Summary: There are five repeated messages for the Church in Revelation: Remember, Repent, Repeat (your first works), Hold On!, and Listen! If we do these things, we'll see God
3. And all curses existed no longer, and the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it, and his servants will serve Him.
4. And they shall see His face, and His name is on their foreheads.
5. And night does not exist there, and they do not need the light of a lamp, and the light of the sun, because the Lord God enlightens them, and they shall reign (do the king thing) forever and ever.
v. 3 No curses. Where did we first see curses? In the Garden (Genesis 3), and it was God pronouncing them. To Adam, God pronounced the curse of the earth (the Adamah), that it would no longer be easy to grow crops, with thorns (later to be Jesus’ crown) & thistles being produced and that he would return to the same dirt from which he was taken. To the woman He pronounced pain in bearing children and that she would want to dominate her husband, but he would instead dominate her, and to the serpent He said there would be enmity between him & the woman and her “seed” (in Greek, sperma) would crush the serpent’s head & the seed of the serpent would strike His heel. This curse is interesting because it curses the serpent but also announces God’s plan to bless and heal and rescue all of humanity. Jesus crushed the power of the serpent on the cross, taking the curse on Himself (Galatians 3:13). So, from the beginning of humanity we have the curse of the earth as a result of human disobedience, we see that to the extreme today. The curse of toil, that humans would invest much of their time in activities that may not be very fruitful, just to survive. The curse relationships between husbands and wives, that power struggles would ensue, rather than peaceful pleasurable, fruitful fellowship. And we see the curse of the creatures of this world, with humans crushing heads and creatures biting heels. In heaven there will be none of this. All work will be fruitful. All relationships will be peaceful and right and productive. All creatures will and live together peacefully (Isaiah 11).
v. 4 No one can see the face of God and live (Exodus 33). Yet Jesus taught the “pure in heart” will see God (Matthew 5). His servants, the ones round the throne, have already died. They can’t die again. And there is nothing better for the lover than to see the Beloved’s face. This is the greatest reward, as the ancient blessing proclaims “The Lord bless you & keep you. The Lord make His face to shine upon you and be gracious to you. The Lord lift up His countenance upon you and give you peace” (Numbers 6). To have the joy of seeing the one you love face-to-face is the greatest reward. To be separated from the Beloved is the greatest curse. There are no curses here.
and His Name-When He looks at us there, He will see His own name. Just like i still wear some of the clothes my son left from his days at boarding school-and those clothes have his name written in them, meaning they belong to him. He will look at us and see we belong to Him.
v. 5 Night does not exist there. The sun and moon also don’t exist there, because they’re not needed. Jesus said “I am the light of the world” in John 9. Jesus and His disciples met a man born blind and the Disciples asked who sinned so he was blind. But they missed the point. No one had sinned. There was no generational curse this man was living out. His blindness resulted in the glory of God being revealed in an extraordinary healing. And the once-blind-man came to faith in Jesus. Jesus said the night was coming when no one could work. But while it’s day we should work, doing good. Imagine. No need for sleep, we’ll have bodies that need no recovery time. No need for dreams, reality is better than any dream. Imagine being able to be productive and make a positive difference every moment of your existence. Imagine that kind of restfulness.
Thought for Today
Maybe there are enough thoughts in the verse-by-verse commentary. God has in store for us a life of productivity, fellowship and peace. I believe He invites us to embrace these ideals of heaven even while we are here on earth. This is what Jesus taught us to pray.
Our Father, in heaven
May Your name be hallowed
Thy kingdom come,
Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread
And forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us.