Useful Bible Studies > Revelation Commentary > chapter 5

Who can open the scroll?

Revelation 5:2-3

John had seen an important scroll, that is, a book, in Godís right hand. In order to carry out Godís future plans, someone needed to open and to read that book.

However, there was a serious difficulty. 7 objects called seals, which we described in our notes on verse 1, were on the book. That made the book private, and its contents secret. Nobody could open the book to read it unless they first broke the seals.

So, the question was who had the right to break those seals. An important angel (a special servant of God in heaven) declared that the angels must search for the person with that right. Perhaps one of the most important angels in heaven might have the right to open the book. Perhaps a great ruler on earth, or a very holy man, might have that right.

It seems that there was then a pause. The angels were searching for the right person. They searched heaven; they searched the earth; they even searched the world of spirits.

John waited anxiously for news of the results of this search. He realised the importance of this matter. He also knew that Christ had given him an important duty to record these things (1:19).

When the news came, it was a great shock for John. Nobody had the right to open that book, although Godís plans for his people depended on it. No angel had that right; no person had that right; no spirit had that right.

The reason for this search becomes clear when we read verse 5. God wanted John to see the importance of Christ. John needed to understand that Godís plans depend completely on Christ.

Next part: What was in the scroll? (Revelation 5:4)


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© 2016, Keith Simons.