Have you ever had someone describe another person to you, and when you finally met that person, he or she was totally different than what you expected?
The Apostle John had an experience like this that he describes in Revelation 5. In verse 5, one of the elders from around the throne of God describes the exalted Jesus Christ as “the Lion of Judah,” indicating that Christ is about to execute fierce judgment against all wicked doers.
Then John looks up and sees Jesus in the middle of God’s throne. But what he sees is not a Lion. John says in Revelation 5: 6,
“And I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of the throne…stood a Lamb as it had been slain.”
John was looking for a Lion, and instead, he saw a lamb—THE LAMB OF GOD.
Why was there such a difference between the elder’s description and what John saw in Jesus Christ?
What the elder was describing was Christ as the Lion, a fierce and faithful judge worthy to execute judgment upon the world and punish sinners. And that is exactly what is about to happen in chapter 6.
But John, although a sinner, was redeemed and forgiven through faith. So, when he looked at Christ, he did not find a judge but saw the Lamb who had paid the price for his sins.
It is the same for all those who have submitted to Christ in faith. What will you find when you finally see Christ face to face: the Lion or the Lamb?