(From radio broadcast of Bro. Julius Adewumi)
Revelation chapter 4
We are going through the book of revelation, and now chapter 4. As the word of God said, “blessed is he that readeth and they that hear the words of this prophecy”. You are blessed for reading this.
I said in the beginning of this series, God is the author of the book of revelation. He also authored the book of Genesis, because He was the only one that was there when Adam was created and He revealed it to Moses. He gave us the beginning of all things on the earth, and He also gave us the ending of all things as we see in this book of Revelation.
Chapter 4: “After this I looked, and behold a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither and I will show thee things which must be hereafter”. Now the first thing you should notice in this verse is that he saw a door open in heaven, which means he was still here physically on the physical earth when he saw the vision of the Lord Jesus Christ manifested to him. In chapter one, he heard a voice behind him like the voice of a trumpet.
“I was in the spirit on the Lord’s day and heard behind me a great voice as of a trumpet, saying I am Alpha and Omega”. When the Lord manifested and spoke John, he said it sounded like the voice of a trumpet. He went further and said in verse 2 “Immediately I was in the spirit “; what does that mean that he was in the spirit? Remember in chapter 1, verse 10, he said he was in the spirit on the Lord’s Day. That is different from this “I was in the spirit” which he was talking about here in chapter 4. When he said in chapter 1 that he was in the spirit on the Lord’s Day, he was actually saying he was in prayer, or he was fasting or he was meditating on the things of God. It could be said that you are in the spirit, because the bible says, “We should walk in the spirit and not in the flesh”. Whereas in this chapter 4 when he said “immediately I was in the spirit”, it means he was taken out of his body into the spirit: He was caught up out of the body, he was no more in the physical body but his spirit was out of the body.
“And behold a throne was set in heaven and one sat on the throne”.
“And he that sat on the throne was to look upon like a jasper and a sardine stone and there was a rainbow round about the throne, in sight like an emerald. And round about the throne were four and twenty seats, and upon the seats I saw four and twenty elders sitting, clothed in white raiment, and they had on their heads crowns of gold”. Now let’s talk about these elders. When apostle John said he saw elders, it means the way they looked, they were not angels but they were human beings. That’s why he called them elders and they looked like older men, compared to his age.
Let’s talk about the throne that was set in heaven. It says I will show you things that are to come. God indeed was showing to apostle John what is being staged in heaven or what will be staged in heaven. Because when you begin to go further in the chapter, you will see that the Lamb of God that came forth had already been slain and crucified and died for us. The lamb took the book out of the hand of the one that sat upon the throne. That was the beginning of the redemption process for humanity or the beginning of the process of taking over the earth. So what the Lord was showing to John in this particular setting where he said he saw elders sitting, symbolizes how God has elevated some brethren, some elders. Now who are these elders elevated to sit around His throne? Whether they are really sitting right now, or it is in the future does not really matter. They will sit round about the throne. It is either futuristic or something that is already taking place now, but he called them elders to show that they are human beings. Who can these elders be? You can look at the bible and speculate because their names were not given. If you look at the Old Testament before the Lord Jesus Christ came, you can see those that are heroes of the bible that you can say they pleased God, from Adam, through the Old Testament prophets, through to the time of our Lord Jesus Christ. Now if we say these 24 elders are representatives of those heroes of the bible that have passed on, if we take that stand, then we would be asking how come that they are now sitting around the throne of God? Are they in soul/spirit form, or human beings that have been resurrected and taken up, or are they just others that we do not know? Well, I will like to take the position that they are representing elders from the time of Adam, which I am not going to give names. I can only speculate whom I think would be in those twenty-four, but they would be elders resurrected with the Lord Jesus Christ when He resurrected in Matthew chapter 27. In Mathew 27:52-53, we see the story of when the Lord Jesus Christ resurrected; the graves of some saints where opened in the Palestine area and they came out of their graves. Now I believe and from the revelation God has given to us that those saints that came out of their graves after the Lord Jesus resurrected, didn’t go back to the graves. Since they didn’t go back to the graves, they must have gone up with him invisible to us but they must have gone up with Him to heaven.
Now when we say “gone up with him to heaven”, it means they were not in heaven before. They were in a resting place for the dead in Christ or for the dead saints, which we call Paradise. Their spirits were resting in paradise and you will see the difference in chapter 5 where the souls under the altar of God cried unto God to avenge them. Being under the altar means that they were not in the same heavenly place where the throne of God was set but they were not on earth; they were below the throne of God. That is what we call Paradise, where the spirits are being kept until the day of resurrection.
Now the Lord Jesus Christ made it known to us. When He came out of the grave by Himself and took His physical body out of the grave he went up into the sky. By going up into the sky after He resurrected, shows to us that there is a different place where the saints of God are kept.
Remember the Lord said, “no man has ascended up to heaven but he that came down from heaven”. (Jn.3: 13). That is, even those who leave this planet without seeing death such as Elijah, and Enoch, are in a separate location. And where the Lord Jesus Christ went up into, is separate from where the souls of them that are dead are resting. Their bodies would be in the grave but their spirits would be somewhere in between the sky- heaven that Christ went to and the physical earth where we are.
Now let’s go further and see who are these twenty-four elders, I can only speculate that they have to be some of the heroes of the bible from the time of Adam; pick some twenty-four that you’ve read about that pleased God so much and your guess would be just as good as mine. The bible said they were elders, which means they were human beings. In another bible verse where these elders were speaking, they said “Thou hast redeemed us unto our God” which means they were human beings. (Rev.5: 9).
Now let’s go on in verse 5: “I saw four and twenty elders sitting, clothed in white raiment”. White raiment also symbolizes righteousness, which means they were saints just like we are. “And they had on their heads crowns of gold.” They were also given crowns just like we also will receive crowns from the Lord Jesus Christ. Verse 5, “And out of the throne proceeded lightening and thundering and voices and there were seven lamps of fire burning before the throne which are the seven spirits of God. And before the throne there was a sea of glass like unto crystal”.
Now I want you to take note of that verse 6, it said, “Before the throne there was a sea of glass like unto crystal, and in the midst of the throne and round about the throne, were four beasts full of eyes before and behind”.
When I say take note of the crystal, the sea of glass before the throne, you will see that when we go to some other bible verses in chapter 15, where some saints were brought up to heaven and they were standing on the sea of glass before the throne of God, it makes us to know that they were no more on the planet earth by the time that they were on the sea of glass. Because they were said to be on the sea of glass makes us to know that there must have been a translation from the physical earth to that sea of glass. If they were beheaded, either they were resurrected, or their spirits were caught up to heaven but they were standing on the sea of glass that is before the throne of God. That is why I said take note of that sea of glass. When you see the saints in chapter 15 standing upon the sea of glass it will make us to be able to pin-point the time table of events that makes them appear there, just before the wrath of God was poured upon the earth in chapter 16.
Let’s talk about these four beasts. What do these represent? Were they just beasts or they were just symbolizing something? Many bible scholars have said these four beasts actually are symbolizing something. However, when the Lord manifested in the book of Ezekiel, the prophet also saw beasts that he called cherubs, which had four faces. There are different beings that God has created.
In verse 7 it says “And the first beast was like a lion, and the second beast like a calf, and the third beast had a face as a man, and the fourth beast was like a flying eagle and the four beasts had each of them six wings about him and they were full of eyes within; and they rested not day and night, saying, Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come.”
When you look at revelation chapter 1 you see the same manifestation: It said the Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come: who was he? It was the Lord Jesus Christ that manifested in Revelation chapter 1 to the apostle John and He said He is Alpha and Omega. “I am Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End, who was, and is, and is to come”. That was the Lord Jesus Christ.
He was: we use past tense for somebody that dies. That was why He used the past tense “he was”, to make us know that it was the one that was on the throne that came as the Lord Jesus Christ who died on the cross.
“He is”: it means that He rose again from the dead and is still alive today, that is what “He is” means. He rose from the dead and is still alive today. It was the Lord Jesus Christ who came and died on the cross, and rose again that is represented by “He was, and is”.
Now who is to come? He is the one to come because we are expecting Him again to come back because He went away to heaven and said I will come again and the two angels said “this same Jesus who went up before you will come again in like manner”, (Acts. 1:11), and we are all expecting the Lord Jesus Christ to come back. So He used those three phrases to describe Himself as “He was”, someone that died, “He is”, someone that is still alive because He rose again, “and he is to come”, someone that is being expected to come back. It is that same person that is on the throne in Revelation chapter 4. It makes us know who is actually sitting on the throne that is being called Holy, Holy, Holy; Lord God Almighty. It is the Lord Jesus Christ who was, and is, and is to come, who is God Almighty. So you can see that the Godhead is one; one Spirit that manifested to mankind, He was, and is, and is to come.
Verse 9 said “And when those beasts give glory and honor and thanks to Him that sat on the throne who liveth forever and ever, the four and twenty elders fall down before Him that sat on the throne and worshipped Him that liveth forever and ever, and cast their crowns before the throne, saying “thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honor and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created”.
That is the end of chapter 4 and what is this chapter telling us
The Lord is revealing in this chapter the throne was set in heaven, and God Almighty was sitting upon the throne. He was to look upon like a jasper and sardine stone, and a rainbow round about it. So we know Deity was sitting upon it. But who was this Deity upon the throne? The bible says the four beasts were calling him Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God Almighty, so we know it was God Almighty that was on the throne. But it also says He was, and is, and is to come. Well, if He is the Lord God Almighty that was, and is, and is to come, that must be the Lord Jesus Christ that died and rose again, and is coming back. Do you understand what I am saying? You may say, how could He be? He called Himself the Son and He is the Father? My answer is: Why would He not be the Father? Think about it! How many Almighty do we have? If the one on the throne is Almighty God, and if He was, and is, and He that is to come! When did His Father come to die? It was the Lord Jesus Christ that was, and is, and is to come, He is the only one that came and died on the cross and rose again, that is why He said I, and my Father are one. It is the same person.
Apostle Paul said it is a Great mystery! (1Tim.3: 16) “God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.”
I did not write the above verse in the bible. I am just interpreting it. It was God Almighty that was, and is, and is to come. I pray that the Lord would open your understanding so that you would be able to see this revelation that the Lord Jesus Christ whom we are serving is God Almighty, whom the whole world has been calling God, who manifested to us in the human flesh.
One more thing, the four and twenty elders were worshipping this person on the throne calling Him God Almighty, and they said He created all things, and for His pleasure, all things were created; that was God Almighty indeed. Now remember, you cannot worship two people or two different people; however, if the president that you worship suddenly goes to a room and changes his clothes and put on a clothe like the uniform of a soldier and you know he is the president, you can still worship him, because it is the same president even though he is now dressed like a military man. You can still worship him because you know who he is.
Now, that is what is going on. God Almighty on the throne will manifest again in another form in a moment when we get to chapter 5 and I believe the Lord will open your understanding to be able to see this, because it was the same Lord Jesus Christ who manifested, who was God Almighty that came to the world and rose again and went up to heaven, and He said where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.
See? The bible is actually a revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ; a revelation of God manifesting to save mankind, because it was only God that had the patience to save mankind: no angel can do it, He Himself who is the most gentle, the most forgiving, the most merciful. He is the one that put away our sins and he came, not imputing our sins unto us, to reconcile us unto Himself according to the scriptures. That is what the bible is telling us. God gave us the ministry of reconciliation, not imputing sin unto mankind, but calling you to come back unto Him. He said, “come unto me all ye that labor and are heavy laden and I will give you rest.” In the book of Isaiah, He said, “though you sins be as scarlet they shall be as white as snow”. The same God Almighty that manifested to Isaiah the prophet is the same God that came and said “come unto me all ye that labor and are heavy laden and I will give you rest”. He didn’t say my Father will give you rest, He said that I will give you rest. So it is the Father that manifested in the form of the Son. I pray that the Lord will open your understanding so that you will understand this revelation that Jesus is God manifested in the flesh.
God is revealing to us that the twenty-four elders that are sitting around the throne, that are worshipping Him and are calling Him Lord God Almighty, are human beings whom God has elevated, and that is part of the plan of God. God is going to dwell among men. In the book of Revelation chapter 21 verse 3 you will see the plan being manifested that God is going to dwell among men and we shall see Him. This is a validation here in Revelation chapter 4 that the twenty-four elders have their seats round about that throne worshipping the God Almighty that sat on the throne.
He came in form of a human being to put on the flesh and die like a human being and rose again by Himself as God, and is coming back to make us to be like Him.
Isn’t that a great thing that God has elevated man? In the book of Psalms 8 verse 6, King David said that God has exalted man above all that He has created. God has a plan for mankind; He exalted man above all the other things that God has created.
Psalm 8:5-6: “Thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour. Thou madest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands: thou hast put all things under his feet”.
Won’t you fear this God and accept Jesus as your Lord and savior if you have not done this already, and be part of this great plan of God for mankind? Those who are not, will be the weeds to be cleaned out of this garden of God.
I pray that the Lord will kindle in your heart the desire to seek him more, and to be a partaker of his beautiful plan for mankind.
God bless you.
Bro. Julius Adewumi
Gospel Distribution Ministry
Box 30387, Phoenix
AZ 85046, USA.
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