25 Nor yet that he should offer himself often, as the high priest entereth into the holy place every year with blood of others;
26 For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world hath he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself.
27 And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:
28 So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.
It’s time for a reality check. The question of the day is “Are you a sinner?”. I am asking this using the definition of sin, which is disobedience to God. It is not doing something wrong, or saying something wrong, or acting foolishly and harming others. Sin is not an action that occurs between people, but it occurs between people and God. When we do do wrong, it is sin against God, not against the other person, or dog, or tree.
But sin is more than just doing wrong. Sin is indwelling in every man, woman and child. We are born with it, and we will die with it. It cannot leave us. When Adam sinned in the garden, his seed became infected with sin, in a way. That sin seed travels down through time every time a person is born, and is transmitted by the seed of a man. It is inescapable. You and I will always be sinners. There is no way to avoid having that seed within us. There was only one who was ever born who did not have this seed of sin, because His seed came from the Holy Ghost. That is Jesus, who was born of a virgin. Therefore, He is the only one who can ever claim He is sinless, and He did walk a sinless life while on this earth. The rest of us will be cursed with this sin seed the rest of our years.
The nation of Israel was no different. They were sinners, and needed someone to make atonement for them to cover their sin before God. Every year, only once a year, there was a solemn day called the day of atonement. We have spoken of this before during this study on Hebrews. The High priest would take two goats and let one go (the scapegoat) a symbol of sin leaving the camp. The other goat would be sacrificed on the altar and the blood would be taken and sprinkled on the mercy seat, which covered the Ark of the Covenant in the Holy of Holies. It was the only time anyone entered the Holy of Holies all year. This ceremony took place every year to make atonement for the sins of the people. Every year. For centuries it had been this way. The pattern was set (see my last post on the Pattern of Things).
Then came Jesus. He was a high priest forever after the order of Melchizedek. He was sinless, not having the seed of sin within His body due to the virgin birth. He was the only one who lived, or ever will live, a sinless life. He was offered up on the cross as a sacrifice for our sin. When He died, the veil of the temple rent from top to bottom, signifying the Holy of Holies was now available for all to enter. The mercy of God, the law and the power were now all available to us on a personal basis. No longer a need for anyone to stand between us and God. The confessional in a Catholic church is so different than this picture. I’m sorry, but I can go straight to Jesus with my confession, and he forgives me without the need of Hail Mary. In fact, Mary can do nothing to cleanse me of the sin that so easily besets me.
Jesus is our mediator, as we looed at before. He is the one who stands before God and makes supplication for us. He is the one we go to for cleansing, for sanctification, for deliverance, for all things God has for us. There is no one else in heaven or earth who comes close to the power and authority that Jesus has. The promises of God are delivered to us through the atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ. There are thousands of these promises throughout the scriptures, all for us. The only thing we have to do is accept this offering that has been made for us, the offering of the atoning blood of Jesus Christ.
Paul said that he died daily. What exactly was he talking about? He was saying that each day he must get up and die to the sin that still is in his body, that seed of sin that causes us to have wayward thoughts, or do unholy things, or say words that can hurt and make others turn away from Christ. Christ is our strength, and we can do all things through Him. But in order to trust Him completely, we must give ourselves completely to Him. When we start to trust in ourselves, that is when we will fall. WE have no power against sin. It is Christ who is the overcomer, and we must allow Him the authority in our lives to help us overcome also. The only way we can do this is to die to ourselves, so that Christ might live in us. A John the Baptists said “He must increase, I must decrease.”
The seed of sin has not left my body. It is still real, and it is still affecting my daily actions. After all, I am living in a fleshly body while on this earth. As long as I do, sin will be in my being. Jesus has eradicated my sin, but it is my obligation to make sure I confess that sin each day to God, and ask for His forgiveness. I also must ask forgiveness from others if I sin against them. Jesus places a high score on forgiveness. It was one of the last things He said from the cross. Jesus said if I don’t forgive others, God will not forgive us. Unforgiveness is sin, and we must steer clear of this. Sin will knock on our door constantly, trying to make us turn from God. But God promises that no temptation will come into our lives that we are not strong enough to handle.
We have an appointment with God. We have an appointed time with death, and none of us knows what day that will be. Only God knows where this falls on the calendar. He only opportunity we have to make things right with God is before this death appointment takes place. Here is no purgatory where we shall be, and where God will give us another chance to accept His offering after our death. There is only heaven or hell. It is time you made your choice on where you will go. Hell is reserved for sinners, for those who are disobedient to God. We are all sinners until we accept the atoning sacrifice of Jesus on that Cross. Have you confessed your sin to Him and turned away from it? Have you trusted in Him as your Lord and Savior? If your answer is yes, Praise the Lord! If it is no, please do so right now, and Jesus will meet with you right where you are. Be saved by His grace today!