I saw a scroll in the right hand of the One Seated on the Throne. It was written on both sides, fastened with seven seals.
I also saw a powerful Angel, calling out in a voice like thunder, "Is there anyone who can open the scroll, who can break its seals?"
There was no one - no one in Heaven, no one on earth, no one from the underworld - able to break open the scroll and read it.
I wept and wept and wept that no one was found able to open the scroll, able to read it.
One of the Elders said, "Don't weep. Look - the Lion from Tribe Judah, the Root of David's Tree, has conquered. He can open the scroll, can rip through the seven seals."
So I looked, and there, surrounded by Throne, Animals, and Elders, was a Lamb, slaughtered but standing tall. Seven horns he had, and seven eyes, the Seven Spirits of God sent into all the earth.
He came to the One Seated on the Throne and took the scroll from his right hand.
The moment he took the scroll, the Four Animals and Twenty-four Elders fell down and worshiped the Lamb. Each had a harp and each had a bowl, a gold bowl filled with incense, the prayers of God's holy people.
And they sang a new song: Worthy! Take the scroll, open its seals. Slain! Paying in blood, you bought men and women, Bought them back from all over the earth, Bought them back for God.
Then you made them a Kingdom, Priests for our God, Priest-kings to rule over the earth.
I looked again. I heard a company of Angels around the Throne, the Animals, and the Elders - ten thousand times ten thousand their number, thousand after thousand after thousand
Published by permission. Originally published by NavPress in English as THE MESSAGE: The Bible in Contemporary Language copyright 2002 by Eugene Peterson. All rights reserved. (The Message Bible Online)