LIVING WITH A CONFIDENT FAITH IN CHRIST
Jesus Provided the Only Forgiveness You Need
Jerry A Collins
vWhy was Jesusí sacrifice a permanent one?
What is the difference between Jesusí and OT sacrifices?
What forgiveness does Jesusí sacrifice provide for us?
I have a permanent scar on my pinky finger that is the result of my Grandmother closing the door on it when I was a toddler. The tip of that finger was nearly severed and to this day the nail itself grows in an awkward position. For years all I had to do was raise my hand and wave that pinky finger and my grandmother would nearly be in tears as she was reminded of what she did to me. A cruel thing to do I know but it always won her sympathy whenever I wanted something. Imagine gathering together with other believers to worship, pray, sing and study only as a regular reminder of our sins and to keep alive that sense of sinfulness in our lives. Like reminding my grandmother everytime she saw my pinky, we would have the same sense of remorse everytime we gathered together. That is what it was like under the OT sacrificial system for the people of Israel. Sacrifices were perpetual reminders of their sinfulness. The writer wants us to know that Jesus sacrifice though has made all the difference.
1. JESUS SACRIFICE REACHED TO THE HEAVENS 24-28
Heaven was effected by the sacrificial death of Jesus Christ.
(1) Jesus represents sinful people in heaven vs 24. Appointed as the High Priest of this new Blood Covenant, He represents sinful people in the presence of God. So His sacrifice had to be greater than that which allowed entrance into only a man-made sanctuary here on earth that was only a copy of the original one in heaven.
(2) Jesus sacrifice is sufficient in heaven vs 25-26a. If the offering of Christ is sufficient it need not be repeated. The yearly day of Atonement the people of Israel saw the High Priest walk into the Holy of Holies but they did not see what happened in there. He e eventually came out to tell them the offering had been paid. It was a day of confession of guilt before God and when the scape goat was let loose into the wilderness it symbolized the pardoning of the sins of the people and the acceptance of the sacrifice made that day for the next 12 months. Sacrifice would then have to be made all over again vs 25. Now if Jesus offering was not sufficient then like the OT sacrifices, would have required Him to die many times since the creation of the world vs 26a.
(3) Jesus offering did away with sinís guilt once and for all in heaven vs. 26b. The results of that sacrifice are perpetual but the sacrifice is not. What the old arrangement could not do, fully cleanse our guilt, the offering of Jesus did in Godís presence and this is permanent for each successive generation until the end of all things. So the sufficiency of Jesus offering was not only an earthly thing but a heavenly one. Not only temporal but eternal. It is not dependent upon our work but His work.
(4) Jesus sacrifice means we can look forward to His coming for us from heaven vs. 27-28. After death there is to be judgment. If that is the case then no more offerings for your sin are possible. Your guilt will go with you and the judgment it deserves. However, this danger is overcome by Jesus sacrifice for our sins. The repetition of once stresses the finality of death and judgment to follow in contrast to Jesus death and salvation to follow. His first advent was to bear sins away but His second will be for salvation not to bear sin. We can eagerly anticipate that. In other words, our hope is not as another reminder of our sin, but an anticipation of our full and complete salvation.
2. JESUS SACRIFICE REMOVES OUR GUILT AND PROVIDES FREE ACCESS TO GOD 10:1-10
After having shown the completeness of the one single priestly act of Christ in contrast with the repeated work of the High Priest on the Day of Atonement, we will now see how sufficient that sacrifice was to remove our guilt before God and restore our relationship with him.
(1) The OT sacrifices were insufficient to perfect us 1-4 The necessity of repetition of these sacrifices proved that they were in and of themselves insufficient to remove sinís guilt permanently vs 1. If there was perfection sacrifice would have ceased. These sacrifices only revealed a need they could not satisfy. The lawís function was to keep alive their sense of sin. Instead of enabling them to achieve a guiltless standing before God, the yearly sacrificial ritual served only as an annual reminder of sins since animal blood has no power to take away sins vs 2-4.
(2) Christís sacrifice was sufficient to perfect us 5-10 The quote of Psa 40:6-8 shows that only obedience brings perfection and since Christ obeyed he can impart perfection to us. These are the words of the one who would do what God really wanted. It prophetically anticipated some of the words of Christ at His first coming vs 5-7. Jesus coming was voluntary to do the will of His Father. The result (vs 8-9) was that thru His obedience He established the will of God in this matter and ultimately satisfied him which the OT sacrificial system could never do. So we are now set apart to God no longer guilty but free because of the once for all sacrifice of Jesus Christ. No one is guiltless before God unless He has been cleansed by Jesus blood sacrifice. Only Jesus can satisfy the righteous demands of God that wipes the guilt of our sin away.
3. JESUS SACRIFICE GIVES US FULL ACCEPTANCE IN GODíS PRESENCE 11-13
The Levite priests could never sit down on the job since their sacrificial service was never completed. There was always work yet to be done vs 11. In contrast to the many and constant is Christís work once and complete. Sitting at Godís rite hand is both a signal that His sacrifice was offered for all time and also that He can now confidently await final victory over His enemies vs 12-13. So by a single sacrifice in contrast to the many offered by the priests we are sanctified and approach God in full acceptance without any guilt.
4. JESUS SACRIFICE PROVIDES COMPLETE FORGIVENESS 15-18
This quote from Jer 31:33-34 is testimony given by the HS and is a promise that God not only forgives but He forgets our sin that the Day of Atonement never provided. God promises with this new covenant to wipe our sin out of His memory. Not only is there no more offering for sin, and no more remembrance of sin but there is not more conscience of sin. Since Christ brot perfection and He granted such complete forgiveness that the sins cannot even be remembered what need is there of Levitical sacrifices now? If Xian Jews go back to Judaism, they are going back to a system that can never cleanse them permanently.