Heaven Near
Revelation 4:1-11
After this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in heaven…

1. The reality of a heavenly world, and of its concern and connection with this. That world has its inhabitants, its plans and its purposes, its presences and its agencies, even like this. The subjects of its chief deliberations are the interests and the fortunes, the events and the destinies, of this lower world.

2. What an astonishment would it be to any one of us, to see that door into heaven suddenly opened! Oh, what a marvel, what a confusion, what a discomfiture, must it be to a worldly man or to a sinner to find at the moment of death that this thing which we have so long seen and handled, in which we have so long lived and moved, was not, after all, the whole or the chief part of that which is!

3. To Christian persons, to those, that is, who mourn for sin, and renounce and forsake it, and trust in Christ only, and pray for the grace of the Holy Spirit to make them and keep them His, it ought to be and will be a real comfort to remember that just inside that door there is a heaven, and a throne set, and a God seated thereon, and a holy and loving council gathered, and plans under preparation for purposes of good to the poor struggling and suffering people below; and that round the throne is the covenant bow, promising evermore a clear shining after rain, and pledging the very faithfulness of God to their final rescue and deliverance.

4. Life and death, things present as well as things to come, accident and disease, want and age; yes, things more outward still, the bread and the water, the fire and the covering, the judgments of sword and famine and pestilence, the mercies of dew and rain and fruitful seasons; all are God's, all are Christ's; and if God's, if Christ's, then the Christian's too (1 Corinthians 3:22, 23). Oh, what an antidote to life's cares, for those who can use it l It springs from the fact that creation itself, in all its parts, rational and irrational, has its representatives before the throne in heaven, and ascribes the glory, the honour, and the strength to Him who sits upon the throne.

5. But if the thought of the four living beings which typify creation has something of comfort for us in reference to the world above, how much more that of men of our own flesh and likeness, who are already clad in the robes of priesthood, and admitted to the sight of God and to the ministrations of the heavenly temple! That world is not all peopled with strange and unknown forms.

6. Are our faces and our feet set heavenwards?

(Dean Vaughan.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: After this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter.

WEB: After these things I looked and saw a door opened in heaven, and the first voice that I heard, like a trumpet speaking with me, was one saying, "Come up here, and I will show you the things which must happen after this."

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