The Passover Lamb

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Joni and Friends
The Passover Lamb

by Joni Eareckson Tada

“They are to take some of the blood and put it on the sides and tops of the doorframes of the houses where they eat the lambs…On that same night I will pass through Egypt and strike down every firstborn…The blood will be a sign for you on the houses where you are; and when I see the blood, I will pass over you. No destructive plague will touch you when I strike Egypt.”

Exodus 12:7, 12-13

We usually think of the Day of Atonement as a time of sin sacrifice. It was during Atonement Day—sometime in the month equivalent to our August—that the nation of Israel sought reconciliation for its sins. After sacrificing a bullock, the high priest chose a goat for a sin offering and sacrificed it. After that a scapegoat bearing the sins of the people was sent into the wilderness—this scapegoat symbolized the pardon for sin brought through the sacrifice. With all this emphasis on sin and sacrifice, ever wonder why Jesus didn’t go to the cross on the Day of Atonement?

God chose Passover rather than the Day of Atonement as the time his Son would go to the cross. Jesus is not symbolized as a bullock or a goat but a lamb. At the first Passover in Egypt, it was the blood of a lamb that was smeared on the sides and tops of the doorframes, ensuring that the firstborn of the family would not be killed. God provided a way for his people to escape judgment. He provided deliverance. He provided a means of rescue.

This is what God provided through Christ’s death and resurrection. A way of escape. A deliverance. The Day of Atonement was an opportunity for the people to do something for God; Passover symbolizes a time when God did something for his people. So also it is true of the cross—we have done nothing for it, but it has done everything for us.

Notice that the blood of the lamb was not smeared on the threshold of the doors of the Israelites’ homes. The blood was not to be trampled underfoot. The lesson is for us today: Christ has rescued us through his precious blood. May we never tread on his gift nor crush underfoot his favor.

Praise you, Lord Jesus, for rescuing and delivering me just as you delivered the Israelites from judgment. Thank you, Lamb of God.

Taken from More Precious than Silver

By Joni Eareckson Tada

Copyright © 1998
Published in Print by Zondervan, Grand Rapids

All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible: New International Version.

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