IN THE LIKENESS OF SINFUL FLESH

Rom 8:3   For what the Law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, on account of sin:  He condemned sin in the flesh.

1Tim 3:16   Great is the mystery of godliness:  God was manifested in the flesh. . . .

We often think of the Lord Jesus as the Lamb of God, and as the Lion of the Tribe of Judah.  These are descriptions of Him which we have in the N.T., giving light to O.T. Scriptures.  We think of the lion as symbolic of kingly authority and as a mighty warrior.  The lamb depicts meekness, innocence, dependence upon a shepherd.

As we enter into the most holy of the holy-days within Israel’s religion which YHVH God gave her, what we have before us are two goats:  sacrificially clean animals; kosher for eating; but which have no place in the Kingdom of God (Mt 25:31-46).  Goats are too independent and selfish:  they do not feel any loyalty to their shepherd, but take advantage of the shepherd’s guidance, protection, and provision; goats will eat the food of the sheep and waste the time of the shepherd trying to bring them under discipline while also trying to take care of the sheep.

We could say that the Lion emptied Himself of His fierce countenance to come to us in the humility and utter dependency of a Lamb, but was willing to clothe Himself in the likeness of a Goat – in the likeness of sinful flesh.  In the eyes of those in religious and political power, the Messiah Yeshua did not entrust Himself to their authority and teaching:  He was one from among them, but as a goat in their judgment according to outward appearance.  But from God the Father’s righteous judgment, His Son was perfectly blameless:  the Lamb of God who came to take away sin and sins through being judged a criminal and a deceiver.

Lev 16:5-10   from the congregation of the children of Israel; two goats:  one unto YHVH as a sin offering; one presented alive before YHVH with all Israel’s sins to be a scapegoat

From God’s covenant perspective, Israel and the Jewish people are loved for the fathers’ sake. . .but they/we have acted contrary to His love – we have not been whole-heartedly faithful to Him.  At best, we have been as goats:  clean but sinful.

The Lord Jesus came in the likeness of sinful flesh – although the perfect Lamb – to condemn sin in the flesh.  No flesh shall glory before God and live!  Truly this is a mystery that is great!

Heb 10:19-39   Hold fast to the confession of our hope without wavering, in the love and in the fear of God, that we may receive the promise of the Lord’s coming and of the resurrection of our own mortal bodies.

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