The Blood speaks of that, beloved, absolute separation unto God. Go back to the Old Testament for illustration. In the Book of Joshua, chapter 5, you have the people coming to Gilgal where the Lord, through Joshua, ordered the complete circumcising of Israel. All the males that had been born in the wilderness were circumcised at Gilgal and the Lord’s word was this: “This day (when it was done) have I rolled away the reproach of Egypt… wherefore the name of that place was called Gilgal,” which is “rolling.” “The Lord hath rolled away the reproach of Egypt” on the day of the circumcising, in the day of that symbolic act in the shedding and encircling of the precious Blood, the whole body of the flesh cut off, so Paul explains it in Colossians 2, “the putting off of the body of the flesh, in the circumcision of Christ.” The reproach of Egypt rolls away when that happens. What is “the reproach of Egypt”? What is the meaning of that? I wonder if you have noticed the persistent following of Egypt on the heels of Israel all the days of the wilderness. I do not mean literally, I mean spiritually. They were constantly looking back to Egypt. “Wherefore have ye brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness?” Even when Moses went up into the mount and Aaron made the calf and they danced to the calf and worshipped it, it was Egypt brought out in representation. What is it that Stephen tells us about it? I think he sums it all up in a word in Acts 7:39: “… and in their hearts turned back again into Egypt.”
Their hearts were in Egypt, and it was because their hearts were more than half in Egypt all the forty years, that there is such a sorry story; up and down; one day brighter, and the next day murmuring and complaining again. What a story it is. Whenever you read the account it seems that the bright patches are almost overlooked and the dark thing is kept in view. It is referred to in the New Testament. Paul writes to the Hebrews about it: their “carcases fell in the wilderness,” reminding them of the day of provocation in the wilderness when “your fathers tempted me…”; always coming back to this wretched failure. Why did they fail? Because their hearts were not wholly out of Egypt; because they had not recognized sufficiently nor apprehended adequately the meaning of the type of that precious Blood of the Lamb that was slain.
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