In Revelation, John attempts to describe a “you had to be there” out of this world vision within this world language.
Worthy is repeated four times in these verses. It is the one who has earned the 1) right to open the scroll by past faithfulness and who has demonstrated the 2) ability to handle the responsibility of the contents.
It is obvious that only one - the Lamb who appeared as slaughtered is worthy. (ie. Jesus)
What is the scroll?
We do not know for certain, but in John’s time a sealed scroll would have signaled a legal document such as a deed or will. Sealed so that only the rightful, responsible parties could open it. The scroll might be understood as God’s last testament and will for creation. Or maybe it can be understood as the deed to all of creation.
In any regards, Matthew 28 says all “authority” was given to Jesus and now in Revelation we see Jesus being deemed as the rightful party to open the scroll - ie. worthy.
Revelation 5:12 highlights results of the cross for Jesus.
POWER and WEALTH: both can easily lead to corruption and destruction if in the wrong hands. Jesus proved by his life and death that he alone can handle the responsibility of absolute power and wealth.
WISDOM and STRENGTH: both are given only through experience. The cross was the ultimate experience that gives wisdom of God’s plan and the ability to do it.
HONOR, GLORY, and BLESSING: the appropriate response by those impacted by Jesus’ supernatural handling of power, wealth, wisdom and strength.
Those who honor, glory and bless Christ have these in common:
1) Realize that it is God who opens our eyes to our need for Christ and Christ’s worthiness. (Ephesians 2:5)
2) Not only come to the cross - but cling to it. (Romans 12:9)
3) Come to the cross and find two: one for Jesus for our justification; another for us for our sanctification. (Mark 8:34)
4) Commit to walk his path of self-sacrifice. (Romans 8:17)