Passover.

Praise God! We are covered by the blood of Jesus, sprinkled on the door posts on our heart so the judgement of God will not come upon us. 

Jesus paid it all and it was on Passover he was handed over to be crucified. This was the night the spotless lamb of God without blemish or defect offered himself up for us all. Old Testement law forbid a man to present an offering that had any defect. 

Exodus 12:5-7 The animals you choose must be year-old males without defect, and you may take them from the sheep or the goats. Take care of them until the fourteenth day of the month, when all the members of the community of Israel must slaughter them at twilight. Then they are to take some of the blood and put it on the sides and tops of the doorframes of the houses where they eat the lambs. 

Does it seem strange that God would require what seemed so cruel to a innocent and undeserving animal? Well, if you consider the fact that that is exactly why he required an animal sacrifice. Animals are not sinful like we are nor do they rebel like us, an animal is completely innocent. And so it is that God requires the perfect sinless sacrifice. However, lamb sacrifices could not completely remove people’s guilt and evil tendencies. As Hebrews 10 in the NT tells us, 

Hebrews 10:1-4 The law is only a shadow of the good things that are coming—not the realities themselves. For this reason it can never, by the same sacrifices repeated endlessly year after year, make perfect those who draw near to worship. Otherwise, would they not have stopped being offered? For the worshipers would have been cleansed once for all, and would no longer have felt guilty for their sins. But those sacrifices are an annual reminder of sins. It is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins. 

When Christ suffered he put an end to such a sacrificial system, he needed only to die once to pay for every sin of all who will receive his gracious work on their behalf and then follow him. 
On the night Jesus was betrayed and handed over to his death he enjoyed Passover one last time with his disciples in the upper room.

Luke 22:15-19 And he said to them, “I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer. For I tell you, I will not eat it again until it finds fulfillment in the kingdom of God.” After taking the cup, he gave thanks and said, “Take this and divide it among you. For I tell you I will not drink again from the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.” And he took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body given for you; do this in remembrance of me.” 

For us who know God in Christ we see the lamb and the blood of the Old Testament writings as a forshadowing of the perfect sacrifice for all the sins of mankind.

We need not sacrifice burnt offerings or sacrifices for our sins.

To offer a sacrifice now after the cross would be to say His death was not sufficient. To offer him gifts or sacrifices to pay for our sins is insulting. We cannor make ourselves right in God’s sight by sacrificing animals or doing good works. We ought to love and do good out of response to His love, not to earn it or cover our sins with it. 

Isaiah 59:6 Their cobwebs are useless for clothing;they cannot cover themselves with what they make.Their deeds are evil deeds, and acts of violence are in their hands. 

The only thing that covers our sins, and washes them away is the unearned, undeserved, and free gift of Jesus Christ to all who will believe. 

So we cannot buy forgiveness.

Isaiah 66:1-3 This is what the Lord says:“Heaven is my throne,and the earth is my footstool.Where is the house you will build for me? Where will my resting place be? Has not my hand made all these things,and so they came into being?” declares the Lord.“These are the ones I look on with favor:those who are humble and contrite in spirit, and who tremble at my word. But whoever sacrifices a bull is like one who kills a person, and whoever offers a lamb is like one who breaks a dog’s neck; whoever makes a grain offering is like one who presents pig’s blood, and whoever burns memorial incenseis like one who worships an idol.They have chosen their own ways, and they delight in their abominations; 

We would miss the point if we still sacrificed an animal on an altar for our sins today. It is no longer required, nor desired by God, nor necessary. Hebrews says also, “For without faith it is impossible to please God, for whoever comes to him must believe he exists and rewards those who earnestly seek him.”

1 Corinthians 5:7 Get rid of the old yeast, so that you may be a new unleavened batch—as you really are. For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed. 

When we know what great love God gave at the cross and respond in faith it ought to produce an inner change and an effort to live new. We ought to throw out the old and the useless and or sinful ways of living and thinking.

Hebrews 5:1-9 Every high priest is selected from among the people and is appointed to represent the people in matters related to God, to offer gifts and sacrifices for sins. He is able to deal gently with those who are ignorant and are going astray, since he himself is subject to weakness. This is why he has to offer sacrifices for his own sins, as well as for the sins of the people. And no one takes this honor on himself, but he receives it when called by God, just as Aaron was. In the same way, Christ did not take on himself the glory of becoming a high priest. But God said to him,“You are my Son;today I have become your Father.” And he says in another place,“You are a priest forever,in the order of Melchizedek.” During the days of Jesus’ life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with fervent cries and tears to the one who could save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverent submission. Son though he was, he learned obedience from what he suffered and, once made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him 

1 Peter 1:2 who have been chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through the sanctifying work of the Spirit, to be obedient to Jesus Christ and sprinkled with his blood: Grace and peace be yours in abundance. 

Hebrews 9:13-14 The blood of goats and bulls and the ashes of a heifer sprinkled on those who are ceremonially unclean sanctify them so that they are outwardly clean. How much more, then, will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death, so that we may serve the living God! 

It is a privilege to serve God and many may say, “Well I cannot by any means just stop sinning or go a different direction, it is impossible to live the Christian life!”- That is true if you think it is ALL you. Here is where faith excludes itself from religion. You are not going to be the driving power behind your changed and obediently life but His power that will live within you. He changes our hearts to give us the desire to obey and love God, but also the power of His Spirit to strengthen us within to obey. If it is up to just you then good luck with that religion, but if it is God working in you empowering you to do His will then you have added ALL the power necessary to live as he requires.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s