It has always been important to obey God. This was true in the Garden of Eden, and it is still true today. An example of this principle can be found in the Passover feast.
The Passover was instituted in Egypt and was a part of the 10th and last plague. Note what God said. "And the LORD said unto Moses, Yet will I bring one plague more upon Pharaoh, and upon Egypt; afterwards he will let you go hence: when he shall let you go, he shall surely thrust you out hence altogether" (Ex. 11:1). This "one more" was the death of the firstborn, both of the people and the animals. To protect Israel during that plague, God gave instructions for Israel concerning the use of blood. "22 And ye shall take a bunch of hyssop, and dip it in the blood that is in the bason, and strike the lintel and the two side posts with the blood that is in the bason; and none of you shall go out at the door of his house until the morning. 23 For the LORD will pass through to smite the Egyptians; and when he seeth the blood upon the lintel, and on the two side posts, the LORD will pass over the door, and will not suffer the destroyer to come in unto your houses to smite you" (Ex. 12:22-23). When the children of Israel did just what God commanded, then God passed over their homes when He smote the land of Egypt with death. Note, again, verse 23 above.
The children of Israel selected the Passover lamb on the 10th day of the month (Ex. 12:3) and then killed the lamb on the 14th day of the month (Ex. 12:6). The blood of the lamb was used to mark the houses where the children of Israel lived. When the designated night came, the children of Israel did as they were told: they killed the lamb and marked their homes with its blood. Ex. 12:28 - "And the children of Israel went away, and did as the LORD had commanded Moses and Aaron, so did they." The children of Israel obeyed God, and He passed over their homes.
Note what happened to Egypt. "29 And it came to pass, that at midnight the LORD smote all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh that sat on his throne unto the firstborn of the captive that was in the dungeon; and all the firstborn of cattle. 30 And Pharaoh rose up in the night, he, and all his servants, and all the Egyptians; and there was a great cry in Egypt; for there was not a house where there was not one dead" (Ex. 12;29-30). There was death in the land of Egypt, but there were none dead in the land of Goshen, that part of the land of Egypt where Israel lived. What was the difference? The only difference between the two was that Israel obeyed God and marked their homes with the blood of the Passover lamb: they obeyed God, and they were spared. It pays to obey God.
This same principle is true today. We must obey God. It is true regarding the blood of the Passover lamb: we must also be marked with blood. Note 1 Corinthians 5:5 - "Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us." We are marked with the blood of the Lamb - Christ - when we are washed in His blood. "Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood" (Rev. 1:5). We are washed when we are baptized. "And now why tarriest thou? Arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord" (Acts 22:16). We are marked by the blood of our Passover lamb when we obey the command to be baptized.
Now take a look at Rom. 6:3-5 - "3 Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? 4 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. 5 For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection:" Christ shed His blood in his death, and when we are baptized into his death, where he shed His blood, we contact the blood and are thus marked with the blood of our Passover lamb.
Are you marked with the blood of Christ? You are if you have obeyed the simple command to be baptized. Obedience to God is very important. Oliver Church of Christ. 119 Holden St., Rogersville, AL 35652.
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