Lamb of God

November 23, 2018 at 5:14 am (Remodeling the Mind, Thoughts to Ponder, WSGD Newes) (, , )

I follow this YouTube channel that recently posted the harvest of their lambs. This small homestead farm is full of integrity and the graciousness and passion for honoring God in their everyday lives is quite the testimony. The harvest video was… hard and…sobering…and beautiful in its execution. Pun intended. While watching Dan so respectfully kill his lamb, with tears flowing down his face, and then with as much respect in the skinning and removal of its inward parts as he had for tending the creature from birth, it can’t help but bring Yeshua (Jesus) to mind and those many years previous to His birth where lambs (among others) were sacrificed for our sins daily. Sin costs, and a precious price. Dan and his young son live the knowledge of this in ways most of us don’t, every year at this time. I don’t think it’s ironic the timing; as so many people are gearing up to celebrate the “birth” of the Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world.

Most of us have no concept of raising our own food and tending the earth as God intended. It would be grotesque and even considered barbaric to do so now, with our modern and updated, more knowledgeable and “smart” ways these days. Even those who hunt for their food stay much removed from understanding what sin cost the whole of creation. But raising and righteously and tenderly caring for any creature from birth to the table is the only way to fully comprehend the depths of it; even now with Yeshua having done the ultimate sacrifice – once and for all.

At Passover, God instructs His people to bring the spotless lamb (no replacements are allowed this time, it has to be a lamb) inside to the family dwelling for two weeks prior to the sacrifice. This was done on purpose, because the heart can disconnect still if the “cattle remain separate” at harvest time. Still not easy but much easier. So at Passover, He brings a bonding element into the sacrifice – to teach and cement the gravity of sin. The earth and animals are completely innocent of sin, but suffer the effects because of us. It’s one thing to bring in an annoying animal and keep some distance at heart. Imagine a goat, for instance, braying at all hours and wrecking the home for a week before it’s time to sacrifice it. If anything, that would bring an element of relief or even a sense of justice to kill it. But lambs are gentle and in new environments reduced to calm out of fear and adjustment of the change that occurs and removal from their herd. They are obedient and docile and well… so sweet and innocent looking…cuddly. Before the two weeks is up, the family could not help but have their own heart strings attached to theirs. Especially the children and the parents suffering doubly, watching their children hurt so badly at the lambs loss on top of their own breaking heart. God knows how to make a point, drive it home and etch it for reminders in our hearts, not just our minds. Today, on the small homesteads, they attend their animals, their children tend them with affection, they watch them be born and raise them, some raise them with tenderness and reverence. Harvest time for these is flat hard. For those who believe and follow Yeshua, the cost of sin puts its full weight on their hearts once a year. For those of us who go to the butcher or grocery store… we have very little access to this lesson and the depth it brings to the Word – thankfulness. I suspect Dan, whose heart is fully invested in honoring God in EVERYTHING he does, knows this and thus posted this video on Thanksgiving day but at midnight – the landslide before Black Friday which has no life…a day totally deprived of meaning what so ever.

Having learned the tenderest way to kill his lambs he raised, named, nursed, pet, comforted, pastured, and played with for 7-8 months.

Some having kept as breeders, so watching them give birth several times to feed his family. He weeps as the knife traipses its way across their throats, while he holds them in the position of their utmost vulnerability but also totally submitted…trusting… and waits for them to become motionless, such a heart can not but help but run to his Savior! Feel gratitude and magnitude of life all at once. And find a perspective of forgiveness as he carves away the skin and organs of vitality in a way most of us will never experience. The living like this every year transforms this man into an image bearer of the Most High God that can not be denied.

His first year killing his allotted lambs, set aside for food. He did his homework, he did his best to get the set up for the kindest kill, the least stressful for all involved. He hired a professional butcher to come teach him. He stepped away for a moment for the call of duty, and returned to find the butcher had proceeded without him. Grabbed the first lamb, kicking and screaming around the corner, in front of all the other lambs and killed it before he could join him. That entire harvest session took weeks for his family to recover from. It broke their hearts, some didn’t recover and left. I couldn’t help but think of how most the meat we consume is harvested, and how blind those who do the deed must become to do it, heartless. How robots and machines now carve the sacrifice removing the stain from human hands. Conveniently packaged and ready to cook this important process – meant to bring depth to our character – brings expectancy and depreciation instead.

So… you say…”since Messiah died and replaced this whole sacrifice thing… what is the point to all this?”

You see… Yeshua fulfilled the sacrifice, but God’s desire for us to partake in the understanding of the gravity of life for our life, this never changed. Too many people live in the land of complaint and blame because WE gave our food into their hands and they became heartless and evil in their management of it while we moved on to the ‘more important things’ of life: like insurance, vacations, early retirement, possession accumulation in the disguise of inheritance, education, careers and hobbies. We have lost the depth of character for whom whose Image we are born to bear. Then we grumble about who took over and their lack of integrity and righteousness in their duties. Protesting loudly but doing… nothing… really to change it. Not like Dan. A police detective, headed towards what we would consider a bright and promising career, providing well for his family in a realm of “stability” most thought He was nuts to leave. He took responsibility for his health and family back into his own hands with the full understanding that he’d fail completely without God’s own shepherding of his heart while He teaches him how to shepherd others.

This is the message. The managing and caring for this earth, the animals and all God made was placed in our hands to tend. A great honor and responsibility. Full of hard work, requiring a trust and reliance on God that one can only experience in such a way of life. That integrates all God said from the beginning to the end of the book we call the Bible into every decision and action we take everyday to etch it on our hearts in action so as to make a permante mark on our souls. Yeshua never changed this.

We must heed the lessons to learn them. Grieve our excuses, blindness and neglect, take full responsibility back into our hands, and honor the Lord each moment forward. This is repentance.

We may not all be able to homestead to gain this perspective. Yet, I’m here, sharing this blog, having tapped into the message and can start where I can today. So can you. It starts by truly being thankful, fully repenting and beginning with just one obedience a day to trade your thoughts for His thoughts, your ways for His ways…

To acknowledge the state of disaster our health, food, water, air, and systems of commerce, education and the like is OUR failure. Not the government’s, not our grandparents, not illegal aliens, not politics, no… none of these things can keep you and I from the love of God that strengthens us to live according to His integrity. Not now, not ever.

May we be truly grateful for such a profound grace. In this, the year of our Lord 5779 or 2018.

🙏 May we comprehend the magnitude of Your sacrifice, Yeshua, Salvation, Lamb of God, and may we not lose sight of its effects on the innocent and life giving sources that our sin continues to taint until Your return. May we understand the depth of Your forgiveness and respond with our whole lives as if it makes all the difference, eradicating blame and slackness in stepping up to the full gift of tending and caring for all you’ve given us in this life, Oh Author of Life and great Shepherd. May our every minute chant “To God be the glory” until your return! Amen. 🙏

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