A Lion Who Guards and One Who Devours

Friday Gleanings.009

But one of the twenty-four elders said to me, “Stop weeping! Look, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the heir to David’s throne, has won the victory. He is worthy to open the scroll and its seven seals.” (Revelation 5:5 NLT)

When I was four, my grandparents moved to New York City from Puerto Rico.  One of the first apartments they lived in had stone lions flanking the entrance.  The first time I went to visit, I did not want to go in because I was afraid of the lions.  Finally, I was told to close my eyes, and with my head buried in my father’s shoulder, I let myself be taken in without being attacked by the ferocious beasts of my imagination.

The next time I came to visit, my uncle explained to me that one of the lions was mean, but the other one was strong and kind and had more power than the mean lion.  He said they fought to see which one was going to be the boss.  The kind lion won, so now the mean lion had to obey the nice lion.  Then he let me get close to the kind lion and pat its head.

After several more visits, I stopped being afraid.  I became so comfortable with the kind lion that my brothers and I would sit on it and pretend he was our friend.  Somewhere in the many family photo albums there is a picture of me and my brother siting on the kind lion.  In the picture, we are smiling, completely at ease and at rest.

In the Scriptures, there are two lions.  One of them is Satan.  We are told: “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.” (1 Peter 5:8 NKJV) The other Lion is our Lord Jesus Christ, who is the Lion of the tribe of Judah. He is kind and compassionate and is also the Lamb of God, who was slain for our transgressions.  He is also strong and mighty; He is the only one able to save us.

When Jesus speaks to his disciples about his death, he says:“But the time is coming—indeed it’s here now—when you will be scattered, each one going his own way, leaving me alone. Yet I am not alone because the Father is with me.  I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” (John 16:32-33 NLT)  Also, as he spoke of his impending sacrifice on the cross for our sins, Jesus said: “Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out.” (John 12:31 ASV)  Satan is the prince of this world, he is the roaring lion overcome by the Lion of the Tribe of Judah.

In the end, there will be a final battle. Jesus will defeat Satan and his angels. In Revelation 12:10, John tells us:Then I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, “Now salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren, who accused them before our God day and night, has been cast down.” (NKJV)

Dearest Heavenly Father,

You have made provision for us.  You have given us a place of safety under the protection of a mighty King, your Son Jesus.  We take refuge in Him and rest on His promises till He comes again in glory.

Amen

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