The Blood of the Lamb
Christians are impressed that it was the blood (!) Of the lamb which saved the Jews in Egypt. Well it was. But it means something quite different than the meaning that Christians have read into it. In fact the blood of the lamb represents the precise opposite of the Christian claims for Jesus. It is the Jewish rejection of Jesus together with their rejection of all idolatry that saves the Jewish people.
We must ask ourselves. What did the blood mean to the Jews in Egypt? Why was the blood meaningful to God? And how did it save the Jewish people?
Answer: The Egyptians venerated the lamb. They couldn’t associate with anyone who herded sheep for the purpose of eating them (Genesis 43:32, 46:34, Exodus 8:22). For the Jew to slaughter the lamb it was an act of faith. Not in the lamb; but of faith in God. It takes courage to be different. First the Jew had to disengage from the Egyptian influence in his own mind, and then the Jew had to overcome his fear of the local population which would not take lightly to his slaughtering of their object of veneration. But if God commands, the Jew obeys. And God in His infinite mercy rewards our obedience even though it belongs to Him before we gave it to Him.
The blood of the lamb on the doorpost was a statement. The blood was a declaration that when you pass this doorpost you will no longer be in Egypt. Perhaps the geographical address is still Egypt, but the ideological location is far removed from Egypt. The blood on the doorpost proclaims that the people in this house have faith in God and in God alone. The destroying angel went through Egypt, but the homes with the blood were not “Egypt”.
So that’s the Passover lamb.
Today it is the Jew’s Mezuza that is the symbolic equivalent of the blood of the lamb. Wherever you see the Mezuza on the doorpost you can be sure they don’t worship the lamb in there. The Jewish home remains a bastion to faith in God and loyalty to His Law despite all of the extreme pressures that the worshipers of the lamb brought to bear in an effort to get the Jew to abandon his faith in God.
Ultimately, our rejection of the idolatrous influences of the nations around us will pay off. Those who hope to God, trust in Him, and in Him alone, will not be shamed (Isaiah 49:23).
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Yisroel C. Blumenthal