Foreword:

Ever wonder what God might have to say to YOU today? Here are things to ponder, and things to receive into your heart. If you have a question, put it in the comments. I respond as much as I can.

A note for all my readers: I've been experimenting with YouTube videos for Bible teaching for a while, and I'm working through Revelation here. My YouTube videos are currently short studies in Matthew, and at present I'm posting videos on Revelation as well. Both appear on the blog, which is turning into a Vlog. I encourage you to subscribe to my YouTube channel for better coverage.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Who is Jesus, According to the Book of Revelation, Part 2?

Revelation, as I mentioned in the previous post, presents the Lord Jesus in four ways.  The first is the vision at the beginning of the book (detailed in the last post).
The second and third are highly symbolic; He is known as the "Lion of the Tribe of Judah," and the "Lamb of God."
Both of these occurrences are designed to bring to our minds a particular way in which Jesus Christ interacts with the universe.
First, He's called the "Lion of the Tribe of Judah (Rev. 5:5)," the only one worthy to open the seven sealed book and to display its contents.  The point of this statement is to remind us that Jesus, as Lion, does not ask for dominion over the earth. He takes it. Just as a lion takes what he wants for food by whatever means are necessary, so Jesus as King of Kings, the "root and offspring of David" will take control of the earth.  The scroll in Rev. 5 is probably some sort of "granting document," or deed, granting King Jesus the rights over all the earth.  He is the only one worthy to unseal, to open, and to read and execute what is written in this book. In other words, all the kings of the earth, who believe the territory over which they now exercise dominion is theirs, are dead wrong.  It belongs to the Son of God, who will take it for Himself.  If there is resistance, it will be handled much as a lion deals with resistance against his will.
The second statement, interestingly enough, comes right on the heels of the first, and this is what John actually sees when he looks at the Person who is to open the seven-sealed scroll (Rev. 5:6ff)--John sees a freshly killed sacrificial lamb, who's redeemed His people with His life's blood:

And I looked, and behold, in the midst of the throne and of the four living creatures, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as though it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent out into all the earth.
7 Then He came and took the scroll out of the right hand of Him who sat on the throne. 
Worthy Is the Lamb 
8 Now when He had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each having a harp, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints.
9 And they sang a new song, saying: " You are worthy to take the scroll, And to open its seals; For You were slain, And have redeemed us to God by Your blood Out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation,
10 And have made us kings and priests to our God; And we shall reign on the earth."
So now we have the Lion of the Tribe of Judah, who's also the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world.
The most important thing is that the Lion and the Lamb are one, and that the Lamb is the reason the Lion can take His kingdom. In short, the Lamb gains the Lion's power because of His sacrifice. He bought the rights to everything with that sacrifice, and according to the text, He communicates them freely to us.
Note the statements in the "new song:" worthy...open...redeemed...kings & priests...we shall reign. What the Lord has done for His people is to make them heirs of everything that is His, simply because they follow Him. Every time He opens one of the seals, our victory is closer, because His is.