“…in the seventh month, on the tenth day of the month, ye shall afflict your souls, and do no work at all, whether it be one of your own country, or a stranger that sojourneth among you: For on that day shall the priest make an atonement for you, to cleanse you, that ye may be clean from all your sins before the LORD” Leviticus 16:29. “And the priests killed them [he goats], and they made reconciliation with their blood upon the altar, to make an atonement for all Israel: for the king commanded that the burnt offering and the sin offering should be made for all Israel” 2Chronicles 29:24.
When we turn back to the Old Testament of the Bible, we see that after sin entered into the world, God required the blood of animals for the atonement of the sins that men committed as we have also established in our previous issues along this study series. Israel continually shed the blood of beasts, but the blood of beasts could not take away sins- “For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins” Hebrews 10:4.. Israel sacrificed, but the blood of beasts could not make them perfect (Hebrews 10:1) or purge them of their evil ways, that is why they had to keep sacrificing them on and on.
Consequently, the Levitical priesthood had to keep on offering sacrifices- not just for the sins of the people but for their own sins, too. They had to sacrifice over and over again, year in and year out. A better sacrifice was therefore needed; A sacrifice with a perfect mediator, a sacrifice offered once and yet deliver all men from the guilt and power of sin once and for all.
In the Old Testament (after Adam’s original sin), God accepted the death of an animal as a substitute for the sinner. The animal’s shed blood was proof that one life had to be given for another. Life is precious and God places great value on each one of His created beings. This agreement demonstrated that, while blood symbolized death, it also showed that a life was spared. However, this was a temporary covenant. This blood needed to be repeated daily and yearly. God later send His only Son providing a new covenant, or New Testament through Jesus Christ. Jesus would die in the place of all sinners. His sacrifice fulfilled completely what the Old Testament covenant meant to. His blood would remove the sins of the world for all who put their faith in Him. This sacrifice would never have to be repeated; it is an eternal covenant.
About 600 years before the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ, God told his people, the children of Israel, that he was going to make a new covenant with them- “Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah: And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the LORD: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the LORD: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more” Jeremiah 31:31,34. God sent his Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, to take away the sin of the world once and for all. He is that better sacrifice that came to earth in the fullness of time. The Lord Jesus Christ is the perfect Lamb of God that shed his blood for us so that we could be saved from our sins that we have committed. It is the blood of Jesus that God requires now, not the blood of beasts. The blood of Jesus has the power to cleanse men from both the guilt and power of sin and it purges us all the way down to our very consciences.
The blood of Jesus is the blood of the everlasting covenant. It saves us for eternity, it delivers us from sin, it purges our consciences, it gives us power- power to overcome the flesh, the devil, and the world. The sacrifice of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, has completely abolished the system of animal sacrifice for ever. The blood of the animal sacrifices of the Old Testament only pictured what our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ would do when he shed his own blood on the cross. There is now no way to approach God but through the blood of Jesus. “Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved. In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace” Ephesians 1:5-7.
Christ Jesus came as a High Priest by a greater and more perfect tabernacle than that of the Levitical priesthood- Perfect Mediator- and not with the blood of beasts but with his own blood-blood that purges the conscience from dead works to serve the living God- “But Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building; Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place having obtained eternal redemption for us. For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh: How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance” Hebrews 9:11-15.
The Lord Jesus Christ-God manifested in the flesh-came to this earth to take away our sins. He lived a perfect life, was without sin, and died in our place so that we could live. He shed his blood to pay for our sins so that we can be saved and have everlasting life. Jesus Christ is the Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world (John 1:29), He is the perfect sacrifice for the sin of the world…
Also, the Bible made it clear to us that the precious blood of Jesus was shed one time for all, and the work of atonement and redemption was declared finished on the cross. The blood of animals had to be shed over and over, but the blood of Jesus was shed only one time. “But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God” Hebrews 10:12. “For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified” Hebrews 10:14. (Hebrews 7:27, Hebrews 9:28, Hebrews 10:10).
In our next issue, we will continue in this study considering the potency and the prevalence of the Blood of Jesus.
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