Q. Regarding the “24 elders” (Rev. 4:4, 11:16, etc.). We understand that these 24 elders are “us” (the Church-age believers). Do you believe that all believers are somehow “collectively embodied” within the 24 elders or are the 24 elders symbolic? Or is it possible that we will all individually get a chance (when our “rotation” is called) to sit on one of the “24 thrones” much like the duties were rotated after the lots were cast for certain activities in the House of the LORD as described in 1 Chronicles chapters 24 & 25?
A. In Rev. 1:1 John said that in the process of giving him the book, the Lord signified it. The Greek word means He rendered it into signs. One of those signs is the appearance of 24 elders at the throne of God who are seen no where else in Scripture. For reasons I’ve explained before I believe they represent the Church. Just how they do has not been revealed, so we can’t tell anything specific about our future life from observing them. We just know that no other explanation of their identity fits either the context of the verses in which they appear or the theology of the song they sing.