Rev. Steven Blair is the Congregational Care pastor overseeing Celebrate Recovery and Live Well Ministries
The Lamb of God aka ‘Leaving Egypt’
WEDNESDAY 2.29.12 John 1:29-37
There are words that refer to historical events that have become bigger than the historical events themselves. These words refer to a more frequent human occurrence that is symbolized in that main event. You have heard the terms Crossing the Rubicon (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rubicon) , referring to the point of no return or a someone’s personal Waterloo as the location of their defeat. The Bible has another one.
For today’s purposes, we are specifically looking at the idea of Leaving Egypt. Egypt was the location of the Jewish people’s 430 years of slavery. It is the location of their anguish and their tears. It is also the location of their salvation. From Egypt, God heard their cries (Exodus 3) and brought them into the Promised Land, albeit through a 40 year trek. The last night of their enslavement included the spreading of lamb’s blood upon the doorposts of Jewish homes to protect them from the 10th Plague: Death. Through the blood of the Lamb, the Jewish people were rescued from their Egypt and brought into God’s preferred future for them.
Fast Forward to back then.
In Jesus’ Day, the Jewish people are highly taxed and often brutally treated by the Romans. It was a type of an Egypt. One form of rescue looked like the Jewish people being released from the physical realm of the Roman rule. It is a valid form of liberation that we too can pray for and work for to benefit anyone else in a socio-political Egypt. This is a point that needed to be included briefly here while focusing on John’s main message. The Gospel of John focuses more on the internal Egypt.
The internal Egypt is the location by which we are enslaved to a way of thinking and acting that adds hardship upon us. It is a ruthless set of messages claiming that we are lower than other people. It has every bit of terror and damage as a physical Egypt with our own thoughts serving as the taskmasters. John the Baptist knew of this Egypt. He knew of God’s desires to free people from enslavement wherever it is found. John knew these two truths and then found these two truths rolled up into the person of Jesus when he claimed “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!
Fast forward to today.
It is as if John was saying:
“Look, those who are captivated by our own wrong doings….”
“Look, those who are sitting in the mess of our past….”
“Look, those who are calling out from your own Egypts, desperate for a new life….”
“…. There is another lamb. God is doing it again.”
God has sent another lamb to bring the people out of their own Egypts through the forgiveness of sins.
Our question is:
Do we believe Jesus is the Lamb of God?
“Do we decide to confess our sins, receive forgive and follow him?
“Do we want to leave Egypt?”
Pastor of Celebrate Recovery www.cor.org/celebraterecovery
(A Ministry Helping People to Leave Egypt)