The story behind the 400 Lambs is found in the Book of Ezra.

It was 3rd Adar 516 BC – the end of an era and the beginning of a gorgeous season for celebration.  The Temple had just been rebuilt 70 years after its destruction by Nebuchadnezzar King of Babylon.  The destruction, repatriation and rebuilding of the place of worship were fulfillment of the Prophecy by Prophet Jeremiah that Jerusalem would be left desolate for 70 years because of the sins of the people.

Jerusalem had sat in silence since 586 BC while the Jews had mourned in Babylon.  Their joyful return in 539 BC was followed by the start of the rebuilding the following year. Their hopes were soon shattered by strenuous opposition from their enemies. This opposition culminated with the command by Cambyses King of Persia that all work should be halted. Work on the Temple came to a grinding halt in 529 BC, the very first year of his reign (Ezra 4).

Thank God for the Prophets Haggai and Zechariah who told Governor Zerubabel to recommence the work according to the revelations given by God. Of course, their enemies arrived quickly on the scene to halt the work. It was now 520 BC and the second year of the reign of Darius King of Persia, now known as Iran.  He had the Persian Archives searched and found that Cyrus the Great, the founder of Iran, had commanded the release of the Jews and rebuilding of the Temple in 539 BC. Yes, this is the same Iran that is the Jews’ greatest enemy today (Ezra 5 & 6).

 It took four years of hard labor, but the Temple was finally completed in 516 BC according to the prophecies spoken by Jeremiah almost 100 years before.

Now for the 400 Lambs.

They 400 Lambs were sacrificed in honor of the dedication of the Temple. Lambs represented an offering for sin as early in the Garden of Eden.  As their blood flowed, God looked down through the centuries to the day when  His Lamb Jesus would be crucified for the sins of the world.

Can 400 Lambs cleanse sins?

400 lambs could not even cleanse the sins of the nation.  John said, “behold the Lamb of God which takes away the sins of the world”.  Which Lamb do you prefer?