Title: FALLING AT THE LORD’S FEET
Text: Revelation 1:9-20
How’s voice would you like to have? Have you heard a voice that you wish yours was like? I wish I had the voice of Alexander Scurby. Each of us are born with a voice that is particular only to us. But there’s little you can do to alter your voice in a healthy way, but we can construct our message in such a way that people will listen.
In our text we will discover that Jesus has both the voice and the message that commands people to listen. In fact, it caused the Apostle John to fall at His feet and worship. Jesus went one step further – He put His hand on John’s shoulder and gave him a message for the churches to come. Read Text.
- John states that he is a brother and fellow partaker in tribulation. What ways have you found encouragement from a fellow Christian during a tribulation? How could we be more sensitive to someone going through tribulation?
- What is perseverance, and how is it necessary for enduring tribulation? (Defn: Active endurance.)
- Why do you think John was banished to the island of Patmos? (Possibly his preaching was interpreted as a threat.) What should be our character in the middle of such reactions?
Insight: Other Apostles were martyred, but John was allowed to live. The island of Patmos became a theater for God’s special revelation. To him it was the very gate of Heaven. How you see your island of desertion can depend on whether it becomes a prison cell or a theater of God’s awesome display of glory.
- In verse 10 John mentions hearing a loud voice like that of a trumpet. Why so loud? Was God angry with Him, or what? (God wanted His voice to be unmistakable and insure that John recorded the vision.)
- 1:12 The seven golden lamp stands are the seven churches. 1:20 Since this is symbolic, why is this a fitting representation of the Church? (Gold = excellence, value, beauty, splendor, precious – our intended characteristics. Lamp stand = receive, exhibit & dispense light – we are to reflect back to the world the purity of the light God puts within us. The Church is to bear the light of God in a darkened world.) Mat. 5:14-16 What happens when the church fails to do this? Rev. 2:4-5
Insight: Notice that the glorified Christ circulates among the lamp stands. He is always in our midst trimming our wick, refueling our oil, and igniting the flame within us.
- What is the robe from shoulder to feet with a golden sash is suppose to tell us about our Lord? (He is our High Priest.) Heb. 4:14-16
- What does His white hair make you think of besides me? (He is the Ancient of Days, worthy of honor; is full of wisdom and dignity.) Lev. 19:32; Prov. 16:31; Dan. 7:9
- Would it be very easy to gaze into the eyes of Him who’s eyes are full of fire? What does that say to you? (Penetrating insight into the hearts of man; discernment with accuracy.) Dan 10:6
- Obviously the Lord wants us to pay attention to the symbolism of His feet. What do you think He is trying to convey here? (Strength and stability that has been refined by fire.) Ezek. 8:2
- What kind of feelings do you get when you are standing below a great waterfall? (Awe-inspiring, powerful) Isn’t that the way it should be when God speaks to us? Rev. 14:2; 19:6
- John reveals that the seven stars are seven angels that are in Christ’s right hand. Do you see any significance about them being in His right hand? (He has sovereign control over them. He also protects them.) Jn. 10:27:28
Insight: Stars guide those who navigate by them at night. In our dark hour He guides and protects us.
- It’s obvious that there is some strong symbolism behind the vision of a sharp two-edged sword coming out of Christ’s mouth. What does it say to you? (Spoken divine truth.) Eph. 6:17 How is the Word of God an offensive weapon against Satan? (Like Christ when tempted, we slay Satan when we quote the Word of God in temptations.) How is the Word of God the strongest of all weapons? (No one can stand against God’s Word on the Day of Judgment.) Isa. 11:4
- What does the shining brilliance of Christ’s face mean to you? (His absolute holiness and righteousness.) Matt. 13:43
Insight: The Churches are lamps. The angels are stars. The Lord is the sun. Christ is to the believer what the sun is to the world. The power is not in the stars, but in the Word that made the stars.
- How would you feel and what would you do if you heard such a voice that John heard? Do you think it would have been inappropriate for John to remain standing in the presence of this glorified Savior? (Yes. He was experiencing something so great, and someone of unparalleled majesty that to remain on his feet in next to blasphemy.)
Insight: The glorious majesty of our Lord causes us to worship. Reverence means the sincere, practical recognition of greatness. The Highest Greatness is entitled to our deepest reverence.
- Being as frightened and awe-struck as John must have been, what did Jesus’ hand on his shoulder do for him at this point? (It communicated acceptance and honor.)
- Jesus’ first words to John after he fell to his feet were, “Do not be afraid.” After being in the powerful presence of the Lord and He takes away your fear, what is left? (Reverence.)
- Notice Jesus qualifies why John need not fear, for He is the first and the last, the living One, was dead and is alive forevermore. When He who is all these things is your friend and His right hand is on your shoulder, do you have any just reason to fear? Isa. 44:6
- What’s implied in the fact that Jesus holds the keys of death and Hades? (Death has no power over Him and He is now the conqueror of death; and He has set free those who were in Hades.) When did Jesus get these keys? (Keys – symbol of authority.) 1 Pet. 3:18-19; 4:4-6
- Verse 19 is the key verse for knowing how to interpret the book of Revelation. What is “the things you have seen” in reference to? (His vision of Christ in 1:1-20.) What is “the things which are” in reference to? (The things that were happening in the seven churches he wrote to.) What is “the things which shall take place after these things” in reference to? (The things to unfold in the future as foretold in chapters 4-22.)
Insight: Some never get beyond the Christ of History – the Christ that lived in the past. If He isn’t big enough in your eyes to have Him as Christ Present and Christ Future, He isn’t big enough to be your God.
- What do you think it means to have an angel assigned to each of the seven churches? Rev. 1:20; Heb. 1:13-14; 13:1-2
In our high tech world where everyone thinks they are self-sufficient, few pause to bow before the Lord and give Him the reverence He deserves. It’s only when we come before God prostrate and broken that we see that we are a people who are desperate for a touch from God. Only when we humble ourselves at His feet do we gain His favor.
It’s possible to know much about Christ and yet not know Him. You cannot contain Him in doctrines and facts. He is a Person who is destined to sit on a throne by all who seek Him. He’s seeking a throne – has He found one in your heart? Head knowledge without personally embracing Him leaves the heart barren.
Nicodemus said, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher come from God.”
Paul said, “I know whom I have believed.”
Which are you? The difference comes from a living fellowship with Him.
It’s easier to unload our burdens when we bend our knees and fall at His feet. Have you been carrying the load of life on self-sufficient shoulders? Or are you coming to Him to unload that burden? Remember His words to you: “Come to Me all who are weary and heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” (Matt. 11:28)