Why the Blood Saves
By Dr. Jack Hyles
A preacher made some careless statements about the blood of Jesus. I’m not going to make any attack on him, but I want you to know what the blood of Jesus is all about. Tonight I’m going to teach you why the blood saves.
Hebrews 9:1-10 talks about the tabernacle in the wilderness on earth. Now it goes onto say in verses 11-14, “But Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building; Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us. For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh: How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your con-science from dead works to serve the living God?”
I want to show you in the Bible why it is necessary for the blood of Jesus to be shed and why without that blood you couldn’t be saved. You will learn why that blood has saving efficacy. I want you to follow me very carefully as we study together on the subject of the importance of the blood of Christ, and the fact that it does save.
I’m doing something else tonight that I don’t do often. I have a hard time preaching a sermon or teaching a Bible lesson that doesn’t have a practical application. I sometimes do, but not often. Tonight I’m teaching just for teaching’s sake. I have no practical application at all. I don’t scuffle over trivials. I try, as best I can, to get along with preacher brethren. I try to make peace instead of war. I try to preach what I believe, but I do not bring personality into it. However, there comes a time when the difference is not trivial.
For example, I have with me tonight a copy of a page of Bob Jones University’s Faith for the Family. It is quoting a well-known pastor. Thank God, he is not a Baptist, but he is a well-known pastor on the West Coast. He says, “It was not Jesus’ bleeding, but His dying. It was His death, not His blood. The shedding of blood has nothing to do….” This same preacher was written and asked to give his side of it. In other words, Bob Jones University put his name here, and so he was written and asked to give his side. I have a letter here with his signature on it. This is actually a letter from him, and I’m reading what he wrote. “It was not the blood of Jesus that saves.” He says, “Yes, the blood of Christ is precious, but as precious as it is, it could not save.” He makes other statements like that.
What he says is that it is the death of Jesus that saves and not the blood of Jesus that saves. Now, on the surface that may seem to be straining at a gnat and swallowing a camel, but you won’t think that when I get through tonight teaching you what the Bible says about the importance of the blood of Christ. By the way, this same preacher said, “It was His death for sin that saves, not His blood. Because of some traditional hymns there is an emotional attachment to the blood, but it doesn’t save.”
Well, we sing:
There is a fountain filled with blood
Drawn from Immanuel’s veins;
And sinners, plunged beneath that flood, (Jesus’ blood)
Lose all their guilty stains:
The dying thief rejoiced to see
That fountain in his day;
And there may I, though vile as he,
Wash all my sins away:
What can wash away my sin?
Nothing but the blood of Jesus;
What can make me whole again?
Nothing but the blood of Jesus.
He says in his letter here, “Mine is the historic Bible-believing position.” No! Historic Christianity has always believed that” blood of Jesus Christ, his Son, cleanseth us from all sin.” (I John 1:7b) A lot of you folks know the blood saves, but why? Somebody asks, “The blood of Jesus that squirted out of His body – what does that have to do with salvation?” You know it has something to with it, but you don’t know what it is; you will know very soon exactly what it is.
To lay the foundation, I’ve got to go to I Corinthians 15.1w you to follow me very carefully. By the way, I have no axes to grind I’m just going to teach you the Bible tonight. I’m not going to to hurt anybody. I Corinthians 15:1, “Moreove,; brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand.” This is the Gospel that Paul preached. Now let’s see what that Gospel is. “By which also ye saved….” I want you to notice that, “By which also ye are saved. Whatever this Gospel is, it’s the Gospel that saves. All right, look at verse 3 and we find what it is, “For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures “-but that isn’t all of it. That isn’t all the Gospel. If you simply teach that Jesus died in your place, you haven’t preached all of the Gospel. Verse 4 says, ‘And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures.”
Now what is the Gospel of Jesus Christ? The Gospel by which you are saved – it says right here that the Gospel is the death the burial and the resurrection of Jesus Christ, not just the death of Christ, but the burial of Christ and the resurrection of Christ. Now we are going to go into that over and over again.Let’s go to the Bible and find what it says about the blood of Christ. I Corinthians 5:7, “Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened For even Chnst our passover is sacrificed for us.” Now, look at me. Christ our what? Passover. All right, so Christ is our passover. In order to find out what the passover is we’ve got to go back to Exodus 12. So, go back to Exodus 12. Use your Bibles all the way through tonight, and let me have your attention. Have your Bible open and read with me.
In I Corinthians 5:7, Christ is our what? Passover. He is sacrificed for us. He is our passover. Now if He is our passover, then we’ve got to find out what the passover is because Christ is our passover. Look at Exodus 12:1, “And the LORD spake unto Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt, saying, This month shall be unto you the beginning of months: it shall be the first month of the year to you.” (This corresponds with our month of April, by the way.) Verse 3, “Speak ye unto all the congregation of Israel saying, In the tenth day of this month (That’s about our April 10) they shall take to them every man a lamb, according to the house of their fathers, a lamb for an house.” Look down to verse 5, Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year: ye shall take it out from the sheep, or from the goats: And ye shall keep it up until the fourteenth day of the same month: and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it in the evening.”
Now look at me for a minute. They shall kill it, but how are they going to kill it? They could club it to death. They could smother it. They could burn it. You see, killing it is not the answer by itself. It is supposed to die, but suppose they smothered the lamb; suppose they choked the lamb; suppose that they burned the lamb; suppose they beat the lamb until it died; all of those methods would have killed the lamb. However, that’s not enough. The killing of the lamb is not enough. That’s the passover lamb.
What is Christ? Christ is our what? Passover. All right, is killing Christ enough? No, it took more than that. If Christ dying for us is enough, then He could have been choked to death. He could have been smothered. No, it had to be more than that.
Let’s see what else happened. Look at verse 7, ‘And they take of the blood, and strike it on the two side posts andon the upper doorpost of the houses, wherein they shall eat it.” Look at vers e 12. We’re skipping some because of time. “For I will pass through the land of Egypt this night, and will smite all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt execute judgment: l am the LORD. And the blood shall be for a token upon the houses where ye are: and when I see the blood I will pass over you….” It didn’t say, “When I see a dead lamb will pass over you.” It says, “when I see the blood, I will pass you.
Now, Christ is our what? Passover. All right, so He’s got to be a what? A lamb. He’s got to be a male lamb. He’s got to male lamb without blemish. He must be examined. For four days they examined him to prove he was without blemish. For 33 years they examined our Saviour, and His enemies said, “I find nofault in Him.” The man who wanted to find fault more than any else said, “I find no fault in Him.” That’s why Isaiah said, He is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb….” (Isaiah 53:7b) You see? ‘A lamb to the slaughter… as sheep before her shearers is dumb.” What was He? He was a lamb. He was a male lamb. He was what else? He was wilthout blemish. What else? He died, but that isn’t all.
To be the passover lamb, His blood must be applied. Lets suppose that here’s a Jewish family, and let’s suppose that Jewish family had taken their lamb-by the way, a male lamb,a lamb without blemish, they had observed that lamb for four days and found him to be a lamb without blemish – and took a blanket of some kind of skin, grabbed the lamb, and put the cover over its mouth, and the lamb suffocated to death. Now, when the angel passed over, would that have been all that was neces No, that lamb’s blood had to be applied! It had to be applied on the doorposts and lentil of the house.
Somebody says, “Brother Hyles, that was simply so that the angel of the lord came by, God could see that the lamb had been killed.” That’s silly. You could have taken some blood from the lamb next door. No, God could see the lamb. If the blood was only to show that the lamb had been slain, the same God Who could pass by the front door of a house could pass by the back alley too. No, the truth is, Christ is our passover.
Let’s suppose this. Let’s suppose there is a family that doesn’t smother their lamb, they don’t club their lamb to death, they don’t choke the lamb, they kill him and they shed his blood, but let’s suppose they don’t put the blood on the doorposts. Now, they obeyed God. God said, “Choose a Lamb.” They did. God said, “Choose a lamb without blemish.” It was without blemish. God said, “Choose a male.” It was a male. “Keep him up and prove that he is without blemish.” They kept him up and proved that he was without blemish. Then they killed him and left his blood there where they killed him. Now, when the death angel passed over, would he have taken the firstborn of the household? Yes or no? If the death is all that’s necessary, then if the lamb was killed, and if the blood spilled, was that all that was necessary? No, the blood had to be applied on the doorposts of the house. “When I see the blood, I will pass over you.” Not, “When I see the carcass, I will pass over you.” “When I see the blood, I will pass over you.
You say, “Why do you make such an issue out of this?” Because if you’re not washed in the blood, you’re not going to go to Heaven when you die. You see? I mean, the blood saves! I’ll show you some Scriptures after a while. The blood saves! The blood of that lamb, as I will show you after a while, is just as much a part of the salvation of the soul as the death of that lamb is.
First we found that Christ is our what? Our passover. Now to be our passover, he had to be a what? Lamb. What sex? Male. Without what? Blemish. He had to be what? Kept and then killed. Then his blood had to be what? Applied on the doorposts. Now, if He is our passover, all of that has to be done.
I want you to turn to Romans 5:11, ‘And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.” So Christ not only is the passover, but He is the what? The atonement. He is the what? Atonement. Say it again. The what? Atonement. Now, we are going to go learn about the day of atonement. So far we’ve learned that Christ is our what? Passover. To be the passover lamb, the lamb had to die and have his blood applied. Is that right? All right, but He is more than that. He is also our atonement.
Let’s go to the day of atonement in the Old Testament. Turn to the book of Leviticus. We haven’t got time to read about all of these rituals, but I want to pick out some key places. Under the heading, “CHAPTER 16,” in your Scofield Bible, it says the day of what? Atonement. It happened once a year. Look at it now. Leviticus 16:3, “Thus shall Aaron come into the holy place: with a young bullock for a sin-offering, and a ram for a burnt-offering.” Now, look down to verse 6 and we’ll see what he did with that bullock. ‘AndAaron shall offer his bullock ofthe sin-offering, which is for himself, and make an atonement for himself, and for his house.” Look at verse 14, ‘And he shall take of the blood of the bullock, and sprinkle it with his finger upon the mercy seat eastward; and before the mercy seat shall he sprinkle ofthe blood with his finger seven times.”
Follow me very carefully. We’re going to let this platform represent the tabernacle. Now there are only two places I want you to notice tonight: One is out here in the court of the tabernacle; that’s the place where the lamb was slain; that’s the brazen altar. Now, on the day of atonement a bullock was slain on the brazen altar. There is a curtain that leads into a good-sized room, 15′ x 30′, and there are three pieces of furniture in that room. Then you go on to the second curtain called the “inner veil.” Inside that is a second room, 15′ x 15′. Inside that second room is what was called the “mercy seat,” which was the top of the ark of the covenant. Nobody could go inside that room but one man, and that was the high priest, and he could go only one day a year. That is the day we are talking about – the day of atonement.
Who is our atonement? Jesus. Jesus is our what? Atonement. He is also our what? Passover. All right, on the day of atonement the high priest would take the blood of the bullock that was killed and place the blood of that bullock in a basin. That blood was taken by the high priest into the first room and then on into the second room where God’s very presence dwelt above that mercy seat. Seven times he would sprinkie blood on that mercy seat. That blood on that mercy seat was there in the presence of God’s Shekinah glory – the presence of God Himself.
Listen to me, folks. If that blood had just been left at the altar,not a single Jew would have had one sin forgiven. It’s not the blood at the foot of the altar; it’s the blood on the mercy seat. So, it isn’t just the fact that the bullock died. If the bullock had died and shed his blood, that would not have forgiven one sin, but that blood had to be taken by the high priest inside the holy of holies and sprinkled seven times on the mercy seat. The same blood that was shed out there on the altar is now sprinkled here on this seat. When God saw it, God said, “Sin is atoned for!” and the day of atonement was over.
Now follow me carefully. The Bible says Jesus was our Passover. What else was he? Atonement. When John the Baptist pointed to Jesus, he said, “Behold the lamb of God.” So what was he? He was our sacrifice on this altar out here. This is a picture of Calvary. However, ladies and gentlemen, the blood on this altar out here will not get us to Heaven. The blood has got to get the heavenly mercy seat. The Bible says that the earthly tabernacle was a type of the heavenly tabernacle. Just as the blood of that lamb had to get in there on the holy of holies mercy seat, even so the real blood of the real Lamb must get to the real mercy seat in the real presence of God. Brother, if the blood of Jesus Christ, God’s Son, is not sprinkled on the mercy seat in the glory world you and I are of all men most miserable. That’s the only hope we’ve got.
Follow me carefully. Jesus was our lamb. Now let’s go
I Corinthians 15:1-4. What’s the Gospel? Death, burial and resurrection of Christ. That’s the Gospel – death, burial and resurrection – so we have to have all three in our passover and all three in our atonement. If Christ is our atonement, He ha~s to die. Jesus was two things for us: He was our sacrifice Who shed His blood, and He was our High Priest Who took His blood into the presence of God Himself.
I’m going to be the high priest-not Jesus now-I’m going be the Old Testament high priest. I haven’t’ got time to go into how he changed his garments, etc. I haven’t got time for that. All I want to talk about tonight is the blood. The high priest took that blood in the basin once a year on the day of atonement and walked inside and sprinkled that blood seven times on the mercy seat. Jesus was the Lamb Who died, but He also was the High Priest. This is why Jesus must have been raised from the dead. See? As our sacrifice He died, but good night, there’s our High Priest on the altar.He’s dead! Well, how can we get the blood into the holy of holies? Only the high priest can go inside the holy of holies. We’ve got to get Him up. So after three days and three nights, He arose from the dead! He – Who was our Lamb, Who died on cross – rose! Why? Because He had to be our High Priest too.
Now, you listen to me. Jesus as the sacrifice is not the total Saviour. Unless Jesus is at the right hand of the Father pleading our case tonight as our high priest, we’re still not saved. There are three parts to the Gospel. First is the what? Death. Then the…? Burial. Why was the resurrection necessary? Because the high priest, Jesus, had to be raised from the dead so He could become our high priest and take the blood into the holy of holies.
When Jesus was raised from the dead, He saw Mary Magdalene. She said, “Rabboni,” which means, “Master.” He said, “Don’t touch me. Touch me not!” Why? Because nobody could touch the high priest from the time he took that blood from the altar and walked to that mercy seat. If anybody did touch him, the sacrifice was invalid.
Jesus died on the cross as our Lamb. That’s all that preacher in his letter says is necessary, but he’s full of prunes! I mean, if he’s right, then the lamb on the altar is all that is necessary, blessed be God, we’ve got to get that blood on the mercy seat! To get that blood on the mercy seat, we’ve got to have a resurrected Saviour because He is our High Priest!
Why couldn’t Mary Magdalene touch Jesus? Because He was on His way with the blood to Heaven to sprinkle His blood on the heavenly mercy seat in the presence of Jehovah God Himself in the heavenly tabernacle not made with hands. Mary could not touch Him.
Wait a minute. He came back a little while later when the disciples were in the upper room. Thomas came in and said “I won’t believe it until I see the nail prints.” Jesus said, “Reach
hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side.” Why did He tell Thomas to touch Him? Because since He said to Mary Magdalene, “Don’t touch Me,” He had been to Heaven, sprinkled the blood on the mercy seat and had come back; now He could be touched. So He was our atonement.
Are you following me? Let’s suppose all we have is that lamb on the altar. Were the people’s sins atoned for? Yes or no? No! God’s presence was not out there in the courtyard. God’s presence was inside the holy of holies. The blood must be applied!
That’s why when Christmas Evans died, young preachers gathered around him and said, “Give us young preachers a word of advice before you die.” The old preacher lifted himself up on his deathbed and said, “Young men, preach the blood in the basin!” What was he saying? The blood at the cross is not enough. Listen. The very blood that Jesus Christ shed on the cross is on the heavenly mercy seat tonight in the presence of God. Jesus is sitting on the right hand of the Father, and every time you and I sin, Jesus says, “Father, there’s My blood. It keeps on cleansing them from all sin.
I’m not trying to be picky. I’m simply saying, if you don’t get that blood to the mercy seat, you won’t go to Heaven. The Gospel is the death, burial and the resurrection! If all Jesus did was die for us, there is no need for the resurrection.
Turn to Romans 5:9. Here it is in black and white. “Much more then, being now justified by his blood….” Look at me a minute. “Justified by his blood.” The Bible says that the resurrected Christ justified us. What does it mean? It means that His blood was applied only after He was raised from the dead and became our high priest. “Justified by his blood”- there it is! Say all you want to say that we’re not saved by the blood, but it says right there that we’re justified by His blood. You say, “That’s not what it means.” Well, that’s what it says. Romans 5:9, 10, “Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. For if; when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.” Look at me. Somebody says, “There it is. It says, ‘by his life,’
So if you live like Jesus, you get saved.” That’s not what it is saying It’s saying we were sinners. Where do you come as a sinner? You come to Calvary. What happened? By His death we were reconciled. “Reconciled” means “getting back together.” It does not mean staying back together. The death of Christ got us back together, but to keep us back together we are kept saved by His life. What life? His life at the right hand of the Father.
What, in the name of common sense, can Jesus do at the right hand of the Father if He doesn’t have the blood to show He died for us? We were sinners away from God. We came to Calvary “At the cross, at the cross where I first saw the light,” and trusted Christ and got reconciled by His death. I got reconciled to Christ 48 years ago by His death, but for 48 years I’ve been kept saved by His life, which means He rose from the dead, took His blood to the heavenly mercy seat and sprinkled it there; and Jesus Christ, sitting on the right hand of the Father, keeps on cleansing me from all sin by His blood on the mercy seat! That’s why blood saves. That’s why, justifiably so, you sing:
What can wash away my sin?
Nothing but the blood of Jesus;
what can make me whole again?
Nothing but the blood of Jesus.
There are two things Jesus is. We found in I Corinthians. He is our what? Our passover. For passover they had to have what? A lamb. What sex? Male. Without what? Blemish. He had to be kept up and examined. Then he had to be what? Killed. Then his blood had to be applied to the doorposts. If there is no blood on the doorposts, you could kill a thousand lambs, but your firstborn is going to be killed! Do you know what that doctrine is that we’re saved by His death only? It is nothing but Roman Catholic doctrine. It is crucifix stuff. Yeah, let’s get a crucifix and rub it. No, sir! If I ever wear anything around my neck, it will not be a crucifix; it will be an empty tomb! What the crucifix represents only reconciled me to God, but the empty tomb keeps me with God. I’m kept saved by His life. I’m reconciled by His death and kept saved by His life.
Hebrews 7:25b, “…seeing he ever liveth to make intercession them.” That’s the life it’s talking about in Romans 5:10. There are two things He had to be: the lamb and the high priest. Jesus is our what? Passover. The lamb had to be killed and the blood put on the what? Doorposts. No doorpost blood, no salvation. Jesus is not only our passover, but our what? Atonement. The lamb killed on the altar is not all of it. That’s necessary, but not all of it. The blood had to be taken inside the holy of holies and sprinkled on the mercy seat by the high priest-Jesus is our Lamb, and Jesus is our resurrected High Priest!
It is very interesting. In the book of Revelation over and over again He is called the Lamb. “I saw the lamb” is stated often in Revelation, but it is very interesting that in the epistles not much is said about Him as a lamb. Paul speaks about Him in most of Hebrews as High Priest. When you were unsaved, you needed a lamb. As soon as you got that lamb, you needed that blood sprinkled on the mercy seat – the resurrected Christ.
Let’s go to something else. Last Sunday morning we took the Lord’s Supper. What did we take first? The bread. Why? That represents what of Christ? The body. His body was what? Broken. He died. So the first thing we remembered last Sunday morning was the death of Christ. That’s necessary. Then, after we got through with that, we drank the juice. That represents the what? The blood of Christ. The blood of Christ is the resurrected Lord. He took His blood as the high priest to the mercy seat. So last Sunday morning in the bread we celebrated His death, and in the juice we celebrated His resurrection.
Let’s go a step further. Turn to Leviticus 14. 1 want you to notice the cleansing of the leper. Leprosy, of course, is a symbol of sin. The outstanding type of sin in all the Bible is leprosy. Look at Leviticus 14:1-5, ‘And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, This shall be the law of the leper in the day of his cleansing: He shall be brought unto the priest: And the priest shall go forth out of the camp; and the priest shall look, and, behold, if the plague of leprosy be healed in the leper; Then shall the priest command to take for him that is to be cleansed two birds alive and clean, and cedar wood, and scarlet, and hyssop: And the priest shall command that one of the birds be killed in an earthen vessel over running water. What does that represent? Jesus, our sacrifice, killed in a what? Earthen vessel. He was clothed upon with flesh. Verse 6, ‘As for the living bird, he shall take it, and the cedar wood, and the scarlet, and the hyssop, and shall dip them and the living bird in the blood of the bird that was killed over the running water: And he shall sprinkle upon him that is to be cleansed from the leprosy seven times, and shall pronounce him clean, and shall let the living bird loose into the open field.”
Here are two birds. All right, one bird is going to be what? He is going to be killed. I just killed that bird. Did I smother him? No. I shed his blood. Now then, we take the second bird, the living bird, and take the blood of the first bird that is dead, and we dip that second bird down into the blood of the first bird and let him go into an open field. What does that picture? The first bird pictures the death of Christ, but that isn’t enough. You’ve got to have the resurrection of Christ. That bird wasn’t let go in the open field until he had the blood with him. So the first bird pictures the Lamb The second bird pictures the High Priest taking off to Heaven with the blood!
Every time a leper was cleansed, the death of Christ and the resurrection of Christ were both pictured. The great purpose of the resurrection of Christ was because we needed more than a lamb to save us; we needed a high priest to save us. The high priest needed to take the blood to the presence of God. That’s why you have that picture.
Consider what they did at the consecration of the priest. When they consecrated the priest, they took the blood of a sacrifice. The first thing they did was touch the lobe of his right ear with that blood. Then they touched the thumb of his right hand with that blood. Then they touched the big toe of his right foot with that blood. Why? Because the blood was necessary for the priest to be anointed and consecrated. Why the lobe of the right ear? Because the Gospel of Christ is first heard! It’s not seen in a play; it’s not seen in a movie; it’s heard. Second, the thumb of the right hand – it’s taken. Third, the big toe of the right foot – it’s carried to other people. What I’m saying is that a priest couldn’t even be consecrated without the blood.
If the death was all it was, Christ is not our passover because the blood was not applied. If the death of Jesus was all it took to save us, He’s not our atonement because the blood is not at the mercy seat in Heaven. If the death was all it took to save us, we didn’t need to drink the juice last Sunday morning; we could have taken just the bread. However, it takes more than the bread; it takes the juice because it takes more than the broken body. It takes the shed blood, but not only the shed blood, but the applied blood of Christ. By the way, when I win a soul to Christ, I always mention the resurrection. I always do. I always tell the person, “Jesus Christ paid your penalty for sin, and after 72 hours, He rose again for your justification.” Why did He rise? He rose because He bad to take His blood to the presence of our God. He as our High Priest is constantly reminding God the Father.
Look at Hebrews 9 again, please. We are back where we started. I’m not teaching you any new thing tonight. I’m teaching you what all fundamentalists believe. (When a fellow makes fun of personal soul winning, he will make fun of the Gospel sooner or later!) Hebrews 9:11, “But Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more peifect tabernacle.” All right so in Heaven there is a greater tabernacle, and Hebrews tells us that the one in Heaven is a pattern of the one on earth. Let’s continue – “not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building; Neither by the blood of goats and calves, (such as were offered in the tabernacle) but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.
Now follow me carefully. He redeemed us to Himself by His death, but how did He give us eternal redemption? By being the High Priest. As the Lamb, He paid the penalty to get us back to God. As the High Priest, He gave us eternal redemption. What is that? That is Jesus simply saying to God the Father, “Look at this blood on the mercy seat, dear Father, and be reminded, I took care of paying it.” The penalty He paid was once for all, all that was necessary to satisfy the justice of God, but the blood had to be applied in the presence of God so Jesus as the High Priest could sit on the right hand of God constantly reminding Him.
That’s what it means in I John 1:7, “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.” The word “cleanseth” is in the durative or linear tense which means “keeps on cleansing us from all sin.”
We sing, “At the cross, at the cross, where I first saw the light.” We could also sing, “At the mercy seat, at the mercy seat, where I walk in the light, where I stay in the light.” We sing, “On a hill far away stood an old rugged cross,” and that’s right, but up in the Gloryland there stands a mercy seat, and the blood of that cross has been taken by the High Priest to that mercy seat!
Every time the justice of God looks down and sees me sin, and every time God lifts his sickle of judgment, Jesus says, “Put it down, Father.” “Why?” “Look there.” Do you know what Jesus does? Jesus takes your sin and slides it underneath the blood. The Father says, “Where did that sin go? I can’t even see it.”
See, you had better be thankful Jesus is the High Priest. You need the Saviour. You need the Lamb. Oh, yes, you do, but you also need the High Priest! Romans 3:25, “Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in hisbtood”-that’s it! “…faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past.” Why? They are under the blood-“…through the forbearance of God.”
Leviticus 17:11, “For the life of the flesh is in the blood.” That’s why that Jesus’ blood was shed – every drop of it was shed, not spilt! It wasn’t an “Uh, oh!” It was on purpose! It wasn’t spilt; it was poured! Why? Because every drop of life went forth from Him. You recall, when the Bible speaks about His blood, it says, “…and forthwith came there out blood and water.” (John 19:34) Why? When a person dies because the heart is ruptured, I mean, when the muscle called the heart is ruptured, it causes the blood that is drained from his body to have both blood and water in it. Jesus died, literally, because His heart was broken. In so doing, He shed His blood, and in shedding his blood, He became the Lamb; that’s the death. However, the Gospel is the death, burial and resurrection so the blood shed is part of the Gospel, but not all of it. The resurrection is the last part of the Gospel. Our High Priest ever liveth to make intercession for us because He entered into the tabernacle-the one not made with hands in the heavens-with His own precious blood.
Paul said in Hebrews 10:29, “Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden underfoot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace?” It is a dangerous thing to count the blood of the covenant an unholy thing. It didn’t say, “to count it a wicked thing.” It’s not talking about wicked; it’s talking about “unholy,” counting it good, but unholy; nice but not holy. It says, “Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who…counted the blood of the covenanL..an unholy thing…?” It’s not that they made fun of the blood. It’s not, “I don’t believe in that old gory stuff.” I’m not talking about that. These folks say, “It’s nice, but it’s not necessary.” Oh, yes, it is! Oh yes, it is!
Jesus is our passover, and in order for Him to be our passover, the blood must be applied! He’s our atonement, and in order for Him to be our atonement, the blood must be applied by the High Priest on the mercy seat. He is our Lord’s Supper, not only His death in the broken body, but His resurrection in the blood. He is the One Who cleanses our sins as a leper is cleansed, and even in the cleansing of the leper, there are two birds, not one. One bird won’t do. One bird must die, and another bird must take the blood into the sky, representing Jesus going to the presence of the Father and sprinkling His blood on the heavenly mercy seat.
You say, “Why do you make such a big issue out of this? Because it is a big thing! It’s the Gospel! If Jesus only died for our sins, then Paul in I Corinthians 15 gave us too much Gospel! Folks, Buddha died! Confucius died! Popes die! Only Jesus was raised! Theologically, doctrinally, the reason He was raised – the great reason He was raised – is for our justification so God could declare us righteous and holy as He sees not our sins, but the blood of Jesus Christ! The blood of God’s Son keeps on cleansing us from all sin!
The Jews in the Bible days went down to the river to bathe at the pool of Siloam and places like that. The Jew goes down to the river to bathe. He takes a bath. Then he has to walk home. Nothing of his person touches the earth on the way home but his feet. His feet come in contact with the earth, so after he bathes in the pool of Siloam, he takes a bucket or a bottle and takes that very water of the pool of Siloam that he just bathed in and takes it back to his house with him. Why? His feet come in contact with the world, so he takes that same water from the pool of Siloam and cleanses his feet because of their contact with the world.
You and I came to Calvary. God saved us. We were reconciled to God through the death of His Son and the shedding of His blood, but that same precious blood that saved us once and for all-that same precious blood from that fountain-keeps on saving us because we come in contact with the world. We sin, but that blood keeps on cleansing us from all sin. So we who were reconciled to God by His death shall be saved by His life, a life that caused Him to become the Lamb and then to rise (after three days and three nights) as the High Priest and take the blood to the mercy seat and become our passover, our atonement so that He could fulfill the righteous and holy demands of ajust God! That’s why we sing-
There is a fountain filled with blood
Drawn from Immanuel’s veins;
And sinners, plunged beneath that flood,
Lose all their guilty stains:
Lose all their guilty stains;
Lose all their guilty stains;
And sinners, plunged beneath that flood,
Lose all their guilty stains.
Thank God today that He was my Lamb; but thank God that death could not keep Him, the grave could not hold Him, sin could not conquer Him, but He rose as my High Priest!