Names of God: Jesus as Lamb

Jesus…The Lamb of God
by Bonnie Patterson


Cold winds whipped across the frozen South Dakota Badlands as I experienced my first early Easter sunrises. Ranchers and their families stood huddling around as my minister dad gave a brief sunrise meditation.  I remember the golden sun popping over the unearthly horizon of the Badlands as we headed back to the parking lot within the boundaries of the Badlands National Monument.  Soon we all rejoined in the basement of the Interior, South Dakota Presbyterian Church to thaw out over mugs of hot chocolate and fill up on pancakes the church women cooked.  Many of those ranchers raised Hereford cattle but there were some sheep in the mix, too. So I was familiar with the characteristics of little lambs.

Jesus is referred to as the Lamb of God in Scripture:

“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

“…God paid a ransom…it was the precious blood of Christ, the sinless, spotless Lamb of God.”
—1 Peter 1:18, 19

“…They are the ones whose names were not written in the Book of Life before the world was made—the Book that belongs to the Lamb who was slaughtered.”
—Revelation 13:8

From these verses what do we derive about the characteristics of Jesus as the Lamb of God?

*Takes away the sin of the world
*The Book of Life belongs to the Lamb of God

The word John used in “Behold!” is a term expressing awe, wonderment, and exclamation.  Charles Spurgeon wrote that “There was nothing of greater wonder ever seen than that God Himself should provide the Lamb for the burnt offering….that He should provide the delight of His heart to die for us.”

Look steadily at, behold, this Lamb of God…look at Him in wonder and with eternal gratitude!  Nothing else in all the world compares to beholding Jesus, the Lamb of God!


None Other Lamb

None other Lamb, none other Name,
None other hope in Heav’n or earth or sea,
None other hiding place from guilt and shame,
None beside Thee!

My faith burns low, my hope burns low;
Only my heart’s desire cries out in me
By the deep thunder of its want and woe,
Cries out to Thee.

Lord, Thou art Life, though I be dead;
Love’s fire Thou art, however cold I be:
Nor Heav’n have I, nor place to lay my head,
Nor home, but Thee.
—Christina Rossetti

Listening Through Lent: We Stand Forgiven

Oh, to see the dawn
Of the darkest day:
Christ on the road to Calvary.
Tried by sinful men,
Torn and beaten, then
Nailed to a cross of wood.
This the power of the cross:
Christ became sin for us;
Took the blame, bore the wrath–
We stand forgiven at the cross.
Oh, to see the pain
Written on Your face, 
Bearing the awesome weight of sin.
Every bitter thought,
Every evil deed
Crowning Your bloodstained brow.
Now the daylight flees;
Now the ground beneath
Quakes as its Maker bows His head.
Curtain torn in two, 
Dead are raised to life;
“Finished!” the victory cry.
Oh, to see my name
Written in the wounds,
For through Your suffering I am free.
Death is crushed to death;
Life is mine to live,
Won through Your selfless love.
(Final Refrain)
This, the power of the cross:
Son of God–slain for us.
What a love! What a cost!
We stand forgiven at the cross.
~Keith Getty and Stuart Townend “The Power of the Cross”
I love pictures.  This hymn is full of poignant pictures.  And the music Keith Getty and Stuart Townend have written for the words add great power to these already powerful words.
Good Friday.
“It is finished!”
Hear the dying Savior cry,
the voice of love and mercy sounds aloud from Calvary.
Son of God–slain for us.
What a love! What a cost!
We stand forgiven at the cross.
Is there any better news than that?
~Barbara Hoelle

Listening Through Lent: I Will Bring You Home

Though you are homeless
Though you’re alone
I will be your home
Whatever’s the matter
Whatever’s been done
I will be your home
I will be your home
I will be your home
In this fearful fallen place
I will be your home
When time reaches fullness
When I move my hand
I will bring you home
Home to your own place
In a beautiful land
I will bring you home
I will bring you home
I will bring you home
From this fearful fallen place
I will bring you home
I will bring you home
~Michael Card

This song, sung each year at our Chapel’s Tenebrae service,
is a message long awaited
through the bright darkness of Lent
and the midnight of Good Friday.
It is Christ’s message to each of us:
when we ask to be remembered,
when we truly and wholly ask for forgiveness
for whatever is the matter,
for whatever we have done,we find our only hope and comfort is in Him.
He brings us home.
Homeless no longer, but homeful and hopeful.


Listening Through Lent: Like Fruit on the Vine

The cup and the loaf
You beckon me close
to commune
Like fruit on the vine
crushed into wine
You were bruised
Broken and torn
crowned with scorn
Poured out for all

All my sin
All my shame
All my secrets
All my chains
Lamb of God
Great is your love
Your blood covers it all

I taste and I drink
You satisfy me
With your love
Your goodness flows down
and waters dry ground
like a flood
Let mercy rain
Saving grace
Poured out for all

My sin, not in part
You cover it all,
You cover it all
Not in part,
But the whole
You cover it all,
You cover it all
It’s nailed to the cross.
You cover it all
You cover it all
And I bear it no more
You cover it all.
~Allie LaPointe and David Moffitt

On this Maundy Thursday
we are called to draw near Him,
to gather together among the
hungry and thirsty
to the Supper He has prepared.
He washes the dirt off our feet;
we look away, mortified.
He serves us from Himself;
we fret about whether
we are worthy.
We are not.

Starving and parched,
grimy and weary,
hardly presentable
to be guests at His table,
we made worthy only because
He has made us so.


Listening Through Lent: Thorn-Cursed Ground


Seems the sorrow untold, as you look down the road
At the clamoring crowd drawing near
Feel the heat of the day, as you look down the way
Hear the shouts of Hosanna the King

Oh, daughter of Zion your time’s drawing near
Don’t forsake Him, oh don’t pass it by
On the foal of a donkey as the prophets had said
Passing by you, He rides on to die

Come now little foal, though you’re not very old
Come and bear your first burden bravely
Walk so softly upon all the coats and the palms
Bare the One on your back oh so gently

Midst the shouting so loud and the joy of the crowd
There is One who is riding in silence
For He knows the ones here will be fleeing in fear
When their shepherd is taken away

Soon the thorn cursed ground will bring forth a crown
And this Jesus will seem to be beaten
But He’ll conquer alone both the shroud and the stone
And the prophesies will be completed
On the foal of a donkey as the prophets had said
Passing by you He rides on to die
~Michael Card


Facing ahead to
a week of seeing friends struggling,
a week facing our own fears of vulnerability,
a week where thorns seem more prevalent than blossoms~~

We must remember what He did that week long ago
to conquer the shroud and the stone
makes all the difference
for us all.

This week ends our living for self only to die,
and begins our dying to self in order to live.
~Emily Gibson




Listening Through Lent: A Strong Young Tree

I saw a tree by the riverside one day as I walked along.
Straight as an arrow and pointing to the sky
and growing tall and strong.
“How do you grow so straight and tall?”
I said to my riverside tree.
This is the song that my tree friend sang to me.
I’ve got roots growing down to the water,
I’ve got leaves growing up to the sunshine,
and the fruit
I bear is a sign of the life in me.
I am shade from the hot summer sundown.
I am nest for the birds of the heaven.
I’m becoming what the maker
of trees has meant me to be:
A strong young tree.
I saw a tree in the wintertime, when snow lay on the ground.
Straight as an arrow and pointing to the sky
and the winter winds blew all around.
“How do you grow so straight and tall ?”
I said to my wintertime tree.
This is the song that my tree friend sang to me.
I saw a tree in the city streets, where buildings blocked the sun.
Green and lovely I could see it gave joy to everyone.
“How do you grow in the city streets?” I said to
my downtown tree.
This is the song that my tree friend sang to me:

~Ken Medema

This song is about a tree that grows through the seasons.  I like this song because it has a nice tune.  The tree grows strong just like us growing strong and trusting in Christ.
~Peter Tamminga (soon to be ten years old)