Our Glorious God!

Revelation 1: 17:18

"All hail the power of Jesus' Name! Let angels prostrate fall;
Bring forth the royal diadem, and crown Him Lord of all.
Bring forth the royal diadem, and crown Him Lord of all
."

We must never think casually of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Christians who think casually of the Lord Jesus will also think lightly of sin.
And when this is true, the believer will become callous to the past and careless to the present.
A Christian who would think very little of the punishment due to sin will have little thought
about the atonement that Jesus made for sin.
The Christian who thinks casually of the Lord Jesus will get Him very little of their time
and service.

Charles H. Spurgeon said: "Gratitude is weak when favors are undervalued."
He who thinks casually of Christ will have little comfort as to his own security.
For having such a little Saviour, he is still in danger.
But if we serve a mighty Saviour who is able to save to the uttermost,
then, that Christian experiences the security of being in God's protective hands.

May the Lord deliver any one of us from ever thinking casually of Jesus,
and of having Him so the little in our thoughts.
Jesus Christ deserves higher praise than we could ever give Him.
Even when all the angels sing the loudest notes and sing His highest praises,
the music still falls far short of His excellence.

When our thoughts of Jesus are expanded and elevated, we are beginning to have
the right ideas upon other matters.
In that light of His love and atoning sacrifice, we see the depth of the degradation
from which our Saviour has lifted us.
And we hate the sins which pierced Him, and made it necessary for the Lord of life to be crucified.

When we form some adequate estimate of what Jesus has done for us, our gratitude grows,
and with our gratitude, our love for Him grows.
And such love compels us to consecration to Him and suggest that we deny our selfish actions.
Then we will be bold to speak for Him.
We will be ready to serve Him.
And, if needs be, we will be ready to suffer for Him.
And we would be ready to give up all we have to bring glory to Him.

When our thoughts of Christ are high and holy, our delight in Him will be high also.
Then, our sense of security will be strong, and with that sense of security will come
the sacred joy and peace from God which will bless our souls.
So, I hope in this message to suggest some truths which will help us to set the Lord Jesus
on a glorious high and holy throne within our hearts.
I hope that at the end of this service, every Christian can sing:
"Bring forth the royal diadem
And crown Him Lord of all
."

The first thing that we must notice about John in this message is that he is overpowered.
John writes, "And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead."

John, the beloved disciple, was favored with an unusual vision of his glorified Lord.
In the blaze of that revelation his soul was overwhelmed.
Initially, we might have thought that it would have seemed certain that John's feelings
would have been those of excessive delight.
We would have sought that when John saw his long lost Saviour that he would
have experienced ecstatic bliss.

It didn't happen like that.
We know that because of the fact that the Lord Jesus had to say to him, "Fear not!"
It was not that John was unhappy, but it was not delight that cause him
to fall prostrate at the feet of Jesus.
I believe that if we were suddenly confronted by the Lord Jesus, we would also have to confess:
"When I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead."

Notice the occasion that caused John to faint and fall at the feet of Jesus was described
by John as, "I saw him."
This is what caused him to faint with fear: "I saw him!"
John had seen Jesus on earth, but John had not seen Jesus in His full glory.
The vision of the Lord was too much for him.
No one on earth or in heaven can compare with Jesus in glory.

What was the reason that such a sight of Christ would so overwhelm him?
The reason is stated in the text -- it was partly fear.
But why is it fear?

John was the disciple referred to as the one Jesus loved.
John knew that Jesus loved him.
But for all that, he was still afraid for Jesus had to say, "Fear not!"
That fear originated partly because of his own weakness and insignificance in the presence
of the almighty God and His greatness.

And that would be our fear also.
We would be absolutely nothingness in the presence of just a glimpse
of the omnipotent God.

At that time, John perceived more impressively than ever the purity and the immaculate holiness
of the Lord Jesus.
And being conscious of his own imperfections, he felt like Isaiah, when he cried:
"Woe is me, I am undone; for I am a man of unclean lips;
for mine eyes have seen the Lord of Hosts
." (Isaiah 6:5)

His feelings were like those of Job, when he said, "I have heard of thee by the hearing
of the ear, but now mine eye seeth thee, wherefore I abhor myself and repent
in dust and ashes
." (Job 42:6)

When those who are most spiritual and sanctified are humbled and filled with holy awe and dread;
and when they fully perceive the mystery and holiness of God, they come to know
the vast difference between their horrible sin and God's absolute purity and holiness.

It could be also that a part of the fear which caused John to fall as dead came from
a partial ignorance or forgetfulness of His Lord.
So Jesus instructs him to "Fear not!"
And then, Jesus goes on to teach him in order to remove his fear.

John needed fresh knowledge and to remember old truths with renewed power
in order to cure his fear.
As soon as he knew his Lord, he recovered his strength.
The Lord Jesus who stood before him would have John know that He was the first and the last,
the ever living and almighty Lord.

The knowledge of Jesus is the best remedy for fears.
When we are better acquainted with our Lord, we are able to set aside our doubts.
Jesus is our consolation, our strength, and our security!
So, study your Lord!
It must be our life's work to know Him.

We must seek the Holy Spirit's illumination and must be involved in the fellowship of the church.
Then, our despondency and doubt will vanish.
It is folly to walk in sorrow when we might constantly walk in joy and peace.

While we notice the occasion and the reasons, we must not forget the extent
to which John was overpowered.
He says, "I fell at his feet as dead."
He was not dead, but he was "as dead."

He did not say that this happen because the blaze of the face of Jesus had blinded him.
He could not hear for the voice was like the sound of many waters had dulled his hearing.
He was unable to think much less to act.
He was stripped not only of self-glory and strength, but almost of life itself.

What an infinite blessing to us that we should be utterly emptied, stripped of self,
and slain before the Lord.
Our strength is our weakness.
Our life is our death.
And when both are entirely gone, we will begin to be strong, and to truly live.

To lie at the feet of Jesus is a righteous experience.
And to lie there as sick and wounded is better, but to lie there as dead is best of all.
All of us should wish to lie at His dear feet, slain by His mighty grace.
When Jesus sees one of His disciples lying prostrate at His feet, He is ready to touch him
with His hands of love, and will revive him with His power.
"He restoreth my soul."
"He giveth power unto the faint.

After we have seen John overpowered, now we will see John restored.
The condition of death did not last long.
Jesus laid His right hand upon him, and said to him, "Fear not."

When God's children become exceeding faint and feeble, and their own sense of impurity
and nothingness becomes painful and even killing to them, the Lord Jesus has ways
of restoring and reviving their spirits.

John said, "He laid His hand upon me."
No other hand has this power.
There is mighty power and mighty healing in that hand.
This touch gives power to the faint.

Every fainting Christian can take courage!
"They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength."
This touch upon John is followed by a word from the mouth of Jesus.
Jesus said, "Fear not!"

Christ Himself is our medicine.
He is the cure.
He is our Great Physician.

His voice which stilled the sea also will cast out all our fears.
Oh, that we might hear that same voice by the Spirit in our inmost souls.
"Oh might I hear thine heavenly tongue,
But whisper, 'Thou art mine.'
Those gentle words should raise my song
To notes almost divine
."

We have observed John being overpowered, and then we have seen him revived,
and now, we will see John receiving further instructions.

John was first of all instructed as to the Lord's person.
Jesus said: "Fear not, I am the first and the last,
I am he that liveth and was dead
."

Only God can use this language.
He is first, and only God can be last.
Our Lord was absolutely first.
He existed even before He was born into the world.
John the Baptist testified that Jesus was before me.
Jesus is from everlasting.

Go back in history -- before Moses -- Christ was before him.
Jesus said: "Before Abraham was -- I am."
And go back to the creation of the world, and you'll find Jesus Christ.
John 1:1: "In the beginning was the Word (Jesus) and the Word was with God
and the Word was with God
."

When Jesus said: "I am the first and last", He was saying that He is the sum
and substance of all things.
Jesus Christ is all in all!
What more would you want?
If you have Christ, you have it all.
You have God for your protector and provider, so why would you fear?

Jesus also comforted John with the truth of His self-existence.
"I am He that liveth."
He is saying that He is the living one.
Christ alone gives life.
There is no life apart from Christ.
"I am the way, the truth, and the life." (John 14: 6)

And, if these two sources of consolation should not suffice, the Lord provides a third one.
That one is His atoning death.
He said, "I was dead."
He was crucified on a cross -- He was dead.
Jesus bowed His head and gave up His life.
And they laid His body in the tomb.

This is comfort for every Christian -- He died!
Atonement is complete.
For without the shedding of blood, there is no remission of sin.
The death of Christ brings pardon.
So, look to calvary, and "fear not."

And then, Jesus declared His endless life, "And am alive forevermore."
We have a risen, living Saviour.
He is sitting at the right hand of the Father.
We have our Saviour, Jesus Christ, in heaven interceding for us.

And then to close, Jesus said, "Amen, and hath the keys of hell and of death."
He is "God over all, blessed forever."
His dominion is over land and sea, and over heaven and all the universe
and the regions of the dead.
He is Lord of all.
"He hath the keys of hell and of death."

There is comfort in knowing that He holds the keys of life and death.
Every Christian can shout with Paul:
"O death where is thy sting!
O grave where is thy victory
."

Knowing that Jesus holds the keys, we will not fear death!
So we have seen the abundance of comfort for the apostle John.
And that same abundance of comfort is also there for us.

How much of your life as Jesus occupy?

And I would ask those who are lost and unsaved without Jesus, may you hear the voice
of His Holy Spirit bringing conviction to your soul, and may you hear and fall
at His feet as dead, and hear him say to you:
"Fear not, I am he that liveth, and was dead, and am alive forevermore,
and am, therefore, able to save unto the uttermost them that come unto God by me,
seeing I ever live to make intercession for thee
."

"All hail the power of Jesus' Name! Let angels prostrate fall;
Bring forth the royal diadem, and crown Him Lord of all.
Bring forth the royal diadem, and crown Him Lord of all.

Sinners, whose love can ne'er forget the wormwood and the gall,
Go spread your trophies at His feet, and crown Him Lord of all.
Go spread your trophies at His feet, and crown Him Lord of all.

O that, with yonder sacred throng, we at His feet may fall,
Join in the everlasting song, and crown Him Lord of all,
Join in the everlasting song, and crown Him Lord of all
!"
-- By Miles Lane,1779


Sermon adapted from several sources by Dr. Harold L. White