Sunday, September 16, 2018

The Sacrificial Lamb of the Lord

Today's Reading:
  • Luke 22:14 -22:53
Read Bible Passages Online

Luke 22:14- 22:53
Today's reading starts with the last supper and ends with Jesus being arrested. The first thing that struck me today was the powerful circle that was so carefully constructed by the Lord. Jesus and the disciples were celebrating Passover for the last supper. Passover occurred during the time of the Israelites' slavery in Egypt. In the final and most terrible plague of all, the Lord ordered that all firstborn sons throughout the land be killed. The Israelites, however, were told to smear lamb's blood over their doorways to avoid that plague. The angel of death passed over every house that had been sanctified with the blood of the lamb.

Jesus and his disciples celebrated Passover on the same night that Jesus was betrayed and arrested. Jesus laid the foundation for what would later be known to us as communion - a special, dedicated and holy breaking of bread and drinking of wine to be done in remembrance of the Lord. The bread was the body that was broken, and the wine was the blood that was spilled. This was all given to us so that we would have our truly deserved fates passed over, so that we could be washed in the sacrificial blood of the lamb. The parallels to Passover are awe-inspiring when you truly realize them for the first time, when you realize that events that took place thousands of years before were so beautifully woven together. God is the ultimate planner. God has a plan for each and every one of us. And nothing about that plan might ever seem to make sense when it is happening, but every step of the way has a purpose. A carefully crafted purpose.

Here's the kicker about God's plans - we have to let him use us to execute them. Later that night, after the Passover supper, before Jesus was betrayed, he was at the Mount of Olives. There he was praying fervently to the Lord. Verse 22:44 said that he was pouring sweat like great drops of blood upon the ground - that's how strongly he communing with the Lord. Jesus was praying that the cup of suffering be taken from him. Jesus knew what was in store for him. Jesus knew he was to be a human sacrifice. Jesus knew it was going to be terrible. Jesus was probably terrified. Jesus was 100% God and 100% man, and any man would be terrified of an impending terrible death.

Jesus, however, did not sin. He was torn up, he was anxious, he was scared, but through it all he prayed his famous words: "Yet I want your will to be done, not mine" (22:42). Even amidst the most difficult command that God had ever given him, Jesus recognized that God had a plan, and that Jesus was an integral part of that plan. Jesus fought back every inch of his flesh and surrendered completely to God's will and God's plan. And look what they accomplished together! Salvation for billions of people! A chance to be washed in the sacrificial blood of Jesus Christ. To be washed free of all our sins. To become holy in the sight of the Lord. To no longer be separated by a veil. To invite the Holy Spirit to dwell within our hearts.  All of that is the result of a God who can craft the most masterful plan. So trust in the Lord when He has a plan for you. Pray that you not give into temptation. Pray that His will be done, so that the Lord can make the most beautiful thing out of your own life.

No comments: