Monday, August 26, 2013

Hebrews 10:1-18: Christ, Finished Sacrifice

LINK: Hebrews 10


BACKGROUND


It was impossible for the blood of bulls and goats in the old sacrificial system to take away sins permanently (Leviticus 4:20, 26, 31, 35). It was a judicial forgiveness and did not remove guilt from the hearts of the people so that they had free access to God.  The Day of Atonement was more a reminder of their sin rather than a remover. The old system was merely a "shadow of good things to come" and was a type or picture of Christ's sacrifice on the cross. The old system was temporary and not permanent.  Christ's sacrifice was prophesied in Psalm 40:6-8 which is recorded in this chapter. 


The writer emphasized that this sacrifice was for all time, that Christ sat down at the right hand of God because it was finished (John 19:30). There was no need for anymore sacrifices for sin. Because of Christ's finished work, we have been made holy. We have been "sanctified" (10:14, 29). The tense of the Greek word here confirms that it is an accomplished fact. Because of this, New Covenant worshipers can serve God guilt-free! It is the equivalent of Paul's concept of justification (See post HERE for explanation of this word from the Romans 5 post). 


REFLECTION
A teenage boy, whose mother was away on a visit, found himself with time on his hands. He decided to read a book from the family library. His mother was a devout Christian, so the boy knew there would be a sermon at the beginning and an application at the end of the book, but there would also be some interesting stories in between.
While reading the book, he came across the phrase “the finished work of Christ.” It struck him with unusual power. “The finished work of Christ.”
“Why does the author use this expression?” he asked himself. “Why not say the atoning or the propitiatory work of Christ?” (You see, he knew all the biblical terms. He just did not know the Saviour!) Then the words, “It is finished,” flashed into his mind, and he realized afresh that the work of salvation was accomplished.
“If the whole work was finished and the whole debt paid, what is there left for me to do?” He knew the answer and fell to his knees to receive the Saviour and full forgiveness of sins. That is how J. Hudson Taylor, founder of the China Inland Mission, was saved.

(The Bible Exposition Commentary: Volume 2, Heb 9:11, p. 313)
APPLICATION


J. Hudson Taylor is my hero. I heartily recommend that every believer in Jesus Christ read this book about him:


Hudson Taylor's Spiritual Secret 

It is my absolute favorite, and I reread it on a regular basis. I do not know anyone who has read it and not loved it!

PRAYER


Thank You for Your finished work, Jesus. Amen
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