What does the Bible mean when it says that "the lion will eat straw like the ox"

The phrase "the lion will eat straw like the ox" is found in several places in the Old Testament, including Isaiah 11:7 and 65:25. This phrase is often understood as a metaphor for a time of peace and harmony, when even the most ferocious and predatory animals will live peacefully alongside their prey.

In the Bible, straw is often used as food for livestock, particularly for animals like horses and cattle. While oxen do not typically eat straw, they can digest it if it is properly prepared and mixed with other feed. Therefore, the use of the word "straw" in this phrase is likely meant to convey the idea of a simple, plant-based diet that is eaten by domesticated animals.

The phrase "the lion will eat straw like the ox" is part of a larger vision of a new creation, in which all of creation will be restored to its original state of wholeness and harmony. This vision speaks to the hope and longing for a world in which violence and predation will no longer exist and all creatures will live in peace.

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Jamie Larson