Our female standard poodle’s health plummeted one weekend. She was gone before noon on Monday. Each person and pet draw out different aspects of our personalities. Cosette’s joy over simple activities made every day a party. We not only missed her, but we also missed who we were in her presence.
A week later, Max, our male dog, realized his girl was not coming home. His grief threw him into a health crisis. He fought for his life while connected to IVs. He pulled through but seemed 10 years older.
That Friday, Raleigh received an unexpected snow. My husband came home early. “We need a different spirit in this house. Let’s look at puppies.”
Three vet visits and an X-ray showed what my vet called bone OCD in his right shoulder. Two vets said surgery should heal him; two others recommended exchanging him for a healthy puppy. It could signal future problems.
The coronavirus quarantine began, and our economy plummeted. It didn’t seem wise to venture into a medical journey with unknown costs. We agonized over whether to keep or return our joy-boy.
Caring for a Lamb
As I pictured returning the puppy we’d connected with in such a short time, I wondered if Passover brought the Hebrews the pain we felt. God required each family to bring the Passover lamb into their household and tend it the week before it died.
“On the tenth day of this month each family must choose a lamb or a young goat for a sacrifice, one animal for each household. … The animal you select must be a one-year-old male, either a sheep or a goat, with no defects. …Take special care of this chosen animal until the evening of the fourteenth day of this first month. Then the whole assembly of the community of Israel must slaughter their lamb or young goat at twilight” (Ex. 12:3, 5-6 NLT).
Caring for our injured puppy increased our attachment to him. Why would God have the families connect to the lamb they would lose?Caring for our injured puppy increased our attachment to him. Why would God have the families connect to the lamb they would lose? #Easter Click To Tweet
The First Passover
The first Passover took place in Egypt while the Israelites were slaves. Passover became an annual celebration to commemorate the night the death angel passed over each Hebrew home that bore lamb’s blood on their door frames. However, “there was loud wailing in Egypt, for there was not a house without someone dead” (Ex. 12:30 NIV).
Someone died in every household that night—either a lamb or a son. Each lamb’s death was personal to someone.
In that light, having each Hebrew family emotionally connect with the lamb that would take their firstborn’s place seems fitting. Lessons that touch the heart resonate more than ones that simply instruct the head.Lessons that touch the heart resonate more than ones that simply instruct the head. #RefreshingFaith #Easter Click To Tweet
The Perfect Lamb of God
When John the Baptist pointed to Jesus and said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29), his Jewish audience understood. This was the long-awaited One. All of those Passover lambs through the centuries had pointed to Jesus, the perfect Lamb of God that would take their place.
Rabbi Jonathan Cahn says God’s lamb, Jesus, entered Jerusalem on Palm Sunday, the very day the Jews led the Passover lambs to their houses.
- It took the death of lambs to save Israel’s firstborns from death.
- It took the death of God’s Lamb—His only Son—to free us from sin and save us from eternal death.
On Good Friday, the Lamb of God died for you and me. As in Egypt so long ago, a Lamb has offered His blood so that we might live. We either receive His sacrifice by faith and live eternally or, like the Egyptians under Pharaoh, we will die for our sins. Jesus’ death is personal to the one saved by Him.Jesus' death is personal to the one saved by Him. #Easter, #GoodFriday Click To Tweet
Wrestling over the possibility of losing our puppy gave me a new appreciation for the Lamb of God. Surgery restored his ability to race, leap, and prance with delight. We’re so thankful.
Jesus made the ultimate sacrifice for you and me (Is. 53: 2-8). Because He did, we can live unshackled by sin with hope for tomorrow and joy for today. Hallelujah, what a Savior!
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Free this week, The Fellowship of Performing Arts is presenting “Easter Passion.” Pairing Mark’s Gospel account with beautiful music makes this is a moving Easter treat.