“So the soldiers came, and broke the legs of the first man and of the other who was crucified with Him; but coming to Jesus, when they saw that He was already dead, they did not break His legs. But one of the soldiers pierced His side with a spear, and immediately blood and water came out. For these things came to pass to fulfill the Scripture, ‘NOT A BONE OF HIM SHALL BE BROKEN.’ And again another Scripture says, ‘THEY SHALL LOOK ON HIM WHOM THEY PIERCED.'” John 19:32-34,36,37
All through the Old Testament we find foreshadowing (also called “types”) of the coming Messiah, which were ultimately fulfilled in Jesus Christ.
One of those is the Passover Lamb which was sacrificed so that the death angel would pass over each house where the blood had been applied to the doorposts.
One of the commands concerning the Passover lamb was:
“Nor are you to break any bone of it.” Exodus 12:46 (also found in Numbers 9:12)
This foreshadowed what we read in the John 19 passage above.
The Jewish leaders had asked Pilate, the Roman governor, that the legs of the three men on the cross be broken so their bodies could be taken care of before the Sabbath arrived. (Those who were crucified needed their legs to keep pushing their bodies up so they could breathe. When their legs were broken, they couldn’t push themselves up anymore, and they would die of suffocation.) Pilate gave his consent, but God overruled with His Son, for when the soldiers arrived, Jesus, the Passover Lamb, was already dead, so they did not need to break His legs.
So, they did not break His legs, as Scripture had foretold!
John the Baptist had also proclaimed at the beginning of Jesus’ ministry,
“Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.” John 1:29
The blood of the original Passover lambs had to be applied to the door frames of the houses for deliverance to be obtained by those inside. It was applied by those who believed God and wanted to obey Him. All those who did not believe and obey were visited by the death angel.
Likewise, the blood of Jesus must be figuratively applied to the “doors” of our hearts by faith in His finished work on the cross for us to receive deliverance from the judgment we deserve for our sins. He took our punishment, but we need to accept it by faith.
Have you believed this? Have you received His deliverance for which He lovingly paid such a high price? If so, do you still value His gift that He paid so dearly to purchase for you?
May the Lord help us this Good Friday to remember the goodness of His love, proved to us through His sacrifice, and of His deliverance that He purchased for all who will believe.