A Lamb without Blemish

Tell the whole community of Israel that on the tenth day of this month each man is to take a lamb for his family, one for each household…. The animals you choose must be year-old males without defect Ex 12:3,5
he must bring to the LORD a young bull without defect as a sin offering for the sin he has committed. Lev 4:3
God made him who had no sin to be a sin offering for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. 2 Cor 5:21
We have already thought about Christ coming as a sacrifice, as the Lamb of God, but we now focus on one aspect of that so that we may wonder even more at God’s goodness to us.    There are a variety of pictures in the Old Testament history of Israel‘s life with God that say things about sacrifice.   We have already considered the Passover lamb but let’s remind ourselves that the requirement for the lamb was that it was ‘without defect’.   Similarly in the Law of Moses, in Leviticus, in chapter 4, wherever an animal was to be a substitute for sin,  i.e. a ‘sin offering’, whether it was a bull (v.3,14), a goat (v.23,28) or a lamb (v.32), each creature was to be ‘without defect’.
Why ‘without defect’? Well possibly for various reasons. The first reason would be so that the giving of this lamb for God’s purposes would not be done casually.  The owner would have to take care in choosing.
The second reason is that having taken care, he now has to commit his very best to the Lord. (Cain was chided for being casual with his offering – Gen 4:3-5).
The third reason is that this sacrifice has no need to be put to death – there is nothing defective about it that should warrant its death.
Fourthly, there is a sense whereby we might say that it had no sin to deserve its death and so its perfection highlights the awfulness of what is happening to it – a totally blameless creature is taking the sin of completely guilty people.
Now, if you look at these reasons and apply them to Jesus, you see something wonderful. His coming as The Lamb was carefully decided in heaven, the very best that heaven could commit to the task, and there was nothing about him that was defective, nothing that warranted his death.   Heb 7:26 tells us that Jesus was ‘holy, blameless, pure.’   Peter tells us that he came as this lamb, ‘without blemish or defect’ (1 Pet 1:19 ).   What point are we making?   That you and I were redeemed by a perfect being.   He didn’t deserve it, but we did.    The one who stepped into your ‘condemned cell’ was utterly perfect.   If you imagined him as a cup, he was empty of sin, so would take all your sin, every single drop of it.   There was no element of your sin that he didn’t die for.
Lord, I am beginning to realise the completeness of what Jesus did. There is no sin of mine that hasn’t been taken by him. I am utterly cleansed. Thank you so much!

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