the Sea of Glass around the throne to the Sea of BRASS outside the Temple in the Old Testament. Outside the place of worship there was a large laver filled with water. Before the Priest could enter HIS presence they had to wash & be cleansed. It is a picture of 1 Jn 1:9 & speaks of Holiness
* It is also a picture of calm at the throne telling us that God’s judgment is final, it is righteous and there is no appeal.