Vision of God  
Have you ever heard someone say, “While I was dead I saw a great light, and then came back to life”? Have you ever wondered if this can be true? What does it mean? Why did it happen? One man, an agnostic, has written a book about his near death experience (NDE). In his book, we discover that he died when his pickup fell on him, flattened his chest, and killed him. He was “dead” for about 15 minutes. Yet, he returned to life. He said that while he was “dead” he traveled through a tunnel and saw the “Light of God.” He said that God sent him back to tell everyone that God loves without any conditions. He wrote about seeing Jesus and asking God many questions. Eventually, he revealed that the “Jesus” he talked with was not the Jesus who walked this earth. He believes that we are a part of god, and yet we are all god. This is revealing because Jesus did not teach that we are a part of god, nor did He teach that we are god. He did not teach that we all went to heaven either. This man did not see God. He saw something else.
Heavenly Vision. The Apostle John saw God too, but John was alive - not dead. He did not have a NDE. The apostle had a different experience. He saw God in a vision.

After these things I looked, and behold, a door standing open in heaven, and the first voice which I had heard, like the sound of a trumpet speaking with me, said, “Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after these things.” Immediately I was in the Spirit; and behold, a throne was standing in heaven, and One sitting on the throne. (NASB) Rev. 4:1-2

The Holy Spirit gave the apostle a vision of heaven, a throne, and of One sitting on the throne. We will discover soon that the One sitting on the throne is God. We will also read that there were others around the throne too!

God's Throne Room
God's Throne Room

Revelation 2-3 are about the past. In our last study, we saw that since the rapture will occur before the Tribulation, it must occur between Revelation 3 and 4. Revelation 4 takes us to the start of the Tribulation, and we are able to see into this future event through the apostle’s vision. What we are about to see are the events which will occur in heaven before the Tribulation starts.
Throne Room. In the vision, the apostle saw the One sitting on the throne, twenty-four elders, and four creatures sitting around the throne.

And He who was sitting was like a jasper stone and a sardius in appearance; and there was a rainbow around the throne, like an emerald in appearance. And around the throne were twenty-four thrones; and upon the thrones I saw twenty-four elders sitting, clothed in white garments, and golden crowns on their heads. (NASB) Rev. 4:3-4

The One sitting on the throne is God the Father. He is the first person of the Trinity. The apostle does not describe Him as simply light. Yes, God is light; but He is more than that. He is like a jasper and sardius stone with an emerald bow surrounding Him.
Revelation 21:11 says that a jasper stone was a crystal-clear stone. We are not sure, but it sounds like a diamond. The sardius stone was named after the city of Sardius and was ruby red in color. A diamond and red ruby make a wonderful color combination on a bracelet or necklace. Just imagine how God must look with the emerald bow. Why did we say emerald bow and not rainbow? The answer is found in the Greek word translated as “rainbow.” The Greek word actually means “bow.” So, God is surrounded by an emerald bow and flashes of lightening and sounds of thunder.

And from the throne proceed flashes of lightning and sounds and peals of thunder. . . . (NASB) Rev. 4:5

What an amazing vision of God!

Outline of Revelation

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