What is the Most Powerful Creature of All Time?
The answer will surprise you.
You’ve probably already started to think of several viable candidates like a wolf, a lion, a Kodiak bear or an elephant. Perhaps you’ve considered creatures of the sea like the great white shark or the orca or maybe you’ve leaned toward prehistoric creatures like the saber-toothed cat, the woolly mammoth or the T-Rex. Push that to the back of your mind for a moment while we wander off track for a few minutes. I promise that I’ll return to the question in a moment, but first let me tell you a quick story.
When I was in college, my older brother and I went to the same university in Texas and were only a couple of years apart, so he would occasionally come to visit myself and some of his other friends that lived in the same dorm as I did. On one occasion, he had gotten in a rather heated discussion with another person who was in the common room of the dorm and he had run out of patience and decided to leave. The moment he walked out the door, the guy he’d been having the discussion with began to say some derogatory things about him. What he didn’t realize was that I was standing right behind him when he said them.
Chewing Nails and Spitting Buck Shot.
Those of you that know my brothers understand that either one of them can take care of themselves, those of you that don’t, will just have to take my word for it. 99.9 % of the time, I am easy going, but if you say or do anything against one of my brothers, I’m ready to chew nails and spit buck shot as this poor guy soon discovered. He backed down pretty quickly and retreated from me. When things calmed down, he later apologized and told me that he’d been afraid that I was going to rip his throat out. I told him that I was about to. He said he wished he had a brother like that.
Jesus Christ is far from weak.
Let’s assume for a moment that you and I had the power of God and were able to do whatever we commanded. If you and I were led into the Sanhedrin and put on trial before the Jewish leaders of the day, we might have used our superior knowledge of the scriptures and profound wisdom to argue our innocence and win our case. That’s not what Jesus did. If you had been led into that courtyard where the Roman soldiers pressed a crown of thorns on your head and then proceeded to mock you as they whipped you, you, having the power of God, might have snapped your fingers and they’d have all fallen away from you dead. If I had been dragging that cross up the hill with crowds of people on both sides of me calling out insults, I might have spoken a word and watched them all fall over dead. Even while hanging on the cross, if I had heard the challenge, “if you’re really the son of God, come down off the cross and we’ll worship you,” I would have hopped down and said, “how do you like them apples?” But Jesus didn’t do any of those things.
Jesus was singularly resolute in carrying out one purpose.
Jesus was singularly focused on His mission. Beyond His teachings, beyond His healing, beyond all of His great miracles and prophesies and fulfillment of prophesies, He was resolutely focused on giving His life to defeat sin and death. You see, Jesus didn’t use His power the way that you and I would have, because He had a much larger goal in mind. That goal was to defeat sin and death so that He could transform the lives of those who would be joint heirs with Him in the coming kingdom. Jesus gritted His teeth and held back the power of God because He was focused on transforming YOUR life. But He wasn’t and isn’t weak at all. In the next several weeks we’ll explore just how strong He really is. But first, we need to return to the question that I posed.
What is the most powerful creature of all time?
By now, you probably have formed your best answer. Well, I’ll bet that you didn’t come up with the one that I’m about to give you. In fact, if I gave you the answer right away, you’d think I had completely lost my marbles, so let me help support my answer with a few passages of scripture from the 5th chapter of Revelations.
John is standing before the throne of God in his vision and he is reporting what he sees there:
“And I saw in the right hand of Him who sat on the throne a scroll written inside and on the back, sealed with seven seals. Then I saw a strong angel proclaiming with a loud voice, ‘Who is worthy to open the scroll and to loose its seals?’ And no one in heaven or on the earth or under the earth was able to open the scroll, or to look at it.” – Revelation 5:1-3.
Understand that in John’s day, a scroll like John is describing was a contract of the greatest importance, thus, the reason for sealing it seven times. Contracts of this nature were usually wills or deeds. So, from what we understand of history, the image that John is describing for us is God holding out a will or a deed to pass along to whomever was worthy to open it. Let’s move forward a few verses.
Who is worthy?
“And I looked, and behold, in the midst of the throne and of the four living creatures, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as though it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent out into all the earth. Then He came and took the scroll out of the right hand of Him who sat on the throne.” – Revelation 5:6 & 7
Are you ready to change your answer yet? It was sort of a trick question to begin with, but, as you might now understand, The Lamb is the most powerful creature of all time, though, technically, He’s not really a creature, but the Son of the Living God.
The Lamb of God is the most powerful creature of all time.
Friends, it is this same Lamb of God who will take that scroll and claim the world as His kingdom. That same Lamb of God who is also referred to as the Lion of Judah who will come riding on a white horse with a sword to reclaim His inheritance. This same Jesus Christ who was mocked, beaten and crucified has fulfilled that singular purpose for which He focused Himself and has defeated sin and death. Because He held back His power and did not use it to destroy those around Him, He made it possible for His Holy Spirit to come. When His Holy Spirit came, He came with the power to transform our lives and to make us new creations; even heirs along with Him in His coming kingdom. Folks, that is real power.
Sadly, however, we don’t really get it. We don’t really hold onto that power and see it move through our lives transforming us with the same power that is able to overcome not only sin and death, but to overcome and conquer the entire world. We wander about in weakness, fear, confusion and uncertainty, because we have a tendency to want to follow along behind the politically correct and weak Jesus that the world places before us. We “have a form of godliness, but we deny the power,” as Paul tells Timothy in 2 Timothy 3:5. We fail to see the miracle of our rebirth in Christ and we fail to understand that we are already conquerors.