This was originally published March 29, 2015, but has been updated with the sermon after the initial event.
Yesterday my wife and I were talking about Holy Week, Passover, and sheep. Part of the whole point of God having the Jewish people keep a lamb for a week was so that they would be close to it and attached to it before they ate it. It wasn’t just going to be food, it was going to be a sacrifice. It was a memorial of the Passover.
The Passover was the greatest event in Jewish history. They were delivered from slavery and became a new nation. Part of that deliverance involved killing a lamb, putting it’s blood above the doorway to your house, and waiting.
There is a lot more in here that I’m not going to cover, but it involves the Egyptian sheep god, the fact that Egyptians thought shepherds were unclean, the other 9 plagues that came before that, etc.
But this post isn’t about Passover, really, it’s more about getting a lamb, keeping it for a week, and then killing it. It’s one thing to read about it, and to read about how living with a lamb for a week makes you attached to it, and you love it. By the end of the week, you saw something dearly loved give up it’s life for you. Throughout the week you had the constant reminder “This lamb came into my house for one purpose: to die for me.”
The lamb was supposed to be without blemish. That means that people couldn’t save the deformed, diseased, injured lambs and ‘waste’ them on the sacrifice. They had to bring their best, cared for and curated lamb. It has an effect of fasting, really. You are constantly thinking about that critter, not wanting it to get hurt, preventing injury because of the Lord. You’re not just caring for the sheep, but in your care for the sheep, you are caring for a guideline set by the Lord.
It hasn’t been 24 hours yet, and we’ve already seen some great things. As I carried that 100 lb furball over to the park to graze on some grass, my affections grew. All of my kids ‘BAAAAAH’ out the windows throughout the day and they are all jumping around chasing Sheepie(as they call her).
My wife is attached too, calling her Miss Agnes in a funny baby voice. We are all becoming attached to this lamb, just like we are supposed to.
Here is the sermon I preached after it was all over. It was the best Easter ever.