Don’t Pass Over Jesus
“When the LORD goes through the land to strike down the Egyptians, he will see the blood on the top and sides of the doorframe and will pass over that doorway, and he will not permit the destroyer to enter your houses and strike you down.” (Ex. 12:23 NIV11)
It’s such an iconic passage. The at the end the Israelites will be walking free from Egypt. They will plunder their enemies and God will have gotten the attention of every Egyptian household by bringing death to the first born.
What are we to make of it?
Firstly, we should remember that this is the 10th plague to hit Egypt. Each time Moses and Aaron as God’s ambassadors have delivered the message that Pharaoh is to let His people go. Pharaoh has vacillated back and forth but has not let them go. How many chances should he get? This is a battle of wills and gods that the one pretending to be god and the pretend gods will lose to the God who is truly there.
“On that same night I will pass through Egypt and strike down every firstborn of both people and animals, and I will bring judgment on all the gods of Egypt. I am the LORD.” (Ex. 12:12 NIV11)
How will the Israelites be saved from the terrible destruction that will befall this nation? The answer is by faith.
By faith? Yes, really. Those who will hear God’s Word and obey will be saved. The instruction involves substitution. A death in place of a death. The plan from God is to sacrifice an unblemished sheep or goat in place of the firstborn male in the house. This blood offered in place of the other will show the destroying angel that death has already visited this place and he can quite literally ‘pass over’ this house. Salvation for Israel will come by faith through a substitute.
That brings us pretty clearly to Jesus. Peter writes:
“For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body but made alive in the Spirit.” (1 Pet. 3:18 NIV11)
Jesus is *the* pure lamb – unblemished by sin. He will shed His blood in our place. He will be killed – at the Passover – in order that the just wrath of God might pass over us – having fallen on Him.
David writes prophetically of the forgiveness that is ours in Jesus;
“Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow. Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones you have crushed rejoice. Hide your face from my sins and blot out all my iniquity. Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.” (Psa. 51:7–10 NIV11)
The Israelites were to turn this Passover miracle into a memorial meal. We have a similar one – the Lord’s Supper. A time for symbolic elements – the bread and the wine – to remind us of Jesus’s broken body and shed blood.
To understand salvation by faith we cannot pass over Jesus. This ancient account lays the foundations for the final salvation that puts us at peace with God.
Dear Heavenly Father, You are always working out Your plans. We see Father that You graciously saved Your people Israel for Your glory and our instruction. Thank You for the final and ultimate passover lamb – Your Son, our Savour Jesus Christ. We ask that we might trust Him by faith today and know the forgiveness and clean heart that You promise to all that turn to Him in repentance.