it’s time to get your worship on!
So often during a time of praise and worship, I want to shout out to fellow worshipers, “Do you know to Whom we sing these praises? Can you see what is going down in heaven right now?”
Let me lay some foundation with scripture, then I want to introduce you to two climatic moments: one on earth and one in heaven. I think you’re going to experience an eye-opening call to unhindered praise and worship to our glorious King when it’s all said and done here!!!
Jesus testified that He only spoke the things the Father was speaking, and He only did the things the Father was doing. This is an important truth for us to grasp, because as we look carefully at His spoken words, we need to understand that God ordained them. Jesus’ words originated in the heart of God.
When Jesus returned to Nazareth after His forty days of prayer and fasting, He publicly declared in the synagogue that He was the long-awaited Messiah. He read from the Isaiah 61 passage and stated, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing” (Luke 4:21). In other words, Jesus was saying that from this point on, history is altered.
The end of Jesus’ life on earth includes another public declaration, words that, again, came from the very throne of God. Jesus said, “It is finished” (John 19:30). Who determined that His earthly work was finished? God did. When He said it, Jesus repeated it.
Are we clear on the finished work of Christ? What did He actually complete?
By His blood He paid the full price for all sin for all mankind for all time, and by His beaten and broken flesh He healed us.
I’m not sure we’ll ever understand the fullness of our redemption through Christ as long as we live in these mortal bodies with finite minds. But I have seen the curtain to the heavenly reality parted slightly for me to taste the goodness of Jesus’ blood shed for my sin and His body broken for my wholeness (Isaiah 53).
You see, there was a climatic moment on earth that I believe coincided with a climatic moment in heaven. On earth, scripture records that the Lord Jesus suffered tremendously and was utterly alone in His paying for our sin and healing. In a heart-wrenching statement of abandonment, He cried out, “My God, my God, why have You forsaken Me?” (Matthew 27:46). Jesus was alone. Only He could take on the debt of sin of mankind and pay it fully. No one was alongside of Him during that darkness. No one came and relieved Him. There was no comfort, no presence of the Father…. only every last sin accounted for through the sinless and perfect life of the One who hung on the cross.
Now fix your gaze upon this heavenly scene: It must have happened in that dark time of Jesus’ separation from the Father in heaven, because when the mighty angel asked “Who is worthy to break the seals and open the scroll,” Scripture records that there was “no one in heaven or on earth or under the earth” who could open the holy scroll or even look inside it (Revelation 5:2-3, emphasis added). WAIT A MINUTE! Where was Jesus?
Remember the climatic moment on earth? Jesus cried out to God asking where He was. If God was separated from Jesus in that moment, then Jesus was separated from God. The ransom was not yet paid, not until God said, “DONE!” And look at what happened in heaven. It was a climatic moment if ever there was one! John the Apostle was in the Spirit and witnessed the scene. There was no one worthy who could take the scroll, and John wept and wept. Can you imagine that moment? How long did it last? For how long did heaven not have the Answer? For how long was the Worthy One vacant from heaven?
I cannot respond to those questions, but I do know that the Revelation of Jesus came. One of the elders of heaven said to John, “Do not weep! See, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has triumphed. He is able to open the scroll and its seven seals” (Revelation 5:5).
Can we finish this passage and feast on all of its meaning for us?
Then I saw a Lamb, looking as if it had been slain, standing in the center of the throne, encircled by the four living creatures and the elders. He had seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth. He came and took the scroll from the right hand of Him who sat on the throne. And when He had taken it, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb…
And they sang a new song…(Revelation 5).
They sang a new song. Heaven’s Answer was revealed for the first time and a new praise was created. God recorded the lyrics for us so that we, too, can join in. Don’t you want to sing and worship Him like it’s the first time? I do.