There’s this song that we sing in church and it’s awesome, about a lion.
And there’s this movie I like to watch and book I like to read where a lion is basically a metaphor for God, and how he is a hellapowerful ferocious protector of those that know him.
And lions are cool and everyone freaking loves a good lion. I know I do.
And our God is a lion, the Lion of Judah. He’s roaring with power, and fighting our battles.
But check this: He’s also a lamb. A lamb that was slain for the sins of the world. His blood breaks the chains.
(And now you’ll be humming Big Daddy Weave songs all day. You’re welcome.)
Revelations 5:5-5:6 says something to the effect of ” …’Hey don’t worry! Here comes the Lion of Judah right now! He’s just conquered all the things!’ And I looked and I saw a lamb that looked like it’d just been slaughtered…”
Jesus conquered evil and death not as a roaring lion, but as a slaughtered lamb. A meek and bloody baby sheep. I can’t stop thinking about this.
We want lions as our mascots.
We expect the biggest and baddest to dominate in battle, always.
We want the biggest claws, the sharpest teeth. We horde the most weapons and gather the most supplies.
We think with these things, we will beat the perceived bad guys. We’ll win the war on terror, and the war on Christmas, and turn hearts to God in the process.
But Jesus did win.
Not by force and military might. Not by political alignment with a any certain group. Not by throwing tantrums about what color cup his overpriced coffee came in.
Jesus conquered death itself as the most submissive, helpless animal in the world.
With sacrifice, and a unbending commitment to peace. And unconditionally unconditional love. With a completely unfathomable willingness to serve folks who didn’t deserve it. With an utter refusal to bend to the popular (and violent) powers that be. And with a dedication to teaching God’s truth everywhere He went.
There was no other way to win that war.
And can we talk about how He didn’t just pardon His enemies? We get squared away with people who have wronged us with a slight nod of our head and a “We’re good,” only after they’ve been apologetic and repentant.
But Jesus said, “I know you don’t care and you’re not even sorry and you’re gonna keep hurting me, but I’m gonna willingly die a horrible humiliating and painful public death for you, how bow dah?
“And then, once that’s done, and I’ve come back to life, cause, you know–I’m God–and you turn your heart to me, I want you, former enemy, to come over; sit at my table and eat my food. Heck, just live in my house and I’ll give you my inheritance. Because, love, peace, and forgiveness, amirite?”
Jesus may or may not have been a little hippyish.
It makes no dadgum sense even to the people that believe it with all their hearts. It’s illogical and counterintuitiv.
But that’s our Jesus; He is the Lion and the Lamb.
And every knee will bow before Him.