Our passage today opens up with the transportation of John to the heavenly realm. Here he has an incredible vision of the throne-room of God. There are three things that I would like to point out from this incredible vision: beauty, glory, and worship.
If you’re like me, as you read the description of God’s throne-room, you have to look up the references to the adornments—“What’s a sardius?”. We can easily get stuck in the mire of descriptors, while missing the beauty of the whole scene. What John saw was beautiful and majestic. I dare say that as he wrote down this vision, he sought hard for words to describe what he saw and every word fell incomprehensibly short. Our God is mind-blowingly beautiful and amazingly creative. Although we can make an idol of aesthetics and beauty, it is only because it’s void of His Holy presence. We long for the day when all of our senses become overwhelmed. Let us not sinfully strive to gratify our senses because it will only ever be a pitiful attempt compared to the day when we behold his glory.
Glory in the Old Testament Hebrew possesses the idea of ‘heaviness’ or ‘weight.’ This is where we get the idea of the expression “The weight of His glory.” When we truly understand the awesomeness of God’s glory, as if we beheld it in this marvelous scene, it creates in us reverence and fear. The weight of glory is not burdensome, instead, it is a reminder we shall not pursue that which violates God’s definition of goodness. Being weighed down grounds us in humility. God is the only One worthy of glory. With this heavenly vision in mind, and the display of God’s power, we should shudder at the idea of robbing God of even an ounce of the glory due Him.
This vision illustrates the worship due to God. Although we may not understand the interpretive details of every part of this vision, we understand everything in this vision is directed in worship to the Lord. This scene pictures God in aesthetic beauty, in His powerful, majestic glory, and it should drive us to worship Him. Revelation is a difficult book to understand. Many of it’s details are open for debate, but its conclusion is not. All of creation is heading toward one end, when we shall all be on our knees in worship to King Jesus, the Redeemer who will present His beautiful bride to God the Father. If, in the end, we are on our knees in worship to Jesus, why not live that way now?
As I read Revelation 4 I am reminded of the old hymn, All Hail the Power of Jesus’ Name. The language is old and may require some thought, but like any good poetry, it’s worth the effort. In light of this passage and our discussion, listen to this song and worship our wonderful, mighty God.
By: Tyler Short — Connections Ministry Associate