2021 Ox – the Chinese Lunar Year of the Ox 农历牛年
Susan and I wish all at New Life Restoration Centre churches Xin Nian Kuai Le 新年快乐and Wan Shi Ru Yi 万事如意; Happy Chinese New Year, and we pray the Lord to bless the works of your hands.
While many are still affected by the pandemic world-wide, as believers in the Lord we will find faith at every opportunity. There is hope and a future for God’s people (Jer 29:11). In this Lunar New Year, the Chinese call this the year of the ox. The Bible has something to say about the ox.
There are four faces representing the four domains of God’s rule: man represents humanity; the lion represents the king of the animal kingdom; the ox represents the strongest of domestic animals; and the eagle represents vitality and renewing of strength. Bible students made correlations of the four faces (Ezek 1:10, 10:14; Rev 4:7) to the four gospels; as in Jesus the King (Matthew), the Servant (Mark), the Man (Luke); and in the fourth Gospel (John), the Eagle is related to the tribe of Dan (Gen 30:6, 49:16; Deut 28: 49) showing Jesus in judgment of sin and unrighteousness giving eternal life, eternity.*
Back to the Year of the Ox:
- The Ox represents the strength for ploughing toward the harvest. In biblical history it was said without the strength of the ox, there would be no harvest. For this reason, it was repeated in the Bible, do not muzzle the ox that tread the corn (Deut 25:4; 1 Cor 9:9; 1 Tim 5:18).
- The Ox is a picture of hard work and sacrifice, representing the work of Christ as the ultimate sacrifice for the future of families and mankind; which amounted to the redemption of man.
- It also represents quiet confidence, stability, determination with stamina and patience, and even stubbornness (in today’s world and long ago cultures) that achieves results. It shows the faith of Jesus in his determination to fulfil the Father’s plan despite the devil’s attack.
- The ox goes out ahead without hesitation to achieve its goal knocking down hindrances by its sheer strength and power. It is a picture of the early apostles in their conviction, determination and priority of Christ’s mission of the gospel of the kingdom. They unlocked God’s purposes with pioneering work accompanied by miracles, signs and wonders. If there is anything as an “ox anointing” it is this apostolic spirit that belongs to God’s kingdom people today.
Pardon my indulging in what students of the Bible have surfaced regarding the four faces of God in this New Year greeting. There isn’t an intention to make too much a big deal of this. But there is an intention to encourage our saints in NLRC to be optimistic in this global pandemic that have affected many in finance and other ways. Let us be in strength and determination to move ahead in God’s power that pounds through hindrances for God’s life in us and our family; and in God’s work that brings a harvest of souls for God’s kingdom. Let us disciple one another towards good results.