Jesus is the Lion of Judah. This is no random metaphor, according to the medieval bestiary, the verse Physiologus attributed to the 11th-century writer Theobaldus. Lions have various habits, all of which point to Christ.

For instance: “As the Lion dwells on the high mountain, so Christ the spiritual Lion dwells in the highest heaven. Whence He says ‘I dwell in the highest.’ And as the Lion, when he comes down from the mountain, wipes out with his tail the marks of his feet, lest the hunter should find them out, so Christ, when He descended from heaven into the womb of the glorious Virgin Mary, in order that He might redeem the Human Race by His incarnation, hid Himself, so that not one of the Demons knew Christ to be the Son of God, or born of the Virgin Mary.”

Lion cubs are “dead” until the third day, when the lion mother rouses them. Further, “as the Lion, whenever it sleeps, never closes its eyes, so Christ never closes the eyes of His tender mercy, but always guards us as a watchful shepherd, lest the Destroyer, that is the Devil, should carry off any one from His flock.”

Even the name lion carries an allegory: ‘leo,' ‘leonis’ (a Lion) is derived from ‘Leo,' ‘les,’ ‘lere’ (to wipe out or destroy), in simple form, which form is not now in use. For as the Lion destroys all other animals, so Christ destroys all His adversaries, namely sinners.”