by John Simon
The next day, he saw Jesus coming to him, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! “
Those familiar with the Old Testament and specifically the Israelites’ sacrificial system understand today’s verse and why John the Baptist applied this title to the Messiah.
The Lord implemented animal sacrifices as an object lesson that foreshadowed Jesus’ death on the cross. Sheep, goats, bulls, and other creatures filled their temporary purpose, but only the Son of God and man could truly take away our sins.
There is a saying that a picture is worth a thousand words. Many times, a Hebrew word is also worth many words. An Israelite, upon bringing a sacrifice to the altar, would lay hands on the sacrificial animal’s head. This was not a casual ceremony.
The Hebrew term conveys that the person pushed heavily upon the animal. An innocent creature bore a lot of pressure on behalf of a guilty citizen, but this pales in comparison to the reality to which this ritual pointed.
Considering how much of a burden our sins put on Jesus Christ can be sobering. However, we can also find great encouragement. The animals did not have a say in their involvement, but our Savior willfully and lovingly took our sins upon Himself, thus restoring us from death to life and setting us free.
This is amazing grace!
Dear Heavenly Father,
Thank You so much for taking the immeasurable weight of my sins upon Your head and shoulders.
Please help me to delight in walking in Your ways.
In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.