“The Lion Shall Lay Down by the Lamb”
In 1937, Thomas A Dorsey wrote the song, “Peace in the Valley.” It didn’t become a “hit” until 1951 when Red Foley sang it. Since that time many artists have recorded it, the most famous among which was Elvis in 1957. The song is often sung at funerals due to the comforting words offered regarding peace that allegedly waits for the deceased after death. In the song’s third stanza, there is a line about the lion laying down with the lamb, and many presume this line comes from the Bible, but it doesn’t. There is some similar imagery in the Bible, however, in Isaiah 11:6, the prophet writes, “The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb,The leopard shall lie down with the young goat,The calf and the young lion and the fatling together;And a little child shall lead them.” Also, in Isaiah 65:25, he writes, “’The wolf and the lamb shall feed together, The lion shall eat straw like the ox, And dust shall be the serpent’s food. They shall not hurt nor destroy in all My holy mountain,’ Says the Lord.”
Are these verses discussing heaven? The premillennialist believes that they are discussing the time of the thousand-year reign of Christ on earth. Others believe that this is discussing heaven. However, if we read the context of these passages, we will see that the verses are talking about the coming of the Messiah and His work to establish His church. In Isaiah 11:10: “And in that day there shall be a Root of Jesse,Who shall stand as a banner to the people;For the Gentiles shall seek Him,And His resting place shall be glorious.” Where do Gentiles seek the Messiah? In the church of Christ (Romans 1:16; 16:16).