Now I get to Chapter 7 of the Apocalypse. So much has been written about those seven seals in that chapter. And not all that is written seems to coincide.
But the opening, which states “I saw the Lamb open one of the seven seals” holds much hope for me. Whereas in the previous chapter the big question was “Who is worthy to open the scroll and break its seals?” there is no question here. The Lion of the Tribe of Judah, the Root of David, the Lamb of the world who was slain for sinners, is worthy. He as authority. And whatever he allows, is in place. He is the only one who can be trusted to do what is 100% correct, what is fitting and right.
So does the warning of plagues etc. fill me with fear? No. Even the slaughtered saints anticipate their vindication, “Sovereign Lord, holy and true, how long will it be before you judge and avenge our blood on the inhabitants of the earth?”
For them, and for all who suffer, pain always lasts too long; but while weeping may endure for a whole night long, joy always arrives at morning time!
It may seem like God has no purpose in waiting long while people seem to suffer. But here is what the writer of 1st Peter tells us. “The Lord is not slow about his promise, as some think of slowness, but is patient with you, not wanting any to perish, but all to come to repentance.”
So the very end that we may wish for, might be delayed for the sake of others. This sounds harsh; but the cross is harsh. Jesus didn’t deserve it. However, the shameful cross was an instrument in opening the way for the world of sinners. A harsh and humbling and shameful thing, a travesty of justice it would seem. But that cross held power. The one who died this shamefully delivers all who shamelessly put confidence in him.
So whatever the seven scrolls have in record- the enemy who seeks to kill and to destroy, injustice, destruction, peril, damnation – the tribulations to be feared; fear not. The Lamb of God is worthy to defend us in this and the last day.