John saw that, in heaven, Christians from every nation are praising God. They give honour to God the Father because he rules all things; they mention Godís throne (royal seat) to show his authority. They give honour to Christ because he died to save them. They call him the Lamb in order to emphasise the importance of his death. Formerly, God accepted the sacrifice (death) of some animals (including lambs) so that he could forgive his peopleís wrong deeds (John 1:29). In the same way, because of Christís death, his people receive his salvation.
So in heaven, Christians declare that salvation belongs to God, and to Christ. A similar statement appears in Jonah 2:9. The meaning is that salvation comes only from God, by means of Christ (Psalm 62:1; John 14:6). People can do nothing that will earn salvation for them (Romans 4:1-8). Christians do not deserve salvation. It is Godís free gift.
The word salvation means, simply, safety. It is the result when God saves a person: that person receives his (Godís) salvation. God forgives that person, so that the person receives a right relationship with him. God has rescued that person from the punishment for his evil deeds, from the devil and from hell. We could say that God has made that person safe. That person will always be safe, because he has become one of Godís people.
Of course that person will still suffer from dangers, difficulties and death in this world (John 16:33). Although Godís salvation is a present reality, sometimes it seems more like a promise for the future. However, God really has saved that person. Those troubles are only temporary. In heaven and in the New Jerusalem, there are no such troubles for the people whom God has saved (7:15-17; 21:3-4).
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© 2016, Keith Simons.