Monday, October 20, 2014

And No One Was Able To Open The Scroll

Last week I was speaking to a friend about the need for crisis in the growth process. In order for a man to change he must experience a crisis. The soil must be turned over for seed to be buried and roots to properly form.

Here in Revelation chapter 5 we see a fundamental crisis of cosmic proportions.

"Then I saw in the right hand of him who was seated on the throne a scroll written within and on the back, sealed with seven seals. And I saw a mighty angel proclaiming with a loud voice, 'Who is worthy to open the scroll and break its seals?' And no one in heaven or on earth or under the earth was able to open the scroll or to look into it, and I began to weep loudly because no one was found worthy to open the scroll or to look into it." - Revelation 5:1-4 ESV

The Apostle John is older now and he is in prison on Patmos. He sees Jesus and in chapter 4 he is whisked away into Heaven to a place outside of time. Now he finds himself weeping. Does he even know why? I imagine only partially. No one else there is weeping.

If you find yourself in Heaven and there is a problem no one else can solve that is truly something to cry about. Why do we cry on Earth? Unsolvable dilemmas do it to us. Sadness is our emotional response to unattainable victory. Death makes us cry. loss makes us cry. Even victory makes us cry at times because the impossible has happened and we somehow know it is a fleeting moment that we can't hold unto so the tears come.

Children cry at the divorce of their parents. It is an unsolvable dilemma for their little lives. When the people who should love you forever say that they can't love each anymore it is like being in Heaven and hearing that no one is worthy.

"And one of the elders said to me, 'Weep no more; behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has conquered, so that he can open the scroll and its seven seals.' And between the throne and the four living creatures and among the elders I saw a Lamb standing, as though it had been slain, with seven horns and with seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth. And he went and took the scroll from the right hand of him who was seated on the throne. And when he had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each holding a harp, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints. And they sang a new song, saying,

'Worthy are you to take the scroll and to open its seals, for you were slain, and by your blood you ransomed people for God from every tribe and language and people and nation, and you have made them a kingdom and priests to our God, and they shall reign on the earth.' " - Revelation 5:5-10 ESV

Who solves the crisis? Jesus does. Who mends our broken heart? Jesus does. He is the answer. He answers the crisis in Heaven and He answers the crisis on Earth inside our heart.

"Then I looked, and I heard around the throne and the living creatures and the elders the voice of many angels, numbering myriads of myriads and thousands of thousands, saying with a loud voice, 'Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!' And I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea, and all that is in them, saying, 'To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be blessing and honor and glory and might forever and ever!' And the four living creatures said, 'Amen!' and the elders fell down and worshiped." - Revelation 5:11-14 ESV

John was plucked out of time but everyone else there knew. This is our future. We read about an event that hasn't happened yet. This is us singing. If you know Jesus you will be there to see this and sing this song. We are even given the words ahead of time so we can rehearse.

Like John we cry at times for the dilemmas we face and see other people face but as believers there is a solution that drys our tears. His name is Jesus.

Every hospital room in the world would be a better place if His name was mentioned. Every graveside a lighter sorrow if He was involved in that life that now only in our memory.

People are out there crying and they have every reason to cry. Let's go put our hand on their shoulder and say, 'Weep no more; behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has conquered.' If they receive this truth then there will be a day when all of their tears will be wiped away.

The cross is at the heart of every spiritual transformation. Boys become men when they embrace the great commission. It is the present day crisis that produces spiritual maturity in those that will stand up and answer the call.


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