Summary: Communion sermon taken from the Exodus passage in which the death angel passes over those who had placed the lamb’s blood on their doorframes.
TEXT: Exodus 12:1-14
LITTLE NANCY ASKED HER MOTHER ONE SUNDAY AS SHE WAS PREPARING LUNCH WHY SHE CUT THE ENDS OFF THE HAM BEFORE SHE COOKED IT. MOM REPLIED, “WELL, I’M NOT REALLY SURE. I SUPPOSE YOU CUT THE ENDS OFF THE HAM SO THE HAM CAN BETTER ABSORB THE JUICES AND SPICES AND MAKE IT MORE TENDER. I LEARNED IT FROM GRANDMA THOUGH. WHY DON’T YOU CALL HER AND ASK HER.”
NANCY CALLED GRANDMA AND ASKED HER THE SAME QUESTION. GRANDMA SAID, “WELL HONEY, I REALLY HAVEN’T EVEN THOUGHT ABOUT IT FOR A WHILE. I DON’T REMEMBER, BUT I GUESS YOUR MOTHER IS RIGHT. I GUESS IT IS SO THE HAM CAN BETTER ABSORB THE JUICES AND SPICES AND MAKE IT MORE TENDER. BUT, I LEARNED IT FROM YOUR GREAT GRANDMA. WHY DON’T YOU CALL HER AND ASK HER.”
NANCY, A LITTLE FRUSTRATED WITH THE RUN AROUND WENT AHEAD AND CALLED GREAT GRANDMA AND HER ASKED THE SAME QUESTION, TELLING HER THE SAME POSSIBLE EXPLANATION.
GREAT GRANDMA THOUGHT ABOUT IT FOR A MINUTE AND BEGAN TO LAUGH. THEN SHE SAID, “WELL NANCY, I DON’T KNOW ABOUT MUCH ABOUT JUICES AND SPICES. I DO KNOW THAT IF I DON’T CUT THE ENDS OFF MY HAM, IT WON’T FIT IN MY PAN.” 1
· Sometimes either we’re not sure, or we’ve forgotten why we do things
· Today is Communion Sunday and it can be the same way with Communion
š We can allow it to become so mechanical that we forget what it’s about
· Today’s text is full of meaning & significance
· Go back today to & look at the Old Testament to help us understand some of that significance
I. TELL STORY
A. Israelites have been slaves in Egypt for 400 years
1. Moses & Aaron appear on the scene to deliver them & to lead them to
their own land
2. Pharoah, of course, refused to let them go, even after God sent a
series of plagues on the Egyptians
3. God says He is going to send one more plague on Egypt. He says He
is going to send His death angel through the country and slay the firstborn son of every mother and family in the country.
4. The Israelites will be spared this catastrophe if they will take a lamb – a
one year old male lamb without defects, slaughter it, eat it in the prescribed manner, & take some of its blood and put it on the sides and tops of the doorframes of their houses.
5. Then, when the death angel comes, He will see the blood and pass
over that particular house. (Hence the name pass over)
6. The Israelites would escape God’s judgment because of the blood
of the Lamb
II. BLOOD IS STILL THE ONLY WAY TO ESCAPE GOD’S JUDGMENT
A. Not the blood of a lamb, but the blood of Jesus Christ
1. BAD NEWS - We are sinners and the consequences of our sin is
judgment and damnation
2. Ro 3:23 – “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”
3. Ro. 6:23 – “The wages of sin is death…
B. Wm Barclay says the New Testament uses five different Greek words for sin
– each with different slant to help us understand what sin is 2
§ Each one points a finger at us
1. Hamartia – Missing the mark or the target. Not being as good as we
could be. Example: Husband, wife, neighbor as we could be?
2. Parabasis – Stepping across. Sin is stepping across the line which is
drawn between right and wrong
(a) Example: Cross the line from honesty into dishonesty, from
truth to falsehood, from selflessness to selfishness
3. Paraptoma – Slipping across. Same idea as parabasis but not as
deliberate. Slip across between right and wrong
(a) Words slip out, swept away by some impulse or passion
which cause us to lose our self control
4. Anomia – Lawlessness. This is the sin of the one who knows the
right and who does the wrong. Know the law yet breaks the law
5. Opheilay’ma – Debt. Failure to pay that which is due or a failure in
duty. No one has ever totally fulfilled their duty to God and man.
Failure to pay that debt is opheilay’ma
C. The Bad News was that we are all sinners.
1. The Good News is that God provided another Lamb
2. Jn 1:29 – John [the Baptist] saw Jesus coming & said, “Look, the
Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world. “
IN THAT PLACE BETWEEN WAKEFULNESS AND DREAMS, I FOUND
MYSELF IN THE ROOM. THERE WERE NO DISTINGUISHING FEATURES SAVE
FOR THE ONE WALL COVERED WITH SMALL INDEXCARD FILES. THEY WERE