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The Lord’s Passover lamb

Apr 4, 2012, 2:31 PM | Article By: Galandou Gorre-Ndiaye

After 430 years of slavery in Egypt, God used Moses, His chosen deliverer, to champion the release of the Children of Israel from under Pharaoh’s treachery. At the final stage of the negotiations with Pharaoh – who all along had put up stubborn resistance – Moses had instructed each Israelite family to slaughter a lamb. “The animals you choose must be year-old males without defect…” (Exodus 12: 5) By this he meant a young ram that was spotless.

On the eve of their departure from Egypt, the spotless lamb - without any defect - was to be slaughtered and its blood smeared over the doorpost as a sign that an Israelite family lived there. “And I will see the blood and will pass over you.” (Exodus 12:13) The blood of the lamb offered protection. No loss of a first-born was registered in the homes were a lamb was slain and the blood smeared on the doorpost.

That spotless lamb whose blood was smeared on the doorpost, foreshadowed the time when our Lord Jesus - who knew no sin and in whom there was no deceit - would shed His blood on the cross of Calvary for the redemption of humanity. (Ephesians 1:7) Henceforth, anyone who calls on the name of the Lord Jesus shall be saved and set free from the shackles of sin. Even though he dies he shall live. Death ceases to become a hindrance. “Death has been swallowed up in victory … But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” (1 Corinthians 15:54, 56)

“…the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.” (1 Peter 1:19)

The battle over sin has been settled “once and for all.” (Hebrews 9:12) The Lamb of God has taken away the sins of the world and has nailed them on a tree. He alone could pay the price of sin because “…it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins.” (Hebrews 10:4) That was a make-shift measure until Jesus laid down His life. 


That Judas betrayed Jesus for thirty pieces of silver and later identified Him to His enemies accelerated the chain of events leading to Jesus’ arrest. That betrayal also had been prophesied. “Even my close friend, whom I trusted, he who shared my bread, has lifted up his heel against me.” (Psalm 41: 9) your ‘under-belly’ friend could be your worst enemy.

Moses had instructed the Children of Israel thus. “Do not break any of the bones.” (Exodus 12:47) The bones of the sacrificial lamb were not to be broken. It was the practice during the first century for the Romans to break the bones of the culprit that hung on the tree as a means of confirming his death. “Now it was the Day of Preparation, and the next day was to be a special Sabbath. Because the Jews did not want the bodies left on the crosses during the Sabbath, they asked Pilate to have the legs broken and the bodies taken down.  The soldiers then came and broke the legs of the first man who had been crucified with Jesus, and those of the other. But when they came to Jesus and found that he had already died, they did not break his legs.” (John 19:31) Prophecy fulfilled!

As our Lord Jesus hung on the cross, passers-by mocked and threw insults at Him. Scripture had forewarned of that kind of comportment. Its perpetrators did not realise they were fulfilling Scripture however. The blood of a human being could not suffice to pay the penalty for sin. God Himself had to appoint His Son to serve as a Substitute for us. “But He was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed. We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.” (Isaiah 53:5-6) “Yet it was the Lord’s will to crush Him and cause Him to suffer..” (Isaiah 53:10) “God made Him who knew no sin to become sin for us, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God.” (2 Corinthians 5:21)

Our relation with God, the Father, is so very important that He considered the precious life of His Son in replacement with ours. God, the Son, Himself, would quit heaven just to perform this task required of Him by His Father. This is no ordinary matter.

The Passover Lamb that the Children of Israel sacrificed as they made their exodus from Egypt has become our Lord Jesus Himself. Like sheep, “He was oppressed and afflicted, yet He did not open His mouth: He was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is silent, so He did not open His mouth. “ (Isaiah 53:7)

The borrowed grave they had put Him in was a fulfilment of prophecy. “He was assigned a grave with the wicked, and with the rich in His death, though He had done no violence, nor was any deceit found in His mouth.” (Isaiah 53:9)

God had a plan for humanity that is fulfilled in His Son Christ Jesus. It was a redemption plan. Because He loves us so much, he offered His only Son that He may bear our sins – irrespective of race, tribe or creed. “For He bore the sin of many.” ( Isaiah 53:12:b) His love is spelt out thus: “God so loved the world that He gave His only beloved Son that whoever believes in Him may not perish but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16)

Our Lord Jesus declared in the Gospel of John chapter 10 verse 35 that “Scripture cannot be broken”. What you and I think is irrelevant. The final authority is Scripture. Jesus came to manifest His love for all humanity by giving His life up for our salvation. “Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12) Believe Jesus loves you!