The Day We Become Calves!

Posted on January 9, 2020


By David Ettinger

An Otherwise Stark Chapter
Believers in the Lord Jesus Christ have much to look forward to, the apex of which is the return of Christ and the bliss awaiting us in that great day and following.

One thing not on our list is to be divinely changed into calves. In fact, if such a thought ever entered your mind, that would be cause for alarm! Of course, we will not be changed into calves. However, the Bible tells us Christians will become like calves in a specific way.

Malachi Chapter 4 holds the key. This final 6 verses of the Old Testament is actually quite stark, as it addresses the Day of the Lord ­– that time at the end of this era of human history when Jesus will return to first judge, and then restore, the earth.

Though this will be a time when God will “trample on the wicked” (v. 3), Malachi reserves one verse to address the joy awaiting those who love Christ. And what a verse it is!

The “Calf” Verse
Verse 2 stands in sharp contrast to the surrounding five verses of this bleak chapter, and it is stunning: “But for you who revere my name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its rays. And you will go out and frolic like well-fed calves.”

It is usually the “sun of righteousness” part of this verse which gets most of the attention, but I love the imagery of frolicking calves.

The reference is to young, strong, healthy calves which have been cooped up for hours in their pens. When at last they are let out, they leap about, romp around, and gleefully revel in their newfound freedom. They are bursting with vigor and now have the opportunity to give unfettered expression to their emancipation.

Malachi 4:2 is a picture of joyous, exuberant, and radiant life!

Significance to Believers
This jubilant imagery pictures believers’ deliverance from this sin-sick, sin-stained world in which we’ve been cooped up. When Christ punishes and removes the wicked from off the earth, He will restore this planet into its original pristine state (2 Peter 3:10-13), and we will receive our new bodies at the Rapture (1 Corinthians 15:35-58). We will next be ushered into Christ’s Millennial (1,000-year) Kingdom (Revelation 20:1-6; Isaiah Chapter 11), and then into the eternal state (Revelation Chapters 21-22).

Physically, like robust, spirited calves, we will experience ideal, youthful health for eternity. And yes, if we want to frolic around with our dynamic, powerful bodies, then we will be free to do so!

But more than anything, the curse of sin will have been banished. Our spiritual liberation will be permanent; never again will temptation and transgression torment us. We will be spiritually and physically perfect, and the suffering caused by aging will be eradicated.

If you love the Lord Jesus Christ, eagerly anticipate the day you become a calf! It will be a day of unimagined freedom, jubilation, and everlasting rejoicing!