The Lamb of God
The Lord Jesus Christ is the main Person of the Apocalypse with His preferred title the "Lamb" appearing (28) times in the book of the Revelation. Although John in Revelation 1-3 sees him as the glorified Lord of glory, the first appearance of the Lord as the “Lamb” occurs at Revelation 5:6-8 where He is introduced in the throne room of God at His heavenly coronation:
"And I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of the throne and of the four beasts, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as it had been slain, having seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth. And He came and took the book out of the right hand of Him that sat upon the throne. And when He had taken the book, the four beasts and four and twenty elders fell down before the Lamb having every one of them harps and golden vials full of odors, which are the prayers of the saints."
The magnificent praise and worship scene that follows in 5:9-14 reveals that this is the main event of the Apocalypse as the Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of Glory, is the only One worthy to take the scroll from the Father which begins end-time events on planet earth.
The Lord Jesus, who alone is the Righteous Judge (John 5:27-29), is now prepared to loose the seals on the outside of the scroll in order to begin the events of the 70th Week of Daniel. It is only as the Lord Jesus starts the unfolding of events at the end of the age that "the things which shall be hereafter" (Revelation 1:19) will occur in His perfect timing and sovereign control.
Now it is His day that is about to happen, for the LORD Jehovah is making the enemies of the Lord Jesus Christ "His footstool" (Psalm 110:1) and the time has now come for God the Father to bring this promise He made to the Lord Jesus Christ to complete fruition.
At the end of this glorious praise scene in Revelation 5:9-14, which occurs in heaven, the time-clock of the end times begins to tick as “the Lamb” opens the seals on the outside of the scroll He has just taken from God the Father’s hand:
"And I saw when the Lamb opened one of the seals, and I heard, as it were the noise of thunder, one of the four beasts saying, Come and see. And I saw, and behold a white horse: and he that sat on him had a bow; and a crown was given unto him; and he went forth conquering and to conquer." (Revelation 6:1, 2)
The Lamb who is in complete control of the events of the 70th Week of Daniel, allows the Antichrist to begin conquering when he will "subdue three kings" (Daniel 7:24, 7:20, 7:8) of "the ten kings that shall arise" (Daniel 7:24; Revelation 17:12) in that day.
The next time “the Lamb” is mentioned occurs in Revelation 6:16, 17:
"And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of Him that sits on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb: For the great day of His wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?"
After the events which occur from the opening of the first five seals by the Lamb, the opening of the sixth seal causes the men of the earth to recognize that God is about to send His Day of the Lord judgment from heaven. They realize that no one will be able to bear the Lamb’s great wrath. Then, after the sealing of the 144 Thousand (Revelation 7:1-8), the Lamb appears "before the throne" in heaven as the resurrected and raptured saints arrive in heaven:
"After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands. And cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sits upon the throne, and unto the Lamb."(Revelation 7:9, 10)
This great victory celebration goes forth in view of "the blessed hope" (Titus 2:13) now a reality for the millions, yea, billions of innumerable resurrected and raptured saints who have just arrived in heaven. This glorious heavenly scene continues to unfold:
"And one of the elders answered saying unto me, What are these which are arrayed in white robes? And whence came they? And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of [the] great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb."
(Revelation 7:13, 14).
The resurrected and raptured saints are clearly identified by one of the elders in heaven, for the Lord shortens the great tribulation (Matthew 24:22) by rescuing His elect/saints from the Antichrist’s persecution by the rapture just before He pours out His wrath on an unbelieving world (I Thessalonians 1:10, 5:9).
At the close of this marvelous scene in heaven the Lamb is once again at the forefront:
"For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes." (Revelation 7:17)
The Lord Jesus Christ will continue to minister to His resurrected, raptured and glorified saints for eternity in heaven as will God the Father. The next place the word Lamb is seen is in Revelation 12:11:
"And they overcame him [Satan] by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.”
The power of “the blood of the Lamb”, along with an impeccable testimony demonstrated by their willingness to give their lives for the Lord, provides certain and clear victory over Satan’s vicious assault during his “great wrath” (Revelation 12:12).
The Lord Jesus Christ is shown to be the Owner of the book of life. He has given His life in order that the eternal life of God can be given to those who will turn from their sin and trust Him as their Savior (John 6:35, 8:12, 10:10, 11:35, 14:6). Unfortunately many will reject His free gift of salvation as this verse indicates for the vast majority will worship the Antichrist in that day.
"And all that dwell upon earth shall worship him [the Antichrist] whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world." (Revelation 13:8)
The Lamb, the Lord Jesus Christ, is an integral part of the next passage being mentioned (3) times:
"And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Zion, and with Him an hundred forty and four thousand, having His Father’s name written in their foreheads. And I heard a voice from heaven, as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of a great thunder: and I heard the voice of harpers harping with their harps: And they sung a new song before the throne, and before the four beasts and the elders: and no man could learn that song but the hundred forty and four thousand, which were redeemed from the earth. These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever He goes. These were redeemed from among men being the first fruits unto God and to the Lamb." (Revelation 14:1-4)
This scene is filled with a holy heavenly aura, as it is unique to Scripture with heaven and earth joining in a harmonious praise song before the throne of God. It is now the end of the 70th Week of Daniel and the Lord has redeemed Israel. It is this event that is being celebrated on earth and in heaven. The Lord Jesus Christ receives “the kingdoms of this world” (Revelation 11:15).
The 144 Thousand are standing “with Him” demonstrating their continuing action of physically following the Lamb throughout the Day of the Lord when they will continue to carry on their ministry.
The writing upon the foreheads of the 144 Thousand includes His name [The Lamb] and the name of His Father. There are others in Scripture who have the Lord’s name inscribed on their foreheads (Revelation 3:12, 22:3, 4). These young men are unique for they have both the name of the Father and the name of the Lamb and are thereby protected in the midst of the Day of the Lord judgments when they will continue to serve the Lord (Revelation 9:4).
The 144 Thousand represent the Old and New Covenant having full benefit of the knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ and the New Covenant but serving as "servants of our God" (Revelation 7:3) during the seven-year restored “holy covenant”(Daniel 11:28-32) period [70th Week of Daniel].
The title given the 144 Thousand in this passage is also unique to this group of men. They are called "the first fruits unto God and to the Lamb" (Revelation 14:4) indicating that they are the first of God’s earthly people the Jews to be redeemed during this restored holy covenant dispensation.
"And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand, The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture in the cup of His indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb." (Revelation 14:10)
This important angelic announcement is global in scope along with the two previous angelic announcements in Revelation 14:6-9 as all three are being directed to "them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people" (Revelation 14:6).
The penalty for worshiping the beast by receiving his identifying mark is clear and concise having eternal consequences. Although not specified directly in this passage, the announcement includes the eternal name of "the Lamb" (Revelation 21:9, 14, 22, 23, 27, 22:1, 3) and the eternal "holy angels". Therefore, this "fire and brimstone" is most likely referring to the eternal torment of hell itself.
(Revelation 19:20, 20; 11-15)
"And I saw as it were a sea of glass mingled with fire: and them that had gotten the victory over the beast, and over his image, and over his mark, and over the number of his name, stand on the sea of glass, having the harps of God. And they sing the song of Moses the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying, Great and marvelous are Thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are Thy ways, Thou King of saints. Who shall not fear Thee, O Lord, and glorify Thy name? For Thou only are holy: For all nations shall come and worship before Thee; For Thy judgments are made manifest." (Revelation 15:2-4)
The "song of the Lamb" is focused upon in this passage along with the victory "song of Moses the servant of God" which is found in Exodus 15:1-19 having been sung by Moses and the children of Israel who celebrated the Lord’s victory over the Egyptians.
The lyrics to "the song of the Lamb" are set forth here in this text being derived from the announcement given by the angel in Revelation 14:6, 7. Four specific points are recorded in both passages:
1. The Fear of God
2. The Glorifying of God
3. The Worship of God
4. The Judgment of God
In Revelation 14:6, 7 a global angelic warning is given as the Antichrist begins his control over humanity "unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue and people" before the judgment of God comes.
Notice the statement "for the hour of His judgment is [about to] come" (Revelation 14:7). It utilizes the same grammatical construction as "for the great day of His wrath is [about to] come" (Revelation 6:17) indicating the judgment of God had not yet occurred but was now impending or just about to happen. This warning will be given some time after the mid-point of the 70th Week of Daniel, but before the judgment of God is executed when the Day of the Lord begins (Revelation 8:1).
In Revelation 14:6, 7 the warning is given. In Revelation 15:3, 4 "the song of the Lamb" initially praises the Father followed by a rhetorical question and declaration of the future world worship of the Lord God Almighty after His final "judgments [the seven vials] are made manifest".
This heavenly throne room scene (Revelation 15:3, 4) on the "sea of glass" (Revelation 4:6) where both the Old and New Covenant victory songs are being sung depicts those martyrs who have gotten "the victory over the beast" as recorded earlier:
"And they overcame him [Satan] by the blood of the Lamb and the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death." (Revelation 12:11)
This indicates the three keys to victory over Satan regardless of when he attacks:
1. The [Blood] of the Lamb
2. The word of their testimony [Blamelessness]
3. They loved not their lives unto the death [Being spent (II Corinthians 12:15) for the Master’s glory]
The next passage mentioning “the Lamb” moves forward to the end of the Day of the Lord:
"And the ten horns which thou saw are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power [authority] as kings one hour with the beast. These have one mind, and shall give their power and strength [authority] unto the beast. These shall make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome them: for He is Lord of lords and King of kings: and they that are with Him [144 Thousand (Revelation 14:4)] are called, and chosen, and faithful."(Revelation 17:12-14)
The ten kings will eventually give their full allegiance to the Antichrist near the end of the Day of the Lord to perform primarily two specific duties. First of all, they will be the instrument God uses to destroy Babylon theGreat [Rome/Romanism:World False Religion] (Revelation 17:16, 17).
Secondly, they will become part of the Antichrist’s global army that goes forth to war at Armageddon ultimately being destroyed by the Lamb, the Lord Jesus Christ (Revelation 19:11-21). This is also indicated in the passage when they "shall make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome them: for He is Lord of lords and King of kings".
The last end times “Lamb” passage occurs just before Jesus comes as “King of kings and Lord of lords”:
"Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honor to Him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and His wife has made herself ready. And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints. And he said unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he said unto me, These are the true sayings of God." (Revelation 19:7-9)
This passage shows that all of God’s redeemed have the blessed promise of attending this great celebration in heaven. The wedding garment is described as "fine linen clean and white…the righteousness of the saints".
This garment is promised to every saint when they are justified by faith as described by Isaiah:
"I will greatly rejoice in the LORD, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for He has clothed me with the garments of salvation, He has covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decks himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels." (Isaiah 61:10)
The martyrs also are given these same white robes of righteousness:
"And white robes were given unto every one of them [martyrs]; and it was said unto them, that they should rest yet for a little season, until their fellow servants also and their brethren (Revelation 12:11, 15:3, 4, 20:4) that should be killed as they were, should be fulfilled." (Revelation 6:11)
The raptured saints and the resurrected saints of the ages will also be clothed with these same beautiful white and glorious "garments of salvation…robes of righteousness":
"After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands." (Revelation 7:9)
The remaining occurrences of the Lamb are seen after the Apocalypse, the Day of the Lord, ends. However, the Lamb, who is the Price and Person of redemption, continues to be the Lord’s favorite title throughout eternity as the following seven passages affirm:
"And there came unto me one of the seven angels which had the seven vials full of the seven last plagues, and talked with me, saying, Come hither, I will show thee the bride, the Lamb’s wife." (Revelation 21:9)
"And the wall of the city [The Heavenly Jerusalem] had twelve foundations, and in them the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb." (Revelation 21:14)
"And I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it." (Revelation 21:22) And the city had no need of the sun neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof." (Revelation 21:23)
"And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defiles, neither whatsoever works abomination, or makes a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb’s book of life." (Revelation 21:27)
"And he showed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb."(Revelation 22:1)
"And there shall be no more curse: but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and His servants shall serve Him." (Revelation 22:3)
The angel also confirms exactly who is the Lamb’s wife during his heavenly showing to the apostle John:
1. The nations of them which are saved (21:24)
2. They which are written in the Lamb’s book of life (21:27)
3. The servants of the Lamb (22:3)
While the Lamb’s Redemption of mankind is the major underlying theme of the Revelation with persecution and judgment only being utilized to purify and draw men to the Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord’s Second Coming will unfold in three distinct phases:
1. The Glorious Reception (Revelation 7:9-17)
[When the Saints are resurrected and raptured] (I Thessalonians 4:13-18)
2. The Grand Redemption (Revelation14:1)
[When ’The Redeemer comes to Zion’] (Isaiah 59:20; Romans 11:25, 26)
3. The Great Retribution (Revelation 19:11-21)
[When Jesus comes as King of kings and Lord of Lords at the Battle of Armageddon]
He will come to receive the saints "in the clouds" (Matthew 24:30; Acts 1:9-11; I Thessalonians 4:17; Revelation 1:7) ending the great tribulation. Then He will redeem the nation of Israel at the end of the 70th Week of Daniel. And finally He will appear as King of kings and Lord of lords bringing retribution upon the Antichrist and the nations at Armageddon ending the Day of the Lord.
Every major series of events of the end times, the Great Tribulation, the 70th Week of Daniel, and the Day of the Lord, will be concluded by the certain intervention of the Lord Jesus Christ. He will not only author the conclusion of these events, but He will also initiate the beginning of the end of the age when He systematically opens the seven sealed scroll, preparing the world for the Day of the Lord judgments which are contained within the scroll.
All facets of the end times will be in His hands. He, the Lamb of God, the Redeemer, has been given all "power [authority] in heaven and in earth" (Matthew 28:18) and for that may all the praise, honor and glory be given to Him, Amen and Amen!