In the last book of the Bible, Revelation, Jesus is given a very specific title—the Lamb of God. While there are a variety of names, descriptions, and titles given to Jesus in this book, “The Lamb” is by far the most frequent (it is used 29 times). This emphasis means we should learn to see Jesus as The Lamb of God. What does it mean for Jesus to be “The Lamb of God”? Why is it important for us to see Him as The Lamb? Funny you should ask.
He died for our sins.
The image of Jesus as a Lamb was not created when Jesus arrived on Earth or in the story of the book of Revelation. God called for the death of animals, often lambs, throughout Bible history from the time of Abel, Abraham, the Exodus Passover, and the Old Covenant sacrificial atonement system. Sacrifices allowed for a peaceful relationship between people and God. This demand for sacrifices culminated with Jesus, the true Lamb of God who came to die to take away the sin of the world (John 1:29; Revelation 5:6-14). When we see Jesus as The Lamb it reminds us of the awful price that had to be paid in order for us to be saved from sin (1 Peter 1:19). You have access to a life and a hope and forgiveness and peace because of The Lamb.
He shepherds us through life.
Revelation is written to Christians who were struggling to make it through life (so, Christians). How do I navigate temptation? How do I overcome discouragement? How can I learn to do better after massive failure? The answer to all these questions is The Lamb. Revelation 7:15-17 claims that those who follow The Lamb are given shelter from the storms of life, they are fed, they are led, they drink from springs of living water, and God wipes every tear from their eyes. How can all of these wonderful things be? Because “the Lamb … will be their shepherd” (Revelation 7:17). If you are trying to make it in life without the guidance, discipline, and protection of The Lamb then you will be lost. But if The Lamb is your Shepherd then you will dwell in the beauty of God forever.
He defeats evil.
His sacrificial death and shepherding influence are available to us because The Lamb is powerful. Repeatedly in the book of Revelation God makes the shocking and almost ironic claim that The Lamb uses His power to execute wrath upon evil (6:16, 15:3), defeat Satan and his allies (12:11, 14:10, 17:14, 19:7), and consequently enable those who love God to overcome no matter what (12:11; 17:14). Those who follow The Lamb will stand (14:1-5) while all His enemies will fall.
He loves His Bride.
He was slain for us. He guides and protects us. He fights against evil for us. Why would someone devote himself in such radical sacrifice? The Lamb does not live and work and fight for His own satisfaction or merely due to some sort of heartless, divine obligation. He has done and continues to do all these things because He loves His Bride. The climax of the Revelation (and actually of the entire Bible story) is the marriage between Jesus The Lamb with His Bride.
Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory!
For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready.
Fine linen, bright and clean, was given her to wear.” (19:7-8)
He said to me: “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the thirsty I will give water without cost from the spring of the water of life. 7 Those who are victorious will inherit all this, and I will be their God and they will be my children. … One of the seven angels who had the seven bowls full of the seven last plagues came and said to me, “Come, I will show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb.” (Revelation 21:6-9)
And do you know who that Bride is? It is all those who love God, who have turned away from themselves and the world and their sin, who have given themselves in complete fidelity to The Lamb (Ephesians 5:25-33). In other words, the Bride could be you. The Lamb did all of this so that you (along with billions of others) and He could enjoy the peace and joy and fulfillment of a ‘marriage’ that begins now and runs through forever.
The Lamb has given up His life for you. Will you give yourself to Him?