Christ Shedding His Blood Once for All Time
Whenever my Bible reading takes me through Leviticus, my heart aches regarding the previously established sacrifice of cattle, goats, and sheep for sin under the covenant God gave to Israel through Moses. Due to being an animal lover - it is so difficult for me when I read through any passage in the Old Testament in which sin required a sacrifice.
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Christ Shedding His Blood Once for All Time
By: Todd Knowles | Montgomery | AL |
Whenever my Bible reading takes me through Leviticus, my heart aches regarding the previously established sacrifice of cattle, goats, and sheep for sin under the covenant God gave to Israel through Moses.
Due to being an animal lover - it is so difficult for me when I read through any passage in the Old Testament in which sin required a sacrifice.
Further, while my dearest friends often hunt deer, I much prefer watching such magnificent creatures enjoy their lives - marveling at the wonder of God's creation.
Recently, it seemed the Lord was touching my heart about the horrible cost of sin, and that my own sin should cause me to ache, knowing what it cost our Precious Savior to once and for all pay for our sins.
This helped to bring a bit more enlightenment at why these Bible passages so deeply burden me.
Cleansing By Blood
It is vital to remember from Hebrews 9:22 - "And almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission," - King James Version (KJV).
The same verse from the New American Standard Bible 1995 (NASB1995) reads as follows:
"And according to the Law, one may almost say, all things are cleansed with blood, and without shedding of blood there is no forgiveness."
(NOTE: Most all my life, I have been used to hearing and thinking of the word "remission," and it is primarily found within the King James Version.)
This verse is stating that no sin can be forgiven without blood being shed for it.
It is therefore important to reflect that all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23).
Further, the wages of sin is death (Romans 6:23) - that is, our own death, both physically and spiritually.
Therefore, if God did not previously establish the practice of sacrificing animals to pay for sin, people would have had to die in order to pay for their sins – yet He is merciful.
Christ’s Payment in Full
But Hebrews 10 reminds us that such sacrifices were constant, due to the people continually sinning, and the fact that a single animal sacrifice could not fully pay for sins.
As a result, we read the following in Hebrews 10:1-18 (NASB1995):
1 For the Law, since it has only a shadow of the good things to come and not the very form of things, can never, by the same sacrifices which they offer continually year by year, make perfect those who draw near. 2 Otherwise, would they not have ceased to be offered, because the worshipers, having once been cleansed, would no longer have had consciousness of sins? 3 But in those sacrifices there is a reminder of sins year by year. 4 For it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins. 5 Therefore, when He comes into the world, He says,
“Sacrifice and offering You have not desired,
But a body You have prepared for Me;
6 In whole burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin You have taken no pleasure.
7 “Then I said, ‘Behold, I have come
(In the scroll of the book it is written of Me)
To do Your will, O God.’”
8 After saying above, “Sacrifices and offerings and whole burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin You have not desired, nor have You taken pleasure in them” (which are offered according to the Law), 9 then He said, “Behold, I have come to do Your will.” He takes away the first in order to establish the second. 10 By this will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.
11 Every priest stands daily ministering and offering time after time the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins; 12 but He, having offered one sacrifice for sins for all time, sat down at the right hand of God, 13 waiting from that time onward until His enemies be made a footstool for His feet. 14 For by one offering He has perfected for all time those who are sanctified. 15 And the Holy Spirit also testifies to us; for after saying,
16 “This is the covenant that I will make with them
After those days, says the Lord:
I will put My laws upon their heart,
And on their mind I will write them,”
He then says,
17 “And their sins and their lawless deeds
I will remember no more.”
18 Now where there is forgiveness of these things, there is no longer any offering for sin.
Now while we should grieve over sin we commit (as the Holy Spirit graciously convicts us in our spirit), and any hurt it may cause others, and the reminder of our Savior's ultimate price He paid to redeem us... we will also experience the struggle that Paul writes at the end of Romans 7 - and then rejoice in Romans 8:1-4 (NASB1995):
1 Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.
2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death.
3 For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh, 4 so that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.
...and the second half of Romans 6:23 states "the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord," (NASB1995).
Consequently, along with rejoicing that our sin is forgiven, we are now free to ask what we can do to be in the very center of our Heavenly Father's will -
As Paul writes in 2 Corinthians 5:9 (NASB1995):
9 Therefore we also have as our ambition, whether at home or absent, to be pleasing to Him.
Set Free to Serve Christ
Instead of the weary burden of offering sacrifices of innocent animals to cover our sins...we repent as we turn to Christ to accept His offering for us - and make Him Lord of our lives, always seeking to please Him in everything.
How wonderful that we have been set free for His purpose in our lives.
As Paul did, in Philippians 3:12, we are free to press on to lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus laid hold of us...
In other words...we are free to walk out His calling in our lives, something we could never do fully or completely prior to Christ Jesus setting us free from the bondage of sin.
Within a world where people constantly struggle to find a sense of justice, purpose for their own lives, and perhaps seek fulfillment, our Precious Savior gives that to us as we walk in Him…being truly set free.
The Lockman Foundation. (1960/1995). New American Standard Bible.
King James Version (KJV). Public Domain.