Jesus is the perfect sacrifice and only high priest we need
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Read Hebrews 10:11-14
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Heidelberg Catechism Q&A 31
Q. Why is he called “Christ,”
A. Because he has been ordained by God the Father
and has been anointed with the Holy Spirit
our chief prophet and teacher
who perfectly reveals to us
the secret counsel and will of God for our deliverance;
our only high priest
who has set us free by the one sacrifice of his body,
and who continually pleads our cause with the Father;
and our eternal king
who governs us by his Word and Spirit,
and who guards us and keeps us
in the freedom he has won for us.
We all have our daily routines and chores that need to be done at home and work. Engines need regular oil changes. Dentists recommend brushing your teeth twice a day. No matter how large of a meal you had yesterday, you will still be ready for another one today. And as long as there are meals, there is cleaning up to do and dishes to wash.
The priests we read of in the Old Testament were never done with their work. Every day, morning and evening, they made sacrifices on behalf of the people. Each day they gave offerings to God and practiced purification rituals to be qualified to enter God’s presence.
Over and over, every day, the priests were at work making sacrifices to God. The guilt and the sin piled up each day like dirty laundry. However, the book of Hebrews reflects on why the Old Testament purification rituals and sacrifices ceased in the New Testament church. There is a reason why you do not pass by animal sacrifices in the church parking lots on Sunday mornings. These rituals are no longer required because Jesus fulfilled and accomplished what the sacrificial system could only pledge and symbolize: a complete cleansing and forgiveness of sins.
After a hard day’s work, you may look forward to sitting in your favorite chair and putting your feet up. When you get to that point of the day, sitting down signifies your work for the day is done. However, that time can be short-lived, since there will likely be more work the next day. So, v11 paints the contrast between the priests constantly standing and working away in a job that would never be complete, and Jesus making one sacrifice and sitting down.
Yet Christ offered the one perfect sacrifice and then sat down. Sitting at the right hand of God tells us that His work is done once and for all. He has entered the most Holy Place before God as our only high priest. He has made way for us to be sanctified and to enter God’s holy presence where He is.
Jesus is not idle on his throne either, but also is interceding for us in prayer just like the priests would pray for the people in the holy place (Romans 8:34). So even though we add to our guilt every day (Q&A 13), Christ has made the complete and eternal payment, once-and-for-all. And that is good news in a world where there always seems to be more work.
ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: Our Father, who sacrificed His own Son as a complete payment of our sins and intercedes for us in Heaven;
ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: Confess your sins for “he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9).”
ASK GOD FOR WHAT YOU NEED:
Read the New Testament in a year, a chapter a day - Galatians 1