The names of Jesus in the book of Revelation – Part 29
The sacrificial significance of the term is much more important than the mere comparison of the character of our Lord with meekness and gentleness, as some have suggested.While uses of the word “lamb” are fairly sparse in the rest of the NT, in the book of Revelation the references to the Lamb take centre stage. The term occurs 27 times, but the word used by the Apostle John differs from the one spoken by the Baptist. The amnos of John 1:29 becomes the arnion in Revelation, a diminutive form suggestive of affection. Arnion is also the word used by the Lord in His rebuke and forgiveness of Peter (John 21: 15J. While the arnion in Revelation is the Lamb of sacrifice (5:6-10; 12:11), He also is the one who will come in wrath and judgment (6:16-17).
The relation between John 1:29 and Isa. 53 has been the subject of significant discussion. In verse 10 Isaiah’s “suffering one” “would render Himself as a guilt offering,” and in verse 4 “our griefs He Himself bore.” The prophet’s word for “bearing” (in the Septuagint [LXX], pherein) involves the conception of a sin offering possessing justifying power, and the idea of “taking away” is in view. John, however, did not use the LXX word pherein but airein when he said Christ will “take away” the sin of the world. Some scholars have maintained that John’s term simply means “put away,” or “support,” or “endure.” But this surely misses the meaning of the associated term “lamb,” which John could not have employed without some reference to its sacrificial and therefore substitutionary force.
Between the two references, we find in Christ the fulfillment of the promise that God would provide a sacrifice who would both bear the curse of sin and provide salvation for the world. While Isaiah may not have had a complete dogmatic conception of the full relation of the death of Christ to the salvation of the world at large, at the very least the idea of bearing the curse of sin was in Isaiah’s mind.
(20) “Shepherd” (Rev 7:17)
“For the Lamb who is in the midst of the throne will shepherd them and lead them to living fountains of waters. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.” (Rev 7:17)
Shepherd Keeper of sheep.
Shepherd. A widely used metaphor for kings in the ancient Near East, and also in Israel (see 78:70-72; 2 Sam 5:2; Isa 44:28; Jer 3:15; 23:1-4; Mic 5:4; see also Jer 2:8). For the Lord as the shepherd of Israel see 28:9; 79:13; 80:1; 95:7; 100:3; Gen 48:15; Isa 40:11; Jer 17:16; 31:10; 50:19; Ezek 34:11-16. Here David the king acknowledges that the Lord is his Shepherd-king. For Jesus as the shepherd of his people see Jn 10:11,14; Heb 13:20; 1 Pet 5:4; Rev 7:17.
Some NT references used a shepherd and the sheep to illustrate Christ’s relationship to His followers who referred to Him as ‘our Lord Jesus—the great Shepherd of the sheep” (Heb 13:20). Jesus spoke of Himself as “the good shepherd” who knew His sheep and would lay down His life for them (John 10:7-18). Jesus commissioned Peter to feed His sheep (John 21). Paul likened the church and its leaders to a flock with shepherds (Acts 20:28). The Latin word transliterated “pastor” means shepherd.
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