The Lamb’s Blood Covers Us
God Redeems Us to Himself
Read: 1 Peter 1
When I was a little girl, I went to a friend’s house for a sleepover. She lived just down the road from my house, down a long lane in the country. As we played together, a tornado warning sounded on the radio. Her mother said, “Children, go down to the basement. There is a tornado spotted in the area.” We scrambled down her basement steps as her mother brought the radio with her. She went upstairs to see if she could see the twister and then returned periodically to reassure us that we were safe. The rain and hail beat down on the roof and windows from the darkened sky. Finally, after a while, we received the “All Clear” signal. Later, after I went home the next day, I learned that a tornado tore through our area, turning over an old caboose an elderly couple lived in as a trailer. They weren’t even a mile away from my house. The tornado bounced from there over my home and my friend’s. It was as if a protective hand lay over us, protecting us.
Later, as an adult, a tornado warning sirens screamed near us as my pastor-husband taught Bible study at our church that evening. Our whole family and our next-door neighbor were part of the group. We helped everyone get to the basement safely and resumed our study and prayer time, listening for a tornado. The rain and hail beat down on the roof and windows from the darkened sky. When the all-clear sounded, everyone headed home, concerned about what we might find.
Our neighbor was worried about his grandparents’ welfare, who lived on the other side of our duplex. When we drove up to our darkened neighborhood, getting in with work crews for the electric and emergency personnel was difficult. We circled our community until we met a police officer who allowed us to enter with caution. When our neighbor went inside his apartment with a flashlight, he found them shaken but safe. Our duplex was untouched, but the houses behind us had trees uprooted and serious roof damage. The tornado bounced from the street just behind our home, landed a few miles away in the small city where I worked, and wreaked havoc on many businesses there. It seemed like an invisible hand prevented the tornado from devastating our home with our neighbor’s grandparents inside.
Just as we felt protected from danger, the Israelites found themselves in danger. In Exodus 12:1-13, Moses instructed them to prepare to leave their homes in Egypt quickly. So much so that they had their bread dough, without yeast, sitting in a bowl to take with them. They also had to prepare a lamb for a meal and then spread the blood on their doorposts. They were prepared to leave quickly. When the destroying angel came through to kill all the firstborn sons in Egypt, he would pass over those with blood on the doorposts. God’s people were passed over by the danger sent to judge Egypt. He preserved them because of their faithful obedience.
This scene runs in the background of Israel’s history for today’s passage. The believers of the early church during the writing of 1 Peter had begun facing persecution by Emperor Nero. God was giving the “elect,” these Christians, specific divine protection during such a stressful time for the church. They have an eternal inheritance, a hope that never fades or perishes, preserved in Heaven by God, the Father. The salvation to come for them will be revealed in the last time.
Their suffering will be for a short time in the present and must happen. The pagan community around them disliked Christians. God says these believers will be refined through the fire with the impurities removed, refined like gold. Faith is more valuable than gold because it lasts and is imperishable.
Let’s drop down to verses 15 through 21. God called them to be holy—set apart—as Jesus is Holy. This means they should not live like their pagan neighbors but are called to live a higher calling. They’ve been redeemed by the precious blood of Jesus, the Lamb without blemish, the perfect Lamb of God. God raised Jesus to glory, so their faith and hope remain in God. Peter alludes to the change from a perishable body to an imperishable one that lives on in eternity.
Jesus was identified by His cousin, John, as the Lamb who takes away the world’s sins (John 1:29, 36). And we see in Revelation 7:14, 17 that Jesus is the Lamb of God who washed the saints’ garments from the great tribulation white with His blood. He will lead them to living waters and wipe away every tear from their eyes. Believers’ names are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life will spend eternity in the presence of God and the Lamb (Revelation 21:22-24, 22:3).
Our times are turbulent for sure, and Christians today face social pressures to keep our faith quiet. In other countries, however, many are dying martyrs’ deaths from heavy persecution. Yet we can trust God’s Word that we are under pressure, but we should remain pure, set apart, and holy. We must protect our minds from the lies of this world. The trials and tribulations we face, and will encounter later, are intended to refine us to greater purity. Although the Lamb’s blood on the Israelites’ doorposts prevented their oldest child’s destruction, we aren’t always protected from physical harm. It is by His good will for some Christians to be protected who still have work He wants them to do here, while others will be rewarded ahead of them in God’s presence for eternity. Some believers have endured tremendous persecution to death and will come out of the great tribulation, those who are made spotless by the Lamb’s blood. The Lamb of God shed His blood for us, preserving us for eternal glory, passing us through judgment as clean. Our future destination is in New Jerusalem with God and Jesus, the Lamb, where nothing bad will enter in. We have a blessed hope that will never fade. God redeems us to Himself by the cleansing blood of the Lamb, Jesus.
Putting Faith into Practice
Consider the times God has protected you. Write them down, and place these memories in your physical Bible, or another safe place where you can read them over when you feel the world’s pressures bear down on you. Place verses that stand out to you from our study today along with them, to remind you of your future hope and glory. Give thanks to God whenever you read them.