April 17, 2014

Holy Week: The True Lamb of God

Sometime, well into the night of Thursday of Holy Week, the Savior was arrested in the Garden of Gethsemane, brought in chains down through the Kidrom Valley, and then up to the upper city to the home of the high priest. The time is not recorded, but it is most likely sometime between 2-4 AM in the morning. At this point Jesus has been awake for at least 20 hours, and will not sleep again. To this point He has prepared for the Passover, had his Last Supper with his disciples, suffered in Gethsemane, and then has been arrested by an angry mob. To say He is exahausted is putting it mildly.

The scene of Jesus before the high priest and the Sanhedrin is a vivid image. Here the true High Priest (Jesus) stands before the earthly established high priest Caiaphas. This same High Priest was in charge of all temple activity, in particular to this week of Passover was the choosing and judging of the lambs to be slaughtered for the Passover Feast. Each lamb had to be brought to the priest (which was overseen by the high priest Caiaphas) to be inspected so as to ensure that the lamb was "without blemish." How ironic that the True Lamb of God, who would be slain for the sins of the world, was now being judged by this same high priest, who for days now has been judging to determine if literally thousands of lambs were without blemish.

Now before Caiaphas stood the True Lamb, who prior to being scarified, was subject to that same law that prescribed the election of lambs for Passover. Yet, though He was truly the "unspotted lamb," He was judged as being spotted. Though He was the very One who gave the Law of Moses, He was now subject to His own law under the hands of wicked men.

What great self-control Jesus showed. Here was true humility. He who was the Creator of mankind, now was mocked, spat upon, and buffeted by His very creations. Yet the scriptures state that He held His peace. When most men would revile against false accusations, Jesus held back. He knew that this was required so that we might be freed from spiritual bondage. For our sakes He was bruised and scorned.

How grateful I am that during all of these false accusations, Jesus did not think of Himself, but of us. How grateful I am that He went through what He did so that I might have life eternal. How grateful I am for the True Lamb of God, who on this night was judged of man as spotted, though He was perfectly unspotted in every way.

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