The Lamb and the Shepherd-Revelation 7:9-17

Revelation 7:9-17 “After this I looked and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and in front of the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands. 10 And they cried out in a loud voice: “Salvation belongs to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb.” 11 All the angels were standing around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures. They fell down on their faces before the throne and worshiped God, 12 saying: “Amen! Praise and glory and wisdom and thanks and honor and power and strength be to our God for ever and ever. Amen!” 13 Then one of the elders asked me, “These in white robes — who are they, and where did they come from?” 14 I answered, “Sir, you know. “And he said, “These are they who have come out of the great tribulation; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. 15 Therefore they are before the throne of God and serve him day and night in his temple; and he who sits on the throne will spread his tent over them. 16 Never again will they hunger; never again will they thirst. The sun will not beat upon them, nor any scorching heat. 17 For the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd; he will lead them to springs of living water. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.”
Apocalisse 7:9-17 Dopo queste cose, guardai e vidi una folla immensa che nessuno poteva contare, proveniente da tutte le nazioni, tribù, popoli e lingue, che stava in piedi davanti al trono e davanti all’Agnello, vestiti di bianche vesti e con delle palme in mano. 10 E gridavano a gran voce, dicendo: «La salvezza appartiene al nostro Dio che siede sul trono, e all’Agnello». 11 E tutti gli angeli erano in piedi intorno al trono, agli anziani e alle quattro creature viventi; essi si prostrarono con la faccia a terra davanti al trono e adorarono Dio, dicendo: 12 «Amen! Al nostro Dio la lode, la gloria, la sapienza, il ringraziamento, l’onore, la potenza e la forza, nei secoli dei secoli! Amen». 13 Poi uno degli anziani mi rivolse la parola, dicendomi: «Chi sono queste persone vestite di bianco, e da dove sono venute?» 14 Io gli risposi: «Signore mio, tu lo sai». Ed egli mi disse: «Sono quelli che vengono dalla grande tribolazione. Essi hanno lavato le loro vesti e le hanno imbiancate nel sangue dell’Agnello. 15 Perciò sono davanti al trono di Dio e lo servono giorno e notte, nel suo tempio; e colui che siede sul trono stenderà la sua tenda su di loro. 16 Non avranno più fame e non avranno più sete, non li colpirà più il sole né alcuna arsura; 17 perché l’Agnello che è in mezzo al trono li pascerà e li guiderà alle sorgenti delle acque della vita; e Dio asciugherà ogni lacrima dai loro occhi».
     Many times people ask, “What will heaven be like?” The Bible gives us various pictures of the many facets that God has prepared for those who love Him. This is one picture of those who have persevered through great tribulation. They know that nothing shall separate them from the love of God and now they will experience eternal life free from any earthly chains.
     On this occasion, John sees the angels and the saints crying out (singing) in praise and worship that salvation comes only from God and the Lamb. Notice the people: they are from everywhere. Notice their posture: they are standing. Notice their garments: they are dressed in white robes and holding palm branches (signifying salvation as conquerors after a triumph). Notice the harmony of worship that declares the attributes of God: praise, glory, wisdom, thanks, honor, power and strength.
     It is at this point that John receives his revelation. The question is asked for John’s sake and the elder describes this scene. These faithful saints will never experience lack of hunger, thirst or exposure to the elements because all their needs will be provided by the Lamb who is their Shepherd. As a tender shepherd, every pain and sorrow will be wiped away (literally meaning obliterated) and transformed into rejoicing. Psalm 126:5 prophetically was written after the return from captivity and it is a familiar verse for believersIts inference has an apocalyptic theme: “Those who sow in tears will reap with songs of joy.” 
     How much greater will the rejoicing be in Heaven where every stress of life will be gone forever? Let us also be reminded that the comfort we have in Jesus now is only a shadow of what awaits those who are faithful.     
Pray with me: Lord, I see that You have made a way for everyone who has been faithful to have access to the throne of God. Help me to remain true and faithful to You no matter what I face knowing that I have access to Jesus, both as the Lamb and as the Shepherd, now and even more glorious in Heaven. 


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