by Kristen C. Strocchia
“Then I saw a lamb looking as if it had been slain, standing at the center of the throne, encircled by the four living creatures and the elders. The lamb had seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth. He went and took the scroll from the right hand of Him who sat on the throne.” Revelation 5:6-7
Here John turns and sees a lamb, all bloodied and gaping gashes, but remember that the elders just instructed him to see a triumphant lion. Jesus is both the lion [Revelation 5:5] and the lamb that was slain–the perfect sacrifice for the sins of all humankind [Isaiah 53:7; John 1:29].
It is His sacrificial form that we see seated on the throne and encircled by the heavenly creatures and elders. But we also see His omnipotence and omniscience in the seven horns and eyes. Throughout the Bible, seven is the number of completion or perfection and a horn symbolized strength in ancient Judaism. So seven horns showed full or perfect power. Moreover, eyes being vision, show that Jesus is all-seeing and therefore all-knowing.
The text refers to these eyes as the seven spirits of God which were represented earlier by the fiery lampstands burning before the throne [Revelation 4:5]. Not much is known or written about these seven Spirits, which can also be translated as sevenfold Spirit, except that here we see that they are sent by God throughout the earth.
But Jesus–the lion of Judah, slain as the perfect, unblemished lamb for our sins–is able to take the sealed scroll from God’s right hand, a hand that symbolizes favor. Jesus–God’s Son–has His Father’s favor and it is to our benefit that He stands before God on our behalf. Though the judgment to be revealed in the scroll will be bitter, the result is double-edged–judgment for those who did not believe, and preparing the new heaven and new earth for those who did.
Do you know Jesus as the powerful lion of Judah in your life? Do you know Him as the sinless sacrifice for your sins? By which side of the double-edged sword will your life be cut–judgment or preparation?