An Alphabetical Analysis
Volume 8 - Prophetic Truth - Page 292 of 304
e  The Shepherd
the Stone.
27 Benjamin
Judah is the tribe whose latter day prophecy links it with the
prevailing Lion, and with the sceptre, lawgiver and Shiloh.  The One who had
prevailed to open the scroll was, moreover, 'The root of David'.  This title,
taken together with that of Revelation 22:16, 'I am the root and the
offspring of David' is often explained, by saying that Christ was not only
the son of David (the offspring), but also as the root whence David sprang.
We rejoice to know that He who was David's son was also David's Lord, but in
what special way David sprang from Christ we fail to see in Scripture;
neither is there any need for such an idea.  The 'root' of David seems to be
an allusion, if not a direct reference back to Isaiah 11:1, 'And there shall
come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his
roots'; the stem really means the stump of a tree after it has been cut down,
and the figure exactly fits the apparent destruction of the royal line of
David in our Lord's day.  Christ is the Branch that grows out of his roots,
for, in verse 10, the prophet continues, 'And in that day there shall be a
root of Jesse ... to it shall the Gentiles seek'.  If the title 'the root of
David' denotes the source from whence David sprang, and not the same as the
offspring of David, then 'the root of Jesse' indicates the same.  All are
agreed, however, that 'the root of Jesse' is but another way of speaking of
Him Who should 'grow out of his roots'.  Malachi 4:1 shows that 'root' as
well as 'branch' is used to indicate posterity.  The prophecy of the
Apocalypse is far more concerned to show the fulfilment of the promise
concerning the Seed of David, than it is to prove the deity of Christ.
The Lord is seen as the great King, prevailing as the Lion of Judah,
concerning Whom alone a sceptre is mentioned, and as the root of David, Who,
being raised from the dead, sits on David's throne.
One further and all -important truth is revealed in the vision
concerning this kingly overcomer.  The Lion of Judah and the root of David is
the Lamb of God.  When He first came amongst men as the sent One of God, He
came not as a Lion, but was pointed out as the 'Lamb of God which taketh away
the sin of the world'.  When John beholds Him in His risen glory, he still
sees Him not as a Lion, but as the Lamb; when the day of His wrath comes, and
strikes terror in the breast of all, we read of the wrath of the Lamb, not
the Lion; when the marriage of heaven's King is announced, it is the marriage
of the Lamb, not of the Lion.  More pointedly, perhaps, is Revelation 6:1,
where it is the Lamb Who opens the seals, although the elder said it was the
Lion that he saw.  We are not to understand that He Who once was the Lamb has
now become the Lion.  No, the Lamb it is that is seen right through the
prophecy, the Lion never.  Christ as the Lamb fulfils all the prophecies that
speak of Him as Lion and King, for the Lamb bears the marks of sacrifice,
'standing as having been slain'.  Without the redemption concerning which the
slain Lamb speaks, the throne of David would remain vacant, and the Lion of
Judah would never be known.  Heaven is about to burst forth in a new song,
and it is to the Lamb they sing, and of His redemption, not to the Lion and
of His strength.
Throughout the Scriptures there runs the teaching that is summed up in
this vision of the enthroned Lamb.  Man by nature would give the battle to
the strong.  God has throughout glorified humility and meekness, everything
in fact that goes with a lamblike character.  Those who suffer, overcome;