Letter from a Reader
There is an old saying that March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb. Well as I write this letter, March is certainly being lion-like with these dreadful winds and rain; I hope that when you are reading it we are well into the lamb phase.
All this made me think about the names we have for God and Jesus, or perhaps they are more akin to nicknames if that doesn’t sound irreverent. In the Bible there are references to God as a lion, in Genesis 49 it says that Judah is a lion's whelp when referring to their relationship with God, and in Revelation 5 there is a verse that says “the lion from Judah’s tribe . . . has won the victory”. So God is seen as a lion, strong and fearless, able to overcome all who oppose Him, and he is also seen as a lamb.
The image of a lamb is one we are perhaps more familiar with, but the Lamb of God, Jesus, is no fluffy little creature gambolling in the fields; he is a sacrificial lamb, covered in blood. That’s not such a pretty picture is it? The popular image of gentle Jesus meek and mild, although true in one way is far too limiting. Jesus was not seen as a weak gentle do-gooder whilst he was here on earth; he was seen as a trouble maker, someone who upset the status quo. He was hounded by the authorities and eventually suffered a cruel very painful death. A death he endured for our sake, he even felt that God, his Father, had abandoned Him; and yet he was victorious in the end and rose from the dead so that we could be called his brothers and sisters.
During Lent we have been examining what it means to be “church” in our weekly Lent group. The core of “Church” is the people who call themselves Christian, whoever and where-ever they may be. Each of us is needed to make the Church function, but without Jesus at the root of it we are nothing. He is the Lion who we can rely on when we are going through hard times and he is the Lamb who sacrificed everything so that we can share in the Kingdom of God.
As we celebrate Easter let us take time to reflect on all that our Lord has done for us and live as he commanded us, with love for one another. Alleluia!