Once and For All | Part 3: It’s About Jesus
April 16, 2021
April 16, 2021
We’ve looked at the Law’s solution to humanity’s sin problem, but none of it was actually paying the debt for sin. It was all a symbolic ritual pointing to a moment in history in which God would provide the perfect priest and the perfect sacrifice who would sacrifice His own blood on the Mercy Seat …
- who would quite literally take the sin of all mankind and
- quite literally remove it from us as far as east is from the west and
- quite literally pay the debt for sin and
- quite literally be the expression of God’s justice and grace at the same time for all time.
19 Therefore, brothers and sisters, since we have boldness to enter the sanctuary through the blood of Jesus—20 he has inaugurated for us a new and living way through the curtain (that is, through his flesh)—21 and since we have a great high priest over the house of God, 22 let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed in pure water. Hebrews 10:19-22
Because Jesus has now done what He has done, once and for all, our relationship with God is radically changed for the better, which has very practical implications for our lives today. Let me show you two.
First, enter with confidence. Look at verses 19 and 22.
19 Therefore, brothers and sisters, since we have boldness to enter the sanctuary through the blood of Jesus …
22 let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith …
Notice the difference in the way that we can now approach God compared to Aaron and the people in Leviticus 16.
1. Our approach to God is confident and joyous; theirs was tentative and fearful.
2. We are urged always to ‘draw near’; they were frequently exhorted to keep their distance.
3. Only the appointed high priest could enter ‘the holiest of all’ and even then only on one day a year; here all Christians are urged to come in any moment of trial with full assurance in being accepted and heard.
Second, enter with sincerity. Look at verse 22.
22 let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed in pure water.
In Old Testament times, the serving priest had to wash himself thoroughly and only then could he enter the holy place. He would put on “pure” clothing for the ritual and when he got done, he would burn those clothes. The same thing was true of the man who walked the goat out into the wilderness and left him there. He wore “pure” clothing as well, and when he came back he took it all off, burned it, bathed himself outside the city, and then and only then was he allowed to come back in.
Jesus’ death accomplished that for all of us.
Christians do not place their confidence in external ritual, but in a confession of Christ who actually paid the debt and removed our sin. Therefore, when Christian believers come into God’s presence, it is with a sense of concern not about external washing, but about heart purity.
Heart work is sincere work. Exterior work is superficial work.
Rob is Teaching Pastor at Blackman Baptist Church.