In the Old Testament when you sinned, you brought your animal sacrifice, your sin offering, to the priest in the Temple. Let’s say you bought a lamb. You would know that sin had to be punished, and that according to the Bible, “Without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sin.” You confessed your sins over the lamb which, in truth, died in your place.
Fortunately for you, the priest’s knife was applied to the animal, not to yourself. Sin has to be punished. However before the knife was used, the priest would carefully inspect the lamb. It had to be in perfect condition, without damage, deformity or disease. An imperfect specimen would be instantly rejected and you as the bringer of it would probably be seriously told off by the priest. The sacrifice had to be spotless and perfect.
In Jesus Christ we have, as John the Baptist pointed out, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. He is the perfect sacrifice past present and future for all sin. Jesus himself
testified, “The prince of this world is coming, but he has nothing in me”. Pontius Pilate, the Roman governor, said “I find no fault in this man”. God, His Father, twice announced from heaven, “This is my beloved Son.”
The Sanhedrin (governing body of the Jews) could find no real fault in Him, while the demonic world acknowledged Him as the Holy One of God and Peter, the disciple, announced by revelation that this Jesus was the Christ, The Messiah. A hardened Roman soldier, standing at the foot of his cross, declared “Truly this man was the son of God!” And finally not even the devil and death could not hold him.
As it says in the book of Hebrews, “He has become the source of eternal Salvation to all who obey him”. The very fact that He was raised from the dead by His Father tells us that the sinless sacrifice of his life had been accepted and Jesus’s own dying words were prophetic, “It is finished!” Let us, then, as it says in Hebrews, “Draw near to the throne of grace with confidence so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need”.
- Tony Halstead