"Workouts in the gymnasium are useful, but a disciplined life in God is far more so, making you fit both today and forever." -Paul

05 April 2006

Lamb of God

i write the curriculum for our sunday morning lessons that then gets distributed to about 20 teachers who teach it at both campuses. about a year and a half ago, i created a timeline that charts out everything that our jr high will study in their 2 year cycle through our program. and then each week, i refer to the chart and write the lesson based on what it says is up next. one of the things that i decided to do was a "Name of God" series, so that over two years, our students will learn about 6 different names of God that are used in the Bible...why & how they're used, and what they tell us about our faith walk. so this Sunday coming up, we're doing "Lamb of God", as it is especially appropriate in relation to Easter and Christ's sacrifice. so all day today i've been researching "Lamb" in the Bible, and i thought i'd throw down some of my thoughts for my dLog entry tonight...

"sheep/lamb/shepherd"...all themes that appear a lot in the Bible. "Lamb" itself shows up some 190 times. Yet, it's a little more difficult for us to understand the concepts often represented by this language than it was for those who were initially reading the writings. I don't think any of us are shepherds. But an understanding of the historical context sheds a lot of light on how amazing Christ is as our Lamb. "Lamb" actually shows up 105 times in the Pentateuch alone, mostly in sacrificial references. Which is pretty significant, because it means that by the time that Christ shows up and is labeled in John chapter 1 as "the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world", that this would have intense connections for the average Jew. They would know the sacrificial history, and would have themselves sacrificed a lamb at some point during their life. Except, like the eternal water that Christ offered to the Samaritan women, he now offered himself as the eternal sacrifice...the eternal lamb.

The Israelites were a people of story. And they understood the significance of acting out important events to burn them into their hearts and minds. Which is why God commanded them to hold Passover every year...that they would remember the lamb's blood shed in their protection. And this illustrates why it is so important to us to consider Christ as the Lamb during this time. That his sacrifice is our freedom. That his death is our life. That his love is our joy. A lamb without spot or defect...the first fruits of what God had...offered for us, so that we could live as we were created to live, bringing glory and honor to our creator and shepherd.


At 8:46 AM, Blogger Ben George said...

"the first fruits of what God had"

He gave us His everything in Christ. What a powerful thought. Especially when I look at my sacrifices, tithing, or servitude. Rarely do I give my first or best, often it is what I have left over.

At 4:46 PM, Blogger Matt Wiggins said...

One other thing about Jesus and lambs . . . Bethelehem was where the lambs that were slaughtered at Passover were raised. Hmmm. Connection?

Good stuff, JD!


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