How does the ancient picture of the book of Leviticus, the picture of cleansing and forgiveness from God, become a reality in Jesus?
But when Christ came as high priest of the good things that are now already here, he went through the greater and more perfect tabernacle that is not made with human hands, that is to say, is not a part of this creation. He did not enter by means of the blood of goats and calves; but he entered the Most Holy Place once for all by his own blood, thus obtaining eternal redemption. 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!
How does the ancient picture of the book of Leviticus, the picture of cleansing and forgiveness from God, become a reality in Jesus? Jesus takes the picture of the High Priest entering the Most Holy Place on the Day of Atonement (Leviticus chapter 16) to gain forgiveness and cleansing for the nation, and makes it a reality.
This is how the letter to the Hebrews (in today’s reading) speaks of what Jesus was doing when he died on the cross, rose again and then returned to heart of the universe, to God the Father: “…he went through the greater and more perfect tabernacle that is not made with human hands, that is to say, is not a part of this creation.” (Hebrews 9:11)
The High Priest in Leviticus entered the Most Holy Place carrying the blood of the sacrificial bull and goat. So what does Jesus enter the presence of God the Father with? “…he entered the Most Holy Place once for all by his own blood, thus obtaining eternal redemption.” (Hebrews 9:12) “His own blood” is a reference to Jesus’ death on the cross. Jesus’ death on the cross, in your place, brings full and complete cleansing, full forgiveness from God, if you trust in Jesus. As Hebrews 9:14 says, Jesus’ death on the cross has the power to “…cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death, so that we may serve the living God!” We simply need to trust him for this forgiveness, and then allow that to shape our life as we live for Jesus.
Head: Do I see how the picture of the ancient high priest of Israel entering the Most Holy Place on the Day of Atonement points to Jesus entering heaven after his death and resurrection, to guarantee our forgiveness with God?
Heart: Does my heart look to this Jesus for a cleansed conscience and the basis for how I live my life?
Hands: How can I serve God today in a way that expresses what Jesus has done for me?
Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank you that Jesus has come into your presence and has guaranteed our forgiveness and our relationship with you. I ask that what Jesus has done at the cross will more and more shape the way I live. Please show me how the message of your mercy and forgiveness can practically change how I serve you in my life today. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.
A song to listen to: Before the Throne of God Above
This Grow Daily was originally posted as part of The Jesus in series in 2016. During the School Holidays we take the opportunity to look back at the best of Grow Dailys over the years.