Read: Revelation 7:9-17
For the Lamb in the midst of the throne will be their shepherd. (v. 17)
The central figure in God’s story of salvation is a lamb. In Exodus, when God caused death to pass over Israel, the sign of salvation was the blood of a lamb. In Leviticus, when God’s people sinned unintentionally, the atoning sacrifice was a lamb. In Isaiah, when God promised one who would save humanity from sin, this one was portrayed as an innocent victim—a sacrificial lamb.
In Revelation, when the apostle John witnessed the resolution of human history, he saw the one who would finally defeat the powers of sin, death, and hell. The victor ascended the throne over heaven and earth, only to be revealed as “a Lamb, looking as if it had been slain” (Revelation 5:6 NIV).
Somehow, God’s plan to overcome the violence and oppression that enslave humanity was not a greater degree of violence and oppression but gentleness and humility. God’s way to ascend to the place of very highest power and influence was not to take it by force but to give it up.
The Lamb who was slain is also a shepherd. He leads us into a life of vulnerability and self-sacrifice. But we follow him because he laid down His life for us. We trust him because he forged this path from death to life. We devote ourselves to him because he is worthy. And in the end, he will “guide [us] to springs of living water, and . . . wipe away every tear from [our] eyes” (Revelation 7:17). —Ben Van Arragon
As you pray, praise the Lamb who leads us into life.
About the Author
Ben Van Arragon is a pastor, husband, and father of two teenage daughters. He has served the First Christian Reformed Church of Detroit since 2008. He writes and produces video teaching on the Bible and Reformed creeds and confessions. His writing for Words of Hope includes series on Jeremiah, Exodus, and Work and Rest.