The One on the Throne
In the Book of Revelation, the Apostle, John, beholds God upon the throne as two different jewels, a jasper and a sardine stone. Both of these stones are from the same family of quartz known as chalcedony.
Jasper comes in many colors, but there is one type of jasper called crystallius, which is clear as crystal. Revelation 21:11 describes the glory of God which is the light of the Bride, the New Jerusalem “like a stone most precious, even like a jasper stone, clear as crystal.” So we can assume that this type of jasper was the similitude of God that John was beholding.
The second stone is a sardine which comes in two types, a carnelian which is a translucent form of quartz ranging in color from a flesh colored yellow to a deep red. The Holman Bible translates sardine here as carnelian. The blood red varieties of this stone were greatly valued for engravings and seals.
So in this vision of the throne of God, we see Him portrayed symbolically as a great crystal jasper with possibly a deep blood red translucent carnelian centered within the jasper, like a heart perhaps, or a soul; representing Christ, the image of the invisible God, the one God represented by two glorious stones.
“I and My Father are one.” - (John 10:30).
Before the throne are seven lamps of fire, which are the seven spirits of God –Revelation 4:5. The Scriptures tell us that God is one spirit – (John 4:24, Deut. 6:4). However, because He is omnipresent He has the ability to operate as more than one. "And it shall come to pass afterward that I will pour out My Spirit upon all flesh" - Joel 2:28. We can see from this Scripture that God has the ability by His Spirit to operate in multiples of one Spirit. The seven spirits here in Revelation 4:5, are also called “eyes” in Rev. 5:6, which are the seven spirits of God sent forth into all the earth. Plural eyes represent God’s omnipresent Holy Spirit. One eye can see in one place, two eyes can see more and many eyes can see all over the place! Fire in the Scriptures represents the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:2,3).
The Holy Omnipresent Spirit of God which proceeds from the Father (John 15:26) and is the spirit of the Father (Matthew 10:20) is also Christ’s spirit (Romans 8:9) as represented by the seven eyes which are the seven spirits of God that are in the Lamb (Revelation 5:6) representing Jesus in His human office as the offering for our sins (Isaiah 53:5).
Jesus, the Messiah is represented as a stone in Zechariah’s vision – (Zech 3:8,9). In this vision God engraves this stone with seven eyes, the all seeing eyes of His Holy Spirit.
There were two kinds of gem engraving in ancient times. Designs were cut as raised relief above the surface as cameos. Another type of cut is called intaglios where the design is incised into the surface. This type of cut was used as a seal in wax or moist clay.
God has engraved his Spirit in the jewel that is His Son to seal this clay, our softened, repentant hearts with the blood of the Lamb of God. The Father God who directs the operations of His Spirit (Galatians 3:5) is in His Son by His Spirit (John 10:38) and is the glorious light of His church, the radiant collection of gems that are His treasure.
Pliney speaks of a white variety of jasper known as astrios. Through faith in Christ our relationship with God is restored symbolized by this gift of a white stone to those who overcome - (Revelation 2:17). The intimacy of our relationship is represented by the new name in the stone that is that is known only by God and the person who receives it. Because of Christ’s sacrifice for us, we receive this treasure, this precious stone and our names are engraved in God.
copyright 2007 by H.D. Shively
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