The Lamb

24 02 2012

It was a snapshot moment. I drove past a lush green field. Wooly sheep covered the landscape. Playing near its mother, a young lamb took tentative steps. It was like something out of a storybook. The lamb was perfect –fresh, snowy white, and innocent.

Lambs hold a special place in the story of God. From the earliest days, lambs were the animals sacrificed for sin. Their blood was spilled in the place of the life of the sinner. Shed on altars meant to direct hearts in worship and dedication, the lamb became the substitute. God’s mercy flowed like a river as the lamb’s blood covered the altar.

Sheep also hold a special picture of our relationship with God. We are the sheep of His pasture. He cares for us, protects us, nurtures us, loves us, and guides us to the places where we will flourish and grow. We live under the Shepherd’s tender care, watchful eye, and protective heart. We learn to listen to His voice, answer His call, and live in the shadow of His presence.

The most amazing portrait comes together when these two pictures merge. The Shepherd became a sheep in order to be our substitute. Jesus wrapped Himself in the skin of a man in order to live among the sheep. He slept where we slept, walked where we walked, ate what we ate, and experienced life as we live it. He showed us how to extend grace, walk in mercy, love without reservation, and live fully in the kingdom of God.

John the Baptizer looked at Jesus and proclaimed, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29). The cross was never far from Jesus’ mind. He came to be your substitute. He came to take your place on the altar of sacrifice. He came to pay for your sin. He came to shed His blood so that you might have life.

My Jesus Resolution today is to bow before the Lamb. That is what those in heaven are doing right now. Worship, honor, glory, and praise belong to Him because of who He is and what He has done for me. But I want to remember the picture in the field. The perfect lamb, white, fresh, and innocent taking steps on wobbly legs so that He can say, “I understand. I have been there. Live in my shadow. Walk with me.”


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