Wed, 21 November 2018
(Rv.5:1-10; Ps.149:1-6,9,Rv.5:10; Lk.19:41-44)
“Do not weep. The Lion of the tribe of Judah,
the Root of David, has won the right by His victory
to open the scroll with its seven seals.”
“Jesus wept over” Jerusalem “because [she] failed to recognize the time of [her] visitation”; and so she will be destroyed, and so her enemies will “leave not a stone on a stone within” her walls. And John “wept bitterly because no one could be found to open or examine the scroll” “in the right hand of the One who sat on the throne.” The scroll “had writing on both sides and was sealed with seven seals.” How wonderful it must be! But “who is worthy to open” it?
The tears of both will be appeased, both by the One. For whom does John see appear at the throne of God but “a Lamb standing, a Lamb that had been slain” – Jesus, our Savior! who is on His way even in our gospel today to conquer death, to receive the wounds John witnesses, that by His blood He may purchase for God “men of every race and tongue, of every people and nation”… that He might take the destruction of Jerusalem upon Himself and thus redeem her from annihilation. Because of His sacrifice, He is able to read the wisdom of the ages to all waiting hearts, for that wisdom is known only in such dying, only in His redeeming love.
And so, let us join with the elders who fall “down before the Lamb.” Let our prayer unite with “the prayers of God’s holy people,” which rise up like “aromatic spices” before the throne of the One on high. Let us sing the new hymn unto the Lamb who was slain for our sins and so saved us from all tears. “Sing to the Lord a new song of praise in the assembly of the faithful.” Weep no more but “let the high praises of God be in [your] throats” and “praise His name in the festive dance.”
How great is our God! How profound is the revelation of His wonders in our midst! What joy do we find in His blood! His wounds bring us victory over death, and we reign now in the New Jerusalem as priests in the service of our King, joining ourselves ever to His sacrifice, finding ever the wisdom only He brings.
O LORD, offering the sacrifice of your only Son,
we become priests in your Temple;
this blood we shed He makes holy by His love.
YHWH, you have made us a kingdom of priests who offer continually to you the blood of your Son in our holy prayer.
O LORD, it is we who have slaughtered Jesus, your Lamb, we who by our blindness have caused Him to be pressed hard from every side, not a stone left on a stone in this holiest Temple… Yet by His willing acceptance of our sins He washes clean the blood upon our unholy hands and redeems our souls from destruction. By His blessed sacrifice He makes us holy, as holy becomes the sacrifice we make.
O how can we fathom your love for us, dear LORD? How can we plumb the depths of your Son’s sacrifice? We are left with nothing but high praises for you in our throat!
O LORD, let us exult in your glory this day, in the glory that is ours by the wounds upon your Lamb. Make us a nation of priests offering always this living sacrifice in your NAME. Let us ever praise you and the One who was slain – save us from all sin!