365 Prophecies: Prophecy 21
The Messiah will be the Passover Lamb, without spot or blemish.
Old Testament Prediction:
Exodus 12:3-5 “Speak to all the congregation of Israel, saying: ‘On the tenth of this month every man shall take for himself a lamb, according to the house of his father, a lamb for a household. And if the household is too small for the lamb, let him and his neighbor next to his house take it according to the number of the persons; according to each man’s need you shall make your count for the lamb. Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year. You may take it from the sheep or from the goats.’ ”
New Testament Fulfillment:
1 Peter 1:18-19 “…knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.”
In this 21st prophecy from the Old Testament, we see that Jesus is the fulfillment of the Passover Lamb of Exodus 12, who is without sin and spotless.
The Lord was very specific in regards to the kind of sacrifice that could be offered for sins. In the Old Testament, there were certain qualifications that were required if He would accept the offerings that were brought. Exodus Chapter 12 describes a Lamb that was ordained to die. His blood would cover those who had sinned, protecting them from judgement and death.
The Passover Lamb was an advanced look at the arrival of the Messiah who would be the Lamb that takes away the sins of the world.
The Lord’s instructions to Moses for how the Lamb was selected and the way in which Passover was to be conducted were very detailed and distinct.
1. The Old Testament animals had to be perfect in order to qualify for a sacrifice that would cover sin.
2. The future New Testament sacrifice of the Messiah also had to be perfect if He would qualify to cover all our sins.
All men are incapable of meeting the requirements for salvation because they are sinners. How could someone who is himself imperfect be able to help another who is also imperfect? By the example given to us here in the Book of Exodus, we understand that anyone who would be qualified as the Savior of all others would himself need to be without sin. If a future candidate should arrive who would claim to be the Messiah, an evaluation could easily be made of his qualifications. If he is not without sin, a male and willing to die for the guilty, he cannot be the Messiah.
This is why it is illogical to think that any plan of man, a religious organization, or a personal attempt at approaching God based on past good works, is possible.
The standard of God is perfection; anything less is not acceptable. Since all men are born imperfect and they demonstrate their continued imperfection throughout their entire life, no man is good enough to meet the standards necessary to save themselves or anyone else. When a church or an individual claims that they are the way to God and that by following their doctrine or methods a person can receive eternal life, they are in error. We know this because of this 21st prophecy in which we see the standards required by the Passover Lamb of Exodus 12.
No man saves any other man unless he has been able to live a perfect and holy life himself. Since all men are sinners, no man can be saved without a Savior who is perfect.
The Passover Lamb
When a Lamb was brought to the priest at the entrance of the Tabernacle for the sacrifice of sins, he was carefully inspected for any defect or flaw. If a single flaw was detected, such as a hair which was not snow white, the Lamb would be disqualified. See Prophecy 332 for a complete study on the Tabernacle.
According to Exodus 12, the Lamb for Passover was to be presented to Israel on the 10th day of the month. He was to be the firstborn, a male, and without blemish. If he met these requirements, he would be killed about sundown on the 14th day of the month.
Exodus 12:3-6 Speak to all the congregation of Israel, saying: “On the tenth of this month every man shall take for himself a lamb, according to the house of his father, a lamb for a household. And if the household is too small for the lamb, let him and his neighbor next to his house take it according to the number of the persons; according to each man’s need you shall make your count for the lamb. Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year. You may take it from the sheep or from the goats. Now you shall keep it until the fourteenth day of the same month. Then the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it at twilight.”
Up to this point, when Peter and the other disciples encouraged Jesus to announce to the rest of Israel that He was their promised Messiah, He refused.
John 7:3-6 His brothers therefore said to Him, “Depart from here and go into Judea, that Your disciples also may see the works that You are doing. For no one does anything in secret while he himself seeks to be known openly. If You do these things, show Yourself to the world.” For even His brothers did not believe in Him. Then Jesus said to them, “My time has not yet come, but your time is always ready.”
Jesus was waiting until the 10th day of Nissan so that the announcement of His arrival was in accordance with the date established by the Old Testament prophecy of Exodus 12. On the 10th day of Nissan the Lamb would remain under inspection until the 14th day of the month.
Jesus rode into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday, the 10th day of the Nissan (April), and allowed men to proclaim Him, for the first time ever, the Messiah. The people who were there to greet Him spread palm branches over the road ahead of Jesus as He rode into Jerusalem. His arrival on Palm Sunday was the same day that Exodus called for the inspection of the Passover Lamb. It was an opportunity for those who came to greet the Lord to inspect His life for any imperfection. If they believed that He was perfect and qualified to be the Messiah, they could hail Him with the praise that was called for, when the Messiah arrived, as prescribed by Psalm 118. If the people believed Him to be a sinner as with all other men, they would have rejected Him for His imperfections. The crowd hailed Jesus as the perfect and spotless Lamb, and they received Him as their Messiah.
Matthew 21:1-3 Now when they drew near Jerusalem, and came to Bethphage, at the Mount of Olives, then Jesus sent two disciples, saying to them, “Go into the village opposite you, and immediately you will find a donkey tied, and a colt with her. Loose them and bring them to Me. And if anyone says anything to you, you shall say, ‘The Lord has need of them,’ and immediately he will send them.”
Matthew 21:6-8 So the disciples went and did as Jesus commanded them. They brought the donkey and the colt, laid their clothes on them, and set Him on them. And a very great multitude spread their clothes on the road; others cut down branches from the trees and spread them on the road.
Matthew 21:9 Then the multitudes who went before and those who followed cried out, saying: “Hosanna to the Son of David! ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD!’ Hosanna in the highest!”
The proclamation of the people who hailed Jesus as the coming Messiah was predicted in Psalms 118. When the Psalmist proclaimed, This is the day the Lord has made, he was speaking of one specific day: The day the world would be introduced to Israel’s Messiah.
Psalms 118:24-26 This is the day the LORD has made; We will rejoice and be glad in it. Save now, I pray, O LORD; O LORD, I pray, send now prosperity. Blessed is he who comes in the name of the LORD!
Later, Jesus told the religious leaders of Israel who rejected Him as the Messiah, that they would not see Him again until they proclaimed this statement, written in Psalms 118, Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord…
Matthew 23:39 for I say to you, you shall see Me no more till you say, “Blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD!”
Notice that the people who were hailing Jesus as their Messiah were saying Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord. They had been taught that when the Messiah arrived, the words from Psalm 118:24-26 were to be spoken in response to His arrival into Jerusalem.
Jesus presents Himself at Jerusalem in fulfillment of an additional Old Testament prophecy: The Messiah will arrive in Jerusalem on the foal of a donkey, according to Zechariah 9:9. See Prophecy 338.
Zechariah 9:9 “Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your King is coming to you; He is just and having salvation, Lowly and riding on a donkey, A colt, the foal of a donkey.”
Jesus knew that He was fulfilling the prophecy of Exodus 12 for the coming of the spotless Lamb of God who would take away the sins of the world.
Matthew 21:4-5 All this was done that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying: “Tell the daughter of Zion, ‘Behold, your King is coming to you, Lowly, and sitting on a donkey, A colt, the foal of a donkey.’ ”
On the 14th day of the month, again in fulfillment of Exodus 12, Jesus will be killed at twilight, as required of the passover Lamb.
The Lamb who takes away the sins of the world
When John saw Jesus coming towards him as he was baptizing in the Jordan river, he proclaimed Jesus as The Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world…
John 1:29 The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!”
The fulfillment of this 21st prophecy from the Old Testament that describes Jesus as the spotless Lamb, is found in Peter’s words from the Book of 1 Peter 1:18-19:
1 Peter 1:18-19 knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.
Jesus Himself claimed that He was without sin:
John 8:46 Which of you convicts Me of sin?
The testimony of the scriptures is that Jesus’ life was one of perfection and Holiness and that this was the source of His power over sin and death to be our Savior.
Romans 1:4 and declared to be the Son of God with power according to the Spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead.
It is because of Jesus’ sinless perfection that He is qualified to be the Savior of the world. There is no other person who has ever been born who could make this claim. This is one of the reasons that these 365 Old Testament prophecies are so important. They validate, explain, and provide a foundation for all the events of Jesus’ life and how He perfectly fulfilled all of the requirements of these many prophecies.
Every person on the earth today has the opportunity to have all of their sins forgiven and removed, and obtain eternal life. All this is possible because Jesus lived a perfect life as a man and then offered up His perfect life in exchange for all of us as the spotless Lamb of God who has taken away all of the sins of the world.
To believe this, trust in this, and live for this truth is what causes the salvation and eternal life of a human being.