Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Practicing for Heaven!

Revelation 4

In the center, around the throne, were four living creatures, and they were covered with eyes, in front and in back. 7 The first living creature was like a lion, the second was like an ox, the third had a face like a man, the fourth was like a flying eagle. 8 Each of the four living creatures had six wings and was covered with eyes all around, even under its wings. Day and night they never stop saying: "‘Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty,'
who was, and is, and is to come.”

Context:Moving from the conditions within the churches in Asia to the future of the universal church, John sees the course of coming events in a way similar to Daniel and Ezekiel. Many of these passages contain clear spiritual teachings, but others seem beyond our ability to understand. The clear teaching of this book is that God will defeat all evil in the end. We must live in obedience to Jesus Christ, the coming Conqueror and Judge.

Chapters 4 and 5 give us a glimpse of Christ’s glory. Here we see into the throne room of heaven. God is on the throne and orchestrating all the events that John will record. The world is not spinning out of control; the God of creation will carry out his plans as Christ initiates the final battle with the forces of evil. John shows us heaven before showing us earth so that we will not be frightened by future events.

Worship takes our minds off our problems and focuses them on God. Worship leads us from individual meditation to corporate worship. Worship causes us to consider and appreciate God’s character. Worship lifts our perspective.

When we wonder what heaven is like this chapter gives us a picture. At the heart of heaven is worship. Each creature and spirit in heaven is focused on one thing, praising God. We were made to praise God. Someone has said when we worship here on earth it is just practice for heaven. As the popular song "Come Now is the Time To Worship" goes,

"One day every tongue will confess You are God.
One day every knee will bow.
Still the greatest treasure remains for those
Who gladly choose You now!"

Since worship is the primary thing we will doing in heaven, doesn't it make sense that we get pretty good at it now. Worship is not just what we do on Sunday, but every day of the week. Worship does not just happen in the pews, but in the office, in the family room, and wherever we find ourselves.

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