Ralph's Daily Devotional - Tuesday, June 26

Specific instructions are given in Exodus 12:1-11 as to the observance of the Passover.  The event is not simply one of God's terrible judgment given in a one-time event, but rather an event that is to be commemorated and celebrated for all time.  It includes an unblemished lamb, unleavened bread (matsah), bitter herbs, and, most importantly, the blood.  For a highly detailed analysis of this I recommend Nahum Sarna's "Exodus" pages 85-93.

The blood serves as a sign of Hebrew protection against the oncoming plague (Exodus 12:7Exodus 12:23).  The angel will "pass over" those Hebrew homes whose doorposts are covered by the lamb's sacrificial blood.

Animal sacrifice was an essential part of Israel's religion.  With the ending of the temple in 70 AD, sacrificial offerings ended.  Today, Jews believe that the sacrifices of the heart have replaced literal animal sacrifice.

In reality, it has not.  The death of the Messiah Jesus remains the one true and lasting sacrifice for sin.  He is called the "Lamb of God" and there are many references to his atonement for our sin, Isaiah 53 being the most quoted.

The Lord, in establishing the new covenant and Lord's Supper, sees Himself in this role, as he states: "This is my body, broken for you.  Do this in remembrance of Me."  He is our new Passover lamb.  Jesus' death was given for our sins.  As the Hebrews were delivered from Pharaoh's bondage, we are delivered from the bondage of Satan, sin and death.  The judgment of God has "passed over" us and has been placed on Jesus, whose cross symbolizes the terrible price he paid for our sins and release and by whose blood we are now delivered.

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