and they that murmured shall learn doctrine. — Isaiah 29:24
So they read in the book in the law of God distinctly, and gave the sense,
|April 14, 2006||
Volume 5 Number 8
The Secret is Now Known
When something that is known only to one is revealed and published, it is no longer a secret. The prophets who spoke and wrote the words of Yahweh revealed His secret:
7 Surely the Lord Yahweh will do nothing, but he reveals his secret to his servants the prophets. -Amos 3
Therefore, Yahweh opens His secret to us through His prophets, who recorded them in the Scriptures. Using examples, types, and shadows, He shows what He is going to do and then He does it.
Yahweh has shown over and over again how He would save from death those who believe in Him. However, even after the prophets both tell and show His word, many are either unable or unwilling to understand what He has revealed to them. Shortly after He called and sent Isaiah, for example, to prophesy to His people, Yahweh cautioned him:
9 And he said, Go, and tell this people, Hear you indeed, but understand not; and see you indeed, but perceive not. -Isaiah 6
Therefore, even though Yahweh revealed through the prophets and the law the greatest secret of all time, it still remains a mystery to many.
Yahweh sent Abraham up to mount Moriah to offer his son, Isaac, as a sacrifice and showed us, by example, His awesome plan. As they approached the place for the sacrifice, Isaac asked his father, "Where is the lamb?"
7 And Isaac spoke to Abraham his father, and said, My father: and he said, Here am I, my son. And he said, Behold the fire and the wood: but where is the lamb for a burnt offering? -Genesis 22
Abraham responded in faith:
8 And Abraham said, My son, God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt offering: so they went both of them together. -Genesis 22
Demonstrating his complete trust in Yahweh, Abraham continued to obey Him as he prepared to offer his son, Isaac, as a sacrifice:
9 And they came to the place which God had told him of; and Abraham built an altar there, and laid the wood in order, and bound Isaac his son, and laid him on the altar upon the wood.
10 And Abraham stretched forth his hand, and took the knife to slay his son. -Genesis 22
Before Abraham offered his son, Yahweh provided a ram, which is a male sheep (of which the young are called lambs) as the substitute offering. As Yahweh saved Isaac from death, He thereby showed an example of how He would provide His own Lamb so that we may live:
11 And the angel of Yahweh called to him out of heaven, and said, Abraham, Abraham: and he said, Here am I.
12 And he said, Lay not your hand upon the lad, neither do you any thing to him: for now I know that you fear God, seeing you have not withheld your son, your only son from me.
13 And Abraham lifted up his eyes, and looked, and behold behind him a ram caught in a thicket by his horns: and Abraham went and took the ram, and offered him up for a burnt offering in the stead of his son. -Genesis 22
After the people of Israel had been in captivity for four hundred years, Yahweh performed another awesome miracle by which He used a lamb. He told them to kill a lamb on the fourteenth day of the first month of the year and put its blood on the posts of their doors:
5 Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year: you shall take it out from the sheep, or from the goats:
6 And you shall keep it up until the fourteenth day of the same month: and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it in the evening.
7 And they shall take of the blood, and put it on the two side posts and on the upper door post of the houses, wherein they shall eat it. -Exodus 12
The blood served as a token, or sign. The people who lived in the houses with the blood of the lamb applied to their door posts would be spared from the plague of death that was coming to all of the other homes in Egypt. Those who believed Yahweh applied the blood and the angel of death "passed over" their homes:
12 For I will pass through the land of Egypt this night, and will smite all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgment: I am Yahweh.
13 And the blood shall be to you for a token upon the houses where you are: and when I see the blood, I will pass over you, and the plague shall not be upon you to destroy you, when I smite the land of Egypt. -Exodus 12
This event became known as the "Passover." Yahweh told them to remember that day with a feast, which must be kept as a "memorial" forever:
14 And this day shall be to you for a memorial; and you shall keep it a feast to Yahweh throughout your generations; you shall keep it a feast by an ordinance forever. -Exodus 12
Every time the Passover is remembered, we are reminded that by faith the people of Israel put the blood of the lamb on their door posts. They thereby obeyed Him and demonstrated that they believed Yahweh when He said He would save them from death.
The week-long feast by which the Passover was to be remembered is called the "Feast of Unleavened Bread:"
5 In the fourteenth day of the first month at evening is Yahweh’s passover.
6 And on the fifteenth day of the same month is the feast of unleavened bread unto Yahweh: seven days you must eat unleavened bread. -Leviticus 23
As the priests of ancient Israel kept the Passover and performed the sacrifice of lambs year by year, they helped the people remember that Yahweh saved His people by faith in Him through the blood of the lamb.
However, no matter how hard they tried, the sacrifices which the priests offered remained imperfect. They were only shadows of the heavenly pattern that Yahweh had shown to Moses:
5 Who serve to the example and shadow of heavenly things, as Moses was admonished of God when he was about to make the tabernacle: for, See, said he, that you make all things according to the pattern showed to you in the mount. -Hebrews 8
Yahweh used the example of imperfect earthly sacrifices to show the need for a better sacrifice. Only a heavenly sacrifice could fulfill the heavenly pattern that He showed by a type through the earthly sacrifice:
23 It was therefore necessary that the patterns of things in the heavens should be purified with these; but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these.
24 For the Messiah is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us: -Hebrews 9
It was, therefore, necessary for Yahshua the Messiah to come from heaven and offer Himself as the sacrifice to fulfill the will of God:
38 For I came down from heaven, not to do my own will, but the will of him that sent me. -John 6
When He offered Himself at the Passover as the true Lamb of God, He offered the perfect sacrifice:
25 Nor yet that he should offer himself often, as the high priest enters into the holy place every year with blood of others;
26 For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world has he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself. -Hebrews 9
As He offered Himself as the heavenly sacrifice, the purpose of the earthly examples, types, and shadows was fulfilled and clearly revealed. Therefore, there can be no further sacrifices, because the sacrifice is finished:
30 When Yahshua therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost. -John 19
God came in the flesh to accomplish what no earthly flesh could do. The secret is no longer a mystery:
16 And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached to the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory. -1 Timothy 3
Those who have their understanding opened, know that Yahshua fulfilled that which was written in the Scriptures:
45 Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures,
46 And said to them, Thus it is written, and thus it behooved the Messiah to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day:
47 And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. -Luke 24
It is now no secret what God has done.
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