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THE CHARACTER OF THE BLOOD

by Dr. R. L. Hymers, Jr.

A sermon preached on Lord’s Day Morning, August 17, 2008
at the Baptist Tabernacle of Los Angeles

“When I see the blood, I will pass over you” (Exodus 12:13).


Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones often said that without real revival there is no hope for Christianity in the Western world. Listen carefully to his words about the churches in North America and Europe.

If you read the history of the Church before about 1830 or 1840, you will find that in many countries there used to be regular revivals of religion almost every ten years or so. It has not been like that. There has only been one major revival since 1859. Oh, we have passed through a barren period…We have passed through one of the most barren periods in the long history of the Church. We have been like the prodigal son in that far country, spending our time in the fields with the swine and living on nothing but husks. Yes, we have been in bondage, we have been in fear, we have suffered persecution and derision, and it is still going on. We are still in the wilderness. Do not believe anything that suggests that we are out of it, we are not. The Church is in the wilderness… The Christian Church is still so unhealthy, so confident in herself, so sure that she only needs to organize yet another effort, some further activity (D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, M.D., Revival, Crossway Books, 1987, pp. 129-130).

On the one hand, we have this emphasis on the Holy Spirit, this emphasis on an emotional feeling, this emphasis on what passes for “worship” and all manner of false doctrine shouted at the swaying, palpitating hordes. On the other hand, we see an emphasis on doctrine and Bible study. Doctrine for the sake of doctrine. Bible study for the sake of Bible study, ever learning but never able to come to reality, never able to come to a personal knowledge of the truth, never seeing revival, holding a Revival theology, and yet experiencing no revival itself! Just dry-as-dust theology, taught but not caught! Learning but not burning! Teaching but not preaching! Informing but not converting! On yet another hand, we see the enthroning of methodology. We are told that if we can only get the method right, church growth for the sake of drawing crowds, “progressive,” purpose-driven sociological manipulation, propelled by the force of rock music, and possibility thinking, and positive thinking pop-psychology, will fill our needs. And yet, with heavy hearts, we must admit, with Dr. Lloyd-Jones, that “We are still in the wilderness. Do not believe anything that suggests that we are out of it.”

When true revival finally comes, as I am certain it finally will, it will not come by any man-made method, nor will it come by any “new wrinkle,” nor with any “progressive” message, nor with correct but dry theology. When true revival finally comes, as I am certain it finally will, it will be ushered in with the same old message that accompanied every true revival across the ages of time,

“When I see the blood, I will pass over you” (Exodus 12:13).

In the book of Acts and in their Epistles, the Apostles came back again and again to the great revival theme of the Blood of Christ! The Apostles said,

There is justification through the Blood of Christ (Romans 5:9).

The Apostles said,

There is propitiation through the Blood of Christ
      (Romans 3:25).

The Apostles said,

We are redeemed by the Blood of Christ (Ephesians 1:7).

The Apostles said,

Christ has made peace through the Blood of his cross
      (Colossians 1:20).

The Apostles said,

We are redeemed with the precious Blood of Christ
      (I Peter 1:19).

The Apostles said,

We are cleansed from all sin by the Blood of Christ
      (I John 1:7).

The Apostles said,

Christ has washed us from our sins in His own Blood
      (Revelation 1:5).

That is the message of revival! That is the type of sermons that will reach the heart! That is the discourse that will open blind eyes, and convert lost souls! And that is the only message which can do these things to hardened, totally depraved sinners when set on fire by the Spirit of our God!

Lord, now indeed I find
   Thy power and Thine alone,
Can change the leper’s spots,
   And melt the heart of stone.
Jesus paid it all, All to Him I owe;
   Sin had left a crimson stain,
He washed it white as snow.
   (“Jesus Paid It All” by Elvina M. Hall, 1820-1889).

“When I see the blood, I will pass over you” (Exodus 12:13).

On the night before they left slavery in Egypt, God told all the Israelites to take the blood of a lamb in a bason, to dip the leaves of a hyssop plant in that blood, and to strike that blood on the top post and the two side posts of the front door of their houses. And God said,

“The blood shall be to you for a token [a sign] upon the houses where ye 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 12:13).

I preached on that text last night in a sermon titled “The Passover Blood” (August 16, 2008, Saturday evening). But I ran out of time and so, this morning, I am bringing a second sermon on this all-important theme. Here are four points I was not able to fully cover last night.

I. First, it was the blood of a lamb without blemish.

God told them, concerning the lamb they were to slay for the Passover,

“Your lamb shall be without blemish” (Exodus 12:5).

Again and again we must publish and proclaim the fact that our Lord Jesus Christ,

“The Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world” (John 1:29)

was a Lamb “without blemish,” without any flaw, without the slightest impurity.

The lamb without blemish can only point to Jesus Christ, the true Lamb of God. Oh, yes, He was tempted, but the Bible says three more words. It says He

“was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin” (Hebrews 4:15).

Those three words, “yet without sin,” mark the difference between the Lamb without blemish and all the sinful offspring of Adam!

Of all the men who have ever lived on this earth, Christ, who is both man and God in hypostatic union, is the only one who never sinned. As the Apostle Paul put it,

“Who knew no sin” (II Corinthians 5:21).

Christ is the God-man, “who knew no sin,” who was “without sin.” Or, as the Apostle Peter put it,

“Who did no sin, neither was guile [any deceit] found in his mouth” (I Peter 2:22).

Behold the “lamb without blemish,” the sinless Son of God! He dies, the just for the unjust! His Blood can wash away your every sin, because it is sinless Blood! No other blood can cleanse you! It must be the Blood of the God-man, the Lamb “without blemish.” That alone is the sin-cleansing Blood of the Lord Jesus Christ.

“When I see the blood, I will pass over you” (Exodus 12:13).

II. Second, it was blood that turned away the wrath of God.

“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”
      (Exodus 12:23).

It points typically to

“Christ Jesus: whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood” (Romans 3:24-25).

“Propitiation” speaks of satisfying the justice of God, a payment for our sins, an appeasement of God’s wrath.

The Israelites living in those houses were as much sinners as were the Egyptians,

“For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God”
      (Romans 3:23).

Why, then, did the judgment of God fall on the Egyptians but not on them? The one and only reason was this – the sins of those Israelites were propitiated, appeased, paid for – by that blood!

“When I see the blood, I will pass over you” (Exodus 12:13).

Martin Luther said,

God from eternity has ordained and set forth Christ as the propitiation for our sins, but only for those who believe in Him (Martin Luther, Th.D., Commentary on Romans 3:25).

You must come to Christ, and believe in Him, because God said,

“When I see the blood, I will pass over you” (Exodus 12:13).

III. Third, it was blood that was effective on one condition.

Spurgeon asked,

What says one, “Do you preach a conditional salvation?” Yes I do, there is one condition, “When I see the blood, I will pass over you.” What a blessed condition! It does not say, when you see the blood, but when I see it. Thine eye of faith may be so dim, that thou canst not see the blood of Christ. Ay, but God’s eye is not dim; He can see it, yea he must see it; for Christ in heaven is always presenting his blood before his Father’s face. The Israelite could not see the blood; he was inside the house; he could not see what was on the lintel and the doorpost; but God could see it; and this is the only condition of the sinner’s salvation – God’s seeing the blood; not your seeing it…Fall on your knees in prayer, ye doubting souls, and let this be your plea – “Lord, have mercy on me for the blood’s sake. I cannot see it as I could desire, but Lord thou seest it, and thou hast said, ‘When I see it, I will pass over you.’ Lord, thou seest it this day, pass over my sin, and forgive me for its dear sake alone” (C. H. Spurgeon, “The Blood,” The New Park Street Pulpit, volume V, Pilgrim Publications, 1981 reprint, p. 31).

“When I see the blood, I will pass over you” (Exodus 12:13).

IV. Fourth, it was blood alone that spared them.

How often the Bible speaks of this! Leviticus 17:11 says,

“It is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul”
      (Leviticus 17:11).

Christ said,

“For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins” (Matthew 26:28).

The Apostle Paul said,

“Feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood” (Acts 20:28).

Again, Paul said,

“Without shedding of blood is no remission” (Hebrews 9:22).

The Apostle John said,

“The blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin”
      (I John 1:7).

Again, John said,

“Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood” (Revelation 1:5).

And Dr. W. A. Criswell said,

This is God’s way for our salvation. This is God’s answer to our sins. This is the Lord’s reply to Job when Job cried, “I have sinned, O God, what shall I do?” This is the answer to the cry of Macbeth, “Will all great Neptune’s ocean wash this blood clean from my hands?” This is the reply of the…old-time hymn that our forefathers used to sing:

What can wash away my sin?
Nothing but the blood of Jesus;
What can make me whole again?
Nothing but the blood of Jesus.

Oh! precious is the flow
That makes me white as snow;
No other fount I know,
Nothing but the blood of Jesus.

(W. A. Criswell, Ph.D., With a Bible in My Hand, Broadman Press, 1978, pp. 79-80).

“When I see the blood, I will pass over you” (Exodus 12:13).

And so my question to you is this – are you washed in the blood of the Lamb? Have you come to Jesus? Has His precious Blood cleansed your sins? Let us stand and sing hymn number 2 on your song sheet. Sing it good and strong, and think about the words as we sing.

Have you been to Jesus for the cleansing power?
Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb?
Are you fully trusting in His grace this hour?
Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb?
Are you washed in the blood,
In the soul-cleansing blood of the Lamb?
Are your garments spotless? Are they white as snow?
Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb?
   (“Are You Washed in the Blood?” by Elisha A. Hoffman, 1839-1929).

(END OF SERMON)
You can read Dr. Hymers' sermons each week on the Internet
at www.realconversion.com. Click on “Sermon Manuscripts.”

Scripture Read Before the Sermon by Dr. Kreighton L. Chan: Exodus 12:1-13, 22-23.
Solo Sung Before the Sermon by Mr. Benjamin Kincaid Griffith:
“When I See the Blood” (by John Foote, 19th century).


THE OUTLINE OF

THE CHARACTER OF THE BLOOD

by Dr. R. L. Hymers, Jr.

“When I see the blood, I will pass over you” (Exodus 12:13).

(Romans 5:9; 3:25; Ephesians 1:7; Colossians 1:20;
I Peter 1:19; I John 1:7; Revelation 1:5)

I.   First, it was the blood of a lamb without blemish, Exodus 12:5;
John 1:29; Hebrews 4:15; II Corinthians 5:21; I Peter 2:22.

II.  Second, it was blood that turned away the wrath of God,
Exodus 12:23; Romans 3:24-25, 23.

III. Third, it was blood that was effective on one condition,
Exodus 12:13.

IV. Fourth, it was blood alone that spared them, Leviticus 17:11;
Matthew 26:28; Acts 20:28; Hebrews 9:22; I John 1:7;
Revelation 1:5.