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Passover – The First

For a New Testament believer in Western culture, the whole concept of Passover can be hard to understand. Many years ago, before I learned about the types and shadows of Christ in the Old Testament, the meaning of Passover wasn’t exactly clear to me. Suffice it to say that the whole connotation of the word “Passover” for believers may bring up a fuzzy, unfamiliar picture. But the picture of Passover is too beautiful to pass up. The picture of Passover is Jesus Christ – our Passover Lamb.

Passover is a feast designed to foretell the coming of the Messiah in a physical way. Jesus Christ’s death, burial and resurrection is the first, the fulfillment and the crowning glory of this Old Covenant feast. Passover is the first time we see the Lamb of the World. We see Him through the veil of the Old Testament – disguised as a helpless lamb when, once slaughtered, the blood of which would protect God’s people from the spirit of death. Did you know that Jesus’ blood protects you from the law of sin and death? Jesus’ blood protects you from actual death. His blood protects you from death itself. Passover is the first time we see our Lamb.

We are saved by faith in Christ alone. The foremost priority of the church is to bring others to a saving knowledge of Christ. We’re called to use our gifts to issue the general call of God – salvation through Jesus Christ. We are called to share with others that when you believe in our hearts and confess with our mouth that Jesus is the Lord, and that God raised Jesus from the dead, we are saved. (Romans 10:9-10)

The concept of being justified through faith in Christ alone is not a new one, but an old one. Even before Christ was made known on the earth, faith in God and the plan He laid out for His chosen people was the key to their salvation. That’s why the Word of God says in Romans 4:3, James 2:23 and Genesis 15:6, “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness.” Abraham trusted God at His Word, therefore he was saved and justified in God’s sight.

During the first Passover, when God’s people were in slavery in Egypt, God instructed His people to sacrifice a lamb and put the blood of the lamb over every doorpost as protection from the angel of death that would be sweeping through Egypt that night. God’s people obeyed and were saved from the angel of death. Not only that – they were led out of slavery the very next day.

God’s instructions always come as a protection of some sort and there is always some form of reward for listening. We can avoid many costly mistakes by really living what we believe. James 2:18b says, “…I will show you my faith by my works.” [Emphasis mine]. Your actions reveal your true beliefs. It was in God’s people’s best interest to obey God! That same truth derived from Passover applies to us. There is protection in believing God and following His instructions.

Knowing God

When we accept Christ, our relationship and connection to God the Father is restored! He wants us to get to know Him and have relationship with Him. We get to know our Father God through times of worship, talking to Him in prayer, listening to what He has to say in His Word, and watching as His plan unfolds in history and in our lives. What an amazing privilege we have as followers of Christ to get to know the God of the universe!

God’s principles and instructions lay in His Word, the Holy Bible. The more we learn about His principles and His instructions, the more abundant our lives will become. The way our flesh does things and the way God does things are vastly different. As God’s Word is written in our hearts by reading and absorbing it, and as our mind becomes renewed by meditating in the Word, we will do things more and more according to God’s principles and less and less according to our flesh. In the Passover, it was the Father’s instructions to His people and their faith in those instructions that spared them and it is in honor of that principle that Passover is observed.

God is a God of promises, agreements and covenants. There are several different types of covenants in the Bible, but the one we know the most about as believers is the “New Covenant” – which was made by the blood of Jesus Christ. The lamb sacrificed at Passover, whose blood covered the doorways of those who believed God’s instructions, represented Jesus, the Lamb who was slain before the creation of the world. His blood now affords us eternal life…the ultimate protection from death! Christ is our Passover.

God is a God of timing and rhythm. Nothing in God’s kingdom happens by chance. Ecclesiastes 3:1 says, “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven.” God is strategic and concise. God’s timing is cyclical. Our sleep cycle refreshes us with rest and gets us ready for being awake. Our weekly cycle marks days of work and days of rest. A woman’s biological cycle determines the timing of procreation. We measure a day by the rotation of the earth. We measure a year by the revolution of the earth’s orbit around the sun.

Your Appointment

The same concept applies spiritually. Throughout the year, different cycles of feasts occurred that marked out different and distinct seasons for God’s people. Passover was the first feast of the year and marked a distinct season for God’s people, just like the revolution of the earth brings winter, spring, summer and fall. When you study God’s Word, you begin to see the significance of the feasts, times and seasons. God has a cycle, a timing and a rhythm set for your life personally as well.

The enemy plots and schemes to break into your life cycle to divert you from God’s awesome plan by using generational curses, or cycles of sinful behavior that we are predisposed to. The same patterns and curses your forefathers struggled with, the enemy will try to interject into your life and the lives of your children. However, there are “God moments” given to us where God breaks these demonic patterns in our lives forever. When you sense God leading you to confront an issue in your life, don’t miss your appointment!

Passover is about the celebration of God’s protection by the blood of the lamb, which allowed His people to leave slavery, enter freedom, and pursue the abundance found in the Promised Land. Does that sound familiar? Christ is our Passover. We have eternal life by the blood of the Lamb, and His blood allows us to enter freedom in order to pursue our Promised Land– our earthly destiny and our promise of heaven to come!

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Palm Sunday

Now the crowd that was with him when he called Lazarus from the tomb and raised him from the dead continued to spread the word. Many people, because they had heard that he had given this miraculous sign, went out to meet him. So the Pharisees said to one another, “See, this is getting us nowhere. Look how the whole world has gone after him!” JOHN 12:17-19

2015 is the year of favor and grace. Within this year, we are in the season of Holy Week. Holy Week is one of the most life changing, miracle working seasons of the entire year set by God himself as a divine appointment with man. Holy week starts with Passover, deepens on Good Friday and climaxes with joy on Resurrection Sunday.

Divine appointments, or as the Bible calls them, “feasts”, are His holy days with instructions given for observance to honor Him with opportunities for deeper communion and blessings for His children. We don’t celebrate Holy Week out of legalism because we have to, but out of obedience because we own the privilege to do so!

Passover remembers the Israelites’ exodus from hundreds of years of slavery in Egypt to the “redemption of a newborn nation” for a people belonging to the Lord. It was the blood of the Passover lamb that rescued the Israelites from the angel of death who struck down every firstborn in Egypt. Passover is not so much “passing by” as it is “passing so as to shield over” – that means protection! Because of the “blood of the Lamb”, there are great BENEFITS for you who receive Jesus Christ! Let’s think about the significance of Palm Sunday. Palm Sunday is a really special day for Jesus. Palm Sunday was the height of Jesus’ popularity, a sweet, short time when people flocked to Him in love and prophetically proclaimed Him Messiah, Son of God, Savior of the World, as they brought their palm leaves, waved them before Him in reverence, threw them down as a path for his colt to walk upon, and praised Him, saying, Hosanna! There are two groups of people in this passage from John 12:17-19. There were those that were with Him, and there were those who went to meet Him. The ones that went to meet him were only there because those who were with Him continued to spread the word about Him. Your testimony and praise has power to pull people to Jesus! In John 12:13, there is a peculiar phrase used by the people worshiping Jesus – a word that had never been recorded before this time! Let’s look at it again:

“…Took branches of palm trees, and went forth to meet him, and cried, Hosanna: Blessed is the King of Israel that cometh in the name of the Lord.” [Emphasis mine]

We see this peculiar phrase again in other places Jesus passed by:

And the multitudes that went before, and that followed, cried, saying, Hosanna to the Son of David: Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord; Hosanna in the highest.” Matthew 21:9 [Emphasis mine]

And when the chief priests and scribes saw the wonderful things that he did, and the children crying in the temple, and saying, Hosanna to the Son of David; they were sore displeased, And said unto him, Hearest thou what these say? And Jesus saith unto them, Yea; have ye never read, Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings thou hast perfected praise?” Matthew 21:15-16 [Emphasis mine]

What is this peculiar phrase “Hosanna?” And why did it anger the Pharisees for people to cry out to Jesus, “Hosanna to the Son of David!” This word Hosanna means “Save now! I pray thee now, save!” and, “I pray be open now to defend or rescue!” We know what “hallelujah” means… Hallelujah is praise for what He has done. Hosanna is a praise for what he is about to do. Hosanna is a prophetic praise that brings your future into alignment with the revelation of God. These children and multitudes were speaking forth what Christ was about to do for them! Thisphrase of praise intimidated the Pharisees – they knew what Hosanna meant.

After this I looked and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and in front of the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands. And they cried out in a loud voice: Salvation belongs to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb.” REV. 7:9-10 [Emphasis mine]

Let’s look at some of the natural qualities of the palm tree to get a grasp of something God is trying to symbolize to us. A palm tree is 40 -80 feet tall, with fronds 6-12 feet long. It attracts the eye wherever it is seen. In Exodus 15:27, it states, And they came to Elim, where were twelve wells of water, and threescore and ten palm trees: and they encamped there by the waters.” Palm trees are a symbol of beauty and prosperity. The sight of a palm tree indicates that the immediate location has water, and water is life. The fruit of the palm tree is highly valued by desert travelers, and consumed while it is fresh. The older the palm tree, the sweeter its fruit tastes. Palm trees are not found in cold regions. They are woody perennials, with distinctive leaves that generally form a crown at the top of the plant. There is a bend in every palm tree. The Palm tree has been termed the prince of the vegetable kingdom. The palm is one of the most important trees in the East. The fruit is the daily food of millions; its sap is made into wine. The seeds are made into a food for camels and the fibers of the leaf stems are woven into ropes and rigging. Its growth is also peculiar. Unlike most other trees, instead of adding a new outer ring to the trunk every year, it starts and continues to grow inwardly, from the centre. This remarkable tree even flourishes amid the dearth and drought of hot climates. When most other trees would find survival impossible, it lifts its fronds in victory. 2015 is the year of favor and grace. Within this year, we are in the season of Holy Week. Holy Week is one of the most life changing, miracle working seasons of the entire year set by God himself. Palm Sunday is the height of Jesus’ popularity and is a tragically short but very sweet time in which people flocked to Him in love and proclaimed Him Messiah! On this Palm Sunday of 2015, the year of His favor and grace, as you wave your palm leaves, I pray that you remember the significance of the palm tree – prosperity and blessing – and the significance of this day – prophetically proclaiming the return of the Messiah – because the day is coming and the time is short when we will see Him again in glory!

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Good Friday

After this he went down to Capernaum, he, and his mother, and his brethren, But he spake of the temple of his body. When therefore he was risen froand his disciples: and they continued there not many days. And the Jews’ passover was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem, And found in the temple those that sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the changers of money sitting: And when he had made a scourge of small cords,

he drove them all out of the temple, and the sheep, and the oxen; and poured out the changers’ money, and overthrew the tables; And said unto them that sold doves, Take these things hence; make not my Father’s house an house of merchandise. And his disciples remembered that it was written, The zeal of thine house hath eaten me up. Then answered the Jews and said unto him, What sign showest thou unto us, seeing that thou doest these things? Jesus answered and said unto them, Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up. 

Then said the Jews, Forty and six years was this temple in building, and wilt thou rear it up in three days?m the dead, his disciples remembered that he had said this unto them; and they believed the scripture, and the word which Jesus had said.” John 2:12-22 [Emphasis mine]

Holy week starts with Passover, deepens on somber Good Friday and climaxes with the joy of Resurrection Sunday. Good Friday is part of a most holy season for God and His people. We are in one of the most life changing, miracle working seasons of the entire year, set by God Himself as a divine appointment.

Prophetically, 2015 is the year of favor and grace. There are some people who are going to stand back and look at your life, and be astonished at what God has done! Remember, God wants to be glorified through you. He has so much more ahead of you than what has happened in the past.

Everything God does is according to design. God has a strategic design to dwell with man. Everything He does is “the working out” of His “Eternal purpose which He purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Eph 3:11). God wants good things for you – good spiritual, material, and emotional blessings that will glorify Him and draw others to Him.

God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ” 1 Thessalonians 5:9

Jesus Christ came to give you abundant life (John 10:10). This means a life of superior quality. Jesus willingly came for you and me, and God the Father sent Him for us to reconcile you to Himself by Jesus Christ (2 Cor 5:18). Reconcile means to bring together again those who are alienated, to re-unite those who are at variance, to restore by removing that which hinders agreement and fellowship.

Those redeemed by Christ are not only recovered from the fall by being brought back to life in Christ, but they are made to reign in life. God, who is the greatest architect of the universe, drew up His plans before a creature was ever brought into existence. Everything concerning Christ and His church was firmly settled “BEFORE” the foundation of the earth!

All that concerns the well-being of His people was done according to God’s covenant enactment. As Psalms 111:5 states, “He will ever be mindful of His covenant”. God is ever mindful of His promises towards your life. He is always thinking of you. There were no contingencies and no uncertainties. The Father decreed Salvation; the Son consented to Purchase it and the Holy Spirit pledged Himself to the Communication of it!

Before any human being ever set foot on this planet, a covenant was cut with which we had nothing to do other than the love bestowed upon us by the Father. We were simply destined to reap the benefits of a previous agreement, reaping blessings where we did not sow (John 4:38).

All we have to do is learn how to enter the “rest” that He has already created for us. When Jesus cried, “It is finished”, the greatest truth is that a “Whosoever Will” was given access to God through Christ.

And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that hears say, Come. And let him that is thirsty come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.” Rev 22:17

Although this amazing covenant was established from the beginning, it would culminate in the climatic moments of the last few days of Jesus life and death, which we celebrate and honor on Good Friday.

Jesus Christ lived His life looking for the finish line. Holy Week is a week of finalities for our Savior:

  • He made His final approach to Jerusalem.
  • He made His final visit to the Temple.
  • He made his final trip to His favorite town Bethany.
  • He preached His final sermon.
  • He partakes in His final supper with His disciples on Thursday before He will be crucified on Good Friday.

On Good Friday, there is only one stipulation to the Covenant that had been made before the foundation of the earth in order for it to be satisfied. Christ had to make His soul an offering for sin; He would bear the iniquities of all, and pour out his soul to death!

It is in reference to this that He says to His disciples on the eve of His crucifixion: “This is MY BLOOD of the NEW COVENANT, which is shed for many for the remission of sins” (Matt 26:28, emphasis mine).

Remission is the cancellation of guilt. When you take Communion, I want you to remember that Jesus Christ made complete amends to the law for every injury and healed the breach which our transgressions made! In other words, CHRIST repaid all the “wrongs” and made them “right.” This is what Jesus did on Good Friday!

Jesus justified you and me from all things (See Acts 13:38-39). This is the cry of the Protestant Reformation. That’s why true biblical justification says, “You never sinned.” Justification is not God saying “ I know you sinned, but I will act like you didn’t.” That is how man forgives – to forgive, but not forget. Not God – His forgiveness blots out sin from His book.

Justification is a legal term meaning “to acquit, to declare righteous, to pronounce a sentence of acceptance.” Hebrews 9:13 and 10:4 proclaims that “…the blood of bulls and goats could not take away sin.” These imperfect sacrifices could only cover sins temporarily. The precious blood of Jesus Christ, the blood of the New Covenant, did more than cover our sin. His blood took away our sin. HE removed it!

Because of the blood of Jesus, you and I received a sentence of acquittal. Have you accepted Him yet? Justification is a state of acceptance I enter by faith. It is a free gift of God made available through His Son Jesus Christ (Rom 1:17, 3:21, 22). Through the precious blood of Jesus, I have a new standing and am restored to favor by His grace.

What gave this to me again? THE BLOOD OF JESUS. (Rom 3:24, Heb 9:22)

Good Friday is part of a holy season for God and His people. On Good Friday, we became justified because of the shed blood of Jesus Christ. Remember, justification is not God forgiving as man does – God blots your sins from His memory. We celebrate Good Friday because of the power of the blood!

Good Friday is one of the most life changing, miracle working seasons of the entire year, and this year, 2015, is the year of His favor and grace! People are going to stand back and be astonished at what God has done. God has designed this season and this year to pour out His Spirit in anticipation of many blessings! Thank God for the precious BLOOD of JESUS.

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It Is Finished

“When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar; He said, IT IS FINISHED and bowed his head and gave up the ghost…” John 19:30 [Emphasis mine]

At Calvary Jesus declares, “It is finished.”  This was not a cry of defeat, but of victory.  The word “finished” used here means “to do something perfectly.” You could translate it “perfectly perfect” or “completely complete”.  The atoning work of Jesus on the cross is perfect in every aspect and perfect in every respect.

“According as His divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that called us to glory and virtue…” 2 Peter 1:3

Everything you will ever need, in time and eternity, whether spiritual or physical, financial or material, emotional or relational, has been provided by that one sacrifice of Jesus Christ.  It is “perfectly perfect and completely complete”. Jesus finished His plan to restore you, rescue you, and redeem you before He ever started.  From the very beginning, there was purpose. Man lost his relationship and fellowship with God in the garden by the first man Adam. As Romans 3:10 states, “…there is none righteous, no, not one.” When the first Adam fell, we all who were born after his likeness, fell.  When he died, we all died.  (See 1 Corinthians 15:22, which says, “ In Adam all die…”) This malady of death inherited by mankind from Adam is made much clearer in Romans 5:12, where the Word of God declares:

“Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin, and so death passed upon all men for that all have sinned.”

Sin” is not just committing some terrible treason or crime.  The word “sin” used here means “to miss the mark and not to share in the prize.”  Simply put, to “sin” is to come short of the character of Christ.  We all fall into this category; we have all, by God’s definition, “missed the mark”. Sin is a broad, encompassing word that refers to when we fail to give God His rightful place in our lives. Sin is leading lives that withhold from God the glory that all His creatures owe to Him.  We may not all have committed adultery, been fraudulent, got drunk, stolen, robbed, lied, cheated or killed, but we all have done one thing since the First Adam.  We have turned to our own way, which is not God’s way. Sinners, by their very nature, can only sin.  Sin can be thought of as a case of mistaken identity. Even good works done by sinners are done for wrong reasons and because of that wrong motivation are still done in sin.  Jesus told the “do-gooder” Pharisees in Matthew 23:27 that they were like graves painted white; beautiful on the outside, but on the inside full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean.  God looks at the whole person – not just the outside, but the heart itself. Until one’s nature is supernaturally transformed by the power of the blood of Jesus Christ and being born again, a person is by default and definition a “sinner– someone who goes their own way and misses the mark of God.  However, God did not determine to leave us in this fallen condition, but to put us back on His path.

“For the Son of man is come to save that which was lost”. Matt 18:11

“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord” Romans 6:23     

From the very beginning, God had a plan for man.  For every aspect of mankind’s fallen condition here on earth, God had a plan.  He has a plan for repairing the breach, healing the devastation and curing disease.  He has a plan for provision.  He has a plan for mankind’s complete salvation. Revelation 13:8 declares, “The Lamb slain from the foundation of the world…”  From the very beginning, God had a master plan for all of mankind.  God is a personal God – He also has a plan designed for you and I individually! When your family wasn’t there, when you were left alone, crying inside and you thought no one heard you – God had a plan.  When you experienced financial loss, God had a plan to turn it around from the very beginning.  When you lost your job, family, friends, home, and respect – God had a plan.  When you walked through that divorce, God had a plan. When the trust was broken and betrayal knocked the breath out of you, when the stress caused so much hurt, when you were torn about where to go or what to do – God had a plan. When you faced physical sickness, diseased in your body, and not sure that God would complete what he promised you, God had a plan.  When you were tearing at your inner most part of your faith, even though you grew up believing God, but doubted His promise to heal you – God had a plan. When you struggled and drowned in addictions, depending on everything else but people, turned to alcohol and pain killers, trying to find a way to escape – God had a plan.  Nothing is too hard for God!  He had a plan for you from the very beginning!             “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life”             “For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him.” John 3:16-17 Why would He do it?  What drove Jesus Christ to pursue you and me?  His love for His Father and His love for you drives Him to draw you and me ever closer to Him with tender cords of loving kindness. Even though He hated the shame and pain of the cross, He stood firm under the most intense pressure of the world. He bore under the most severe, rigorous, extreme unpleasant hardship and treatment…why?  For the joy set before Him.  He endured the cross with you on His mind! That’s why Hebrews 12:2 says, “Who for the Joy that was set before him endured the cross….despising the shame…” The joy that Jesus Christ set His mind upon while enduring crucifixion, shame, and death was our salvation through His death and reconciliation with God.  To reconcile means to bring together again those who are alienated and to re-unite those who are at variance.   Everything you will ever need, in time and eternity, whether spiritual or physical, financial or material, emotional or relational, has been provided by this one sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross.  It is “perfectly perfect and completely complete”. Jesus finished His plan to restore you, rescue you, and redeem you before He ever started.  For every aspect of mankind’s fallen condition here on earth, God has a plan. For everything that you have ever encountered or walked through, God has a plan.  Remember, 2015 is the year of God’s favor and grace!  Jesus came to bring you life, and life more abundantly.  As you receive the immeasurable grace and favor He bestowed upon us all this Easter, remember that He has so much more in store for you than you could ever imagineGod bless you!

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Passover Principles

Speak ye unto all the congregation of Israel, saying, In the tenth day of this month they shall take to them every man a lamb, according to the house of their fathers, a lamb for a house. And if the household be too little for the lamb, let him and his neighbor next unto his house take it according to the number of the souls; every man according to his eating shall make your count for the lamb. Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year: ye shall take it out from the sheep, or from the goats:” Exodus 12:3-5

Our foundation for learning about Passover starts with Jesus Christ the Messiah – the Lamb who was slain before the foundations of the earth. It’s all about the blood of Jesus. The Biblical Feasts illuminate supernatural truths and blessings for you today. They were all built on the foundation of God’s blood covenant with mankind. Because of the blood, there are great benefits for you! The LORD told Moses He was about to give His people a new beginning. It is important to always keep in mind that an ending always precedes a beginning. God uses crisis in order to bring about opportunity. Crises create decisive moments. Crises are divine moments of change. In the Passover, God used a crisis to bring about an opportunity for Him to perform mighty miracles. This shaped and formed the future and destiny of the Israelites forever. The Passover Lamb is a type and shadow of Jesus Christ. A lamb was a domesticated animal. The lamb that was sacrificed cost something personal to the people of God. Lambs were of value, and God’s people were very poor. Throughout the Bible, the lamb is used in a figurative nature to describe us as believers being members of a flock, or Jesus Christ as the ultimate sacrifice. The lamb was to be roasted whole and no bones broken. According to John 19:36, not a bone was broken in Jesus during the crucifixion, even though it was Roman protocol to break the legs of a person crucified. The most significant usage of the figure of a lamb is in Isaiah 53:7 where the Messiah is led “like a lamb to the slaughter”. This verse is also echoed in Revelation 5:6 and 13:8. New days in the Biblical calendar begin at sundown instead of midnight. The origin of this comes from Genesis 1:5 where one day is defined first by the evening, followed by day. So, your new day begins in the midnight hour, where you battle against the forces trying to hinder what God has for you. If you faint not and continue to sow good spiritual seeds, the daylight always breaks forth. The highest point of pressure is always right before your biggest breakthrough. Not only did it take that many supernatural judgments to convince Pharoah that Moses’ God was far superior, but God was taking apart the spiritual environment of Egypt one by one. The Egyptian gods had animal characteristics, and the Egyptians looked to animals as representing “gods”. Spiritually speaking, these false gods are fallen, evil spirits (see Deut. 32:17 and 1Cor. 10:19-20) assigned to guide and protect the destiny of Egypt. By The Lord God coming against the gods of Egypt during the exodus, this left Egypt spiritually powerless and defenseless. God dismantled the principalities of Egypt one by one, using the supernatural plagues. Passover showed that the LORD made a distinction between His people and those who were not His people by the application of the lamb’s blood to their door posts. Those behind the blood-stained door were unharmed, while others who were not, died. A similar application will be used when determining who God’s people are in the judgment. Those whose names are written in the lamb’s book of life will have a place in heaven prepared for them by Jesus Christ and His angels. How do we get our name written in the lamb’s book of life? Salvation is everything provided by the death of Jesus on the cross – eternal life, healing, deliverance, restoration, and wholeness. The “message of mercy” is that innocent blood which was put on the mercy seat redeemed you. The blood of Jesus bought you back and granted you access to the covenants of God. The pattern we find in Israel’s feasts is the knowledge that there is a place of real victory over sin and the flesh for the Church of Jesus Christ and it is through the blood. By the sacrifices that were offered in the Tabernacle and in the Temple, the sins of the people were covered – but only for 1 year. These sacrifices offered no permanent solution to the problem of sin. Instead, they merely provided a temporary covering. So, when John the Baptist introduced Jesus in John 1:29, he said “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!” Jesus put away sin when He came and offered Himself as a sacrifice on the cross. (Hebrews 9:26) He did not just cover for it for one more year like the animal sacrifices of the Tabernacle and Temple did. (Hebrews 10:3-4) This sacrifice was perfect. (Hebrews 10:14) What Jesus did is perfect, and its effect within us is perfect. Nothing can be taken from it. Nothing can be added to it. The sacrifice of Jesus was perfect, however, our appropriation of it is progressive. Many people accept salvation and then neglect the benefits it provides. Our sanctification is progressive. We are coming progressively closer to God and changed more into His image every day. The root problem of humanity is rebellion against God. Sin is not always committing some terrible crime. Sin is failing to give God His rightful place in our lives. To “sin” is to come short of the character of Christ. During this Passover season, we’re remembering the Passover lamb – Jesus Christ, the Son of God, Savior of the World. We are in a year that God will pour out His undeserved favor and grace to those who are in position by activated faith to receive it! Jesus Christ – our Passover Lamb – covers us, keeps us and redeems us. The power is in the blood! I pray that this Passover season 2015 would release unprecedented victory, favor and grace, and a fresh intimacy with God that covers you in His presence, bringing you, your family, and sphere of influence to the next level of glory in Him!

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