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The Lamb

Today God has given me something in Revelation 5, verses 5 to 7, which say:

And one of the elders said to me, “Weep no more; behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has conquered, so that he can open the scroll and its seven seals.” And between the throne and the four living creatures and among the elders I saw a Lamb standing, as though it had been slain, with seven horns and with seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth. And he went and took the scroll from the right hand of him who was seated on the throne. (Revelation 5:5-7)

We are not given all the details here. However, we can infer that this scroll is very possibly the book of life, in which the names of all believers are written (see Revelation 5:1-4 for more context); we can infer this from both John’s weeping that there are none who can open the scroll, and later by who it is that can open the scroll.

With the above in mind, we need to ask ourselves: Who is the Lion of the tribe of Judah? Who is the Root of David that has conquered? The answer can only be Jesus! Only Jesus is as strong and powerful as a lion, and descended from David, and also in the tribe of Judah (see Matthew 1:3 and 1:6). What’s more, only he is the one who has conquered. Notice also that no where in the passage does it mention what Jesus has conquered. This is because there isn’t any one thing Jesus has conquered; He didn’t just conquer death, nor did he just conquer Satan or Hell. He conquered everything. The mighty lion of Judah has defeated all who opposed Him.

Yet… Who is it that John sees when he looks at this strong and mighty lion? John sees a lamb, looking as though it had been slain. He doesn’t see the strong and mighty lion that the elder had claimed to be there. No, rather he sees one of the most meek, humble, and lowly creatures on the planet. What’s more, while just a sheep would’ve been enough, this one looked like it had been slain. What could this thing ever have accomplished? It’s just a pathetic creature, and a dead one at that. To answer that, let’s take a look at a different passage:

29 The next day he [John] saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! (John 1:29)

In the Old Testament, a priest would offer sacrifices for sins. There were various animals for various types of sacrifices; one might offer a dove, or an entire ox, depending on the situation. However, there’s one specific time that a lamb was required: Passover. In the original Passover, every family had to sacrifice a lamb to keep the angel of death from killing their firstborn son; it was only by the death of this lamb that that family would be spared.\

You see, our situation is (or was, if you’ve come to Christ) more dire than that of the Israelites during the first Passover. We are in danger of not only loosing the life of our firstborn son, if you have one, but also of loosing our very soul. We have done innumerable wrongs and crimes against God, and so we needed a sacrifice in proportion to what we’ve done. This is why we need Jesus. Yes He is the mighty and conquering lion of Judah, but He is also the pure and innocent sacrifice for sins that is necessary to appease God’s wrath! Jesus had to not only defeat Satan, but also endure the full wrath of God for sins he didn’t commit – for sins that it isn’t even in His nature to commit. That is to say, for your sins, and for my sins.

For every sin, the Old Testament shows us there is a punishment. You do X whenever Y is true, or you receive A whenever B is true. You offer an dove (just for example) when you’ve done something small, you offer something larger if you’ve done something worse. Whatever the crime was, there must be a sacrifice equal to it. Jesus, however, was not at all equal to the collective sins of the entire World from eternity passed to eternity future. He was not equal to it, because He is overpay. He is more than enough to atone for what we’ve done, and then some. This is why He is called by John “the Lamb that takes away the sins of the World,” and is shown as a slain lamb in our passage in Revelation – Because he is the final sacrifice! There can be no more sacrifices to atone for sin after Him because there is no longer a need or purpose for them.

If we ask Him to save us, He is faithful to do so, in every area of our life. It doesn’t matter if you’re a Christian already or not, we as Christians still stumble (and will continue to do so until we’re taken out of these bodies of flesh). However, Jesus, just as he was more than enough to atone for our sins, can also give us more than enough strength to overcome any temptation or sin struggle. Paul tells us that God will always make a way out whenever we are tempted, and that “way” is the way, the truth, and the life. So then, we ought to take our problems to Him (in prayer). There is no reason not to, and every to do so.

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Posted by on February 25, 2014 in Delivered Through Love

 

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Protection – God’s Wing Covers Us – Answers Comment.

Hello again!

I apologize for making a change from the normal post on a part of Isaiah, but very recently I have received a comment on one of my blog posts, and I would just like to clarify a few things:

First off, I would like you to understand that I appreciate these comments a lot, and that I appreciate everyone’s point of view on a subject… And I in no way am I attempting to harm anyone when I answer their questions in a post – Here’s the comment in question -:

Mitzi says:

I’m glad you are so invested in sharing God’s word with others. I’ve been reading a few of your latest posts and had to comment on this one.

“In short; because Jesus took God’s wrath on himself, and in doing so also gave us his spirit, we are protected from God’s wrath – there is none left! – and we are protected from the Devil.” (quote from you)
This is not a fallacy, in itself, but it’s not entirely true because you left something important out. It’s actually not that short of the “once saved, always saved” doctrine, which is false. We’re only protected from the devil and God’s wrath if we obey the call of the gospel by hearing(Romans 10:17), believing(John 8:24; Mark 16:16), repenting(Acts 2:38), confessing Christ(Romans 10:9-10), being baptized(immersed)(Acts 2:38, 8:35-39), and continuing in obedient faith(Romans 12:1-2, James 1:19-27). Revelation clearly tells us that our names can be blotted out of the Book of Life(Rev. 3:5), but if we overcome and keep our robes washed(continue in steadfast obedience), we may enter God’s city(heaven)(Rev. 22:14).

Remember 1 Peter 5:8-9. If simply believing in Christ were enough to keep us safe, God would not have seen it necessary to warn us to resist the devil. The devil is more interested in devouring Christians than the rest of the world because he has already “gotten”, for lack of a better word, the hearts of the ungodly, but we(Christians) are still striving to please God instead of the devil.

So keep spreading the gospel as you can, but spread every side of it because we don’t get justified by God through Christ at no cost on our own part(as tiny as it is in comparison to Jesus giving His life for us).

And mine:

Thank you for your point of view and the encouragement to keep on spreading the Gospel. However, I would like to point a few things out, first off Isaiah 64:6 – All of us have become like one who is unclean,
and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags;
we all shrivel up like a leaf,
and like the wind our sins sweep us away. – clearly states that it is impossible for us to work our way to heaven. Let me give you two examples:

1. As a pastor once put it; it’s like attempting to row a steam-engine-boat with one paddle against the current. It’s impossible to please God apart from Jesus! … You row as far as you can, and Jesus takes you the rest of the way isn’t going to work.

2. In essence you’re saying that Jesus’ dying for you doesn’t really mean anything… Here’s the example; two people are trying to kill you, some guy sees this happening and tries to stop them at the cost of his own life… What your saying, is that in essence we have to – instead of continuing forward running away – go back and try to beat up the men. It just doesn’t work as seen in romans:

“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).

I believe you also brought up Revelation 3:5:

5′(O)He who overcomes will thus be clothed in (P)white garments; and I will not (Q)erase his name from the book of life, and (R)I will confess his name before My Father and before His angels. (Revelation 3:5)

I can see how you would get their from the “and I will not erase his name from the book of life” section… And therefore from that section we can see that it is possible to be blotted out of the book of life, but the question is now “how does that happen?”. Let’s look at Luke, Mark, and Matthew to answer that question shall we:

“And everyone that says a word against the Son of Man, that will be forgiven; But he that blasphemes against The Holy Spirit will not be forgiven. (Luke 12:10)

“Whoever blasphemes against The Holy Spirit will never have forgiveness, but is guilty of everlasting sin.” (Mark 3:29)

“Therefore I say to you, any sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven men, but blasphemy against the Spirit shall not be forgiven. And whoever shall speak a word against the Son of Man, it shall be forgiven him; but whoever shall speak against the Holy Spirit, it shall not be forgiven him, either in this age, or in the age to come”. (Matthew 12:31-32)

So, by simply not being baptized or “continuing in obedient faith” we won’t be blotted out of the book of life.

As for your argument about; If simply believing in Christ were enough to keep us safe, God would not have seen it necessary to warn us to resist the devil. – I beg to differ. Believing in Christ IS enough to keep us safe, and God simply want’s to prepare us in advance for the hardships and difficulties he will allow the Devil to put upon us.

I would like to point something out now:

By believing in Christ, we have the fruits of the Spirit, I believe you would agree with that… The fruits of the spirit are love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. As we can see by looking at Galatians 5:22-23. Jesus gave us the Holy Spirit when he left as seen in John 16:7:

7 Nevertheless I tell you the truth. It is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I depart, I will send Him to you.

Therefore we can say that as a direct effect of Jesus dying for us on the cross and rising again for us, we have the Holy Spirit or “helper” in the NKJV. And as a direct effect of our having the Holy Spirit we will do all the things you mentioned such as being baptized, confessing Christ etc… However, our doing those things is not a necessity to our salvation… Once again I honestly do appreciate your point of view, I just don’t agree with it.

– Joshua

So; thank you Mitzi for sharing your concerns with me about my blog post… And as for everyone else, if you happen to have a concern as well, please feel very free to comment.

You are loved!

Joshua Cleveland

 
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Posted by on May 16, 2011 in Answering Comments

 

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