God's Lamb

Ex 12:1-14

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INTRODUCTION

A.	As the Death Angel was preparing for his journey through Egypt, a firstborn son asked his father 
	to make sure that blood had been applied to the doorframe as Moses had instructed.
	1.	The father told his firstborn not to worry about the blood, for his brother had taken care of it 
		earlier.
	2.	"Just be certain that Josiah put it there," the boy replied.
	3.	"OK," said the father.
		a.	The two of them went to the doorpost & found that no blood was there.
		b.	The father quickly applied the blood to the doorframe & the son slept easily that night.
B.	That fictional story illustrates just how important blood is in the scheme of redemption.
	1.	In tonight's text, God promises that when he sees the blood on the doorposts, he will pass 
		over the Israelites' homes (v 13).
	2.	Tonight, we wish to go back several thousand years to that night the Death Angel made his 
		journey through Egypt.
		a.	In particular, we want to look at the lamb the Israelites were to have that night.
		b.	READ TEXT.
		c.	What do we learn about God's lamb?

GOD'S LAMB IS A CHANGING LAMB, v 2

A.	The lamb the Israelites were to get would forever change them: "This month shall be for you the 
	beginning of months. It shall be the first month of the year for you."
B.	The Israelite calendar would forever be tied up with God's lamb.  There are a couple important 
	theological concepts at play here:
	1.	God, with this sacrificial lamb, is making everything new.
		a.	For 400 years, the Israelites had been in captivity in Egypt.
		b.	Now, God was going to give his people a new era of freedom.
		c.	God continues his work of making all things new.
			1)	2 Cor 5:17.
			2)	2 Pt 3:13.
	2.	Time is centered around the activity of God.
		a.	Every time the Israelites would hear what year it was, they would remember what God 
			had done.
		b.	All of time is centered around what God has done.
			1)	Eccl 3:1.
			2)	The Israelites kept a weekly Sabbath because God created the world in 6 days & 
				rested on the 7th.  We assemble on the first day of the week, instead of the Sabbath, 
				because God raised his Son on the first day of the week.
			3)	All of time is currently moving to the final culmination of God's activity when he 
				sends his Son back to judge the world.

GOD'S LAMB IS A COMMUNITY LAMB, v 3-4

A.	The Israelites were only to take a lamb if their homes needed a whole lamb.  If their homes could 
	get by with less, they were to pool their resources with their neighbor & get a lamb together.
B.	This is a beautiful picture of community.
	1.	Instead of wasting lambs, neighbors were to come together & help one another.
	2.	Even in the OT, God expected his people to help one another.
		a.	Lev 25:35-38.
		b.	Is 58:6-8.
	3.	Is there a true spirit of community among us?  Are we willing to help those who need help?
		a.	Acts 4:34-35.
		b.	1 Jn 3:17-18.
		c.	I heard a preacher just this past week asks this penetrating question: "We have the sign 
			out front, but do we have the heart inside?"
			1)	Do we have the heart inside?
			2)	Are we helping those who need our help?

GOD'S LAMB IS A CROWNING LAMB, v 5

A.	The lamb the Israelites selected was to be a crowning lamb from the flock-one without spot or 
	blemish.
B.	The Israelites were not just to get any lamb, but they were to get their best.
	1.	God has always demanded the best from man.
		a.	When Abel brought "the firstborn of his flock and of their fat portions" God was pleased 
			(Gn 4:4).
		b.	Ps 119:34.
	2.	Are we giving God our crowning worship?  The best worship we can give?

GOD'S LAMB IS A CRIMSON LAMB, vv 7, 13

A.	"Then [the children of Israel] shall take some of the blood and put it on the two doorposts and 
	the lintel of the houses in which they eat it. . . . 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."
B.	God has long required blood sacrifices.
	1.	Here, God promises that when he sees the blood from his lamb, he will pass over the 
		Israelites.
	2.	Blood was required to consecrate priests as holy (Ex 29:19-21).
	3.	Once a year, Aaron was to make atonement with blood (Lev 16).

GOD'S LAMB IS A CLOTHED LAMB, V 11

A.	The Israelites were to eat their lamb & the rest of their Passover meal fully clothed for a journey-
	with their belts fastened, their sandals on their feet, & their staff in their hand.  They were to eat 
	in a hurry.
B.	Why?
	1.	Because when God went through Egypt-as he was about to do-the Egyptians would run the 
		Israelites out of Egypt faster than you could blink an eye.
		a.	In fact, that is precisely the way it happened.
		b.	When Pharaoh arose in the night to find his firstborn son dead, he called Moses & Aaron 
			and said to them: "Up, go out from among my people, both you and the people of Israel; 
			and go, serve the LORD, as you have said. Take your flocks and your herds, as you have 
			said, and be gone, and bless me also!" (Ex 12:31-32).
	2.	The symbolic point for the Israelites was that God was about to act for their benefit in a BIG 
		way.

GOD'S LAMB IS A CONVICTION LAMB, v 12

A.	God's lamb had two-sides:
	1.	As we have already mentioned, for the Israelites, the lamb was their pardon, their escape 
		from the death God was bringing upon all the firstborn in Egypt.
	2.	Yet, for the Egyptians, the God's lamb was for their judgment-without that lamb, the 
		Egyptians would suffer greatly. 
B.	The night the Israelites ate the Passover, the Lord swept through Egypt & executed judgment.
	1.	"At midnight the Lord struck down all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of 
		Pharaoh who sat on his throne to the firstborn of the captive who was in the dungeon, and all 
		the firstborn of the livestock" (Ex 12:29).
	2.	Judgment came because the Egyptians did not have the blood of God's lamb above their 
		doorposts.

CONCLUSION

A.	We've gone through a great deal of material tonight rather hurriedly.  This text contains much 
	valuable information for us in this present age & I wish we had more time to think about it.
B.	But, the reason we've gone so hurriedly is so that we can apply this passage to Jesus Christ, our 
	Passover Lamb.
	1.	Jesus is often called a "Lamb" in the New Testament.
		a.	Jn 1:29.
		b.	We were ransomed "with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without blemish 
			or spot" (1 Pt 1:19).
		c.	Rev 5:8-10.
	2.	However, these texts to not specifically compare Jesus to the Passover lamb.
		a.	However, Paul does so in 1 Cor 5:7: "Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed."
		b.	Paul also informs us that Old Testament festivals were only a shadow of what was to come 
			in Christ: "Let no one pass judgment on you in questions of food and drink, or with 
			regard to a festival or a new moon or a Sabbath.  These are a shadow of the things to 
			come, but the substance belongs to Christ" (Col 1:16-17).
	3.	Therefore, we want to spend some time thinking about how the Passover lamb in the Old 
		Testament was a forerunner of Jesus.
C.	Jesus is A CHANGING LAMB.
	1.	Through the sacrifice of Jesus, this world is a different place.
	2.	It is he who changes our lives: As we are buried into his sacrificial death through baptism, we 
		are raised different people (Rom 6:4).
	3.	It is he who brings new bodies when this world is no more (1 Cor 15:47-49).
D.	Jesus is A COMMUNITY LAMB.
	1.	It is he who has created a community out of quite divergent people.
	2.	Speaking of Jesus' making Jew & Gentile into one body, Paul writes: Eph 2:14-16.
	3.	It is often said that "Politics makes strange bedfellows."
		a.	We see that often as people who normally aren't tied together ideologically come together 
			around a certain piece of legislation.
		b.	Yet, politics has never made as strange "bedfellows" as Jesus has.
			1)	Jesus brings different races, different ideologies, different ethnicities, different 
				economic & educational levels and makes them one in him.
			2)	It's not at all uncommon to walk into many congregations and to see the "upper 
				strata" of society worshiping right beside the "lower strata" of society.
			3)	It certainly should be that way, for Jesus has made all those in him into one 
				community.
E.	Jesus is A CROWNING LAMB.
	1.	There is no defect in him at all; rather he it utter perfection.
		a.	Is 53:9.
		b.	1 Pt 1:19.
		c.	1 Pt 2:22-24.
	2.	Only because Jesus is A CROWNING LAMB was he able to go to Golgotha in my stead.
F.	Jesus is A CRIMSON LAMB.
	1.	Only through Jesus' shedding of blood do I have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
		a.	Mt 26:27-28.
		b.	Eph 1:7.
		c.	Rev 1:5b.
		d.	Rev 5:9.
	2.	Because Jesus is A CRIMSON LAMB & shed his blood, every sin I've ever committed as been 
		removed as far from me as the east is from the west.
G.	Jesus is A CLOTHED LAMB.
	1.	Jesus himself was not clothed on the cross.
		a.	Mt 27:35.  Obviously, if Jesus' garments are being divided after Jesus was placed on the 
			cross, he was not dressed in those garments.
		b.	It was quite customary for the condemned to die without even a loincloth.
			1)	The purpose of that was utter humiliation.
			2)	Among Jews, public nakedness was considered the supreme humiliation.
		c.	My purpose here is simply to show that the cross was one of the most humiliating, 
			shameful ways to die ever devised by man.
	2.	But, Jesus' cross is also a sign that God is acting for his people.
		a.	It is at the cross that all our sins have been removed.
		b.	It is at the cross that God creates a new people.
		c.	It is at the cross that God gives new lives.
		d.	It is at the cross that God accepts the sacrifice of the Holy for the unholy, the Just for the 
			unjust.
H.	Jesus is A CONVICTION LAMB.
	1.	While for us, the cross is a sign of God's redemption, for those on the way to hell, it is a sign of 
		God's coming judgment.
	2.	1 Cor 1:18.
I.	Interestingly, the Israelites in this passage were to eat the lamb that was for their redemption.
	1.	Likewise, we eat the lamb that is for our redemption.
		a.	Mt 26:26-29.
		b.	Without eating that lamb, we cannot have salvation: Jn 6:53-58.
	2.	Are you eating the flesh & drinking the blood of the Son of Man?
		a.	Do you need to come & be baptized into his death, so that you may eat his flesh & drink 
			his blood?
		b.	If you need to come, why not come right now as we stand & sing?

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Gods Lamb
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