Hebrews – God’s Action in Jesus
We want everything to be perfect when we are planning a wedding, a family reunion, or any event where many will gather and celebrate. We tend to the details. We create ways that will enhance the experience of being together. We also plan ways to avoid pitfalls that might occur at the event. We try to think of every scenario and have a plan for it. We also have a plan B if plan A is failing. We are mere humans, however, and nothing we do is absolutely perfect.
Praise God! HE is perfect. I love this sentence in our next passage that sums up God’s action in Jesus to save us from our imperfection:
“It was a perfect sacrifice by a perfect person to perfect some very imperfect people.”
Wow. We are not perfect. God knew that. God made a way. Now, by repenting, we are perfectly forgiven by the sacrifice of Jesus Christ our Lord. Done. Finished. Complete.
Hebrews 10, The Message
The Sacrifice of Jesus
10 1-10 The old plan was only a hint of the good things in the new plan. Since that old “law plan” wasn’t complete in itself, it couldn’t complete those who followed it. No matter how many sacrifices were offered year after year, they never added up to a complete solution. If they had, the worshipers would have gone merrily on their way, no longer dragged down by their sins. But instead of removing awareness of sin, when those animal sacrifices were repeated over and over they actually heightened awareness and guilt. The plain fact is that bull and goat blood can’t get rid of sin. That is what is meant by this prophecy, put in the mouth of Christ:
You don’t want sacrifices and offerings year after year;
you’ve prepared a body for me for a sacrifice.
It’s not fragrance and smoke from the altar
that whet your appetite.
So I said, “I’m here to do it your way, O God,
the way it’s described in your Book.”
When he said, “You don’t want sacrifices and offerings,” he was referring to practices according to the old plan. When he added, “I’m here to do it your way,” he set aside the first in order to enact the new plan—God’s way—by which we are made fit for God by the once-for-all sacrifice of Jesus.
11-18 Every priest goes to work at the altar each day, offers the same old sacrifices year in, year out, and never makes a dent in the sin problem. As a priest, Christ made a single sacrifice for sins, and that was it! Then he sat down right beside God and waited for his enemies to cave in. It was a perfect sacrifice by a perfect person to perfect some very imperfect people. By that single offering, he did everything that needed to be done for everyone who takes part in the purifying process. The Holy Spirit confirms this:
This new plan I’m making with Israel
isn’t going to be written on paper,
isn’t going to be chiseled in stone;
This time “I’m writing out the plan in them,
carving it on the lining of their hearts.”
I’ll forever wipe the slate clean of their sins.
Once sins are taken care of for good, there’s no longer any need to offer sacrifices for them.
DO WE REALLY GET THIS? I am reminded of a chorus we sang as kids…
“Gone, gone, gone, gone
Yes my sins are gone,
Now my soul is free
And in my heart’s a song;
Buried in the deepest sea
Yes, that’s good enough for me–
I shall live eternally
My sins are G-O-N-E gone!
Let us celebrate and live like the redeemed people of God we are! NO, we are not perfect, but we are perfectly forgiven. DON’T forget that…
Dear Heavenly Father,
Thank you, thank you, thank you is not enough for what you have done for us through the sacrifice of Your Perfect Son, Jesus Christ! But we accept, repent, and grow in our faithfulness and love back to you. We are blessed to be blessings to you. Help us to remember and celebrate the new life we have because of the new covenant you provided.
In Jesus Name, Amen