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A Lamb for an Ass
Throughout the Mosaic dispensation, every day in the Jewish nation opened and closed with the sacrifice of a lamb. A lamb was offered upon GodŐs altar at the door of the tabernacle every morning to begin the day; and another lamb was sacrificed every evening to conclude it.
The Meeting Place
The Lord God said, ŇI will meet you to speak there unto theeÓ (Exodus 29:42). The lamb sacrificed was the place of meeting. God came to his people and his people came to him by a sacrificed lamb. There was no other way for the two to come together. If God came to man, it was by a lamb sacrificed. If man came to God, it was by a lamb sacrificed. That lamb sacrificed was given to the children of Israel for a token, a sign upon the hand that made the sacrifice and in the eyes that beheld it. And this is what the token promised, this is what the Lord God said by the sign: This is how I will dwell among you and be your God, this is how you Ňshall be sanctified by my gloryÓ (Exodus 29:38-46).
GodŐs Glory in the Lamb
According to the typical revelation of the law given in Exodus 29, sanctification was by the sacrifice of a lamb. In verse 43 we are told that it is by GodŐs glory. Does the Lord God mean for us to understand that all our salvation and all his glory is in that Lamb to whom these typical lambs pointed, the Lamb of God, Christ our Passover, the Lamb of God sacrificed for us? Indeed, he does! All our salvation and all GodŐs glory is in the Lamb of God slain for sinners.
In Exodus 13:2 the Lord God commands, ŇSanctify unto me all the firstborn, whatsoever openeth the womb among the children of Israel, both of man and of beast: it is mine.Ó But what about the unclean animals? The Lord God gave very specific command, forbidding that any unclean beast be offered to him (Leviticus 27:11). He gave two commandments that seem to contradict one another. If one is fulfilled, it would appear that the other cannot be. He demands that all the firstborn of man and beast be sanctified unto him. Yet, he also forbids offering anything that is unclean to him.
How can such a law (the law is one) be fulfilled? How can all the firstborn be sanctified to the Lord, and no unclean thing be offered to him? The Lord God himself answers that question in Exodus 34. — The ass must either be redeemed by a lamb or slain. The ass was redeemed, made clean, and accepted by God by the sacrifice of a lamb. Like the ass, fallen man is unclean and cannot be accepted by God. But the Lord God sacrificed a Lamb, his own dear Son, the Lamb of God for chosen sinners, and made the unclean altogether clean before him! This is the great wonder of grace. — Being redeemed by the precious blood of Christ, we are the sheep of God, the lambs of ChristŐs flock, made fit to sit far above principalities and powers in the heavenly places with Christ Jesus! Lost by sin through the fall, and utterly unclean, GodŐs super-abounding grace has made us utterly clean, without spot and without blame, through the sin-atoning blood of his dear Son, the Lamb of God! We, like the unclean ass, are redeemed and sanctified by his glory!