6And I looked, and behold, in the midst of the throne and of the four living creatures, and in the midst of the priests, stood a Lamb as though it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent out into all the earth. 7Then He came and took the scroll out of the right hand of Him who sat on the throne. 8Now when He had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four priests fell down before the Lamb, each having a harp, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints. 9And they sang a new song, saying: “You are worthy to take the scroll, And to open its seals; For You were slain, And have redeemed us to God by Your blood Out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation,
10 And have made us kings and priests to our God; And we shall reign on the earth.” 11Then I looked, and I heard the voice of many angels around the throne, the living creatures, and the priests; and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands, 12saying with a loud voice: “Worthy is the Lamb who was slain To receive power and riches and wisdom, And strength and honor and glory and blessing!” 13And every creature which is in heaven and on the earth and under the earth and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, I heard saying: “Blessing and honor and glory and power Be to Him who sits on the throne, And to the Lamb, forever and ever!” 14Then the four living creatures said, “Amen!” And the twenty-four elders fell down and worshiped Him who lives forever and ever.
1. Find five similarities between this account of Revelation and the Eucharist/Liturgy?
There are many similarities between the image of Revelation 4 and 5 and the Eucharist. Here is some examples: the priests with their crowns and garments, the bowls of incense (incensors), the Lamb that stands as if it was slain, the throne, the songs of “worthy and just”, and the praise, the description of the different choirs, the scroll with the writings, the seal, the falling down before the Lamb.
2. What is the meaning of standing Lamb though it looks like it had been slain?
It is a living sacrifice, a miracle that only God can perform, and this miracle is the Cross and the Resurrection of Christ. When the angel appeared to the women at the tomb, he spoke to them in this manner saying, “Do not be alarmed. You seek Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He is risen! He is not here.” When our Lord appeared to the disciples, He showed them the places of the nails and the spear. His sacrifice is a perpetual, ever-lasting sacrifice, yet He is alive by His resurrection. Likewise, the Eucharist is body and blood, separated from one another (meaning He should be dead), but is the body and blood of the living Christ. That is why the Lamb stands as if it was slain.
Romans 15:16: That I might be a minister (liturgist or priest, in Greek erephs) of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, ministering the gospel of God, that the offering of the Gentiles might be acceptable, sanctified by the Holy Spirit.
1. Why the apostles never speak of themselves as priests?
Although the New Testament apostles had not used the title “priests” for themselves frequently, yet St Paul in Romans 15:16 uses the word “priest” to describe himself. His usage of the word points to the fulfillment of Malachi 1:11 “’For from the rising of the sun, even to its going down, My name shall be great among the Gentiles; in every place incense shall be offered to My name, and a pure offering; for My name shall be great among the nations,’ says the Lord of hosts.” So the offering of the Gentiles is nothing but the Eucharist. For the first century Jew the title “priest” would evoke images of the bronze altar in the temple in Jerusalem, the bloody sacrifices, all the rituals and regulations of the Old Testament. While the title “priest” for a Gentile would evoke images of idol worship and bloody sacrifices. Maybe that is why the disciples have not used it frequently.