And I heard a voice from heaven like the roar of many waters and like the sound of loud thunder. The voice I heard was like the sound of harpists playing on their harps, and they were singing a new song before the throne and before the four living creatures and before the elders.
The next time I hear someone complaining about the volume of the sound system in a worship service, I want to point them to the passage. John said the worship in heaven was loud. The voice from the heavenly throng was like the roar of a waterfall. Ever heard that watery roar? I have. I have experienced it from both sides. Alberta Falls is a small fall in Rocky Mountain National Park. And it is loud when you get to it. In fact, one of my great anticipations when hiking is to begin hearing it a few hundred yards away on the trail. It quickens my pace. And if you know what you are doing, you can climb behind it and sit on a wet ledge with the cold falls all around you. You can’t begin to describe the loudness. You can shout to the person next to you and they will not hear. But the volume is impressive.
This is the volume of the voice that accompanies the “new song” of worship in this passage. It is loud. It is also musical, described as the sound of harpists playing on their harps. I hear something symphonic in this description. Multiple stringed instruments and a loud volume all accompanying a new song coming before the throne of God. He seems to be OK with volume. In fact, it seems to surround His throne.
Why is it that my easiest temptation is soft Christianity? I keep it low-key. Not so much in public worship, but in personal practice. If heaven is a place of unbelievable volume and harmony, what should my life sound like and look like if it has been touched and changed and controlled by a magnificent God? I probably ought to make a little noise!