Sunday 24 August 2014
Speaker: Pastor Austen Ukachi
Key Passages: “Now the blood shall be a sign for you on the houses where you are. And when I see the blood, I will pass over you; and the plague shall not be on you to destroy you when I strike the land of Egypt” (Exodus 12:13)
“But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed” (Isaiah 53:5)
“That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias the prophet, saying, Himself took our infirmities, and bare our sicknesses” (Matthew 8:17 KJV)
As the Ebola scourge continues to ravage many people, we must remind ourselves of the scriptural provisions God has put in place for our protection. As long as the epidemic remains a threat to the nation, we must not relent in our prayers against the scourge. Resolute faith in God and his word is an indispensable spiritual weapon for fighting the dreaded epidemic. We must remind ourselves that God is our ultimate healer.
Another weapon we have in this fight against the Ebola pestilence is the blood of Jesus. If the saints of old overcame through the power of the blood, then we also must overcome through the blood of Jesus. Let me say, that the blood of Jesus is not a magic wand, but a strong weapon we must anchor our faith in.
In Exodus12:13, the Bible says the blood of the lamb was a sign to the children of Israel. A sign is a pointer to something significant; it serves as a memorial or reminder. The blood of lambs in the Old Testament pointed to the blood of Jesus, our Passover Lamb through which we have obtained our justification, redemption and sanctification. A sign could also be a symbol of protection and assurance. Thirdly, a sign points to a covenant relationship, a divine commitment to protect and preserve the weaker partner.
In the Bible we observe that God gave his people signs at different points in time:
- The blood was a sign given to the children of Israel of God’s protection from the destroyer (Exodus 12:12-13, 21-30)
- God’s distinction between the children of Israel and the Egyptians was a sign to them in Egypt (Exodus 8:22-23)
- The rainbow was given as a sign to Noah’s generation after the flood (Genesis 9:12-17)
- The command to circumcise all male children was given to Abraham as a sign of God’s covenant with him (Genesis17:7-11)
- The coming of Jesus is a sign to this generation (Isaiah 7:10-14)
All these signs remind us of significant events in God’s relationship with his people
THE BLOOD IS POWERFUL AGAINST DISEASES IN VARIOUS WAYS
The blood protects (Exodus12:13). Why was the blood of lambs used to protect Israel in Egypt? God could have protected his people in Egypt with something else other than blood. After all in Exodus 8:20-24, he protected his people without the blood. But this time in Exodus 12:13, 21-30, he chose to insulate them with the blood in order to make a point. The fact is that the blood of the lamb in Exodus 12:13 pointed to Jesus the Passover Lamb of God. If the blood of a lamb availed for the children of Israel in Egypt against the destruction of a plague, then the blood of Jesus the Passover lamb can avail for us against any pestilence. The blood of Jesus is powerful because it pleads for mercy, it pleads forgiveness, it brings about peace, it brings reconciliation and pardon on behalf of sinners and transgressors.
In Joshua 2:12-24, we notice that when Rehab requested for protection for her family, she was asked to tie a scarlet thread on her window by the spies whom Joshua sent to spy our Jericho. That scarlet tread was symbolic of the covering and protection the blood of Jesus offers to us.
The blood of lambs atoned for the sins of Israel (Exodus 30:10). Once every year the High Priest made sacrifice on behalf of Israel on the Day of Atonement. The sacrifice pointed to the Lord Jesus whose blood atones for our sins.
The blood liberates (Zechariah 9:11). In the Old Testament covenants were sealed with the blood. Because of God’s covenant with us we are promised in Zechariah 9:11 to be delivered from the “waterless pit”.
The blood of Jesus secures pardon for our sins (Hebrews 9:7).
The blood cleanses us from sin (Hebrews 9:22). Jesus shed his blood for our sins and redemption.
In Revelation 12:7-12, we see another use of the blood: it is used in warfare. The angels overcame by the blood of the lamb.
We must recognise that the blood of Jesus is no less potent and powerful now than it was in the past. Therefore, in this time of emergency, when Ebola is on the rampage, we must resort to appealing to the prevailing power of the blood of Jesus Christ over the plagues and pestilences of our age.
..And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb..