Notice their humility
(Maria Sandberg, "Glimpses of Heaven!" 1880)
"The twenty-four elders fall down before Him who sits on the throne and worship Him who lives forever and ever, and cast their crowns before the throne, saying:
You are worthy, O Lord,
To receive glory and honor and power;
For You created all things,
And by Your will they exist and were created!"
The Church triumphant is represented by the twenty-four elders. Notice their humility. They fall down, and cast their crowns before the Throne, saying, "You are worthy!" They have been learning to do this on earth. When the Holy Spirit begins His work in the soul of man — when He begins to prepare a stone for the spiritual temple, He begins with a lesson of humility, and convinces of sin. And still, as that stone is more and more hewn and fitted for the temple above — deeper and deeper grow the convictions of his own unworthiness, until at length he is taught to abase himself utterly, and give all glory to the Lord.
Are you in this manner becoming every week more fitted for Heaven? Let this glimpse of Heaven lead you to ask, "Do I now abase myself — and exalt my God?"
In this is the true Christian distinguished from the hypocrite. Whatever may be the failings of the Christian, he acts and speaks from a desire to glorify Him. Though self-esteem and self-exaltation are often mixed with his endeavors, still his aim is that God may be glorified, even though it be by his own abasement. The more he is enabled to glorify God — the greater is his humility. And the deeper his self-abasement — the more likely is he to bring honor and glory to his God.
O my soul, let this glimpse of glory forever set aside all notions of self-exaltation. Be now what you will be in Heaven — a humble creature of God, redeemed by the precious blood of the Lamb, living to glorify His name!