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Ralph's Daily Devotional - Wednesday, April 4

Lambs are yet another animal of the Bible.  In Genesis 22, a lamb is sacrificed in place of Abraham's son Isaac. Lambs are used in Scripture to symbolize innocence and gentleness.  As such, they serve as a perfect sacrifice.  I find lambs so cute.  I don't like the idea of sacrificing them, but then again I seem to have no problem with lamb chops!  The idea of sacrificing animals goes all the way back to the story of Cain and Abel.

Jesus was initially called the lamb of God by John the baptist.  Jesus fulfills this by becoming the sacrificial lamb of God through his atoning death on the cross for our sins (John 1:29, 3:16).

In Islam, Muslims do not make sacrifices using living animals.  Instead, charity is a means of sacrifice.  Both have a similar meaning.  It's about giving something valuable to God and denying ourselves.  Sacrifice of animals in the Bible involves the loss and giving of a life.

In Genesis 3, having disobeyed God, man was brought into spiritual death.  The animal sacrifice involved a death on man's behalf and was symbolic of God's forgiveness.  In other words, it paid our penalty that we may be freed of sin.

Of course this was symbolic, but its fulfillment was Christ as foretold in Isaiah 53:4-6.  Christianity then is not our sacrifice to God, but God's sacrifice to us!  As Paul states, "He who knew no sin, became sin for us."

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