Summary: Exposition of Hebrews 10:1-10 regarding the incarnation and its purpose to provide a body for the atonement to take place in

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Text: Hebrews 10:1-10, Title: A Body for God? Date/Place: NRBC, 12/9/07, AM

A. Opening illustration: talk about the Mormon concept of God having a physical body that is bound to spatial and temporal realms, and about him being a man first, and becoming god later, and his physical relationship with our heavenly mother to produce spirit children…

B. Background to passage: The book of Hebrews was written to Jewish Christians that were wavering in their faith, considering going back to Judaism. The writer has spent much time and ink arguing for the superiority of Christ to angels, the law, the Jewish priests, and the sacrificial system. Our passage this morning is the culmination of the entire letter, where he speaks again of how God dealt with these insufficiencies by giving his Son a body and allowing him to be the substitute for us all.

C. Main thought: There was a time and reason that God fashioned a body for Himself.

A. The Shadow Didn’t Work (v. 1-4)

1. The writer speaks of the law as a shadow of things that would come. But he says that it could never cleanse the conscience of sin within the individual, nor could it perfect or complete the worshippers. Its design was to lead believers in God to a consciousness of sin in their lives, so that they might by faith grasp. As Paul said in Galatians, the law was simply a side road to faith to point erring people to a dependent trust in God. The design of the law was not to give a standard of righteousness so that you can be good enough to get to heaven. It was to bring despair in the seekers life. And therefore it couldn’t cleanse the conscience that was heightened to sin by the Spirit. And it offered no help for those trying to do better. It pointed to the help, and the cleansing, and the final sacrifice that would come. It pictured a sacrificial Lamb of God who would come to take away the sins of the world.

2. Rom 5:20, Gal 3:19, 24, Luke 18:13-14

3. Illustration: like going to eat at one of those restaurants where they charge you for every refill but you don’t know that, and you just drink away with no care or thought of it, until you get the bill, have you seen one of those old cartoons where the shadow leaves its maker and begins to do its own thing, In his book, My Tortured Conscience, Martin Weber writes, “He was a deeply committed Christian evangelist. Even in retirement he won many converts throughout the conference. Everyone spoke well of the gentle man. One cold and gray morning he put his shotgun on his shoulder and told his wife he was going outside to shoot a rat. Then gave his wife a kiss on the cheek. Moments later she heard the shot. Only it wasn’t the rat he killed, it was himself. His funeral was one of the saddest you could find anywhere. The unspoken question on everyone’s mind was, “What caused such a godly man to kill himself? What caused him to pull the trigger?” Here was a man who had no problem opening the New Testament and proving the importance of keeping the law. But in his diary he wrote these words, “Here I’ve been telling everyone else to keep the law and I can’t even keep it myself. What hope do I have of heaven? Why go on?” An overwhelming sense of condemnation made him kill himself.

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