What Is Heaven Like?
John received a revelation of heaven: a place that, whether by death or by rapture, all believers will see. John’s vision included a peek at the great tribulation, but first he received a blueprint of heaven.
Heaven Is a Real Place (vv. 1-2, 6)
Throughout John’s visit, he used phrases like “I saw,” “I looked,” and “Behold,” all of which indicate a real sensory experience.
Jesus spoke of heaven as a real place. Everything that is truly important will be there: our Father, our Savior, our Comforter, our reward.
Probe: What about heaven comforts you most? How does heaven’s reality affect your priorities on earth?
Heaven Is a Relevant Place (vv. 1-3)
The scroll God held in His right hand was the property deed to the earth. It required someone special to open it: a redeemer who was related, willing, and able to buy it back.
Earth is God’s by creation. He gave it to Adam to tend, but Adam forfeited the title deed when he sinned. Now the whole world is under Satan’s ownership. The question in Revelation 5 is: “Who will buy it back?”
Probe: Read Jeremiah 32. Has God asked you to make an investment as an act of faith, perhaps in a person or an opportunity? Why does He make such requests?
Heaven Is a Redemptive Place (vv. 4-7)
John was told, “Behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah” (v. 5). When he looked, he saw a Lamb. Jesus is both the Lion and the Lamb, both ruling King and sacrificial Savior.
In heaven, the only evidence of man’s work will be Jesus’ scars, tokens of His great love for us. He alone is qualified to buy back the world: He is related to us by His humanity, willing to lay down His life, and able to redeem us by His blood.
Probe: Consider the symbols associated with the Lamb: seven horns (omnipotence), seven eyes (omniscience), and seven Spirits (omnipresence). Read Isaiah 11:1-10. How is that prophecy related to what we see in Revelation 5?
Heaven Is a Responsive Place (vv. 8-14)
When the Lamb was revealed as being worthy to open the scroll, the response was fitting: rejoicing and worship.
Some only think of heaven in terms of earthly activities, as if the best it has to offer is the activities we enjoyed doing most here on earth. But John wasn’t bored, and there is nothing more fascinating than being face to face with God.
Probe: What appeals to you most about heaven?
Connect Up: Read Revelation 5:8-14 aloud.
Connect In: What things break your heart? Give thanks to God, because He will wipe away those tears in heaven.
Connect Out: Randy Alcorn said that Satan slanders three things: God’s person, His people, and His place. How can you encourage others with the reality and wonders of heaven?