Sunday, April 12, 2009

Passover 1: The Blood of the Lamb

This will be the first of three installments concerning Passover. This post will address the Lamb of God, Jesus Christ, in Passover. The next will deal with the death of the firstborn, and the third with the unleavened bread.

Passover Part 1 The Lamb

Exodus 12:
1The LORD said to Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt, 2 "This month shall be for you the beginning of months. It shall be the first month of the year for you. 3Tell all the congregation of Israel that on the tenth day of this month every man shall take a lamb according to their fathers’ houses, a lamb for a household. 4And if the household is too small for a lamb, then he and his nearest neighbor shall take according to the number of persons; according to what each can eat you shall make your count for the lamb. 5Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male a year old. You may take it from the sheep or from the goats, 6and you shall keep it until the fourteenth day of this month, when the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill their lambs at twilight.
7"Then they shall take some of the blood and put it on the two doorposts and the lintel of the houses in which they eat it. 8They shall eat the flesh that night, roasted on the fire; with unleavened bread and bitter herbs they shall eat it. 9Do not eat any of it raw or boiled in water, but roasted, its head with its legs and its inner parts. 10And you shall let none of it remain until the morning; anything that remains until the morning you shall burn. 11In this manner you shall eat it: with your belt fastened, your sandals on your feet, and your staff in your hand. And you shall eat it in haste. It is the LORD’s Passover. 12For I will pass through the land of Egypt that night, and I will strike all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and on all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgments: I am the LORD. 13 The blood shall be a sign for you, on the houses where you are. And when I see the blood, I will pass over you, and no plague will befall you to destroy you, when I strike the land of Egypt. 14"This day shall be for you a memorial day, and you shall keep it as a feast to the LORD; throughout your generations, as a statute forever, you shall keep it as a feast.


21Then Moses called all the elders of Israel and said to them, "Go and select lambs for yourselves according to your clans, and kill the Passover lamb. 22Take a bunch of hyssop and dip it in the blood that is in the basin, and touch the lintel and the two doorposts with the blood that is in the basin. None of you shall go out of the door of his house until the morning. 23 For the LORD will pass through to strike the Egyptians, and when he sees the blood on the lintel and on the two doorposts, the LORD will pass over the door and will not allow the destroyer to enter your houses to strike you. 24You shall observe this rite as a statute for you and for your sons forever. 25And when you come to the land that the LORD will give you, as he has promised, you shall keep this service. 26And when your children say to you, 'What do you mean by this service?' 27you shall say, 'It is the sacrifice of the LORD’s Passover, for he passed over the houses of the people of Israel in Egypt, when he struck the Egyptians but spared our houses.'" And the people bowed their heads and worshiped.

Hebrews 11:
28 By faith he (Moses) kept the Passover and sprinkled the blood, so that the Destroyer of the firstborn might not touch them.

1. Of primary importance are these crucial aspects of the Passover:

a) The Lord institutes His calendar for the Hebrews, beginning with the month of Nisan. The Passover which is about to take place will occur on 14th day of the month. The fact that God creates this Calendar, i.e. a new reference re: keeping time for His people, speaks of the new creation. Rev 21:5;2 Cor 5:17;Galatians 6:15

b) The Lamb that was to be eaten, not offered, must be without blemish. It must be a male and a yearling. (a lamb which has reached the age of one year is technically a sheep)

If we compare this to Leviticus chapters 4 and 5, for example, there are some major differences. Lev 4 and 5 address, for the most part, offerings concerning sins committed unintentionally. The required animal sacrifices are bulls,rams (obviously male) and goats and lambs which must be female, and all without blemish. There are also offerings which can be made with turtledoves or pigeons, and even an ephah of flour. So we see there are many "sin offerings" depending upon the type of sin committed.

Here in Exodus we have a lamb which is a male and will be eaten. Whatever is not eaten must be burned, but none the less, every portion of this lamb must be consumed. There can be no trace left.

Also the Passover, and its' requirements, was obviously instituted before the Law was given to Israel at Sinai. Therefore the Lamb of Passover, and the animal sacrifices of the Levitical law, have completely different functions. There is no mention of forgiveness of sins concerning the Passover Lamb.

The blood of this totally consumed lamb, must be spread on the lintel and doorposts of each Hebrew home.

The Lord was going to strike Egypt with a terrible and final plague, the death of all the firstborn of Egypt, including the firstborn of all the animals. He himself, was going to pass through the land with the Destroyer, who would slay these firstborn. The blood of this lamb on the doorways of the Hebrew households would prevent God from sending the Destroyer into those particular homes. Those who abide under the covering of the blood belong to the Lamb. They have entered into the "covering" of His death, so that they would live.

Hebrews 11: 28 tells us that to enter into the death of the lamb is an act of faith.

Eph 2: 8 For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God,
9 not a result of works, so that no one may boast.

Heb 11: 6 And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him

James 2:17 So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.

2. Jesus Christ is the Lamb of God. He is the Passover Lamb.

1 Cor 5:
6 Your boasting is not good. Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump? 7Cleanse out the old leaven that you may be a new lump, as you really are unleavened. For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed. 8Let us therefore celebrate the festival, not with the old leaven, the leaven of malice and evil, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.

1Peter 1: 18 knowing that you were ransomed from the futile ways inherited from your forefathers, not with perishable things such as silver or gold,19 but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without blemish or spot.20 He was foreknown before the foundation of the world but was made manifest in the last times for the sake of you

John 1: 29 The next day he saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, "Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!

The fact that there would be a need for the Lamb, was foreknown by God. This knowledge pre-dates creation. So the Lamb is eternal, i.e. always was, is and will be.
All the required attributes of the lamb, e.g. no spot or blemish, a male etc etc, are found in Christ. Only the one who is perfect, sinless, without blemish, is worthy to be the Lamb who was slain. He alone is worthy to be the sacrifice as all the other sheep are blemished, and His death makes Him worthy to receive the joy set before Him.

The blood of the Lamb is the ransom paid for the redeemed. The redeemed are those delivered from the hand of the Destroyer. Matthew 20:28;Mark 10:45

Rev 5: 11 Then I looked, and I heard around the throne and the living creatures and the elders the voice of many angels, numbering myriads of myriads and thousands of thousands,12 saying with a loud voice, "Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!"

Interesting to note that Moses told the elders of Israel to kill the Lamb. Ex12:21

Compare that to this:

John 11: 47 So the chief priests and the Pharisees gathered the Council and said, "What are we to do? For this man performs many signs.
48 If we let him go on like this, everyone will believe in him, and the Romans will come and take away both our place and our nation."

49 But one of them, Caiaphas, who was high priest that year, said to them, "You know nothing at all.
50 Nor do you understand that it is better for you that one man should die for the people, not that the whole nation should perish."
51 He did not say this of his own accord, but being high priest that year he prophesied that Jesus would die for the nation,
52 and not for the nation only, but also to gather into one the children of God who are scattered abroad.

3. The Lamb who was slain has book of life in which only the names of the redeemed appear. These names are also foreknown before the foundation of the world. The redeemed belong to the Lamb.

Rev 13:8 and all who dwell on earth will worship it, (the beast) everyone whose name has not been written before the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb who was slain.

1Co 7:23 You were bought with a price; do not become slaves of men.

The redeemed are Israel, i.e. all who are of the lineage,by faith, of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.
They are all who are called out by the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. My previous posts on Isaac and Ishmael and Jacob and Esau go into more detail about this. They are all who are baptized into the death of the Lamb.

Rom 6:4 We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.
5 For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his.

Passover marks the day that the Lord brings His people out, and delivers them out from the burdens of slavery. The day redemption comes in mighty acts of judgment. The day they become His and he becomes theirs'. The day that the journey begins to bring them into the land which He gives to them as a possession. Praise God we are His people!
Exodus 6:6-8

Rom 6:10 For the death he died he died to sin, once for all, but the life he lives he lives to God.11 So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus.

So Christ, as the Lamb of God, suffers death, for the sake of those who are being brought out.
Passover is the story of the judgment of death to the sin nature, the old man, i.e. first Adam, and the resurrection into new life.

Rev 5: 6 And between the throne and the four living creatures and among the elders I saw a Lamb standing, as though it had been slain, with seven horns and with seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth.
7 And he went and took the scroll from the right hand of him who was seated on the throne.
8 And when he had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each holding a harp, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints.
9 And they sang a new song, saying, "Worthy are you to take the scroll and to open its seals, for you were slain, and by your blood you ransomed people for God from every tribe and language and people and nation,
10 and you have made them a kingdom and priests to our God, and they shall reign on the earth."
11 Then I looked, and I heard around the throne and the living creatures and the elders the voice of many angels, numbering myriads of myriads and thousands of thousands,
12 saying with a loud voice, "Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!"
13 And I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea, and all that is in them, saying, "To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be blessing and honor and glory and might forever and ever!"

Next: The Firstborn and the Unleavened Bread

Worthy Is The Lamb!

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