Lent Poetry: I Am Israel In Egypt

During Lent last year I preached a series called Shadows of the Cross: Jesus in the Pentateuch. For Good Friday I wrote 5 poems/readings based off the sermons in the series. For Holy Week, I thought I’d share one with you each day.

I am Israel in Egypt.
Enslaved. Afflicted. Crying out.

I am Israel receiving God’s good word. Learning about the terror and tragedy of sin and gracious gift of substitution. God is justice and mercy.

Judgement is coming. My life is forfeit. The wages of sin is death. I am not my own.
All have sinned. All are under judgement. All must pay the ultimate price.
Rich and poor. Slave and free. Egyptian and Israelite. Man and woman. Our lives are forfeit.
But judgement is not the final word. There is a gift. Substitution.
Someone to die the death that I deserve.

I am Israel, choosing a lamb. The best of the best. Without defect or weakness.
A lamb without sin to cover my sin.
A lamb without weakness to bear my weakness.
A lamb without impurities to cover my impurities.
A perfect lamb to atone for my flaws and sin and evil.

I am Israel as that lamb is killed in my place.
His life is taken. My life is spared.
I am Israel as his blood is shed instead of mine. His blood is smeared instead of mine.
Painted on the doorframes of my home is His blood. My life is marked by His blood.
Stained with blood not my own.

Spared from the death I deserve.
Passed over.

I am Israel. Quickly roasting lamb. We cook in haste. We prepare in haste.
Bitter herbs like my bitter Egyptian life.
Bread with no time to rise. No time to wait.
Don’t save any leftovers. We won’t be here tomorrow.
We eat in haste.
Dressed for the road. Coat and shoes on. Bags packed. Ready to leave at a word.
I eat in faith. I eat believing that tonight will be my last night in Egypt.
Rescue is coming. No, rescue is here. Rescue is now.

I am Israel…. spilling the blood of the lamb.
I am Israel…. redeemed from slavery in Egypt.
I am Israel…. awaiting redemption from slavery to Sin.
I am Israel…. and I’m waiting for a new and better Passover Lamb.
I’m waiting for Jesus.


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