Christmas is past. The presents are opened, the carols were sung, family and friends are back home. Christmas may be over but is Christmas finished? There is one more angelic message to consider. A message of worship which began in Bethlehem and continues for all eternity.
John the Revelator wrote:
“Then I looked, and I heard the voice of many angels around the throne and the living creatures and the elders; and the number of them was myriads of myriads, and thousands of thousands, saying with a loud voice, “Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing.” And every created thing which is in heaven and on the earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all things in them, I heard saying, “To Him who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb, be blessing and honor and glory and dominion forever and ever.” And the four living creatures kept saying, “Amen.” And the elders fell down and worshiped.” (Revelation 5:11–14, NASB95)
“Worthy is the Lamb” the heavenly hosts declared in unison. That lamb is Jesus Christ. The baby born in a stable, laid in a manger, God in human flesh, the light of the world, slain by Pontius Pilate, killed and laid in a tomb on Friday, rose again conquering death on Sunday, ascended into heaven, and seated at God’s right hand. “Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing,” the angels now declare.
In some ways, the wrapping paper, gifts, trees, special decorations, annual traditions, sparkling lights, familiar songs, and nativities scenes distract us. The babe of Bethlehem is like a wrapped gift with all of its wonder and drama. Christmas, however, is only meaningful when the gift is unwrapped and we see Jesus touch the broken and outcast, as we listen to His teaching, feel the agony of His death, and rejoice at His resurrection.
This angelic message is not limited to those heavenly beings. Every creature, every created thing, in heaven, on earth, under the earth, and in the sea join in worshiping the Lamb. “To Him who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb, be blessing and honor and glory and dominion forever and ever.” I’ve been in stadiums where 50,000 people sang the same song in worship to Jesus, it was moving. This scene in heaven is similar yet also impossible to imagine as billions upon billions lift their voice in unison. It was so moving that the four living creatures which constantly declare God’s glory could only repeat “Amen.”
We live, however, between Bethlehem and that powerful eternity of worship. The question of Christmas remains – what’s in the package? What did you get me for Christmas? I wonder what it is? There’s only one way to find out – unwrap God’s gift to you. I don’t believe you’ll be disappointed or ask for the return receipt. How do we unwrap this gift? The answer is found in the Gospel accounts of Jesus, the books of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John (along with the rest of the Bible).
Worthy is the Lamb that was slain!