For many, many years the chosen race of Abraham the Israelites were captives in the land of Egypt They were slaves to the Egyptians and had to work very hard. They cried to God for deliverance, and He raised them up a leader who led them out of the land. The wicked king refused to let them go, and God worked miracles for them. He told Moses, their leader, what they should do, and Moses told the people.
He said to them, “Each man is to choose a lamb, a lamb for a family, a perfect lamb. Keep it four days. Then the lamb is to be killed. Put its blood in a basin. Take a brush and sprinkle the blood across the top and down the side of the house. Then be sure that every member of the family is in the house behind the blood sprinkled door.
God has said, “I will pass through the land, and in every home, where they have believed My Word and where the blood has been sprinkled on the door, the whole family will be safe; but where they have not believed My Word, and where the blood has not been sprinkled on the door, the first born will die. '" This man will stand for one who believed God's Word. He took the perfect lamb as God had said. He kept it for four days and then killed it. He sprinkled the blood on the door just as he had been told to do. Behind the blood sprinkled door the whole family gathered with peace in their hearts for they knew that they were safe. The death angel would not stop at their home that night, for a little lamb had already died. Because they trusted God's Word and obeyed Him, they were safe. A little lamb had died as a substitute for the first born and the family.
The chosen race became a great nation. There were millions of them of all ages, little children and old people. God had given them laws by which they were to be governed. Part of this law had to do with the way they were to come to God. It was always through sacrifice, through a little lamb or other animal dying in their place. Then there were sacrifices to be made for the whole nation. The priests, those who ministered at the tabernacle and later in the temple, were to offer two lambs a day as a sacrifice, one in the morning and one in the evening. Each day this was to be done. They were never to forget this offering but to do it day after day as an offering for the whole nation.
Abel brought a lamb for himself; in Egypt they brought a lamb for a family; here we have a lamb for a nation. What does it mean?
The little lamb that died for Abel could not take away his sin. The little lamb in Egypt could not take away the sin of the family. The lambs brought by the priests could not take away the sin of the nation. All the thousands of lambs put to death through the Old Testament times could not take away sin. They all looked ahead to God's Lamb who should take away the sin of the world. This is Jesus. Those who lived in Old Testament times, walking in the footsteps of trusting and obeying, knew that a lamb could not take away their sins. But they believed that until He came, they were to trust God's Word and obey Him by bringing a lamb to take their place and be punished instead of them.
When the people of the Jewish race heard John say, “Behold the Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world, " they understood at least part of what he meant, that Jesus had come to be God's Lamb to take away the sin of the whole world, not just of one man, or one family or even one nation, but the whole world. After Jesus died, no one need ever again bring a lamb as a sacrifice. Jesus is our Lamb.
The lambs that were offered as sacrifices before the Lord Jesus came tell us some things that were true of Him as God's Lamb:
1) They had to be perfect. They would be looked over very carefully to make sure that there was nothing wrong with them. A lamb that was too thin, or had broken skin, or was lame, could not be used for the sacrifice. So our Lord Jesus was perfect. If He had eve sinned even the least little bit, He would have had to die for His own sin.
2) The lamb gave up his life to save others. He had done nothing wrong, but he died as a substitute for sinners who had broken God's holy law. And God accepted this in the place of
the man who truly trusted Him. So our Lord Jesus meekly gave up His life. The Bible says He
was led as a lamb to the slaughter. He did this as my substitute and yours so that Satan's
power over us might be broken. God accepts the work of His Son as having paid the ransom
Just as in Old Testament times the person who had sinned must put his hand on the head of the lamb and confess his sin, so each one of us must come by himself. Think seriously about, “Do I believe that it was for me Jesus died, as if I had been the only person in the world? Is He my lamb?" If the answer is yes, then confess your sin to God repent and be baptised.
Julia Shipley is a committed Christian worshipping and serving in her local church. She has a heart for the young children and the youth believing the word of God is the final authority. For more information visit http://www.quick-christian-resources.com