Summary: This sermon answers the question, "what makes us worthy to call ourselves a child of God?"
Revelation 5: 11 – 14 Worthy?
Intro: A story was told of a man who loved old books. He met a friend who told him he had just thrown away an old Bible he had found stored in the attic of his ancestral home for generations. “Somebody name Guten-something had printed it.” “Was it Gutenberg?!” The friend exclaimed in horror. “Why yes, I think it was.” “That Bible was one of the first books ever printed. A copy has sold for as much as $2 million.!” “His friend was unimpressed. “Mine wouldn’t have brought a dollar. Some fella name Luther had scribbled all over it in German.” --- Some people can know the cost of everything; but the worth of nothing. (Sermon Central – illustration)
I. Verse 12 – “… Worthy is the Lamb that was slaughtered to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!”
A. Worthy – related to the word worth. Who determines the worth of an item? In this passage it is the angels, living creatures and the elders numbering in the myriads, thousands and thousands who proclaim the worth of Jesus, the Lamb.
C. I once had a young man tell me that the church and Jesus meant nothing to him because neither had done anything for him. Sadly, that’s that way many people feel about Christ and his Church and that is largely our fault because we are the hands and feet of Christ in this world. Is Christ worth less because we are useless?
II. But Christ Jesus, the Lamb IS worthy. He is worthy because of what He did and is able to continue to do through us.
A. In Matthew 11:28 – “Come to me all who labor and are heavy laden and I will give you rest.”
B. He died for the wayward – Titus 2: 14 – “Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity . . .”
C. Fritz Kreisler was a master violinist born in Vienna in 1875. Prior to WW2 he gained great acclaim as a person who could play the violin as no one had before. There are a number of stories regarding this man; some are documented, some not. --- The story of how he acquired his Stradivarius violin is told in several versions. --- The most likely is that he was invited to the home of a wealthy Englishman who owned the instrument. After dinner, Mr. Kreisler asked if he could see the instrument and hold it. It was brought from the safety of its location and placed in his hands. He asked his host if he could play the instrument. After being granted permission, Mr. Kreisler play so beautifully and the owner of the violin was moved to tears. He presented the Stradivarius to Kreisler saying that because of his virtuosity, he was more worthy of its ownership than he. Kreisler was worthy of the violin because of his love of music. We are worthy of the love of Christ because of His love for us. (Treasury of Sermon Illustrations.)
III. Verse 13 – “Then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all that is in them, singing, ‘To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and honor and glory and power forever and ever!’”
A. Because it is God (the one on the throne) and the Lamb (Jesus) who merits the worship of the heavenly host, we must ask what lifestyle is acceptable to God.
B. It is not the lifestyle of the mighty, or those who are famous, or those who are worldly wise or powerful that is acceptable to God.
C. It is those who are victims of the system, just as the Lamb was a victim of the religious system and Roman government. These are the ones who are promised the blessings of the age to come.
Conclu: The only thing that makes you and me worthy of God’s love is His son, Christ Jesus. Because of His sacrifice, we are worthy in the eyes of God. There is nothing you or I can do to earn God’s favor or love. We are worthy only when we acknowledge that sacrifice, accept Christ Jesus as the one who makes us worthy and live as though it matters. Worthy? Are you?