The Roar of the Lion
Several days ago, I wrote about the month of March and stated that other than some periodic snow, we have been blessed with a mild winter. I may have spoken too soon. Because legend has it that if March comes in like a lion, it should go out like a lamb. Well, today we started to experience the roar of the lion. The country is awash in storms.
Last week, snow invaded Oklahoma and the Great Plains states and more recently, it appears that we are in for quite a storm here in Indianpolis. Although I must admit that while it started snowing at 4 pm this afternoon, we don’t have more than an inch or two on the ground and that is great news for those of us who really don’t want to get trapped tomorrow. We were expecting 6 or 7 inches by now and the chance still exists that we will wake up to a white blanket across the community.
Snow this late in the month is a little unusual although not unheard of. But rather than focus on the snow part, I want to concentrate on the lion part. The Scriptures are full of references to the lion. In particular, the Proverbs and several of the minor prophets concentrate on speaking about the king of the jungle. Some of the references are to the literal lion while many of the verses lead to a better understanding of the Lion of Judah, a title reserved for Jesus.
You see, Jesus was a descendant of the tribe of Judah, one of the twelve sons of Jacob, who was later renamed Israel by God Himself. When we think of Jesus, we usually relate Him to King David, another ancestor in the line to Jesus. However, even King David acknowledged that Christ was “before” him. How is that possible? Well, we are told in the first few verses of the Gospel of John that Jesus, known as the Word, was there in the beginning with God. That means that Jesus was there first thing, before the creation of the angels or anything else.
We are also told that everything was created by Him, so he was before King David. However, he was not an ancestor in the physical sense – the Scriptures just tell us that He existed before David – that doesn’t necessarily mean in physical form. Likewise, years after the reign of David, Jesus was born in the little town of Bethlehem, known in the Hebrew as the “house of bread.”
It is an interesting twist that can only be possible due to the eternal nature of God. Jesus, the Word, therefore pre-dated the life of David and also came after David. When Jacob called his sons together to give them his blessing, and he came to his son, Judah, we are told in Gen. 49:9-10, “You are a lion’s cub, O Judah; you return from the prey, my son. Like a lion he crouches and lies down, like a lioness—who dares to rouse him? The scepter will not depart from Judah, nor the ruler’s staff from between his feet, until he comes to whom it belongs and the obedience of the nations is his.” Notice the part that says that the scepter will not depart from Judah? Well, that’s the reference to the eventual coming of the Messiah through the line of Judah – the eternal reign of Christ. It’s easy to see how we can refer to Christ as the “lion of Judah.”
In the book of Revelation, there is another reference to the lion of Judah. We are told that He could open the seals on the scroll. In Rev. 5:5, we are told, “Then one of the elders said to me, “Do not weep! See, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has triumphed. He is able to open the scroll and its seven seals.” The circle is complete. The lion roars.
My encouragement this evening is that you will think of Jesus as as first and the last, the beginning and the end. He was there when the first things were created and will rule for all eternity. My prayer is that you will declare the Lion of Judah as your Lord and Savior. Have a great day in the Lord, grace and peace…