Jesus Revealed: Part 2

Jesus is the world’s preeminent person. The greatest event in human history was the coming of Jesus into this world. The greatest words ever spoken were his words. The greatest deeds ever done were accomplished by his hands. The greatest gift ever offered was his blood at Calvary. Jesus stands alone in all of history—the single most significant person who ever lived.

Yet countless people across the globe have no idea who Jesus really is. Mormons believe Jesus to be the spirit-brother of Lucifer. Jehovah’s Witnesses teach that he’s the Archangel Michael. Muslims claim that he was a prophet of Allah, but certainly not the Son of God. There are a lot of different interpretations of Jesus out there. A cartoon version of Jesus has made several appearances on long-running TV shows like The Simpsons and South Park. Celebrities like Ashton Kutcher, Ben Affleck, and Brad Pitt have all been spotted wearing “Jesus is my homeboy” t-shirts. In the movie Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby, comedian Will Ferrell leads his family in prayer to an “8-pound, 6-ounce, newborn infant Jesus” wearing “golden fleece diapers” and watching developmental video about shapes and colors. Apparently, he liked the Christmas Jesus best. There was even a bizarre Canadian kung-fu/comedy/horror/musical about the second coming, called Jesus Christ Vampire Hunter, which pairs Jesus with Mexican Wrestling hero El Santos to battle an army of vampires!

The point is—how we see Jesus defines our relationship with him. In his book, The Jesus You Can’t Ignore, John MacArthur writes, “What you think of Jesus will thoroughly color how you think about everything else… Our view of Jesus affects our view of God, the world, ourselves, and every one of our decisions.”

So who is Jesus really? How should we see him?

Last Sunday, we peered into the first chapter of Revelation, in which John sees a vision of Jesus in heaven and Jesus reveals himself to be ageless, alive, and authoritative. The second vision John has of Jesus in heaven in found in Revelation 5:


Then I saw in the right hand of him who sat on the throne a scroll with writing on both sides and sealed with seven seals. And I saw a mighty angel proclaiming in a loud voice, “Who is worthy to break the seals and open the scroll?” But no one in heaven or on earth or under the earth could open the scroll or even look inside it. I wept and wept because no one was found who was worthy to open the scroll or look inside. 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.”

Then I saw a Lamb, looking as if it had been slain, standing in the center before the throne, encircled by the four living creatures and the elders. The Lamb had seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth. He went and took the scroll from the right hand of him who sat on the throne. And when he had taken it, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb. Each one had a harp and they were holding golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of God’s people. And they sang a new song, saying:

“You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, because you were slain,     and with your blood you purchased for God members of every tribe and language and people and nation. You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God, and they will reign on the earth.”

Then I looked and heard the voice of many angels, numbering thousands upon thousands, and ten thousand times ten thousand. They encircled the throne and the living creatures and the elders. In a loud voice they were saying:

“Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and praise!” Then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all that is in them, saying:

“To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and honor and glory and power, for ever and ever!” The four living creatures said, “Amen,” and the elders fell down and worshiped. (Revelation 5:1-14 TNIV)



The scroll with the seven seals that John sees in the beginning of the chapter represents a series of events in the history of the church that would soon unfold, and Jesus was the only one worthy to set those events in motion. And as Jesus makes his appearance here, we see three different depiction or images that reveal who Jesus is.


First, Jesus is the Lion—the Lion of Judah, to be specific. As Jesus takes center stage, one of the twenty-four elders announces, “Behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah” (Revelation 5:5 NKJV). A lion is a powerful and imposing animal.

I heard of a missionary that was out wandering the African plains when he encountered a lion. The missionary was frozen with fear. He knew he couldn’t outrun the beast, so he fell to his knees and prayed, “Lord, please help me! Make this lion a Christian!” Suddenly, the lion bowed his head and said, “Lord, I thank thee for the meal that I am about to receive!”

This imagery of a ferocious lion actually comes from deep within the Old Testament when Israel had abandoned God and went running after the gods of Assyria. God told the prophet Hosea, “I’ll become a fierce lion attacking Israel and Judah. I’ll snatch and carry off what I want, and no one can stop me” (Hosea 5:14 CEV).

These days, Jesus is often portrayed as a pacifist, a philanthropist, or a doting professor. He strikes a plastic—and sometimes pathetic—pose in the minds of many. And some people prefer the meek and mild Jesus who heals the sick, calms fears, and speaks of peace and goodwill. But those things only represent a portion of who Jesus is.

Yes, Jesus tenderly held little children in his arms and comforted grief-stricken parents, but he also boldly confronted the Pharisees and Sadducees, calling them a “brood of vipers” right to their faces. He was hostile toward hypocrisy. He issued orders to the wind and the waves. On two occasions, he violently turned over temple tables and chased sticky-fingered money-changes with the same type of whip that would later be used to flog Jesus himself. This was no mild-mannered Messiah.

He was Lion of Judah. And, the Bible promises that when he comes again, we’ll see just how fierce he can be. Jesus has more power than we could ever comprehend at his command, and yet, he won his great battle not a lion, but as a lamb.


First, Jesus is called the Lion, but furthermore, Jesus is revealed to be the Lamb of God. John is told to look at Jesus, the Lion. But when he turns, he sees Jesus, the Lamb. He writes, “Then I saw a Lamb that looked as if it had been slaughtered” (Revelation 5:6 NLT). What a surprise it must have been for John to look for this fierce lion who would rip the seals with his powerful claws, only to see a small wounded lamb.

But you see, in the Old Testament, lambs were sacrificed to atone for sin. Each year, on the Day of Atonement, or Yum Kippur, the high-priest would select a spotless innocent lamb and take it into the Holiest Place of the Temple, slaughtering it and shedding its blood to purify the people of Israel from their sins, making them right with God. These and other similar sacrifices were offered over and over, day after day, because they were insufficient to bring about true atonement.

But those sacrificial lambs foreshadowed the coming of Jesus. John the Baptist was the first to make the connection. Pointing toward Jesus, he announced, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29 NIV). That’s precisely what the inhabitants of heaven were singing about in Revelation 5: “You are worthy… because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased for God persons from every tribe and language and people and nation” (Revelation 5:9 NIV).

In his book, Eternity in Their Hearts, Don Richardson writes about the difficulty missionaries had in communicating the good news of Jesus Christ to the Chinese people. But then, one missionary discovered a breakthrough.  He was studying a particular symbol in the Chinese language, the one which means righteousness, and he noticed that the symbol consisted of two parts. The upper part was the Chinese symbol for a lamb. Directly under it was the first person pronoun, I or me. Suddenly, the missionary discerned an amazingly well-coded message hidden within the ideograph: “I under the lamb is righteousness!” This amazed the Chinese people. They never noticed it, but once the missionary pointed this out, they saw it clearly. And they finally saw Jesus for who is—the Son of God became the Lamb of God, the cross became the altar, and “we have been made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all” (Hebrews 10:10 NIV). Unlike the animal sacrifices of the Old Testament, the blood of Jesus doesn’t cover your sins, conceal your sins, postpone your sins, or diminish your sins. It takes away your sin once and for all.


So, Jesus is both the Lion and the Lamb, and—finally—Jesus is the Lord. In Revelation 5, he is called, “the heir to David’s throne… the one sitting on the throne” (Revelation 5:5,13 NLT). If that wasn’t clear enough, toward the end of Revelation, the Bible says, “On his robe at his thigh was written this title: King of all kings and Lord of all lords” (Revelation 19:16 NLT). In fact, the phrase “the Lord Jesus” or “our Lord Jesus” appears in the New Testament (NIV) over 100 times.

If Jesus is Lord that means he’s the boss. He calls the shots and he has the authority. What he says goes. He’s the King—not just of this planet, but of the entire universe. He is the ruler of everything and the leader of our lives.

Sometimes, after an election, if the guy they voted for didn’t win, I’ll hear people say things like, “Well, he’s not my president.” The truth is, though, he is our president—regardless of who you voted for or whether or not you like it.

It’s the same with Jesus.

Countless millions throughout the world may live as if Christ is not Lord, but that does not change reality. Jesus is the King of all Kings and the Lord of all Lords. He’s King over atheist. He’s King over the good. He’s King over the bad. Whether or not you acknowledge his authority and reign over you, Jesus is your king! You do not make Jesus Lord of your life, as if you have the power or authority to do so. You simply acknowledge it. He already reigns supreme. And there will come a day when every human being on the face of the planet will acknowledge Christ’s lordship.

The Bible says that when Christ comes “every knee will bow to the name of Jesus—everyone in heaven, on earth, and under the earth. And everyone will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord” (Philippians 2:10-11 NCV).

The best thing we can do is kneel before him and accept his lordship over our lives sooner, rather than later. That means obeying his commands and living life his way. It means accepting him as the leader of our lives and giving him the honor and glory and praise that he deserves.




Jesus—the Lion of Judah, the Lamb of God, and the Lord of all lords. He is all of these things and so much more.  Jesus is the most famous person in all of history. More songs have been sung to him, artwork created of him, and books written about him than anyone who has ever lived. And, like I said before, how we see Jesus colors our view of God, the world, ourselves and everything else.

Next week, we’ll glimpse Revelation’s final vision of Jesus and see what else it reveals about him. In the meantime, I’d like to invite you to get to know him personally. If you haven’t accepted Jesus as the Lord of your life or been washed in the blood of the Lamb, now is the time to do it. He’s blood tells the story of what God did to win your heart.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.