And around God's throne there were twenty-four [other] thrones, with twenty-four elders sitting on them. [Note: These "elders" are generally considered to represent all the saved of both covenants. The number twenty-four is thought to be derived from the twelve patriarchs and the twelve apostles]. They were dressed in white clothing and had golden crowns on their heads.
[then] the twenty-four elders fall down in front of Him who sits on His throne and worship Him who lives forever and ever. And they will throw their crowns in front of the throne and say,
And the twenty-four elders, who sit in front of God on their thrones, fell on their faces and worshiped God,
Jesus said to them, "Truly I tell you, [since] you have become my followers, in the time of new beginnings [i.e., the church age], when the Son of man sits on His glorious throne, you apostles will also sit on twelve thrones, judging [i.e., through their writings] the twelve tribes of Israel [i.e., God's people].
Then I saw thrones, with individuals sitting on them who had been given [authority] to judge. And I [also] saw the souls of those who had been decapitated because they had testified about Jesus and [had proclaimed] the message of God. [They are] the ones who had refused to worship the beast or his statue, and had not received his mark on their foreheads or on their hands. And these ones lived again and ruled with Christ for a thousand years.
so you can eat and drink at my table in my [coming] kingdom. [Also] you will sit on [twelve] thrones [See Matt. 19:28], judging the twelve tribes of Israel [i.e., judging God's people through their writings].
"But you have a few people [there] in Sardis who have not [spiritually] polluted their clothing, and they will walk with me in [robes of] white [i.e., probably now on earth as well as in heaven], for they are worthy.
And when He had taken the book, the four living beings and the twenty-four elders fell down in front of the Lamb [i.e., to worship Him]. Each one of them held [in his hands] a harp and a golden bowl full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints [See Psa. 141:2; Rev. 8:3-4].
And the four living beings said, "May it be so." And the elders fell down and worshiped.
And all the angels were standing around the throne and around the [twenty-four] elders and the four living beings. And they fell down on their faces in front of the throne and worshiped God,
So, now there is a crown of righteousness reserved for me, which the Lord, who is a just Judge, will award me on that day [i.e., the judgment day], and not to me only, but also to everyone who has loved [the prospect of] His appearing.
Do not be afraid of the things you are about to suffer. [For] look, the devil is about to throw some of you into prison, so that you may be tested, and you will suffer persecution for ten days. [But], you should be faithful [to God] even to the point of dying [for Him], and I will give you the crown of [never ending] life.
And a white robe was given to each one of them, and they were told to rest a little while longer, until the [full] number of their fellow servants and their brothers would be killed like they were.
After seeing [all] these things, I looked and there [I saw] a huge crowd, which no one could count, from every nation, and tribe, and race, and language group standing in front of the throne [of God] and in front of the Lamb. They were dressed in white robes and had palm tree branches in their hands.
Then one of the [twenty-four] elders asked me, "Who are these ones dressed in white robes, and where did they come from?"
And the locusts looked like horses prepared for battle; and on their heads [they wore] what appeared to be golden crowns, and their faces looked like the faces of human beings.