Have you ever considered how the doorposts of our homes hold great value to each of us? Many goodbye’s and hello’s take place from the doorposts of our homes. Our doorposts are the entry to our privacy.The Biblical Hebrew culture holds even greater symbolism and tradition relating to doorposts. Public declarations, contracts, prayers, and so much more take place from the doorposts of an Israelite family’s home. So, when the Lord told them to slaughter a lamb and put the blood of that lamb on their doorposts, it would not have been as strange to them as it sounds to us. Keep in mind, the Israelites have now experienced 9 plague phenomenons, so this command to put blood on their doorposts must have really set them on edge in regard to what’s next. I hope you didn’t get lost in the ritual and rules while reading Exodus chapter 12 today. I hope today’s devotion will bring about the personal impact that God intended for us to learn when He asked the Israelites to cover their doorposts with the blood of a lamb.
I desire to meet Moses someday and ask him all about this night when death passed over the homes with blood on their doorposts, yet entered the homes, and killed all the first born sons, of those who didn’t have blood on their doorposts. I can’t wait to hear the first hand account of what must have been a terrifying night. I want you to fully understand how God used this night to reveal 1. Who He is, and 2. how He works.
- WHO: Understand that God IS integrity. I didn’t say God has integrity. Understand the difference of having integrity and literally being integrity. God IS integrity, therefore, if God breaks any of His own laws, He can’t be God. I ask you to understand this because God created, what I call, His foundational laws. They are recorded in Leviticus 17:11. My shorthand version of these laws go like this; Life is in the blood, and blood must be shed to receive forgiveness of sins. Remember that God is integrity.
- HOW: There is one other attribute of God that is vital for our understanding Him. God is perfect and holy. This reality makes it impossible for Him to be in relationship with sin, or with anything sinning. God originally created us all, sin free. He declared us good. He also, remarkably, declares us His masterpiece of all creation. That makes us/you, His favorite of all created things! When we, starting with Adam and Eve, freely chose to break God’s laws, this brings sin into our lives, causing us to be separated from a perfect and holy God. This terrible reality forced a great dilemma upon God. Remember, God must honor His own laws because He is integrity. So God wants to forgive us, so He can be back in relationship with us, but integrity requires that bloodshed must first take place. God has two choices in His predicament. He can kill us, and shed our own blood, to forgive us, but that would mean He would lose His relationship with His masterpiece. So, God, in the Old Testament times, chose to have us kill an animal in our place, and have that animal’s blood be the lifeblood that is shed for our forgiveness. The blood of a lamb, was God’s free gift and pathway back into a relationship with Him. The blood of a lamb, was God’s invitation to receive His protection from death. On this night, all God asked was for each family take the blood of a lamb and wipe it on the doorposts of their home. That evening, those who did as God asked, were saved from death. That evening, at Midnight, those who did not do what God asked, were visited by death, and every firstborn son and first born animal were killed in their individual homes. Exodus 12 records that there was loud wailing heard throughout the land of Egypt, for there was not a single Egyptian home where someone didn’t die. Imagine the terrifying echo that carried into each Israelite family’s quiet and dark homes. Imagine, each parent drawing their children in closely, comforting their fears, assuring their safety, and being thankful for the blood of the lamb.
Questions to answer:
- Did you notice, in this Exodus 12 recorded history, that God wasn’t concerned about what kind of people were behind the blood covered doorframes? God was only looking for the blood of the lamb on the doorframe to cause Him to save anyone who was inside that door. How does this reality help you understand who God really is? How does this relate to Jesus’s sacrifice on the cross? How do you receive the blood of the lamb, Jesus, on your life so you too can be brought back into a relationship with God?
- It became clear, at midnight on this Exodus night, that God’s saving act was a gift. That gift still required two things. FAITH in what God required for salvation, and OBEDIENCE to physically put the blood of the lamb on the doorpost. A free gift that required faith and obedience. Anybody who was saved, would never be able to brag they were saved, because all who were saved did the same thing…applied the blood of the Lamb.
- Bible Verses to Meditate on: James 2:14-26, Romans 5:8, Romans 6:23, 1 Timothy 1:15, Hebrews 9:11-28