God's Great Lesson on Love and Sacrifice.
And it came to pass after these things, that God did tempt Abraham, and said unto
him, Abraham: and he said, Behold, here I am.  And he said, Take now thy son,
thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer
him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.
Abraham had another son but Isaac was his "only" that's how the Hebrew
puts it. Literally, the Hebrew reads, "Take your son, your only, whom you
" God is going to "test" Abraham. I really do not think that God
had some reservations about Abraham's faithfulness. No. The fact was that, according to
the New Testament book of Hebrews this was to be an object lesson on the Lamb of God.
God's word does not mention any feelings on Abraham's part the test was this
I believe that the heart of Abraham ached at the thought of having to kill his
"only." Yet as the New Testament account has it, Abraham's faith "kicked
in" and he obeyed God's apparently outrageous command believing that He could raise
Isaac from the dead. Thus, we have a wonderful lesson of Christ becoming our substitution
for the penalty of our sins.
I think there is another lesson for us here about the Father's love for his Son. As the
knife of Abraham is poised above the breast of his "only," we have at that
moment in time a snapshot of God's love for His Son and his willingness to send his
"only" to the cross for you and me
The lesson of the Father's great love for his Son and the lesson for Christ's
role as the Pascal Lamb certainly comes into view. At once we have the tremendous moment
of love and substitution coming to one focal point in history. Abraham's love his
"only" the ram caught in the thicket becoming the substitute all
at once. Surely we cannot escape Abraham's great love for his son but, at the same time
his willingness to sacrifice his "only" and the fact that the ram was
slain as substitute. What a glorious image of the sacrificial Lamb of God and the Beloved
Jesus States The Oneness The Father And The Son.
John 14:10-11 "Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father is in
Me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on My own initiative, but the Father
abiding in Me does His works.  "Believe Me that I am in the Father, and
the Father in Me; otherwise believe on account of the works themselves. (NAS).
We need to focus on one word in this statement of Jesus to bring the whole into focus.
Look at the word "abiding" here and "dwelleth" in the KJV. The word
used here is not the one that one would use for being physically within something, or in
this case, someone but suggests relationship. The oneness here is of the heart the
oneness of purpose, of living "
in perpetual union of purpose and will with the
." This infinite oneness between the Father and the Son never wavered
even on the cross while Jesus was crying in a loud voice "My God, My God, why hast
thou forsaken me
" At that moment the love between the Father and the Son was of
enormous intensity and was communicated for Jesus had, in His agony recited the
very Psalm that reflected his feelings of the moment and yet testified of his trust in his
Jesus the Lamb of God was to be sacrificed yes but just as Abraham's
heart must have raced with intensity so there was a divine intensity of love
between the Father and the Son while Jesus was dying on the cross for you and me.
Jesus, The Lamb Of God Was Not
Selected By Man But By God Himself.
Who hath believed our report? and to whom is the arm of the LORD revealed?  For
he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath
no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should
desire him.  He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and
acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we
esteemed him not. (Isaiah 53:1-3)
Actually Jesus was in the end rejected by his people. Even the disciples who were
walking to Emmaus expressed some doubt about Jesus being the one "
have redeemed Israel
" and was convinced only after Jesus in his
post-resurrection ministry explained to them from the Old Testament scriptures how that
the messiah had to first suffer the cross before becoming the conquering redeemer.
Certainly, we see that John was right when he said that his own didn't receive him. That
fact was the Jews of the day wanted political freedom but had no longer any need of a
savior the truth of the Pascal Lamb of God had long become a dusty old tradition
that was part of their culture but certainly not their personal lives or relationship with
No. The Father and the Father alone chose Jesus as the Lamb of God. Read on.
The Suffering Lamb Of God.
"Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him
stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. Isa 53:4
The first half of this verse is God's viewpoint Jesus indeed, as the Lamb of God
did bear our griefs and sorrows. The original for the word "borne" is used in
many other passages as related to a person assuming the guilt of sin. The point is
abundantly clear that the whole concept of Jesus Christ being the Lamb of God was wholly
God's idea not man's. The second half of this passage is man's point of view. Rather than
assuming that Jesus was assuming the guilt of our sins we as mankind assumed that
He was being judged by the law and by God (else why didn't He rescue His Son?). In the
centuries old Feast of Passover the lamb was selected by special ritual and specification
but, alas, it had become merely a ritual. There was no longer the reality of the Pascal
Lamb dying for the sins of Israel.
But He was pierced through for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities;
The chastening for our well-being fell upon Him, And by His scourging we are healed. (Isaiah
Jesus was pierced through (wounded) for our transgressions. This is a horrible picture
of the agony of Christ on the cross. The Hebrew for being pierced through carries more
than the meaning of being mortally wounded. It means to be utterly defiled
to die a shameful death. The piercing the wounding is only the outward evidence of
much more. Other passages refer to shame. Being pierced through would be the same thing
as having one's reputation completely ruined by being falsely accused for a crime and then
in a national spectacle dying for that crime.
Jesus was "crushed for our iniquities." Other passages in the Old
Testament using this word refers to a nation that has been utterly vanquished. This is in
reference to the mental condition of Jesus Christ while on the cross. His suffering was
certainly a horrible physical suffering but that isn't the whole story. He suffered mental
anguish beyond any human experience. I have often said that Jesus suffered the mental
agony of hell for all of us I still stand by that statement.
Jesus was "chastised for our well-being." This refers to the punishment
aspect of God's judging Christ in our place. Because Jesus was disciplined, we may live in
a sense of freedom from the guilt of our sin. Our sense of well-being is directly tied to
this passage. The Lamb of God was defamed, his spirit was completely crushed and he was
punished by God the Father all instead of us.
Jesus was scourged for our health. Scourging was an skill by those who did it.
Scourging could go all the way from being whipped so that one was extremely bruised or the
Romans had learned the ancient skill of scourging so that one could be whipped so severely
that his skin could be removed and the victim was still alive. In fact, it was considered
a failure on the part of the one administering the punishment if the victim died in the
process of being whipped. The victim obviously died eventually but the skill on the part
of the one with the whip was to have him still alive after his skins was removed. This is
certainly a gross picture of Jesus receiving the horrible punishment for our sin. The
Precious Lamb of God was more than executed on the cross He experienced both the
pain of the cross and the horrible judgment of God for all our sins.
The Blood Of The Lamb Of God.
For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you
were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, 
but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.  He
was chosen before the creation of the world, but was revealed in these last times for your
sake. (1 Peter 1:18-20) (NIV).
The Word of God clearly states that without the shedding of blood there is no remission
of sins. On the day of Passover, the spotless, perfect Pascal lamb was slit at the throat,
the blood was caught in a vessel in the first Passover in Egypt was applied to the door
post and lintel of each household of Israel. As a result of this obedience Israel not only
escaped death but was delivered out of Egypt and was delivered to become a nation.
Peter makes the application to his friends and to you and me that it was this precious
blood that became the means of our redemption.
The Irony of the Lamb of God.
The Pascal Lamb was picked out from among the flock. We learned earlier that The Lamb
of God was to become man. But the name "Lamb of God" does not merely refer to
his humanity. The Son of God was chosen to be the Lamb of God before the world was
even created. God's Love for his precious Lamb did not begin at the birth of
Christ. Please take note of the dialogue between Pilate and Jesus just before his
"Pilate therefore said unto him, Art thou a king then? Jesus answered, Thou sayest
that I am a king. To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I
should bear witness unto the truth. Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice."
Jesus said this while standing bound before Pilate about to be crucified as the Lamb of
God. I take this as irony just as was the irony of the placard that was placed
above his head on the cross.
"And a superscription also was written over him in letters of Greek, and Latin,
and Hebrew, THIS IS THE KING OF THE JEWS." (Luke 23:38)
Actually, the question was in reference to his being a king. I think the Holy Spirit
has introduced an irony in the dialogue the irony of Jesus at once being the Lamb
of God apparently bound and helpless and being the king not only of the Jews but of all
kings having complete sovereignty over his whole creation including his certain
death on the cross. The irony continues on in Revelation 5:6. Let's keep reading.
"And I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of the throne and of the four beasts, and in
the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as it had been slain, having seven horns and seven
eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth."
At one hand we have "a Lamb as it had been slain." On the other hand the
prophesy refers to Jesus Christ as "
in the midst of the throne and of the
four beasts, and in the midst of the elders
There is, of course, no irony because this is the great plan of redemption coming to a
focal point and the Word of God is merely pointing out to man what seems to be totally
enigmatic. But from the point of redemption's view this is the natural course
of events before Jesus would assume the role of King of Kings he first had to
assume the role of the Pascal Lamb of God and become the sacrifice for the sins of the
So there we have it Jesus was the spotless Lamb of God, the Beloved Lamb of God,
He was "hand-picked" by God Himself to be the Lamb of God and finally today He
is Suffering and dying Lamb of God. Next time we study quite a different presentation of
the Lamb of God.
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