In John’s vision the conquering Lion of JudahJudah was the name of Jacob's fourth son and one of the 12 tribes. More is equated to a slaughtered Lamb. This Lamb is the only one worthy to open a sealed scroll given by God.
John hears a heavenly elder speak about the Lion of Judah, an expression that recalls God’s promise to send a powerful king from David’s line, who would build the kingdom of GodThe kingdom (reign) of God is a central theme of Jesus' teaching and parables. According to Jesus this reign of God is a present reality and at the same time is yet to come. When Christians pray the Lord's Prayer, they ask that God's kingdom... More (Genesis 49:9-10). When John turns to see the Lion, however, he sees a Lamb, standing as if it had been slaughtered. The image of the slaughtered Lamb recalls the PassoverPassover commemorates the deliverance of the Hebrew people from Egypt as described in the book of Exodus. It is celebrated with worship and a meal on the fourteenth day of the month called Nisan, which is the first month of the Jewish year. The time... More, when the blood of lambs protected people from the power of the destroyer (Exodus 12:1-13). It also recalls how God’s servant in the book of IsaiahIsaiah, son of Amoz, who prophesied in Jerusalem, is included among the prophets of the eighth century B.C.E. (along with Amos, Hosea, and Micah)--preachers who boldly proclaimed God's word of judgment against the economic, social, and religious disorders of their time. More was like a lamb that bore human sin (Isaiah 53:6-7). God keeps the promise concerning the Lion by sending the Lamb, for it is through Christ’s sacrificeSacrifice is commonly understood as the practice of offering or giving up something as a sign of worship, commitment, or obedience. In the Old Testament grain, wine, or animals are used as sacrifice. In some New Testament writings Jesus' death on the cross as the... More that the power of God is unleashed. The heavenly company gives praise because the blood of the Lamb builds God’s kingdom by ransoming people of every tribe and nation for lives of service to God.