The Lamb Who Was Slain
o Opening: What would life be like if Jesus did not exist, if God wasn’t there? (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=73_IjNPmIEI )
o In a word,... Hopeless!
o Directed by award winning film maker and “Former” Christian, Brian Flemming makes a rather bold attempt at proving that God is not there!
o The movie, “The God who wasn’t there” claims:
The early founders of Christianity seem wholly unaware of the idea of a human Jesus
§ The Jesus of the Gospels bears a striking resemblance to other ancient heroes and the figureheads of pagan savior cults
§ Contemporary Christians are largely ignorant of the origins of their religion
§ Fundamentalism is as strong today as it ever has been, with an alarming 44% of Americans believing that Jesus will return to earth in their lifetimes
o Quote: It was a “former atheist, CS Lewis, who said “"A man can no more diminish God's glory by refusing to worship Him than a lunatic can put out the sun by scribbling 'darkness' on the wall of his cell..."
o FCF: By extension, just as the refusal to worship God fails to diminish His glory, the refusal to acknowledge God fails to diminish His reality.
o Transition: So I propose another question this morning, “What would life be like if Jesus did exist, if God was there?”
§ Life would have purpose and meaning
§ Humanity would have value and intrinsic worth
§ Calamity and Persecution would have an end
§ The world and all of creation would have an author.
§ Fallen humanity would have a redeemer.
§ If Jesus does exist and God is really there, this broken world and all that is in it would someday be made right, the enemies of God would be brought down and the children of God would be lifted up!
§ **If Jesus does exist and God really is there, the only logical response would be worship!**
Ø Transition: Over the past number of weeks it is this very train of thought that Pastor Paul has been directing you towards through the book of Daniel.
o In spite of captivity and destruction, God was in control. The spotlight of God’s sovereignty shines bright throughout the book of Daniel as well as the pages of human history. The fortunes of kings and the affairs of men are not left up to chance and as was revealed to Daniel, God is feverishly active in bringing his plan of redemption to fruition.
o As Pastor Paul has recently been teaching, there is much to be happy about as found in the book of Daniel, but Interestingly, Daniel confesses two times in Dan 12:4-13 that he doesn’t fully understand it all.
o Dan 12:9 God says “Go your way Daniel, for these words are concealed and sealed up until the end time”.
Ø Transition: It is with this in mind that we fast forward this morning to the book of Revelation Chapters 4-5
o The first chapter of Revelation reveals to us the person of Christ, as John is exiled on the Island of Patmos he is given a glorious vision of Christ and the text tells us that John fell as a dead man at His feet until Jesus places His right hand on his shoulder and says fear not.
o In chapters 2-3 we are given an intimate look into the life and practice of seven literal historical Churches that may also be representative of believers both in John’s day and at any time in the history of the church
o In both chapters 4 and 5, the scene shifts to heaven.
o In chapter 4, we see the worship of God the Father.
o **In chapter 5, we will experience the worship of Jesus Christ, as all of Heaven seeks one worthy to open the book or scroll which is thought by many to be the book God instructed Daniel to seal until the end times.**
o We find later that the opening of the scroll results in the pouring out of Judgment which takes place from chapter 6 all the way through to chapter 18, furthermore, I propose that on a larger scale, this is the fulfillment of his redemptive plan.
o The majority of us here today believe that something takes place before this time of horrendous judgment between chapters 1-5 referred to as the “Rapture”,
o Yet, no matter your perspective of the Millennium, Tribulation, and the Rapture, we can all agree that the entirety of Scripture is given so that we my better understand how to Glorify God with our lives.
Ø Sermon Idea: The matchless Lamb of God is worthy of the comprehensive worship of our lives.
Ø He is worthy because of who He is: 1-7
Ø He is worthy because of what He has done: 8-14
*The meaning of the scroll is best understood by recognizing the truth in a few different areas:
· A Catalog of Judgments - Judgments of lament and mourning and woe attend the opening of each seal (and the subsequent trumpets and bowls).
· Prophetic Revelation - As the seals are removed from the scroll, events unfold which are the fulfillment of prophetic themes found elsewhere in Scripture..
· A Testament - The testamentary nature of the scroll is seen in the fact that only the slain Lamb can open it (Heb. 9:15-17; Rev. 5:9+). Opening the scroll ultimately brings about the outworking of unfulfilled promises of the New Covenant (Jer. 31:31-37; Rom. 11:26-27; etc.).
· A Deed of Purchase - By opening of the scroll, the Lamb takes as His inheritance that which He had already purchased (Rev. 5:9+). His inheritance includes an enduring kingdom and the title deed to the earth (Ps. 2:6-8).
“No doubt all of heaven was as silent as a whisper as the Lamb who was slain to take away the sins of the world now stands and begins to move towards the Father. On earth, sin has left in its wake the ashes of broken lives and relationships, the bones of death and murder, and justice has remained slumbering as grace remained diligent. Yet, in just a matter of moments He would reveal in the paradoxical package of a nail pierced, thorn scarred, and spear marked body that His scars tell a story of redemption rather than defeat. Nearing the Father, the worshipful angels stood motionless, arrested by the moment that all of creation had been groaning for. In that single moment, the scarred hands of the Son, the lamb who was slain, takes from the Sovereign hands of the Father, that which would bring to fruition the redemptive plan of creation and the long deferred judgment of the world. “May I introduce you to the Savior of the World, the Lamb who was slain, Jesus! (Benny Stiltner)
He is Worthy of our worship because of who He is!
o Division 2: He is worthy of our worship because of what He has done (5:8-14)
**The Worshipers: Four Living Creatures, Twenty-Four Elders
**The Object of Worship: The Lamb
**The Reason: His Sacrifice
**The Worshipers: The Angels, Living Creatures and Elders
**The Object of Worship: The Lamb
**The Reason: His Sacrifice
**The Worshipers: All Creation
**The Object of Worship: The Father and the Lamb
Ø Song 1: Four Living creatures-Twenty-Four elders: Rev 5:8-10:
· Four Living Creatures: Angelic Beings of Worship introduced in chapter 4
· 24 Elders: Representatives of the Redeemed
· Fell Down: profound humility of worship and recognition of the Lamb’s finished work of redemption and His worthiness to now accomplish what He is about to do.
Ø Song 2: The Angels, Creatures and Elders: Rev 5:11-12:
· Myriads and thousands: The number of the Angels can’t even be calculated; the language here indicated an innumerable host of Angels.
o Praise: (Thanksgiving) It refers to the praise that should be given to the Lord because of His wonderful acts of redemption.
Ø What if God wasn’t there? If Jesus didn’t exist?... we would have much reason to weep!
Ø But….what if He did? …we would have much reason to Worship!
Ø The emphasis of this chapter is clearly worship!
Ø But a further emphasis is the unified expression of worship.
Ø This is the Worship God desires and Christ deserves from our lives.
He remains the center of the universe. It is God, not man, for whom all things were and are created. It is His glory, not our glorification, that is important. As the Westminster Catechism states, “The chief end of man is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.” We must never neglect this reality or come to feel that somehow the chief end of God is to glorify man! 
Illustration: John Piper Desiring God pg 99
Larry Richards and Lawrence O. Richards, The Teacher's Commentary, Includes index., 1079 (Wheaton, Ill.: Victor Books, 1987).