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  • Writer's pictureJan Weihl

God's Throne (Revelation 4)

After John is temporarily raptured in Revelation 4, he sees the throne of God. He quickly becomes absolutely fixated on God's throne. Everything is described in relation to God's throne. But the question I want to ask is, "Why is John shown God's throne?"

John first sees the throne of God with God the Father sitting on it. God the Father appears as a bright light matching the colors of two of the stones of the high priest's breast plate which symbolized Reuben, Jacob's oldest son, and Benjamin, Jacob's youngest son. It's interesting that God's very appearance encompasses the stones representing the first and last tribes of Israel. Clearly, God is not done with Israel.

Revelation 4:3 And He who was sitting was like a jasper stone and sardius in appearance.

Next John notes that the throne of God is encircled by a rainbow. This rainbow which God placed around His on throne is a reminder of the covenant He made to never again destroy the earth and all flesh with a flood. The rainbow shows that God will limit Himself according to His own promise.

Genesis 9:13-15 I set My bow in the cloud, and it shall be for a sign of a covenant between Me and the earth. It shall come about, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the bow will be seen in the cloud, and I will remember My covenant, which is between Me and you and every living creature of all flesh, and never again shall the water become a flood to destroy all flesh.

However, the rainbow does not mean that God will not punish sin. Out from the throne comes lighting and thunder representing God's authority, power, and judgment. John also saw seven lamps burning before the throne representing the Holy Spirit of God and that He sees everything that happens. Nothing is hidden from His sight.

So we can't look at the rainbow alone without also remembering God's lightning and thunder.

Revelation 4:5 Out from the throne comes flashes of lightning and sounds and peals of thunder. And there were seven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God.

The vision of God's throne which John is privileged to see and write about is a reminder of God's mercy and grace as well as His judgment.

We can count on God to keep His promises, His covenant.

Because of the rainbow, we can count on God to never destroy all flesh with a flood again.

But because of the lightning and sounds of thunder, and lamps burning before the throne, we can also count on God's justice to not let sin go unpunished. In His great mercy and amazing grace, He will give everyone every chance to repent from their sins and turn to Him. But those who refuse to acknowledge sin and instead go on pridefully living by their own rules, will face God's condemnation and punishment. We can count on that promise too.

I believe John was given this glimpse of heaven as assurance that God will carry out His judgment justly, after giving everyone every opportunity to repent and escape before the 7-year period of judgment comes upon this whole earth.

Today, as we look around, it is clear in every direction that we are getting closer and closer to the end of the Church Age and the beginning of God's 7-year period of judgment upon this earth. Are you making yourself ready to stand before the One True God, the judge of all the earth?

Dear Lord, Thank you that You are so patient and long suffering not wanting anyone to perish. But Lord thank you also that You are righteous and fair and will render judgment against those who refuse to accept your definition of sin and pridefully live by their own rules. Lord, I pray that those who are rejecting You would be filled with the desire to turn to You above all else. Lord, I pray that my behavior and my words would draw others to You rather than turning them away. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.

Jan Weihl

Living Word Ministries

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