JohnSWilson3 Blog


“…by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy.”
October 22, 2011, 2:10 pm
Filed under: Q - Letter to Hebrews

The letter of Hebrews is a sweeping account of God’s eternal purpose in Jesus Christ, to make “perfect forever those who are being made holy.” The Letter describes the perfect work of Christ Jesus our Lord! Can we put our hearts, minds, and souls around the wonderful work God has done for us, “on our behalf,” in His Son? How this would change why and how we gather together as His ekklesia.

Christ is the “Son” who is the Prophet of God, in whom “he has spoken to us” “in these last days.” Jesus is “the apostle,” God’s only and true messenger, “whom we confess.” We must “fix our thoughts on Jesus” alone when we come together! To enter God’s rest we must “hear his voice” and “combine it with faith.” As we “encourage one another daily,” living by His life, we will not “be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness” and we will “hold firmly till the end the confidence we had” when we first believed. The Son is the voice of the Father, the Word of God. He is the One who lives and is active is His people. He is the One who “judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. Nothing in all creation is hidden” from His sight. It is Christ alone who can “cleanse our consciences from (dead works), so that we may serve the living God!” (1) So let us hear Him, and be taught by Him, as we express Him together, for “truth is in Jesus.”

Christ has also been “appointed heir of all things.” Christ has been given a “throne” that “will last for ever and ever, and righteousness will be the scepter of your kingdom.” Only the Son has been approved, anointed “with the oil of joy” by His Father. He alone sits in the place of honor, on the seat of authority in majesty and greatness in the heavens! He alone is the true “king of righteousness” and “king of peace.” There is none like Him, for He alone died and rose again and now lives forever! He is King “on the basis of the power of an indestructible life,” and is greater than any King! As King He has given us “gifts of the Holy Spirit,” His very life, and “distributed according to his will.” He has been “crowned” “with glory and honor because he suffered death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone.” Whoever heard of a king who would die for his people so that they could live forever with him? Christ alone is that King! Because we “have flesh and blood, he too shared in (our) humanity so that by his death he might destroy him who holds the power of death – that is the devil – and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death.” Christ, our King, in and through His people, alone is able to help us! Jesus, our Lord and King, lives in us, and as we live by Him, approach His “throne of grace with confidence,” we will “receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.”

Christ is the greater and perfect “high priest in service to God.” He alone “provided purification for sins.” Only Jesus has made a perfect “atonement for the sins of the people.” It is Christ Jesus, our high priest, in whom we fix our thoughts, again in “whom we confess,” as we gather together. Christ is the “great high priest” because He alone “has gone through the heavens.” He alone is able “to sympathize with our weaknesses.” He alone “has been tempted in every way, just as we are – yet was without sin.” Only Christ entered “the inner sanctuary behind the curtain…who went before us” and “entered on our behalf.” Only Christ Jesus is the perfect priest, because “the former regulation…was weak and useless (for the law made nothing perfect)” and so we have “a better hope!” Our “better hope” is Christ Jesus, “by which we draw near to God.” Because “Jesus lives forever, he has a permanent priesthood. Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them. Such a high priest meets our need.” Only Christ Jesus “remains a priest forever.” Christ is our “high priest forever.” Christ alone “is holy, blameless, pure, set apart from sinners” and “exalted above the heavens.”

Christ is the Prophet, King, and Priest because He was the “perfect” and “better” sacrifice. Christ alone “suffered death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone.” Christ alone is “the one who makes” us “holy.” As a result we “are of the same family. So Jesus is not ashamed to call them” “brothers and sisters.” Christ alone, because of “what he suffered,” became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him.” Christ alone “sacrificed for (our) sins once for all when he offered himself.” Christ is the only “way into the Most Holy Place,” because “he entered the Most Holy Place once for all by his own blood, having obtained eternal redemption.” Only “the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God” can “cleanse our consciences from (dead works), so that we may serve the living God!” Christ’s body and blood alone is the “better” sacrifice! Christ’s “sacrifice of himself,” “once for all,” “the shedding of” His blood alone does “away with sin;” His blood alone brings “forgiveness.” We “have been cleansed once,” because Christ’s “one sacrifice” was “offered” “once for all,” so that “by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy.” “We have been made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.” So now the Father’s new covenant, in Christ Jesus is no longer about external regulations, dead works, but about His indwelling life. He has put His laws in our hearts and has written them on our minds. He is now our God and we are His people. We all know Him now because of Christ, “from the least to the greatest.” He has forgiven our wickedness!” He no longer remembers our “sins and lawless acts!” “These have been forgiven!” What a wonderful Jesus we have! When He appears “a second time” how eagerly we will be expecting to see Him, He who is our salvation! For now, we see Him in us as we gather together with Him alone as Prophet, Priest, King, and Sacrifice.

(1) Heb. 9:14; Alfred Marshall, The Interlinear KJV-NIV Parallel New Testament in Greek and English, 1975, The Zondervan Corporation, 657.

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