Scripture Reading: Esther 6:1-8:17 / Revelation 4:1-11 / Psalm 142:1-7
A sight that is becoming more common in professional sports today is when athletes acknowledge God after a victory, touchdown, home run or winning shot. Some get on one knee and bow their head, others point to the sky while some make the sign of the cross on their chest.
Quarterback Tim Tebow is recognized but also scrutinized and criticized for unashamedly giving praise to God for his accomplishments. He would kneel, place his elbow on his knee and rest his head on his closed hand. His giving of thanks has also been called “Tebowing”- when someone gets down on a knee and starts praying, even if everyone else around them is doing something completely different.
The world is uncomfortable with praising God yet heaven will be a place of continual praise and worship to the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. We find angelic beings, magnificent creatures and people of all walks of life giving praise and worship to God for all eternity.
John witnessed four living creatures continually giving praise to The Lord day and night saying, “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty, who was, and is, and is to come.” (Revelation 4:8) As the creatures exalted The Lord Almighty, the twenty-four elders were overcome by the majesty and glory of the Lord. They were brought to their knees in humility and worship at the mention of God’s holiness.
“The twenty-four elders fall down before him who sits on the throne, and worship him who lives for ever and ever. They lay their crowns before the throne…” (4:10) As victory crowns were given to Roman athletes for their success, these elders were given crowns as a reward of their faithfulness and spiritual victories.
They were moved as they stood in the presence of The Almighty. The twenty-four elders bowed down to the supreme, eternal and worthy God and laid their crowns down before Him. They cast their crowns of achievement and reward back to the One who gave the crowns to them. Their crowns were only possible because of God’s grace, salvation and goodness.
We as well are given crowns that represent our accomplishments, achievements and life’s work - all that we have done for Christ. Those crowns do not rightfully belong to us because they’re graciously made possible by Christ. If it weren’t for Christ there would be no accomplishments or crowns. Our victory over sin and death was not secured by our strength but by the divine work of Christ on a cross and in a grave. We don’t have to wait until we get to heaven to cast our crowns at His feet…we can lay all of our accomplishments, rewards and giftings down at His throne of grace. Worship is not to be restricted to heaven…but rehearsed on earth!