At noon, darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon… Mark 15:33 NIV
Three hours of darkness preceded Jesus’s last breath on the cross. All of Israel lay in darkness… It must have reminded many of what they had just remembered and recited on the night before as they celebrated the Passover.
The first 8 plagues endured by Egypt before the Passover were specifically directed at various Egyptian deities. But the ninth plague, while directed toward the Egyptian god Re, the sun god, was different—because Re symbolized the Pharaoh himself… and pharaoh pictures the hardhearted fallen angel named lucifer…
Three days of darkness descended on the Egyptians. But the Light remained shining on the Israelites. Darkness represents the enemy—ultimately Satan, while Light represents the One True God, the Light of the World…
On that Friday, as darkness covered all Israel, an alarming reality must have set in those who had spiritual eyes to see. Three hours of darkness… Three days of darkness… But this time, the darkness covered Israel!
In the ninth plague, the plague of darkness, Pharaoh defiantly denied Moses’ request that Israel could take their livestock with them— “no” to worship sacrifices, and “no” to wealth transferred…
Darkness himself does not want the Kingdom of God to Worship, nor does he want to let go of his wealth… But God’s Kingdom of Light and Life is far more powerful than Satan’s kingdom of darkness and death!
In the 10th plague, God required something that had not been required before—an act of faith. They (Israel, and any foreigners who had ears to hear) were required to take the Blood of the Innocent Substitute, a young unblemished lamb, and apply it to the door frames of their dwelling.
The Blood, applied in faith, did two things. It forced death to pass by, and for Life Himself to Passover—into their very dwellings—their homes—their lives! (Exodus 12:12; 23)
The tenth plague was the death of the firstborn not covered by the Blood. What a powerful picture of the necessity for all of us to have the Blood applied to our lives—by faith!
But there is more to the picture. In Israel, a time was coming when every Firstborn would be dedicated to God—and that the Priesthood would take the place of the Firstborn in being dedicated to God.
This all becomes important as we remember that Jesus is the Firstborn of all Creation and the Firstborn of the Resurrection, and that the Church is called “the Church of the Firstborn.”
This means that Jesus is the eternal God of Creation, that we are all Priests under the Headship of the Great High Priest, Jesus, and that we will, like Him, be resurrected!
CAN GOD PAINT A PICTURE, OR WHAT?! As thoughtful Israelites reflected on that dark day, many must have had at least an inkling that the picture of Passover and the Exodus was fulfilled in Jesus, who must be, therefore, the Messiah of Israel, and the Savior of the world!
Jesus is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! Jesus is the Light of the World! Jesus is the Firstborn of Creation and the Firstborn from the dead! The Blood of Jesus causes death to pass over us and allows for His presence to enter into us! In Jesus, we are called to Worship until darkness shudders in terror, and to understand that the wealth of satan’s kingdom will one day belong entirely to the people of God!