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A New Song in Heaven - 17

Beacon Baptist / Gregory N. Barkman
The Truth Network Radio
July 19, 2021 2:00 am

A New Song in Heaven - 17

Beacon Baptist / Gregory N. Barkman

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July 19, 2021 2:00 am

Pastor Mike Karns continues his expositional series in the book of Revelation.

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I am in Revelation chapter 5, we are considering a new song that John draws our attention to, and I will read the entire chapter, Revelation, chapter 5, beginning at verse one and I saw in the right hand of him who sat on the throne a scroll written inside and on the back, sealed with seven seals.

Then I saw a strong angel proclaiming with a loud voice, who is worthy to open the scroll and to loose it sealed and no one in heaven or on earth or under the earth was able to open the scroll or to look at it.

So I went much because no one was found worthy to open and read the scroll or to look at it but one of the elders said to me, do not weep. Behold, the lion of the tribe of Judah root of David, has prevailed to open the scroll and to loose its seven seals. And I looked, and behold, in the midst of the throne and of the four living creatures, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as though it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth.

Then he came and took the scroll out of the right hand of him who sat on the throne.

Now when he had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the 24 elders fell down before the Lamb, each having a harp and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints, and they sang a new song, saying you are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, for you were slain, and have redeemed us to God by your blood out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation, and it made us kings and priests to our God and we shall reign on the earth. Then I looked and heard the voice of many angels around the throne living creatures and the elders and the number of them was 10,00010,000, and thousands of thousands, saying with a loud voice, worthy is the Lamb who was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and blessing. And every creature which is in heaven and on the earth and under the earth and such as are in the sea and all that are in them. I heard saying blessing and honor and glory and power be to him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb forever and ever. Then the four living creatures said amen and the 24 elders fell down and worshiped him, who lives forever and ever.

My God write his eternal word upon our hearts and give us understanding and give us a will and a desire to comply and to conform our lives to revealed word of God. One of the great gifts of the church, the Lord Jesus Christ, at least in our lifetime is been Dr. RC Sproul, who is now in glory.

One of his legacies that he left the church was his high view of God a man of incredible theological preciseness of mind to understand and comprehend and to articulate theology.

I recall being it the look in your conference in Orlando, Florida, and heard him preach. Lisa was the last time I heard him preach and he was obviously a week and that was on oxygen and they had to wheel him to the stage in a wheelchair and as he was helped to the platform any behind the lectern and he preached he preached from Isaiah chapter 6 on the holiness of God. Whatever weakness he knew in body, spirit of God helped him in your mind was not drawn to how we can feeble this man was, but your mind and heart was drawn to the God that he was exulting and elevating and worshiping for the end of his ministry. He took on a project of writing music setting words of Scripture to music and then entered into a partnership with Jeff Lippincott and who wrote the music to quite a few hymns that Dr. RC Sproul had written one of those hymns that we heard song. It the look in your conference. Was this human title worthy is the Lamb and listen to the words and how they come straight out of Revelation chapter 5 the veil of heaven opened wide. The scene was clearly set.

John saw a scroll written either side were seven seals are met with booming voice. The angel said to now unseal the scroll but none was found to meet the task, not even one lone soul convulsed with tears and broken heart. John's hope was now assailed weep not the elder counseled him a lion has prevailed no lion came to take his claim. No beast of Royal rain. Instead, there stood a bloodied lamb like one who had been slain 10,00010,000 more.

The host of heaven cried all blessing honor, glory and power to Christ the lamb that died worthy worthy worthy is the Lamb worthy worthy is the Lamb who was slain that captures and preserves in song, the words of Revelation chapter 5 that were considering this evening a new song were told in verse eight. Now when he had taken the scroll, the focus up to this point in John's vision was of him who was seated on the throne in John's vision was drawn to a scroll a seven sealed scroll in the right hand of Almighty God.

And you heard me read the Scriptures you heard it rendered in song. There was a search went out for someone worthy to take the seven sealed scroll and open it, and to reveal its content and no one was found. John wept because of that reality.

One of the elders said to him, do not weep.

Behold, the lion of the tribe of Judah, the root of David, has prevailed and John's vision was drawn away from him who sat on the throne, which is dominated chapter 4 and chapter 5.

Up to this point. John's attention is drawn away to him who approached God the father on the on the throne of God and took the scroll and as he did all heaven erupted in worship and praise. And that's the seen this before us the land is worthy of the highest praise. Now when he had taken the scroll, only backup the verse seven.

Then he that is the Lamb that is Christ. That is our glorified Savior. When he came and took the scroll out of the right hand of him who sat on the throne. Now when he had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the 24 elders fell down before the Lamb, each having a harp and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints, the new song that John heard was the song of redemption. It was the song celebrating the death and the resurrection of Jesus Christ and the salvation that he had accomplished William Hendrickson in his commentary says they sing a new song because never before had such a great and glorious deliverance been accomplished. Never before had the Lamb receive this great honor. So it's a new song new in the sense that worship is not directed to God Almighty on the throne, but worship is now being directed to the second person of the Godhead, God the son for his redemptive work again. Now when he had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the 24 elders fell down before the Lamb, each having a harp and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints stop and make mention of what we see there the golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the same. Perhaps we need some help in understanding the value that heaven places upon our prayers as saints of God on this earth. Perhaps we have not fully understood that the offering of prayers as an act of worship here in the presence of this scene of worship are again for living creatures and 24 elders each having a harp and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints preps more than anything else. It should inspire us and encourage us in 200. Help us to understand that our prayers are not simply a means of communication and fellowship with God and interceding for others, but first and foremost, at least in this context it is worship and some asked from time to time. Why why why do we have an order of worship. Why do we do the things we do in worship is that just tradition we had this discussion recently. I believe in staff meeting. Or maybe it was another context muncher but we try and include those things in the order of worship that are that were given instruction in the word of God in here is worship. And here is prayers being offered. So we are more than invoking the blessing of God upon a gathering of corporate gathering. We are also engaged in worship leading you in worship, helping you understand that prayers both corporate and individual are an active that is taking place here.

The host of heaven sang a new song and notice what provoked that they sang a new song verse nine, saying you are worthy to take the scroll now again worship now is being diverted away from him who sits on the throne to him who comes to take the seven sealed scroll out of the right hand of Almighty God. They the four living creatures and the 24 elders. They sang a new song, saying you are worthy to take the scroll and open it seals and what qualifies him to take the scroll. What are they directing our attention to says for you were slain. Why is he worthy of worship others to elements here and one is not mentioned is not the the the cause of worship.

I need to mention it so that you can see the distinction that I want to make Christ is worthy. He has intrinsic worth and who he is and is person in his perfection and his being God is worthy of our worship. But he receives worship, not for who he is, but for what he has accomplished and notice what this glorious cause is the worthiness of the Savior who has ascended and taken his reign in heaven and he is worship there because it says you were slain, and have redeemed us to God by your blood. You were slain, Christ is glorified Christ is worship tier for his sacrifice and death for his giving of himself to redeem all people from their sins. Seems like an odd but not odd, but our attention not to be arrested. I think at this point. Of all the things that would be the cause for our attention being drawn to worship him.

There are so many things again. It's not his person is not his character is not his perfection.

It's not his teaching is not his example. It's is redemptive work. It's is giving of himself to redeem us to God. It is because of him shove his shedding his own blood to redeem us. Sometimes we asked the question who is responsible for the death of Jesus, who was responsible that he was slain in our many answers to that question, but let me suggest one that perhaps we don't very often think of only seek to answer that question who was responsible for the death of Jesus. Jesus was Jesus was. He gave his life willingly sacrificially of his own free will and accord it was voluntary it was vicarious. Jesus said no one takes my life from me.

I lay it down and I have power to take it back up. Jesus willed his own death. He laid down his life voluntarily on purpose, for the purpose of redeeming us by his blood, so Christ is worthy, not only because he was slain but secondly, in the text here he's worthy to be worshiped for the salvation that his death you are worthy to take the scroll and open it seals for you were slain. You see, if Jesus death was just simply a plan gone awry. Just got caught up in the vortex of evil people of faith. That's all it is that he's not worthy to be worshiped, but is worthy to be worshiped because he was slain, and being slain, giving his life had a purpose. He came for the purpose of giving his life that he might redeem us to God by his blood. There are those who are not very happy with the emphasis of blood and scriptures. One abstract that from it. They are embarrassed by it. They want to ignore that, but folks any any salvation that is void of the blood of Christ is a deficient salvation were saved by the blood and body of the Lord Jesus Christ dying of Jesus, the shedding of his blood without the remission of sins without the forgiveness of sins without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sins. The shedding of the blood of Christ is absolutely essential to our salvation. I don't know what the mention of the cross. The mention of death. The mention of blood.

The mention of a cross evokes in you, but whatever it does.

It ought to be different than the world what is the world how does the worldview. The message of the cross will Paul tells us in first Corinthians chapter 1 that the message of the cross is foolishness is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God to those who are perishing, foolishness.

But to us who are being saved. That may arrest your attention a bit weak tend to talk about being saved in the past tense.

But again, we need to be reminded that when we talking salvation.

Salvation is a broad term there many aspects of salvation. There is a sense in which we have past tense.

Been saying we been justified, but is Paul draws our attention. Their first Corinthians chapter 1, to us who are being saved that there is a present aspect to God's saving work that draws our attention to the doctrine of progressive sanctification.

None are places in the Scriptures where we find reference to a future salvation, we shall be saved. Was it uncertain. Is it something that we are can be confident about know it's again speaking of another dimension, another aspect of salvation and in theological terms its glorification worldviews the cross the world views the death of Christ is a sign of weakness, that he could overcome his enemies. But again, what does Paul say to us who are being saved. It's the power of God, not weakness but a manifestation in the demonstration of power foolishness to the world. But what the manifestation of the wisdom of God the wisdom of God. Again, the world says it's it epitomizes weakness but for you and I as believers. It's a reminder of the power of God. The strength of God world says that it's an example of shame and the grotesque and the seventh of the nakedness of Christ hanging on the cross he he was Shane and there's a sense in which he was but the cross has earned Christ the highest honor is not Shane. The Bible says that God is exalted him and given him a name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the father and that's in the context of Philippians chapter 2 that speaks of his great humiliation is incarnation his death upon the cross and God rewarded Christ for his willingness to humble himself and to come and give his life and what followed humiliation exaltation exaltation, so the world says it's a place of deep distress, a place of deep disgrace. But the Bible tells us it is very place that the glory of the grace of God is displayed, the world would say it's a it's an emblem it's assigned it's evidence of defeat where the word of God.

But the Bible Christian says no no no it's not it's not an emblem of defeated is the place of greatest greatest triumph were Christ faced though worst of enemies, send death the grave and was big glorious.

So again I say all that just to underscore that our attention is drawn as we are made to see that Jesus is worshiped in heaven and what is the basis why is he worshiped in heaven because number one.

He was slain. Number two.

He has redeemed us to God by his blood. I was going to say women I maybe maybe I will, and has redeemed us to God out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation. There's a wideness in God's mercy God is drawing men and women. The elect of God from the four corners of the earth, he is preparing a bride for his son and that bride will consist of people from every tribe and tongue and people and nation. And that's why we are so enthusiastically engaged in worldwide missions because there are the elect of God scattered all over the earth, represented in every tribe, tongue, people and nation and we want to take the good news of the gospel which is the means of salvation to those who have not yet been brought in that when we think of salvation we most of the time. Think of being saved from we been saved from sin. We been saved from wrath.

We been saved from condemnation. We been saved from the penalty of sin, but this scene of worship in heaven draws our attention, not what we been saved only from but what we have been saved to and what have we been saved to according to verse 10 again. Worship is being directed to God the son for his redemptive work for the shedding of his blood for redeeming us on to God and he has made us kings and priests to our God and we shall reign on the earth. Not enough. Your Bible draws your attention to the fact that there's a textual variant in verse 10. My Bible does in my study did and really the thought. There is not.

In verse 10 he is not made us kings, but is made as a kingdom singular is made us a kingdom we are part of a kingdom. Christ is the king. He is the monarchy is the one that we bow to. He's the one that we seek to honor and obey the Christ and him alone is to be worshiped, obeyed and served not Caesar or any other earthly monarch, but Christ. That's what we been safe to we been saved to a life of obedience been saved to a life of service we been saved to a life of allegiance to King Jesus because he's made us a part of his kingdom eight kingdom has made us a kingdom and priests chloro to our God, the connection here is we are to serve Christ and Christ's kingdom in a priestly capacity. What is that me.

What would a priest do well priests worship. That's one thing. And that's what were saying here set before us. This scene of worship. Priests engage in a priestly work incense the prayers we we are we at we pray to God we serve God is priests in that fashion.

We serve Christ and whatever his interests are in this world.

We represent him in this world to a lost and dying world. So those are some of the ways in which we serve as priests and then a question that is a bit challenging, says he's made us kings and priests to our God, and it says, and we shall notice the the definite aspect to it.

We shall not my.

We hope to we could know we shall reign on the earth we shall reign on the earth in the context there is that there will be an earthly kingdom and on that kingdom. We will reign with Christ and some kind of a priestly fashion and I have two questions that I will simply raise and will not attempt to answer because I don't have the answers to either one of them, but here are my two questions. What does it mean what does it mean that will that we will reign not just submit to Christ in his earthly kingdom and acknowledge him as Lord and in his Lordship. It is as we will reign, we will reign. We shall reign on the earth.

So my question what is it mean that we will reign in question number two went. When will we reign. When will we reign and that really gets into questions of eschatology is simply raise the questions and draw your attention to it and and move on, whatever that is it's it's a spiritual is a spiritual dimension to it.

You remember when Pilate was questioning Jesus about so you're a king, Jesus is all yes I am a king.

But my kingdom is not of this world, my kingdom is not of this world. Jesus was making reference to a spiritual kingdom, a kingdom where he rules and reigns in the hearts of men and women and I think that has to be part of our consideration as we are trying to answer the question, what is it mean that we will reign and where will we reign Revelation chapter 5 concludes with the entirety of creation responding to the adoration and the four living creatures and the 24 elders notice with me in verse 11. John says, then I looked and I heard the voice of many angels around the throne, the four living creatures and the elders.

The number of them, and again in the number of them the antecedent to them is the angel. The number of them was 10,00010,000, and thousands of thousands now you number crunchers. The point of that language is to communicate to you that the number of angels is innumerable. They cannot be counted and then we must ask the question will why are angels engaged in worship. Angels are not the recipients of salvation angels are redeemed.

God had no plan to redeem fallen Angels. Peter tells us that the Angels long to look into this matter of salvation. They were curious about it. They wanted understand, so they're not engaged in worship for their own personal benefit, but you remember, Jesus told us that the angels in heaven rejoice over one sinner who repents so the Angels are caused to warship God and the Lord Jesus for the manifestation of his saving work. So even though they're not the recipients of salvation. They have not been redeem. They are engaged in worship and it seems to me that I want to make too much of it but there's an order here that the angels are mentioned after the church is mentioned that the Angels are informed they learn about worship and why there is worship going on. Why Jesus is being warship from the redeemed church and they take their cue from that perhaps then I looked and I heard the voice of many angels around the throne, the living creatures who were they again they are the seraphim of God.

Those special creatures of God. Those fearsome awesome holy creatures that God created for the purpose of serving him in worship and the elders. The elders remember the 24 elders sitting upon 24 thrones and scholars tell us that they are the representative of the redeemed church representative of the redeemed church throughout all the ages made up of the 12 patriarchs, the old covenant people of God included with the 12 apostles 12 and 12, May 24 I had someone ask me a question recently and it was a good question. Well, if there are these thrones and are 24 people sitting on the throne. The patriarchs and the apostles. Where is the place for Paul the apostle the apostle Paul is he one of the 12 and that there was a good question because of the significant place that he's played in the giving of the canon of Scripture in his the places he holds in the church history of the church so angels innumerable host of angels around the throne, living creatures. The seraph of God and then the elders and what are they doing verse 12 says they are saying with a loud voice, worthy is the Lamb. The focus is still upon God the son, the Lamb, the Redeemer worthy is the Lamb again who was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and blessing worthy to receive and there are seven things seven fold expression of praise and again you know that seven is a number of completion that he's worthy of the complete expression in form of worship, worthy is the Lamb again who was slain, but is not dead he is glorified in heaven.

He's very bears the marks of his death, five bleeding wounds. He bears received on Calvary.

The hymn writer says, but here the Angels compose and they sing a hymn dedicated again, not to God but to the Lamb.

These heavenly angels, heavenly beings, these angels they name the Lamb being worthy of worship twice in this context. Chapter 4 verse 11 chapter 5 in verse nine, chapter 5. Here in verse 12.

While I will draw your attention to chapter 4 verse 11 where God the father is warship because of creation, but twice in chapter 5, God the son, the Lamb worshiped because of his work in redemption so the church has cause for worship for God's two great acts number one is active creation. He's worthy of worship. Because of that buddies worthy of worship in redemption in the work that the sun has accomplished. Notice verse 13. Notice how all created the entire created order is summoned to worship and every creature which is in heaven and on earth and under the earth and such as are in the sea and all that are in them. I heard saying blessing and honor and glory and power be to who be to him who sits on the throne worship of God Almighty and to the Lamb forever and ever see any notion that God this risk son and God the father were not exactly on the same page when it came to the work of redemption are completely erroneous.

There is perfect harmony in the Godhead, even as I prayed earlier in the service.

I've read different people arguing that that that there was an unwillingness on Christ's part in the father had to persuade him and he had to offer them this in order for him to do it no no, the father is to be worshiped and all of the created order all in heaven all on earth: the sea everywhere there is to be blessing and honor and glory and power be to him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb for how long. Forever and ever forever and ever.

In the doxology evokes an affirmative amen from the representatives that are surrounding God's throne. Notice verse 14 then the four living creatures said amen and the 24 elders fell down and worshiped him, who lives forever and ever.

I trust that so far in our working through our study the book of the Revelation that your perspective has been challenged and perhaps altered a bit because those who are not familiar with the content of the book of the Revelation tend to think that the book of Revelation is solely about end times. What's going to happen in the future will here we are at the end of chapter 5. What has been dominant throughout our study of these five chapters over many sermons that is taken for us to get this far. Our focus is been upon God. Our focus is been on the Lord Jesus Christ, which shouldn't surprise us because John says to us in verse one of chapter 1 the revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants things which must take place. It's the Revelation of Jesus Christ, so Jesus Christ is being revealed to us. He's being laid before set before us on the pages of Scripture and it is a terrible hermeneutic that Mrs. Christ in the book of the Revelation so we have and I have labored hard to be faithful to the text and set before you. What is here and the Lord Jesus Christ is set before us, and I don't know. Again I trust.

If you are a child of God in your heart has. It is reverberating as those around that throne. You see this scene and when you see what's going on in your captured by the vision you say what is recorded here that the four living creatures that we say amen man give your affirmation to this because again, if you are of the redeemed you been purchased by the Lord Jesus Christ. He shed his blood for you. This is what you will be doing in eternity again forever and forever as we conclude.

Let me read the words of this hymn of Charles Wesley, all for a thousand tongues to sign. You know it's unrealistic, but it is an expression of a heart that's full of Thanksgiving and praise and a desire to worship God. And it's saying all for a thousand voices of thousand tongues to sing. Charles Wesley says over a thousand tongues to sing my great Redeemer's praise the glories of my God and King, the triumphs of his grace my gracious master and my God assist me to proclaim to spread through all the earth abroad. The honors of thy name Jesus us the name that charms our fears that bids our sorrow cease to his music in the sinners here to his life and health and peace. He breaks the power of canceled sin, he sets the prisoner free his blood can make file this claim is blood available for me here him, ye death is praise you done your loosen tongues employ, ye blind, behold, your Savior, and leap ye Lane for joy, shall we pray father, thank you for a heart and for the way you have constituted us to engage our being in worship of you. How could a redeemed center do anything but have a heart and a desire to extol into worship and praise you will father and you, Lord Jesus, how we thank you for the redeeming work of our Savior and how that work has included us that we have been bought and purchased with the precious blood of the Lord Jesus Christ fill our hearts with worship of him increase our desire increase our ability to engage our hearts in this most notable activity.

Thank you for the word of God, thank you for revealing this portion of your word to us continue to bless us as we study this precious book.

We pray in Jesus name, amen


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