On the very same night the Lord promised to strike dead every firstborn male in Egypt, he first gave Moses and Aaron instructions on how to protect the community of Israel.
“Slaughter a year old lamb without defect,” said the Lord, “and take some of the blood
and put it on the sides and tops of the door frames, of the houses where they eat the lambs.” Exod. 12:7
“The blood shall be a sign for you on the houses where you live;
and when I see the blood I will pass over you,
and no plague will befall you to destroy you when I strike the land of Egypt.” Exod. 12:13
As the Hebrews huddled inside their dusty cramped homes, loud wailing and shrieks of heartbreak shattered the night, as the Lord struck down all of the firstborn throughout the land of Egypt. On the black night the Lord brought judgement down on all the false gods of Egypt, the blood of the lamb was the sacred and mysterious key to the miraculous protection of the Israelites.
From that day forth, God commanded the Jews to commemorate that day, the day of the Passover sacrifice to the Lord; and to pass the knowledge of the Holy One, on down to their children, for all generations to come. Exod. 12: 26, 27
Both the early Christians, most of whom were Hebrews, as well as Christians today, relate the sacrifice of the lamb to Christ’s sacrifice on the cross. On a deep spiritual level, we discern the connection between the Passover festival, which commemorates the liberation of the Hebrews from their slavery, with our freedom from the second death, represented by the Resurrection.
Isn’t it glorious the way John the Baptist referred to Jesus as “The Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world?” John 1:29 Isn’t it amazing that during exactly the same time that the Jewish priest was putting to death a lamb without blemish for the temple sacrifice, Jesus, the Lamb of God was being crucified on the cross?
This Easter, I challenge you to make your celebration feast more meaningful. Try starting a food tradition using a delicious lamb recipe that requires special preparation. Retell bible stories about the Lamb of God to your children. Together with your family, commit to memorizing scripture verses that speak of the Passover and the holy resurrection of Christ. If you are blessed with a deacon, elder or mature Christian at your gathering, consider holding communion in your home. Most of all, when you gather at the table, center your prayers and worship on the sweet Lamb of God.