Revelation 4:5-8

July 7-8, 2018 • Pastor Netz Gómez

THE BEAUTY OF POWER AND THE PRESENCE OF GOD

“From the throne came flashes of lightning, rumblings and peals of thunder. In front of the throne, seven lamps were blazing. These are the seven spirits of God. 6 Also in front of the throne there was what looked like a sea of glass, clear as crystal. In the center, around the throne, were four living creatures, and they were covered with eyes, in front and in back.

7 The first living creature was like a lion, the second was like an ox, the third had a face like a man, the fourth was like a flying eagle. 8 Each of the four living creatures had six wings and was covered with eyes all around, even under its wings. Day and night they never stop saying: “‘Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty,’ who was, and is, and is to come.”

• “From the throne came flashes of lightning, rumblings and peals of thunder…”

The beauty of God’s Power is seen in the glorious manifestations from the eternal Throne of God through lightning, thunder and voices, which includes sounds, noises and music. Beginning from the Throne of God, these manifestations of power impart life to the rest of the created order and will burst upon the earth at the close of each series of judgments: 7 seals (Rev. 8:5), 7 trumpets (Rev. 11:19). ), 7 bowls (Rev. 16:18). In Revelation, lightning and thunder are always connected to the Throne scene and mark an event of unusual importance..

Rev. 8:5 “Then the angel took the censer, filled it with fire from the altar, and hurled it on the earth; and there came peals of thunder, rumblings, flashes of lightning and an earthquake.”

There are certain things and beings that are in front of or around the Throne but these three thunderous sounds come directly from the Throne. It was what the people of Israel witnessed when they entered into a covenant with God:

Éx. 19:16-19 “…there was thunder and lightning, with a thick cloud over the mountain, and a very loud trumpet blast. Everyone in the camp trembled.
17 Then Moses led the people out of the camp to meet with God, and they stood at the foot of the mountain. 18 Mount Sinai was covered with smoke, because the Lord descended on it in fire. The smoke billowed up from it like smoke from a furnace, and the whole mountain trembled violently. 19 As the sound of the trumpet grew louder and louder, Moses spoke and the voice of God answered him.” (Éx. 20:18-19).

Psal 77:18 “Your thunder was heard in the whirlwind, your lightning lit up the world; the earth trembled and quaked”

– In the lightning that we can see in the natural, God lets us see something of His glory (Testimony).

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– The thunder are the sounds that are heard during a thunderstorm. When the temperature is above 10,000 ° C, a violent pressure is produced that compresses the gases (mainly oxygen) and causes the rumbling sound of thunder. These “thunders” infuse a sense of fear when we come closer to His presence.

Ez. 3:12 “Then the Spirit lifted me up, and I heard behind me a loud rumbling sound as the glory of the Lord rose from the place where it was standing.”

• “In front of the throne, seven lamps were blazing. These are the seven spirits of God” These seven lamps that burn (or “torches”, Gr. Lampades) “which are the seven spirits of God” refer to perfection and the fullness of the activities of the Holy Spirit ready to pass from the presence of God to the earth, where they will do the work of God and consume evil. They illustrate the divine preparation for the battle against everything that hinders the love of God (Is. 4 :4; Mal. 4:1).

Zech. 4:6 and 10 “So he said to me, “This is the word of the Lord to Zerubbabel: ‘Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the Lord Almighty… 10 the seven eyes of the Lord that range throughout the earth.”

• Also in front of the throne there was what looked like a sea of glass: it is the great meeting place and “center of holy convocation” of all the saints in eternity. It must be able to gather billions of saints and is mixed with flames of fire. It is like a celestial “upper room”. Even now, when we worship, we are connected by the Spirit with this sea surrounded by holy fire.

Rev. 15:2 “And I saw what looked like a sea of glass glowing with fire and, standing beside the sea, those who had been victorious over the beast… They held harps given them by God.”

The beauty of the Presence of God is seen the manifestation of His “holy fire” over the sea surrounding saints and seraphim. It is not a crystal lake but a very large surface

Rev. 7:9 “After this I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands.”

• “In the center, around the throne, were four living creatures, and they were covered with eyes, in front and in back.” The four “living” creatures are angelic beings that reflect the attributes of God. They form an inner circle and surround both the throne and God Himself, so they certainly constitute an exalted order of angelic beings. They are similar to the seraphim (Is. 6:2), and the cherubim (Ez. 1:4-14; 9: 3; 10), although due to their di erences they seem to be in a unique category; They have a function of communicating the will of God (6:1, 3, 5, 7) and giving way to the judgments of God (15:7).

Their many “eyes before and behind” evidently speak of their ability to perceive all that God is and, also express his penetrating intelligence, which makes them immediately aware of what is happening and that a ects their responsibility in the judgments of God. ‘seraphim’ literally means “the burning ones”, and were created with supernatural abilities to, contemplate, understand and proclaim the

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eternal beauties of God, while surviving the power of His manifest presence in blazing fire, piercing light and thundering sounds.

• “The first living creature was like a lion, the second was like an ox, the third had a face like a man, the fourth was like a flying eagle”.

The likeness of these living beings with a lion, calf, man and flying eagle has a deep meaning, show four aspects of the character of God. Like a lion, this speaks of a strong and courageous warrior; the ox shows us a persevering servant in daily tasks; man reflects the dignity that God gives us to relate to and even to be able to govern with Him with intelligence; the flying eagle expresses freedom and authority in the Spirit.

Is. 31:4 “This is what the Lord says to me: “As a lion growls, a great lion over its prey— and though a whole band of shepherds is called together against it, it is not frightened by their shouts or disturbed by their clamor— so the Lord Almighty will come down to do battle on Mount Zion and on its heights.”

Éx. 19:4 “You yourselves have seen what I did to Egypt, and how I carried you on eagles’ wings and brought you to myself.”

God implanted in these four figures part of His character and each one expresses something of Him and they are also an image of those who are alive in the Spirit. We are strong, helpful, intelligent and we have authority when we are guided by the Holy Spirit.

Is. 40:31 “but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.”

In fact, the four Gospels describe these same expressions about Jesus: the Gospel of Mark shows us the majesty of the Lion of the tribe of Judah; Luke the service and strength of the ox; Matthew emphasizes the humanity of Jesus; and John the freedom of the eagle that goes back to the heights, implying the deity of Jesus.

• “Each of the four living creatures had six wings and was covered with eyes all around, even under its wings.” Again, his many “eyes” suggest a state of alert and wide knowledge. “Around and inside” suggests that they can move their wings without interrupting their vision of God. They attribute holiness to God “day and night,” that is, constantly, though not necessarily non-stop because during this vision they speak with John .

Rev. 6:1 “I watched as the Lamb opened the first of the seven seals. Then I heard one of the four living creatures say in a voice like thunder, “Come!” (6:3; 5 y 7)

• “Day and night they never stop saying: “‘Holy, holy, holy is the Lord.”

The focus of the worship of living creatures is on the holiness of God; which is His transcendent beauty, His omnipotence and His eternity. This continuous song of the four living beings underlines the central role of the one who sits on the throne in the present. As the absolutely holy, He has all the right

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and has sufficient power to initiate strict measures against His own creation in order to return it to its original holy state. This is the first of 20 “hymns” sung by various celestial groups in the Book of Revelation.

In Hebrew, the double repetition of a word adds emphasis, while the rare triple repetition (Trisagion) designates the superlative and draws attention to the infinite holiness of God.

Ps. 111:9 “holy and awesome is his name.”
The twenty-four elders; the living beings and all those around the throne

illustrate the proper response to the glory of God which is total worship. • “the Lord God Almighty,’ who was, and is, and is to come”

As if all this was not enough reminder of the greatness of God, they reiterate that God is the sovereign who sits on the throne and lives for ever and ever. All celestial creatures – those beings who are direct witnesses of the greatness of God – give glory to it, thereby urging us and ultimately all of creation to do the same.

Rev. 5:13 “Then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all that is in them, saying: “To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and honor and glory and power, for ever and ever!”.”

This adoration God moves us to renounce our fear of the human greatness that pales before the majesty of the eternal God with whom we have to develop a deep intimacy. Although we must live intimately with God and be open to hearing His voice, we are not responsible for generating spiritual experiences. We should give God the praise he deserves and allow Him to grant us the experiences he deems appropriate.

We may not understand everything that happens in this scene but we can respond with all our heart to the glory of His holiness and majesty.

Ps. 96:8-10 “Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name; bring an o ering and come into his courts. 9 Worship the Lord in the splendor of his holiness; tremble before him, all the earth. 10 Say among the nations, “The Lord reigns.” The world is firmly established, it cannot be moved; he will judge the peoples with equity.”

REFLECTION QUESTIONS

  1. Through these teachings, how has the idea you had about the throne of God changed?
  2. What inspire in you the lightning, thunder and voices that come from the throne of God?
  3. How do you think you must respond to the holiness of God?
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