No doubt about it; under Roman Emperor Domitian Christianity was under attack. And one of the first things John is shown in his heavenly vision is a throne. This is a throne higher and mightier than the throne of
– this is the throne of heaven. And at a time when Christians might have been
wondering, Is God still on the throne? Revelation leaves no doubt. Rome
One of my favorite scenes is when the angel proclaims: Who is worthy to break the seals and open the scroll? (5:2). For a time no one answers, and John weeps. Then one of the elders speaks: The Lion of the tribe of Judah . . . He is able (v. 5). And John turns expecting to see a lion, but instead: Then I saw a Lamb, looking as if it had been slain, standing at the center of the throne (v. 6).
Not only is there a throne, encircled with a rainbow, (reminiscent of Noah’s story of God’s preservation in Genesis 6-9); the throne is not empty – in chapter 4 a majestic, heavenly figure is sitting on it. In chapter 5 the one sitting on the throne is none other than Jesus Christ the Lamb of God. John illustrates that God has come through for his people in the past and will again. To John, all of this is evidence that God and not Rome is in control.
TODAY’S MEDITATIONHave you ever felt like the throne is empty? It’s not. What does it mean to your faith to know that God reigns?