February 23, 2014
READ: Revelation 7:9-12
The Good News . . .will be preached throughout the whole world, so that all nations will hear it; and then the end will come (Matthew 24:14).
Christians believe that Jesus is coming back again. A terrifying time of unprecedented persecution and suffering, destruction and death will precede His return, however (Revelation 6-16). Satan will cause havoc, severely persecuting those who believe in God.
In the midst of such intense suffering on earth, God has encouraged His people by letting them have a glimpse into heaven. In a vision, John saw “a vast crowd, too great to count, from every nation and tribe and people and language” (7:9). This fulfils the two promises God gave to Abraham: His descendants would be as countless as the dust of the earth (Genesis 13:16) and as numerous as the stars in the sky (15:5). God also said he would be the father of many nations (17:4).
The immensity and diversity of the crowd described in Revelation 7:9 emphasises the universality of the gospel: Jesus died to save the whole world, not just the Jews (John 1:29; 1 John 2:2, 4:14). Even as Jesus told us to “go into all the world and preach the Good News to everyone” (Mark 16:15), God gives us a picture of heaven that completes the great commission (Matthew 24:14).
At His triumphal entry into Jerusalem, a large crowd asked Jesus for salvation (21:9 NIV). They shouted, “Hosanna” a Hebrew exclamation of praise that literally means “save now”. The believers in heaven praise Him for answering this request. The multitude roars in one accord: “Salvation comes from our God who sits on the throne and from the Lamb!” (Revelation 7:10). They praise God for their redemption and for Jesus who died to save them.
Let’s join the angels and bow down in worship of the God who saves! (v.13). —K.T. Sim
Read Revelation 5:1-14 to learn about another vision of heaven. What did John see that assures, encourages or comforts you?
Why is your salvation the most important thing for which you can thank God? How do you show that you’re truly grateful for your salvation?