Be sure and listen to the great songs to lift your spirit
A Book, A Lion and A Lamb
“And I saw in the right hand of him that sat on the throne a book written within and on the backside, sealed with seven seals. And I saw a strong angel proclaiming with a loud voice, Who is worthy to open the book, and to loose the seals thereof? And no man in heaven, nor in earth, neither under the earth, was able to open the book, neither to look thereon. And I wept much, because no man was found worthy to open and to read the book, neither to look thereon. And one of the elders saith unto me, Weep not: behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, hath prevailed to open the book, and to loose the seven seals thereof. 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 horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth.” (Revelation 5:1-6).
The scene in heaven continues. We see a book, a lion, and a lamb. John’s attention shifts from the heavenly choir surrounding the throne, back to the One sitting on the throne and to the book in His hand. The book is in His “right hand,” and is “written within and on the backside…” and sealed with “seven seals” (v.1).
We have already commented on the “right hand” (v.1). It symbolizes power, security, and favor. Since no one in heaven or earth was worthy to open the book or look thereon, we can be assured that the contents of that book were the very words of Him who held it in His hand.
This book contained all the Old Testament prophecies concerning the Day of the Lord. The book contained writings which no man or angel had seen, as yet. Daniel was told to seal the book, for it concerned the end time. “But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased” (Daniel 12:4). “And he said, Go thy way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end” (Daniel 12:9).
The time has come in the Revelation to open the book, and only the Lion of the tribe of Judah is worthy to open its seals. The fact that the book was written within and without, implies that it is filled with the wrath of God and His judgments. The seven seals simply show that its contents were complete and secure until the appointed time. The book was a roll or scroll. Imagine a scroll about seven feet long and twelve inches wide. Once the scribe finished writing on both sides, he rolled it about twelve inches and put a seal on the top and bottom rolls, and then he rolled it another twelve inches and placed seals again on the top and bottom. He continued this until all seven feet were rolled together with seven seals on it. This is how the book looked to John.
John“wept” when no one could be found worthy to open the book (v.4). This shows the sinfulness and hopelessness of man without the mercy and grace of God. In all creation, no one was worthy to open the book. Who is worthy to open the book and unleash these judgments on men and devils? What man could claim to be worthy to execute judgment on sin? The answer is no one. In doing so, he would condemn himself. If no one could be found, paradise was indeed lost and could never be regained. All the promises of God and the hopes for mankind were for naught, if no one could be found. Not only was no one worthy to open the book; no one was worthy to look upon it! “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
John is comforted and told not to weep for “…the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, hath prevailed to open the book, and to loose the seven seals thereof” (v.5). The lion was the symbol of a king and of the tribe of Judah. It was from this tribe Israel’s king was to come. “Judah is a lion’s whelp…” (Genesis 49:9).
Not only is He of Judah, but also He is the “Root of David.” He is David’s promised Son who would rule forever over a just and righteous kingdom. This is He of whom all the prophets spoke. He is the one subject of the Law of Moses, of the Psalms, and of the Prophets! In the volume of the book it is written of Him! Weep not John, for the One who came to His own, and they knew Him not has prevailed and is worthy to open the book!!
The Lamb had prevailed! He overcame temptation in the wilderness as the “Son of Man” by obeying the Word of God. He overcame in Gethsemane through prevailing prayer. He overcame at Calvaryby yielding Himself to the death of the cross, and He overcame the grave by His power over death. Weep not! The Lamb is worthy and has prevailed!
John looks and sees in the “midst of the throne” (v.6), not a Lion, but a Lamb as it had been slain. The Lamb that had been slain was now standing! He is the resurrected Christ, and so shall He be throughout all eternity. He will be “as a Lamb that had been slain.” One should run the cross references on the title, “the Lamb.”John refers to Him in his Gospel in chapter 1:29, 36.
In Revelation He is called the Lamb over 25 times!Paul never uses that title in any of his church epistles. This ought to convince anyone that the title is associated with Israel and her redemption. InJohn’s gospel, He is the Lamb that takes away the sin of the world. In the Revelation, He completes that purpose.
Pastor Ken Blue was born in Boswell, Ark. In 1955 he accepted Christ as his Savior. He and his wife Joyce were married in 1955. They have 5 children. He graduated from Midwestern Baptist Bible College in 1969 and started the Open Door Baptist Church in Lynnwood, Wa. where he pastored for 39 years. Because of health issues (ALS) he was forced to resign as pastor. It is his desire to continue to be used of God to help pastors and believers through this ministry.