The Salvation of the Lamb (Revelation 7:9-17)
We have been saved through the actions of Jesus Christ.
When Revelation was written, the church was facing severe persecution. Many saints were being killed for their faith, and they needed some hope that enduring was worth the price. God intends to display hope by showing heaven to these Christians.
The Lamb Brought Salvation for Anyone, v 9
John looked and saw a great multitude no one could number. Those in this multitude came from all nations, tribes, peoples, and tongues. People from every nation, tribe, and language can be saved by the Lamb. God did not specify one group to receive salvation and another group to be lost. Anyone who desires to be saved can be, because salvation is for all people.
Those in this multitude are standing before the throne and the Lamb—Since God’s throne is in heaven (4:2), this multitude is standing in heaven.
These individuals are clothed with white robes. Since white denotes purity, these individuals are pure. Nothing impure or unclean will enter heaven (Revelation 21:27).
This multitude carried palm branches in their hands. Palm branches were often used in celebration, e g., when Jesus triumphantly entered Jerusalem, many laid palm branches in front of him (John 12:13). This group is celebrating their salvation.
Salvation is a gift which can belong to anyone—Anyone who chooses can be saved. The Great Commission was to make disciples “of all the nations” (Matthew 28:19). “Truly I understand that God shows no partiality, but in every nation anyone who fears him and does what is right is acceptable to him” (Acts 10:34-35).
God will save anyone who comes to him. Has God saved you?
The Lamb Brings Salvation from the Almighty, v 10
This great multitude cried out, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!”
Salvation originates with God. “Truly in the LORD our God is the salvation of Israel” (Jeremiah 3:23). “The salvation of the righteous is from the LORD; he is their stronghold in the time of trouble” (Psalm 37:39).
Salvation comes through the Lamb, Jesus. There is no other name besides “Jesus” by which people can be saved (Acts 4:12). “We believe that we will be saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus” (Acts 15:11).
Salvation’s belonging to God has some practical applications. God can set the requirements for salvation–God can determine who is and who is not saved. Only God can save—Money, power, and the like cannot save from sin.
The Lamb’s Salvation Brings Adoration, vv 11-12
As the redeemed praise God, the heavenly beings begin praising him as well. All the angels, the 24 elders, and the four living beings assemble around God’s throne. They worship God by ascribing to him blessing, glory, wisdom, thanksgiving, honor, power, and might.
God’s salvation of man causes the heavenly beings to worship. “There will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance” (Luke 15:7). “There is joy before the angels of God over one sinner who repents” (Luke 15:10).
If these heavenly beings worship over man’s salvation, man surely should worship God for salvation. “May all who seek you rejoice and be glad in you!’” (Psalm 70:4). “Oh come, let us sing to the LORD; let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation!” (Psalm 95:1).
Are you praising God because of your salvation?
The Lamb’s Salvation is from His Blood, vv 13-14
One of the elders asked John where this multitude came from. John confesses that he does not know.
The elder answers that they came from the great tribulation and washed their robes in the Lamb’s blood. These saints endured great tribulation. When Revelation was written, the saints were enduring great persecution—These Christians had to endure in spite of these persecutions. We may suffer persecution because of our salvation—“All who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted” (2 Timothy 3:12).
These saints had made their robes white in the Lamb’s blood. When the Lamb first appears in Revelation, he appears as though he had been slain (Revelation 5:6). Salvation is impossible without the Lamb’s blood. “Without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins” (Hebrews 9:22). “If we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin” (1 John 1:7).
Have you been cleansed by the Lamb’s blood?
The Lamb’s Salvation Brings Blessing, vv 15-17
John portrays the blessings of heaven.
- Those in heaven are before God’s throne. They are with the Lord. “We will always be with the Lord” (1 Thessalonians 4:17).
- The saved serve God day and night—In heaven, we will worship and serve God.
- God will make his home with us.
- We shall have no need—we shall not hunger, thirst, nor have any heat.
- The Lamb shall shepherd us. “Shepherd” carries the idea of “to care for;” Jesus will take care of us. The Lamb will lead us beside waters of life—We shall live eternally.
- God will wipe every tear from our eyes—There will be no cause for sorrow.
Do you have these blessings to which you can look forward?
This sermon was originally preached by Dr. Justin Imel, Sr., at the Alum Creek church of Christ in Alum Creek, West Virginia.