“The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, ‘Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!'” —John 1:29
Auctioneers are interesting people. They learn to speak in a special way with rhythm and style. It takes a lot of practice to do the auction chant so that the audience perks up their ears and forgets about everything else while the bidding process takes place. An auctioneer might practice by saying “a big bug bit a bear on the nose” real fast several times on auction day. In the heat of the moment, a skilled auctioneer inspires people to bid now for a bargain.
When farmers and ranchers attend auctions, it is important not to buy blindly. Some cows, pigs, goats and sheep are healthy, and some are not. Before the bids start, it’s helpful to watch the cattle walk. Are they energetic or sickly? Do they have anything oozing out of their eyes? One diseased animal could infect a whole herd. So it’s important to know the quality before grabbing your ear or waving your hand when the auctioneer is humming.
In a similar way, the Lord commanded the Israelites to bring their best cattle when they made a sacrifice to Him. As cattle producers protect their bank accounts by buying the high-quality cattle, we should bring our best to God. When we cut corners, the Lord is not pleased. A pure sacrifice is required to deal with sin. “‘When you offer blind animals for sacrifice, is that not wrong? When you sacrifice lame or diseased animals, is that not wrong? Try offering them to your governor! Would he be pleased with you? Would he accept you?’ says the Lord Almighty” (Malachi 1:8).
In many cases, the Israelites followed God’s instructions and gave a suitable offering. “The animals you choose must be year-old males without defect, and you may take them from the sheep or the goats” (Exodus 12:5). This blood sacrifice was a preview of Christ laying down His life for us. John the Baptist declared that Jesus fulfilled all of the Old Testament sacrifices by dying once in our place. “The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, ‘Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!'” (John 1:29).
This spotless Lamb purchased salvation with His own blood.
— Bill Kent, Pastor of Memorial Baptist Church, Sylvania, Georgia
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