Big Number (Revelation 5:11-12)

Many years ago, I read a quirky cartoon. A group of visitors were at a science museum. The guide was discussing the fate of the earth and declared, “Within about five billion years, the earth will essentially cease to exist.”

One distressed visitor raised his hand and asked, “I’m sorry, did you say five million or five billion years?”

The guide repeated his statement. “Five billion years.”

The visitor breathed a sigh of relief. “Oh thank goodness. For a moment there, I thought you said five million years!”

The humor in this cartoon, of course, is that it would not make a difference to anyone in that museum or living today whether the earth would end in five million or five billion years. Big numbers. We casually use them but sometimes it is difficult to comprehend the magnitude even if we think we are able. The Bible records a scene in heaven when the Apostle John first beheld the throne of God, the Father. In it, he witnesses a big number of angels worshiping and praising God. It is an awe-inspiring sight!

Then I looked, and I heard the voice of many angels around the throne, the living creatures, and the elders; and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands, saying with a loud voice: “Worthy is the Lamb who was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom, And strength and honor and glory and blessing!” 

Revelation 5:11-12 (NKJV)

I don’t know what number describing the angels surrounding the throne of God represents but I am confident that it is a big number! Other Bible translations have used the word millions. Regardless of the translation, the number is uncountable and incomprehensible for mere mortals to fathom. 

Here is another big number. The universe is estimated to be about 14 billion years old. God created the universe and existed before it ever came into existence. Like the numbers of angels that continually surround His throne in Heaven, the time frame that God has existed is incomprehensible. Trillions times trillions? Only God knows and thanks be to Him that only He can truly comprehend it.

We live in God’s Creation and only experience the smallest fraction of our existence on this earth. If we have confessed and repented of our sins and accepted Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, we will have all of eternity to experience God’s unlimited blessings. 

And THAT is a big number!


Love and trust in the Lord; seek His will in your life.

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