Christmas: The Most Wonderful Time of the Year? (Revelation 5:12-13)
"Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!” 13 And I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea, and all that is in them, saying, “To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be blessing and honor and glory and might forever and ever!” —Revelation 5:12-13
For some, this Christmas will not be “the most wonderful time of the year.” The vacancy at the dinner table reminds you of the loved one you lost this year. The dinner alone serves as evidence of the relationship that fell apart this year. The inability to buy presents for your family confronts you with the reality of the job you lost this year. When we are overwhelmed by the sight of our circumstances, it’s hard to see the faithfulness of God; it’s hard to rejoice; it’s hard to worship!
When we walk by the sight of our circumstances we are easily overwhelmed by the chaos and evil in our world and the suffering and disappointments in our lives. Consider the early Christians—they suffered at the hands of an oppressive government; they were handed over to officials by their own family members and neighbors; they faced the pressures of living in a decadent culture. And yet, it’s in this very context that Jesus gives us the book of Revelation.
In Revelation 2-3, Jesus exposes the dangers churches face, but he quickly invites us to come up to the throne room so we can see how things look from God’s perspective. While from our perspective it looks like the world is in chaos and no one is in control, Revelation 4 reminds us that our all-glorious God is on his throne, and he is worthy to receive worship from all the heavenly hosts.
Then, in Revelation 5, we’re reminded that because Jesus has conquered evil, sin, and death by his life, death, and resurrection, God has placed Jesus on the throne to enact his eternal plan to save and to judge (5:1-7). And because Jesus has conquered, he is worthy to receive worship from all beings (5:8-14).
So then, while our circumstances may overwhelm us, we remind ourselves that no matter what we face, Jesus is God’s conquering King. Even in our sufferings and disappointments this Christmas, we can worship Jesus, for he was slain for our sins and is worthy “to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing” (5:13)! And, while our world appears to be crumbling right beneath our feet, we can worship Jesus because he is, in fact, sitting on the throne in complete control, enacting God’s eternal plan. Not one word of God’s plan will fail. Therefore, he and the Father are worthy to receive ‘blessing and honor and glory and might forever and ever” (5:14)!
This Christmas, let’s remind ourselves of God’s faithfulness to us in Jesus. No matter what we may face in this life, we are only following Jesus into suffering and death. But rest assured! Because Jesus has conquered, we who believe in Him will also conquer. Like Jesus, we too will experience resurrection, vindication, and glory. No matter what we face in this life, no one or no thing can take that away from us. So, let us rejoice and be glad and worship Jesus—the newborn king who became God’s conquering King.