But one of the elders said to me, ‘Do not weep. Behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has prevailed to open the scroll and to loose the seven seals.’ And I looked, and behold, in the midst of the throne and of the four living creatures, and in the midst of the elders, 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. (Revelation 5:5–6—NKJV)

The word “prevailed” is the translation of the Greek word meaning victory. There is something very heroic, martial and final about the term. It is thoroughly fitting to describe the redemptive work of the Son of God. Nothing short of victory will do when it comes fulfilling the plan of His Father in the salvation of men.

The word is nikao. It has a corollary Hebrew word meaning “to smite.” The general sense of the word is to overcome and conquer, to carry the day, win the cause. The force of the victory is here presented as emphatically once for all—nothing short of final conquest! This total victory is the culmination of all the Old Testament prophecy concerning the Messiah and the New Testament blessed hope of the church, “Even so, come quickly, Lord Jesus.”

In earlier chapters John has already recorded for us the letters from the Lord Jesus to the seven churches calling upon them to be faithful overcomers during their pilgrimage on earth. Now, John is whisked away to the very throne of God and is present at the dawn of the tribulation era where the great prophetic plan of God is about to unfold, for all is in place. It is only left for one to set the plan in motion. There must be one who has qualified to gain the authority to institute the plan. A great cry of invitation goes forth from the throne of God to any order of being whether in heaven or earth. Initially no one steps forward, and John begins to weep. An elder instructs John to cease weeping for Jesus is alive and has conquered.

Jesus, the perfectly sinless God/man, once crucified to death, now lives and stands before the throne of His Father. He fulfills the Old Testament prophecies of kingly lineage in the tribe of Judah. He is the shoot of the family of David. He stands forth as the Lamb of God just as John the baptizer stated, “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29) Even in heaven the Lord will bear the scars of His crucifixion and appear as the One who was slain for the purchase of our salvation. It is by His voluntary and total self-sacrifice that He gained the decisive victory over Satan, sin, and death. Having conquered, He has risen and retains the right to take the sealed scroll and to initiate the culmination of the Father’s plan regarding mankind.

What manner of total victory is this? It is a victory in behalf of all genuine believers. 2 Timothy 1:10 reads, “But has now been revealed by the appearing of our Savior Jesus Christ, who has abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the Gospel.” 1 Corinthians 15:54–55 states, “So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: ‘Death is swallowed up in victory. O Death, where is your sting? O Grave, where is your victory?’ The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” 2 Corinthians 2:14 declares, “Now thanks be to God who always leads us in triumph in Christ.”

Be refreshed by the words of Paul found in Romans 15:12–13, “’There shall be a root of Jesse; and He who shall rise to reign over the Gentiles, in Him the Gentiles shall hope.’ Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Don’t you find great comfort and restful assurance in the victorious Savior? Courageously live and perseveringly hope, for the Lamb of God is alive today and has gained the decisive victory! Trust and obey.