Let us hear, then, how Israel, when dying in Egypt, in blessing his sons, prophetically blessed Judah. He says: "Judah, thy brethren shall praise thee: thy hands shall be on the back of thine enemies; thy father's children shall adore thee. Judah is a lion's whelp: from the sprouting, my son, thou art gone up: lying down, thou hast slept as a lion, and as a lion's whelp; who shall awake him? A prince shall not be lacking out of Judah, and a leader from his thighs, until the things come that are laid up for him; and He shall be the expectation of the nations. Binding his foal unto the vine, and his ass's foal to the choice vine; he shall wash his robe in wine, and his teeth are whiter than milk." I have expounded these words in disputing against Faustus the Manichaean; and I think it is enough to make the truth of this prophecy shine, to remark that the death of Christ is predicted by the word about his lying down, and not the necessity, but the voluntary character of His death, in the title of lion. That power He Himself proclaims in the gospel, saying, "I have the power of laying down my life, and I have the power of taking it again. No man taketh it from me; but I lay it down of myself, and take it again." So the lion roared, so He fulfilled what He said. For to this power what is added about the resurrection refers, "Who shall awake him?" This means that no man but Himself has raised Him, who also said of His own body, "Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up." And the very nature of His death, that is, the height of the cross, is understood by the single word, "Thou art gone up." The evangelist explains what is added, "Lying down, thou hast slept," when he says, "He bowed His head, and gave up the ghost." Or at least His burial is to be understood, in which He lay down sleeping, and whence no man raised Him, as the prophets did some, and as He Himself did others; but He Himself rose up as if from sleep.
- St. Augustine, City of God