The ‘Lamb’ of the New Testament

     Major Biblical doctrines foreshadowed in the Old Testament are in fact fulfilled in Christ in the New Testament.  Such is the case with the Old Testament Passover Lamb.  The New Testament opens with the gospel records of those who witnessed the birth, ministry, purpose, and death of Christ.
     The final book in the Old Testament told of one who would precede Christ and in fact announce His earthly appearance and mission.
     “Behold, I send My messenger, and he will prepare the way before Me.”  Malachi 3:1a
     The Apostle John then wrote about the one to precede Christ and who would announce His purpose.
     “The next day John (the Baptist) saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, ‘Behold!  The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!’”  John 1:29
     The gospel writers described the words and works of Christ throughout His earthly ministry which culminated in Jerusalem.  All four gospel writers explained why Jesus journeyed to Jerusalem where He would end His earthly mission.
     “Now it came to pass, when Jesus had finished all these sayings, that He said to His disciples, ‘You know that after two days is the Passover, and the Son of Man will be delivered up to be crucified.’”  Matthew 26:1-2
     When interrogated by Pontius Pilate, Jesus kept silent when the accusations from the High Priest and elders were leveled against Him in fulfillment of the prophecy of Isaiah, “Yet He opened not His mouth; He was led as a lamb to the slaughter”.
     “And while He was being accused by the chief priests and elders, He answered nothing.  Then Pilate said to Him, ‘Do You not hear how many things they testify against You?’  But He answered him not one word, so the governor marveled greatly.”  Matthew 27:12-14
     It was the Jewish leaders that brought the accusation of blasphemy against the Lamb of God and demanded His death because Jesus claimed to be the Son of God.
     Recall the original instructions relative to the Passover Lamb that God revealed to Moses who was to relay to ‘all the congregation of Israel’.
     “Your lamb shall be without blemish…Now you shall keep it until the fourteenth day of the same month.  Then the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it at twilight (evening).”  Exodus 12:5-6
     Just before the crucifixion of Christ the Apostle John recorded explicit details on the date and timing of Jesus’ death.
     “Now it was the Preparation Day of the Passover…And he (Pilate) said to the Jews, ‘Behold your King!’  But they cried out, ‘Away with Him, away with Him!  Crucify Him!’”  John 19:14-15
     Recall from the Old Testament that the Passover Lamb was to be slain at twilight.  The gospel writer Luke also recorded the exact timing of Jesus’ death.
     “Now it was about the sixth hour, and there was darkness over all the earth until the ninth hour (3:00 PM)…And when Jesus had cried out with a loud voice, He said, ‘Father, into Your hands I commit My spirit.’  Having said this, He breathed His last.”  Luke 23:44, 46
     After the death, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus, the writers of the Epistles reflected on the meaning of the events.  Paul confirmed plainly that Jesus Christ was indeed the Passover Lamb that ‘takes away the sin of the world’.
     “…For indeed Christ, our Passover, was sacrificed for us.”  I Corinthians 5:7
     Peter more fully described the meaning of the Passover Lamb.
     “Knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers, but with the precious blood of Christ as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.  He indeed was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you.”  I Peter 1:18-20
     Thus Christ was the Passover Lamb of God who perfectly fulfilled the primary doctrine in the Bible, redemption by the blood of a perfect ‘lamb without blemish’.
     But the story of the Lamb of God is far from over.  The best is yet to come.
     Have a blessed Passover and Easter!

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