Saturday, June 2, 2007

The 24 Elders

This post be a place for you to discuss the identity of the 24 elders as discussed in the E.R. model. It will be updated on a periodic basis. Included in the discussion will be:

  • Do the 24 elders match a pattern for servants of the high priest under the Levitical priesthood?
  • The reasons why the 24 are not the 12 apostles and 12 tribes of Israel.
  • The various reasons why the 24 elders cannot be the raptured church in heaven.

Until then, please feel free post questions or comments on this topic!

In Christ,


Anonymous said...

In Revelation 5:8 it says "...For You were slain,And have redeemed us to God by Your blood..." is sung by the 24 elders. Only man is eligible for redemption,so the elders must be redeemed saints, not angels. Also in chapter 4 the 24 elders have crowns which is also something that is given to saints.

David W. Lowe said...

Dear Anonymous,

1. On your first point, you are using the KJV of Rev. 5:10, which is based on the Textus Receptus. The majority of the translations are based on older and more plentiful witnesses. Here is what they render for Rev. 5:10:

Rev 5:10

(ALT) and made them kings and priests to our God, and they will reign on the earth."

(ASV) and madest them to be unto our God a kingdom and priests; and they reign upon earth.

(CEV) You let them become kings and serve God as priests, and they will rule on earth."

(ESV) and you have made them a kingdom and priests to our God, and they shall reign on the earth."

(GNB) You have made them a kingdom of priests to serve our God, and they shall rule on earth."

(GW) You made them a kingdom and priests for our God. They will rule as kings on the earth."

(ISV) You made them a kingdom and priests for our God, and they will reign on the earth."

(NET.) You have appointed them as a kingdom and priests to serve our God, and they will reign on the earth."

(RV) and madest them to be unto our God a kingdom and priests; and they reign upon the earth.

Notice the pronouns are "them" and "they", rather than "us" and "we"? The translators of the New English Translation (, had this to say about this controversy:

“The vast majority of witnesses have aujtouv” (autous, “them”) here, while the Textus Receptus reads hJma’” (Jhmas, “us”) with insignificant support . . .There is no question that the original text read aujtouv” (“them”) here.”

Therefore, for these Greek scholars who translated the NET Bible, there was NO QUESTION that the passage should be translated with third person "they" and "them", not "us" and "we". There is much more to be said about this.

2. On your second point, yes, the 24 elders have crowns, but they were not "given" crowns like saints are. It simply states that they had crowns of gold on their heads.

First, believers are not given crowns of "gold", but rather crowns of "righteousness", "rejoicing", "life", and "glory".

Second, golden crowns are said to be on the evil creatures from the abyss in Revelation 9:

Rev 9:7 And the shapes of the locusts were like unto horses prepared unto battle; and on their heads were as it were crowns like gold, and their faces were as the faces of men.

So, should we assume that these being are humans because they have crowns? No, we must depend on the context of the scripture. And just as in Rev. 9 it is clear that the beings are not human, so the context and description of Rev. 4-5 makes it clear that the 24 elders are not human.

Your response?

In Christ,

Anonymous said...

To further reinforce that the 24 are not angels, in Rev 5:11 "And I beheld, and I heard the

voice of many angels round about the throne and the beasts and the elders..." the elders are

distinguished from the others. Further, believers, saints, are given white robes, crowns(victor), and will sit down with Christ on thrones. The combined imagery and characteristics of these elders in total is that of saints.

David W. Lowe said...


Did you read my prior post? It addresses what you pointed out in your second comment.

Your point that the "angels" are distinguished from the 24 elders is correct. But it doesn't address whether the 24 elders are non-human, supernatural beings.

Would you agree with me that the 4 living creatures are non-human?

Please read my first comment and then read Earthquake Resurrection for more information:

In Christ,

Theoferrum said...

Actually the matter is fairly simple to understand.

The point is that when Isaiah was caught up to heaven, the 24 Elders were not there and yet, when John was caught up to heaven, they were.

If they were Angels they would have been there in the day of Isaiah and, therefore, they are not angels and, further, that means that there were men resurrection between his days and those of John and Matthew records for us that at the time that Y'shua was resurrected so were 'many' saints who assuredly ascended to heaven with him forty days later to become those 24 Elders.

Theoferrum said...

One more point on this for your consideration is that Angels don't reign on earth, men do.


David T. Hill

Anonymous said...

When I read Zechariah 3:1-8, it seems to me that Joshua is being made one of the 24 elders.