A Door Open In Heaven
“After this I looked, and behold, a door standing open in heaven!” (Rev 4:1)
In the economy of God times of dark evil precede the most intense revelation (Isa 9:2). As I headed out by car for the city yesterday morning an unusual sight grasped my attention. The Lord has spoken to me through rainbow phenomena over many years. In Argentina by concentric spectral circles above the Iguassu Falls, a rainbow beginning in the Swan River and ending in my car, seeing a rainbow whilst flying over the Sinai desert, rainbows around the sun over the Jordan River and the Mediterranean near Mt Carmel, and two rainbows in one day in Cambodia spanning land and water. In each case there was a connected message to do with the “mystery of God” (Eph 3:9-10). So when on Monday I saw a very broad rainbow running from earth skywards directly in front of me and filling my whole field of view I knew the Lord had a message for the Church in Perth.
Rainbows and Judgement
There are a variety of rainbow communications in the Old Testament. The most famous rainbow of these follows Noah’s Flood; when God says, “I have set my bow in the cloud” as a sign that never to destroy the earth by water again this is his hanging up his bow of war (Gen 9:8-17). The rainbow is a symbol that the Lord does not delight in being a “man of war” fighting against his created children (Ex 15:3). Quite differently, Joseph’s “robe of many colours” is a sign that he is the most loved son of his father’s sons, his superlative wisdom will save Israel in its time of trial (Gen 37:3-4; 45:5ff.). When the LORD calls Ezekiel the prophet sees the glory of God in dazzling form, “like the appearance of the bow that is in the cloud on the day of rain, so was the appearance of the brightness all around.” (Ezek 1:28). The brilliance of the polychromatic splendour of the colours of the rainbow reveals the weight of the majesty of God’s awesome presence. Ezekiel is totally overcome by the glory of God, and will become a prophet of divine judgement.
In the New Testament the rainbow images grace with perfect clarity in Revelation. Passing through an open door into heaven the first thing John sees is God on his throne, “around the throne was a rainbow” (Rev 4:5). This bow is a complete circle, a sign of the fullness of grace and the coming new creation where, unlike the earth after the Flood, judgement is impossible. The next aspect of the vision explains why in the immediate divine presence there is no wrath (cf. Isa 27:4).
Judgement Taken Away
After the apparently unsurpassable vision of the Creator in Revelation 5 something even more marvellous is unveiled. Without expectation the “Lamb standing as slaughtered” appears and shares the throne of God (Rev 5:6-7. 13). We know this Lamb is Jesus, so that Father and Son are encircled by the rainbow of glory (John 1:29). All creation unconstrainedly gives praise to God and the Lamb; for this vision of a crucified and resurrected Christ means that a human being share the entirety of the glory of the eternal God (John 17:5; 1 Tim 4:5; Rev 5:13).
Jesus shares the glory because he had taken away our judgement forever (John 19:30). This taking away of judgement is the open door into heaven and the rainbow splendour of God for us (Matt 1:23; 28:20). Jesus is not alone in his glory. The “Hallelujahs” and “Amens” of the Bible find their highest concentration and climax in the Marriage Supper of the Lamb (Rev 19:1, 3, 4). For you and me this can only have one amazing meaning!
As raised up and seated with Jesus you and I are inside the rainbow circle of God’s glory, in this completed circle of grace there can be NO DAMNING JUDGEMENT (Rom 5:1; 8:1; Eph 2:6). As part of the Bride of Christ we are all clothed with the rainbow of God, the secret wisdom of God of God is all over us and in the eyes of the Spirit we are a beautiful and brilliant site (Rom 13:12, 14; Eph 3:9-10; Rev 5:6). This glorious heavenly spectacle is however often obscured from our sight, but in the economy of God times of darkness precedes the most intense revelation.
As satanically inspired evil powers slaughter the saints of God across the globe these words hold a profound revelation; “[the beast] spoke terrible words of blasphemy against God, slandering his name and his dwelling—that is, those who dwell in heaven.7 And the beast was allowed to wage war against God’s holy people and to conquer them.” (Rev 13:6-7). The Holy Spirit is speaking to the Church, seated with Christ in heaven, that only access to eternal realms can bring victory in this final conflict between good and evil (Eph 2:6; Col 3:1). There is but one door open into heaven, the Lamb standing as slain in the rainbow glory of God where judgement has been taken away.
The cross has rolled away the darkness of sin, Satan and death over us, we have entered the cloud of glory, we are “light in the Lord” (Eph 5:8). Nothing God calls you to do can be insignificant or trivial. Standing in the Lamb slaughtered and raised your life shares in God’s own “weight of glory” (2 Cor 4:17). Fear and intimidation fall away as by faith we go through the gate of glory into heaven. “What can man do to me?” that has not already been conquered by Christ (Heb 13:6). Look again at the rainbow and see its message.
Rainbows are intense spiritual phenomena and the message of the one I saw on Monday is very clear. For the Church in Perth which desires to hear what the Spirit is saying there is “a door standing open in heaven” (Rev 2:7; 4:1). This is not an entrance for popularity or prosperity, but an invitation to enter that the glory of Christ crucified might be shed abroad in every place, whatever the cost. The greater the cost carried for the kingdom of God, the more brilliantly his rainbow glory will shine and the more intensely his awesome presence will become. If there seems to be no open door into heaven there can be only one possible explanation, we have taken our eyes off the Lamb. In this hour of darkness we must renew our call to be disciples of Christ; “OUR LAMB HAS CONQUERED LET US FOLLOW HIM”.
 The words on the seal of the Moravian Church.