Thursday, August 02, 2007

NOTHING but the Blood

In June, Bino wrote a post called "Dismantle the confession booths." Using only scripture, Bino covered a lot of things, including the complete forgiveness of sins that we have in Christ Jesus, as well as our justification, salvation, completeness, righteousness and many other things that we have freely received by faith in Christ Jesus. All of this is made possible by one thing, and one thing only - the blood of Jesus. I've personally printed out his list and I'm using it as a means of memorizing and meditating upon some great truths that I want to be more and more grounded in.

I've often heard Christians worry out loud that we've become "desensitized" to sin. I hear them say things like, "We hardly blush anymore." Well, I think that's very true and I don't want to discount that at all, but I think we've become even more desensitized to something that is far, far more important. We can easily sing "What can wash away my sin? Nothing but the blood of Jesus." Perhaps we've sung it so much that we've become numb to the far-reaching aspects of the truth it holds.

In fact, it's not that the blood of Jesus can wash away our sin. It did wash away our sin, once and for all!
To Him who loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood, and has made us kings and priests to His God and Father, to Him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen. (Rev 1:5-6)

But you were washed , but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God. (1 Cor 6:11)
Past tense. We have been washed - completely!

Hebrews 9-13 deals a lot with blood. And a very, very important point is made in Heb 9:22. "Without shedding of blood there is no remission" (of sin). It was only with blood that sin could be atoned for under the Old Covenant. The blood of bulls and goats was a necessary sacrifice in order to atone for the sins of the people. But there were problems with this. For one, all it did was to "atone for" or "cover" sins, but it didn't actually take away the sin of the people. In fact, "in those sacrifices there is a reminder of sins every year." (Heb 10:3). How about that? A system in which your sins are not actually removed, but in fact reminds you of your sins! "For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats could take away sins." (Heb 10:4).

But what the blood of bulls and goats could not do, Jesus Himself did with His own blood. John the Baptist prophesied, "Behold the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world." This is no small thing!
Heb 9:12-15
Not with the blood of goats and calves, but with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption. For if the blood of bulls and goats and the ashes of a heifer, sprinkling the unclean, sanctifies for the purifying of the flesh, how much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?
It's not through fleshly efforts, nor through trying to atone for our own sins, nor paying for the guilt of our own sins that we serve the living God. Our conscience is not cleansed by "trying harder" or by having a period of "guilt" for our sins. Our conscience is cleansed by BLOOD. The blood of Jesus.
Heb 10:19-23 Therefore, brethren, having boldness to enter the Holiest by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way which He consecrated for us, through the veil, that is, His flesh, and having a High Priest over the house of God, let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.
How can we have boldness, full assurance and our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience? Is it a result of coming to a place where we've finally, once and for all, put an end to sin in our lives? Is it when we come to a place where we're finally completely faithful to God in all we do?

We have boldness, a true heart in full assurance of faith, and a clean conscience all because of... NOTHING but the Blood of Jesus!

I was going to end right there, but I just want to say this: Although I've spent time in the pentecostal church, I'm generally pretty mellow and I'm not a zealous, fervent, fiery preacher by any means... but yet I just want to add a hearty "Glory to God*!" right here!

*That would be pronounced "GaaaawwwD."


  1. Glowray, glowray, glowray!!

    Another amazing post, Joel!!

    Man, it's so much different when sin hits and you actually feel the weight of it. You just want to crawl in a hole and die because you feel overwhelmed by all of your flaws. This made me think of how a little bit of law mixed with grace neutralizes grace completely. A little law makes you conscious of a lot of sin.

    I guess that makes the priority keeping your eyes fixed on Jesus and not at all on how well you're doing.

  2. How important it is to finalize the cross. As Bob George says, unless we realize the finality of the cross, it is impossible to experience the reality of resurrection.Can't we just agree with Christ as He said, "IT IS FINISHED"?

  3. Amen Bino. As Matthew (Daelon) said, a little law mixed in neutralizes grace, as well as the finished work of Jesus on the cross.