2009-11-14 - The 144,000
Revelation 14:1 And I looked, and behold, the Lamb standing on Mount Zion, and with Him one hundred and forty-four thousand, having His name and the name of His Father written on their foreheads.
This passage, the 144,000, makes a lot of Christians wonder. It is one of the places where the Jehovah Witnesses fail in their interpretation of Scripture. In fact, for them, this verse is a very hope-defeating verse. Today, I would like to set that number aside. I think it just signifies a large number, and we should take it metaphorically. Let us look somewhere in the verse that often gets neglected. Let us look at the most significant aspect of the verse. Let us consider the Lamb.
Mount Zion was an important place for the Jews. This is the heavenly Mount Zion, and Johns first observation is recorded as, behold, the Lamb. What is the #1 attraction in Heaven? We see it here. It is the Lamb. It is Christ. John gets a view of Heaven, and when we think of Heaven, if you are like me, you start thinking about worlds unexplored, glorious sights that we get a glimpse of when NASA sends up a probe, and wonders unimagined. Here is John, and all of that is around him to be sure, but what crystallizes his attention? It is the person of Christ in the midst of it all. His eyes, and every other eye in Heaven, are fixed upon the Divine Person of the Lord Jesus Christ. Everything else, including the 144,000, comes in secondarily. The Lamb is the joy of the Christian. The Lamb is all the glory of Heaven.
It is the joy of the believer today to have fellowship with Christ, and the deeper the better. What would it be like if we were to see Jesus, just once? It would be Heaven on Earth. But consider the sight of Jesus in Heaven, and the knowledge that this sight will never be taken from us. We know when the sun comes up in the morning, that the stars fade in the background, and so it is in Heaven. When we see Jesus, everything else, all the round-about glories of Heaven, will fade into the background, Behold, the Lamb.
We are to keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God, Colossians 3:1. Christ is all, and in all, Colossians 3:11. This is to be our mindset. Christ is everything for the Redeemed. He has secured paradise for the elect. He has died for sin for all those who come to faith in Him, His atonement for sin, and redemption by His blood, have secured eternal life. In Heaven, Jesus is all that matters. He is coming to judge the world at the last day. He will not come as a lamb at such a time, but He will be a lion to His enemies. To His friends, He is a lamb. The saints will cry, Halleluiah, great and marvelous are Your works. Those who have rejected the Lamb of God will cry for the rocks and mountains to fall on them, so as to try to escape His wrath. Oh, to be a friend of Jesus on that day. John says, Behold the Lamb." It is our wisdom to also say this, and to give Him all the glory.
Soli Deo Gloria,